Thursday, April 23, 2009

Busy weekend ahead

Something very unusual has happened to me this evening - I've been bored! It feels like forever since that has happened. I usually never find time to sit down for more than a few seconds before bedtime. After dinner, I was begging Anders to go on a bike ride with me so that I would have something to do. The weather is warm and lovely, although it's quite windy. Too windy really to sit outside and read a book, which is what I really wanted to do. We had a nice little big ride, the two of us.

Tomorrow night, I've been invited to a colleague's house for a little get-together. She has been renovating her house for a while, and things are finally settling down, so she invited about 15 of us over tomorrow night for shrimp and wine. Luckily for me, I've started eating shrimp since I moved to Norway, as it's a fairly party-time fair (still not something I would choose as my birthday meal, though).

Then, on Saturday night, Gaute and I are going to a Bollywood party. All of the parents of 3rd graders at Korsvoll school are invited, and I think about 80-90 people will be there. They're serving Indian food (which I LOVE) and I'm going to try to find some Indian-looking party clothes. Last year, we went to a similar party (without the Bollywood theme) and it was really fun...

Finally, Sunday evening we got free tickets to a Lyn game. It will be the first game we're going to this season. Should be fun - and I'm sure I'll be exhausted on Monday...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


I've been going on and on for the past few months about how I can't wait until next year when I can work part-time (80%). And, then today, I went in to my principal and told him that I changed my mind and that I want to work full-time after all! The reason I decided to do it, was that I find out yesterday that I will definitely have my own 3rd grade class next year, and I decided that if I am going to have my own class, then I want to be the one teaching them all the time. I talked to my colleagues about it, and they said that it's much easier when you have them all the time, rather than trying to work around what another teacher has done with them on your day off. The teaching position I will have next year will be very different from the one I have this year, where I'm teaching 6 different classes and constantly moving from one classroom to the next. I decided that I wanted to try out working full-time in this new kind of position next year and see how that works out. Nice not to go down in salary, too...

The weather has been gorgeous today - it feels so nice to be outside. The house had been closed up all day, so when I got home it felt really stuffy inside. It's been a while since it's felt too hot to be inside!

Not too much longer until I will be feeling that all the time, though...Only about 2 months until we're in California!!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Another day, come and gone... Today was actually quite a nice day, a relatively relaxing evening, considering. Gaute is in Stockholm this week. He left at about 7 this morning and will be back again Friday evening. Last week while he was in Germany, everything was pretty crazy, but so far, things seem to be going better here now. Hopefully, I'll be saying the same thing on Thursday.

Grim is still in the hospital. They checked his MRI scans today and discovered that he has another artery which is on its way to getting clogged, so it looks like he'll be there a few more days while they get that cleared out. It sucks that he will have to stay in the hospital (I think it's incredibly boring), but good that everything is A-OK before they check him out.

I spent a lot of time this evening making sure that Espen is getting his homework done. I had a parent-teacher conference with his homeroom teacher on Wednesday which I think was one of the reasons I was so stressed last week. According to her, all of his teachers complain that he does not concentrate and goofs around too much in class and needs to work much harder. So, strict rules and intense follow-up are the things around here when it comes to Espen. Hopefully this will pay off!!

Anders had his first day of orienteering practice for the season. It seems like he had a fun time. Lots of his friends are doing orienteering, too, which makes it even quite appealing. I joked around last night and said that he might be the new generation Langaas boy making a name for himself in the orienteering world (both Gaute and his brother were really good), but Anders didn't think that would would happen. He was much more interested in football...

Johan is pouring over a golf sales catalog that came in the mail today. He is making some big decisions about what kind of equipment he needs to buy. I asked him if he was interested in taking golf lessons, but he said that he'd rather just practice on his own. I wonder if he realizes that not every golfer has their own golf cart...

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Better than a trip to the dentist

Gaute's dad had a heart attack, but he's doing fine now. I tried several different introductions to this entry, but they either sounded too serious or too flippant, so I decided to go for the direct approach.

