H.E.A.T at Rockbåten, photo by Pär Altan

lördag 25 juni 2016

50 year celebration in Dalarna and Midsummer

The hotel or rather B&B

Last weekend we went to the beautiful little hamlet Svardsjo in Dalarna to celebrate Gunilla who turned 50 (in January but since it's so cold then she wanted to have the party in the summer).
We were 24 people gathered, all the closest family members, which was Hasse (father), Gittan (mother), me (current wife), Staffan (current husband to Gittan), Gunilla (of course), her sambo Per, Gunillas 3 girls Lisa, Malin and Klara with their spouses, Malin also have two girls (our great grandchildren). Then Staffan (son), Lena (his spouse) and their 3 children Linnea, Henrik and Oskar with their spouses and of course our own Jonas with his sambo Mandy and Emil.
Beautiful setting

We had booked room at a little hotel, more B&B, by the lake Svardsjon and the only ones in the hotel were we! So we owned it :-) So nice and very picturesque, chicken happily picking around in the garden (and their egg we had for breakfast). 

The days started with games. There were quiz, jumping the frogs, throwing boots, running with potatoe in a spoon, running with balloons between members in a team, throwing balls to throw down a pyramide of plastic glasses (more difficult than it sounds) and also a music quiz.

Breakfast with the family 
We had a wonderful dinner, lots of singing during dinner and games. All in all a wonderful day and night. Because it really doesn't get dark this time of the year so at 1.30AM the young ones went for a bath in the lake. They said it was around 18C in the water. 

Next morning the whole clan gathered in the sunshine on the veranda to have breakfast together before we all went home to our different places. A wonderful weekend filled with laughter, singing and good food. It's not easy to gather everyone at the same time.

Elin and Emil and folk dance
Hasse at the viking village

Folk dance
Yesterday we celebrated Midsummer Eve with all traditional stuff that goes with it. Dancing around the May Pole, doing the "Small frogs" and other silly but fun dancing and singing. Then home for some food. Emil's girl is gluten intolerant so I had to adjust the food slightly. We had hot smoked salmon with fresh dill boiled potatoes, asparagus mousse, herb sauce and Västerbotten pie (without the crust) and to that a fresh green salat. Linnea and Hasse wanted herring but none of us other likes it.
For dessert I made a meringue cake with a layer of lemon curd mixed with whipped cream and topped with fresh strawberries and grated chocolate, then another meringue and on top of that whipped cream, lots of strawberries, grated chocolate and also chocolate cakes (Noblesse) around it. Very good.

After the main course and before dessert the youngsters went outside for a game of kubb. The girls won, or so they said.
 All in all a wonderful Midsummer's Eve!

Beautiful place by the sea where we had our dessert. 
Today me and Helen went to Vaxholm hotel for lunch. I wanted to go to the sea because we have had +34C here today and it's so hot. And as you know we don't have AC so it's rather nice driving around in the car, which has AC.
Me and Helen at Vaxholm's hotel
After the lunch we went to a little café beautifully set by the sea and of course there were so many there on a day like this so we had to wait for a table to be free. But finally we got one and had our dessert which was a lemon cake. It was so nice to spend quality time with my sis and although we live in the same city it's hard when we both work and are so busy. She's like me involved in a lot of other stuff than work. For instance she's now chairwomen in her housing society.
The fort at Vaxholm called Kastellet

This is actually a steamboat
Ah well, now I'm going to relax and watch some TV before I try to get some sleep. It will be late when it maybe has cooled off.

Take care and be nice to one another!

fredag 10 juni 2016

Long, long time overdue....long post

I just saw that I haven't written since February 17 and now it's June 10. Wow, shame on me and where did that time go?

February was filled with annual meetings and interviews. I helped my sister recruit a dentist nurse to the clinic and I found a perfect match. I had 35 applications and she was the one I felt was right just by reading her CV. So now she has been working with my sis for 2 months and they both (and the others at the clinic) are very happy.

Then it was annual board meeting at my work and I was elected to the board which really is something big and shows a big appreciation for my work.

March was Easter month and of course a couple of dinners here at home with the boys and Mandy.
Jonas was on a European and Swedish tour with Martina Edoff. He also went to Milan for a concert with the band TREAT. 
Easter dinner with the boys, Helen and her family

Pie for dessert

One major thing that really took all my "extra" time from January was planning Hasse's 75th surprise birthday party which Jonas and I started talking about in January. When March came it was full on. A lot to do. We had rented the venue. Then I made the programs and printed them, the seeting for the dinner, talking to the caterer, talking to everyone invited (which I did through a secret group on Facebook) and telling them to not say a word to Hasse. His birthday is April 7  and on the day he actually got some flowers and birthday greeting cards as well as some phone calls.
Hasse with children and some of the grandchildren
It's very hard catching Danniel on photo but here he is sitting in a white t-shirt beside Johan who is standing up.

