Sunday, 30 December 2012

Silly season

I guess the party season traditionally would end on New Years Eve, with some sort of occasion giving you reason to dress up, whether it's a big party or intimate dinner.
I doubt we will be dressing up much tomorrow though, since Nathan is on stand by early the next morning, and we have just planned a quiet family dinner at home.

It's ok, we've kind of had enough partying the last week anyway! Seven different functions just in the last week!
I've really enjoyed all the dressing up, especially since I had found a few new dresses in NZ that I was looking forward to wear. And when you can't rely on someone else is remembering to take your picture, there is always the trusty iPhone and the bathroom mirror!
I remembered to take a photo of all outfits, bar one:

I have two favourites, the first outfit to start, that black dress is absolutely gorgeous. (If you only knew the trouble I went through in NZ to get my hands on it... That's a story for another day though!)
I also liked the whole styling with the white dress. Not only is the dress to die for, but I was really happy how the hair turned out and how well my new earrings I got for Christmas went with it. I felt really pretty.

You gotta love silly season! Party on!

Friday, 28 December 2012

En sockerbagare här bor i staden

I love pepparkakor, it's one of my favourite things with Christmas. Especially served together with a glass of glögg and some blue cheese!
I've made my own dough in the past and it actually wasn't as tricky as I'd expected it to be. This year  I took the easy route and bought some ready made gingerbread dough at IKEA! Why complicate things when you don't have to?

Somehow we never got around to actually baking the pepparkakor, until yesterday! Linnea and I set out to make a lovely fresh batch, and we made kiwi birds, hearts, stars and rugby balls!
Apparently 0,5kg of gingerbread dough doesn't make a lot of pepparkakor, they didn't even last the day! :) UUhhmmmm!

Thursday, 27 December 2012

The Boxing Day Party

This year our Christmas celebrations actually stretched all the way until Boxing Day, since we had a Christmas Lunch to go to. So party heels on, hair up and more eating - and more champagne..!

Lunch time:

Dessert table:

And while all the eating and drinking was going on downstairs, all the younger boys in different ages were busy upstairs doing their thing, PSP:

The girls were outside playing in the play house, jumping on pogo sticks and riding scooters, but I didn't manage to get any snapshots of them.

It was another lovely afternoon in the company of good friends and good food! Thank you Sparrows!

Christmas Day 2012

After another tradition, Christmas Eve evening at the Morris' house (this year slightly more subdued than normal... I blame the snaps!) it was time for something that felt like just a quick rest - before it was time to open the presents Santa had brought!
It was an early start to Christmas Day, but what can you expect - it's Christmas!!

Lucas had picked out a beautiful musical jewelery box for Linnea, that she could keep all her new earrings in. It played the music from the 'Nutcracker'.

The Roses had sent some gifts from Smiggle, just the things the kids had seen in Singapore, wasn't that a coincidence..!

The kids also got some new clothes, and Linnea got several pairs of earrings.

They got a Santa each from Mormor, but we still haven't received the main Swedish Christmas parcel, so there is more to come.

Lucas and Ben were playing with these Halo guys in NZ, so Grandma had sent some more of those for Lucas:

There was also some books the kids had wished for, the newest 'Diary of a Wimpy kid' f.e, and Linnea had picked out a Tanya Batt book for Lucas in NZ, that we weren't able to buy when she was here in October.

There wasn't a huge amount of presents actually this year, because we figured after they'd opened their big gift, they wouldn't be much interested in anything else... And we were right! :)

Later in the morning we tried to play the new Monopoly game. Although this is a version with credit cards instead of real cash, which both kids thought was pretty cool; it really shows our kids are of a new generation... They can spend hours on their computers or iPads, but more than 30 minutes on a "real" board game really is testing their patience! Needless to say we never managed to actually finish the game...

Later in the afternoon, it was time to suit up again and go for a bit of a BBQ at the Turners. It was really nice not to have too much pressure on this Christmas Day, it was just a chilled, relaxed evening.

Their kids had got 'Furbies' for Christmas, but I'm not sure who had most fun with them, the kids or Tash! All I know is I want one! :)

We had Will's famous BBQ lamb for dinner, yum, yum, yum!

No dinner at their house is complete without Pavlova, of course! We also enjoyed a little bit of an experiment from my side - Gingerbread Kladdkaka! It was delicious!

What a nice Christmas day!

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Our Swedish Julafton 2012

When you are an expat, you tend to tie your friends a little bit closer to you, than "just" being friends, they become your family.
Traditionally we celebrate our Christmas Eve at the Scotts, with the rest of the "crew"; our friends that are like aunties and uncles to our kids, and their children that have all become like cousins - all the kids have known each other for most (or for the younger ones, all) of their life.

It's of course an extra nice tradition for me, since it's Swedish Julafton celebrations, with Swedish food and Swedish traditions!

We've only missed it once, which was when we were away in Dubai last year over Christmas. This year it was all back to normal though, and we were all very excited to be there.

After quite a bit of glögg (I see it as my duty to finish it off when everybody else gives it up for champagne..!), Anna briefed all her guests on 'protocol'! There are usually new additions to the guest list every year, and since we take our 'Julbord' very seriously, ha ha, everybody needs to know in what order you are supposed to eat the different food!

So much lovely food!
I had brought the beetroot salad, Janssons Frestelse and 7,5kg (!) of Swedish meatballs, definitely non-halal! My own favourites on the 'Julbord' is the herring, the ham and the prinskorv, yum!

This year there was 45 of us, and everybody seemed to enjoy their Swedish culinary experience, most went back several times, and some even dared to try the snaps!

After dinner Santa made an appearance! It was a bit unexpected, so the kids got super excited!

He had help from his elf Amelia, together they distributed gifts to all the children...

... who sat nicely and waited for their turn in the sofas:

Then the opening frenzy started!

Lucas made a new friend:

And Linnea had been allowed to change her earrings for the first time, to the horse ones she had picked out in NZ, just for this occasion:

It was a lovely, lovely Julafton - Thank you again Scott Family!