Tag Archives: snacks

This is what’s wrong with Finland

It’s Peanut Butter Jelly Time!

I planned to bring both of my sons to the beach yesterday. I packed two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, because they’re cheap to make and I already had everything. Plus, they like them, which always helps.

Just before leaving, my oldest son got an invitation to go somewhere else, so my youngest invited a friend to join us instead. “No problem,” I said. “I’ve already got two towels, two sandwiches and two water bottles.”
And then on the way there, it occurred to me… most Swedish children have never had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
I have this same problem with two other standard American kids’ foods. The first is macaroni and cheese. I can’t think of a kid in America who doesn’t love macaroni and cheese, but guess what? Swedish kids seem to hate it! I have no idea why, other than it’s unfamiliar. Or maybe their environmental, super-healthy senses can tell on some level that a typical box is probably full of chemicals and additives. Still though, it’s pasta and it’s cheese. What’s not to like?
The other problem we often have is frosting on birthday cake. Again, these Swedish kids who aren’t exposed to grotesque amounts of sugar just don’t seem to enjoy it. We have to have whipped cream or fruit to get them to eat it.
So you can see my concern that the peanut butter and jelly sandwich might be rejected by my son’s Swedish friend. That would mean I would actually have to stop and pay for another meal, which I was really trying to avoid.
Luckily, I remembered one of the most annoying songs ever that every kid seems to love, no matter what country they’re from. PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME!
If you’re unfamiliar with the lyrics, here are a few sections of the song. Please remember it is meant to be shouted over the music, and not sung:
It’s peanut butter jelly time!
Peanut butter jelly time!
Peanut butter jelly time!
Peanut butter jelly! Peanut butter jelly!
Peanut butter jelly! Peanut butter jelly!
Do the peanut butter jelly, peanut butter jelly
Peanut butter jelly with a baseball bat
Do the peanut butter jelly, peanut butter jelly
Peanut butter jelly with a baseball bat
Now, I may not have had a baseball bat, but the song did the trick. The sandwich was accepted and eaten by the friend. Money saved! Though I did have to pay in another way by having that horrible song stuck in my head all day.

Pickle juice craze

I’m back from 3 weeks in the states with a confused stomach and many new food observations. Today is all about pickles.

So pickle juice flavor is a thing in the U.S. now. Or at least in the south. I am a huge fan of pickles, but that’s as far as it goes. I have no interest in anything flavored with pickle juice and I honestly can’t imagine who would.

When I was young, my aunt knew that I liked pickles, so one day she made pickle jello for me. It was one of the worst things I’ve ever tasted.

Now the U.S. is selling cans of Pringles chips in pickle flavor, and even worse, the restaurant Sonic is selling pickle slushies. WHY?!

Gee, it’s 100F outside here in Texas. You know what I’d like? A big cup of salty pickle juice!

I also happened upon pickle soda in one store. That’s just wrong.

How to get kids to eat less chips

“Well kids, they might be chips and they might be cobras. How about a nice apple instead?”

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What to have with my afternoon coffee…..

I wanted a small piece of chocolate to have with my coffee.  Could only find Pop Rocks. Does this make me only half an adult?

cof Pop-Rock

Fig Newtons explained

My kids tried Fig Newton cookies on vacation.

8 yr old: Why do they call them Fig Newtons?

10 yr old: Because they follow the laws of gravity. (And then drops the cookie on the floor.)



The Bacon Truck!



Hot dog vending machine

One of my friends here in Sweden took this picture at his local grocery store.
That’s right.  A hot dog vending machine.
Take that America!  Sweden is ahead of you on this one!


Beer and Cheese dip

My friend in Texas sent me this.  I have no words.



While looking for ice cream…

While looking for ice cream in my dad’s freezer, I found this.  South Texas freezer snacks:



In my day…

We had a parent-teacher conference for our youngest son last week.  Over here, they invite the student to particpate in the parent-teacher conference.  I really don’t get this concept.  When I was young, your parents went for the conference at night, you waited at home and imagined all the horrible things you’d done at school and wait for your punishment when they got home.

These days over in Sweden, or at least at our kids’ school, the teachers ignore the parents and talk to the children.  “How do you like it in school? Oh, you don’t like where you sit?  No problem, we’ll find somewhere you’re more comfortable sitting.”

Really?!!  In my classes, you usually sat in alphabetical order and never moved the rest of the year, even if the kid sitting behind you cut your hair off and stole your books.  You just didn’t move.

Our young son complained because I sometime forget to send him with a fruit for an “extra” snack.  My husband laughed and said, “When I was young, we only got a carrot each day.”  Then I had to chime in with, “You got a snack?  We never got a snack.  I never got to bring a snack to school and neither did anyone else.”

I think my son actually felt sorry for me at that point.

We also had to bring our lunch to school or pay for some week-old sloppy joe in the lunch line.  I spent 4 years eating a brownie every day for lunch.  Here in Sweden, all children get a free school lunch – normally a buffet, complete with salad and about 3 options.  Today they’re having chicken curry with jasmine rice.  This includes a full salad bar.  All for free!

Here’s what a school menu for the week looked like at my school:

Monday – spaghetti
Tuesday – sloppy joe
Wednesday – square, stale ground beef pizza
Thursday – leftover pizza
Friday – scary lasagne and jello – cause it’s Friday

There were no vegetarian dishes, no gluten free.  We were in Texas.  Every meal was ground beef, plus you had to pay 2 dollars for the privledge of eating it.

These kids don’t realize how good they have it.


Airline movies

We are taking our summer vacation soon, so that means it’s time to check the in-flight entertainment guide for the plane!

I’m hoping since we live in 2013 that we can have individual screens, but there’s still an off chance that won’t happen.  I really don’t mind for flights under 4 hours, but this will be a trans-Atlantic flight and with 2 children, personal screens are desperately needed.

For some reason, I always feel like I’m getting to watch “free” movies on my flight.  It’s always like a treat.  I wonder why that is.  Technically I just paid a thousand dollars per ticket, yet the movies on the 6 inch screen still feel “free.”  Not to mention the tiny chocolate bars they hide in the back for those of us who want to stretch our legs.  That’s right folks!  They hide snacks in the back on these long flights.  You are welcome to them if you can find them.  You have to hurry because everyone steals the chocolate first and then you’re left with peanuts and jelly candies.  But they’re free, so I won’t complain too much.


What’s up with the cherries?

Why is cherry not a flavor in Sweden?  I’m from the U.S. and I’ve travelled to many other countries in Europe.  They all have cherry flavors!  Cherry candy, cherry liquor, cherry drinks and maraschino cherries.

But in Sweden?  NO cherries.

Why?  There are cherry trees everywhere.  It’s one of the few things we don’t have to import, yet no one seems to be interested.  Sure, we have actual cherries during the right time of year, but nothing with cherry flavor.

Can someone explain why a country that has no problem eating rotted fish, would object to cherry-flavored sweets?

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