The dinner table and us

Helping Hasse opening presents

Jonas and Mandy

Saturday April 9 the plan was set in motion. I had tricked him to go to Emil because Emil needed some "help with the washing" and I told him that some of the children and grandchildren would come and celebrate him from Gavle. I told him I wanted to be alone and prepare the food and be home by 3PM. Of course he wasn't to come home. Emil had instructions. I had previously packed nice clothes for Hasse to change to when he came. All guests were told to be there by 3PM but before that my sis, Jonas, Mandy and Lena (who came from Gavle 8AM and had to stay at Jonas until they all could come) came and helped me decorate and set the table. By 3PM we were all gathered and I had texted Emil that they could come. He asked if he could drive and of course he could but when they were supposed to turn left Emil continued straight ahead and Hasse said: where are you going, we have to go home! But Emil said; It was so long since I drove here so I just wanted to see. And so they went and suddenly Hasse see's my car and that was just outside the venue and only then he started to realise something was going on. I met him at the door and he, quite angry because he didn't want a lot of fuss (or so he thought) said: What have you done?
I just said that's it's cool and just follow me. He said he didn't have any nice clothes and I said: chill it will all work out.
So when he entered the big hall he was given a glass of champagne and everyone (35) started singing Happy birthday. And yes he teared up and so did I.
When he and Emil went to change clothes I had prepared a quiz about Hasse and the year he was born 1941, to keep the guests entertained. Meanwhile I, Helen and Lena started to put the food on the table as well as wine and everything else.
Then it was time for dinner - grilled pork fillet with potatoegratain, chantarelle sauce, salat and bread. For dessert we just had Hasse's favorite cake which is White Lady
We sang a lot during dinner and afterwards, since there are a lot of musicians among our family and friends, pianoplaying, singing and very good mood. Hasse never wanted to go home! He was so frustrated that he hadn't had a clue. He still today says that - I was so fooled.
Anyway that was one big thing in April but also Jonas turned 31, I got a raise and the next big thing was the trip I had planned, organised and booked to Oslo with my work. It was such a success and I must say I really loved Oslo. The people were so friendly, the hotel gorgeous (so much that I will return in September-October for 4 days) and although I couldn't attend all activities I had a great time. I also met, which was the first time in 20 years, a couple of very good friends on Aker bridge. I heard someone shouting Mia and I turned around and there they were. We had a lovely afternoon on the roof top bar at my hotel. To end the month of April we went to Gavle. Me to take Lena and Gunilla to the theatre for a musical concert with my friend Viktoria Tocca and more. It was a magic night.
My friends that I met for the first time in 20 years
Me on the roof of the Oslo operahouse

May - Just 5 days into the month our second great grandchild a little girl, Ebba, was born.
Emil turned 29 on May 9 . Hasse and I went on a luxury cruise to Helsinki and on board we saw the musical Grease. We had of course a commodore cabin with balcony (suite) which I love. The weather wasn't on our side though. Also Tristan in SLC graduated with honors and I sent him a gift card to Amazon.com. It's so sad they are so far away. It's not like you can hop on a plane and fly there to congratulate. It's a little bit too far for that.

And now we have June. Hasse and I went to Norrtalje to our friends for lunch last Friday. It was a gorgeous day and we sat outside in the sunshine overlooking the sea.

On Wednesday I removed a "flärp" a thing that shouldn't be where it was, in my face close to the eye.

Next weekend we are going to Svardsjo in Dalarna to celebrate Gunilla's 50th birthday. We will stay at a hotel since she can't have all of us in the house. I will keep my fingers crossed for nice weather.

Oh, I just forgot - Jonas also went to Australia with Erik Grönwall and performed on a Melodic rock festival in Melbourne. It was his first visit down under and I think now he has been to all continents of the world. It was a 31 hour flight though which is rather tiresome.

Jonas and Erik acustic set Melbourne

Ah well that is all for now. I will try to better myself writing and maybe as the vacation gets closer maybe I will have some time to write. Now I'm so tired that I priority resting and sleeping.

Take care of each other and enjoy what you have .