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Showing posts from April, 2013

Valborgsmassoafton

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Happy Walpurgis Night! (Said no-one ever, as far as I know.)  I don't even know what that is, but I know that Swedes celebrate the night before May 1st - Valborgsmassoafton - with big bonfires, and "sing the season in".  Tomorrow choirs around Sweden will wake up early and welcome "Sköna Maj" (beautiful May) welcome.  I will miss hearing my stepfather sing tomorrow - so glad I got to hear the male choir that he sings in last year, bright and early in the beautiful park. It was just lovely.  Here is some more information on the tradition.  http://goscandinavia.about.com/od/annualeventstraditions/qt/walpurgisnight.htm
Maybe I should just start a fire for old times sake?  ;-)  Kidding!  Happy May Day everyone.


Mother's Day is coming!

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"My mother told me, you better shop around," so I did.  I got the best price that I could for the kids and I to fly to the homeland this summer, but "herregud" (oh my God) it is expensive this year! So I'm hoping that this year returning home will be the best Mother's Day gift I could get, but I am very tempted by some beautiful gifts on Etsy.  They are doing the cutest things with embroidery these days, and my mother being an amazing artist and craftswoman herself would appreciate them. (Shout out to my awesome mamma here who I can't wait to see!) Take a look, aren't these adorable? They're embroidered initials in your choice of yarn, and fabric color:
How about this at the knotworkshop on Etsy? Too cute. I love personalized gifts don't you?  
Just one more shot out to the creative folks at Etsy.com, selling these great looking pillows. These are at Crumkunster and use your loved one silhouettes.  Neat idea don't you think?  Here's …

Funny Swedish sayings

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Tee, hee.  This one is my favorite: "Smaken är som baken, delad."  Go to this link to see what it means: Funny Swedish Sayings. And of course, to bring another smile on your face, there's this guy.  Remember him?  Bork!
We're off to Master Luke's soccer game, and then the movies. Yes, Tom Cruise is calling us today.  Oblivion should be good, but I'm not sure about Morgan Freeman in that role.  We'll see (I'm very tough on movies.) Good thing I'm not a movie critic I guess ;-) Have a great day!

Hilma af Klint - cool Swedish artist

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Can you imagine living in the late 19th century when magnetism, electricity and x-rays were invented?  The unseen world became manifest in magnificent, mind boggling ways.   Not strange then that seances and spiritualism were as popular as they were.  If forces unknown could show through your skin to your organs, or bring your relative's voice into your living room through a phone, then surely, they believed, we could connect with the dead?

Hilma af Klint (1862-1944) was an artist who pursued these ideas and deemed her art to be so futuristic that she didn't want the public to see it until 20 years after her death. The Modern Museum says that she was influenced by contemporary spiritual movements, such as spiritism, theospohy, and later, anthroposophy* and that when she painted she believed a higher consciousness was speaking through her.  They now have a retrospective up at the Stockholm Modern Museum (Hilma af Klint exhibit).  Some are saying she was the pioneer of abstract…

Peace

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It's 2:50 the official minute of silence to commemorate those killed one week ago at the Boston Marathon.  I am reflecting on peace.  My yoga teacher today read us a lovely mantra.  I hope that you find this illuminating and helpful too as we all struggle to find acceptance, strength and forgiveness.  Have a great day. Namaste.


Evoking the presence of the great compassion, let us fill our hearts with our own compassion–towards ourselves and towards all living beings. Let us pray that all living beings realize that they are all brothers and sisters, all nourished from the same source of life.   sourcehttp://www.care2.com/greenliving/buddhist-prayers-for-peace.html#ixzz2RD

We came back from paradise to this?

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We were on a true vacation, the family and I, away from all electronic devices, phones and even my beloved blog.  Of course rushing now to fill you in on what this winter-weary Swede has been up to (yes, even Swedes tire of the cold hence the exodus to Thailand once a year.)  :-)  We were on the Riviera Maya in Mexico where we enjoyed amazing weather, tons of good food, cerveza and playing with the kids in the pool.  So hope you didn't miss me too much but sometimes you just have to get away.  'Specially when your beloved home town is being terrorized.  What a shock to come home to that!  I'm just glad that I can tell my children that they are caught, and thank you Boston Police Force and everyone for your amazing work.


