Today is Walpurgis Eve in Sweden, known in Swedish as Valborgsmässoafton. On this day we have big bonfires all across the country. Before the fire is lit somebody usually make a speak and after that a choir sings in spring. Then we burn up the past years junk, which is what the bonfire consist of, and say hello to spring time. :-)
Unfortunately this year all bonfires in the Karlskrona area (which includes Lyckeby) are cancelled. And this is because the ground is so dry right now. Actually, I can't even remember the last time it rained... But I'm not complaining. I love this amazing weather, even though it means no bonfire on Walpurgis Eve for me this year.
So this is the view from my balcony of last years bonfire in Ekebacken, Lyckeby.
And this is this years bonfire collection in Ekebacken (pic from this morning). Which will remain unlit a while longer.
Originally this was a German tradition. Germans believed that witches had witches' sabbath on Walpurgis Night and therefore they used to lit bonfires to keep witches away. But fires were also lit to chase away predators and supernatural beings before animals were placed on pasture for the first time. People around the fires enhanced their intentions by beating on drums, rattling pot lids, screaming and shouting. It was during the 1800s the custom to celebrate Walpurgis night started to spread through Sweden.
And the name Valborgsmässoafton - Walpurgis Eve originates from SaintValborg (Walpurgis),whohasname dayon May 1st. ShewasanAnglo-Saxonprince's daughter who did missionary workinGermany in the 700's,wheresheeventuallybecame an abbess.
The last few weeks I have been given some awards by other bloggers. I have also had the honor of being featured over at The Littlest Crafter in a wonderful Follower Fridays post. I can't tell you enough how truly grateful I am to have been picked among other amazing bloggers for this. Thank You so much!!!
I also want to take this opportunity, yet again - because it does mean the world to me, to Thank everyone who ever visit, comment, follow and/or e-mail me. I am truly appreciative and grateful for your time and thoughts. Thank You so much! ♥ ♥ ♥
1. Thank the person who gave you the award.
2. Write seven things about yourself.
3. Pass on to seven other bloggers.
4. Tell the seven awardees of their award!
Versatile Blogger Award
1. Thank and link back to the blogger that awarded you the badge.
2. Share 7 things about you.
3. Award 5 or 15 other bloggers.
4. Contact these bloggers to let them know about the award.
So I have chosen to combine these three. Meaning, I will share 7 things about myself and then pass on the awards 7x3. In total I will share links here to 21 awesome bloggers. I do hope you will check them out. :-)
But first - 7 things about myself
1. I have quite a few grey hairs which I frantically dye.
2. I almost never watch TV. The TV-shows I do watch, I usually watch on my computer.
3. I rarely listen to music either. If I do, it's mostly in my car.
4. When I sleep alone I must have a light on. But I don't consider myself afraid of the dark though...hm?
5. I wish I could enjoy to eat olives, because they do look so tasty! But I just can't seem to like them.
6. I have gained 4 kilos (9 pounds) in the last year. Yikes!
7. I'm nearsighted on my left eye and farsighted on my right eye. Which was very helpful to me when I was a child. Because whenever I was unsure of which was left and right, I just had to close one eye. Blurry sight = Left and Clear sight = Right.
Now I'm not sure of the origin of these awards, but I like to give without any strings attached. So if any awardee here choose not to do a post, that's fine with me. No obligations. Although it is indeed a fun and great way to share blogs you like with others. :p
Tomorrow is Maundy Thursday - Skärtorsdagen in Sweden. On this day many children dress up like Easter witches - påskkärringar and knock on doors for candy. Although it's uncertain when this particular Easter tradition began in Sweden, the practice was widespread in western Sweden in the mid-1800s.
The origin of this tradition lies in the 1600's belief in witches and witch trips to the Brocken - Blåkulla. It was believed that all witches flew off to the Brocken on their brooms to socialize with the devil on Maundy Thursday. And it was because this trip took place around Easter that the witches often were referred to as Easter witches.
Even though we celebrate Maundy Thursday in a playful manner today, there is no doubt that the history behind this tradition also has a dark side. Because it was during the 1600's witch trials flared up across Europe, due to the fear of witches. And in Sweden it was during the 1660's and 1670's that the witch trials were at their worst. In fact the Swedish name for this day - Skärtorsdagen, comes from the verb cut - skär in the sense of clean - rena, meaning forgiveness of sin days.
That being said, me and Lisen cannot help but to take a little trip ourselves on this day. ;-)
My sister turned 25 today, Happy Birthday sis! As usual, in exchange for gifts - there must be cake!!! Hehe. And cakes there were! First we had a veggie sandwich layer cake (smörgåstårta) which I was a bit skeptical towards. Mainly because I had never eaten a veggie version of this type of cake before. But I must say that it was insanely delicious! Even the "meat" pieces on it were tasty. So a huge YUM for that one!
The veggie sandwich layer cake.
Second cake was a home made chocolate cake. Also spectacular, but very heavy in consistency. Therefore I could only eat a small piece of it. However, I'm sure the large piece of sandwich layer cake I had before the chocolate cake could have played a some part in me not being able to eat as much as I would have liked to of it. Therefore this chocolate cake definitely also deserves a huge YUM!
