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Sunday, 31 August 2014

the week that was

I know, I know, I keep taking you to Stourhead, but it is such a good place to take grandchildren during holiday. They have the freedom here to run around and explore. 
A week ago it felt like winter, and in fact, we had the heating on couple of evenings! But it is getting warmer again.
There are no blossoms at Stourhead at this time of year, but some of the colour is beginning to look quite autumnal.

Back at home little fingers are busy with a felting needle and using pastry cutter as a guide, making decoration for a purse.


I still haven't got back to sewing since back from our holiday. I actually took a box with 3 projects away with me, but none of them had seen the light of day! I am doing some knitting though, working on another 6 squares for my blanket. I hope to show you those soon.

I did some baking yesterday, I made almond and vanilla biscuits, a Norwegian recipe from this book.



                                 and after

They smell divine and are so delicious! But most of them actually made it into the biscuit jar  - for now anyway!

This morning was warm enough for us to have our breakfast in the garden! Heaven!
Our garden has done well, considering that this is the first year and that it was little neglected while we were away. Our neighbour looked looked after it, but the weather was so bad, that it was out of his hands.

the fig is doing very well  with lots of new growth

the crab apple tree is really showing off, so young and so many apples,

which will all turn red with the coming of the autumn    

There is still lots of colour in the garden.

Two new additions to our garden, purchased yesterday


and anemone "Wild Swan"

isn't she a beauty?

The coming week should get brighter and warmer again, so we could be in for a nice September.

In the meantime, have a good week!

© 2014

Monday, 25 August 2014

Sweden 2014 - part 3

Our son and his wife to be flew in to joined us for few days, and together we made a trip to pretty Askersund, a town at the top of the Lake Vättern, where we enjoyed a family lunch together.

There were other days out, of course, some of the places we visited before, on our previous trips to Sweden, and you can read more in "Sweden 2010" and "Sweden 2012" under My Labels on the left.

One of my favourite places to visit, for obvious reasons, is a small town of Hallekis, on the shore of lake Vänern.

These cottages were once occupied by workers from the local cement works.
Now they are rented during the summer to various artists and so it is now a street of small craft shops,
where you can find some unique works of art to take home.

I never leave here without "a thing or two",
this time I found this lovely handmade table runner,

a window or wall hanging in traditional design,

and a cute fridge magnet, made of wood.

Not far from here is Sjotorp, where the start of the Göta Canal is.

This huge project, built in the 19th century, completed the waterways connection across
Sweden, between Baltic and North Sea. If you click on the link above, you can read about its history.

Back in Hjo park we were even treated to "a concert in the park".
During one of the the weekends we had an opportunity to visit Hjo Accordion Festival,
a meeting of accordion players from various parts of Scandinavia.

Free, just bring a chair (or a wheelchair).

We were probably in younger age group attending, but it was a pleasant hour spent, on the beautiful summer day, on the shore of the lake.

Even this bus fitted in :-)

Sadly, like all holidays, this one was coming to its end.
Just a small stop on the way back; 

Gekås, apparently the largest attraction in Sweden, the largest Scandinavian Superstore!
You can find just about anything here and at very good prices.
But, more interesting for me, just opposite, recently opened Panduro Hobby shop, or rather moved from smaller premises since my last visit 2 years ago. Panduro is not very cheap usually, but there are very good prices in their outlet shop. Unfortunately (or fortunately for my purse), there wasn't much time...

And so, some 1,600 miles later, return journey, but choosing a short ferry from Sweden to Denmark instead of the Oresund Bridge, to catch 18 hour DFDS ferry back home. For the last time.

During this year's visit we managed to get together with our Swedish friends of 30 years, our children, their children, and this time also grandchildren.
Will we ever be back? Who knows.......

Thank you, Sweden, for another lovely holiday! 

© 2014

Sunday, 24 August 2014

Sweden 2014 - part 2

                         This is a view in the direction of our holiday village across the lake Mullsjön.

Although there are mainly holiday and weekend cottages here, some of the people are living here permanently, as are our hosts.

Let me take you on a tour of our surroundings.

Most of the cottages here are of traditional design and colours.

Our grandchildren spent many hours at the Hjo outdoor swimming pool, which by the way, was free.

This picture was taken in the late afternoon at the end of our holiday, when the weather was changing, and it was becoming more typical of late Swedish summer.

The pool is next door to the Hjo harbour

and our favourite ice cream place.

(Hjo is pronounced the same as "you" )

© 2014
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