This year we all went up to the north of Sweden (where my dad is originally from) to celebrate christmas together. I have seven siblings and with all of our families we ended up being 25 people up there, it was such a cool experience. With a little twist as you can see in the video! ;)
Here’s a video that I made, sorry that it’s so long but we were there for four days. And I wanted one for the memories!
Back in August, Gustav and I went to London – just the two of us. I’d be lying if I say that I didn’t have some anxiety about leaving the kids behind (okay, maybe a lot), but it the end it was a good trip. We stayed for two nights and I thought it was the perfect amount of time away without going crazy from missing them too much. It was so nice to just TALK, walk around, make our schedule and not have to worry about anyone but ourselves.
Here’s the pictures + a little video at the end:
This was Gustav’s first time in London! He really loved it and we spent our first day doing SO.MUCH.WALKING. Mostly shopping and just taking all the sights in.
Picking up a few things for the kids at Hamleys.
We arrived to London at 8 am and had so much to discover so we didn’t get to the lunch part until 3 pm in the afternoon. As you can kinda hear in the video, we were starving/so excited (haha). Five Guys was on Gustav’s must do-list. Ever since we first went in Florida, he’s been raving about it. We loved it this time too. ;)
One of the highlights for me was spending so much time in the Cath Kidston-store. Gustav was a good sport about the fact that we were inside for an hour or so. Haha sorry. I had a big list.
Started out the next day by being super touristy. And because we are used to waking up so early at home, we were there before they opened and got to experience when they opened the doors and all the staff stood clapping and singing along to “celebrate good times come on!”. We had no idea that was coming. 😅
Had the best lunch at Leon. It even came with their very own lemonade. Sold! i took the sweetpotato falafel and it was yummy. After lunch we had a video-call with the kids that was kind of rough. Sam was upset and I just missed them so much I wanted to die a little bit. Sat on that bench crying for a while before Gustav assured me they were fine and we were gonna see them the next day. Being on vacation without your kids is always a mixed bag of emotions.
Because we were so tired of walking we just hopped on one of those tour-buses. Which was really great. It was such a warm day, 27 degrees, and the breeze on top of that bus was amazing. Plus seeing the city at a new height of course. Saw stuff like Big Ben. ↑
Gasped at how pretty Westminister Abbey was. ↑
And The London Eye. ↑ Checked off all the major sights in other words.
Plus I really loved our guide. He had the best sense of dry, brittish humor.
And the person behind us was sweet enough to offer and take a picture. The only picture of the two of us from the entire trip. So thank you, nice stranger!
I have so many things that I want to blog about. But the more things have piled up, the less I’ve been inclined to do it? I’m just going to dig in and catch up now. Starting with my dad! He turned 60 in October this year and it was so amazing getting to celebrate him. My dad is one of the best people I know. ♥
We had a big party for him a month later, we had to find a date where all of us could be there. But on his birthday, October 5, we took him out for a birthday dinner. Here’s a few pictures:
A nice person at the table next to us offered to take a group shot so here we all are. My dad, mom, seven of his kids (we missed you, Emanuel!) and his two oldest grandchildren.
There’s not a bunch of options for restaurants in our little town but this ended up being perfect for us. We got a large table in the middle of the place, there was lots of vegetarian stuff to choose from (there’s four vegetarians in our family) and they served food that was right up dad’s alley.
It was a fun night, talking and laughing together. At one point they brought out dessert and we all got up to loudly sing happy birthday, the kind of stuff that dad loves. Afterwards we went back to our parents house and we stayed up late playing boardgames and eating (lots of) snacks. It was the perfect low-key celebration with just us kids and I’m so glad we did it.
As the title implies, there’s a part two from his party. Coming up soon!
Here in Sweden we have something as fantastic as kanelbullens dag (day of the cinnamon bun). It’s on October 4 every year and a really great reason to eat a lot of them. You can either bake them yourselves or get them in the store. On tuesday, we rolled up our sleeves and went for the first option:
I always have two very eager helpers when I bake. They love being a part of the whole process from putting the dough “to sleep” with his blanket to seeing them grow in the oven.
There are so many ways you can do the bun and we tried the twisted knot this time.
Oh Elis. <3 I was busy putting the first batch in the oven when I looked over and saw him do some serious eating. So I asked if he was eating the dough and he said “-no, mom. I’m eating the sand”. Funny thing is I knew exactly what he meant the minute he said it. The filling is brown and has sugar so I guess it has that sandy texture? Haha.
