Best right now:

  • Melodifestivalen and Sweden’s youngest master chef on TV
  • Harry Potter, still
  • Pokemons, still

Doing a lot of:

  • Qixels. Sort of like perler beads, but instead of ironing them together, you brush them with water and they sort of melt together, so Adrian can do it all on his own. Plus, there is a 3D version which involves a “gadget” to make the layers align with each other, which is extra interesting.
  • Reading. I brought more books from the library, but most “easy reading” books are frankly quite childish and boring, so Adrian has pretty much left those behind already. He’s now reading Maximus ring from the fantasy series Legenden om Ă–rnfolket (“The legend of the Eagle People”), which has got some proper adventure in it.
  • Talking. Especially at meal times. He can spend an hour “eating” dinner. Everybody else is long since done, we’ve cleaned up most of the kitchen, and he’s still at it.

Worst things ever:

  • That there are no fun, cheap Lego sets to be found in the stores. The ones he likes are in the 1000+ krona range, which, I tell him, are OK for birthdays and Christmas but not for just buying.
  • Having to shower. And then, once he’s actually in the shower, he can stay there for ages, playing with a wet washcloth and talking to himself.
  • That he never gets any interesting letters or magazines like the rest of the family. But he’s not particularly interested in any of the magazines Ingrid gets. It’s the concept of getting mail that’s enticing.

We went skating.

Adrian is now often the one who first proposes we go skating. Last winter he wouldn’t even try – and now he loves it.

They have outings at school every Thursday, and this week’s outing was a trip to the skating field. Even though the kids got no actual instruction, just skated around, he must have gotten lots of practice – he is so much faster and more confident on the ice than he was last time we were here. Last time he was mostly stepping on his skates; now he is actually gliding.

Those cute penguin skates are Ingrid’s and not Adrian’s. She loves all things cute, and these penguins are just awesome.

Both kids longed to play a board game, and we settled on Ticket to Ride, one of our favourite games. Even Adrian can now join in, with just a few adjustments.

It began well, but then as time passed, things started going downhill. Ingrid made a mistake (built the wrong route at one point) and then decided to get all huffy and sulky and took to throwing her cards when it was her turn. Adrian had increasing difficulties with sitting still and kept fidgeting and climbing around. My mother was constantly complaining about how worthless cards she kept getting. Eric and I made efforts to steer everyone back towards enjoying the game, then gave up on that and enjoyed ourselves only. Finally everybody else’s obvious non-enjoyment got to be too much for us as well, and we simply aborted the game and packed up.

Interestingly but not surprisingly, they complained about that as well. They all got some odd kind of pleasure out of their non-enjoyment of the game.

Adrian and I went out cycling and geocaching.

What kind of a winter is this, when we can cycle in the middle of January without winter tyres, because all the snow and ice has long since melted?

The temperature has been around zero for what feels like weeks. Today was no different. But even zero-ish temperatures can feel quite cold when you’re not dressed properly, as I was reminded today. I dressed for a day of normal cycling and hiking, but forgot to take Adrian’s pace into account. Walking with him is closer to standing still, in terms of energy expenditure – far from enough to keep me warm. Most of me was pretty OK but my fingers felt like they were going to fall off. Next time we do anything like this, I’ll take my warmest ski mitts.

We cycled to a small patch of relative wilderness just off of Bromma Airport. I was a bit concerned that it might be noisy there, because it’s right under the runway approach to the airport, but only a handful of smallish propeller planes passed over our heads and didn’t bother us at all.

I guess it might be quite pretty there under better circumstances, but now it was all dull brown shrubs and dead, dry grass. Adrian wasn’t the least bit bothered by that; he wasn’t there for the pretty views. He found a stick early on during our walk and had fun with it all the way. It was a flag that he planted on a stone. It was a walking stick. Best of all, it was an ice breaker. Every frozen puddle we came to, he picked and hammered into tiny pieces. (Until I got too cold and made him move along so we could get to our bikes and I could get my hands warm again.)

Oh, and that small area contained all of eight geocaches, of which we bagged five. Some were even easy enough for Adrian to find.

Adrian was sick yesterday and stayed home from school. This morning the state of his health was unclear, so he stayed home again. A few hours later it was clear that he was perfectly well. Which was good news for him, of course, but also meant I could take him with me to town and not miss my gym class.

While I lifted heavy things and got myself sweaty, he sat just outside and read a Pokemon book, drew and coloured using an iPad app, and built with Legos. At one point a friendly older gentleman sat down next to him. They talked, and he gave Adrian some advice on the Lego bridge that Adrian was building between a bench and a table. Both seemed to enjoy each other’s company.

(The construction is actually not just a bridge but an elevator combined with a bridge, Adrian told me.)

It still takes me a bit by surprise that he had no trouble at all entertaining himself for an hour. He is way better at this than Ingrid.

There are Pokemons at Coop.

Walking around with Adrian fully engrossed in Pokemon Go is not like normal walking. It goes in fits and starts, and he talks about nothing else, so it’s rather dull for me. But when Pokemon Go gets him out of the house, moving around in some fresh air, then it’s better than nothing.

Adrian is in a sewing mood. We’re making a Pikachu plushie, and we bought a book about sewing other Pokemon figures (that Adrian saw online and couldn’t stop thinking about). And while we’re at it, we’re making small mittens and a hat for a soft doll of his.

The Pikachu plushie is small and fiddly enough that us “sewing together” mostly means me doing the actual sewing. Adrian opines on design questions, and cuts. But for more straightforward seams – such as the mittens and hat – we’ve started working the sewing machine together. I navigate and Adrian presses the foot pedal. He doesn’t dare have his hands anywhere near the sewing machine needle.

He’s very cautious about the whole thing and quite worried of making a mistake of some sort. I push him a bit, and he does more than he dares, and enjoys it.

Swim school has started for this term.

We didn’t get a spot in the classes at Tenstabadet at first (fully booked in less than a day!) but just this week a free spot turned up, so we’re at Tenstabadet again after all. Which is great, because it is so convenient and nice – a quiet, small pool, and teachers Adrian is familiar with.