Home workout and new haircut! vlog#19

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My natural prozac

I can’t tell you how happy I am to live so close to the forest. The forest is my happy-pill. My therapist. My natural prozac.

When feeling grumpy, negative, depressed, sad or just plain old bored: if I’m smart I will make myself go for a walk in the forest. Honestly, it helps every time.

Not that I return hopping, skipping and full of happiness and joy every time, but at least feeling a lot better than when I started.  It helps to get some fresh air, to clear the head, let the thoughts flow, and for me at least: to admire the beauty of nature.

My favorite time to go walking in the woods is just before the sun sets. I sometimes walk in awe of how beautiful everything is. Obviously not possible to catch all of this in photos, but still I try to capture some of it.

Here are some pictures from my last walk. Hope you like them! ❤

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A weekend in Budapest

Budapest was the destination for the trip I got for Christmas from Chris. A country and city neither of us had visited before.

Perfectly timed, our trip started on the 3rd of March on Chris’s birthday! Earlybirds as we are (ehh…. maybe not so much me), we had the alarm set for 5:30 am, just enough time to brush our teeth, close the suitcase and make our way to the train station. Our way to the airport is fairly easy, but does take about 1h 15min. One good thing about Denmark is that public transport is cheap! We only pay around 50 DKK for the whole journey.

We had a quick breakfast from Joe & The Juice (looove the Tunacado!) at the airport, before our flight to Budapest. The flight was only 1:50, so it went quick! And the good thing about getting the early flight is that you arrive in daylight, and you have the whole day ahead to explore a new place.

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Unlike me, Chris likes to plan things for a trip. Something that does come in handy at times. For example we didn’t have to pay a fortune for a taxi to get us into town, or to cue up at the ticket office. Thanks to Chris’s research, we just bought two bus tickets at the little kiosk, and had a very simple and cheap journey into Budapest city center. A bus straight outside the airport took us half the way, then changed to a metro that took us right to town. Easy as!

It was a lovely surprise to find Budapest bathing in sunshine when we arrived, and it was actually to warm to wear our coats! What a treat! And a thankful escape from scandinavian winter.

Our hotel was located on the east side of the river Donau, and on the side called Pest.It was very central, and only a street away from the square outside St. Stephen’s Basilica. We stayed at Hotel SasOne. The entrance to the hotel is actually in a residential building, and the reception isn’t much to brag about. But the hotel has great location, lovely big rooms and nice breakfast. For the price we paid, it was perfect.

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Since it was Chris’s birthday, I had contacted the hotel in advance to ask for a surprise bottle of champagne to be in our room when we arrived! I had also brought presents, balloons etc to make it festive! But, my disappointment was rather big when I discovered only a warm bottle of white wine sitting at the desk, and nothing more. Not even a happy birthday from the receptionist. Oh well, the thought was good…

We spent the Friday wandering around, and admiring all the old beautiful buildings that are everywhere in Budapest. We stumbled across a small street food market outside and decided to have some local bulgarian food for lunch. We tried the famous Lángos, which is fried dough with toppings. Like a type of pizza. A plate-sized sheet of fried dough that is usually smothered with sour cream and cheese. We had one with sour cream, grilled paprika and roccet. I thought is was delicious!

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Friday night was the big birthday night, and we got dressed up and ready for the town! Chris had found us a great restaurant using Tripadvisor, and booked us a table. Before dinner we wanted a quick drink, and randomly found a wonderful winebar serving hundreds of kinds of hungarian wine. They even had a two-man jazz band playing, and the atmosphere was really great. We would have stayed a lot longer, if it wasn’t for our table reservation. The place was called ETAP deli & night.

(We did try to go back to this place on sunday, but unfortunately it was closed! 😦 )

We had dinner at Konvy Bar & Restaurant. A small and cosy placed looking more like library than a restaurant. Great atmosphere, great service and lots of nice food on the menu. Unfortunately I managed to chose the wrong dish, and ended up with a meal completely over salted – what a disappointment! Chris’s duck was amazing, and so was our Creme brulee for dessert. Too bad the waiter did not give us any discount on the bill after our complaint, and sort of ruined our experience. Shame on you!

