Monthly Archives: December 2012

Gingerbread houses

Today I was presented with two gingerbread houses! What a wonderful gift in these Christmas times, right?

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Personal observations in Paris: French women vs Swedish women

A little French girl at Galeries Lafayette

French women

- wear elegant black wool coats even when the temperature is far below zero. In Sweden warm sporty jackets are certainly more popular in winter.

- wear fur, a lot. Like fur jackets or fur elements in their outfits. In Sweden you will hardly see anyone wear fur, unless it’s fake.

- wear high heels in broad daylight. Walking in parks, shopping, taking the subway… In Sweden, heels are generally saved for the Saturday night and festive occasions.

- despite the traditional image, they don’t wear red lipstick in their daily looks. However, you will see a lot of tourist girls wearing “the French look”: all in black, accesorized with a hat and accompanied with a red lipstick and black eyeliner.

- smoke! I’ve seen so many French girls smoke on the streets, in cafés and sometimes even indoors! Overall, smoking seems a lot more popular in France than here. In Sweden you will hardly see anyone with a cigarette if you take a stroll downtown on a regular day, and personally I don’t have a single smoker among my friends.

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Mother-to-be experiences

I got a lot of requests to write a post about how my life has changed now that I’m expecting a baby.
The truth is, however, it hasn’t changed much at all. Being pregnant turns out to be much easier than what I had expected (maybe I’m just lucky, though).
Here are some random facts about my current situation:

- I sleep a lot. Sometimes 10-11 hours in a row!

- I have a pretty small belly for someone who’s 7 months pregnant, so many people don’t realise that I am! Especially now that it’s winter.

- Having a small belly is very convenient in many ways. For example, it’s not in the way when I sleep.

- Also, I don’t need to buy any maternity clothing!

- However, Hannes still needs to tie my shoe laces, because I can’t really bend.

- For some reason, in the mornings my belly is almost flat, and it gets bigger in the evening. Somehow it “folds in” when I sleep.

- Obviously, I don’t drink alcohol.

- I’m not allowed to eat blue cheese and a lot of other French cheeses, either. Sometimes I can’t help it, though.

- I drink coffee, eat sushi and occasional medium rare steaks, too. Many of you have asked if I’m allowed to.

- I walk a lot, several hours a day. Before it got this cold, I used to bring Greger along. Now I walk and listen to Italian lessons on my Iphone instead.

- Like most pregnant women, I get a heartburn every now and then. It’s a burning sensation in your chest and throat. Pretty unpleasant, but not that bad, and it can be easily remedied with any food that contains calcium, like yoghurt, cheese or even ice-cream!

- I paint my nails several times a week and I have cut my hair twice while being pregnant. For some reason, many of you have asked about this.

- So far, I’ve gained about 4 kg (8.8 pounds).

- Now that I’m expecting a baby, I only want to experience positive emotions. This is why I’ve stopped forcing myself to do things I don’t want to (for example, I only except job tasks that I find fun and interesting) and meet up with people I don’t feel like meeting. My midwife says that’s the way to go.

- Hannes and I are going to have to move to a bigger place now that we’re getting a new family member. This will be so fun! The moving is planned to take place either in the end of this year or in the beginning of 2013. The best part is that I won’t have to do anything, except packing some of my precious belongings into boxes!

- We have already bought a very cool baby stroller and a white bed for the baby. I think we’re ready!

- We both are very happy we’re getting a boy (Hannes is extremely proud that he’s about to become the father of a son!), but of course, we would have been equally happy for a girl.

- On the other hand, I feel that I would go bankrupt if I had a girl! There’s so much extremely cute clothing for baby girls in the shops! I would go crazy with all those tiny dresses and blouses. It’s not really the same in the boys’ department.

- I think we already know the name of our baby boy, but I’m not going to tell you just yet, in case we change our mind.

- This baby will be the first grandchild both for my parents and for Hannes’. Needless to say, our families can hardly wait to get their hands on him!

- Of course, Hannes will be there with me during the birth. He wants to be the first one to see his son, and I will definitely need some company!

- Soon we’re going to attend some meetings for parents-to-be, where we’ll get the chance to meet other couples expecting a child in February. Not exactly looking forward to that, but who knows, it might be useful.

- The baby kicks around like crazy. Sometimes I lay in bed with Greger laying on me, and suddenly the baby kicks him pretty hard! When it happens, Greger gets really offended and leaves. Once I put a cup of coffee on my stomach while typing, and the baby spilled everything on the bed!

These are some of the things I can think of right now. I hope it answers some of your questions! Of course, you can ask anything, and maybe then I’ll do another post like this.

 

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Beautifying pregnancy

I feel like I need to brag a little about my pregnancy while I can, I hope you can excuse me for that. We’ve all heard about this special glow coming from pregnant women, right? Well, I’m not sure I have that (although my Grandma does say that I have a face of a pregnant lady whenever we Skype).

However, I must say that this whole pregnancy thing has been really beautifying for me when it comes to my skin and hair. I know you can’t see it from where you are, but trust my word. It’s almost too good to be true! My skin has never been so flawless in my life, I haven’t seen a single imperfection on my face for months now. And the even skin tone, too! Used to be absolutely unheard of.
As for my hair, it’s crazy thick now. I don’t think I’m losing any hair at all! Before I used to lose quite a lot while washing my hair or brushing it. Now, it’s more like one or two hair straws, if I brush it really vigorously!

Of course, these things can change overnight thanks to all the hormones. Although, I’m kind of hoping it’s going to stay that way at least for a while! The price to pay was that I was completely covered with red pimples during the first two months. I remember avoiding mirrors during that period. And then after two months the spots were suddenly all gone!

So yeah, that’s a pretty good bonus from being pregnant, apart from the obvious benefits. I almost wish I could recommend it as a beautifying treatment, but of course I can’t!

 

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“What does it mean if a swedish man stares at a woman”

Today I’ve been getting some Christmas shopping done (this activity always includes a lot of coffee pauses for me!) and afterwards I’ve been wrapping the gifts. This year I’m getting these things done in advance, because the last thing I need is to get all stressed out the day before Christmas Eve!

Tomorrow we are going to see the traditional Santa Lucia celebration. This means we’re going to get up really early in the morning to see the beautiful procession, and afterwards we’re having a fika with the Lucia buns (lussekatter).

PS. Today I was looking through the search words bringing people to Swedish Love Affair. I do this rarely, but sometimes it’s just so worth it! Here’s a funny example from today:

What does it mean if a Swedish man stares at a woman? I hope this unknown visitor has found the answer on this page! I think this search brings you to this popular post about dating in Sweden.

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Paris tips: Eiffel Tower Lightshow

Watch the short video above to see what I saw

Every day after sunset, the Eiffel Tower lights up for ten minutes every hour. It’s quite enchanting, and I highly advise you to see it. You’ll get a great view from the city’s bridges.

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Snowstorm

The snowstorm has been raging for a couple of days now! It has affected all of us. Greger can only stand being outdoors for a couple of minutes at a time, before he rushes back home as fast as he can. Hannes can hardly find his bike among all the other bikes, because they all look the same.
When it comes to me, well… I managed to come out for a short walk today. Somehow I thought it would be good for me. I even took some photos! As you can see, I was risking both my life and my camera.

“Christmas trees that way”:

There are red mail boxes designated especially for the Christmas cards:

When the weather outside is like that, you know that the best thing you can do is to return home and have a cup of hot cinnamon coffee with a freshly baked lussekatt!

It looks like we’re getting our white Christmas after all!

 

 

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