Thursday, December 29, 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Back home - and spoiled..


Well, we're back home again after a few days in Trysil. We spent Christmas Eve with my mom and my sister, our niece and my grandparents, and I think none of us were prepared for the huge piles of presents under the tree! I think my mom was right, we could just as well have thrown out the tree and just placed a star on top of the pile of presents. ^-^

But, we drove down to Oslo again yesterday- Left the cool, clean whiteness of Trysil behind - to.. a wet, green, snowless Oslo.. Just look at the tree in the picture above. Before we left (on December 23rd) there was atleast a little snow around the yard, but now? Nothing. Absolutely nothing..


Luckily, I can sit and admire the gorgeous gifts I received in this year's SSCS! (Thank you, hhttp://chookyblue.blogspot.com, for arranging this again!) This year I was so lucky, I got to send two parcels to two (to me) new bloggers out there. I love the planning and preparations of the SSCS - I think it's even more fun than receiving a parcel (although, that's really exciting and fun too, don't get me wrong). My mom and I both placed our parcels under the Christmas tree, and opened them together with the rest of the family on Christmas Eve (after dinner and dessert).


Look at the gorgeous organiser Narelle made me! It fits perfectly over the side of the couch or the armchair, and included amongst other things, gorgeous embrodery floss and a measuring tape in the shape of a frog. Also in the parcel was a 2012 calendar featuring Australian wildlife and a lovely piece of fabric with both Australian scenery and animals. Thank you so much, Narelle!


The second SSCS parcel I received was from Fiona. She sent me a gorgeous bag, with so many pockets inside I instantly thought that this has to become my quilt guild meeting bag! I think I can fit most anything possibly needed for a meeting the quilt guild in this bag (it's bigger on the inside, I think we might say - one of mye favourite quotes from a brilliant TV-series, btw). And do you see the little guy with the red ears standing in the back there with his nose in the air?


Yes! This cute guy sat in one of the pockets of the bag! I don't have the heart to use him as a pincushion, but he seems to like the Santa next to him, so perhaps he can become his companion? Thank you so much, Fiona!

I took a picture in the mirror so that you can see the size of the bag. I love the colours!

Just before we left for Trysil, a third parcel arrived from Australia. This one took me completely by surprice - it was from Donna! Inside, Donna had included a 2012 calendar with pictures of Australian scenery, some of her own postcards and a notepad (yes, those are her pictures on the cards and the notepad - she is a wonderful photographer!). Thank you so much, Donna!

Christmas just wouldn't be the same without the Secret Santa Christmas Swap. This has been my fifth year participating - and I absolutely love it!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Murder before Christmas

Dear Mister (or Miss) Caterpilar, who seemingly lived in our tiny tree..

I am very sorry for flushing you, but 1) this is Norway, in December - e.g. not a very happy place to be for a caterpilar - and 2) we're going away for most of Christmas, so there wouldn't be any one to look after you (or much for you to eat, unless you know how to open the fridge and make yourself a sandwich or something..).

Once again, I am very sorry for flushing you down the toilet - I hope where you end up will be some place better. Hey, look on the bright side, atleast you weren't eaten!


Sincerely,
The Caterpilar Flusher.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Some Norwegian favourites

Tonight I thought I'd post a couple of my favourite Norwegian (or Scandinavian) Christmas songs. Some you might have heard before - and some might be new for you. It'd be fun if you'd leave a comment if one of the songs/melodies are used for a different song in your country.

First off is a song called Det Lyser i Stille Grender (meaning something like "light shining in silent places"). This is one of my absolute favorites at Christmas times!


And then comes Julekveldsvisa (the Christmas Eve song). It's written by a writer/songwriter who's very known for his tales and songs for children (you might've heard about Mrs Pepperpot?).


Let's see.. Luciasangen (the song for St. Lucia) is also a very pretty one. I'm not quite sure if I prefer it in swedish or norwegian, though - both are beautiful! (But they definetly celebrate St Lucia's day the best in Sweden!)


Let's see.. hmm.. Deilig er Jorden (earth is good?) is also a very pretty song.



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I'll leave you with another one of my English favourites, one that I (embarrasingly enough) forgot all about when posting my other favourite English Christmas songs. Who's not heard Jiminy Cricket sing When You Wish Upon a Star? It's just not Christmas without it..


Friday, December 09, 2011

Some more favourites..

