onsdag 6 juni 2018

Back on track and looking back on last years trip

Hey hey!! More than a year ago, since I posted something here.
There have been lots and lots of things going on, a lot of travelling and fun, some bad things, but mostly work. When you finally find a job you like, it can absorb you completely and you become your profession completely. I never had a job that I enjoyd so much as being a teacher. I love working with teenagers. Well enough said about that.

In my last post I told you about a trip that we were going to do. I wrote a travel diary during the trip and I thougt I would post it here as well. I hope that I can give you some travelling inspiration.

Trip to Edinburgh Wednesday March 1st 2017
We started our journey with a train ride to Arlanda, the airport outside Stockholm. We had booked a room at one of the fancy hotels at the airport. Hotel Clarion was modern and very fresh. It was creepy-modern, you know, with glossy surfaces, sharp edges, artsy fartsy wannabe, stiff smiling staff and perfumed air in the lobby. I think places like that are creepy anyway, not welcoming at all.

Thursday March 2nd 2017
Godness gracious how nervous I was to board the plane. My last rides with aircrafts wasn't pleasant at all. It wasn't helping that the toilets at the gate, reeked with vomits and bad stomachs. Once up in the air, the calm laid my worries to rest. Before landing, the plane took a huge turn over the Highlands and the stewardess sang the farewell waltz to us, thus the landing ended with applauses, just like a charter tour in the old times.

My thoughts when we flew over Scotland is that it's not many trees. The Highlands seems to be mountains and dry grass. The rest of Scotland is buildings and farm land. Hardly any forests to be seen. I guess I'm a spoilt Swede when it comes to forests and wildlife.

Our hotel was fancier than I imagined. We were greeted by a door man with whom we had our first real chat in english. It was extremely hard to understand what he said. It sounded like "Dumble goobly wobly mumble". We nodded and said yes, no, thank you, hopefully at the right places and after a while understood that our room wasn't available yet so he put away our luggage in a locked room and gave us the tip to have lunch in the hotel restaurant. We refused politely and said that we would take a stroll around town to have a look. We had the same ideas about hotel restaurants, they are usually not very high quality.

We took a walk around the neighbourhood but didn't find anyplace to eat except a restaurant nearby the hotel. We took a burger and a bear at the pub section. It was pleasant and very good food. When receiving the reciept, we discovered that we had gone to the hotel restaurant anyway. Apparently the hotel owned the café, the pub, and the restaurant in the connecting building. It was hard to hear what the pub staff said, like the door man, felt stupid to think that we thought that we actually speak almost fluid. But actually, most people in Edinburgh speak understandable english even the native ones. Edinburgh is a city with lots of people from other countries.

The direction of the evening stroll was Calton Hill. This town is brim filled with monuments, statues, plaquettes over God knows who and what. Lots of important blokes and saints and architects (because he designed a building, lets make him a monument!!).
 The Scott monument is very impressive in Victorian Gothic style (swoon). I first thought, oh a monument for the Scottish people..or maybe a king. But it was the writher sir Walter Scott that was acclaimed with this fancy landmark. The view over the old town (auld reekie) is wonderful.
Me and Johan at the bottom of The Scott monument.

We passed a faboulous building at the walk. The Balmoral hotel. I wish we had the time to have afternoon tea at our trip, but we didn't.

We stumbled on a graveyard walking towards Calton Hill and we needed to take a closer look at it.

Old Calton burial was established 1718 and were in use until the late 19th century. Many famous and eminent people are buried here. Of course, beside the mausoleums, there are monuments here over philosofers, brave soldiers and martyrs. 

Behind a thick wall is a fancy building called the Governor House. It belonged to the prison that once laid here, upon a cliff, for all the citicens to view and fear.
Calton Hill is a recommendation, if you like to take walks and look at the view.

The top view is a photo of the more modern part of the town with the harbour. The bottom photo is a view over Holyrood park and palace.
Calton Hill has never been a place with buildings but a place for walks and recreation. The filosofer David Hume founded a training track here, first in the world, they say. Claiming excersize as healthy.
The photo below shows two war monument, over the war against Napoleon. Do you know another town with more monument than this one?