Well it's not really a NEW camera, only to me. This camera, a Canon EOS 450D, actually belong to my mother. But she never use it. Therefore I figured that I might as well stick my claws into it. Hehe. So I have only used this camera for about two days now, but I have never used a camera with so many features before. And although it takes time to understand everything, all these possibilities makes it even more fun to take photos than before! Yay! :p
On our walk in the nearby surroundings of Galgamarken today me and Lisen bumped into this sad thing.
I have no idea how it got there? But what a cruel thing to dump a bike next to a bicycle path. And probably a bicycle path where it once vibrantly rolled along. Poor bikey... However, I'm sure your bike spirit is in bicycle heaven happily biking around on the clouds. :-)
So I'm a bit, ehum, me. And sometimes I just get weird impulses to do things like this. I mean, I have no idea how I got this idea. Which, on the other hand, is usually how most of my posts emerge. Anyway, yesterday while I was sitting on my balcony and playing with my iphone, all of a sudden I thought it would be fun to take a pic of me. So I did.
However I didn't like that one. So I took one more, and one more and so on... Until I had waaayyy too many pics of myself, lol! But then I thought, why not post some of them? Just to remind myself that I'm alive and just being, ehum, me. So here are a few of the pics:
In the pic above is Diva, my sisters dog (Lisens daughter), on the look out in my mums garden this afternoon. Even though Diva live with my sister, I consider her my family as well. I mean I have known her since she was born so she definitely has a place in my heart. And today I took care of her because my sister was away. So I thought I'd share some photos our day together. :-)
Now Diva loves to guard. So she's always on the look out for whatever, and as soon as she hear or see anything she lets us know. And on those occasions she get our attention and we go to her (like when she spotted a moose), her face lights up and she transforms into the proudest dog on earth. Which I find is a truly beautiful sight.
So below are some pics of Diva En Garde today.
Wanna visit? Lisen (left) and Diva (right). Hehe. :p
Yesterday I saw a carnival under construction here in Lyckeby, right across from where I live. Usually a carnival means there is a market around the corner, and I had no idea it was market time again here in Lyckeby. I had not seen any signs or ads about one, so I looked it up.
It turns out there is indeed a market this Saturday and it's simply called "Spring market in Lyckeby". It's a yearly event which is held to celebrate spring. Hm? My memory must be a bit "out of order" because I can't remember a spring market here in Lyckeby last year... I know there was a market at the end of summer, but spring...? Lol!
Anyway, if you are in (or around) my neighbourhood this Saturday between 09:00-16:00, come on by and check it out. I know I will! :p
But there is still some way to go before this carnival is up and running. (These pics are from this morning.) It usually takes about 4-5 days to build this carnival, and then of course it takes about 4-5 days to take the whole thing down again. And I always think it's so much work for a few hours of fun. But I guess it must pay off somehow, because they keep coming back. Hehe.
- Form of government in Sweden is constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy.
- The population of Sweden in 2010 was approximately 9.3 million.
- Sweden is one of the countries with the highest average life expectancy in the world. In 2010 the average life expectancy was; for men 79.1 years and women 83.2 years.
- Sweden has the highest number of McDonald's restaurants per person in Europe.
- The two most watched TV-shows in Sweden during 2010 were: Melodifestivalen - Swedish song contest. The singer who wins this contest represents Sweden in the Eurovision Song Contest. Donald Duck "From All of Us to All of You".This cartoon first aired on Christmas Eve in Sweden 1960. And it has continually been one of the most watched TV-shows every year since then.
- Sweden hosted the Summer Olympics in 1912 and FIFA World Cup in 1958.
- The three most popular sports in Sweden are:
- Some Swedish inventions are:
The pacemaker - invented in 1958 by Rune Elmqvist.
The three-point seat belt - invented in 1959 by Nils Bohlin.
Tetra-Pak - invented in 1951 by Erik Wallenberg and his team.
The zipper - invented in 1913 by Gideon Sundbäck.
Dynamite - invented in 1866 by Alfred Nobel, who also instituted the Nobel Prizes.
Not even I knew all this before I did some research for this post, hehe. What really surprised me was the McDonald's thing. Yikes! And I didn't know that we had hosted the Summer Olympics either, cool. :-)
Sources: VisitSweden, DagensMedia, Wiki, SverigeTurism
Fridays have become my blog hop day lately, hehe. So I thought I have one myself this weekend. And because my favourite blog hops are those with few or no rules, this is of course a No Rules Blog Hop. Which means that I don't require you to do anything before you link up. But of course the more active you are in a blog hop, the more activity you'll see on your own blog. So don't be shy to leave relevant comments on blogs you like or follow fellow bloggers.
You can also find 9 other few/no rules blog hops on My Blog Hop Page. So I hope you have fun hopping around this weekend. And if you are a new follower here on my blog just leave a comment and I'll follow back. :p
For this blog hop I use the free text link tool by InLinkz. To add your link to my blog hop simply click on Add your link below. Fill out the three fields, click Submit link and you are done. Happy weekend everyone! :-)