feathers and ice cream.

idag börjar påsklov för mig!!

today easter (spring) break begins for me! and how did i kick off my spring break?! by blowing off school and spending the day with my love… perfect. i decided to play hooky today and get a head start on my break because of yesterday (thursday). there were only 10 people (out of 30) and we had a substitute. it’s been crazy these past few weeks. sick teachers. no teachers. busy work. meh. when you can’t count on the teachers to be there, or to provide really good lessons, then it doesn’t make you feel like school is that important. so, i figured i wouldn’t miss much today and i slept in and had a cozy morning with lina. that seemed more important to me.

yesterday, with the substitute and the 9 other students, we talked about easter week in sweden (påskvecken). it was interesting, and cool to discuss this with people from other countries, but not the most effective use of my time. language-wise. personally, though, it was pretty fun. everyone in the class was christian, except for one muslim woman. and i felt sorry for her, but she was really open-minded. we talked about the traditions around easter in sweden. (which i will share with you as the days come next week) naturally, it included some jesus-talk, which i was really into. hehe. it’s always fun when i get to use my seminary education some. and it was fun to sort of “teach” a little about the happenings of holy week… after class, i had study group with my sfi girls from my previous class. four of us met & had coffee in the cafe at school and talked more about easter traditions. now, that was super fun! two of the girls are from iraq (twins) and their family is a practicing christian family. i admire their family’s dedication to their faith. they’ve been fasting from meat and dairy products during lent, and this coming week they will spend most of their break with their family making preparations for good friday and easter sunday.  perhaps i will go visit them one afternoon next week! it feels like a good thing to do during holy week… they are an inspiring family.

with easter on my brain big time yesterday, it felt like the obvious thing to do was move into spring break mode today. hehe. so, i did!

after a great morning, lina and i headed out to grab some coffee at a cafe and then walk by the river. it was a beautiful morning in norrköping. but, of course, the sun hid behind clouds the rest of the day. so, we headed to a few stores to look around and ended up having ice cream instead of coffee. and it was taaaaasty.

swedish tradition #1: feathers

i don’t know why we don’t use feathers in the states around easter. we use eggs (as do swedes). why not feathers too? the animal most associated with easter in sweden is the chicken (not the bunny), hence the eggs and feathers. all over the city – in stores, on the streets, in homes – are branches that are decorated with all different colored feathers. i guess you could call them the “easter tree”. i think it’s fun and cool! this week, i’m hoping to decorate a few branches too and put it up in the apartment! today we saw these feathers on the street headed into downtown from our apartment. love it!

as i mentioned above, we had ice cream today instead of coffee. good decision. this ben & jerry’s store opened up less than a month ago in one of the shopping areas downtown. it’s in the middle of everything, but still cozy and fun. lina mentioned today that it was so smart for a ben & jerry’s to open here in sweden. swedes love their ice cream and they love fika, so this little store in the corner of the shopping area is going to do great!

lina had mint chocolate chip & cookie dough, and i had mint chocolate chip in a wafle cone. mmm…  ben and jerry’s. is there any better ice cream?!

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