We've spent the past several Easters at the cabin, but this year The Swede and Papa Swede planned a five-day-long fishing trip up north, so everyone else ended up going their separate ways. I was still looking forward to a long, long weekend, with a few fun things planned, but mostly just relaxing at home. It turned out even better than I'd hoped.
We were invited to Gurra and Gunilla's, along with Mama Swede, for their family party on Friday afternoon. It was lovely and we ended up heading home with arms full of Easter eggs, vehicle magazines, and even a really beautiful photography book all about aircrafts that Jamie and I fell in love with during the evening and Gurra generously let us keep. More candy came our way on Saturday when the Easter bunny left a couple of eggs for Jamie and Axel in the woods near our house. It was a beautiful day so we played outside until Axel's grandparents arrived for their holiday celebration and Jamie and I headed to the mall to get some new pants for his ridiculously-fast-growing legs.
On Sunday it was time for our celebration! Erin, Svante and the kids came over and we had ham, cheesy potatoes, deviled eggs, asparagus, and pickled herring made by Ingvor and Roland for good measure. And then, of course, we had another Easter egg hunt, this time at the playground at Jamie's school, but it was so windy that we headed home right after to open them up. We sprung ahead an hour on Saturday night, so the Johanssons could stay for a good long while without it getting dark and the kids noticing how tired they were.
And then, today, it was spring! I mean, it was fifty-four degrees Fahrenheit, and the sun was really shining on our yard so we were outside soaking it up all day long. Now, back to reality tomorrow, but hopefully a continued warmer reality, and one with more of The Swede.
Last weekend when we were hanging out with Sarianne, she asked us if we wanted to come to Karlstad, a town three hours west of Stockholm, to a trade show for kids. She was going to be there as a VIP blogger (I suppose in some sort of journalistic capacity) and had tickets for us, if we were interested. Then she name-dropped a couple of the performers who would be there, some of whom we recognized from Melodifestivalen and the kids' channel, and we were in. Jambo and I drove there on Saturday and arrived at our hotel in the late afternoon. We checked in and immediately headed to the jacuzzi, which we had to ourselves, and splashed around in for a good long while. We spent the rest of the evening at the hotel, playing in the playroom and enjoying dinner at their restaurant. On Sunday, we took a walk in the woods before heading over to the trade show. There was a lot to see, and we arrived pretty early considering the performer we wanted to see didn't go on until 2:30. So, with a few hours to kill, we bought and put together some Legos, read books in the cozy reading corner in the library's booth, watched a performer do some cool science experiments, and had a leisurely lunch. Jamie also managed to pick up a bug from one or more of the thousand kids we came in contact with, but thankfully it didn't hit him until we were safely home. We never did see Sarianne, as she was heading home just as we arrived, but we were very appreciative of the free tickets and really enjoyed the experience, and the excuse to take a roadtrip!
We got married five years ago. I don't really know what I thought, but I just never, ever expected marriage to be this fun. Or for someone who makes me so nuts three percent of the time to make me this happy the other ninety-seven percent. And I surely never thought that I'd find him more and more attractive, or that I'd still get heart palpies when he comes into a room or when I hear his voice across the office. A lot has changed, but I still can't wait to hear the next thing that is going to come out of his mouth.
Consider yourself lucky that you don't share a cubicle wall or carpool with me. On Monday night, with a few soaring chords and a kick-ass drum beat, Christine and the Queens' song "iT" usurped my most recent favorite, Justin Beiber's "Sorry", in a big way. I was watching the latest episode of Girls(which is also rocking my world, btw) and it ended with this amazing piece of music that I've played about a hundred times in the past forty-eight hours. I love when I'm led to something that gives me shivers when I think about how close I was to never knowing it even existed. Just think how close you came to never knowing.
Linda and I experienced a small miracle today. We had to go to Ikea to get a couple of office chairs and arrived about five minutes after it opened and found a multitude of open parking spaces. Would could have done donuts in that parking lot if we weren't, like, boring, thirty-something moms. Instead we just parked really close to the exit. I also forced Linda to snap a selfie with me to document the moment, obviously, though she drew the line at actually holding the phone, which would have made a better picture, but whatever, Linda.
We've put another schlager weekend behind us and we're pooped! The show on Friday was, as usual, amazing. We didn't have great seats to see the stage, but The Swede and Jamie and I were right by where the singers walked as they were being ushered from backstage to the green room, so we got to see everybody up close. Poor Jambo was so tired that we had to leave a little early, but I was glad to get home to catch some shut eye before what I knew would be an exhausting weekend.
On Saturday, Jamie and all five of our house guests and I went to the mall and bought presents for the folks from England who had recently had or would soon be having a birthday.
While we were shopping, The Swede took The Brits out onto the ice for some fishing. Go figure. A couple of them had never walked on a frozen lake before and they all loved it, I'm told. Saturday continued with a late lunch at our favorite restaurant (thank you, Mama Swede!!!), followed by a birthday party with cake and presents for the aforementioned visitors. And then, of course, the Melodifestivalen final! It wasn't super rowdy since Mama Swede wasn't as wild about any one artist as she usual is, but it was still a lot of fun. A great song written and performed by an adorable 17-year-old kid won and I think pretty much everyone was satisfied with the result.
Everyone went their separate ways on Sunday, already looking forward to next year.
We're all super pumped for tonight's live Melodifestivalen show! The Brits arrived last night (minus our favorite schlager staple, Jody, who I'm very sad to say couldn't get off work), and Sarianne is coming up with the girls later today. Magnus is staying home to take care of Charlie, proving that dogs are more difficult than kids, but his sister Liza, who I just love, is coming in his place. I borrowed a dress from Erin and can't wait to get home and put it on, put a bunch of wax in Jambo's hair to make him look like Viktor, then head to Friends Arena. It's gonna be a great night, folks!
This year's Melodifestivalen final is this weekend and, as usual, we're making a big deal out of it. We've had tickets to the dress rehearsal on Friday night since last October, Annemore and her gang of Brits will be arriving from London later in the week, and we'll be rooting for our favorites with bespoke artisanal signage. These fools were voted through to the final, much to Jamie (oooookkkkkk, and my) delight, so we're making a sign for him to hold up during the show featuring Sergels Torg, one of Stockholm's most famous and most hideous landmarks as well as the subject of their song, directly translated "Bathing Naked (in Sergel's Square)". If you watch that link and think you hear the f-word, well, yeah, you did. Every kid in Sweden is going around singing the f-word these days, having precisely no idea what it means or that it's even a curse word. So my apologies to everyone we meet in the States during our next visit for my child's potty mouth. It's Samir & Viktor's fault.