The third weekend of advent is upon us, and tonight I'd like to share some of my favourite Christmas-y movies. These are (basically) the ones I watch (atleast..) once every year before Christmas. It's a tradition BF and I have, and that I think we'd like to transfer to Plutt (when he's older).

The first movie is one we usually watch some time between Halloween/end of October and Christmas - it's the brilliant masterwork of Tim Burton, The Nightmare Before Christmas. A wonderful stop-motion animated musical.


The second one is one of my all-time favourites (you might remember the title and the song from last week's list of Christmas songs?). If you haven't already seen it, the classic from 1952, then I urge you to do so. White Christmas is just as charming as it would've been back in the days (and the music is spectacular!). Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye, do I really need to say more?


The third one is one I think most have seen. I mean, Home Alone, every one's seen it, right? (But it's still hilarious!)


The next one is one of my mom's favourites (well, movies, anyway). I know, I know, Die Hard might not fit the Christmas movie category precisely - but, it's set on Christmas Eve.. that still counts, doesn't it?


Let's see.. there's also National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. Hilarious! And I hope none will ever have to experience a Christmas quite like the one in the movie - but, it's a good example to use if things go a little wrong (and you can say well, atleast it didn't go as bad as it did when the Griswalds celebrated Christmas). ;)


The Snowman is another animated Christmas movie that's just incredible well made - and definetly worth seeing, if you should stumble over it.



And finally, it's Shrek the Halls - where Shrek and Fiona are back for a short Christmas adventure. It's entertaining and it's got a few memorable quotes. I really like the Shrek-saga. Gotta love the extended use of references to other movies, music, the cast, etc.


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I hope you have a wonderful third weekend of Advent, and that you're all getting ready for Christmas. Remember to enjoy yourself, and if everything's not done it'll still be OK. Christmas will come, regardless. ;)


I'm going back to knitting a bolero while watching a concert Linkin Park performed in Russia. The boys are sleeping, so it's mostly quiet here (exect for the neighbours, that is..). Not the worst way to spend a Friday night. :)

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Finally!

It's here! ^-^

(Sorry for the poor quality of the pictures, cell phone camera + dark..)




Saturday, December 03, 2011

The mailman

The mailman certainly did a good job this week - as in, look at these beautiful and adorable ornaments my Secret Santas sent me for this year's SSCS:
Fiona's adorable ornament.
Narelle's beautiful ornament.
Currently, they are both hanging in our tiny IKEA Christmas tree-bush (about 30 cm/12 inces tall) but some day I'd like to have a "real" (as in bigger) tree again (just, not right now, with young mister Iwannaclimbthat running around the living room, if you know what I mean..).
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The second Sunday of Advent is tomorrow. Presents are being crossed off the list as we speak (more or less) but I'm still lacking some ideas for some people.. Atleast the gingerbread cookies are done.. 4 pounds/2kg dough. A bit too much, maybe, but they are really yummy! (And a bit untraditional, as we have both cars, santas, gingy's, ninjas, pirate ships and swords, and hedgehodges. Who said you only had to use the traditional cutters?) :D

Friday, December 02, 2011

Some of my favorites..

It's the beginning of the second weekend of Advent, and I've been thinking about Christmas music for some time now. So I decided to take a quick youtube-search and see if I couldn't find some of my favourite Christmas songs (in English today, perhaps I'll find some in Swedish and Norwegian some other time).

So here goes..

Do you remember this one? I was very young when the whole Band Aid first came around, but I remember that this song - and video - was played alot on the TV and on the radio when I was little, and although it's a sad song with an important message, it's just not Christmas without it (apparently, I'm not the only one who thinks so, seeing as it always seem to be on the new Christmas albums coming out every year).


Sticking to the 80's you just cannot get around Wham! Well, this is another one of those songs you just cannot seem to get away from - but it's sweet, and the video is nice (LOTS of snow!). I think every one I know knows the lyrics for this one.


I - to put it simply - absolutely love this song! (Did you ever watch the movie P.S. I love you? If not, watch it! The most hilarious memorial service - with the most unlikely, yet so loved by so many, Christmas-y song ever!

And, last but not least.. What's a list of Christmas songs without Bing Crosby? I've got two favourites.. I couldn't chose one over the other, so I'm just going to list them both.

Another movie you just have to see - if you haven't already seen it.. This man had the most wonderful voice..

And, finally, this one. Two unlikely partners in a duet that's simply out-of-this-world.

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So, there you have it. These are some of my favourite Christmas songs (in English). What's your favourite Christmas song? Or do you, as I have, have too many to chose from?