2009 vs 2013

To the left Vince playing live building blocks with Edgar in 2009. To the right Vince building onsleeping Eds 2013.


Hamstering Up

On good ol’ Styrian food and friends. A day at the vineyard Krainerhof outside Lannach, is a given on any of our Austrian trips, a tradition dating back to the beginning of our history in 2003.
Käferbohnen with pumkin seed oil dressing.

Eds and Mr B sharing a cheese plate and fresh pressed apple juice

The hills.

Driving home on the Autobahn between Graz and Vienna in the night brings back many memories. I have driven there many times. After Mr B and I first met, I was working in Vienna for a while and he was in Graz ( before he moved to Mexico, and I moved to Detroit to be closer – global thinking 🙂 ). I spent all the weekends in Graz and drove back to Vienna on Sunday night. Two kids later, driving the same road together in a pleasant silence was almost magical!
Tomorrow more Austrian adventures!

Back in Austria

We are back in Austria and it is a mysterious feeling of feeling home. I feel home in Sweden too, actually wherever we unpack our bags we feel at home, but still this is special! It has been almost one year since our move to Sweden, and this is my first time back. B and the kids went in the summer.

Anyways, we booked a flight from Copenhagen directly to Vienna, and in the planning phase train from Gothenburg to Copenhagen seemed like a great idea. Then the closer we got, the more nervous I got about travelling with wild and wilder. However, the kids were amazing!!! Vince was really excited and stayed calm, only bribe was a Subway meal for lunch to bring on the train. Edgar still had a fever but was really in a great spirit too.
Vince fell a sleep before the plane left, and Edgar a few minutes later. Mr B slept too and I spent the flight reading magazines, just like in pre-kids days.
Getting on the train at home.
On the train
Waiting for dinner at the airport


Third gate change in 20min…

Whose kid is that?

At Vienna International Airport 10.30 pm

The Non-Swede

We have been in Sweden for 9 months now. So how is Mr B, the only Non-Swede in the family taking our move to Sweden?
Well, for starters he has an ultra-Swedish job, working for Volvo.
Furthermore he claims to love Thursday and the standard food of yellow pea-soup that is served then. He has mastered the art of “fika” (coffe and cake break people, not Austrian fika (google that if you dare)). He drinks milk to most meals, making the four of us consume around 15 liters of milk a week.

He has Swedish classes at work, and he has moved up to a new level. He is now in a class with some others who have been here for more than five years. He understands everything and is doing a great job talking seedish to everyone, eventhough most people keep talking english to him.

Things we still need to get used to:
– cash is not king. You can not pay busses, train, trams etc with cash
– January: seriously, can someone just scratch this gray crappy month?
– rigid Swedes – is there no way to convince bureacrats, offices etc to not ALWAYS follow the correct procedures ( my God!)?
-people not saying Hello/How are you when you are at the cash register/ waiting in line at the bus etc.
– the banks do not handle money. If you need to get cash and cannot use an atm for some reason, you need to call ahead if you want more than 5000 sek (500euro ca). Also you can not deposit cash into your account very easily… At least not at a bank. True story!
-kebab-pizza, I guess you have to be Swedish to understand that. I will get him to like this one day!
-bearnaise-sauce served to EVERYTHING. Swedes do not even realize this.


Moved In

We are pretty much all moved in. A few re-arrangements and we should be done. All that remains to be unpacked are two boxes, and a lot of things to hang.
The apartment is nice and considering the fact that we were unable to see it before we moved in,w e are satisfied. We are hoping to find a house within a year or so.

The kids started Kindergarten this week. Vince loved it from the get go and there was no issues at all. He recognized it when we drove by and was excited to go. Edgar on the other hand was more than a bit skeptical. He really, really loved his old KiGa. The first three days he would not let me more than a meter away, and finally on day four I HAD to run errands and get a few things set up. He was unhappy to say the least when I left, but when I called KiGa a few minutes later he was fine. So that is hopefully all set up now. Both kids stayed almost the whole day on Friday.

Mr B started working on Tuesday and he likes it so far. He is getting used to the numerous ‘fika’ breaks that are a must in Sweden. Basically it is a coffee break that usually involves some type of cinnabons. It happens at least two times during a work day (plus after breakfast and lunch, sometimes after dinner too).

I start working on Monday and I am excited about that. I will commute for about 45 min, but that should be fine. There is a new train track being built and it opens in Dec,so travelling time will be reduced than. I will also be able to work from at home a few days a week. Swell and dandy.

What else did we do?
We got declined to officially re-enter Sweden as Swedish citizens. They requested a lot more data and I was to call in on a certain day to  answer all the questions. Turned out we were fine, they were confused about the two applications (one for me and the kids and one for Mr B who arrived later).

We had a Dr’s appointment with Vince new Dr and he seems good, well informed about DS and listen to us.

We got the cars imported, which was a bit more difficult than originally explained due to that could only be done at a few specific locations in Sweden. That was awesome. Not.

First meal at home!

Breakfast. Not sure what the story is about the helmet….

Oma and Opa had packed some Easter gifts!

An Opa built Volvo truck!

Last Day in Austria

and I got a good hilly alp run in!

Photo credit to Vincent.

And if it is snowing in Sweden when we arrive tomorrow, we are moving back. Just so you know.

Good Bye Graz

Thanks A and H for a lovely evening!

Team Vincent and Team Edgar

Tomorrow is the last day in KiGa for the kids. I am extremely thankful for the superb teams our kids have had there. There is so much love there and both of the kids have always felt safe, loved and supported there. You know how some people are just perfect for their job? Well we were lucky enough to have 9 perfect teachers for our kids in KiGa. What more can you wish for as  a parent than personnel that genuinely loves and enjoys caring for your kids?

We are also saying good-bye to Vincent’s therapy team he has had for almost three years. I am amazed at these people. I am so thankful to have been in a place where there has been so much trust in Vincent and his ability, yet enough of a challenge to keep him motivated to keep learning. He has learned how to be more independent and they have challenged him to handle things like getting dressed (with jacket and shoes) alone, going to the bathroom alone, more advanced fine and motor skills, turn taking and rule understanding. He has also learned how to talk. He no longer whispers and lately everyone is telling me how much he speaks. We have had some ups and downs with the communication, but I am so thankful for this team and for that they stuck with us.

The movers are about to hit our home and I need to get going.
Here are the gifts for our teams. Thanks again bestest Miriam for taking the pictures.

Good Byes

Every day are final good byes (for now) of friends.  It sucks. Emotionally draining and sad. Doors will close and new ones will open, still saying good-bye never gets easier….

About Time Now

About that half marathon: my legs are dead. I stretched but can’t walk upstairs and even less downstairs.

About that move: Movers are coming on Thursday. We have done nothing. Movers do everything incl taking things off the walls, take furniture apart, pack everything and move it. Well in Sweden they are also doing the complete unpacking.

About our departure: Kids and I are flying on Monday April 2. Lovely current company called in a BIG favor and made Mr B work on Monday. He will take the car train fr Vienna on Monday night and arrive in Sweden on Tuesday.

About leaving Austria: sad. We have spent 6 years (and two weeks) here and we have enjoyed it tremendously. People are friendly, helpful and nice and we will miss Graz a lot (well maybe not the bureaucracy). It is great that as Mr B comes from here we will always return once or twice yearly.

About Sweden: Please come visit us!

About me: Who would have known, fat screen stays but I ordered the new i-phone;)