The Greece inspired monument above, yeah yeah, another one. Is built for the Scottish philosofer Dugal Stewart, who also were a professor at the university.
Below to the left: The bottom of the Nelson monument in beautiful neogothic style, I wonder if someone lives there or if it is a workplace, nice place anyway.
Below to the right: We could see the people sitting in meetings at great tables in the Schottish Government, we imagined them having meeting about exiting Great Brittain. We were probably right.

  The dusk is setting and it's time to leave. I later read that it was a gay park and that people had been harrassed after dark. By the leaving light, the mist arrives and it gets suddenly freezing cold.

onsdag 1 mars 2017

Winter vacation part 1

Schools are closing one week in february every year in Sweden, thankfully the teachers are also off work. Every weekend I take a stroll through my garden to do some snow shoveling, feeding the birds and checking animal tracks. The photo below shows my backyard. It looks empty besides a few trees but it's because the vegetable beds are covered with snow.

I wanted to show Alfons the mountains and go skiing with him and Oskar so yesterday, I drove for 3 hours to get to Sälen, wich are the closests alps here. It was an amazing and fun day with my boys. On the top of the mountain, the icy snow blasted our faces. It hurt but it had a wonderful taste and smell of the ocean. Some of my strongest memories are connected with a smell, so now I have another one.

I call this post part one, because we only have been from work a half week. This weekend will have some really great things happening so, to be continued..

måndag 30 januari 2017

Return of the light

Wow. Time flies so fast that I hardly have time to catch my breath. I'm about to wrap up  my graduation from University and finally become a certified teacher. Boy it has been some exhausting three years. I'm exhausted and tired of school. Right now, I'm also a bit tired of my work as well, because the work weeks are soo busy. A full time teacher works a lot more than others, thats why we have these long vacations at summer, for hibernation. I have a short trip to Edinburgh to look forward to soon. If you have been there and have some good tips, please write me a comment.

Winters have become shorter, thats sad (global warming alert). We had a few weeks with lots of snow and coldness along with sunny days and those conditions are perfect for outdoor fun. I love skiis and skating and I'm thankful that my son still want me as a companion on skii picknicks in the forests. He's soon becoming a teenager.
I'm trying to persuade him to follow me on a daytrip to the mountains for down hill skiing, we'll see.
One reason that I don't write here that much anymore is that I've started journaling the analogue way. I jot down small thoughts and use the journal to process things that makes me sad.  I've had some bad things happen that made me fall back in a depression last summer, but writing everything down helped me a lot. I also print out, glue in photos and decorate the journal with washi and paper scraps. The inspiration comes from instagram and youtube videos about Midori Travellers Notebook and junk journaling.
Here's a short list of inspirational and favourite videos, there are both flip through, tutorials and journaling videos. I really need some quiet time with my papers and glue to cope. Oh and throw in some glitter too!

 The photos below shows an example of a junk notebook I made for a coworker as a birthday gift. She likes flowers, green and orange, as you can see.

Things that happens right now, bad desciscions and cruel bills are written and affect people world wide, it makes me worried. The facebook feed fills up with political articles by a particular face. My challenge this week is to log out from facebook for a week and avoid the news. 

Remember that if you are at the bottom of the well and look up, you will see the light in the tunnel.

måndag 24 oktober 2016

Catch up and moving on.

You know why I don't post that often, that I hav told you. Another reason is that I have start journaling with pen an paper. I have become obsessed with the Midori TN journaling, specially the style with junk/art/nature style journaling. I might show you one day. 
I have so many thoughts and not many to talk to so journaling has become essential for my well being. More on that later..

First I would like to show you a photo of the view of our lovely town. The old mine is in the front and the sports arena with the ski jumping tower is in the back. In between, lies the city. If you play Pokemon Go in Falun, you will visit the mine more often than usual. It has 7 pokestops within a circle of 200 m wide. The mine is a world heritage and the reason for all the stops. I'm team Mystic and right now in level 20. 