Grim had a mild heart attack at about 11 AM on Thursday, and he has been in the hospital since then. We freaked out a bit when we heard that he'd had a heart attack, but after we visited him on Friday, I'm not scared anymore. He was lucky that he was home, and the ambulance showed up within about 6-7 minutes. They were ready for him when he got to the hospital and put a shent (?) in to open up his clogged artery. We visited him Friday afternoon and he was up walking around and looked and seemed liked he was feeling pretty good. According to him, going to the dentist was worse than this heart attack, because he barely felt any pain at all (I think that might actually say more about his dentist than about the severity of his heart attack, actually...). Anyway, it was a bit of a scare, but according the results of the MRI, he will most likely be headed home in time for his birthday on Tuesday. Yea!!! Grim is such a great guy, liked by everyone.

No pictures of Grim in his hospital gown, but I do have a few pics of the kids. The first is of Johan with the big purchase he made at the big garage sale they have twice a year at his school. He came home with a ... golf bag and one golf club! He couldn't have been more pleased, he has big plans for playing golf with Granny this summer :-).

This one is of Espen working on his bike. Espen isn't really known around the house as one who likes to get his hands dirty (strange, as I love to get my hands dirty...). Gaute forced him out to change the tires on his bike today, though. He's had studded tires all winter, and now that the snow is FINALLY gone, it's time for the other tires to get back on there. Gaute had him put on the "handyman jumpsuit" that Gaute uses when doing various jobs around the house.

Monday, April 13, 2009

The Monday after Easter

Yes, still vacation here - although this is the last day. It's cloudy and raining on and off, so it's not a day for sunbathing on the deck, which is what I was hoping for. Still, it could be worse. It could be snowing! Or I could be at work!

I just got back from an aerobics class. I try to go at least twice a week, but that doesn't always work out the way I want. Today I had no excuses, though! Gaute leaves for Germany tomorrow afternoon, and he will be gone until Thursday afternoon, so I doubt if there will be much working out for me while he's gone.

Tonight I'm taking our family, plus Gaute's parents, to the local pizza restaurant for dinner. Gaute's parents watched the kids while we were in Gothenburg, and Grim's birthday is coming up, so I figured I could kill two birds with one stone and take them out now. Added bonus - I don't have to make dinner tonight!

Gaute just put up the trampoline - a sure sign of spring! The kids will no doubt be out jumping in the rain all day. My goal now is to get everything under control here at home, so that I'm ready to face a new week tomorrow. We'll see how that goes...

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter!

It seems kind of strange to say Happy Easter today, since it kind of feels like Easter is over for me. I think I've written about this before, but Easter is not a one day event in Norway, it's 10 days long. Spring break always equals Easter break in Norway, and all school kids have the whole week off (including the Monday after Easter). Thursday through (and including) Monday are official holidays in Norway. Which means that nothing is open - no newspapers are delivered, no nothing! It feels like everyone heads up to the mountains to their cabins to go skiing, although I just read recently that only about 300,000 actually do that (in a country of 4.5 million). We, of course, headed up to the mountains.

As Gaute had to work Monday-Wednesday, we were thinking that we would head up Thursday morning. Wednesday he was only going to work a half day, but we decided to wait anyway as there was an important football game on TV. I was trying to pass it off as being something that was very important to Espen, but the truth is that I really wanted to watch it to. Liverpool vs. Chelsea in the quarter finals of the Champions League!! Surely you can understand that this was not something to miss. But, then Wednesday came around, and I started feeling pretty impatient to get going...(not the first time this has happened - see our trip to Gothenburg last weekend). So, I called the cable company to find out how much it would cost to get the channel with the football game for just a month. It was possible, and we paid the money, and I would rather not divulge the cost of it, because it was way too much money. But - whatever! We got to the cabin about an hour before the game started, and managed to finish dinner right on time. AND THEN LIVERPOOL LOST!! They have one more chance when they play Chelsea again this week, so we'll see...I'll keep you posted.

