Enjoy Not Knowing

Just another American living in Sweden


3 Comments

an apology

I have been away now for over two months. Those of you who have followed this blog for a while can attest to the fact that this tends to happen occasionally.

Life gets busy.

In the recent months I have been wrapping up my Swedish as a second language course – the final exam is tomorrow. I’ve been running like a mad woman. I’ve travelled across the Atlantic, which was lovely, I’ve hosted a friend here in Sweden, and I’ve been party planning. I’m well on my way to taking my driver’s test at the end of the month. Work has also made a big appearance in my scheduling, as we’ve entered the busiest time of the year – the end of the school year. Meetings galore!

I would like to say that you’ll all soon get to hear more about these exciting events soon. But there are no guarantees. Especially with the exciting announcement that’s coming up.

Tune in tomorrow to see what’s in store!

In the mean time, I will leave you with this lovely thought from Brian Andreas:

photo

My own picture, Brian’s words.

signature

Advertisements


5 Comments

my “new” job

I have officially worked at my place of employment for over a year. A while ago, I told you I had gotten a new job, and had you guess about what it could be.

Here’s the big reveal: I’m a pre-school teacher.

The anticipation must have been eating away at you. After having worked at my new job for a little over a year and a half I have realized a few things.

  1. Small children are both wonderful and terrible. (Lucky for us, usually the former.)
  2. Working with children may be the most rewarding thing I have ever done.
  3. Sweden rocks

.

Let me explain this last point. First by taking you back to the very beginning. It’s a very good place to start. The beginning of this story starts in July of 2012. I had worked my final weeks at REC, you all remember good ‘ol REC, and the many shenanigans I got in to there. Well I had nostalgically worked my final weeks there (something about knowing you’re leaving to never return makes everything a little nostalgic – and funny – oh how we laughed!) and had moved up north. Not too far mind you, I do have some sense left in me. As mentioned, it was July of 2013, a beautiful Swedish summer, and I was getting paid to do absolutely nothing. (Reason 1 why Sweden rocks.) I had amassed enough vacation days while working at REC to pay for my entire summer vacation. I had 5 weeks off in a row, and my bank account did not suffer for it. I even went on an actual vacation to scare the socks off my Mom for her birthday.

This, people, is why Sweden rocks. 5 weeks of paid vacation!? I can’t even believe it’s true, and I’ve lived it. Another great thing about where I work is it is relatively easy to get time off. When Tyler graduated high school, and friends get married, it’s just a matter of giving them fair warning in advance that one would like to galavant across the ocean, and it’s done. I am exasperately grateful for this.

5 weeks, people

This is what 5 weeks looks like on a calendar. I felt this was necessary.

Reminiscing on that great summer of love does make me a little sad though. It is highly unlikely I will again take 5 weeks in a row of vacation. 5 weeks is a long time, a person can get a lot of relaxing done in that time. I’m gonna miss that.

Now you know that I like travelling across the Atlantic when I get vacation time. What about you, what do you like to do when you take time off? signature


Leave a comment

2013 – looking back

At the end of each year I like to take a moment to reflect on a year gone. Okay, no, that was a bold faced lie, sounded good though, right?

This year at least I would like to take a look at last year’s New Year’s resolutions which read as follows:

  1. Paint a painting.
  2. Find a lasagna recipe Evelina enjoys as much as I do.
  3. Make homemade macaroni and cheese.
  4. Bake a rulltårta.
  5. Watch more movies.

.

It seems the only resolution I have successfully been able to follow is number five. To be fair I have also completed 3 & 4, but really just in the past few days as a last ditch attempt to be successful with my resolutions. Yes, I deem 3/5 successful. Passing grade people!

In regards to the first two. I’m pretty okay with their lack of completion, as they are both well on their way. For my birthday Evelina got me two canvases and some paints. I have already planned out what I am going to paint and how I’m going to paint it. Half way there. As for number 2…Evelina has exasperatingly explained that she does not like lasagna. She will not like lasagna. As she does not like cheese, which is a main ingredient in lasagna. Little does she know I plan on adding these two uncompleted resolutions to my new resolution list (coming 2014) and I have a little something up my sleeve. Cue evil laugh.

found here

found here

I don’t want to dwell on the things I haven’t accomplished, but rather take a look at the things I have.

  1. Well on my way on learning Swedish
  2. Read Wuthering Heights
  3. Went to Mexico
  4. Read a book a month (despite some delays in posting about it – coming soon)
  5. Own the complete 10 seasons of Friends

.

And those are just the things off of my 25 before 25 list. I’ve even:

  1. Planned a Lucia celebration
  2. Celebrated my Dad’s birthday with him
  3. Attended my brother’s high school graduation
  4. Listened to my calendar when it told me to eat chocolate for breakfast
  5. Learned even more about Sweden

.

I’d say this has been a successful year.

signature


Leave a comment

one month ago today

I thought I would take this opportunity, during a time of merriment and cheer, to reminisce on Thanksgiving. My Thanksgiving post was short and sweet, with a super cute card I got, feel free to check it out.
Now you get to see how we do Thanksgiving festivities in Sweden. You could read last years post. Or you could check out the pictures below.
Thanksgiving 2013
Now I’m hungry.
signature


3 Comments

graduating: here and there

My brother graduated high school this June. My youngest brother. Not to make this about me, but holy crap, I am SO OLD!!! I can’t even handle it.