We only have one Pokestop nearby our house, by the church. We use to take night walks to the church and then a walk in the graveyard. 

I succeded with my pumpkins this year. Two of them are really big. I grow mine in a box of 1,5 square meter, in horse poo, and dirt.

We went on a family reunion with Johans relatives. It was his mother and her cousins that met along with families. Funny fact is that her mother and father were second cousins and her uncle and his wife were cousins. So  the word inbreeding were a word heard many times this evening and no one was ashamed to say it. This is how it was long time ago in villages far away from other cities and almost none had a car. It's a saying that the bicycle was a invention of saviour . 
Another quirky thing is that the table was set with cans with this brew. It is juniper brew. Water, yeast, sugar and juniper twigs in a can to ferment. No it doesn't taste well, it taste like mash with murky wood.
Now I'm going to tell you something that might make you angry. We had bought tickets for the Cure concert. I had dressed up and got ready to go, when I couldnt find my ear plugs and that + my current mood made me brake down and skip the concert. Yes, I'm really stupid and yes, I'm ill. I didn't have the energy to spend a total of 5 hours in the car and then coming home in the middle of the night, to go to work the morning after. I was already exhausted (yes after a weekend). Instead we went to the movie to watch Miss Peregrines school for peculiar children. The movie was peculiar and nothing more.
 The old-old firestation (we have a couple) across the street from the cinema is rebuilt to a brewery, it looks interesting inside.
This event was kind of an eye opener of what is going on with myself.  I know the reasons why I feel down and I'm working on these issues. 

Next post that comes up soon will be about the Halloween swap and my new hair style. Doesn't that seems more fun?

måndag 8 augusti 2016

Halloween inspiration

This night a heavy breeze of colder air visited us, it was one of the signs that announce the arrival of autumn. I had to close the window to shut the moaning that prohibited my sleep. Another sign has been rows of canada goose flying to the south. 

To be honest. I have really enjoyed this summer, enjoyed my long holiday so much that I will miss these warm days with abundance of vegetables and berries from the garden. Luckily, this crybaby has adopted the Halloween holiday and embraced it with a passion close to madness, wich makes autumn something to look forward to. 

So, to prepare both myself and you, I'll show you how I survive in this desert of Halloween decorations called Sweden: By doing it myself.
This particular box was made for an internet/blog/facebook friend of mine at a Halloween swap last year. She lives in the US and should therefore be spoilt with seasonal decorations. Please check out her fabulous blog for garden, teaching, gothic inspo.

First of all, I bring out all my supplies that could have a match to something autumn/Halloweenish. Creative caos, that is. 

I use the Vintage moth as a supplier of vintage pictures. The candy bags in the photo below is made in photoshop with images from the mentioned blog. I print on ordinary printer paper, folding, glueing and cutting the edge.
This is a tin that usually contains mint pastilles. The scull head covered the text perfectly.

It contains a pair of ear dangles made of clock hands and chandellier crystals.
This blurry photo below is an ornament that could even work in a Christmas tree. The bulb is an old light bulb were I removed everything but the glass bulb. It contains black glass glitter and is embellished with a flower.

I never throw candle stumps away, I re-melt them to new candles. The lantern in the photos below was made of a small jar, it is filled with fragrant and re melted candle stumps. The jar was decorated with ribbons, lace and images. An antique chandelier chrystal is hanging at the bottom secured by wire. The wire handle and the chain is also made by me.


Heres another ornament, flip and front side. It is made of a bake form, chandelier chrystal, old images, black glitter and orange ribbons.

Everything was neatly packed in a box that used to contain hair products but is now decorated with bats and lace.

