fredag den 31. december 2021

Godt Nytår -- Happy New Year

Feliz año nuevo -- 明けましておめでとう
Frohes neues Jahr -- Gleðilegt nýtt ár
Szczęśliwego nowego roku



2022 er tigerens år -- 2022 is the year of the tiger



Nok engang har jeg forlystet mig med Jennifer Fulwilers helgengenerator. I år er årets helgener:

As most years I choose a saint, or rather two via the Saints' Names Generator made by Jennifer Fulwiler. My saints of the years are:


Den gode Jennifer har også lavet en årets ord-generator. Den måtte jeg prøve.

Jennifer has also made a word of the year generator. I just had to try it.

2021 i billeder

 Januar bød på sne og sol

In January we had snow and sunshine

I februar var det minus 12 grader, og vi kunne kælke på det lokale gadekær.

In February it was cold, minus 12 degrees, and we went playing on the local pond.

Marts bragte foråret med sig. Vi blev sluppet ud og holdt nogle længe ventede fødselsdage.

In March spring came with a vengeance, we were let out of isolation and had some long overdue celebrations.


I april vendt blæst og vinter tilbage - som næsten hvert år, men de forsvandt igen, og så havde vi fornemt besøg.

April saw a return of snowy, windy winter weather -- as almost every year, but winter disappeared as usual, and we had royal visitors.


Maj viste sig fra sin allermest charmerende side. Vi fejrede Piratens firmelse, bøgetræserne sprang ud og det stædige træ i Hillerød sprang ud endnu en gang:

May was a charming month; the beech buds were bursting, we celebrated the confirmation of the Pirate, and the defiant tree was in leaf once again.

I juni fik vi et nyt, hvidt hegn om den nye frøø. Og vi fejrede ikke min fødselsdag pga. I-ved-nok-hvad.

In June we had a new frog pond with a new white fence. And because of you-know-what we did not celebrate my birthday.


I juli rejste vi lang væk - i hvert fald i tankerne.

In Juli we traveled far -- in our minds.


I august fejrede vi Jomfru Maria med indvielsen af en ny statue.

In August we celebrated Mary and had a new statue near our church.



September var en travl måned med skolegang, plantefarvning og syltetøj.

September was busy with plant dyeing, jam making and school.


I oktober fik vi så endelig fejret min fødselsdag, Den lille Løves førstekommunion og en del fødselsdage.

In October we finally celebrated my birthday, the first holy communion of the little Lion and some other things lacking.


November brugte jeg mest på at tegne. Inktober var blevet til Simple Daily Drawing - et koncept, jeg meget bedre kunne lide.

November wqas spent mostly drawing - I discovered Simple Daily Drawing- a very cool community.


December bragte sne igen, og Haveuglen fik den første sne på næbbet nogensinde.

December once again brought snow, and GardenOwl saw the first snowfall ever.

onsdag den 29. december 2021

Words for Wednesday -- December 29 -- Updated

  Oops, I am sorry, I inadvertently pressed Enter when the guests arrived yesterday ;)
  Now typos are corrected, prompts and labels added, and so on.

Please! all reading this go to Elephant's Child's place to find the prompts, read some good stories, and be inspired to write your own.
  This is a challenge, where the old saying "The more the merrier" holds true, therefore: Please, remember to go back, read other peoples' stories there or follow their links back. And please leave a comment after reading. Challenges like this one thrives on interaction.


 For the last time this year, Elephnt's Child is serving the prompts. Six words and a photo. I continued the story of Susan and Knud going to Iceland. It's still a bit 'drafty' and as is my wont just stops where I ran out of steam, but as there's more story inside my head -- and I still have not used the photo, I promise to continue given half a chance in the coming days.