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Peik fish and spinach risotto, with a ton of salt

SATURDAY

We had an early start on Saturday, so no time for a lie in. Bud we managed to stuff our faces pretty well with the hotel breakfast. You know, when it’s free….

And then we were off for the Spa!! You know, Budapest is known for all of its baths and spas. It was horribly difficult to chose one actually. We ended up going to Gellért Thermal Baths. One of the biggest and oldest in town.

We took the tram just accross to the other side of the Donau, and there it was. Connected to Gellért Hotel. The buildings are huge and old and beautiful. After reading a lot of reviews about this place, some of them said that the staff was unfriendly and unhelpful, and that the baths were smelly and dirty. Luckily we found that none of this is true! The staff was very friendly and helpful actually, and it smelled like any bath I been to. We had booked our entrance tickets as well as a massage in advance. We used this site: http://gellertspa.com/

The bath is quite big, so you actually get a map when you go in. As it was a lovely sunny day, we started off with a splash in the outside pool! They have two pools outside, but only the smaller one was open. But it was really nice with 36 degrees in the water, and with the sun on our face it was really enjoyable.

After this it was time for our treatment, 50 minutes of the Royal Thermal Massage. Two nice ladies treated us, and it was great. Mine was a little bit disappointing, since I was expecting a proper rub, but it was more relaxing really. Chris was very happy with his. But for the prices it is all worth it.

We then set out to explore the rest of the thermal baths. It was one big swimming  pool in the middle, and here you have to wear a swimming cap to go in. We weren’t here to do laps, so we didn’t bother with this. On each side of the pool you find the thermal pools. There are two on each side, as well as saunas, steam rooms and small cold plunge pools. The rooms are beautiful in art nouveau style, and it’s a very relaxed atmosphere. Thermal-Pool-Gellert-Spa-Bath

My favourite bit, besides from the outdoor pool, was to have a quick dip in the cold plunge pool, before going into the hot thermal pools. What a refreshing feeling! The coldest one was just 10 degrees!

We finished the spa-experience off by a cold beer outside on the sun deck. Two thumbs up for Gellért Thermal Baths! 🙂

All the bathing made us hungry – and the next plan was to find the best pizza in Budapest!

Its no secret I am a big fan of pizza. But I am also quite fuzzy, and I like it the italian style with a proper crispy crust. Chris had found a place on TripAdvisor, and it is actually number 4 out of 2457 restaurants in Budapest. (But as we all know, Tripadvisor can be pretty deceiving, so never trust it completely!) Local Korner was our destination, and it is located in a…what can I say.. different part of town, compared to what we’ve seen so far. The area was a little dodgy, and I wouldn’t want to walk these streets on my own in the dark… BUT! It was day time, the sun was shining, and our bellies were hungry! We found the place eventually, and it is actually nothing more than a tiny take away place not looking anything special. But, as soon as we walked in the doors we could tell we were in good hands. The two guys working there were super friendly, and the place had a cool atmosphere. It only had one small table, but thats all we needed! 🙂 Let me just say that it was one of the best pizza’s I’ve had, along with a really yummy cherry beer, it was a great lunch! We even got to taste a local hungarian brandy of some sort..haha.

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Would defo reccomend the Local Korner!:)

After a long day of exploring, we needed a few hours rest in our hotel room, and it was hard to get back out! We ended up just going to a close by italian place for some pasta, not worth saying anything else about. An early night it was, and some well needed hours of sleep so we could get the most out of our last day in Budapest.

SUNDAY

Not so lucky with the weather this day, with grey clouds and a bit of rain we headed for the shopping streets! Quite successful for the both of us. They have all the normal high street shops, as well as some of the more expensive fashion boutiques. But luckily I also found some new shops I’ve never seen before, with a bit more different clothes.

We were determined to try out some more hungarian food before we left, so Goulash was our goal for lunch today. Yet again Chris had found the most popular local cafe to have goulash, and we found our way there. Surprisingly it was actually a small queue outside! Definitely a popular spot! A tiny two story place called Drum Cafe. Famous for their simple hungarian food.

