A quarter century!

So, 25 years ago I was born. Twenty-five years! It is a big number and definitely a milestone. It’s crazy, but I can’t do anything about it than thank everyone for their happy-birthday-wishes today. I had a wonderful day, it was the most beautiful spring day ever! Not a single cloud anywhere to be seen and it was warm in the sun. Sure, I guess it could have been any other day than a Monday and a school day, but it was still okay. I didn’t do much, went to class, went grocery shopping, cleaned the apartment, played a little on my new Wii U (that Jesper gave me yesterday) and waited for Jesper to come home from work. Soon after that mom came over and we made dinner; tacos. And for dessert; princess cake! Doesn’t matter how old I am, there should always be a princess cake, haha!

It’s been a long time ago since I updated, and not because not many fun things have happened, I just kinda lost my will to write. So here comes a bunch of photos from the last three months instead (sorry, but many of them are of the cats).

Snapchat-5707624776733512754 RamsesSnapchat-5810324255267391196 There was a period when the cats pooped shapes, here was a cat!Snapchat-5971708935792197947 Snapchat-6281412214506013341 Snapchat-6625471852755381294 Cleo is sit-sleeping. Snapchat-8367736236117518819 You can’t go to the bathroom alone.Snapchat-311050361588944317 They removed the soles from my shoes not once, but twice!! Snapchat-778843254324361477 They got a new active toy which they love, blinking balls on a rollercoaster.Snapchat-1863879408636719822 This is the cutest picture ever. I did not put them like this,they fell asleep like it!Snapchat-2467392393892331450 They always sleep along my legs or on them when I am sitting on the couch!Snapchat-2755412171376574423 Never alone.Snapchat-3008962028462712662 Even if they fight a lot, they still seem to like each other.Snapchat-4619855813923631677 Ramses is very chill!Screenshot_2016-02-27-12-34-03 20160229_174001 We had some very pretty sunset the past months.IMG_20160203_223705 IMG_20160209_195354 Semla mudpieIMG_20160217_143337 IMG_20160320_183418 20160303_213048 Ramses the chill.IMG_20160317_144645 IMG_20160317_205648 St. Patricks Day.Screenshot_2016-03-17-13-36-33 IMG_20160325_132959 PANO_20160329_160817 IMG_20160401_192251Jesper and I went up to my cousins in Nynäshamn a week ago. We had a great time up there, played a lot of cards, walked around in the harbor, enjoyed their new hot tub with an ocean view and just hung out.IMG_20160402_122203 IMG_20160403_11243520160409_203531 I got new toys for the cats, and it did not take long before one of them was in its natural habitat. Now it is completely gone!20160411_140139 Cleo is such a beautiful cat! IMG_20160409_134334 Rachel (for those who don’t know, to the right, and my former roommate in California) came here with her friend Elyse to visit for a few days.  We went out to the archipelago and enjoyed the amazing Swedish spring on the west coast.IMG_20160409_142730 IMG_20160409_155340 IMG_20160409_161016 IMG_20160409_142128

Here is a link to google maps where I uploaded a sphere picture taken at Öckerö after my 17-year old cousin told me about it, haha! (I am getting old):

 

Other than what I have taken pictures of, I am doing well in school. I am almost done with my first year in grad school, one more to go. Last quarter I took a class called Leadership & Communication and the home exam I wrote with another girl was super interesting: Why do people follow destructive leaders? We brought up Hitler and Trump as examples and it was the easiest finals week ever. I haven’t gotten the grade for it yet, but it should arrive very soon.Then we had three days in school and then two weeks off. I needed it, just relax for a bit. Today was the first day back after the break and on Wednesday we have a presentation. A few more weeks and then the summer is here and lots of work at Liseberg (where I actually start in two weeks already, but not full time until the last week of May).

I have also been reading, but haven’t finished anything new in a while since I am reading The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and it is long. The new ereader (Kobo GLO) is working perfectly!

I have also played a lot of beach volleyball and have already have many ups and downs. I hope I will have time to play this summer as well, even with lots of work at Liseberg (or maybe SKANSKA if they will contact me about my application I sent in a month ago).

