2013. Wow, the year is almost over. It’s been a year of high and lows, growth and maturity (for all of us!) and a lot of fun!
It’s been a year of so much variety: from extremely hot, sunny days to freezing cold, dark days.
There has of course been four lovely birthdays to celebrate
Special experiences for each of the the boys (including falling in love, riding an elephant, starting preschool, learning to stride ride and celebrating Halloween)
A lot of travelling for M,
but thankfully lots of travel together as a family in Europe (winter in the north of England, spring in Rome, fall on Mallorca)
as well as our wonderful summer backpacking around Germany
and lovely trips within Denmark (Langeland, Louisiana, Copenhagen, Voerså, Aarhus, Møn, Egeskov slot and Assens)
visits from grandparents
and well, everyday life – whether it be grocery shopping at the farmers markets, endless hours playing with trains and lego, studying Danish, hygge time or working: 2013 has most certainly been a wonderful year!
In Denmark, playgrounds are not neccessarily conventional playgrounds we see elsewhere in the world – there are often no swings/slides. Children are encouraged to be creative and make use of the space they’re offered – especially if like us, you are without a car and live downtown! Here’s our favourite play areas from this year
1. Brandts Passage – a stones throw from our apartment this pedestrian area has some fun climbing structures, slopes to ride your bike down and in the summertime, a huge sandpit. There is often something going on there as well as lovely boutiques, coffee shops and cafes.
2. Munke Mose – a long, winding, large park in the centrum, Munke Mose has endless areas of entertainment for kids including ducks to feed, paths to bike ride or walk along, a gorgeous river, bridges to wander over and a few lovely playgrounds.
3. Fruens Bøge - We were stoked when we first rode our bikes along the river for 20 or so minutes out of the centrum and came across this fantastic spot: a huge lake, an ice-cream stand and an amazing forest full of fantastic climbing trees and interesting structures. This has been a definite favourite area for my boys.
4. Musikrummet – while this playground is further out of town, it is well worth the visit. It is a huge space with a variety of musical instruments mainly made up of recycled pieces. It is so unique and the children spend ages entertaining themselves and you!
5. Stige Ø - north of Odense is a windy and ‘hilly’ (for Denmark) area that has fantastic slides for the children as well as an ice-cream stand and some simple hikes you can do as a family.
These have been our family favourites this year, I’m sure there are many more. We are just so thankful for these creative spaces for our children to play!
… this colouring roll for kids – this would be perfect to put up when we have our next family trip to a remote summer house
I have recently come across a lovely online store in the UK called Little Scout. It is catered for little boys. And their products are just wonderful. I could purchase everything in this store for my sons. But if I had to narrow it down, here’s my top picks.
For my 3 year old who loves to dress up:
For my 6 year old who loves to create:
For discovering our world by night:
For the times we need to sit still and play quietly (eg. enroute to a new location):
To my crazy workaholic husband: Happy Birthday!
I posted this photo as he is so often working these days it’s such a precious moment to see him relaxing (as opposed to sleeping or working!) in Mallorca last month. Our lives in Odense are happy but so incredibly taken up by work and the kids, lately we’ve been spending so little time together. So, I’m really looking forward to spending his birthday with him (I may even have a few surprises up my sleeve!) Loving you today and forever my darling M, xo, A.
I always know that by my husband’s birthday (tomorrow: Happy Birthday my darling!) that winter is really on it’s way. As per my previous post, I’m really not too scared about this winter as I’ve learnt to adjust to the Northern European cold. Lately I”ve been really enjoying three things to get through these long, dark, cold evenings:
I love sipping on Celestial Seasonings India Spice Chai – it’s decaf. so after a day filled of strong Danish coffee, I don’t feel guilty drinking this in the evenings (and can still fall asleep)
Husband and I have become addicts to a chocolate (Ecuador Caramel Crunch: I could not find a direct link but I found a few reviews) we’ve found in the budget supermarket Lidl (we’re pretty picky about chocolate and this is honestly the best we’ve ever had).
Finally, I’ve been wearing these amazing thermal socks – Heatholders – which in fact do keep my feet so snuggly and cosy that I don’t even need my Ugg boots on in our cold apartment (so much so I’ve had to steal them back from my youngest son who keeps stealing them! I also have a couple of their (surpisingly stylish!) thermal vests that will come in handy when I go cross country skiing in January.
It is always the small things in life isn’t it?!
Thank you to Heat Holders for helping me keep warm with the socks and thermal underwear!