We only waited about 5 minutes before we were seated at a tiny table in the corner. The place was packed to the rim with tables and guest. Not the place to go if you want to have a personal conversation 🙂 But, the food was cheap and tasty, and so was their cherry beer on draft. Goulash soup for me, and regular beef goulash with rice for Chris. Both very happy!

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The rest of the day we spent looking around the other side of Donau. The Buda side. We saw the Buda Castle, and just wandered the streets. This part of Budapest is quite different from the Pest side. ALOT less people, and not as much life. Lots of hills and great views over Pest.

For our last dinner we meant to go back to the fantastic winebar we stumbled upon on friday, but as mentioned it was closed. That meant we had to find a place on the wim, and from saturday night’s experience we were a bit sceptical. But, we were in luck! On our way we had walked past a restaurant that looked very busy and cosy, so we went in there. They managed to squeeze us in on a table in the window, but it was perfect for us. A bit out of the way, but still nice. Két Szerecsen was the name of the place, and it was the best food of the weekend. Chris had another duck, while I had beef cheeks! It was just delicious! Good service, good food and good wine. We really enjoyed it.

Since it was our last night, we treated ourselves to a drink at the Ritz Carlton Hotel on our way home. Very fancy hotel! And a nice ending to our evening.

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Monday our flight was early, so only had time for breakfast and to get ourselves to the airport. Budapest has quite a nice airport by the way. A few shops and lots of restaurants.

I am glad we had almost 3 full days to spend in Budapest. It is quite a big city, and there is lots to do and see here. We could easily have spent another few days to really get to know the city and to see some more of the sights. I am very pleasantly surprised about the city. It is very beautifull, has lots to offer, friendly people and loads and loads of cool places to eat and drink. Would definitely come back here one day, to try some more of the spas, eat more hungarian food and explore more of the city.

Thanks Budapest! ❤

 

Monday got me like…

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Why are  Mondays so horrible?? No matter how happy I am on a sunday night, pleased about a nice weekend, and forcing my brain to think: I-will-jump-out-of-bed-when-my-alarm-rings-and-be-so-freakin-happy, Mondays are still just CRAPPY.

It is SO hard to get out of bed on Mondays. And the day is just extra long, extra boring, and extra crap so to speak.

Actually there might be some scientific reasons for this..hmm…

1. SLEEP PATTERNS

They say our minds are slaves to our body clocks. So if you like me, like to “catch up” on sleep on weekends – you just confuse your body clock and mess you up! The extra sleep you get on weekends makes you more tired at the start of the week, because it can throw your body clock off, and this makes it even harder to get up on a Monday.

(Will this news make me give up on my lie in’s in the weekend? Heeell no! )

2. SUDDEN CHANGE

Scientists have found that when you ask people to record their emotions at regular intervals, it turns out that Mondays are no more stressful or depressing than Tuesdays or Wednesdays. But switching from ‘happy-go-lucky’-Sunday to ‘work-day’-Monday is apparently  a larger emotional shift, and will therefore feel a lot worse than for example from a monday to a tuesday. Fridays come out as “the best day” because we are anticipating the weekend, but other than that – all workdays are actually equally terrible..haha.

4. YOU FEEL WORSE ABOUT YOURSELF

For most people, including myself, an average weekend might include more eating and drinking than normal. Which leads to feeling guilty and bad about yourself. Which again leads you to consider starting a diet or something like that. While that is a positive change, it isn’t fun to actually do, and it comes from a place of feeling bad about yourself and your health, which contributes to that blah Monday feeling.

I also read somewhere that Mondays are the most common day for people to suffer heart attacks and strokes!! And also they say that your blood pressure is higher on Mondays, as is your chance of getting sick in general.

No wonder we hate mondays!!

6. YOU DON’T LIKE YOUR JOB

According to a huge american Gallup poll, 70 percent of people hate or, don’t like their job. This contributes to what psychiatrists and career coaches call the “Monday Blues.” Feelings of depression and anxiety can start on Sunday night, leading to an unproductive Monday. I for one recognise that feeling.

