2. How old do you feel?
Like thirty-three, but sometimes I feel a few years younger, and then I realize how many years have actually passed in real life.
3. Where do you live?
I live in an apartment in Uppsala, Sweden, together with my wife. We bought it in March 2016.
4. What have you done today?
It’s Saturday evening and I haven’t actually done that much today. Woke up around 9, drank coffee, watched YouTube, finished the series “Dark”, fixed a little in the apartment, but mostly been relaxed.
5. Summer, fall, winter, or spring – what do you prefer, and why?
I think late spring with summer just ahead of us. But I do love each season’s uniqueness; like the all of the fall colors, winter coziness, endless summer nights, and spring when everything is so green.
6. Are you addicted to something?
Acknowledgement, love, the Internet, chocolate, and coffee.
7. Mention three things people might not know about you? 1. I’m a super organized person who wants it over-the-top clean around me. So, I actually have to have goals to not clean everyday, but perhaps once a week at the most.
2. I took riding lessons for almost 10 years as a kid and teenager.
3. I’ve spent more than a year in the hospital, in total, throughout my life so far. (due to treatment of Anorexia and surgeries for my birth defect).
8. Where in the world would you like to be right now?
At a beach in Bali with my wife.
9. How are you feeling right now? Relaxed.
10. What’s your favorit candy?
11. Your favorite store(s)?
Weekday, Zara, Granit, Crate & Barrel, Michael’s, and West Elm.
12. Are you a morning or evening person?
More of an evening person than a morning person, I think. However, I’m pretty even – not going to bed that late, but not getting up that early either.
13. Have you had any stitches?
Yes, my face, my right leg, and in my mouth.
14. Who did something extra special for you last? My parents and my wife’s parents.
15. Are you shy?
Nope, I don’t see myself as shy. I can talk with pretty much whomever, in front of lots of people, or individuals. But I do get a little nervous every now and then. Especially when performing (singing and playing the piano) during an important situations (funeral, wedding etc.).
16. What’s your middle name(s)?
Maria and Viktoria, because my parents liked the names.
17. Would you like to get married?
I am married. December 26th 2009! Still going strong ♥
I’ve celebrated Christmas with my Swedish family in my hometown, and a couple of days later, Liz and I flew to the States, and celebrated a belated Christmas and then New Years Eve with our American family and friends! We’re now back in Sweden, Liz is back at work, and I’m working on figuring out a few next steps for me in life, which sounds pretty serious (and it is actually pretty important and big to me).
Let’s say, 2017 turned into a lot of unexpected turns, which forced me into some new beginnings. It’s been a roller coaster the past months to say at least, but I’m finally beginning to see the end of the ride.
I was laid off work this past fall and it wasn’t handled good at all by my former company. I’ve been struggling getting my rights upheld – my legal rights- and there has been a lot of annoying waiting time and more unexpected turns. It’s been exhausting!! However, I’m actually glad it happened to me, because it has forced me to move on to what I now believe are way better things. I cannot stress hard enough how excited I am for my new adventures coming up. It’s close to being pretty clear now! Once the contract is signed, I’ll let you know, but I do have a job offer, actually possibly two job offers, and I’m beyond excited!
So a new year, a new job coming up soon, and I’m feeling better than ever! I think I’m gonna write a post where I make a list of things I wanna do/do more of in 2018. But that’s gotta be a different post, I believe. Just wanted to say hi now, and yes, my blog is back on the regular address, and you’ll find my portfolio linked up in the main menu. I’ve also fixed a new header, as you probably have noticed already. A few small changes, but they do feel pretty darn good, I think.
What did you do in 2017 that you’d never done before? We were on a TV-show, House Hunters International, that aired in the States! So we were on American TV – crazy!! It was the first year that we didn’t go to the Swedish archipelago or the beach in the States. I didn’t have that much vacation… but, Liz’s parent’s came to Sweden and we showed them around!! And, also… I was laid off from work.
Did you keep your New Years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I usually don’t make any resolutions, but I will write down some wishes for myself that I’m gonna work on! I did reach one goal – to get healthy! The most important thing in the whole world!
Did anyone close to you give birth? No one really close, but a few!