Beautiful
Elusive
Endurance
Deep
Determination
Extraordinary


Some days later Rósa, Finnbogi, Susan ans Knud met at a parking place near a lookout over the lava fields in the middle of nowhere. It was a beautiful day and Susan and Knud had enjoyed the ride there. After parking the car, they decided on stretching their legs as they were a bit early. An elusive smell hung in the air, not quite sulphur, not quite ozone, but a chemical, not unpleasant smell. New to their noses.
Rósa and Finnbogi arrived in Rosa's car, at least she was the driver. Susan and Knud got into the car. They drove on in silence, deep into the lava fields, that looked like solidified black rivers. After a while Rósa stopped the car and bade them get out. The silence was total, and the air was thin.
"Susan," Finnbogi said, speaking in a voice not much more than a whisper."Could you please use the person-detecting spell? I want to be absolutely sure we're not followed, and the teleportation spells later on will tax my magic endurance to its limits."
Susan nodded and drew her wand. "Nobody, not a living thing is near us," she said in a subdued voice. "It is as if we were all alone in the world."
"That's good!" Finnbogi said "I looked at the people on the museum and I did not like what I saw. Some of them are a bit aware of their magic, and two of them had a distinct evil tinge."
"I have a suspicion," Susan said, now a bit louder. "I have no reason to doubt that you well remember Tristan and his plans." Rósa and Finnbogi nodded. "We have found that he was not the mastermind behind the magical takeover, his sister was. And she was not at the ill-fated party, and she died some years later, and she had a child, a daughter. We, or at least I suspect that she was the one stealing the wand and what else was stolen. I think she had help - maybe from your colleagues."
"But why?" Rósa asked.
"Revenge," Susan said. Torben's sister worked with great determination on the subversion of the society. She wanted the magic segment to rule. When we stopped Torben and Tristan from taking over Denmark - and drove them to semi-madness, I'm afraid to admit, she saw it all. She knew who was behind it all. She was determined to ruin our lives, but she died from some disease, but not before giving her lust for power and revenge to her daughter."
"Why did Eileen not just use her mother's wand?" Finnbogi asked.
Susan and Knud looked at him, "Yes why not?"
Rósa spoke: "I know. Thora told me, us?" She looked questioningly at Susan "that wands are personal. You can use another person's wand, as you did at my office, Susan, for simple spells or for a short time. Longer use will kind of wear out the wand, make it unreliable, accident prone. She probably was in need of a new one."
"Accident prone!" Susan said, her voice shrill with fear. "That lady on the plane, she was extraordinarily unlucky.
She could be Terese's daughter returning for yet another wand, and maybe to find you two!"

"She spoke Norwegian." Knud said, and at that time I had a feeling I had heard the voice earlier. Now I know .. Hilde's youngest son's wife. That's her!"

tirsdag den 28. december 2021

Words for Wednesday December 22 -- Third part

  This Wednesday I wrote: "This week's prompts are two times six words. I continued the story of Susan and Knud going to Iceland. It's a bit 'drafty' and as is my wont just stops where I ran out of steam, but as there's more story inside my head -- and more words, I used them in the order they were given -- I promise to continue given half a chance in the coming days."
  Now having used the last four words:
Secret, Thing, Author, and Recess I have to wait for more words before I can continue

"So as not to cause any misunderstandings I'm going to continue in Icelandic," Susan began when they were seated.

"Firstly, I'm Susan, and this is Knud. We know one another from Summer school long time ago. For many years we lived with the supposition that it was a 4H school, teaching us the care of bunnies and grooming of horses. Rósa said you have vague recollections as to what you really were taught there. No wonder you have, Unicorn Farm, as the place was called ..."

Finnbogi called out: "I knew it, there's magic in it somewhere!"

"Yes indeed there is," Susan said, "and much more than you suspect. Unicorn Farm was a school of magic."

"Susan," Knud said, "stop beating around the bush. Show them!"

"All right I will," Susan said. "I'm a bit nervous. I don't know how you'll react to this ... Oh darn it. Truth is the best way out!" Susan said, took a wand from the table and swished it through the air. Sparks stood in all directions and lit some of the papers on the table. "Slökkvið" Susan said, pointing the wand and the flames died.

"How did you do that?" Rósa asked, nonplussed. "That is the real stuff!"

"Yes, indeed it is, and you were much better at it than me, Icelandic being your mother tongue and your family being witches and wizards way back!" Susan opened the small brown suitcase she had been carrying around all day.

"I want to test our new spell thread on you two if you dare," she said pulling out a brand new pair of pants and a skirt. They were subtly different from what they had had at the Unicorn Farm, colours and make were not totally the same, but still very close.

"That shirt ..." Rósa said in an awed voice. "It looks like the one from my dreams. Can I have it?"

"That was the idea," Susan said, extending the skirt toward Rósa, "and it should re-awaken your magic, if we did it right. Time to test, I think. Please touch it!"

Rósa did and as her eyes lit up, Susan smiled broadly, then laughed. She and Knud high-fived and laughed: "It worked!"

"Your turn, Finnbogi," Knud said, giving him the pants. And as Finnbogi took them he too smiled broadly.