But for me – I actually quite like my  job, but I dislike working in general..haha. If I could retire today, I probably would! I am and will always be – pretty darn lazy! So if I could have 7 Sundays in a row every week, I wouldn’t mind it!

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Super Successful Saturday

So, it’s one of those days where my own tips to a happy life goes down the drain. Positive thinking can go to hell.

I’ve had a boring and shitty day, and I’m not afraid to say it. It’s my Saturday and I’ll cry if I want to!

It started after 12 hours of solid sleep (which is what happens when I don’t have an alarm clock on), and I woke up stressed about how far the day had already gone without me.

Determined to do something with this day, I skipped my normal breakfast and coffee in bed (how stupid was I), jumped out of bed and into some clothes. Even put some makeup on, as a first this week! But no matter how quick I was, I still ended up having to ride my bike like a madman to catch the train. Almost had a heart attack!

For the first time since coming to Denmark, I took the train south, heading for the wonderful (?) town of Næstved. In Næstved they actually have a shopping mall! So I thought it was worth a visit, and worth the effort of getting out of bed this Saturday.

Would I come to regret this decision? Perhaps…

I managed to get off at the wrong train station. So that was funny! I then had to take a bus to get to the mall. Another half hour wasted… and guess what, shopping malls close at 4 on a Saturday in Denmark! Arriving at the mall, it was ok. Ok size, ok shops. Wandering around, looking here and there, and I didn’t buy a thing. After an hour or so I sort of had enough. Checked the trains home.. only one every hour.. hmmm… should I just leave now? Or, should I take the next train and spend an hour in Bilka (which is a HUGE grocery store with everything from tv’s to clothes to fresh food)? Bilka it is then!

But first, let’s have a Starbuck coffee while I’m here! Awesome I thought… except it took about 20 minutes to get my coffee, so when I finished drinking it, and started looking in Bilka I suddenly found out I only had 10 minutes before I had to walk to the train! What?! Oh jesus…. now what… should I just go home without any groceries, or spend another hour ++ in here??!

So I ended up staying even longer, just because I tempted myself with sushi for dinner. Which they normally have at these humongous Bilka shops.

Mark the word ‘normally’… today they were sold out!

How nice! That made my mood so much better I can assure you. So, I walked around grumpy grumps for an hour, bought only a hairbrush and a  Camembert cheese (sounds like a great dinner?!), and then walked to the train in fog and rain.

Got to the right train station, and of course, the train was delayed…… ahhh… could this saturday be any better?

So, now I am finally home. It is 7pm, and I have completely wasted this day. Determined now to drink a bottle of wine, and have a full camembert for dinner.

Happy Saturday everyone!

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7 ways to a happier and healthier life

How I can give advice on a happy life, who is such a negative and miserable person, you ask? Well, I have done my fair share of research about the subject, and I am pretty confident that these things can make your life a little better (or at least not worse!). These are the things that I am working on to try and have the best life I can right now.

Exercise

It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you do something! Did you know that sitting still is worse than smoking? As for myself, I work from home and if I am not aware, I can sit still for most of the day without moving at all. This does not make me feel good, and if I have a day like that I feel rotten inside. But, it is easy to avoid! Take a walk, do some Yoga, or just some stretching, go for a run, or go to the gym. I have never in my whole life regretted a workout, and I don’t think I have ever been in a bad mood after an exercise. For real!! Give it a try, and see how it makes you feel. For me exercise is natural antidepressants.

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Sleeping

Good sleep is essential to feeling good, at least in my book. A bad nights sleep can ruin my day. And a few nights in a row – even worse. For the most part of my adult life I have had some issues with sleeping. I take forever to fall asleep. I can be dread tired all day long, and as soon as its bed time I am wide awake! As soon as I turn the lights off, my brain switches on full speed. Extremely annoying, and really hard to turn around. Believe me I have tried!! But, there are a lot of advice out there on how to switch off your brain for bedtime, and how to sleep better. I recommend a google search, and try out what works for you.

As for me I have found a temporary solution that actually works for the time being (hurray!). I found it in the book ‘The power of now’ by Eckhart Tolle. Recommended!

