It’s time for another post! In some ways this has been a tough week: I came down with a random vomiting bug last Friday and felt tired and grotty for several days. This meant I missed out on lunch with my friends on Saturday and was none too energetic for our Afternoon Tea on Sunday. However, despite this bout of ill health there have also been some really special moments this week:
As the sun set over Urshult last Saturday, hubby and I were spontaneously invited to a neighbour’s home to soak up the last of the day’s sun, drink some G&Ts and chew the fat. Our neighbour’s children were playing inside while us adults sat on the sunny decking and made the most of the beautiful weather. Vad härligt* as they say in Swedish! I love how living in a small village means that socialising last-minute like this is simpler and easier than in London, where things often need to be a bit more planned due to long journeys, tight schedules etc.
On Sunday a large group of friends arrived to stay for a few days. One of the best things about owning a B&B is there is always room for friends and family to stay! Also, it encourages me to break my normal routines and do some fun stuff. So it was that on Monday, 13 of us headed to Urshult Camping, rented canoes and boats and set off for an adventure on Lake Åsnen. First we canoed to a couple of islands and explored those and then we paddled on to a beautiful beach spot called Dunshult. Here we ate our picnics, swam or paddled, built sandcastles, barbecued and generally enjoyed ourselves. It was a marvellous tonic to the previous weeks of hard graft in the hotel (summer is our busiest season) and reminded me of why I moved to Urshult. It is so damn beautiful here!!!
Boys in the garage
On Tuesday my stepchildren arrived back and it wasn’t long before my stepson made his way to the garage to tinker with his new go-kart. 10 minutes later I looked round to see he had been joined by my father-in-law, hubby AND our 17 month old son, Zac. 3 generations of Augustsson males spent that entire morning in their element fixing and cleaning and engineering. It was a heart-warming snapshot of family life.
Meanwhile in the kitchen…
…my step-daughter and her bestie were busy baking cupcakes. Locating all the utensils they needed in our large restaurant kitchen, buying ingredients from the local shop and then baking some delicious cupcakes (that had a very funky pink streak in the middle!) I love hearing my family enjoying themselves!
Friends in the garden
I also love to hear guests enjoying themselves and hubby and I have both commented that, due to the weather not being so good this summer, there have been less guests hanging out in the garden and veranda in the evenings. So this week, it was wonderful to hear my friends’ bubbling conversations, lively laughter and the sound of cutlery on food-filled plates. I forget sometimes how congenial Urshult Hotell can be for large groups, especially in the summer months😎
Mien sandcastles and swimming
Wednesday was a swimming day in the Augustsson home. We finished working as early as we could (around 5pm) and headed to Lake Mien. There is a beautiful sandy beach here called Laxasand so we packed the kids up and headed there in the car. The water was pretty cold but we all swam plus there was more sandcastle building (well, this time it was a very pretty waterfall) and we also had the inflatable boat. Everyone slept well that night thanks to the exercise and fresh air!
My final Swedish Snapshot comes from today’s visit to Växjö (our local city for those that don’t know!) They recently opened a new playground here inspired by the local legend Carl von Linné (the man who invented the still-used Latin classification system for plants and animals. The local university is also named after him.) I have become a Very Big Fan of playgrounds since having Zac. He is a SUPER active toddler so any excuse to get him out of the house and burning off some of that energy is a win as far as I am concerned! Today’s playground was especially beautifully designed with pictures of plants, a working clock that the children can set themselves, a forest of reeds and a fairy-tale castle theme. We met friends there and played with other toddlers. Zac was happy and tired – job done!
Well that’s it for this week. Hope you enjoyed my Swedish snapshots!