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I feel rather boring these days. Cleaning the bathroom, inventorying my library and working do not make for scintillating blog fodder. And yet, here it is, into the second week of April, and I had been trying to write more. What happened to that?

We have had very changeable weather lately. All possibilities within the space of an hour: sun, warmth, wind, rain, snow, hail, you name it. As we say, if you don't like the weather in Sweden, just wait five minutes. But it IS warming. Despite the frost on the ground overnight, the trend is definitely upwards. Martin and I went for walks this weekend and you can see the green, swollen, just ready to explode. I think one more week ought to do it. My eyes ought to have exploded by then, as well, or maybe I just wish they would: GAH the itching.

I haven't been able to breathe for a couple of days, despite taking allergy meds and nasal spray. Allergies are miserable, and again, NOT scintillating blog fodder.

It's a short week, though, since we had yesterday off as well. I guess that counts for something. The kids both had today off, too, which I thought rather unfair.

Thursday is book group. I'm looking forward to it, as I think the book we read will make for a good discussion. There are 13 people signed up, which is about average. The next one, in May, I'm hosting. I actually dislike hosting book group... I always feel like I'm missing the discussion because I'm getting food things ready. This time, I think I'll get it all done in advance AND put it out first so people can nibble while we talk. If it's nice, we can be out on the deck, but if so, I'll have to power wash the bird shit off first.

That's the only bad thing about the bird feeders. They're too close to the deck and the pheasants and the bigger birds hop about and poop everywhere. We're almost out of bird feed...I think I have enough to fill the feeder once more. ICA isn't selling bird feed anymore, which I think is a little early. Anders says I'm spoiling the birds by feeding them once it's spring, but I do like watching them. We always jump up and wave our arms to scare off the crows and jackdaws. They can forage elsewhere, the greedy guts. I don't mind the pheasants so much, but I really like the little songbirds and sparrows, and the occasional woodpecker. We don't have the variety that ozswede enjoys, but I like them all the same.

Must get serious about the garden... at least cleaning up the beds, clipping the roses and the heather and finishing the pots. I have to remember to get net for the cherry tree again, too. After last year's bumper crop, I've got a hankering for summer cherries again. There aren't even barely buds on it yet, but they're coming, too.

I think I shall take my itchy eyes and stuffy nose to bed now. I hope all is well in your world and your prose is more scintillating than mine. Shouldn't be too hard, I don't wonder.
mood: tired
music: none, just me

From Megsie

See? I LOVE your posts. I love picturing the bird shit...and the pheasants...I can see your weather, because ours is mirroring it at the moment. I made the mistake of wearing flip-flops to work today. Brrr. But once I was inside, I was happy with them. Lots of things on my TO DO list for work right now, home is getting the shaft. I always find time to read your blog though. I hope your allergies go away soon. No fun!

Sending hugs to you! xoxoxoxxoooxxx

Re: From Megsie

hahaha! You love picturing the bird shit? Girl, you need to get out more! :D

Oh poor you suffering with pollen allergies. We were in Stockholm the other week and L-G's eldest son was in agony with swollen eyes, running nose, sneezing fits etc as he is allergic to birch pollen. In Sweden! Poor guy :( He said the usual stuff isn't working for him this year and he's been forced to reluctantly go down the path of prescription steroids to control it. I hope you get relief soon.

I sympathise with the bird droppings. We have the same problem, but I figure it's a small price to pay to see the birds feed. Even if they are just tiny sparrows, I don't mind - I still love to watch them. Spoiling the birds? Don't tell Anders that I feed mine 12 months of the year and even in summer, it's full of life (and freeloaders). Usually hardware stores and places like Granngården or anything that sells feed will stock bird seed all year round.

A couple of books I've read lately that you might like are David Nicholls Us and Ian McEwan The Children Act.

I had a doctor tell me once, years ago, when I was in getting help with the allergies, that most people who move to Sweden end up developing allergies to birch, because there is so much of it here.

I'll check out the book recs, thanks!

What's the book you'll be discussing this time?

We'll be visiting G's mother next week, any chance you're headed into Malmö one of those days or on the weekend? One of his cousins used to loan us a car but they sold their second car so I don't think we'll be getting out of Malmö much. Except for me, that is, I'm scooting up to see Beverly in Uppsala for a night! Girl's night out, Swedish edition!

We're discussing The Circle by Dave Eggers. It creeped me out. When will you be available? I'll check and see as I'm not in Malmö all that much.

I don't know our whole schedule yet. I'm away Wednesday and Thursday, I think G has plans for us on Friday but I'm not sure about the weekend yet. Don't try to make a trip in to Malmö though if you weren't going for some other reason. I'll shoot you a message once I know better but as you well know, these quick visits on the other side of the pond are often eaten up by family hang time.

Regarding allergies (since I'm unfortunately all-too-familiar with the agony): a doctor suggested to me taking a tablespoon per day of honey produced from local bees. There is apparently some sort of magic that bees generate in the process of turning pollen to honey that helps humans build up a natural immunity to pollen. I do this with my tea along with taking allergy medicines (some people can possibly get by with the honey alone) and I have noticed an improvement in my symptoms. It takes a week or two for any allergy remedy to "load" and start helping, so start taking things a little in advance of when you expect your personal allergens to explode for the best results. Good luck!


I have just read over my first LJ entries from late 2003 and I have to say that my life is almost unchanged - as is my way of writing about it - despite all the intervening years. Don't be hard on yourself. It's your way of expressing what you think, feel and do that makes people come back to read what you are writing! :-)

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I can complain because rose bushes have thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.

Abraham Lincoln

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