The four magicians sat quietly for a short while, getting used to the strangeness of young friends having become old, basking in the knowledge of magic and the wonder of the moment. Then Knud spoke: "But how come you remembered, half-remembered, dreamt about the magic. That spell the last day made all us apprentices forget. It was only last spring that Susan found her old skirt and had her memory jolted back. And none of the other, we have found had any idea of magic. Only a general unease, maladjustment or a sense of not fitting in. Do you have any ideas?"

"Maybe," Rósa began.

"I think," Finnbogi said

You first, Finnbogi!" Rósa said quickly.

"First of all," he said, we've been handling things of magic here in the museum, on an almost daily basis ..."

"No," Rósa interrupted him. "My dreams goes further back. Before I even heard of the museum. I think it's the Easter fires."

"The Easter fires!" Knud said. "Do you still jump through them?"

"Yes we do!" Rósa said, "compared to the fires on the Unicorn Farm, those fires are a lame show, but I still think they cured us at least partially."

"That was exactly what I was going to say," Finnbogi continued unperturbed. Susan remembered him as a calm, reliable person, a stout supporter and a fairly fast thinker. The years did not seem to have changed him much. "Easter fires, and then of course living in Iceland, speaking the old language, it all helped, I think."

"To make a long story shorter, Susan said. "We need you at the Unicorn Farm. No," she corrected herself, "it's not the Unicorn Farm any longer. Our new place is called Birch Manor. But still we need every one of the old apprentices we can find, for teaching and doing things. We need you, Rósa as a wandsinger and as an accomplished animalist. You could take over Thora's old position? And you Finnbogi for the Easter fires, as you're the oldest male still alive, and also for help with the portals, and so much more. We've found Martine, Fiona, My, Heidi, Tage and Lis, and Sandra, their Mum."

"And Helge, Anna, Olav, Hilde, Monica and Jan," Knud continued. "and that's it, I think."

"We know that Aamu and Sarah are alive as well," Susan added, "but we have not yet found Aamu. Sarah is indisposed. But as most of us have had children and grandchildren, there's no lack of apprentices!"

"You're missing at least one," Rósa said. "My cousin Kirstin, she's also still alive, and she's living near here."

"Kirstin!" Susan said with a sad smile. "I remember her so well, as dark as you are blond and always positive, almost happy. But ... I mean ... we read in the papers that she died while swimming after her graduation ceremony."

"Well, no, she did not," Rósa said. "It's a misunderstanding. She graduated, she did go swimming with more of her co-graduates, there was an accident, but it was another Kirstin who drowned. My cousin was in hospital for a long time, and she ... but you can help her? Can't you?"

"Fiona can, I think, and Marit." Knud said. "Fiona worked wonders for Martine. But what's wrong with Kirstin?"

"As I said, she almost drowned. She hurt her neck and her brain was damaged. She is not a moron, but not as you knew her. Reduced would be the rigth word I think."

Finnbogi nodded.

"We've better start the setting up of a portal somewhere near," Knud said. "I would not dare give Kirstin her magic back without consulting with Fiona and Marit first, and preferably Martine and Sandra as well. They are our counsellors and old, wise persons. Ella - you remember Ella from Germany?"

"The girl without magic, she with the granny?"

"Yes her, she's in it too, she knows the magic society in Germany, even if it's small and partly esoteric, they exist!"

"A portal," Finnbogi sounded almost happy. "I think the old ones inside the mountain were never ruined."

"The old secret ones?" Susan asked. "Those where the cells are - those ghastly one-way traps?"

"How do ou know about those?" Finnbogi exclaimed. "I thought I was the only one. Gilvi showed them to me, Sif and Elvin one day in the week leading up to that ill-fated summer party."

"He knew." Susan said surreptitiously wiping away a tear: "That week was a busy, emotional week. We all learned lessons way beyond what we could do. He knew what was going to happen, not only at the party, but in the future. Now. As did Thora and the Kuusisaari twins. But how I know about the portals is not my story to tell. Me and another apprentice ended up there one day in the autumn before. Can they still be used and can you take us there?"

"Yes and yes," Finnbogi said simply. "But you'll have to trust me. I can - I think - teleport us there. and from there we can go anywhere portals still exist. Those are major portals, enabling you to go to any portal, not like the simple ones leading to Unicorn Farm and back. Where do you have portals still?
"Elsinore, my old one. Bergen, Tromsø, and of course Birch Manor have new ones. The simple variety. I did not know of major portals at all. Tage and Lis sat up the three portals with help from us all."