Everything of these are actually very easy to do. It's just a matter of the right tools, glue, hoarding stuff and imagination. I don't like kitschy, cheap looking halloween decorations, I prefer the vintage/victorian look. Even if my supplies are almost for free, I put a lot of effort to make it look luxurious or as if it's antique.
I hope that I could give you some inspiration and tips what you can do of scraps. See you soon, I hope :-)

torsdag 28 juli 2016

Update. I'm just fine :-)

Thought that I should give you a short update of what I've been doing during this long absense. Well I've been working very hard that I had an emotional meltdown during the school exam, sitting on my office chair and just wept. I could keep myself together during the moments I had to show myself in front of students, parents and coworkers but couldn't bear the whole day.  It's not only students who have angst over grading.

This summer, my holiday last for 8 whole weeks. Imagine that!! It is very needed and I'm som worth it, as our hard working teenagers. Enough work talk.

We spent a whole week at the cottage. Fishing and eating pike (only me and Alfons ate it with apetite). Cycling trolley for 40 km (well I sat a lot of the time). Having days at the beach (I love that beach). And cheer on Gustav at the football cup. Got almost eaten up by gnats, mosquitoes and horseflies.

I had the opportunity to have my youngest son here for almost 5 weeks. He's a great company, but he has reached that age when parents are an embarrassement whatever they do. Still he says I'm his best friend. That sounds sweet but, yes he should say that to someone in his own age.

Now I have another three weeks by myself. Alone in my home and that is amazing. I have time and energy to be social (hellooo friends, I haven't seen in a year..) do things that need to be done..or not. do some foraging like picking berries and eating home grown vegetables, yum!. Sweating my days away in the heat. But most of all, I'm enjoying the silence and the opportunity to own my own thoughts.

Summer legs: I scratch myself in sleep of all mosquito bites.

I'm sorry if the page looks wonky but our internet died during a thunderstorm, so I'm finishing this post a few days late on my phone. 

fredag 29 april 2016

Work has absorbed me.

I have been completely absorbed by my work. Even my studies has been put aside and I do as little as possible to finish them. The result is a bad student and a good teacher. 
I really love to work as a teacher. I'm going to tell you why.

  • I work with young people, their energy is amazing but some times they can be extremely tired. They live their life at 150%. My students are my battery power.
  • 99,5% of the students are amazing people. I really get mad at other adults accusing them for slacker lifestyle or lazyness. You only have to take a look at their schedule to realize how their days looks like. I try to know all my students, what they like, what they do in their sparetime, where they come from and maybe even their parents. Of course I let them to know me as well. If I have a bad day, I tell. I share chosen bits of my life (without exposing myself) so they can understand that I don't stand in a closet waiting for the next day to come. 
  • As a result of keeping the distance short, the relationship between students and teachers at the school is very friendly yet professional. Our office has become a bit of a hangout for some students, they like to sit by the table, studying close to their teachers or have a cup of coffee in the sofa. The drawback is that we sometimes need to walk somewhere else to talk about other students.
  • They learn me stuff. Sometimes we do laboratory tests that fail completely or try things I've never done and fail. From that we are all learning.
  • I have amazing colleagues. Except from a very few ones most are without prestige and share their thoughts, tips and tricks. It's very far from the engineering career I had before were some older men saw me as a threat or uncanny.
  • My bosses are great people. The principal is a caring person like to throw parties and put the students first. 
  • I work with one of my interests, chemistry. We have a lousy laboratory but I have to be inventive. The bonus classes I have is math wich I find very fun to teach.

  • I beleive that I'm a good teacher because I once were one of those students who didn't get it in math, didn't have any motivation from time to time and generally had difficulties. I can say that I understand them and they know that I mean it. I never call them lazy, I tell them that I know what they are going through (with hormones, lifesituations, anxiety, stress etc). I encourage them to ask questions. I even say "Great! :-)" when they say they don't get it, because I was once a student who didn't dare to speak up in class and ask questions to the teacher. 
  • I have a bunch of kids that I raise but don't have to pay for. I don't have to deal with the early teen problems but I can see them growing up to adults and that's fantastic.

  • I do lots of weird stuff sometimes and the content of my working bag can be mysterious. Sometimes I do silly things like in the photo above punching paper confetti for a students poster. I try to use different kinds of teaching methods and do practical and creative stuff.

So thats why you don't see me much. Time to get absorbed again.....