Thursday, December 24, 2009

It came upon a midnight clear

The day is finally here. The end of my advents calendar. It's Christmas Eve in our House, and the snow is falling heavily. It's actually perfect. I mean, snow on Christmas Eve? We usually have snow but the last years it hasn't been so much. But today it started pouring down. If you can say that about snow. We do our usual Norwegian Christmas stuff. My husband is watching all the racket in amazement. What's up with these people? What's all the fuzz.. It's just traditions that is burned into our Norwegian souls.

I feel guilty sometimes, we are the most unreligious people, yet we celebrate Christmas much harder than people who really celebrate what we are supposed to celebrate. But then again, before Christianity arrived in Norway, we had a big party at this time of year, celebrating the return of the sun. We live in the dark country, and up north we dont have sun above the horizon between November and January. The pic in the post below is taken almost at the days brightest hour. It could have been a bit brighter out, but thanks to all the clouds with all the lovely snow, it's daaaark. And lovely. All the Christmas lights really come to their right in this part of the world. Now we are about to have lunch, later I go to church with my dad and Hubby. I think that is the most important part of the Christmas Eve traditions in our house, even if it's usually just me and my dad. My mom is cooking usually. When we get home from church, we eat, and presents. We have SO many presents this year. Another thing that is not usual. We are 7 people at dinner this year. We have been 5 at the maximum, usually only 3 or 4. Therefore all the presents. We have a baby here too, and he will get most of the presents in the above pic. 

Presents or no presents, sun or snow - it's Christmas! Thank you all for following the blog calendar, it has been fun and challenging!

I wish you ALL a Merry Christmas and a fruitful new blogging yearP.S.:

P.S.: The quiz on the December 1st post, anyone? It was (drum roll) --------


All I want for Christmas is an idea for a new blog project

I almost forgot... 24 presents on the 24th of December!

Frozen river, the Santa Clause pic and our back yard TODAY!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Little Christmas Eve

I had such a good plan with today. I had this lovely picture of a bunch of my mother's little santa clause figures (She has ALOT). They were all neatly lined up in the coach and I took a nice photo. Later of course realizing they were only 21.

I have learned alot through my 2 latest blog projects.

1. I don't know the alphabet and 2. I can't count. 

Because I didn't have the motivation to line all the santas up again, AND considering the presence of my 1 year old nephew who wants everything he can't have and nothing of what he can have, there were no new santa pic. Instead I am making you jealous by showing a picture of the marzipan (?) candy my sister has made, coated with chocolate. Very yummy, I can tell you. But eating one means you have to jog for like 20 minutes or so... Christmas came at a bad time this year,  I was on the roll losing weight and eating well. And so comes the season to be jolly and gain weight. But not to worry, I haven't become a health freak and I will enjoy Christmas as I always have. And go for long walks in the SNOW. Love it. I love spending Christmas in the north. Such a shame it's so far away from everything. On Monday I left work at 1.30, walked to the trainstation. Took the train to the airport at 2, and arrived home at 1am..On Tuesday. And we were on schedule. 

Anyway, today is the night before the night here in Norway. We celebrate most tomorrow, with good food, church and presents. So tonight is decoration, preparation, and watching Christmassy things on TV. 

So today I have served you 23 candies on the 23rd of December.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


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sorry guys. i'm just too tired. 22nd December.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Threads of many colors

I went to a shop with my friend one day. I didn't know these kinds of shops existed anymore. It was FULL of sowing equipment and nitting equipment and needles and pins and buttons. It was heaven for my blog advent calendar cos there were so many similar things next to each other.

Like these threads. What do you call them, a roll of thread? Whatever it is called, they were many and nice colors and beautiful and I sneaked a picture of them. I had to crop it seriously. It was a lovely shop with SO much organization! :-)

threads on the 21st of December.

I am going home to my mama today!! Leave at 5pm and will hopefully arrive home at 00.45am... Pray there wont be any snowstorms tonight!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

hands up

So I am arranging pictures again.
Yesterday I visited my cutest friend. She has the cutest chubby little fingers. And she has 10 of them. I also have 10. So, it was obvious. She was gonna have her debut as a HAND model.

Didn't she do well??

20 fingers on the 20th of December!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

These shoes were made for walking

My lovely header photo! I like it so so so much.
I took it at the nursery I worked in back in Ghana in 2007. Every day after having lunch, the kids went to take their nap. Before that, some of the oldest kids were given the job to put all the shoes in rows outside the room.