"Me and Aamu and Jouka, we were taught how to make portals major in that week," Finnbogi said. "The purple team only learned how to make simple ones."

"Ah! that explains a lot," Knud said.

"We have to meet as soon as possible, all of us!" Rósa said.

"We could go to Denmark," Finnbogi said. "Now is the low season, only American tourists are here, mostly for the thrill of the necropants. Jon and Frey can handle that alone. We have to go to Denmark to study something that you two - amateur magic sleuths told us of?"

"I'm a retired historian," Knud said, "I did some dabbling in witch processes in my time. Can you come and help me with that?"

"Nice one!" Finnbogi smiled.

"Take care," Rósa suddenly said, "the one who stole the wand and those other things are still at large. We do not know who or why."

"True!" Susan and Knud said as one.

Finnbogi rose  "Jon and Frey are done with their daily chores now. I'll tell them of our plans."

Susan swished the wand and cancelled the Mál Sameinast spell: "No way our speaking perfect Icelandic will help further our plan!" Susan smiled.

Shortly Finnbogi returned with two youngish, very Icelandic looking people, almost too much so. Home knit sweaters, Jon with a wild beard and Frey with two long buttery yellow braids. Behind their back Finnbogi gave the sign for caution.

Susan and Knud rose, shook hands with them and Knud told shortly of his worklife.

"Ahh, Jon said, "You're the author of that book on Danish absolutist kings?"

"Yes," Knud said. "Pleased to meet you."

The matter was soon settled, Finnbogi an Rósa were given two weeks recess to go to Denmark and see if there was anything of interest in Knud's notes.

mandag den 27. december 2021

Poetry Monday :: Fruitcake

If you want to read some better  poetry,  Diane - who has taken over the hosting of  this challenge - and Mimi of Messymimi's Meanderings - who also supplies us with topics - are writing wonderful, funny, thought-provoking, ingenious and honestly well written verse. Go and read.

  Karen of Baking in a Tornado has joined us in this crazy pursuit, and promises us at least a poem a month - may  we hope for more!
  SpikesBestMate often publishes a nice verse in the comments.

  Jenny at Procrastinating Donkey who has been a faithful participant, is slowly returning to blogging after her husband's passing from this world. Let's continue to send warm thoughts, good energy, and lots of prayers her way. And dare we hope that she will join Poetry Monday again.


Fruitcake for me is Stollen. Ever since long  ago we loved German cakes, and the year in Salzgitter did nothing to diminish that love.


Give me pudding, give me Yule log
Gingerbread or cookies small,
They're tasty but I dare say
Christmas Stollen beats them all

Give me mint pies, Pfeffernüsse,
Fattigmenn and all the rest
I do like them, but believe me:
Stollen is the very best

In December I go shopping
People look at me and frown
For my cart is filled with Stollen
We do like them, white and brown!

A typical Stollen with almond paste filling - our favourite.  But .. to be honest, we like Printen even better!

Next Monday the topic will be Sleep!

søndag den 26. december 2021

Words for Wednesday December 22 -- Second part

Please! all reading this go to Elephant's Child's place to find the prompts, read some good stories, and be inspired to write your own.
  This is a challenge, where the old saying "The more the merrier" holds true, therefore: Please, remember to go back, read other peoples' stories there or follow their links back. And please leave a comment after reading. Challenges like this one thrives on interaction.

  This Wednesday I wrote: "This week's prompts are two times six words. I continued the story of Susan and Knud going to Iceland. It's a bit 'drafty' and as is my wont just stops where I ran out of steam, but as there's more story inside my head -- and more words, I used them in the order they were given -- I promise to continue given half a chance in the coming days."
  Now having used three more words:
Dreams, Meet, and Spider, I still promise the same: 

   Bird
    Lifetime
    Impossible
    Days
    Dreams
    Meet
And/or
    Spider
    Thread
    Secret
    Thing
    Author
    Recesses

I repeat the last paragraph from this Wednesday:

Upstairs were no wands or grimoires, it was dedicated to the stories of persecutions and genealogy of Icelandic witches and wizards. They were encouraged to try and trace their own families back, if they had any Icelandic forebears. Only the old professor wanted a go and Rósa showed him how it worked by tracing her own family tree back to a wizard burned at the stake in the 1670es.
  Both Susan and Knud noticed with satisfaction that Rósa's father was Sigurd Yngvasson, which they knew to be the name and patronymic of "their" Rósa's father.