Did anyone close to you die? Too many died in 2016, so I’ve been fortunate to not lose any close ones in 2017 ♥
What countries did you visit? USA three times. We started the year in Maine, went to New York City and North Carolina for 2.5 weeks in summer, and then ended the year in North Carolina. We visited our amazing friend, and her cute son in Ireland, and went to Germany for our friends’ wedding in the end of May.
What would you like to have in 2018 that you lacked in 2017? A new job and a chance to hang out more with friends. Plus, travel abroad more.
What days from 2017 will remain etched upon your memory? When our friends got married. When I was laid off work. When Liz’s family came for visits ♥
What was your biggest achievement of the year? My health!
What was the best thing(s) you bought? The trips to Ireland, Germany, and the States! My Nintendo Switch and my MacBook.
What was your biggest failure? Perhaps to not have as healthy of a lifestyle as I wanted to. Take walks, work-out, eat better and so forth. But I’ve been mentally tired, so I’ve needed a lot of rest and recovery time on the couch with Netflix.
Did you suffer illness or injury? No, thank goodness!! The only thing that happen was a migraine I got one time, like I’ve never experienced before.
Whose behavior merited celebration? Liz, my parents and Liz’s parents. Liz for always being there for me, my amazing wife. My parent’s for good advice and patiently listening to my phone calls filled with thoughts, cries, and questions. Liz’s parents’ for always being there and deciding to pay a trip for us to the States over New Years.
Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? My old job.
Where did most of your money go? Flight tickets and food. Oh, and my Nintendo Switch and MacBook!
What are you really, really, really excited about? To get a new job!! To travel to some new places in the world, go to the archipelago and beach week 2017 with the American family!! Perhaps fix our apartment a little (closets).
What do you wish you’d done more of? Travel. Been in contact with friends. Creative stuff.
How did you be spend Christmas? In Norrköping, Sweden at my parents’ house and at my sister’s house. Flew to the States just a couple of days later to celebrate a delayed Christmas there and New Years with friends ♥
What was your favorite month(s) of 2017? July/August – we went to the States and then Liz’s parents flew back to Sweden with us!
Did you fall in love in 2017? Yes, even more with Liz, my wife for eight years ♥
What was your favorite TV program? Världens tuffaste jobb with Carina Berg and Wahlgrens Värld. However, I’m not really watching that much TV. Mostly documentaries and TV-series on Netflix and HBO Nordic.
Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year? I don’t do the hating. But I do feel anger towards a few.
What was the best book you read? Oops. I haven’t read that many books…gotta work on that. 2017 has been the year of podcasts for me.
What (was the best) serie(s) you watched? The Walking Dead, Fear the Walking Dead, Outlander, The Fosters, Greenleaf, Stranger Things, The Good Wife, Shooter, The OA, American Odyssey, Glitch, Good Witch, Alias Grace, Godless, Narcos, Captive, Anne with an E, House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, 13 Reasons Why, Jessica Jones, Orphan Black, Ozark, Limitless, Scorpion, Doctor Foster, Big Little Lies, The Good Fight, Designated Survivor, and probably a few more I’ve forgotten now.
What did you want and get? Good health, a UX-design certification, Nintendo Switch, and a MacBook! Oh, and a possible new job (not 100% sure yet though..)!! A girls weekend in a summer house together with old friends!
What did you want and not get? Some trips and an iMac.
What was your favorite film of this year? Have no idea. Watched mostly series (obviously!), so check the above list of series ↑
What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I turned 33 and celebrated it by attending my friends wedding in Germany! An amazing wedding in an old church in a small idyllic village in the middle of beautiful nature. Great people and I got to sing and play at the wedding ceremony! Before my actual birthday, Liz, my brother and his wife, surprised me with a dinner at one of my favorite restaurants in town – Jay Fu!
What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? To not have to go through the crappy process of being laid off work.
How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2017? High raised jeans, t-shirts (long and short ones), cozy sweaters, and sneakers. Also a bunch of cozy clothes since Iv’ve been home a lot.
What kept you sane? Liz and my psychologist(s). My parents. Listening to music, studying, creating, taking pictures, filming, playing video games, hanging out with friends and family.
Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? Several people who live a creative life in various ways – they’re not true celebrities in the way you think of celebrities though..hehe!
What political issue stirred you the most? Donald Trump.