Logging off

This is something I need to get better at myself. I spend way too much time in front of a screen, either being my computer, Ipad or phone. I stare at the screen for about 8 hours everyday for work, and then I spend a lot of my spare time doing the same. Like writing this blog, reading other blogs, watching tv-series, or just scrolling through social media. I am used to constant stimulation from electric devices, and as soon as I have 5 seconds to spare, I grab my phone to “check if something’s happened”. I try to force myself off this habit, and I have for example deleted the Facebook app from my phone. Instead of spending time on the internet, I think it’s good to log off and do other stuff. Like just listening to some music while reading, drawing or writing (with an actual pen on an actual piece of paper!). Colouring books for adults is a great way to log off and take a timeout. Or go for a walk. Call a friend. Maybe some meditation? I’m not very experienced on this, but sometimes I test some guided meditation sessions that I find with my good friend Google. This one I tried the other day, and it made me feel pretty good. Why don’t  you give it a go: 10 Minutes To Positive Thinking: Guided Meditation

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Conversations

As an introvert, talking is not my strong suite. I like listening more than talking, and I can find it hard to communicate in words. That’s why I like to write instead, and always used to write long letters and emails to friends/boyfriends/family if there was something I needed to say. But… I do like to have conversations about deeper things, although it happens rarely. To talk about the universe, the meaning of life, love, feelings, the world, religion or what not, is something that I enjoy. But only if I feel safe and confident, and with the right person in the right setting. But, I want to try to do it more often, and become more comfortable with it. Its great to open your mind as you think, talk and discuss. I think it can give you great pleasure at a deeper level.

Beeing social

Puuuh… this is also a hard one for me at times. I am very happy in my own company, and would much rather be on my own that with people I don’t know very well. You can read more about my social awkwardness in my earlier blogpost here. But, it’s no secret that near relations does a lot for one’s happiness. This I realise. And there is no better thing than to enjoy time in company of good friends or family with good food and wine. That is definitely one of my favorite things to do.

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Hugs and kisses

Research actually shows that hugging is extremely effective at healing sickness, disease, loneliness, depression, anxiety and stress. How wonderful is that! Me for one loves hugs and cuddles. One of my favorite thing is to go to bed snuggling up to my boyfriend, and waking up in the same way. I have recently read that hugs are a lot like meditation and laughter. They all help us to be present in the moment,  to get you out of circular thinking patterns and connect with your heart and your feelings.

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Positive thinking

This might sound as a bit of a cliche, but I can only speak for myself, and this has helped me alot. I’m naturally quite a negative person, and it is so easy for me to go on a downward spiral of negative thoughts. To dig myself a big hole, crawl into it and bade in my own misery. But to identify your negative thoughts is the first step towards letting it go, so that is step one. I try to be a lot more aware of my own thoughts, and if I find myself being negative I try to turn it around, or think about something else. To be grateful is also a good help to overcome negative thoughts. Every night I try to think about what I am grateful for from that day, and what I have to look forward to the next day. Or, if nothing else works; Fake it ’til you make it! 

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The year of 2016 (part II)

JULY

In July me and Chris travelled to the UK for a big family get together. We stayed a few days in the amazing countryside where we camped and enjoyed some great times with the Risbeys!

We also spent time with my family. Later in the month we went to the Norwegian mountains, and spend a weekend in a cabin to celebrate my mums 60th birthday. It was just amazing with perfect weather, happy family members and good food and wine!


AUGUST

In August we had pretty good weather, and continued to enjoy our new local area. Took the train to Køge, went to the beach. Had lots of BBQ’s on our patio. Went for runs and walks in the forrest. Drank wine and enjoyed the sun as much as we could.


SEPTEMBER

Finally it was time for a proper holiday! Chris and me were invited to Spain with Pia, to stay in her mums house in Villajoyosa. I longed for this holiday with all my heart and body, and it turned out to be the perfect trip.

We lived right on the beach, and the town was so charming and nice. The weather was great, and we couldn’t have asked for anything better. We even rented a car so we could go down south to visit Chris’s dad! Nice food, lots of beer & wine, long days on the beach, nights with chatting and Yatzi 🙂

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After our holiday I went back to Norway for some time back at the office, and to catch up with family and friends.