I should probably go to bed now, I am not as young as I was yesterday and I have a lecture tomorrow at 9am. I can’t make any promises about more frequent posts, but I can almost say that the next one won’t take three months.

London Pass

This post used to contain pictures, but due to new storage limitations from WordPress, I had to fix the problem and decided to create a new blog that works as an archive for all the posts from my travels. This full post can be found here.

Another long day is over and my legs and feet are so sore right now. A lot of walking today again, and lots and lots of Brittish history. It’s been a really interesting day with audio tours at famous landmarks. The London pass includes a lot of attractions and discounts and so on. We only bought one-day pass which was a good idea. I don’t think I could have handled two of these days in a row.
Our day started a bit earlier than the other days, with a tour inside the Westminster Abbey church, which is a really really old church, I am remembering so many dates and all of them are mixed up. But I think I remember that this one was built in the 11th century. 200 years later it got its gothic style and was completely done in 1600 I think. Every coronation in London since 1066 has been there and the last one was in 1953 with Queen Elisabeth II.

We each got a phone-like thing with buttons. We walked around in the cathedral and whenever there was a sign with a number on it, we put that in our phones and listened. It looked kinda funny when everyone was walking around with phones.

We weren’t allowed to take any photos inside. And I will never be able to describe what it was like. First of all, it is 31m from floor to ceiling and then there are decorations, statues, coffins and such, EVERYWHERE. Not much space in there was just flat stone. It was incredible! So much history in one place. Isaac Newton and Darwin were buried there, and so were a lot of famous authors too, like Jane Austen.

Our next thing with the London pass was a cruise on the Thames. On the way there we took a lot of pictures of the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. The Thames tour was nice. It felt really good with a breeze in the warm sun. That one took about 30 minutes.

The boat stopped right in front of the Tower Bridge and Tower of London (not the same thing, like I thought…). We had lunch first and I had my very first fish n chips. It wasn’t bad, but not good either. Flavorless. And boring. I think this was the first and last time I had it.

Inside the Tower of London we had another audio tour with phones. This one wasn’t as easy to follow as the other one. And we didn’t listen to everything since it took so long! We listened to the first one though, about the history about the place. The big fortress in the middle is called the White Tower and was built in the 11th century too. At that time it was humungus and completely white. Very hard to miss. It was built by William the Conqueror asa fortification. I don’t remember when, but the White Tower has been open to visitors for many centuries now (3-4?) with weapon and armor exhibitions. Carved wooden horses were inside with armors riding them. A lot of donations from far away were also kept there. And speaking of foregn things. The Tower of London has been a menagerie for exotic animals. The first lion was put there in 1210 and has been since been accompanied by polar bears, elaphants, tigers and so on. In the beginning of 1800 the animals were sent to the London Zoo in Regent’s Park.

Our next stop inside the Tower of London was the exhibition where they keep the Royal Crown Jewels! No photoraphy inside there either. And I have the same descriptive ability as with Westminster Abbey. It was ridiculous and so amazing! All the crowns, maces, silverware (goldware) they use at the weddings, huuuuge diamonds and so much gold I couldn’t believe my eyes. I wonder how much all of that was worth!! They had a golden spoon from 1300 which is used at every coronation. It looked so well-preserved and I can’t believe it is 800 years old! I got the same feeling with the inside of Westminster Abbey. They must maintain it pretty damn well.

When it closed at 6pm we went outside and took some pictures of the Tower Bridge, one of the world’s  most famous bridges. The plan was to go up in it, but it had closed by the time we were done at Tower of London. But just pictures were fine with me.

We took the tube to Chinatown where we had dinner again. Today I had sweet and sour shrimp. Really good. Everyone of us were really tired and I can’t believe I stayed out with mom until, yeah, whenever it was. Helena and Gudrun went home earlier.

All of us went to the M&M World store together though, and it was as crazy as the one in Las Vegas. I bought a big green cup since I don’t really have a big teacup at home and I didn’t have room to buy one last year. Then we went to a souvenir shop where we had £5 off each. I had no idea what to buy until I saw that they had Rainbow Loom rubberbands. I took two bags to my cousin Ella. She will love it!