After the other visitors were left to their own device either looking through the genealogic files, having a coffee or even a three course dinner in the restaurant, Rósa bade Knud and Susan accompany her to her office for a cup of tea and a talk. "I have a couple of other wands, both old and replicas in my office, no need to remove the exhibits from their showcases," Rósa said.
  Of course Susan was easily able to pick out the old wands from the samples in Rósas office, with one exception.

"No? That one is actually an old wand. We found it in ... Let me see, yes Kaldrananeskirkja. Impressive name for a small hamlet, " Rósa said smiling over the rim of her teacup.

"Very much so," Susan answered. "And don't expect me to repeat that. I remember the trouble I had with Eyafjallajökull."

"That was one of the finest samples of Icelandic pronunciation I ever heard form a Dane, your teachers can be proud of you. How long have you been studying?"

"I began as a very young girl, 13 or thereabout, but then I did not do anything about it for over 40 years, I just recently picked it up again, I was not a very good student, when I was young, Gilvi and Thora almost gave up on me," Susan admitted. "But I love languages, and Icelandic has always had a big place in my heart."

"Gilvi and Thora, you say. I think I knew them, or maybe it's from one of my dreams, or it might be another couple, Neither name are uncommon here," Rósa said, looking through the window, far out over the sea.

"Your dreams? Susan said, genuine wonder colouring her voice

"My dreams," Rósa said hesitantly, still watching the sea. "They have become more and more vivid, since I began working at this museum. They have to do with magic. In my dreams I go to school, I meet other magicians, I fly a broomstick, I do magic ... but it's a dream, just a dream. Only they are so vivid. Sometimes I wake up wishing it was true."

"But it is," Susan said quietly. "what I said about woodturning was ... well, not exactly a lie, but not the whole truth. I can see, in some of the new wands, the traces of newer woodturning techniques, but only vaguely, I cannot tell with any certainty if they are old or new. But I can feel the magic in some of those wands. Magic really do exist. Not the superstitious kind, making that girl love you, or neighbour's cream not turn into butter variety, but real, honest to God, magic."

  Susan stopped and looked at Rósa, who sat still as a mouse, gazing out over the ocean. Susan continued: "I know it's hard to believe. There's so much phony, so much wannabe magic around. Like the wand from Kaldrananeskirkja. Someone made the susceptible inhabitants of that hamlet believe that he or she could do magic, and as magic - the phony kind is as much in the mind of the receiving part as in the practitioner he might have succeeded. For instance those sigils, staves, you call them, here in the museum, are not true magic. They are some kind of sympathetic magic, more like a weak potion than anything else. But still they work ... You know, like ... like that unsecure boy, loving miss Right at a distance, not believing that she even notices him. Then Mr. Shy goes to the local wise one, gets a love-stave, carries it to the next ball, and then, when Miss Right looks at him, which she will eventually do, if she's not totally uninterested, then Mr. Shy believes that the stave is working, self confidence growing - maybe aided by a drop of liquid courage - he goes over and asks her for a dance, still believing tin the 'magic' and then, well nature will do the rest."

Rósa slowly nodded, and Susan carried on: "Or let's take Mrs. Lazy not being able to make butter. Given a stave, and hiding it under the churn, she'll churn on energetically, on the lookout for glimpses of butter - which of course she will eventually see, as anybody who ever tried whipping cream and inadvertently making butter can attest will happen. Then she will happily churn on, seeing the results. Staves are means to overcome people's innate inhibitions or faults, they are not real magic."

Rósa turned to Susan: "Then what is?" she asked, her voice low and strained.

Susan looked at the wand in her hand, then back at Rósa and continued: "Flying broomsticks, brewing potions, calling animals, healing the sick ... Do you remember the 4H courses you participated in as a child?"

"What a strange question, but yes I do. I even sometimes talk about them with Finnbogi, we were there together. We have happy, yet strangely vague memories of those summers. We sometimes remember tiny details in great clarity. We both remember a spider, we found in a stable one summer, but we cannot remember what we were taught."

"Is Finnbogi at work today?" Knud asked. He had been sitting quietly next to Susan, and Rósa had almost forgotten that he was there.

"Yes, Knud, he is," Rósa answered.

"You know my name?" Knud said with a gentle smile. "I did not tell you."

Rósa looked at him in astonishment: "But you are Knud, aren't you? Knud from that 4H-summer school. I remember you. And Susan ... It's all in my memories and my dreams, all woven together, just like those old, magic knots woven from multicoloured strands of thread."

