Monday, September 28, 2015

Favorite Foods in Sweden

I thought it would be fun to talk about some of our favorite foods before we leave and start craving them :).

"Fika" - Which means to have coffee and it is usually some kind of pastry.  Before we moved to Stockholm I didn't drink coffee.  Jake might still say I don't drink coffee because I drink frou-frou coffee drinks but they have coffee in them so I think it counts!
This was my favorite fika dessert.  I had it a few weeks after we moved to Stockholm at a place called John Chris Coffee and I've gone back there several times and they've never had it again :(.
My favorite coffee of choice is an Espresso House caramel latte with whipped cream of course :).
Donut peaches!  I first discovered these here although I know they have them in other countries.  They are awesome! 
Swedish strawberries are the best!  We visited Stockholm in June 2013 before we moved here that August.  I bought these strawberries in June for lunches and they were the first thing I had the following year that I could say I had experienced before in Stockholm.  It was a big deal when I saw them again because it meant we had been here long enough for me to recognize something and for it to feel familiar.
Cotton Candy Grapes!  I don't like green grapes so when Jake brought some home I was a bit annoyed ;) until I tasted them and we figured out they were cotton candy grapes and then I couldn't eat enough of them.  They are delicious!

I feel like I eat a lot more fresh fruit than we used to.  I don't know if it is because the produce section seems to be bigger or the produce seems better but I really like having fresh fruit around.
 Swedish Meatballs with mashed potatoes and lingon berries. Swedish meatballs are kind of hard to find but we've found a few places with really good ones that we like to take visitors to when they come see us. Yum!  I also really like reindeer.  It is usually really tender and tastes similar to beef.  
 Butter with sea salt.  We first tried this when we went sailing with some people about a month after we moved to Stockholm.  It is SO good!
On that same sailing trip we had Finn Crisps for the first time with the salted butter and cheese.  It isn't very healthy but it is delicious.  We are going to have to find something similar to Finn Crisps and the salted butter back home so we can still enjoy these.
 They don't really have chocolate chips here.  Instead you cut up chocolate bars.  It is a pain but I actually prefer the taste and the chunks of chocolate from the chocolate bars over chocolate chips.  Once we move back I think I'll put some chocolate bar chunks into my cookies.
Pear cookies!  These cookies are awesome.  I tend to only like desserts with chocolate in them but these cookies are great.  They are pear ice cream flavored.  There are lots of pear flavored things in Stockholm.  Pear ice cream and pear juice are both great!
We eat a LOT of peanut butter.  Before we moved I seriously considered bringing a jar of Kirkland peanut butter because I was afraid we wouldn't find a good kind here.  I was wrong.  This stuff is the best!  We used to get creamy peanut butter in the states because the chunky kind had too big of chunks for my taste but this chunky has little chunks and it is amazing.  Thinking about shipping some back :).
 The green cake is a popular dessert for birthdays.  Typically if it is your birthday you bring a treat to celebrate with your coworkers.
This milk is so good!  We used to get the 1.5% but when I was pregnant we changed to 3% and haven't looked back since.
 It turns out I really like caramel flavor because this caramel ice cream with caramel sauce is really good even though it is the store brand.  And yes, ice cream comes in a cardboard box here sometimes.  Swedes cut it with a knife, it makes me laugh every time.
Another favorite ice cream flavor.
 These are the perfect size snack and the ice cream and dark chocolate are really good!
The best Fanta flavor period.
These boxes of concentrate are used to make flavored water.  It reminds me of cool-aid but with less sugar.  These two are my favorite flavors.
 This kind of hard cracker is common to have with breakfast or lunch.  Maybe dinner too but we usually don't have them then.  Of course it is better with some butter on it.