And they did it ever so neatly.

The kids were sleeping, the teachers were sleeping, and the obroni was wondering what to do with her time. And the shoes were shouting: Snap me, snap me! :-)

There should be 19 PAIRS of shoes here, on the 19th of December!

Friday, December 18, 2009

The table is set

More on my creative side.
My sister got married this year, and as the artistic member of the family, I took the responsibility for the decorations. Mostly I took it, cos my sister is of the type that thinks everything works out in the end... But since I had gotten married only a month before her, I KNEW that for a wedding things don't just work out by themselves.

So I made the invitations and decorated the table, and almost burned down the house where we had the party cos I decorated some candles with something flammable... woops! I know the table looks very simple and maybe plain, but that's what the bride wanted.

18 places by the table, on the 18th of December.

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Hey guys!

One more week. I really appreciate all your comments! I hope you are gonna come with great ideas for the next week...after Thursday. I can't believe it's almost Christmas. I have never gone home as late as the 21st December before... I've always been a student or doing nothing, so I have had a lot of time home before Christmas. But now I'm a working class hero and I'm lucky enough to get the whole Christmas week off! Thanks to my lovely work and lovlier boss.

The ideas for pictures are getting few. I carry my camera all the time but the problem is that when I go to work it's dark and when I go home from work it's dark, so I can't really snap anything on the way. I can't post pictures from work, that's not allowed. So. Today you get to enjooy the picture of 17 Norwegian Kroner. It's a 10 and 7 1s.

About what is left in my wallet after the Christmas presents shopping. :-)

17 Kroner on the 17th of December.

And for those interested, we didn't get -23 degrees today. Only -14,5...
Now I'm just waiting to feel like wanting to clean. Got it?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

in the footsteps of yesterday

Ok, follow up from yesterday.

Here are the gingerbread cookies in full. Full of yummy nonstops... So sorry they are not in MY house. But they will be. On the 22nd. Me and hubby will definitely be baking the compulsory gingerbread cookies, in my mother's kitchen. Home sweet home....

16 gingerbread cookies on the 16th of December.

They have reported 23 degrees below zero tomorrow. Centigrades, not Fahrenheit. - 23!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

snow snow nonstop (xmas wish)

The inspirator of my blog advent calendar has been forced to contribute with a picture.

This will be a short post. Christmas is coming too fast, I think there is something I have to do that I haven't done before I travel home on Monday, but I can't put my finger on it...

Anyway, this is an excerpt (?) of Guros gingerbread house. We decorate with icing sugar and nonstop. Nonstops are color coated chocolate chips. Compulsory for gingerbread decoration....

15 nonstops on the 15th of December.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Buttons up!

So I found all these buttons in a shop in Trondheim. Love Trondheim. I'm quite indifferent to buttons, but they were cool, and together and many.

Today we are lighting the Christmas Tree in the Kindergarten after work. It's a gathering for the kids and parents. Hot dogs, Santa Claus is visiting, lottery, christmas carols... and they have reported R-A-I-N!

Ugly ugly ugly rain. We want snow. We live almost at the North Pole. Give us snow, damn it!

Ok. I will relax. 14 buttons on the 14th of December.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Everyone is an expert

When my parents visited me and my husband in Ghana two years ago, we took them round. Of course we visited my "hometown" Kumasi.
On the way back from the Garden City, we got a ride with hubby's sister's work car. We thought this was gonna make us get back to Accra faster than the dreaded Slow Transport Company (STC). We were wrong.

First of all, all the ladies had to do an hours shopping in Ejisu. They left the bus, were gone for an hour, and came back with half of Ejisu's plantain population. My parents watched in awe as they stuffed the bus beyond full with plantain and other tubers. There were no ways in or out of the bus anymore.

Not to our suprise, along the way the tyre exploded. Heavy load? Anyway.
The equipment used to fix tyres and such things hadn't been used forever and had rusted into the car - it was stuck. So what happens? Yes, the "Everyone is an expert" phenomenon hits all the guys. But that didnt help. What helped was a truck from Mali with two REAL men inside, that had equipment and skills, and heart. Bless them for stopping, my mom was about to boil away. It was noon.

