Växtförsäljning’s Christmas Market Review

Växtförsäljning’s Christmas Market Review

Don't try to say "växtförsäljning" three times fast unless you are from a Scandinavian country or unless you want a tongue twister challenge.Växtförsäljning translates simply into "plant nursery" and our local nursery sells wonderful plants, bushes, and trees during the year and converts into a Yuletide haven during the third Advent weekend.This Christmas Market was the last in our Christmas Market Marathon and the kids were feeling the holiday fatigue. Too much Christmas cheer, perhaps? You know it's been a few long weeks in a row when the promise of warm waffles and pony rides stirs little excitement in this bunch.But they dug deep and somehow mustered the strength in their little bodies to hop on a cute pony and ride around a few laps.The restaurant/cafe on site at Växtförsäljning is one of those hidden gems that not many people know about in our sleepy town of Åkersberga. I know that because whenever I head there for a casual lunch...
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Länsmånsgården’s Christmas Market Review

Länsmånsgården’s Christmas Market Review

Continue to live vicariously through our journey to various Christmas Markets in our Swedish town and beyond. So far, we have traveled north to Sigtuna, and Gävle, and stayed closer to home to Wira Bruk, and now Länsmansgården. Länsmansgården is an old mid-18th century property featuring a manor and two-story cottage built in 1743. The historic buildings now house antiques and the main manor serves as a local art gallery, and the barn is now a cafe that serves up dynamite fika desserts and coffee with a cozy atmosphere to boot. Our kids love playing in the garden, which also houses school children's class projects as part of an "outdoor classroom." Different classes plant crops and see how they fare during the season. We love visiting Länsmansgården on a regular day and they always host cultural festivities during midsummer and Christmas. New additions from years past: a new Swedish fence surrounds the property, presumably to keep out the wild boar that destroyed Grade 4's...
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The Gävle Goat Survives

The Gävle Goat Survives

Gävle, Sweden is famous for this oversized straw goat. It's only famous because vandals burn it down every year much to the sadness of the townspeople of Gävle.Or are they really sad when the goat burns down? It is hard to tell, exactly, because on one hand, the goat is a main tourist attraction. On the other hand, they sang fire-related "burn it down" songs during the opening ceremony which left this tourist feeling a bit conflicted.So...do they want it burned down or not?My guess is, they want to keep the goat for as long as possible but it is somewhat of a foregone conclusion that the goat will eventually meet it's fiery fate.We traveled the two hours to Gävle and saw this big goat for ourselves. Frankly, it's not much to write home about. The town of Gävle itself is somewhat of a normal place, which means it's kind of boring.It's a place where people live and work—the only...
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My Review of Steninge Slott’s Christmas Market

My Review of Steninge Slott’s Christmas Market

Steninge Slott's Julmarknad is always a fun trip out to Sigtuna, Sweden. The Christmas market is housed in the stone barn behind the 17th Century palace and the interior is stunning. The vaulted ceilings of the barn give it an airy atmosphere and illuminated advent stars hang from the ceiling begging to go home with you. Our favorite purchases usually involve buying a paper sack of candied almonds and some warm glögg while we walk around the property among the tree-lined pathways. However, Steninge Slott's rustic charm is undergoing a bit of a renovation and the grounds are currently under construction with new housing development on the property. No longer do you feel like you are on a large estate property but now you feel a bit like you're intruding on people's backyard. Another change from years past is that Steninge Slott now sells furniture and home decorations year round. The inventory for this new business has pushed the crafts and local vendors who participate...
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Visiting the Christmas Markets in Sweden

Visiting the Christmas Markets in Sweden

It is Christmas Market (Julmarknad) season in Europe and Sweden has some of the most darling Christmas markets. Glögg (mulled wine), reindeer meat, and candles on evergreen trees are all part and parcel of a good Swedish Christmas market.Kickstarting the Christmas spirit for me entails switching over to the Christmas carols on our Spotify playlist and piling into the car to our local Christmas markets.My kids love the idea of going for a pony ride, drinking warm chocolate, and possibly participating in a fiskdam (where they "fish" for a present and the fees for "fishing" go back into the local community.)I love finding handmade goods from small businesses and local artists. I absolutely love finding small handmade gifts that are perfect for stockings or adding a little flourish to our bookshelves. If you make a cute little elf or anything featuring a long Santa beard, I will probably buy it.This December, we are heading to a different Christmas market every weekend...
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