Out on Picadilly Circus I tried taking another 360 degree photo, but it was hard with the bright light of the big commercial screen. But I got it worked out after a few tries. While I was there I got an unknown phonecall, but I answered, and it was Chad calling all the way from Sweden just to talk a bit because he missed me. That really made me so happy! Very sweet of him :). And it was nice to hear some American English. I’m not sure I like the Brittish accent, it sounds snobby…

We took the Tube home and for some reason three hours just went by. I am so extremely tired now, and tomorrow will just be a calm day with some strolling, shopping and so on. That will be nice. I actually did a little bit of shopping today as well. I bought three pair of belts (£1 each!) and sunscreen at the third of the Swedish price at Primark. Tomorrow I am planning on buying a book, Inheritance by Christopher Paolini. I have the three first ones at home and thought it could be fun to buy the last one abroad.

Time to go to bed now. Goodnight!

Westminster AbbeyWestminster Abbey west entrance. Westminster AbbeyWestminster Abbey north entrance. Houses of ParliamentHouses of Parliament. Big BenBig Ben. Houses of ParliamentHouses of Parliament.South Banks LondonThere are so much cool architecture on the banks of the river Thames. Tower of LondonTower of London. Audio tour inside the TowerAudio tour inside Tower of London. Tower of LondonBeefeaters or whatever Torture in the TowerA room of torture. White TowerWhite Tower. White TowerArmor on display in White Tower. I have no idea why this guy as a thing on his armor but it looks so stupid.White TowerWooden carved horses with armors. White Tower White Tower The Crown JewelsThe Royal Crown Jewels are inside these walls. South Banks LondonCool architecture.Raven at Tower of LondonLots of ravens at Tower of London. They say that when the ravens leave, the kingdom will fall.  Tower BridgeTower Bridge. M&M World LondonPanoramic photo of M&M World London, taken with Gudrun’s iPhone. I have to say that her phone captured the moving colors in the dispay of the store much better than mine. This is probably the only time I will say that an iPhone might be better than an Android… M&M World London M&M World London M&M World London360 Picadilly Circus at night

Cortége beer tent

The spring weather just goes on and on. Blue sky and sun all day, but it was windy today, which wasn’t too much of a problem though since I’ve been inside all day…

At 8 this morning I was in school and finished the Excel file for the thesis. We emailed it to Veidekke and is now waiting for their response. Tomorrow we have a meeting with our supervisor at Chalmers about the content in our report. So from now on it is 100% writing.

While I was in the computer room working I got a phone call from Akademisk Omtanke which is a company in Sweden who provide childcare services from part time nannies to homework help. I applied this weekend and got a phone interview today. It was just for five minutes and I think I did okay. It might not be to my advantage that I will be going to California in four months. But I hope I have the right requirements to become a part time nanny for the summer. I miss kids, and especially my sweet hostkids…

I also got an email from mom telling me that one of her friends offered to lend me some money so I can pay rent (both in Sweden and the US), flight tickets, visa and stuff like that. I can’t express my gratitude, it is so extremely kind of him!!

I had lunch outside by the pond outside of the V-department and it wasn’t too cold with a hoodie on. After lunch I had 45minutes of class and almost fell asleep during it so I actually got home after that and skipped the last part where we solve problems on our own. I took a three hour nap and was up and running lagom for a nice night in the beer tent on campus. During the ten days of building Cortége there is a big beer tent right in the middle of campus. They serve grilled food and drinks. I was disappointed the ciders were out after a while and I could only have one. After that I actually had a beer. It was okay in the beginning, but then it was just too much.

I was there with Chad and Koit, ate a baked potato with feta/sun dried tomato sauce and had a great time!

Tomorrow I can have a sleep in until 11am, I really look forward to it!!

Slottskogen

Summer came to Gothenburg early this year. This weekend has been the best and I spent both days in Slottskogen.