"Do you think you could make Finnbogi join us?" Knud asked. "We owe you an explanation, and it's easier telling the tale only once."

"I'll make him come at once," Rósa said and picked up the phone. She spoke in rapid Icelandic, and while she did so, Susan swung the old wand, she had been holding and cast the Mál Sameinast spell.

Finnbogi arrived, bringing his tea mug and sat down at the table.

"So as not to cause any misunderstandings I'm going to continue in Icelandic," Susan began when they were seated.
... to be continued

Christmas Sunday

Endelig blev den kaleidoskopiske kugle færdig. Den hang et par dage i vores adventsvindue.

Finally the kaleidoscopic bauble was finished. It hung for a while in the advent window.


Men så blev det jul, og den måtte vige pladsen for Jomfruen med Barnet.

But then it was Christmas, and the space was taken over by the Virgin with her Child.


Juletræet var fantastisk flot i år. Det siger vi vist hvert år, men i år er det sandt.

The Christmas tree was lovely - as every year


Solnedgangen juledag var også enestående - hvis man klikker på billedet, så det bliver større, kan man se aftenstjernen over dte beskårne træ.

The sunset Christmas day was fabulous. If you click to embiggen, you can see the evening star.


Det frøs hele natten, og næste morgen groede der disse herlige isblomster

All nigth it was sub-zero temperatures, and in the morning we discovered these beauties.


Glædelig jul alle sammen

Merry Christmas You all

fredag den 24. december 2021

...

Glædelig Jul
-- Merry Christmas --
Frohe Weihnachten
-- Feliz Navidad --
Hyvää Joulua
-- Wesołych Świąt --
 

onsdag den 22. december 2021

Words for Wednesday -- december 22

Please! all reading this go to Elephant's Child's place to find the prompts, read some good stories, and be inspired to write your own.
  This is a challenge, where the old saying "The more the merrier" holds true, therefore: Please, remember to go back, read other peoples' stories there or follow their links back. And please leave a comment after reading. Challenges like this one thrives on interaction.

 This week's prompts are two times six words. I continued the story of Susan and Knud going to Iceland. It's a bit 'drafty' and as is my wont just stops where I ran out of steam, but as there's more story inside my head -- and more words, I used them in the order they were given -- I promise to continue given half a chance in the coming days.

   Bird
    Lifetime
    Impossible
    Days
    Dreams
    Meet

And/or

    Spider
    Thread
    Secret
    Thing
    Author
    Recesses

The plane fell and rose, but the oscillations grew steadily smaller. As they stopped, the comm system spluttered and the the captain’s voice could be heard. “Sorry for the rough ride,” he said, “we had a bird sucked into one of the engines. Luckily it was a small bird, so you, and I, will live to tell our grandchildren of this once in a lifetime accident.”  

“This is impossible,” a lady in one of the first rows said ion Norwegian. “On my way to Copenhagen the very same thing happened! Did he not say once in a lifetime? For me it’s the third such incident within seven days!”

“Let’s hope it’s trouble comes in threes,” the stewardess said and the lady murmured assent.

 (missing a part not yet written, where Susan and Knud spends two weeks travelling along the coast, brushing up their language skills and spells, getting used to Icelandic ways and car driving, visiting distant family and finally arrives at the museum)

Once there they accepted a guided tour, and volunteered to wait an hour for the next one which then would be held by a Rósa in Danish, as the first one was filled by a bus-load of American tourists. Knud and Susan looked at one another and nodded. “We can have a cup of tea in the restaurant or the garden while we’re waiting,” Susan said. They had been warned from Icelandic coffee, had tried it once, and decided to stay away for the time being.

They had the guiding almost to themselves, as the Danish summer holidays had not began yet. There were a Norwegian couple, three young girls also from Norway and an old, Danish man, a former professor from somewhere in Jutland.It was a strange, yet really interesting museum. Most of the exhibits were phony, either just superstition, or copies of copies of something that might have worked once upon a time. The old professor was very interested in the necropants, which Susan found disgusting and Knud morbid, they did not feel the slightest spark of magic in those. But some of the old grimoires and some of the wands were another kind altogether, Susan asked for, and surprisingly got permission to take out of their display case wands that should have belonged to witches and wizards from the 17 century onwards.
“You do know that this one is a modern replica?” Susan said, as she gingerly replaced the last one on it on the hooks holding it.
“Yes we do, the original wand was stolen together with a few other object some time ago. But how do you know?”