 Sandwiches are really popular here but most people eat them for breakfast.  I didn't used to like cucumbers or peppers but now I do :).
One of our favorite restaurants is Thai Middag which is right by our apartment.  You can smell it getting of the metro and I often get texts from Jake as he is walking home asking if we should have Thai for dinner.  Their Chicken Pad Thai is my favorite.  In the summer it is really popular to get the food and go eat it on the rocks.  Jake has already mentioned that we need to find a Thai place when we move back to Olathe. 
Pizza here is very thin and if it isn't done right it gets soggy in the middle.  This pizza place is right down the street from us and it is pretty good.  I'd still choose Pizza Hut pan pizza over this but this place gets the job done.

Which one would you like to try?

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Linnea's Grandparents Visit Her in Sweden

Jake's parents decided to come see us before we moved back.  They got here on September 6th and spent three days with us before they went to Gotland for 5 days and then back with us for a couple of day before flying home.  We had a great time with them.

Singing songs with Grandma

The first day Jake's parents were here it rained most of the day so we decided to make prints of her hand and feet.  She wasn't very excited about it as you can tell.
 Our favorite apartments with a rainbow going over the top.

 Story time!

 Grandma feeding Linnea a bottle.
 Walking around downtown Stockholm.
Each night Jake's parents were in town I would feed Linnea around 7 and then we would go to dinner around 7:30.  We put her in her stroller already swaddled so we could just transfer her once we got back from dinner.  If it was a quick walk to dinner she would usually be awake when we got to the restaurant but then she would fall asleep while we were ordering.  If the walk/ride to dinner was 30 minutes or so she would usually fall asleep on the way to dinner.  Either way, she fell asleep around 8 and then slept until the next morning only waking up a few times and needing her pacifier to go back to sleep.  I would just transfer her to her box once we got home.  She was a champ at dinner!

She doesn't sleep in a bib but I left it on since she just ate and then went in the stroller.  The picture with all the blankets covering the side of her stroller bassinet is because the night before she might have spit up all over it so we were trying to prevent that from happening again.  I was so proud of her for sleeping through our dinners.  The noise of the restaurants didn't bother her one bit when she was trying to fall asleep or when she was already asleep.  She rocks!

 This might be the only picture I have of Linnea and her Grandpa when he isn't holding her :).
City Hall
 We stopped by Jake's work so he could show his parents around and then Linnea got to meet his coworkers. 

 Linnea was very interested.
After a boat ride and a visit to Jake's office the grandparents took Linnea so Jake and I could go on a date.  It was weird leaving her since I had been with her for almost a year if you count the time I was pregnant.  I've left her before with Jake for an hour or two but we haven't both been gone from her.

We had Indian food for lunch and then decided to get a massage.  We wanted to do something we couldn't do if we had Linnea so we thought about going to the movies but then decided we couldn't talk during a movie.  It was about 5 minutes into the massage when I realized we weren't doing much talking then since Jake was in another room.  Oops!  We really wanted to nap but since the grandparents were at home with Linnea we thought a massage was the next closest thing to a nap we could find.  It was great!  We were gone for about 3.5 hours and we were excited to see her when we got back.

Dinner at a Vietnamese restaurant called Spring Rolls.  It was delicious!
 It turns out Ken does smile for pictures . . . when he is holding Linnea.
 Worn out from all the play time with her grandparents. 

 Hmm . . . I'm not sure who is watching whom?
 On a walk . . . notice she isn't in the stroller.  Ken really likes walking babies around and showing them things.  Linnea also enjoyed it so much that now she doesn't think she needs to ride in her stroller.  Thanks to her Grandpa Ken she knows there is more to going on walks than what she can see in her stroller and she wants to soak it all in which is great . . . except when I'm by myself and she wants to be held all.the.time!
We tried recreating one of our favorite maternity pictures.
 This was in the evening so the lighting is way off but I think it turned out pretty good.

 Jake propped her up on her knees and she was so cute looking all around.

 Who needs to ride in a stroller when you have a grandpa?
 We had a great time hanging out with Jake's parents and I think that had fun too :).
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