uppsala, stockholm, & a heatwave

stockholm

when the wedding was over last week, we went back into tourist-mode. and, boy did we do it full-speed ahead! after a couple of days of visiting friends in different places all over norrköping, we took a little road trip to uppsala and stockholm from wednesday to friday – and it was perfect timing to do a bunch of walking and touring of two cities in the middle of a crazy, record-breaking heat wave in sweden! the heat outside wouldn’t be so bad, cause i’m so used to it in north carolina; but here, in sweden, there is no air conditioning inside anywhere. so, there is no escaping the heat – and it is stifling. buuuuut, we didn’t let any of it stop us at all! nope.

we were in uppsala, staying at lina’s brother & fiancee’s place for until friday morning, and it was so unbelievably cozy. i’m pretty sure the highlight for me was the picnic and bbq we had in the city park one night – soaking in the long, late-evening sunshine, spending time with family, roasting marshmallows, and eating s’mores. everything was magical, beautiful, and perfect.

friday, we jumped on the train and rode the 35 minutes to sotckholm – in a super stuffy train – and began a long and super gorgeous day in the capital city made up of islands. of course, we didn’t see everything (paige has got to come back to see some other great parts of stockholm), but we saw a lot – old town (gamla stan) is always one of my favorites. the buildings and alleys just take my breath away. imagining all of the people who have walked the cobblestone street for hundreds and hundreds of year… ahhh. be still my heart. so amazing.

we stayed in stockholm until after dinner, so we caught a late train home – completely satisfied, exhausted, and inspired. what a great little road trip – with my amazing girls, paige and my love.

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i just have to say, as i have before, that i am, once again, so very grateful for this life that i live. but, let me also say, that just because everything “seems” so great (though it is right now), it does not mean that i do not have times that are tough – we all do, and i have. but, all of the beauty and goodness and amazingness that surrounds me in my life, only reminds me every day to simply live in the moment – to be thankful for each day and to give thanks for all that is around me.

beauty, love, and even tough times – they all teach me the joy of being alive. and i work very hard to not take any day for granted. so this post, these photos, and these words that i have written – they are all in honor of living life – of grabbing on, letting go, and learning how we can live for today, giving thanks for every single second.

may your day be beautiful and filled with love & peace. xx

staying true to my yellow & blue.

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today is sweden’s national day – a national holiday that’s a bit like the 4th of july, but not quite so over-the-top/extreme. mother nature delivered a top notch day, perfect for doing what swedes like to do best: be outside, drink coffee, sit in parks, play, BBQ, be with family, and soak up the sun. it was super sunny all day long, and very, very warm. like i said… perfect.

we stayed home for a while, doing laundry & organizing stuff. but, then, we went to lina’s sister’s home outside of town to celebrate our youngest niece’s second birthday. it was a cozy and uncomplicated. just family, some birthday cake, a chance to catch up with each other, an evening bbq, and games/fun in the yard/pool. well, not me in the pool. the water in sweden doesn’t get bathtub warm like it does in nc. and i’m a cold water wuss.

but, instead of sharing pics of what i did to celebrate today, i thought i’d celebrate sweden’s national day with y’all by showing the two very different, but very much typical, classic sides of sweden: natural & urban. so, here come my photos from last weekend… part of it i spent in the woods and the other part i spent in the beautiful capital of sweden, stockholm.

sweden, today i celebrate you! you’re beautiful, natural, old, simple, and so inspiring. and i’m a lucky girl to be able to call you home. by the way, in case you ever wondered where my loyalty lays, here and now i confess that i am a lover of two countries and i call both of those countries home.

enjoying swedish nature at camp (with my kids from work).

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after leaving camp behind, i got on a train & headed to the big, beautiful urban city, stockholm.

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hope y’all have had a great week. it’s almost friday and the weekend is upon us! got any plans?!

peace & love.

i never really believed it until now.

american embassy

american embassy

well, by now, you all may know this…. but….

we’re moving to the states!!!! and now it is officially official.

monday we were in stockholm because my love had her visa interview at the american embassy. of course, we had no idea how that would go (same-sex issues. way more complicated than i have time to go into. and more information that you all want), so it was a bit nerve-racking. and pretty much everything was riding on this.

we made it to the embassy in time for the appointment, stood in a fairly long line outside, and then i hugged my love goodbye and sent her off into the embassy, with only the fate of the gods to leading us. i decided to take a long ass walk in the amazing sunshine, and before i knew it, my phone was ringing. my sweet love’s voice was on the other end telling me that she’d been approved! i had no idea she would find out right then and there. it felt amazing to know that that whole process was now over!

fast forward to  yesterday (tuesday) and my love got a text message saying that the embassy had sent her passport & visa back. already? after less that 24 hours!!

fast forward again to today and my love got another message. guess what?! she had a package to pick up at the post office (which is not a post office, but in the grocery store. another story.)! and yes, it was her passport with her visa in it! she now has the rights to live in the states for the next FIVE years! wow!!

so, it’s officially official. and i just wanted to share with you the amazing news. from here on out… it’s all about preparations for the big move! i’ll keep you posted, of course. wink wink. (go check out my love’s blog to read her take on the visa experience this week).

thank you, usa!! we can’t wait!

peace & love.