Alexander Skarsgard

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For those of you who aren't familiar with my blog I try to write about things of interest with a Swedish bent - contemporary, historic, design-oriented, even silly.  This may fall under that category, a fan-based musing on Alexander Skarsgard, a super hunky Swede, who, as I've just learned, was raised by hippy daddy Stellan Skarsgard.  Stellan had wild parties, with carousing until the wee hours and would walk around naked at home.  This could be disconcerting to friends, especially young ladies, that Alexander would invite home.  Seems rather awkward to me too, but I do agree with Skarsgard that violence in the American media is way more damaging than nudity.  As he said aptly said in this week's periodical "The Week":  "If a kid sees a nipple on television, how is that more damaging than watching someone bash someone else's head in with a baseball bat?" Hmmm, it's not.  (How's that for quick answer.) Anyway heading out for vaca soon.  Hop…

Starting a new business: "Less is More"

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My goal is to start a small business, and I am blessed to have entrepreneurial friends who are smart and savvy enough to have done so already, and shared their learning with me.  So, knowing that many people are in the same boat, I thought I would pass along their thoughts and knowledge to you on a regular basis. 
The first person I talked to when I got back to the States after a year in Sweden about this "crazy idea" was my friend, Sharon, co-owner of "Less is More" a staging company in the North Shore of Boston.  See http://www.onyourwaytolessismore.com/ Sharon was so inspiring and helpful to me.  She's a burst of energy, great fun,  and I think you'll really enjoy reading her and co-owner Merri-Lee's, answers to my questions:  1. Did you have a business plan when you got started?
2. How do you gauge success?
3. Tell us about your business.  What's your philosophy?
4. Where do you get inspiration?  
Please check out their answers below, especially ins…

Annie Sloan Chalkpaint Workshop and IKEA

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That's a weird combo I know (see header) but that's where my heads been at lately.  I've been playing with the idea of using Annie Sloan chalk paints for a dresser - aubusson blue is my current fav- and we headed down to the Swedish behemoth today, IKEA, photos to follow.  (By the way did you know most of the IKEA product names are actually either real Swedish names, like Eivor, or words like this one "pruta" (to haggle).  This one makes us giggle because it's dangerously close to "prutta" which means "fart" and this is the name of some classic Tupperware-type bowls and lids.  Tee, hee. Inside Swedish joke for y'all.)

Anyway I digress, can you tell how tired I am?  Hubby and I headed down there with angelic, soon to become whiny children at 8 this am for their big kitchen sale.  We quickly decided that even 20% off wasn't enough to encourage us to wait in the massive line of fellow procrastinators, so we scoped up the basics - toil…

Tina Pinxit - oil paintings

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Hej, take a look at my new page, http://livinglavidalagom.blogspot.com/p/art-by-tina-rawson_4.html

Hope you like it!  Have a great day.  Master Luke and I are heading off to school. This picture is from the fall but it kind of sums up our morning routine.  Can't wait to be wearing shorts again though!  The weather here is typical March blah but the crocus are up.  :-)

Sweet Swedish Homes and Textiles

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I'd like to start a regular feature where I highlight Swedish homes.  There's so much inspiration to be gleaned and as handsome hubby and I are planning on renovating it's a great way to brush up on my aesthetic and get new ideas.  First up an amazing "parade lägenhet" (parade apartment) from Malmö featured in the blog, "My Scandinavian Home", that I follow and love.  Check out:
http://myscandinavianhome.blogspot.com/2013/03/guest-post-malmo-masterpiece.html?showComment=1364401679607#c126827472745050570

Also what blog entry about Swedish homes would be complete without a mention of the giant force in the home industry IKEA?  Hubby and I are going there this weekend to look at the Lidingö kitchen and I am so digging the Swedish Country look which is my stylistic first love i.e. "allmoge" as it's called in Sweden.  See http://www.ikeafamilylivemagazine.com/us/en/article/31963  Here's a peak at Eva Lundgreen's work above.