So in the picture there should be 13 experts on the 13th of December. Can you spot them all?

Saturday, December 12, 2009


Nobody wants to tell me that I posted two posts on the 9th of December, cos nobody wants to tell me what a moron I am :-) Sorry for being so unprofessional, I'll straighten myself up!!

On the 12th day of Christmas...

12 cute kids from the nursery I worked in in Tema in 2007.

They are actually lining up here to sing the national anthem and recite the Lord's prayer.

But who cares when there is a weird obroni there with a camera?

Let's look at teacher Ama instead!

Lovely, wild kids.

12 is the number, on the 12th of December!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Go go go HIGH!

"Just put a picture of a football team", hubby says when I'm worrying about how to find a picture with 11 things in it. I don't feel like going out looking for a football team, so I look at my external harddisk.

And what do I find? Ghana vs. Morocco in the African Cup of Nations in 2008. We were there, at Ohene Djan magnificent stadium, after waiting, wondering, pushing in the Post Office to get a ticket to the game. Weee, I was so happy. And it was SO exciting. And we won! Yay!!

On the field there are 11 people, Morrocans, Ghanaians and the referee, on the 11th of December.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Yum, yum, give me some!

Yummy! This is Christmas in Norway. Klementiner. What is that in English? My husband calls them tangerines. Whatever it's called, they are small oranges and taste like Christmas cos for some reason, we buy these in excess in Christmas.

I guess they are in season somewhere during this time of year, and that's why they happened to be a December phenomenon here in the North. It's not like we grow them here exactly.

I buy bunches of them. I love them and they are cheap AND healthy! 3 in 1! <3

Here are 10 of them on the 10th of December.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A star is shining tonight

This is the holiest hour
Heaven is now in sight
Listen to bells that are chiming
Christmas has come tonight

Sweet are the voices high above
Singing of peace and of love
All of the world is filled with light
A star is shining tonight

Now he is resting among us
On Bethlehem's golden straw
Night giving way as we stand here
Watching this child with awe

This is one of my favorite Christmas carols, translated into English from Norwegian. If you wanna hear the Norrwegian version, click here. And, if you wanna hear my husband's choir back in Ghana sing the song in Norwegian, click here!! (He is gonna kill me now...)

Anyway, a star is shining tonight, and 9 candles are shining on my red IKEA plate on the 9th of December.

Marry me!

Wow. This project of mine is getting harder and harder each day of December that passes. It might have to do with the fact that the numers are increasing fast! Until now I have found pictures that I have already taken that fit with the numbers, but I might have to start arranging pictures.. Or take my camera everywhere and take pictures of numerous things. I see all the kids everyday and think: Oh, how easy it would be to take pictures from work, but of course it's not something I would do!

Today the choice fell on wedding invitations. These are my sister's wedding invitations, that I made for her wedding in August this year. I was very content with them. Simple yet classy and beautiful. Me like. She also liked them, luckily. :-)

9 invitations on the 9th of December.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Happy Birthday!

Today is my sister in law's birthday! Hooray for her!
Therefore, a birthday cake in her honor. This birthday cake isn't very tasty. It is made of wood.

It was our birthday present for a little angel whose 2nd birthday passed a few weeks ago. She has a little play kitchen in her house, and there are all these beautiful wooden toys, food shaped, that you can buy. Kids have so many toys nowadays, much more than they need. So if I'm first buying for kids, I want it to be a little educational (cake??) and good quality. Not only Fisher Price plastic fantastic! So I was very happy with this cake, and the birthday girl seemed to like it too!

Now you are thinking: what has this got to do with number 8? Try to count the decorations/candles on the cake.

Yep, it's 8 little removable thingies on the cake on the 8th of December!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Friends forever

On a special day now 5 months ago, this picture was taken. The girls in the photo are representing my gang of girlfriends from my hometown where I grew up. We were tight back then, in high school. We were a group of 7-8 girls and we called ourselves
"the gang". Cheezy? But so good to have someone you are so comfortable with. After high school we spread all over, and we dont talk on the phone every day or meet all the time. We meet when we go home for summer or Christmas. We have also started a tradition called "gang get together", which have been arranged on two different cities in Norway. Those who are able, travel there, and we meet and have a smashing weekend together.
This picture is taken on my wedding day. For my wedding, it was really important that I was able to get guests from all sides of my life, and I invited all the gang for the wedding. 5 of them made it, and I'm SO happy they came! I had friends there from uni and from my time in Ghana, but these friends are the oldest, the ones who come from where I come from, and who knows my whole background. And they looked SO hot all of them!

