Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year's Eve in Visby


Light Snow, -4ºC (feels like -8º)

Wind: 11 km/h, direction NE

Pressure: 1000.0 mb, steady

Humidity: 91%, Dew point: -5ºC

Visibility: 3.2 km, UV-index: 0, Low

Friday, January 1, 2010

1:55:35 AM

Lunation 1076

Moon is just past full

98.214% illumination

15d 12h 52m since new moon

Next full moon is a Wolf Moon

Sun Rise/set Sun: 8:30 AM/3:13 PM

Natical Rise/set Nautical Twilight: 6:49 AM/4:54 PM

Moon Rise/set Moon: 4:10 PM/9:05 AM

New 12/16/09, 1:04 PM

Q1 12/24/09, 6:38 PM

Full 12/31/09, 8:14 PM

Q3 1/7/10, 11:41 AM

Longitude/Latitude 18.03/57.63

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


For New Year’s Eve:

Nyårsafton = New Year’s Eve

Gott nytt år! = Happy New Year!

Tvåtusentio = Two thousand ten

Raketer = Fireworks

Nyårslöfte = New Year’s resolution

Trerätters middag = Three course dinner

Finklädd = Dressed up

Skål! = Cheers!

Midnatt = Midnight

Nattmat = Evening snack

Vill du gifta dig med mig? = Would you marry me?

Ja, såklart! = Yes, of course!

Jag älskar dig = I love you

For New Year’s day:

Huvudvärk = Headache

Vätskebrist = Dehydrated

Skräpmat = Junk food

Det här är min sista cigarett! = This is my last cigarette!

Nikotinplåster = Nicotine patch

For January 2nd:

Vad kostar ett gymkort? = How much is a gym membership?

Träna = Workout

Nyttigt = Healthy

Promenera = Walking

Nej tack = No, thank you

For 2010:

Nystart = New beginning

Återhämta = Recovery

Olympiska Spelen = The Olympic Games

Heja Sverige! = Go Sweden!

Läsplatta = Portable reading device or e-book

Sparkonto = Savings account

Alice i Underlandet = Alice in Wonderland

Solförmörkelse = Solar Eclipse

Val = Election

Kungligt bröllop = Royal wedding

Fotbolls-VM = The Football World Cup

Lycka = Happiness

Hälsa = Health

Välgång = Prosperity

Thanks to SwedishBlog

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Friday, December 11, 2009




3 cups wheat flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup warm water

2 teaspoons dry yeast

1/2 cup butter (salted)

3/4 cup milk

1 g saffron

2 egg yolks, beaten with 1 tablespoon water

32 raisins

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Combine 1 tablespoon sugar, warm water, and yeast in a bowl. Wait for yeast to bubble and foam.

In a saucepan combine butter, milk, and saffron.

Heat until warm and butter is melted, do not boil.

Let cool off for 8 minutes.

Add milk mixture to yeast in the bowl.

Add flour and 1/2 cup sugar and beat until dough is smooth.

Lay out dough on a lightly floured surface and knead for 1 minute. Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover loosely, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour.

Divide dough into 16 pieces.

Roll each piece into 1-inch-wide, 6-inch-long strips.

Coil ends in opposite directions, forming a tightly curled inversed S-shape.

Place on a baking sheet and let rise for another hour.

Brush buns with beaten egg yolk and place 1 raisin in the center of each curl, 2 per bun.

Bake 10-15 minutes until golden brown.


This weekend is special for Swedes. On the 13th of December people observe a tradition that to most is just as beloved as Midsummer or Christmas – the Lucia Day.
"It's a beautiful tradition the young people should inherit"

Saint Lucy Day is observed in many countries, but the Swedish tradition exceeds the church rites for a special reason. As the name reveals, Lucia is a figure symbolizing light. Winter nights in this Nordic nation are very long, and people yearn for an end of the darkness that shrouds a good part of the days as well. In the Julian calendar of old December 13th marked the longest night of the year, winter solstice, the turning point that promised lighter and warmer days.

So in the Swedish tradition Lucia is an angel-like figure in a white gown with a red sash, bearing a crown of lit candles. She leads a procession of candle-bearing maids and boys in pointed hats holding up star symbols, thus expressing the power of light and its magic powers.

Thanks to Sveriges Radio SR

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Banker Bash!

Painting by Zina Saunders

Okay. I don't usually indulge in his kind of thing, except by quoting other people. But when the egregious behavior is aimed at you, I think it's fair to fire back. First Community Bank of New Mexico, knowing full well that I'm living on a fixed income (on the first of every month the check from Social Security comes through them, for which they already charge any number of fees), played this little trick last week: On the last day of the month, thinking that it would "probably" clear, I withdrew about $30 - big mistake - but I did it because I'd been hit by a number of big bills in the last month and was getting hungry. They declared an overdraft, which is certainly legal (although a $30 fee might be considered usury). But THEN, in less than 24 hours, but 12 or so hours before my monthly check arrived they charged an additional $3 "electronic service fee" for which, big surprise, there were no available funds, and proceeded to rape me with another $30 overdraft! And bankers, who are always assuring us that "they're our friends and neighbors," wonder why everybody hates them. Well, Bongo, I know who I'd like to see strung up in the coming Revolution!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

New family stuff.

I’ve updated the Family Tree with a lot of new information and some new photographs. Thanks to Katarina Löfroth for additional information about the Tigerschiöld family, particularly that her brother Malcolm is alive and well! This is not the first mistake I’ve made and surely won’t be the last. After what Katarina had to go through to reach me, I’ve added a direct link to my email address, very discreetly (to avoid spammers) at the bottom of the front page - below the sawn oak. Please let me know of oversights, mis-spellings (sorry Vivian) or any other incorrect information and I’ll fix it as fast as I can.