|Swedes ride their bikes even in winter. If they can find them.|
|Getting the mail can be a challenge...|
2. Playing in the snow. There was so much snow last time we visited in December that even the locals found it astonishing. I'm hoping there will be enough this time for snow angels and toboggan rides!
3. Snuggling up in the dark. Northern Sweden doesn't get a lot of sunlight in the winter. In Skellefteå, the sun will just barely creep over the horizon in the daytime before setting again. This can be kind of depressing I guess, but when you have some candles, some Christmas treats, and a cup of glögg (Swedish mulled wine), it doesn't feel so bad. It will also make it easier to convince my jet-lagged kids that it really is the middle of the night when they wake up at 3 am...
4. Shopping for winter gear. I'm hitting up the local clothing stores for the after-Christmas sales, mainly to try to find some bargains on kids' winter clothing. Snow suits, jackets, ski pants, snow boots, even simple stuff like gloves and toques... the quality of the winter gear that is available over there is often a lot better than what I'm able to find where we live in British Columbia. And when it's on sale, I can usually find some excellent deals. If you're in Sweden, Lindex, Åhlens, Polarn o Pyret, H&M, and KappAhl are good bets for kids' clothing.
- pastries from Lilla Mari, the coffee shop located just beside my parents' apartment
- salty licorice
- Swedish Christmas ham
- all the different varieties of Swedish cheese and crispbread
- my mom's home-made black sausages (like black pudding in sausage form)
- my dad's home-baked breads
Leo's playland is packed with slides, ball rooms, trampolines, and more. There are lots of places like this where we live in Canada, but in Skellefteå, it was kind of a novelty when Leos opened two years ago. It can get pretty intense in there when it's Christmas holidays, really cold outside, and every family is looking for somewhere for their kids to burn off some energy. Getting the kids in there is easy; getting them out... that's a different story!
And in case you're wondering exactly where Skellefteå is: take a look!
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