Enjoy Not Knowing

Just another American living in Sweden


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four(teen)th of july


I love the Fourth of July. I’m willing to say it’s my favorite holiday. As an expat that makes for a hard time. This year we celebrated in Sweden. That is sans four day weekend. I mean I’m off, but the rest of the country isn’t. (Petition to the King still pending). 


We made a great day of it. Grilling, American flag decorations galore, and lots of red white and blue clothing. I hope our little one will enjoy the Fourth of July as much as I do. As often as we can, I hope we celebrate it in the States. It does make all the difference.


Here’s hoping your Fourth was full of fantastic fireworks, good company and tasty food. 

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2016 a year passed


Last year I did a retrospective on the year that had recently passed, entitled Looking Back : 2015 Resolutions. I realized late in the year (right around December 31st) that I had failed to make any New Year’s resolutions for 2015. No worries though, because I reverse bucket listed my year instead. This year I thought I’d make a tradition of it and do the same thing again. 

Reverse bucket listing works as such; taking time to reflect on the year passed write down all the things you’ve done that are particularly memorable, notworthy, or just plain awesome. Differing from a normal bucket list as all the things on this list are completed.

Though I still have one post to write from my 2015 reversed bucket list I’m plowing ahead to 2016. Here’s the list:

  1. Helped bring a wonderful baby into the world 
  2. Cooked up a storm
  3. Watched my baby grow and grow
  4. Got a new pair of glasses
  5. Went on our first family vacation 
  6. Cut off a bunch of my hair
  7. Traveled to Austria
  8. Coached a great group of girls 
  9. Completed the first year of my ECE degree
  10. Enjoyed months of maternity leave

Yet again, I have not written about all of these wonderous events, so stay tuned! 2017 is going to bring more than a few new blog posts!


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halloweens past

Yes, Halloween is tomorrow folks, and that means I get to eat my weight in candy! (Right?!) In preparation I’m going to take a look back at the Halloweens of yore, or at least the past few years. On Halloween 2013 Evelina and I had a mini celebration, which consisted of a “scary” movie and treats. But the real par-tay was the following weekend, when our hockey team had our second annual Halloweenfest! It is what it sounds like and we dressed up, got together, and had a grand time.

As previously mentioned, 2013 marked our second annual Halloweenfest, the first one taking place the fall of 2012.


Don’t worry your little heart, 2014 also contained some dressing up, this time as a pirate.


2015 marked the first year where we didn’t have a big Halloweenfest, but that’s okay, I still got my necessary dressing up fix at work. With the addition of carving a pumpkin and filling my stomach with candy I felt it was an extremely successful Halloween.


This year I’m looking forward to a 2013 repeat – in terms of eating treats and watching a scary movie. Or at least I’m really hoping for a scary movie this time… Hopefully you all will have a scary and sugary day tomorrow as well!


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independence day

It’s here! The Fourth of July!

I love this holiday. Though for some reason I can’t fathom we don’t have the day off here in Sweden. I’ve written a letter to the local politician regarding the matter. I’m sure the positive response I’m waiting for is in the mail. While we wait let’s take a look back to last year’s celebratory activities.

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I hope your 4th is full of family, friends, food and fun!

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looking back: 2015 resolutions

Did you realize I didn’t make any New Year’s resolutions for 2015? I did not. Not until now at least, as I’m looking over the past year.

It’s okay though, no need to fret. I’ve come up with something.

Celebrate!

Have you heard of the reverse bucket list? I hadn’t until recently, I stumbled upon this…blog? I think blog. Article? Probably not actually an article…Website? I’m really not sure. Anywho! The idea is that you create a list of, not awesome things you want to do – as you would a regular old bucket list, but a list of awesome things you’ve already done. As a way to celebrate the past, and realize how awesome you are.

Now, my wife would state (accurately) that I don’t need any help thinking I’m awesome, but I’m gonna go ahead and reverse bucket list my 2015.

  1. Ring in 2015 with great friends in Boston
  2. Compete in kvalserien
  3. Complete all the Swedish as a Second Language courses
  4. Attend summer weddings (Maegan & Joe and Max & Amelia)
  5. Get pregnant
  6. Rehab my shoulder injury
  7. Read a book a month
  8. Go to Paris
  9. Get accepted to university in Sweden
  10. Complete a year of PN coaching

I haven’t yet written about all of these events, though feel free to click on the ones in blue to read about those I have blogged about. And, don’t you worry, I plan to fill in the blanks. In the coming months you can read all about it.

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eat christmas food

To all you happy folk enjoying Christmas Day today I’d like to take the chance to share with you what we here in Sweden eat on Christmas Eve.

As I mentioned yesterday, in Sweden, and much of the Northland, Christmas is celebrated on Christmas Eve. In Sweden that means tons of good food.

Christmas food 2015

pictured: boiled eggs with caviar, shrimp & skagenröra, red beet salad, mustard, brussel sprouts and ham

Christmas food 2 2015

sylta, sill (pickled herring), salmon, smoked salmon, smoked shrimp and bread

Christmas food 3 2015

pictured: ribs, prinskorv, brown beans, meatballs

Christmas food 4 2015

pictured: brown beans, potatoes (in the silver pot), Janssons frestelse and västerbottenpaj (cheese pie)

If you find yourself in North America, and unable to enjoy this smorgasbord don’t fret!

Side bar: Smorgasbord is one of the few English words deriving directly from Swedish.

Head over to your nearest IKEA in the coming days, and you too can enjoy all this goodness. Though there’s no guarantee it will be as tasty as the homemade food here in Sweden. Actually it’s highly unlikely, but you’ll get the Swedish experience at least!

Dessert may vary, but yesterday we enjoyed a wonderful Christmas cake. It tasted like peppermint! As per the Swedish usual, dessert is always accompanied by strong coffee.

Christmas cake 2015

There was of course the classic ris a la malta. Enjoyed with lingon berries and saftsås.

Ris a la malta 2015

Merry Christmas from my home to yours.

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