Yesterday the Formula team from last year were hanging out and barbecueing and I was invited to come along. I felt a bit alone, all mechanical engineers and me, a civil engineer. But I had a great time anyway. The sun was up, it was warm, I got tan, had the year’s first BBQ and watched the crazy people running Tough Viking. I read about it after and it was sick! Electrical shocks, swimming through mud and ice cold water, monkey bars and other crazy stuff. It would have been cool to do it. It definitely would have been an accomplishment, maybe in two years so I have time to exercise before.

We stayed there until the sun disappeared behind the trees. All those 6 hours of sun was enough after almost three months of pretty much no sun (compared to Cali). I was so tired so I just spent the rest of the night inside.

Me and Chad decided, before we said goodbye, to play frisbee golf today, but when I couldn’t reach him at all for three hours this morning I decided to go to his place and see if he was alive. He was and was definitely surprised when I showed up unannounced, but he was glad I did. Otherwise he would have missed out on the awesome weather today!!

We played 18 holes of frisbee gold, third time ever for me and I didn’t do too bad, even if I lost by way too many points to count. After that we rewarded ourselves with soft serve ice cream and took a walk in Slottskogen watching the animals there. Mooses, peacocks, sheep, ducks, goats and wild squirrels.

The day ended at mom’s where she made us dinner, flying jacob. It’s a chili chicken stew with bacon, cashews and bananas. One of my all time favorites! My brother was kind and drove us home and I’ve been playing Guild Wars 2 ever since. That game is ridiculously big and I have a feeling I will never be done. I’ve played for probably 250h total and I’ve only explored 50% of the world… And I haven’t even tried the PvP part of the game yet.

I think I have to take a tiny break from playing now though. I have two weeks until my thesis deadline and I have two more weeks of structural engineering classes (four until the exam) and I have to start with applying for courses at Cal Poly. Tomorrow the list of all the available classes will come up, so I need to find mine, the names of the professors and syllabi for the prerequisites classes I’ve taken in Sweden. This has to be done in two weeks as well.

In addition to all the studying and Cal Poly preparations I have a lot of other events going on. Like Cortégen (a parade built by Chalmers Students each year (I did it in 2011 and it was so much fun), birthday dinner for Dzejna, birthday party for me/mom/my cousin, job interview, dentist appointment and a funeral. I also have a book I really want to start to read, but I am one of those who can’t start reading something without finishing what I am currently reading and I am not too excited about Fifty Shades Darker. It’s not bad, but not my type of book (not fantasy).

Anyway, about that job interview! Yesterday I got an email from another Home Service office (but in another part of town which is closer and easier to get to than the one I got an interview for a couple of weeks ago), asking me if I still was interested. Today we decided to do the interview on May 5th. It sucks a bit that the interview isn’t for another week since the first place called today and offered me the job. I had to tell her that I couldn’t give them an answer yet and she was very understanding when I said it was the same job but another district. I hope I get the later one, the woman who talked about it sounded so passionate about it and told me the team was super nice and it wasn’t just old people, but every age between 13 and 98. But I would be totally fine with the first district too and I am so relieved I finally got a job! The problem is though that I probably won’t get my first paycheck until the end of July, and that would mean two months without income… But that’s a problem a month away!

Now I need to focus on my course applications and thesis!

 

Weight lossOh, right, another awesome piece of news! Since it’s been really warm out, I’ve had to leave the jeans at home and put on shorts. A year ago these shorts were kinda tight and now I have to wear a belt so I don’t drop them. They are almost too big to wear actually. 😀

Easter lunch

I had a very calm day today. Except for all the aching in my body of course. It’s hard playing that much beach volleyball in one day. That was the second time I played since I got back home and I can feel that today, my whole upper body is pretty much dead and now in the evening I’m also starting to feel it in my butt. But it was totally worth it, and it’s awesome having muscle soreness in your stomach!