I can totally see how there’s a whole day devoted to the smell in your kitchen when you’re making these buns!!
First batch ready. We made three batches to make sure we had more than enough…
Somehow I always manage to start the baking too late in the day (and then it takes a while) so it ends up being ready like right before we should eat dinner. So the boys might or might not have had buns for dinner that day. Maybe all of us did. It’s only the national day of the cinnamon bun once a year right? ;)
Here’s a movie that I made from friday. There’s a reason I wanted to capture this day in video, we went to see Finding Dory at the movies and the kids were so excited. Sam became a little obsessed with Finding Nemo this summer and he was SO ready in his favorite t-shirt. It was even more awesome that they got to go with their buddies/cousins Karl and Edith. I really wanted a little movie to remember how fun they all thought it was.
As you can see at the end, “fun” was the word they kept using to describe the film. Such a cute experience for all of us adults too:
Friday was a really eventful day! Gustav and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary so we started out with a lunch date and going to the movies (we saw Suicide Squad). While we had our alone time, my mom and my sister Emelia brought the boys about 2h south to the beach Ugglarp, just outside Falkenberg. We we met up with them later and also with some crazy members of my family who biked all the way there (!!). More about this later though, I filmed some during the day so there’s a video coming.
Here’s the pictures I took after we met up with everyone at the beach:
It was about thesweetest thing when we came walking down the beach and both boys came running to give us hugs. <3 And Sam said “-Mom, dad! We’ve been looking everywhere for you!”
The beach is so pretty with the rocks and the sand. We lived in Halmstad most of my childhood/teenage years and I miss living so close to the beach sometimes.
Sweetest little Marta showing them how to collect sea shells. She’s always taking the time to play or show them things, no wonder they love her so.
Despite it not being the warmest day it was so nice to just hang out there for a while. Sam and Elis collected lots of sea shells and both took a swim in the ocean too. Special thanks to mom and Emelia for bringing them! 😘
Our front door has a new color! We decided to do some painting yesterday and painted it in a mustard yellow. We’ve been talking about painting our (ugly) old door for a while now but it has never been so high up on the list of things to do around here.
But yesterday it just seemed like an easy enough project to tackle for a day, so we did.
This was such a spur of the moment thing which we decided in about five minutes that morning. Gustav put the kids in the stroller and we were on our way out to the painting store when I said we didn’t even know what color to paint. Haha. We were choosing between green, blue and yellow so he said “go on pinterest, show me some pictures and convince me”. So I showed him and we both really fell for the darker shade of yellow which we thought would look good with our house.
The sanding and washing of the door was the most boring part. Painting is pretty fun. You just need to have your serious painting-face on. Looks more legit. ;)
It wasn’t as quick as we thought (is it ever??) because in the end it took me three coats before the door was done. Three coats and some really sore arms + neck. I don’t know why it took me so long to bring out a chair for the top of the door…😂
But finally, tada! Now it’s all a lovely shade of yellow instead of that murky brown. Brought Elis out so he could show it makes for a much better backdrop for photos. The front of our house still needs a lot of work but now there’s at least one thing that looks better. Mission accomplished. 👍
On friday, we spent the whole day in the swedish town called Gränna (and the tiny island Visingsö). It’s the cutest place and we kept saying that we really get why it’s so popular during summer. Besides the candy, it’s just the perfect picture of an idyllic swedish small town. If you’re ever a tourist here, make sure you don’t miss it! We went with my sister Matilda and her family and we really had the best day. 👌👌👌
When we planned our kitchen, I really wanted some open shelves. So instead of having two upper cabinets here, we made space to leave the one side open. Putting those up has been a thing on our list that we’ve been dreading a little bit. But on Saturday we decided to just go for it.
The two things we were nervous about was a) getting the length of the shelves just right so they would fit and b) drilling in our new tile. That last thing scared us the most. Haha.
Luckily we found a way to place the brackets so we only had to drill into the grout and NOT the actual tile (huge relief) and after a little bit of sanding of the first shelf, we managed to get the second one perfect right away. We were ready to put up ten more. Or something. ;)
Right now we’re using the top shelf for some bowls and pitchers.
And the second one is for all the smoothies I’ll be making this summer, I’ll finally have my blender within reach! I always had to get a chair before #shortpeopleproblems. ;)
There is a “before & after”-post coming where I’ll talk more about our thoughts and show the whole kitchen. There’s just a few details to get to before that. So this is just a little preview. I’m really happy with how they turned out, we’re going for bright and airy and I think they help!