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GATHER NEAR TO US ONCE MORE
You know, I love living overseas. I've lived overseas for 17 years, give or take a few weeks. 17 years! Not all at once, and not all in the same place but still, that's a significant portion of my life...especially considering I'm...only 29.

I like living in Europe. I like living in Sweden. There isn't much I dislike about it (and even less I'd admit to in public). But the thing I dislike MOST about living overseas? Living so far away from my family. And the hardest? Putting my mom on the train and waving goodbye as she leaves for the airport after her visit.

She's the family member who has visited us the most during our 11 years in Sweden. My brother has been up many times since he moved to Germany, and my sister has been twice, but there's something impossibly hard about saying farewell to my mom when she leaves. Even though this time, she's actually coming back for a couple of days again after the holidays (on her return trip from spending Christmas and New Year's in Germany with John), it's never enough. She was here for 3 weeks and it wasn't enough.

*sigh*



The holidays are upon us. Tomorrow is my mother-in-law's birthday so we're heading to their house for afternoon fika, and then will be back there again on Christmas Eve to celebrate the Swedish julafton. The Swedes have a thing about celebrating their holidays on the EVE OF, instead of on the DAY OF. Thus, Christmas is celebrated on Christmas EVE, Easter on Easter EVE, etc. It's very strange at first, but you get used to it, and in a bi-cultural family, it makes all the holidays twice as long, which is a nice thing when you enjoy them (and I suppose, when you enjoy your in-laws). Then we have Christmas American-style on Christmas Day...though we've already opened all the presents from my mom before she left.

Anders' sister's family are coming in the evening on the 25th and we'll be serving a Swedified traditional dinner: turkey with stuffing and mashed potatoes and green bean casserole and red cabbage...and we found a recipe for dessert that looks and sounds delicious: Kolapaj med bär. Caramel pie with berries. Yum!

Bippity Boppity Bootiful Birthday Wishes to Laini!
 melancholy
mood: melancholy
music: Mel & Kim—Rocking Around the Christmas Tree
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Comments

Great picture Liz! :) I believe the reason Swedes celebrate on the Eve of a holiday is due to them being Scandanavian. The Old Norse considered sunset to be the beginning of the next night (day), which is why times were listed in how many nights, and not how many days. So yes, Christmas should start at sunset on the 24th. ;) Being bi-cultural, your family and kids get the benefit of that... heh

Tack sao mycket, for the books too. Being a voracious reader, one can never have too many. The ones you sent were good selections and I will enjoy a little escapism, from time to time... *grins*

Frohe Weinachten, God Jul, Merry Christmas! May this holiday season bless you and your family, with happiness, health and wealth!

You're welcome! Merry Christmas, and yes, my kids are getting the most out of their bi-cultural heritage when it comes to extending Christmas for several days :)

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