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Screen time: prefer quality over quantity

Monday evening on Earth.

It’s becoming very dark early nowadays in Sweden, so it’s easy to pick up the phone or the computer instead of going outside and take a run. Well, I can say that I run a lot when it’s lighter, but I don’t even feel the same “urge” to start up Netflix and watch series.

But! If you have to start a screen, I can recommend you to watch Better call Saul , a spin off of Breaking bad. We watched BB a way back in time in Linköping. Att the beginning, I thought it was a bit slow but then, it became totally crazy in a good way. Better call Saul is great! I just want to watch again BB but it’s too much seasons. But there is so much dark evenings to come…

See the light in the dark

Saturday on Earth. It has been a week with a lots of work, but I managed to reflect as well. It’s not always easy to do when the to-do-list is long but it’s very important for me to know where I’m heading to.

Yesterday afternoon, while we still were at work, my husband and I received a message from some friends who invited us for dinner the same evening. Think: we, small children parents, would within some hours only, put our normal Friday evening upside down to enjoy some nice company. Z did not understand why she would have clothes instead of pyjamas after her shower and why we would go out, but when we arrived at our friends place, she saw her little friend and she forgot all the unusual. They are now big enough to play on their own, but they are not playing together yet.

We, parents, talked about life since we last met and somehow, it’s very comforting to share everyday life small troubles with otherd to realize that everyone has the same situations to deal with.

I really appreciated the evening and around 21, we took the bus back home. We jumped into the first buss coming around and made a whole trip in the city. We closed the evening with walk in the dark and I got this reflexion:

Even if it seems dark all around, there is always a little bit of light to show you the way.

So it is! Even if it’s hard sometimes to make things work, there is always something to learn about it and you can grow from it.

Even if the past weeks were not easy, I’m thankful for the experiences, from which I’ve becoming bigger. The only shadow I see right now is that my body may signal me that I need to be careful: I got some signs of shingles I need to take seriously. Rest on the program.

Do you see the light when you’re in the dark?

Go outside from your comfort zone

Today, at work, I made something unusual. I talked in front of 500 People. I was a bit nervous about it but prepared. When it was time for me to climb on the stage, I felt calm and I think I made an ok prestation. Afterwards, I felt really tired, but happy!

So go sometimes outside from your comfort zone, you will be astonished!

Let yourself grow

The routine is taking us down on Earth every day of the week here. Groundhog day. You know, alarm, news on the radio, bathroom, breakfast, teeth brushing, transportation to preschool / work, work, transportation back home, fixing dinner, eating dinner, cleaning after dinner (not to underestimate with a 21 months old at home), bathroom, pyjamas, book reading or play, news on the TV, girl in the bed, one hour of TV watching while knitting and saying through the door “sleep now, you’ll swing tomorrow”, going to bed, wanting to scroll more but deciding not to switch your filter off, listening to a podcast and sleeping after 3 minutes. This is about it every day of the week. I want to put some exercise in my weeks and more creativity but it asks planning (and motivation bigger than just ideas).

So why wouldn’t I let myself grow? I keep on thinking I could do something creative during my free time but it always ends with “no-time-excuse”. Why actually? Isn’t it important enough to me? What do I want to do during my last years on Earth? (Yesh, even if they may be several, they still are my last years on here).

When did you let yourself grow last time?

Don’t be afraid to jump

I cannot describe myself as a scared person. I barely see the risks of what I’m doing, I prefer manage the consequences when they occur instead. Well, I was like that when I was younger. On the other hand, I had not much to loose.

Nowadays, I’m much more kind of a coward. There are much more things that are freaking me out. My biggest fear is of course not being healthy enough to help Z to grow up. But beside this, I do not challenge myself very much nowadays.

If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve already got.

Simple? Oh no! Not to me. What can I do differently? And what for?

I want to get a balanced life, with time for my family, my friends, myself and my creativity, a smile on my lips when I go to work and new situations to learn from. I already have a gold mine (according to me) but somehow, I’m longing for more. Well, so far, I’ll keep trying to have my balance.

Are you afraid to jump?

3 years of living at the same place

Three years ago, we got the keys of your current flat, after a summer in a cabin in Knivsta. It was time for us to get shower every day, a warm flat and more space. Well needed if you ask me, but I even needed the vaccination against my will to have a house now. When you look at our calenders, we wouldn’t have managed the maintenance of a house.

So 3 years of living in this flat and in Uppsala, how does it feel? Well, OK. It’s a pretty ok-city. A little bigger than Linköping (where we were living before), it’s not New York either. The bad side of it is that the Nature is a bit farther, so my runs are not that beautiful that they were in Linköping (we were living at the edge of a big natural reserve).

It has only been a week since M got a job in Uppsala itself, he has been taking the train to Stockholm, eating 3 hours of every day there). I got my job 10 min of bike from home. Maybe now, when M is more at home, we will get to extend our knowledge about the city. So far I have to admit that I cannot judge so much. I have not been very curious of the surroundings, we have no car, so every trip outside of the city is a bit difficult (so it’s never done). Let’s see if we stay here long?

Somehow, I don’t know how long we will stay here. The longest time I lived in the same place, it was in Eskilstuna (5 years) and then in Linköping (4 years, two different appartments). For me the future is bigger than the place you live in. I also have to admit that I’m getting tired of the winters here. The “natives” are longing for snow but I’m longing for no complicated mornings with clothes and equipments. I want to live easier and to be honest the weather here is not making it easy, at least not for me. I’m getting to old to adapt myself. But since I should not complain, I just try to get along with it.

