Thursday, February 26, 2015

Our Newest Adventure!!!

Jerome and I have some exciting news to share as you may have deduced from the photo! We're happy to say that we're expecting a new addition to our family in August! Everything has been going really well so far, I've been very lucky to have had hardly any morning sickness or anything, aside from being a bit more tired than usual. We're looking forward to starting this new phase of our adventures which will have its share of rewards and challenges. Jerome keeps assuring me when I get nervous, that if we can survive being marooned on an island, we should be able to handle a little person! While I'm not sure quite how the two relate, I'm confident that together we'll be able to rise to the challenge and enjoy the ride! 

Friday, February 13, 2015

Relaxing in Sweden

We just got back from visiting our good friends Kim and Aaron in Sweden for two weeks. We found great deals on flights in the fall, and thought it'd be a great chance to spend some time with them. We didn't have much planned ahead of time, but found some very fun things to do, as well as just relaxing and spending quality time together. And of course enjoying great food, as they are both great cooks! I can't be held responsible if all the food photos make you hungry though!

The first day I went with Kim to her friends house for a crafty afternoon. We worked together to make a pillow cover for Kim! 

While we were crafting, the boys made dinner - Spatchcocked chicken with mushroom and cheese topped polenta and salad. Simply delicious! 

And a trip to Sweden wouldn't be complete without going to Ikea! Their decorations were pretty cute! 

So we stopped by for a buffet breakfast! 

We went to a Bandy game, which is like a combination of hockey and soccer with a few field hockey elements thrown in, played on a big outdoor skating rink. It was quite entertaining!

We ventured into Stockholm. Jerome led us to this cool Saluhall. 

Inside they have all sorts of fancy food stalls with seafood, cheeses, charcuteries, etc. We just admired and didn't sample anything.

Next we played this really cool game called Room Escape which is a puzzle game with a story where you are in a room and have to use all the clues and objects around you in clever ways to solve the riddle and win the game. We managed to finished with just a few minutes to spare! It was a ton of fun, and if you're in a city that has a Room Escape game, I'd highly recommend it! 

We met up with Aaron who had to work late, and then went for dinner with their friends Patrick and Natalie, along with two of their houseguests. We had a tasty dinner of savoury crepes, where we were all to hungry to take photos. 

And then we went to this basement bar that is basically also a giant arcade, with foosball, airhockey, darts, pinball machines, shuffleboard courts and a bunch of other games! We all had a great time! 

For the weekend, we voted to drive 3-4 hours north of Uppsala and rent a small cabin to hangout for the weekend. It was really beautiful and snowy. 

We spent our time between cooking, walking outside and playing games. Kim and Aaron made our first delicious meal. Coconut poached salmon, pea and potato cakes with coconut milk sauce and a cucumber salad

We made sure we had enough candy to last us the whole weekend - about 1.25kg worth!

Aaron kept the wood stove stoked and roaring all weekend keeping us warm and cozy. 

We especially appreciated the fire after our long snowy walks to the lake! 

I was in charge of lunch on Saturday, so I made sweet potato chipotle soup with jalepeno cheese scones. 

We walked to the little town nearby. To get there we crossed a big lake on a bridge and saw quite a few people out ice fishing for the afternoon. 

For dinner Jerome and I worked together to make our signature fajitas.

And we played lots and lots of games. We had brought 5 games with us, and had a tournament. Looks like Jerome must have just won this one! Kim and Aaron tied for the tournament winners. But overall in the trip Kim and I were victorious in our Tichu tournament! 

Jerome spent Sunday morning making us Knishes

They turned out really well, and were super tasty! I'm hoping he'll make them again sometime!

The big attraction near to us was Tomteland - or Santaland. It wasn't really what we were looking for on our weekend getaway, but we drove by to see it anyways. 

We were all pretty full of all the good food, so we had a simple salad and garlic bread for dinner. But we were treated to Kim's homemade Banana cream pie for dessert! 

Monday morning we reluctantly left our cozy cabin and drove back so that Kim and Aaron could get back to work. 

We spent the next day walking around Uppsala and checking out all the cute little shops around. Kim and Aaron made a great lamb sausage stew, served in a bowl surrounded with homemade hummus and homemade naan! It was really impressive and tasty! 

Jerome and I went back to Stockholm to stay over and explore some more. We stayed in the Old Town Lodge in their cubicle dormitory. Which was quite a fun experience. You're in a tiny cubicle with curtained walls that don't go to the ceiling. We were a worried it would be quite loud, but it was actually pretty quiet - except our neighbour who ate a Pringle impressively loudly every few minutes for a while! We enjoyed the location right in the middle of the old town which is really pretty and has lots of small shops, and the Royal Palace. We even saw the changing of the guard and visited the armory. 

Aside from the little shops around town we also stopped in the Stockhom Cathedral that had this amazing sculpture! We forgot to take pictures, but we got our fill of traditional Swedish meatballs at a neat place called Meatballs for the People. And had a fun dinner at the Hairy Pig deli just around the corner from our hostel. They make all their own sausages. 

We were back at Kim's in time to have one last dinner together. She and Aaron made us potato "nachos" we were a bit skeptical when they told is it involved neither cheese, nor salsa, but we were happily surprised at the tasty pile of deliciousness! 

And thus with sadness, our two weeks of food, friends and fun was over. But hopefully it won't be too long before we'll be able to get together and do it all over again!