Here we are, the 7 of us. On the 7th of December.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Not Expect Power Always

And maybe expect trouble when you abuse a single plug. But when that is the only plug you have in your little single room in Mangoase, what can you do? Get a lot of extensions and plug in everything you can. This is me and hubby's creation. It went well, but I guess it wasn't the safest electrical fixture... :-) When in need....

6 things are connected into the little poor plug.

On December 6th.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

High 5

Here is a picture that is capturing 5 important people in my life.

From the left, friend Vero, my nephew Gaute, on his grandma's lap, my MOM, me (come on, we all know we are important in our own lives) and another friend, Guro.

The picture is taken on my birthday this year. We went to eat out and came home to our humble apartement to eat cake. And for grandma to spend quality time with her nephew!

5 nice people on the 5th of December.

Friday, December 4, 2009


4 little Norwegian angels in their traditional wear, captured on the beautiful 17th of May this year. At a celebration arrangement, traditional folk music was played and dancers performed Norwegian traditional dance.

But someone else also wanted to join in and stole the show. So cute.

4 little angels on the 4th of December.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Lately, I've been doing quite alot of exercise, been going to the gym about 4 times a week, getting up in the morning to run to the gym, and eating as healthy as possible. It has paid off small small, in both kilos and centimetres. One of my new eating habits consists of eating a new type of bread, healthier and without wheat flour. It's made from rye and sunflower seeds and bran (?) and... whatever. Supposed to be healthy. I don't know how much it has meant in my life, but I bake them myself and I baked 3 today, on the 3rd of December.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Hall 3

Hall 3 will always have a special place in my heart. I only spent 5 months of my life there, but it was a very significant part of my life. Hall 3 is the student block on the Dar Es Salaam University Campus, where they put the female exchange students, together with female Tanzanian students. I did one semester of my bachelor in African Studies in Tanzania in the fall of 2005. In Hall 3 I built up a relationship with my current husband. I spent 5 months in the same room as a classmate. We shared toilets and bathrooms with all kinds of girls. We had friends upstairs and downstairs and the first floor. We had a balcony with view to the Indian Ocean. We had monkeys and bush babies visiting us veeery close. And we had water shortage. In Tanzania I experienced the most extreme water shortages I have experienced during my times in Africa. Considering we were so many sharing toilets I guess it was much more noticable.

Today it is the 2nd December, therefore the picture has to include 2 things (and they have to be of the same thing). These are the two sinks on our floor that was the first place to stop on the way back to our room from lectures or town. Specially my roomate Kine went straight to the sinks when returning to the hall (especially when it had been no water when we left the building). Usually I heard her angry or disappointed shout: Hamna maji! (No water = Swahili). But sometimes you could hear an excited shriek, following by Kine rushing into the room, ripping her clothes off and heading for the shower. You'd never know how long the running water would actually run.

At night during shortages, we left the taps open, so we would be awaken by the water flowing if it happened to come. And when it did, we got up, collected water and took a shower. At 3am.

Should I repeat the fact that I love water? But I also loved Hall 3 in a funny kind of hatred-ish way.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Countdown to Christmas

Ok, Maya, you guessed it. My project up to Christmas Eve (which is the day mostly celebrated in Norway, and the day all the children look forward to), is an advent calendar. I don't know if this is a Western or a European or Scandinavian tradition?
It's anyway a tradition which includes a calendar that has 24 days. Or numbers. Some parents make 24 little gifts for their kids that they wrap, and the kids get one gift each day up to Christmas. Some calendars are mass produced with a chocolate each day. On TV they have a special advent series for the kids, that also has 24 episodes. In the kindergarten where I work, we have a calendar of gingerbread cookies. One kid gets one each day up to Christmas.

So this is my big secret - I'm having a blogging calendar. It is gonna work like this:
Each day I have to put a picture with an amount of things on it referring to the date we have. Terrible English explanation, but you understand! So we start today with picture number 1, on the FIRST of December, it's a picture of ONE thing, And this is not just a picture, it's a QUIZ!

What is on the picture?! Anyone? :-)

(By the way, the pic is copyrighted to my friend, Mario!)