Much the same as last month.

This month’s highlights include scout hikes (one that has already taken place and one to look forward to). And of course Ingrid is already looking forward to the two scout camps she’s going to attend this summer. Plus summer in general – she’s growing tired of school and homework and all that.

Current favourites:

  • Super short jeans shorts
  • The Sims 4 and Horizon: Zero Dawn
  • Katy Perry’s Bon Appetit




Already from a distance I could see that Ingrid was tired from the hike. She tends to get too little sleep on these things – can’t fall asleep, too cold during the night, has to get up for a trip to the loo, wakes up too early… I remind her every time to pack extra warm sleeping clothes, and every time she ignores the advice.

This afternoon she was close to collapsing, physically and mentally. She also insists that she is unable to fall asleep during the day. Well, I got Miss Unable To Sleep to lie down at least. She was fast asleep in ten minutes, and slept until I woke her three hours later.


This term’s last dance class. Ingrid loves disco dancing as much as ever and is talking about doing it twice a week the next term, one of which would be a preparatory class for competitive dancing.


We went shopping for clothes for the kids. Mainly for Ingrid, because when we sorted through her wardrobe the other week, we discarded almost all of its contents. Too small, too small, too colourful, too small, too many flowers. Our friends’ 6-year-old daughter will be getting a massive delivery of clothes. Ingrid, meanwhile, now has almost no summer clothes. Two pairs of shorts and three t-shirts, I think the total was, and maybe one or two dresses which she doesn’t wear very often.

While Ingrid tried on clothes, Adrian and I waited.

The whole family joined me for a walk along a circular route based on Sörmlandsleden, stage 15:2 and part of 15, between the old mine at Skottvång and lake Marviken.


The weather was cloudy and cool but otherwise fine. We saw blue anemones everywhere. The white ones were just starting to bloom, but they were camouflaged since their flowers only open in sunshine. I also saw a very early marsh marigold.

 

The kids did not enjoy the actual walking part too much, which was pretty much as expected. Luckily there was stuff for them to do and to look at.

At the beginning and end of the trail, near Skottvång, there were numerous works of art in the forest along the trail – odd constructions, plastic plants in unexpected places, funny road signs (pointing towards “tree”, “path”, “air”, “water”, “berries” etc), coffee cups hanging on trees, a modern rune stone, etc.

We stopped for lunch at a picnic spot just off lake Marviken, roughly at the halfway point, and made a fire to heat and cook our food.

There was no firewood at the picnic spot, but there was no shortage of dry branches in the forest nearby. I guess not many people had stopped there recently. The fireplace was a small one and we had no proper tools with us to cut the branches to size. I couldn’t find my camping knife when packing so I only had a little pocket knife with me, but that turned out to be enough for whittling down the thicker branches until I could snap them in two.


Our standard campfire food is “hike bombs”, a recipe I learned from Ingrid’s scout hikes: foil packages containing diced pre-cooked potatoes, vegetables etc. Easy to prepare, easy to pack, quick to cook, and delicious. Our version consists of potatoes, salmon, and broccoli. For dessert, we had “hike bananas”, which is also a traditional outdoor recipe in Sweden: bananas, slit and stuffed with pieces of chocolate, and then grilled.


Both kids enjoyed poking in the fire and putting on more branches, but Adrian was quite cautious about getting close to it. Somehow he nevertheless managed to get soot marks on his forehead, which Ingrid then turned into a war painting.


After lunch we passed and climbed a viewing tower. The tower was more fun than the viewing – the surrounding area is quite flat and all we could see was forest, looking the same in all directions.

 

The walk back felt shorter than the way out, because we made slingshots for the kids. Shooting and looking for projectiles kept them happily occupied almost all the way to the car.

We only had pieces of ordinary sewing elastic to work with, so the slingshots were neither powerful nor easy to use, but kids were happy as long as their stones flew a few metres. We’ll probably make new ones next time we’re out walking, so I’ll have to do some research to find a better material to use next time.


Recent official measurements by the school nurse: 136 cm, 31 kg. Unofficial current shoe size: 34-35.

Random facts:

  • Ingrid successfully manages and plans all of her school stuff herself. Homework, packed lunches for sports days, gym bag, and all other specials.
  • Ingrid uses her phone as a pocket computer. She plays games, posts on Instagram, etc. However she sort of forgets that it is a device meant for incoming communication as well. On the rare occasions when I actually try and reach her, after school while she is hanging out at “the club”, she almost never picks up and almost never notices my SMSs.
  • She likes fluffy, cool pillows – but when she goes to bed, she saves them “for later” and instead puts her head between the pillows so as to not squash them. Then of course she falls asleep there so the “later” never gets a chance to happen. Same with candy – she saves the best candy and eats the less good stuff first, so the best ones end up being thrown out because they are so old.
  • She likes looking at photos of herself, both baby photos and the things I post on the blog. She usually skips all photos and blog posts about other things.
  • We went through her wardrobe to sort out clothes she has outgrown or no longer likes. Almost everything went out, except blue jeans and a couple of tops and t-shirts. Almost everything was “too much colour”, “too many hearts”, etc. Skirts and tights are completely out. We will need to do a lot of shopping soon if she is to have anything to wear this spring and summer.

  • Favourite item of clothing: a lacy black dress
  • Favourite movie/video: The Amazing World of Gumball
  • Currently reading: Fröken Europa
  • Most recent movie: Boss Baby
  • Playing: Horizon: Zero Dawn, after seeing Eric play it, and Lego Harry Potter
  • Bedtime stories: Harry Potter book 5, and Howl’s Moving Castle (which I read to her in English, because she liked the movie)


We don’t have a habit of bringing back presents when we travel. But Arlanda Airport has a large Pocket Shop that sells sticker books that normal bookstores don’t have. The kids have been waiting for months for me to go on a flight so that I can buy sticker books for them.


I noticed Adrian’s fingers in yesterday’s photo. Dirty, uneven fingernails, ragged cuticles. Ingrid’s fingers look only a little bit better. My own cuticles are not very pretty either.

None of us pay much attention to our hands. I make them wash their hands before meals (and after meals as well since Adrian somehow always ends up with his hands in his food) and cut their fingernails when I notice them reaching monster claw size. Ingrid picks at the skin at her fingertips, and often tears away ragged nail edges instead of clipping them – out of pure laziness as far as I can tell. Adrian doesn’t seem to notice his fingers at all, ever.