Uppsala is much more practical to travel home (or everywhere) than Linköping was. The airport (Arlanda) is like 45 minutes with the bus, picking us up 100 m from home. Easy peasy. Uppsala is also much closer to Stockholm but this is useless since we are too tired to do something else than going to bed after 20 every day.

What did we change with our furnitures in three years? Well, we bought beds for Z (2 already but we hope that she will keep the one she has now a while, it’s 1m6 long).

We bought a soffa which can be a bed, which is in our library. When we got guests, they have a 1m60 bed to sleep in, with direct access to our balcony. On the balcony, we reused the same furnitures, but we changed a seat in a table. It’s working.

We are not using the balcony so much since it’s morning light on it. Except this summer, it’s most of the time too cold. We even wonder if we will close it.

In our bedroom, we have exactly the same furnitures than before, and even got to put a table there, where I’m sitting at right now, for some papper work. We don’t use it so much, but sometimes, it’s usefull. We got to change the chair though, my back hurts after 10 minutes sitting on this kneeling chair. It’s described to be good for the back and everything, but I can’t manage it.

In the living room, we got a giant TV with the flat, and this is our biggest new furniture. We use it both for TV but mostly for streaming and the radio and CD-player is connected to the sound system, so it’s good stuff. Thank you previous owner to have bought that and sold it to us, but when it will break, we probably won’t be able to pay the reparations. Let’s enjoy as long as it last!

In the kitchen, I sorted out tons of ustensils. We only have things now that we really use. We received a Stokke Tripp Trapp chair for Z when she was born and we have been using it a lot. She had a baby set, meaning that she was able to be with us from the very beginning when we were having dinner. Later, we got this toddle thing and now, she just sits on the chair. Sometimes she escapes, so we now and then reinstall the toddle thing. Very pratical chair, easy to clean (and you don’t have to underestimate this when you get a kid learning how to eat…).

Bathroom? Again, things for Z and a lots of sorting out but no more new things.

So 3 years in this flat, we like it and use every room of it (106 square meters) almost every day and it fits our family.

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You shall be creative

One week since I had the time to sit and write a little. The weeks just pass by and we just have the time to survive them it seems.

Right now, it’s very intense. M just began at his new job, Z is trying to accept the preschool as good as she can and I’m struggling with a lots of work and wills and my days only have 24 hours.

The other day, when I was going home, I saw this car on a parking lot. Someone had been very creative and it made me smile. Actually, even if there is a lots of things happening around, it’s not impossible to make it easier to get through with a little bit of humor and creativity.

Z is a good teacher for that. Even if she is in a period when “no” is her most common word (and she means it…), she even manages to see beautiful things through the every day life. She gets curious of everything and doesn’t care if someone else wants something else. She just enjoys. I should do more like her. I mean, of course I’ll go to work on time and do my work there, but if the days could be a little more joyfull, it would be nice-o.

Challenge for this week: you shall be more creative! Good luck!

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Don’t miss your own train

Monday on earth. This day is a celebrations day, when M and I decided to officially say yes to each other. Memorable. But now to something else.

I forced myself to go outside for 10 minutes during the lunch time today. It was all cold but so sunny.  It would have been easy to just sit in the kitchen at work and talk away these minutes to unecessary talk. Don’t missunderstand me, I like my colleagues very much, but in the pressure and stress I live in today, I need fresh air in the middle of the day. This article from New York times (not really new, january 2015) describes how two groups had to walk (different program for each group) and everyone found it made them more efficient at work during the afternoon. Then, a lots of them aknowledged that they did not maintain this habbit. Of course. But don’t missunderstand me, I’m not better at all. I begin with an exception tomorrow because of a all day meeting.

But I don’t want to miss my own train. I don’t want to waste hours of thoughts and take the stress with me at home because I was not able to make as much as I wanted during the day. I want to achieve things but at a normal rythm. So I’ll try not to come late to my station and continue my travel through life with the head out of the open window of an old fashioned train. I want my train to be like the orient express, to drive slowly through gigantical landscapes, to stop when it’s too beautiful to see in movment and to enjoy others company at the restaurant wagon, while watching around how beautiful the world is.

Will you miss own train?

Find your own stream

A good Sunday is half gone, but we made funny things. We woke up early, and took the train to Stockholm to go to the aquarium. Z enjoyed the whole thing, even taking the tramway for the first time.

When we were watching as the fishes, it strucked me how difficult it is not to follow the stream. I mean, when I watched the fishes, the predators had no problem to swim all alone in whichever direction. The little ones, who usually are eaten by others swim together. It’s fine as well, but what do a little fish if he/she wants to make something else? (If he/she remembers…)

You don’t need to be a predator to swim in your own stream. You just need a little more courage than the normal little fish and swim away. You can stay close to your group if you want, but find your own stream, the will to make what you like will help you to conquer your fears.

The wild is everywhere

It is now exciting to make scenes with Z’s toys. She has enough humor to laugh at it or at least notice it. This elk got lost in some flowers on the kitchen table. He doesn’t move anymore, too much food at once it seems.

Wild things, to me it’s like laughs. When I’m relaxed, I laugh at much. When I’m stressed, I don’t. When I was younger, I was known for a high noyced laugher. Now, I barely can’t remember when it was the last time I laughed so much that I couldn’t talk. Well, yes, I actually remember: this was this messenger talk between my parents and us when we used these ridiculous filters. I made some screenshots and when I look at it now, I can laugh as well. Yeah!