“Oh" Susan said, "I am an amateur wood turner, and I can see the traces of modern wood turning implements. I could not be certain looking at it through the glass, but close up I was sure.”

“Impressing,” the lady said. “We thought it was a perfect replica, Could you show me what gave it away, probably after the tour has ended?”

“I’d be happy to,” Susan replied.

Upstairs were no wands or grimoires, it was dedicated to the stories of persecutions and genealogy of Icelandic witches and wizards. They were encouraged to find their own families, if they had any Icelandic roots, only the old professor wanted a go and Rósa showed them how it worked by tracing her own family tree back to a wizard burned at the stake in the 1670es.

... to be continued

tirsdag den 21. december 2021

I dag -- Today

I dag er det årets korteste dag ... eller den længste nat om man vil. Solen står op klokken 8.41 og går ned igen 15.37. Dermed er dagen hele 6 timer og 56 minutter lang og vi har mistet 10 timer og 43 minutter siden vi havde den længste dag.
I dag er Ugleungerne til virtuel juleafslutning.
I dag bliver det måske snevejr.

-- 📆 --

Today is the shortest day .. or the longest night if you prefer it that way. The sun raises at 8:41 and sets again at 3:51 pm. We have all of 6 hours and 56 minutes of - mostly murky - daylight. At midsummer we had 19 and 3/4 hours more daylight. It is a bit scary.
Today the Owlets have their last - digital - school day before Christmas holidays begin.
Today we might have snow.



I dag er jeg nået så langt med kaleidoskop-kuglen
--
Today I made it this far with the kaleidoscopic bauble
Næsten færdig -- Almost there

mandag den 20. december 2021

Poetry Monday :: Music :: Dies est lætitiæ

If you want to read some better  poetry,  Diane - who has taken over the hosting of  this challenge - and Mimi of Messymimi's Meanderings - who also supplies us with topics - are writing wonderful, funny, thought-provoking, ingenious and honestly well written verse. Go and read.

  Karen of Baking in a Tornado has joined us in this crazy pursuit, and promises us at least a poem a month - may  we hope for more!
  SpikesBestMate often publishes a nice verse in the comments.

  Jenny at Procrastinating Donkey who has been a faithful participant, is slowly returning to blogging after her husband's passing from this world. Let's continue to send warm thoughts, good energy, and lots of prayers her way. And dare we hope that she will join Poetry Monday again.


English further down!
-- 🕯 --

Den sidste, sære bid af titlen på dette indlæg er er latin, og betyder Det er en glædens dag. Det er titlen på en julehymne som Grundtvig brugte (sammen med Heu, quid jaces stabulo, tror jeg) som forlæg for Glæden hun er født i dag. En ikke særligt kendt julesalme, der handler om det vidunderlige bytte - at Gud blev menneske, for at vi kunne blive som Ham igen. Her er de to første vers:

Glæden hun er født i dag,
Himmeriges glæde,
ved Gud Faders velbehag
fryde sig de spæde!
Han, som var frygtelig
og utilgængelig
i sin høje bolig,
han nu i barnedragt
har sig i krybben lagt,
med vort støv fortrolig.
      
Født er han ved midnatstid,
skabte sol og måne,
han, som ejer verden vid,
hus i stald vil låne;
han, som på skyerne
ager blandt stjernerne,
svøbes som de spæde!
Ham, som på dommedag
taler med tordenbrag,
nu man hører græde!

-- 🕯 --

The last, strange bit of today's title is Latin, and means It is the Day of Joy. It is the title of a Christmas hymn which Grundtvig used (along with Heu, quid jaces stabulo, I think) as the model for The Joy She Is Born Today. A fairly unknown Danish Christmas hymn about the wonderful exchange - that God became man so that we could become like Him again.
  You can sing this version to the tune, of the English equivalent: Dost Thou in a manger lie, but it does not rhyme.

This is the day, rejoice
with the joy of Heaven.
In the delight of God
Every one is singing.
He who was terrible
And unapproachable
In the highest dwelling,
now as a human child
humble in manger lie 
With our dust familiar.

He was born at midnight-time,
who Sun and moon created.
He who calls the word his seat,
stable room is renting.
He who on clouds above
ambles among the stars,
swaddled by a human!
He who on the judgment day
speaks from the clouds up high,
crying in an manger!

