Tag-Archive for » Stavanger «

We live in a place where horses romp on the beach.

 

Some days are beach days, and there’s nothing else to be done other than to drive your toes into the sand.
(I would say “warm” sand, but hey, this is Norway ;) )
So we grabbed our new American friends, the Yates, and had ourselves a beachy afternoon at Hellestøstrand.
This horse was having a grand old time.
Partners in pregnant-hood. Erin is due the month after me.

 

Preikestolen

After getting back from our fantastic weekend at Bjergøy we had a day to “rest” before we jetted off on the next round of our adventures with the Hills in town. And by “rest” I mean mom and dad Hill got to rest while we dragged Emma up a mountain to sit on top of a cliff. Because that’s just what you have to do when you visit Norway!

Summer was definitely in full swing! We’ve never seen so many people swimming at the swimming hole!
The traditional feet-over-the-edge shot.
Queen of the rock, Emma!
Hello little baby bump! Glad you could join us on this lovely summer day now that your secret is officially out in the open!

 

Easter Break

Looking back it feels like March and April were just one big whirlwind of cake, cake, and more cake. We were so blessed to have so many orders to fill so soon after opening, but Katrine and I hadn't figured out our groove yet and unfortunately took on too many orders for the two of us to sanely handle. We got everything done we needed to, but it meant a lot of 70 hour work weeks and we were completely and utterly exhausted and very close to our breaking point by the time Easter rolled around. Fortunately, Easter is a week-long work holiday here in Norway so we made the most of it and finally gave ourselves a little break. I can't even express how desperately it was needed. Especially since it meant Chris and I finally got to have some work-free time to ourselves for the first time in what felt like months.

One morning a day or two into the break, I woke up to a strange sound in the backyard. In my half-asleep state I couldn't figue out what it was, but then I realized with a start that it was the same bleating sound of baby sheep I had heard a week before out at Utstein Kloster! I jumped out of bed and over to the window so fast it woke Chris up in a bit of a panic. He was not as enthused as I was as I excitedly pointed out the window whispering, “Baby sheep! Baby sheep!”

But lo and behold, our backyard was full of soft and fluffy little lambs and it was so fun to watch them run and frolick in the spring sunshine all of Easter break!

Skittles does NOT like the sheep in the backyard. Whenever she sees them pass by our window she starts screaming at the top of her lungs. I assume it's a territorial thing, but it got especially bad with the baby sheep dashing about all day. When we bring her outside to look at the sheep up close, she suddenly gets all timid and hides in my hair. She talks all big when she's safe behind a window, but is a total chicken when it comes down to it. We are working on this…
 
Enjoying the most of the beautiful spring sunshine and weather while I could, I also used the break to get my patio container garden started again. This spring I expanded on last year's radishes, carrots, kale, peas, and broccoli with a potted rhubarb plant, green beans, spinach and five bags of potatoes. We'll see how it goes!

Between the arrival of the little lambs and the much-needed break from work the holiday afforded, there was a heightened sense of symbolism for me during Easter this year. It never got fully fleshed out into a spiritual thought in my mind, but watching the lambs in connection with the celebration of Easter was a definite reminder of the atonement and sacrifice of the Lamb of God and the peace that it brings to our lives that is the true meaning of Easter.

 

February 2014

2014 got off to a very busy start with work, so not a lot actually happened for most of January/February. At least not a lot that was super worth of photo documentation. But here are a few highlights from February:

 

A big French anti-submarine warfare naval vessel, the FS Primauguet, made a port of call in Stavanger for a few days and offered free open tours during certain hours. We gave it a romp with our friends, Carrie and Kjetil, and their kids.

 

 
Downtown Stavanger is beautiful, even in the middle of winter.
 
And lastly, after MANY failed attempts, I finally managed to make decent homemade corn tortillas! We can't find true corn tortillas here in Norway anywhere, and fish tacos just aren't the same with flour. They were a TON of work, but I'm excited we finally have something useable for special fish taco occasions :)

 

This – right here, right now – is Norway.

This hike to Månafossen and the Mån Farm with the Hoegers and our church is going in the C2 record books as one of the most Norwegian things we've ever experienced.
 
First, there was the hike to the falls. In the drizzling rain. Rain doesn't slow the Norwegians down one bit.
 
We continued up through the mossy, mysterious forests to Mån Farm.

 

Then we grilled pølse on the bank of the river for lunch. Because of course it's not a true Norwegian outing unless hot dogs are consumed.
 
We cheered on Crister as he tried to rock-hop across the river (wearing his parka in August).
 
He almost made it, but then had to wade the rest of the way barefoot through the glacial river.
 
And that glacial river? The kids were playing in it in their swimsuits. It doesn't matter that the water is frigid….it's summer!
 
THEN the sheep showed up. Just sauntered through the group with their bells jingling like it was totally normal. Which…because it's Norway…it was.
 
And then, you guys, the children started RIDING THE SHEEP!
 
And the grandpas too. In Norwegian sweaters. I mean…. FOR REAL???
 
It was like everything we ever imagined/hoped/dreamed Norway to be came to life right before our eyes in a beautiful, surreal still-life of Norwegian culture.
“'Sup?”
 
 
It could only possibly have been more Norwegian if everyone did the hike wearing cross country skis.
 
But I guess that's what winter is for :)