We debated whether or not we should take cross country equipment, downhill equipment, or both to the cabin. We finally decided on just downhill stuff. Despite the forecast of rain and sleet for the whole week, we got some really nice weather. We went skiing two days - Friday and Saturday. Friday was okay - we went to a resort about 45 minutes away that we hadn't been to before. It was okay, but not the best I've been to. Yesterday, we went to the little hill about 5 minutes from our cabin - and it was great. It was spring skiing at its best. Sunny and warm and wonderful. We had such a good time. This place has just one little J-bar and when you get to the top, there are only two different runs to pick from, but there's never a line and you can just keep going up and down as much as you want.

Anders and Johan did a bit of jumping, as you can see in the videos below:

We did, of course, have the obligatory Easter egg hunt in the snow, too. Espen decided to pass on it this year, but Anders and Johan ran like maniacs trying to find the eggs :-)

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Just another day

Not much going on today. Johan spent the night at a friend's house last night, and so far we've seen hide nor hair of him today. Espen is out on the football field with his friends - they usually bring a ball with them as an alibi, but it's actually the place to hang out and meet friends. Always someone up at Korsvollbanen. Anders had me drive him to the store earlier today so that he could spend some of his money. He's been saving for a while, and he finally decided to use it to buy a new football and jersey. He was pretty happy with his purchases - and headed right up to the football field, of course. He ran into a friend up there, and the two of them headed over to his friend's house.

Gaute is working today, but from his home office in the basement, so he's been popping his head up every now and then to say hi. Like he said, traffic was light on the way to work this morning ;-)

I've been spending the day trying to get various things organized around the house. Sorted out my sweaters and got rid of many that I don't use anymore. Now and I can actually see the ones I do use!

I just put a carrot cake in the oven. We have about a million carrots, since we've been subscribing to this organic fruit and vegetables thing and never use up all of the carrots. I actually cancelled the subscription this week, since the fun has sort of worn off, and I feel like I'm spending a lot of money on stuff that's not getting used. What on Earth shall I do with all of the money I save??

For dinner, I'm making a stir-fry so that I can use up some of the other veggies in the fridge. Sounds yummy - and easy!

Monday, April 06, 2009

Great trip

Gaute and I had a really great time in Gothenburg. It was the perfect little getaway for us. We were going to head down Saturday morning, but on Friday we decided there was no reason to wait, so we called the hotel to check that they had a room available for that night, dropped off the kids at Gaute's parents and headed out.

The hotel was super nice and in a great location. We parked the car on Friday night when we got there, and we didn't take it out again until we left on Sunday. Everything was right next to our hotel, more or less. I've been to Gothenburg two times before, but I appreciate it much more after this trip. Lots of really great restaurants (we at at this one on Saturday night) and great shopping. Did a lot of shopping on Saturday, and Gaute was the perfect shopping husband - stood quietly outside waiting for me (listening to music on his headphones), and then carried my bags for me when I came out. And no complaints!! Because of the exchange rate, things are about 20 % cheaper in Sweden than they are in Norway, and they have different stores and stuff, so it was pretty fun. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, too. A real warm and sunny spring day. There were people walking all over downtown and it was just really fun! I'm sure it won't be the last time we take a trip to Gothenburg. Only a 3 hour drive, and it feels like we're in a different country (oh, wait, we are...).

Today Gaute, who is not a teacher, had to work. The kids and I had the day off, though, and it was sooo nice. The nice weather in Gothenburg has made it up to Oslo, and the kids were out riding bikes and playing football today. And we got out the patio furniture and the barbecue this afternoon. Hot dogs and hamburgers for dinner - the first barbecue of the season!

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Ekeberg forever

Yippee - today my principal came and told me that they are going to give me a permanent position at my school. And he didn't say April Fool's! I am very happy about it. Nice to know that I have a job there as long as I want. Things are going really well these days. I'm finally over the hump and can truly say that I love being a teacher.

I'm celebrating this good news watching Norway's national football team play against Finland. And drinking a Corona.