The sweetest thing he said all month: “I love it when I make you laugh.”

Some wonderfully interesting random thoughts that he has had:

  • What if kissing made your teeth clean [so you wouldn’t need to brush them]?
  • How come the clock’s hands don’t fall down when they are pointing at, say, eleven?
  • Why is it called the Eiffel tower, and what is an Eiffel anyway?
  • You cannot take back what you did, because you already did it. But you also cannot change what you will do, because it hasn’t happened yet.

All these ideas and questions are frantically spinning around in his head all the time. And they all need to come out, so he talks all the time, until I feel like my ears are going to fall off. Anything else he is doing – laying the table, eating dinner, getting ready for bedtime – can take forever because he has so much more interesting things to think about.

Bedtime in particular is something he struggles with. While I read and sing for him, he interrupts all the time, and climbs around in his bed. Then, after we turn off the light, he keeps talking and moving around – and then suddenly it’s like a switch is flicked and he’s asleep. Whereas I gradually drift off, he goes straight from talking to such deep sleep that a minute later I can walk around and drop things and loudly close the door, and he doesn’t notice anything.

Likes:

  • Fidget spinners. (No surprise there.)
  • Words that sound funny. Pikadoll. Puerto Rico.
  • Pokemons. I think they occupy at least half his brain all the time, and all of his brain half of the time. The Pokemon animated series is all he watches on his iPad, and he can tell me endless facts about which type evolves into which other type, and what attacks they have. He is saving up his allowance to buy more Pokemon cards. He throws imaginary Pokeballs at real pigeons to pretend that he is catching a Pidgey.
  • Maths. He now understands both multiplication and division, and can happily inform me that eight divided by four is two. He doesn’t know the actual times table by heart though, so he can only do it with small numbers. But he has a strong instinctive feel for how these things work. He asked me what nine times six is (because he had already calculated that a Rubik’s cube has nine tiles on each side, and six sides) and when I said that it’s ten times six, minus one six, he figured it in his head out straight away. He challenges himself to not use his fingers at all – he said that he sometimes doesn’t actually move them but thinks of moving them instead.
  • Reading Bamse. It’s the first thing he does in the morning and the last thing he does at night. He finds it very frustrating that new issues only come out once every three week, while Ingrid’s Kalle Anka comes every week.
  • Singing bits and pieces of his favourite songs even though he doesn’t understand the lyrics. Justin Timberlake’s Can’t stop the feeling, Sia’s Cheap thrills (“Hit the dance floor, hit the dance floor…”)


For another two weeks, Adrian spends his days in summer care. Too bad grown-ups don’t get 10 weeks of summer break.

Ingrid is too old for that, so she has to simply stay at home. I’m working from home some days to keep her company, and leaving her on her own for some days. Today was one of the latter. She of course stays inside all day, even though it’s a beautiful day. So when I get home, I chase her off the sofa to go with me to pick up Adrian.

Summer care is in a different location than normal school, and it’s a slightly longer trip. Still no more than 10 minutes by bike, even at the kids’ leisurely place.

There is a large, fun climbing structure in that schoolyard, so instead of cycling straight home, we stayed and climbed for a while. (It was large enough to support mums, too.)


Adrian loves building things, and has been asking me for a long time to build something in wood together with him. He’s also been asking for a bed for one of his toys. Today we had a woodworking day when we got both projects done.

I built a minimalist four-poster doll bed. The four-poster bit was essential and actually what got this project started – Adrian had a bunch of small bead projects that he wanted to hang over the doll, so it can look at them while it’s waiting for sleep.

Adrian built a boat. He did the design, we measured together, I cut and drilled, and finally Adrian screwed all the pieces together. Then he ran off with it before I got a chance to photograph the final result.

I like the way Adrian’s imagination works. He takes a piece of thick plank for the bottom, adds a section of square rod as a mast, and there’s his boat! He did add more detail to this one (two more pieces of rod for railings, a little post with a wooden button for a wheel, a block as a cabin) but in his mind it was already a boat without those. If I was asked to build a boat, I would probably aim for something more clearly boat-shaped, which would be a lot more work.



I have so little time to just be in the garden, especially recently. Or to just be, period. So I make sure we take our meals outside when possible. Sometimes the kids (especially Adrian) grumble over the extra distance they have to carry everything (at least 10 extra metres each way, poor kids!) or about the sun or the heat, but I overrule them.

The deck on the east side of the house gets sunshine in the morning, and it usually isn’t too hot at that time of the day. By lunchtime we get shade from the cherry tree so we don’t get baked. We’ve arranged furniture in such a way that we can get the juice and butter out of the sun, and we have a power outlet so we can plug in the toaster as well, so we have all we need.


Today was the last day of school, which the school celebrates the same way each year, with singing by the kids and speeches by the staff and other ceremony as well. It was sweet the first time I saw it and has gradually come to feel more and more boring and routine.

We have a tradition of our own, to celebrate the beginning of summer break with conveyor belt sushi in Kista, which we also did this year. After that the kids tried out the VR rigs at the mall at Kista, mostly on Ingrid’s initiative. Ingrid enjoyed the experience as much as she had expected; Adrian found it a bit scary and nauseating.


We skipped the traditional national day picnic and replaced it with a sausage grilling hike around lake Källtorpssjön near Hellasgården.

It was a beautiful day for walking – warm and sunny without being too hot. We walked mostly through the usual Swedish rocky pine forest, with the occasional beautiful clifftop view of the whole lake. The trail was nice and varied, following the edge of the lake at times and getting deep in between trees at other times, and had just the right amount of ups and downs to remain interesting. The parts nearest the parking lots were relatively crowded, but there were fewer people further away, on the other side of the lake.

The trail’s only shortcoming was a lack of suitable picnic spots. Finally by early afternoon we were so hungry that we set up our picnic and grill right next to the path. I have a love-hate relationship with single-use aluminium grills: they seem so incredibly wasteful, but at the same time they are so incredibly convenient. And the grilling is an absolutely essential part of a hike for the kids, almost the whole point of it.

The kids had packed binoculars and were amazed at how much closer things seemed when looking through those. The binoculars also allowed us to spy on follow the progress of a swimmer who swam all the way across the lake to one of the islets and then back, towing a very visible red buoy which made him/her easy to spot.


It’s a squeeze day and I was going to take the day off but the situation at work just did not allow that.

But I did leave the office early enough in the afternoon that we had time for ice cream in the garden and running around in the grass.


He builds fast and big, without any visible plan or design. He knows that triangles make for a strong construction, and just piles random triangles on top of each other until he runs out of pieces. And then suddenly, magically, it’s a castle, or an obstacle course, or a prison.


We went to see the Miro exhibition at Waldemarsudde. Nice weather, nice walk, nice lunch at the café, another nice walk to a nice fika afterwards at Rosendal – but the exhibition itself was underwhelming. “Yep, Miro, black squiggles” was what I got out of it. I don’t know what was lacking – perhaps Miro himself is old news now, or perhaps the works just weren’t presented the right way.