Who did you miss? Friends and family…♥
Who was the best “new” person (people) you met? People in the same/similar job or business area I’m in. So. Much. Fun. So many great souls with a passion for design/UX-design. A friend of our friend who got married in Germany. We road tripped together in Germany and had a blast! Also, we got to hang out with our producer director (nowadays our dear friend) from House Hunters International. Had so much fun!
Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2017 Don’t waste your energy on some people who you’ll never get energy from (the same as last year and the year before that, and the year before that..hehe) and to get healthy and free will take its time BUT IT’S SO WORTH IT! By losing my job, I’ve realized how freaking awesome I am. Hehe. I mean, I’ve learned so much about laws, my rights, others’ rights/mistakes, what I can do, how easily I learn stuff, how good I am at writing stuff, explaining stuff, sharing my knowledge, and what strength I have inside of me! I can do whatever! BAAAAAM! Screw “jantelagen“!
What’s the best with Christmas?
It’s cozy in the midst of all the darkness. We light a lot of candles, listen to music, spend time together with family and friends, and eat yummy stuff (read Swedish candy and American Christmas food).
What’s the worst with Christmas?
When people are stressed out and want that “perfect” Christmas so the stress takes over, and it’s not enjoyable. Also to have family and friends in different parts of the world.
Stockholm at the Old Town Christmas market in December 2016
Christmas sausage or Christmas ham?
None. I don’t eat meat.
Ribs or Janssons (fish casserole)?
Again, I don’t eat meat so the traditional Swedish Christmas food is not for me. However, if we skip the fish in Janssons, I’ll take that.
Glögg (mulled wine) or Christmas soda (julmust)?
This one is hard, I don’t drink much of either one of them..however, I do believe I choose… No I can’t decide.
Gingerbread cookies or lucia buns (saffron)?
Lucia buns, for sure!
Skumtomtar or knäck? (types of candy)
Hmm… Probably skumtomtar since I’ll know for sure they’re yummy. Knäck has to have the perfect temperature, taste, and balance in order for me to like them.
Give or receive Christmas gifts?
Both! I love the process of figuring out what to get a person, wrap it, and see the person open the gift. However, I also enjoy getting gifts as well.
At Rockefeller Center in New York City, December 23, 2016
Favorite Christmas movie? National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. It’s a must to watch it late on Christmas Eve.
Favorite Christmas TV calendar?
Favorite Christmas song?
All I Want for Christmas is You – Mariah Carey
Mary Did You Know – Pentatonix
Favorite Christmas scent?
When is it time to put up the Christmas decorations and ornaments?
We always do it directly after Thanksgiving. We don’t have alot of decorations, but we hang stars in all the windows, put up the Christmas tree, and change our blankets to more Christmas-like ones. Oh, and have a lot of candles everywhere.
When is it ok to put up the Christmas tree?
Whenever you want to!! Nowadays, my American wife and me mix both cultures and traditions, and also create our own so we put it up right after Thanksgiving (if it’s not a real one). If it’s real, we most likely do it during the first or second week in December. When I grew up, we put it up (always a real tree) around the 20th of December so just a few days before Christmas.
When do you open gifts on Christmas? We open both on Christmas Eve (Swedish tradition) and on Christmas Day (American tradition). We get stockings in the morning.
Christmas Eve in Sweden 2015
What are you gonna do on Christmas?
Christmas Eve/Christmas Day: I’m gonna wake up at my parent’s house, eat breakfast with a fire in the fire place, Christmas music playing in the background, and hang out with my family. Later on we’re going to my sister’s house and spend the afternoon there with more family. On the 26th (which is also our wedding anniversary!!) we’re flying to the States and will spend ten days there ♥
New Years Eve?
We’re gonna hang out with friends in Asheville!!
Hope you’re having an awesome start to the holiday season (if you’re into those kind of things). I must say, Liz and I have made it really cozy here at home with stars in the windows, a Christmas tree that is up and decorated, and last night we drank mulled wine and ate a typical Swedish Christmas saffron bun. When typing this, I’m also listening to Christmas music with candles lit around me; so in other words, the Christmas spirit has arrived, and I love every single bit of it.
We’re celebrating Christmas Eve (the Swedish way) at my parents’ place this year, but flying to the States on the 26th to spend some quality time with my in-laws and friends there. So pretty much the best of both worlds this holiday season, which is super fun!