Moving on.

It was a festive event with lots of festivities. And balloons. I don’t recall having so many balloons at my high school graduation. In fact I remember very little about the actual day of my high school graduation……I wonder why. BUT! That is neither here nor there, like I said, this isn’t about me.

Tyler graduated the 9th of June, and I was so lucky to have been able to be there.

The weekend was full of celebratory dinners, grilling, and present opening.

Tyler's graduation 1

And of course the big event.

the event

As it happened Tyler’s graduation weekend was the same exact weekend as high school graduation in the city I live in in Sweden. The way the Swedes choose to celebrate graduation differs from the usual traditions in the US.

First on graduation day you have a champagne breakfast with your entire class, and teachers. (The big difference here from the US is the presence of champagne, as 18 is the drinking age in Sweden, and also the age of high school graduation.) After breakfast there’s some sort of assembly of the entire class. Then the class as a whole exits their school building, to the welcoming croud of their closest friends and family. The immediate family of the graduate makes a sign, usually with an embarassing childhood photo of the graduate printed as large as possible on the sign.

I clearly took this opportunity to make one for Tyler.

photo 5

As you can see in the picture of Tyler, another aspect of the sign tradition is that family and friends present the graduate with toys and commemorative items. These toys (and an occational bottle of champagne) are mounted on string, and hung around the graduate’s neck. To top off the look the Swedes always wear their graduation caps, which look like white sailor hats. So many Swedish high school graduates have a picture that look a lot like this:

photo 1 (4)

picture found here

The graduates then join the members of their class in a large truck and/or on the flatbed behind a tractor and/or some other sort of large vehicle. I should first explain that each graduating class is divided into many groups, and it is in these groups that you take all of your high school classes. So, it’s not like 300 people were piled onto a truck. It’s usually around 30. Much safer. Although they do get booze…less safe…

Loud music is usually played out of every vehicle. The graduates are also usually armed with some sort of horn/noise maker. Plus they can always yell. They essentially have a party on a tractor’s flatbed. Which they have decorated before hand in preparation. These many decked out vehicles then form a sort of parade through the city. It looks a lot like this:

graduation parade

pictures found here and here respectively

I hope Tyler enjoyed his small part of Swedish graduation as much as he enjoyed the rest of it.

Congrats again!

signature


Leave a comment

the 100th

Hello and welcome to Enjoy Not Knowing’s 100th post!

Wicked cool text graphic courtesy of WordPress

Wicked cool text graphic courtesy of WordPress

What I should say is WELCOME TO THE PARTAYYY!

Since this is an online blog, which reaches people across the world (apparently! – how cool is that!), this party will have to take place wherever you, dear reader, live. The requirements are as follows (WARNING: this is a drinking game):

  • Read through the entire blog
  • For every noun you find, take one sip of beer.
  • For every adjective you find, take one sip of wine.
  • For every verb you find, take a shot of vodka.
  • If you’re still standing: YOU WIN!

What does one win? A hug. From me, in Sweden. (Not redeemable for cash, No expenses paid. Must be over 18 in most countries 21 in the US, and essentially of drinking age to participate and compete. Adequate evidence of completion must be provided on demand. The definition of what is adequate is subject to change.) Good luck!

In case drinking games aren’t for you, you can read some fun facts about my little corner of the internet instead:

Wicked cool map picture courtesy of WordPress

Wicked cool map picture courtesy of WordPress

  • Top 10 countries who have viewed ENK since it’s inception:
  1. Sweden
  2. USA
  3. Canada
  4. Spain
  5. Italy
  6. Philippines
  7. United Kingdom
  8. France
  9. Australia
  10. Germany

.

  • Top 5 tags and categories:
  1. Life
  2. Family
  3. Celebrate
  4. Love
  5. Tied for fifth: Spain, wine, laughter, warm, memories, anniversary

.

  • Top 5 search engine results that have led you to ENK:
  1. James Potter and the Hall of Elders’ Crossing
  2. Palacio Real de Madrid
  3. James Potter book
  4. James Potter books
  5. The Giver

.

  • Total number of views to date: 4, 435
  • Total number of comments to date: 177
  • All time high views in one day: 111 (on this post)
  • Number of followers: 40

A big THANK YOU to all you readers for stopping by every once in a while.

That’s it for me.

signature


3 Comments

happy birthday dad!

Last year on my Dad’s birthday I shared one of my earliest memories. With him and with you all.

This year, luckily, I was able to be home to celebrate with my Dad and family. Not on the actual day…but weekend before is pretty damn good when you live an ocean away. That’s what I say.

We watched my Dad play soccer and had a cook out. The soccer game was a good match, where Dad was in net. Or he was in net up until the last 20 minutes, where he came in and put one away. That’s right, he had a shut out and a goal, quite the Sunday morning. Dad’s goal brought the score to 4-0. An exciting game to watch on a beautiful fall day.

Dad's soccer day

Dinner was also good.

dinner time!

And of course there were presents.

Dad's birthday 2013

So: Happy Birthday Dad! Grattis! Congratulations on another year well lived.

signature