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Bangsiland - Anna Björk Benjaminsdottir

Welcome to my blogging here in cyber. Mom made this site for me to be able to joy my friends and familly in Iceland, Sweden and other places... wherever you are. Please write a comment if you like (",)

Monday, November 28, 2005

1st of Advent

It has been a lovely Sunday, this 1st of Advent 2005. We slept a little bit longer as mom and dad had been at the Theatre and saw the play Heaven by Ibsen the night before. During the time they were away I stayed at Ingvar and Ingibjörk. We played on the drums and other instruments so I really had a great time.

We started this morning by having a great breakfast and lighting first candle of the wreath mom made yesterday. After that dad put up Christmas lights on the balcony and mom was packing all Christmas gifts for our relative's in Grundafjördur.

Then it was time to go to church. It was so beautiful and we sang many of the famous songs like Silent Night and we wish you a Merry Christmas. This was a special ceremony arranged by the Swedish Association and after wards we went to the Swedish Ambassadors residence for coffee and cookies. The Christmas spirit was on top!

After the Church we went to Smaralind, the big shopping centres were we were listening to a concert and made some shopping. Mom gave dad a very nice suite and dad bought himself a coat. He will be very good-looking for Christmas, that's for sure!!

I was so tired after all this happenings I fell asleep on our way home. It has been a wonderful day!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Mom is back at home again.

Yesterday mom came home again. I was so pleased and happy to see her again though it was very late in the evening and I rather would prefer sleeping. Dad had told me earlier she was on her way home and at 7 I put my jacket and my cap on. Dad smiled at me and said it was many hours left. I was waiting and waiting and dad never said now it was time to go… It ended by I fell asleep on the floor.

It has been great though spending some time with dad. I don’t want to tell mom dad is the best, even though I know she knows. Not for that I don’t like mom, she is good too in her way but not like dad. Mom has told me I am a “dad’s girl” just like she was when she was young girl – it must be in the family, ha ha…

Anyway, still I missed mom a lot while she was away. I was talking to her on the phone almost every day and as soon as I got the opportunity to steel dad mobile phone I did just to see if I could call her myself. My dad got quite tired of hunting me all the time so we went to the store and he bought me my own mobile phone. While I sat in my wagon at the shopping center I tried to call her at once. My phone is yellow and has big red buttons and when pressing my phone blinks and gives sound. Dad told me button 1 was for mom I pressed it at once… dad smiled at me when I put the phone to my ear and started to talk. Then I handed over the phone to my pink bunny and let him talk to mom too. Dad started to laugh. In a Childs’ world every body can talk on the phone – even if it is a toy phone…

Monday, November 14, 2005

Play the guitar

This weekend I have spent with my relatives on my father’s side. Renting a country cabin was a birthday present to my Grand Mother and all sisters, cousins, mom and dad was gathered. It was fun to meet everyone however very crowdie and a bit too much of people for this kind of house. I could see mom and dad was a bit tired when driving home…

My cousin Thorri plays the guitar and he was playing for us all weekend. He is only 12 but he can already play master pieces. I was elated of his entertainment and as soon he quit I just had to try it too. I let my fingers cross the guitar string and yes, it was playing! I was delighted and clapped my hands every time I let it cross the guitar!! As soon as he played again I started to dance. Every one laughed and said I really was a sweetie. Of course she is, mom said…

I knew something was going on… mom told me this morning when I woke up and she said she had to leave without me for a couple of days. She was going abroad working but she told me dad will take care of me as best as he can. Tomorrow she will leave for Sweden and she will be away for 9 days! I will miss her so much but I know she will miss me even more. She told me this was her last business trip before my brother or sister arrives. She also told me she was going to buy Christmas gifts – I hope I will get many this year!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Winter is gone

Winter wonderland is gone and now it is traditional Icelandic weather, which means 5 degrees (41 F) rain and stormy winds. At the moment it is terrible windy and wet! Our darkness has also arrived and soon it will not be many hours with day-light. But soon it is Christmas time and Reykjavik will be filled with lights and candles.

Anna Björks teeth problems starts to come to and end and she is not whining as much as before. Yesterday she was full of energy and at at weak moment I was not watching her, she took a shower from the glass of milk she recently asked for. I was cooking and when I did not hear anything from her I realized she was doing something she was not suppose to do. And I got a shock when I saw she was all wet in milk trying to wash her wet hair and jumped up and down in the pool of milk on the floor...

Talking about Christmas I would like to share our special tradition – which is a bit different from the European and American way of Christmas, even though last 10 years has got influences from the American way of celebrating. The Icelanders are crazy in decorating the houses with lights in different colors. I think it is beautiful with white and blue but can’t really stand the red color. On our house all balconies are decorated with red lights – something that was decided at the house association. For me as a Swedish it reminds me of “red light district” I have seen in bad cop movies. This year I think I will put up other colors too… I hope they will not complain :)

Now to the old tradition: There is not only one “Santa Clause” coming at Christmas day, no, we have 13 called The Yuletide Lads. The story tells one by each comes down from the mountains and if a child has been nice during the day the Lad will put a present or a candy into the shoe, the child has put into the window. However if not being nice the Lad will put a potatoes into it. Gryla, which is the mother of the Lads’, is an evil one and it was very important to be nice otherwise she will take the children and eat them for supper. This was of course very scary for the children and now days no one never really tells the children this. 13 days after Christmas it is time for the Lads to go back to the mountains and for greeting them big fires are made and lots of fireworks displays.

