Thursday, November 19, 2015

Fourteenth Weekend

Well, seeing as it's now almost the fifteenth weekend, I thought I should take time away from my novel-writing and get back to the blog for a while! It's funny to feel guilty about not doing something that is entirely my choice to do or not do. I'm slightly ahead of the word count for this time of the month, with 11 days left to go now, so I feel it's ok to take a bit of a break. Yesterday I took a break too, to read some more of the Frances Mayes book I requested via inter-library loan. Because it's from a different library, not the one here in town, I can't renew it as easily and it's due next week. So I've got several ongoing things I'm trying to get done this month!

Our fourteenth weekend was mostly calm and quiet. It started off as usual with Disney Sjov on Friday evening, complete with the huge beanbag and popcorn. I wonder what Friday night tradition we will have at home. I love that we start each weekend this way!

We decided to go to Ribe to the grocery store, as it's quite a bit bigger than the ABC here and has a selection of things in addition to food. We bought a small, live Christmas tree for 60Kr. It's only about 2 feet tall. The tag says it is ten years old already. It's fun, though, and cute. Several weeks ago, when searching for chestnuts, we found a sort of (really!) tacky candle ring with two fake apples (there are spaces for four) and a burgandy and gold ribbon on the plastic greenery. Torben thought it was a good topper for the tree, so there it sits.
 I bought several decorations at the recycle shop; I may have too many for this little tree! We are not going to decorate it until after December 1, though, just on principle. Walking home the other evening from dinner, in the dark, we saw that someone had their tree lit in their living room on the other side of the field. It was beautiful. But it still seems early. Maybe because November is dark and cold, Christmas season begins earlier so there is some brightness to look forward to.

We laughed when I asked Jeff to read the directions for me on the tree. On most packages, there are symbols for Denmark, Germany, Iceland, Finland, Sweden, Norway, etc. and I cannot read any of them very well -though I can figure out ingredient lists on foods, more or less- so I asked Jeff what this said. He got about half-way through reading the description before I realized that Great Britain was one of the languages on the pot. Sigh. I guess I could have figured out how to take care of the tree myself!

The students from the folk school are all away on various trips around the world right now, though the group of refugees were staying in Denmark and going on different tours here. Friday evening, they were in charge of dinner. The cooks had said at lunch -which was only about 15 people- that there would be fixings for making sandwiches for dinner, and the guys asked if they could cook instead.

We arrived at dinner to find the tables set -rather than the wheeled carts of plates sitting next to the foods-
There weren't many of us, so this made more sense than dragging out all of the plates and utensils, and it also looked really nice. It made the dinner even more special, especially considering there were so few of us. I think there were eleven or twelve total. They made rice, and a beef-in-yogurt dish, as well as falafel and salads. It was all very good! They even put everything in the serving dishes before putting it out on the table. Many times, when a meal is more informal and there aren't as many people, the baking dishes find there way out to the serving station instead.

Then we cleaned the house! How exciting! It was nice, though, to have everything put away, the floors swept, vacuumed, and mopped, and everything looking pristine. It sets a good tone for everything else when you have a nice deep clean, in addition to the everyday picking up. The boys were even on board with the plan, and Svea can usually be convinced to put things away if you're putting them away also. She is at that fun age now where she's getting particular about things getting put in their place.

The boys' Danish is just taking off now. It's fun to hear them talking so much, in complete sentences and using the correct grammar forms. I can't always understand them when they talk to me, and sometimes when I tell them to do something they say they won't do it until I tell them in Danish. I wish I picked it up as easily as they did. I try to listen at meals, and when the television is on, but I haven't been to any language classes. They're a ways away, and in the evenings, so it just didn't work out. Just last week Torben really started speaking in full sentences, and answering people when they asked him things in Danish. It's so fun to see. Svea is talking all the time now, too, though it's mostly in English. This makes sense since she spends the day with me. She has mastered "nej!" though, and uses it frequently.

It's just about lunch time now, though it looks like 4pm outside. Probably at 4pm it will be mostly dark. The rain seems to have settled in for the duration of the week. It feels cold in the mornings when we go somewhere, and the wind is crazy. I'm constantly amazed at how fast the clouds go by overhead, or how often it rains sideways because the winds are so strong. It's nice sitting inside with candles and cozy clothes and socks, watching it out the windows.

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