We decided to film and make a YouTube video while decorating this year, so let’s check it out here below ♥ Happy First of Advent!!
This is how I’ve felt lately… separated into different pieces because life turned me in a completely opposite direction then I expected. But you know what? I think that this process that I’ve been forced to go through will actually turn into something amazing – something way better than I could have ever imagined! So even though I’ve felt like I’ve been in split into pieces, I think I’ve put myself together again, one piece at a time. I know where I wanna go, and hopefully how to get there!
I’m gonna find a dream team to work with, in an amazing work place, with fun, interesting, and exciting projects where I get to be creative and have loads of fun! YEAH!
(I haven’t mentioned anything about it at all, but in the end of September, I was laid off work due to their bad economy. So I, along with three others, were made to leave. Long story short, there’s still a process going on with that, which I’ll not get in to. But, while not working, I’ve studied a class, gotten a certification in User Experience Design (UX-design), and worked on my portfolio. So now I’m ready to hit the job market again! Wish me luck ♥).
Autumn’s got Liz + Lina feeling all nostalgic. So join them in this episode for a little Q+A about what they were like as kids growing up in two different decades and in two different countries. Find out what happened when they got in trouble, what their best memories are, and how they define family today.
“They’re not treating me fairly!”, said a sobbing Lina, hardly able to make herself clear through her tears.
She asked me to explain the whole situation, listened carefully, and eventually told me to go and wash my face in cold water because it would feel good to my bright, red, tear-streaked face. She knew me so well. Even though I knew deep inside of me it might have been me that had not been treating my siblings fairly, it always felt she was on “my side” of the whole story, and that’s what I needed right then.
Between my private violin lesson and my orchestra practice, I always went to their big apartment, located right in the middle of downtown. We had fika, talked and talked, and they listened and listened. During the summer months, when they lived in their summer cottage, out in the country side, which I truly wasn’t a big fan of (most likely because the rugs weren’t as cozy as in their downtown apartment, and the toys weren’t as many), I spent a lot of time there anyway. We played ice cream store through the kitchen window, where I always ordered an ice cream boat. We went to the lakes and swam.
One time, when my youngest aunt lived in another city, and they were going to visit her, I joined them, and we surprised her. I was standing behind the door when they rang the doorbell, and jumped out from my hidden place, and we all screamed “Surprise!” That was the same trip where I got really upset when we were walking downtown, until they bought me “Tårtspelet” – a board game. I was so excited then that I forgot I was upset. We also played endless of rounds of card games at their dining table, while eating chocolate and drinking apple cider. If I was lucky, and had been nice, while walking downtown, helping out, I could get beautiful angel book marks. The beauty was that I never expected anything, it was just something extra every now and then. What truly was the most important, was the endless amount of hugs and love I always felt from them.
Once I got a little bit older, I started cleaning and helping them out every week, ran to the store for them, or picked up pastries from the bakery just down the stairs, in the same block. It was a time I felt I could help them and be there for them when they needed it. When I needed help with school work, I could always ask him, and then I was stuck forever, since he literally knew e v e r y t h i n g, and therefore told me e v e r y t h i n g. Sometimes he could move over to start talking about the native Swedes and what life was like up north in Sweden. We were a great team.
The years passed, and I moved to other cities, and even countries, and I couldn’t see them as often as I wanted. However, I tried to always keep them updated, by sending post cards, and/or letters, and whenever I was in town for a visit, I always paid them a visit as well.
Tears are streaming down my face right now.
Tears of happiness that I got to have them in my life. Tears of joy of all the memories I have.
But also tears of sorrow. I miss mormor and morfar so bad.
Today, a year ago, was the last time I saw my mormor (grandma), talked with her, and hugged her. We looked at old photo albums, talked about the past, and laughed in the present moment. And when it was time for me to leave, we both knew. We knew it was the last time we would see each other in this life. My morfar passed away three years before her, and I knew they were finally gonna be together again soon. It was the right thing. It was time. However, it’s so easy to be selfish in moments like this, because I miss you so much, mormor and morfar..
Liz and Lina are back for a second season of their podcast! In today’s episode, hear a tiny bit about what they’ve been up to, but mostly just get geared up for a fun season of laughter, interesting topics, personal stories, tips, and thoughts about living life to the fullest. Grab a beer or a coffee and let’s chat!