What’s not so nice about my whole body aching is that that includes my tooth, or lack of tooth. It’s not exactly the hole that is hurting, but my whole jaw bone. And it’s not always, just now and then, but when it does hurt, it hurts crazy much! I am gonna call my dentist on Tuesday and ask her if this is normal. I can’t imagine it being so…

Anyway, today was all about having an Easter lunch with mom. Pickled herring, meatballs, prince sausage, shrimp cheesecake, smoked salmon and of course easter must (påskmust). So delicious! And for desert I got an easter egg full of candy. I don’t think I will ever be too old to get one of those!

I hugged my cats a lot and had a nice time on the couch with Stuff. I pet her nose and she copycat me and put her paw on my nose. So adorable! And we held hands while we watched a part of Return of the King.

In the afternoon mom and I went shopping. She needed a shoe shelf and I needed more painkillers. So we drove around to different stores and bought everything except what mom needed. We found some really cute tête-a-têtes, small easter lillies (daffodil is the correct name according to wikipedia). 5 kr for one pot so we bought one each. Really pretty on my kitchen table.

When I got home I watched one episode of Once Upon a Time and played Guild Wars 2 the rest of the evening. It’s a quite addicitive game…

I hope tomorrow brings as good weather as it was today. It really felt like summer! It was way too hot for a jacket and everything is getting greener by the day and the sky was completely cloudless. I love this season! My dad and his fiancé have a BBQ tomorrow and if the weather is as good, I will probably go out there earlier to get some of my tan back.

Swedish springThe Swedish summer is amazing. But I actually think I enjoy spring better when it is like today!

Easter Cup

This day has been so much fun! I am exhausted but happy. It takes a lot of energy to play beach volleyball. And I have to say, me and Dzejna did very well today and were this close to coming second in the group play. The first game we played we won with a lot of points. Our second game we lost with the same numbers and the third, that was the most intense game. It was so close and the first set was totally ours except that they won eventually with 18-16. The last set was also close, not as, 15-12.  We played awesome though and we were happy and cheering each other on all the time. We have come a long way!

This meant that we came third in our group which also meant that we were out of the tournament. The first and second team kept playing, but the third has to judge the next game. So as usual we had to stay for a couple more hours before we could go home… I hate that system! It’s so much better to be last/fourth and just go home. But we were also soo close to coming second. Stupid.

I had fun anyway and I look forward to the next tournament, whenever it is.

 

The weather has been awesome on this Easter eve. Blue sky and no wind, it really felt like summer today. I kinda wished we would have played outside. If it’s nice weather tomorrow again I will occupy mom’s balcony after our easter lunch together.

Easter Cup 2014My new phone has a good camera too, puh!

 

Yesterday I got a phone call from a Burger King here in Gothenburg. That was one of the places I applied for a summerjob a few weeks back. And they wanted me to come in for an interview on Wednesday. It is closer than that old people job which would be so much more convenient. But we’ll see what happens then.

In the evening I was with mom and some of her friends on their game night. They have that now and then and this time I was invited. I didn’t have anything better to do so I joined. It was a very nice evening and I taught them how to play Munchkin. It took me a while to remember, but it worked out in the end. It is a very fun roll playing card game.

Spring

This is why I love Sweden, the first warming sun of the year. It will be better though, when it starts to get green! I seriously can’t wait!

I had a very lazy day today. I woke up at noon, watched an episode of Arrow and then went outside for a walk. I walked for an hour through the neighborhood I grew up in and at the same time as it looked exactly the same, it was completely different. New buildings, all the old stores were switched. Except for Lejonet & Björnen, the ice cream cafe. I am so going there when it’s a little bit warmer!

I was actually sweating and it felt so good being out in the sun. It must have been over 10C (50F)! My tan is getting paler every week and I really don’t like that…

When I came home again I decided to stay outside for a bit more, so I sat down by the water and read for half an hour. But it got cold so I headed inside, took a nice and warm shower and watched a couple of more episodes of Arrow.

I cooked dinner for the second time since I moved in, spaghetti with meatsauce and bacon. It was really really good! I am glad my cooking skills are still there.

Tomorrow night is my second Cultural Care information meeting and this time I will give my presentation and tell the future au pairs about my year and then as usual do some interviews. It will be fun!