It was also the month of my 32nd birthday! Chris had planned a whole weekend for me. We had a night in Copenhagen, and a night in a cosy cottage on the coast. I am one lucky girl!

OCTOBER

This month we finally made it to Bergen to visit my good friend Hege and her lovely family. We had such a great weekend! Me and Chris hiked to the top of Bergens biggest mountain; Ulriken. We all had a day in Bergen walking around, played with the kids, had a great BBQ in the garden, enjoyed some home cooked dinners and drank some wine! I hope we can go back again very soon.

 

 

October also gave us a great cabin trip to the mountains. We were invited with my brother and his girlfriend to go to Rauland for a weekend. Its quite a long drive up there, and the roads are extremely winding. Driving up in the dark is not to recommend – especially not for an amateur driver like my self!
But, getting up there it was worth it. A cosy fireplace, red wine, good food and board games. And on saturday we had a great hike. I really really like walking in the mountains. It has become one of my favourite things to do.

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Also celebrated my oldest nephews 18th birthday in October, with a great day out in Oslo. Isn’t it weird how everyone grows up, but you stay exactly the same young age???? 🙂

NOVEMBER

November got kicked off properly with the annual Christmas-party with work! If it is one thing that is great about working at Lillelam, it is that we have the best “julebord” ever (as we call it in Norway). They have each year since I started been truly been amazing.

This year our super-team of amazing girls came to Copenhagen! We enjoyed some proper amazing food experiences, shopping, drinks, a guided tour around Louisiana. (If you ever come to CPH I can really recommend a trip to Louisiana – Museum of modern art. It is a 30 min train ride away, and is such a wonderful place with an incredible location. So even if you are not an artsy-fartsy person, it is still worth a visit. Including their awesome giftshop! 🙂 )

The highlight of the two-day session was definitely our dinner at Clou. Clou is a gourmet Michelin star restaurant in the centre of Copenhagen. I must admit I am not the biggest fan of gourmet food….I think most things are gross and weird..haha. But, the whole experience of that dinner was just… incredible! Even if I didn’t like all of the food 🙂 But our 7 course meal (which turned out to be more like 12) including wine was fantastic. Just fan-freakin-tastic.


PS: I also have to mention that me and my colleage Janicke got our selves a proper laugh when we managed to experience a “real” Thai massage in something that couldn’t have been anything else than a brothel!!

In the end of November we were in for another treat! Our friends Anette & Henrik came over from Oslo, and joined us in Copenhagen for a weekend! We rented a cool apartment on AirBnb, and had a great time together. We did ALOT of waking around, had quite a few drinks, ate some nice food (including finding the BEST pizza in Copenhagen! I kid you not!) and even went to Tivoli in the dark and freezing cold! We wormed up on some gløgg and Irish coffee, so it was worth it 🙂


DECEMBER

One of the nicest months of the year – counting down till Christmas! I spent most of this in Norway, and one of the highlights except for Christmas, was the Christmas party with the best girls in the world – The Fetsund girls!
Thats the girls I have grown up with, and even though we dont see each other very often, we try to get together all of us at least once a year. Everyone wasn’t able to join, but the ones that did had a great time that night. Love you girls! ❤

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Then of course there was lots of Christmas shopping, baking, and other preparations. And then there was Xmas! We spent a lovely Christmas Eve at my brothers house with all the family. It was great! Then there were lots of other family dinners and social get togethers, as well as a lot of lounging around in my new PJ’s eating Xmas cookies and watching movies. I got the whole week off work, and enjoyed every minute.

Then….. the year of 2016 ended with a cosy night with our friends Anette & Henrik at Anettes parents house. We had some seriously awesome food, and a few drinks. We got a spectacular show of fire works to send us in to 2017.


And that my friends, was the quick summary of my experiences of 2016. Looking back at this, I have to admit it was a pretty good year with lots of great memories made. 

I have lots of hopes for this new year, and lots of new years resolutions. But back to that in another post!

 

Thanks for reading my blog! 🙂