Piano paws

I saw a song on the Muppet Show that I wanted to learn on piano.  I couldn’t find the sheet music so my first thought was “I’ll just watch the keys that Rowlf the Dog plays.”

Yeah.  That didn’t work out.


Chicken smuggler

My thoughts on this story from The Local:

1. Why can’t you bring chicken over the border?

2. I like the caption under the picture – “The chicken in the picture is not the smuggled chicken in the story.”

3. It’s the guy’s 8th time to get caught.  I think the real story here is, “Norway’s chicken prices are TOO DAMN HIGH!”


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Pandas – can’t trust them

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Cafés in Stockholm

I’ve been exploring some parts of the city lately that I don’t usually visit. There’s no real reason I haven’t visited, it’s just that I haven’t had business there.  I was hoping to find some fun shops or new restaurants, but I should have guessed that what I would find here in Stockholm would be several cafes on every block.  Not that I’m complaining.  I like cafes.  But how do I tell which ones are good and which ones aren’t worth my time?  I could try looking at how many people are eating and drinking inside, but I don’t know if these people have good taste.  Maybe they don’t care about coffee or cinammon bun quality.  Maybe it’s located next to their workplace and they don’t have time to go somewhere better. 

Once when I was sitting in a window of a cafe with food that was too expensive for the taste, I considered giving a sharp shake of the head to people standing outside the door.  “From one person to another – don’t waste your time.  Let me save you from wasting your money on stale buns and cheap coffee. Keep going!  It’s too late for me, but you can still be saved!  I think I saw a better place up the street!”

I know I would appreciate this help.  Maybe we could all agree on a secret signal.  A simple thumbs down or thumbs up in the window.  Join me, people.



I think I just accused a doctor of being drunk

I tried to sign up for a new doctor today.  The receptionist said that she would have to check with the doctor first to see if she could take new patients.  I WANTED to say in Swedish that I understood she might be full.  Unfortunately, “full” is the word for drunk in Swedish.  So I think what may have come out was, “I understand that she might be drunk.”  I got a quick glance but I guess I looked enough like a foreigner for the receptionist to let it go.  Or maybe she thought, “Wow, how did she know that doctor is drunk all the time?”


First grade is very exciting

At our first-grader’s beginning of school celebration last week, we noticed that one of the kids from his kindergarten class had been kept behind to repeat another year. My husband and I whispered to each other, “Why do you think he got left behind?” and then my 7 year old leaned over and said, “Oh, I know why.  It’s because he has an arch enemy in first grade.”

Of course.  I should have guessed.


Johan and Anders

Most of the time when I meet a Swedish man, I feel introducing myself and then saying, “So are you Johan or Anders?”

I’m not kidding when I say these names constantly show up. I can’t keep up with who my husband is talking about.  We know so many. 

“So I was talking to Johan….”

“Which Johan? Work Johan? Friend Johan? Boss Johan? Neighbor Johan?

Currently we know at least 5 Anders that often come up in conversations.

For the women, a lucky guess for age 35 and up is Maria or Anna.  When I can’t remember one of my kids’ teachers names, I just try one of these 4.  Half the time, I’m right.


I wrote a book!

Did I mention I wrote a book?  Yes, now you can have all my thoughts and nonsense in one book!  And I promise it’s not the same stories as on the blog!  It’s short essays and thoughts about life in Sweden, childhood in Texas (there are Goat Men involved and nachos), and important life lessons (Nah, just kidding.)

I hear this book makes everyone who reads it happy and may also be able to give you super powers ( though that hasn’t been confirmed yet.)

It’s on Kindle, Amazon.com and Amazon.UK.  I hope you all enjoy it!

(Psstt… Kindle’s the cheapest. ;) )

Amazon.com   for U.S. readers (or Kindle)

Amazon.uk for European readers.

It’s also available at all other Amazons around the world from what I understand.

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Parliament (Not featuring George Clinton)

My 9 year old asked me some questions about the upcoming Swedish vote, so I decided to take him on a tour of Parliament.  Sometimes it pays off to live in a capital city.

Tours of Parliament are free in both Swedish and English.  It’s a nice building with great views and interesting to see how things differ.  I will now share the two most interesting things I learned on the tour:

1. Until the 1970s, people with epilepsy were not allowed to vote.

2. These days, Sweden does it’s best to make sure every citizen can vote, including people in hospitals and prisons.

I already knew that Sweden makes it very easy for everyone to vote.  You can practically vote everywhere a few weeks before the official elections (plus, the official election is always on a weekend).

In Texas, you vote on a Tuesday when you have to work.  So for many people, it’s not easy to go vote because you may commute 30 minutes or more to work and don’t have time to drive back to your neighborhood voting station and back with the short lunch time allowed.  Technically I believe you are supposed to be allowed to leave work to vote, but in lots of jobs, your employer gets angry about it anyway.  At least that was my experience when I lived there.

I look forward to voting next month.  I’m looking for the party that issues mandatory 2 month vacations for everyone in the winter, more water parks in the summer, and brings IBC Root Beer to Sweden.  Strangely, I haven’t found that party yet.



Wash your clothes? Only 36 dollars!

Stopped by the U.S.A. store in Stockholm today for a laugh and I certainly found it. 

Tide laundry detergent – 249 SEK  (That equals 36 American dollars).

I know Tide smells nice and all, but I think I’ll just buy the 7 dollar Swedish detergent instead.



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