Now days this tradition still is however on the 24th of December we have European tradition too with Christmas tree, Christmas gifts and the “santa clause” – the one that look like in the Coca Cola commercials. It reminds me of the movie Christmas Vacation were The Griswold family's plans for a big family Christmas predictably turn into a big disaster. I have it on DVD at home and I watch yearly at this time when starting to long for Christmas! LOL

This I found on the internet telling the story about our Yule Lads:

The Yuletide Lads.

Let me tell the story of the lads of few charms, who once upon a time used to visit our farms.
They came from the mountains, as many of you know, in a long single file to the farmsteads below.
Grýla was their mother - she gave them ogre milk - and the father Leppalúdi; a loathsome ilk.
They were called the Yuletide lads - at Yuletide they were due - and always came one by one, not ever two by two.

Thirteen altogether, these gents in their prime didn’t want to irk people all at one time.
Creeping up, all stealth, they unlocked the door. The kitchen and the pantry they came looking for.
They hid where they could, with a cunning look or sneer, ready with their pranks when people weren’t near.
And even when they were seen, they weren’t loath to roam and play their tricks - disturbing the peace of the home.

The first of them was

Sheep-Cote Clod. He came stiff as wood, to pray upon the farmer’s sheep as far as he could.
He wished to suck the ewes, but it was no accident he couldn’t; he had stiff knees - not to convenient.

The second was

Gully Gawk, gray his head and mien. He snuck into the cow barn from his craggy ravine.
Hiding in the stalls, he would steal the milk, while the milkmaid gave the cowherd a meaningful smile.

Stubby was the third called, a stunted little man, who watched for every chance to whisk off a pan.
And scurrying away with it, he scraped off the bits that stuck to the bottom and brims - his favorites.

The fourth was Spoon Licker; like spindle he was thin. He felt himself in clover when the cook wasn’t in.
Then stepping up, he grappled the stirring spoon with glee, holding it with both hands for it was slippery.

Pot Scraper, the fifth one, was a funny sort of chap. When kids were given scrapings, he’d come to the door and tap.
And they would rush to see if there really was a guest. Then he hurried to the pot and had a scraping fest.

Bowl Licker, the sixth one, was shockingly ill bred. From underneath the bedsteads he stuck his ugly head.
And when the bowls were left to be licked by dog or cat, he snatched them for himself - he was sure good at that!

The seventh was Door Slammer, a sorry, vulgar chap: When people in the twilight would take a little nap,
He was happy as a lark with the havoc he could wreak, slamming doors and hearing the hinges on them squeak.

Skyr* Gobbler, the eighth, was an awful stupid bloke. He lambasted the skyr tub till the lid on it broke.
Then he stood there gobbling - his greed was well known - until, about to burst, he would bleat, howl and groan.

* dairy product - like yoghurt

The ninth was Sausage Swiper, a shifty pilferer. He climbed up to the rafters and raided food from there. Sitting on a crossbeam in soot and in smoke, he fed himself on sausage fit for gentlefolk.

The tenth was Window Peeper, a weird little twit, who stepped up to the window and stole a peek through it. And whatever was inside to which his eye was drawn, he most likely attempted to take later on.

Eleventh was Door Sniffer, a doltish lad and gross. He never got a cold, yet had a huge, sensitive nose. He caught the scent of lace bread while leagues away still and ran toward it weightless as wind over dale and hill.

Meat Hook, the twelfth one, his talent would display as soon as he arrived on Saint Thorlak´s Day. He snagged himself a morsel of meet of any sort, although his hook at times was a tiny bit short.

The thirteenth was Candle Beggar- it was cold, I believe, if he was not the last of the lot on Christmas Eve. He trailed after the little oneswho, like happy sprites, ran about the farm with their fine tallow lights.

On Christmas night itself - so a wise man writes - the lads were all restraint and just stared at the lights.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Teeth Problems

It all started last week. Little sweetie put everything into her mouth and was chewing like a mad dog. I knew something was bothering her so I put my fingers into her mouth. She answered by biting me. Snap! She stared at me and ran away. On her run she grabbed a new thing and started to bite on it too. I tried to explain for her it will not harm. After a while I think she understood and let me check out her mouth. And there it was. Two more teeth were on its way up. No wonder little Sweetie has been whining more than usual.

All week was full of whine and I tried to explain for her up coming teeth can be hurtful.

Saturday it got worse. Now she refused to eat and I could see in her eyes it was not ok. Little Sweetie had got a fever. One more tooth was on its way up and probably this mouth disorder provoked the fever. I said to myself – we have been waiting for months for next tooth and why on earth do 3 at the same time appear? Couldn’t it be better with only one at the time? Mother Nature is sometimes a big question for me. All weekend little Sweetie was suffering from ace and fever. And as usual when she is not feeling well she refuses food. Does any one have any good advice to give? It does not feel good to start a fight with her but it is a pain to give her anything to eat or drink.

This morning fever was gone. We kept her at home today too and she was wilder than ever. Her energy was totally complete and she was searching for things to do – of course things she was not allowed to do. It is so fun to tease mom :)