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Showing posts from February, 2016

Grattis Alicia!

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So excited for Alicia Vikander who won Best Supporting Actress at the Academy Awards last night! Only Ingrid Bergman has previously had that honor.  So is Alicia the new Ingrid Bergman?  Perhaps. Her work in "The Danish Girl" (for which she won the Oscar), "Ex Machina", and the Danish film "A Royal Affair" really show her breadth. Being young and beautiful (born 1988 in Sweden) doesn't hurt and she is obviously very driven and talented.  So a big congratulations to Alicia!  I love how she gave a shout out at the Oscars to "alla där hemma"! (Everyone at home).  Her excitement in winning is palatable, and she seems like a true class act!


Happy Birthday!

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This lovely young lady turned 4 a couple of days ago.  Princess Estelle, daughter of Victoria and Daniel, is soon to be a big sister too so as you can see lots of important things are happening in the Swedish Royal Family. On the other side of the pond my number one son is turning 14!  That's the most important thing for us in February and we couldn't be more proud of "pågen"  (the boy).  He's having a birthday party on Saturday but in the meantime we celebrated with pizza, cake and presents and watched an old four Musketeers film (yes, you read that right).  This movie also known as "The Four Muskateer's: Milady's Revenge" had lots of old old-fashioned sword fighting, conniving and canoodling.  I got confused to be honest because the plot swerved here and there and they all wore red a lot and fought each other willy-nilly but I think that the birthday boy liked it. :)


Sweden Hills - in Japan?!

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OMG, I am having a hard time believing that these photos are in fact from Japan! I've lived in Sweden and even I am having a difficult time seeing the differences in the houses, terrain, and even the flowers which look the same!
I guess that the town Sweden Hills was started by a Swede in 1979 on the island of Hokkaido, Japan  when he was struck by the similarities.  It's located 19 miles from Sapporo, the largest city on Japan's northernmost island  By 1984 construction started and in 2005 there were 550 residents, people who have embraced not only the architecture but also the culture and traditions of Sweden!  I have to visit this place.  It must be otherworldly to be in Japan and yet feel like  you're in Sweden.  I love that they celebrate Midsummer's Eve and appear to really appreciate Swedish culture.
Maybe these little cuties might need a new Swedish teacher?  What an adventure that would be!

ready to be a reality star?

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Ready to get a rose?  Wrong place, sorry.  Also not time to be a survivor or get fired.  This show is "All about Sweden!"  Of course.  :-)  So if you are of Swedish descent and you've never been to Sweden, this could be your chance to be famous!  Check out John from Chicago's story here:  He did it.  Below read what the show says then click on over here to apply because they want you!! (De vill ha dig!) :-)  I wrote about the show in 2012.  It's been popular for a while and was fun to watch!
NATIONWIDE CASTING SEARCH Meter Television are searching for Americans with Swedish ancestry for a reality TV-show. After the major success of the 5 seasons of the nominated TV-series Allt för Sverige - Great Swedish Adventure (The American title of the show) we are now casting for season 6. In the years 1846-1930 1, 3 million Swedish people immigrated to America to build a better life for their families. Today, more than 4.8 million Americans have Swedish heritage. The Prod…

cleaning and decluttering

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I'm all for making cleaning as fun as possible but lets admit it, it's not.  Some pundits would lead you to believe that cleaning the spaghetti sauce off the counter, or the cat hair under the bench is a zen moment in the making and even easy to do.

As I cleaned La Casa Lagom today I tried to slow my thoughts and make it fun by thinking how nice it is to see everything looking clean and smelling fresh.  OK, yeah maybe it is satisfying for the moment but like most chores it just doesn't stay done!  Then there's the laundry, the shopping, the meal planning, the de-cluttering, scrapbooks etc ... no wonder Facebook, blogging and even real work is so tempting in comparison!

I wish that someone would come to my house and just do everything for me, maybe after a little brainwashing (like this) I'll just do it myself. Or pay the kids to do it ;-)


Swedish Parliament

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Swedish Parliament is a game of wits and cunning, and you don't even need to be elected.  Ha, ha!
It is, instead, quite literally a game, and having been voted one of the worst games ever probably not one I'll get. ;-)  I am curious though to find out if it's been updated to include the new parties, such as The Sweden Democrats.  If you're curious here's the breakdown of Parliament, or Riksdag today:
The eight parties currently represented in the Riksdag are (in order of percentage share, from largest to smallest): the Social Democratic Party (Socialdemokraterna), the Moderate Party (Moderaterna), the Sweden Democrats (Sverigedemokraterna), the Green Party (Miljöpartiet de Gröna), the Centre Party (Centerpartiet), the Left Party (Vänsterpartiet), the Liberal Party (Folkpartiet Liberalerna), and the Christian Democrats (Kristdemokraterna). From https://sweden.se/society/the-swedish-system-of-government/ Swedish Parliament did get a 7/10 on "Boardgame Geeks"…

Snow day and semlor

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For those of  you who haven't had a semla (or fastlagsbulle) this is one of the best and most loved of the Swedish baked goods, which in my humble opinion, are all better than American ones.  The semla is only served in February around Fat Tuesday.  It's a delicious cream bun filled with sweet whipped cream and marzipan - there's a reason they call it Fat Tuesday after all - which some people like to dunk in warm milk.  Last year there was a big brew-ha-ha when bakers came out with the "semla wrap" thereby freeing the semla from its bun.  This year I found the "kladdkaka" semla recipe which I just had to try.
The verdict - amazing!

So now I must digress one more time, what is kladd-kaka?  Well it literally means "messy cake" and typically is a runny chocolate cake with a big dollop of whipped cream on top.  Sooooo goood! This version is messy too  but it tastes like almonds and cardamon and it's really easy to make.

The recipe below was…

Vasaloppet

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What's that?  Well it's not a type of flea (loppa in Swedish) and it's not a medicine with weird side effects - it's an old Swedish tradition including cross-country skiing, blueberry soup and lots of fresh snow.  The real Vasaloppet is a 90 km (55 mile) long distance cross-country ski competition between Sälen and Mora. There's some interesting history behind the event (if you're inclined to click on the link above for more) and it's biggest and oldest cross-country ski race in the world held typically held the first Sunday in March.
Sorry just found out it was cancelled!! That is the annual Boston Vasalopp in Weston, MA in February 14th.  Given by SWEA (Swedish Women's Educational Association) and The Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce of New England this is a fun outdoor event in which local Swedes best one another on a measly 5 mile course.  There are shorter kid events too.

Personally, I have fond memories of my daughter doing the mini ski cours…

Looking for work and parenting in Sweden

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Hi everyone, still looking for work but a couple of good interviews this week so we'll see.  Fingers crossed!  I wish sometimes that I was back in Sweden where I had a good job with a decent wage and great working environment.  For me that meant set times that I could rely on, a boss who saw my value and helped me improve, and two breaks (coffee and lunch) that Ingelill made me take because I should!  Don't you love that mentality?  That to take care of children, you need to take care of yourself?  I do, and it's true.  A teacher can burn out but with some easy preventive measures, like a 15 minute break with a cup of coffee and a silly magazine, we can get up refreshed and keep giving 100%.  If I was ever in school administration that would be a big part of my mantra - take care of the teachers so they can take care of the kids.
Here's an excellent article for those of you who would like to  better understand the culture in Sweden and how it results in a different p…