This is a very typical breakfast. I don't know if all Swedes have these kind of breakfasts, but if not, then I'm glad I'm with the family that does! There's all kinds of bread, jam, cheese, meats like salami and ham, pickles, tomatoes, cucumbers, veggies. YUM is all I can say. I sooo miss these breakfasts when we come back home because it's a great way to start the day.
After breakfast, Izzy and farfar spent a little time reading together.
And then it was off to stock up on food for our vacation in our vacation. First stop, the fish market, or fiskehoddorna (don't ask me how to pronounce it). I think that this area is fantastic. I mean, this is some seriously fresh fish. They are here year-round...I remember coming here during our last trip over Christmas...gotta say it all smells the same though :)
Smoked herring...Swedes (including Joacim) LOVE herring. Well, I can't say that ALL Swedes do (right, Annika? ;), but quite a few :)
Some little shrimp salad thingy in a tomato, I think.
Ahhh...Mr. Fish man. I snapped this photo when he wasn't expecting it (clearly :)...not sure if he was happy about this one or not!
I think this is actually called flatfish, and for a very good reason...it's completely flat, like a pancake. So very strange.
fresh fresh fresh
ok, no we start REALLY violating some of my food rules.
Rule 1. I don't eat anything that has more than 4 legs (sorry little crabman)
Rule 2. I don't eat animals in their natural form (meaning, if they can stare back at me, it's not makin' it to my plate). Freaks me out. I mean, a steak doesn't look like a cow, right?
Crayfish...another favorite around these parts (but I say 'blech')
After the fish market, it was off to the cheese shop. Wow, I LOVE this place. Heaven! What I wouldn't give to have something like this close to home! I mean, you can taste ANYTHING, and we got some amazing cheeses here...the CREAMIEST blue cheese I've ever had, plus some gorgonzola, and some cheese that I have absolutely no idea what it was called except "old". I know, not much to go on, but that was on the label :)
And then it was off to the equivalent of our farmer's market. There are several of these in the city, but I guess this one was the best??? I don't know...I just go wherever farmor tells me to go :) Look at these lovely flowers...
Here's farmor buying something
herbs and greens and veggies of all kinds
Here's Izzy representin' in her Purdue sweatshirt. Actually, she's just thinking of a way to be onery and run away...I think she's slowly plotting Joacim's and my demise.
Thankfully, farfar is a fantastic distraction for her! Oh how she loves her farfar and farmor!
Can I just tell you that these were some of the yummiest cherries I have EVER eaten.....ever
Ahhhh...lots of shopping, then home and lots of napping. One think that I loved so much about this trip was all the naps I took. Anytime Izzy took a nap, so did I. Lots of snuggling, and lots of rest.
On this particular evening, before our vacation, we headed off to have dinner with Magus and Stina. Joacim always follows Magnus with "my old fishing buddy". I think they met when working at Saab, but I can't be sure. I know he'll correct me if I'm wrong.
Before dinner, Izzy did a nice job of entertaining herself with my flip flops.
And then she tricked Stina into getting out some toys. Luckily, they have nephews, so they were prepared :)
We had an incredible dinner of smoked salmon (that Magnus caught, by the way). And I'd like to thank both for inspiring me to come up with my own little dill sauce. It's not as good as their's, but it's pretty close. After we finished with dinner, we took a walk to show Izzy some horses. Unfortunately the horses weren't out, but the village that they live in is so tiny and quaint that it's still nice to walk around. It was a weee bit chilly though.
Again, incredibly cool buildings. I mean, you just get such a sense of how old these are when you're standing next to them.
A sign for a blacksmith....
I think this is one of my favorite homes over there. I mean, I wouldn't say it's exactly traditionally Swedish (but what really is, anyway?), but to have the U-shaped "farm" buildings is traditional of the countryside, and this place is very well kept.
This picture, and the video following, are of Izzy playing with Magnus. Another great thing about this trip was seeing how quick she started to warm up to people.
I think they were working on a puzzle here.
We have such a nice, relaxing time when we visit them, and always hate to leave, but it was getting late. Speaking of....this video I took at 10:38pm. This will give you a sense of why we struggled to ever figure out what time it was if a clock wasn't around :)