- - - - - - -

Coming up:

Fruitcake (December 27)
Sleep (January 3)
Peculiar People (January 10)
Ditch Your New Year's Resolutions
(January 17)
Opposite Day (January 24)
Typo Day (January 31) Celebrate those funny (autocorrect) mistakes.

søndag den 19. december 2021

Words for Wednesday, December 15 -- Using the Words

Please! all reading this go to Elephant's Child's place to find the prompts, read some good stories, and be inspired to write your own.
  This is a challenge, where the old saying "The more the merrier" holds true, therefore: Please, remember to go back, read other peoples' stories there or follow their links back. And please leave a comment after reading. Challenges like this one thrives on interaction.

 This week's prompts are a selection of phrases relating to love and/or relationships.and I could do plain nothing with them, but I had a lot of leftover words from Wednesday, December 1, where I used only say and standing:

   Thread   
    Butterflies
    Unsuitable
    Sea
    Shattered 
And/or
    Press
    Eyelids
    Spaghetti
    Cardboard
    Dumped

Now we're later in time on Susan's timeline than ever before. We're leaving Birch Manor for yet a trip after old apprentices:

Susan and Knud were waiting in the lounge at Copenhagen airport. Susan sat on the edge of the chair. “Relax!” Knud said gently, “we’ll board the plane in ten minutes or so.”
“I know,” Susan said, drawing a big shuddering breath, “But what with the spell thread, the books, and wands and magic paraphernalia in general, passing the customs gave me a major attack of butterflies in the stomach.”
“We got trough with no trouble,” Knud said grinning.
“And don’t tell me you had nothing to do with it,” Susan said more calm now. “It’s not totally unsuitable to use the ‘There’s nothing here-suggestions’ on unsuspecting customs officers. I’m more surprised that it worked. I always used to have everything checked when travelling in days of old.”
“Are you nervous?” Knud asked. “Most of our flight will be smooth, as we’re flying over the sea. No mountains or even high ground until we arrive.”
"No," Susan said. “I’m not really nervous; apprehensive describes it better. I do not like flying, and I do not like going north. You know my preferred holiday would be a slow, easy train travel to Italy in the summer time. But you can’t have everything. If we’re going to save the shattered remains and rebuild the school, we have to travel to Iceland and visit that museum for old Icelandic magic - even if it sounds like the phoniest thing north of Equator.”
“You nailed it, Susan, and I agree on all counts,” Knud said.

5 minutes later they boarded the plane, in the press to get aboard they got separated, but as the plane was not that full after all Susan quickly found Knud's lanky form over the seat rows. One of the assets of having a tall husband, Susan thought to herself, it’s quite hard to get lost. Knud felt her eyes on him, turned and waved at her, he had found their row.

The flight was totally uneventful, Susan dozed while Knud read a book, later he nodded off and Susan pulled out her sketch pad and drew Iceland as she imagined it would be looking, perfect with a smoking volcano in the background. Knud woke up and rubbed his eyelid. “Did you draw a plate of spaghetti?” he asked in a teasing tone.
“It’s lava, stupid,” she grinned, doffing his shoulder with mock blows. “I have no idea how it will be looking, this is my guess.”

Suddenly the plane lurched, the Fasten Seatbelts sign lit and the cardboard box containing Susan’s colours fell over and dumped its contents in her lap.

lørdag den 18. december 2021

En slags lykkelig slutning -- A Happy Ending; Kind of

Engang var der et kirsebærtræ i Helsinge. Uglemor nød det hvert forår, dette kirsebærtræ stod nemlig lige ved stoppestedet, når hun skulle hjem og glædede hende med sit oversdådige blomsterflor. Det blomstrede altid tidligt, først i april, også i kolde år.

 🌸

For many years MotherOwl loved this cherry tree. It was situated next to the bus stop where MotherOwl waited for the bus home when shopping. It was always the first sakura to blossom, sometimes as early as the 1st of April.
2014

2016
     Senere på året 2016 blev det desværre blevet slemt beskåret. Det stod i vejen for et stillads og alle grenene blev savet af. Uglemor var trist.
     Men næste år blomstrede det alligevel!

🌸

Some months after this picture the tree was cut down. Repairs at the roof called for scaffolding, and the tree had to part with its branches. Very sad.
   But next year it was defiantly flowering again.
2017

Næste år så det endnu bedre ud.  --  Next year it looked even better
April 2018


Men det endte trist med træet.

- 🌸💧 -

But the tree came to a sad ending.

Juli 2018

     Senere samme år var Uglemor til en udstilling i vores væverforening. Navnet snyder, der bliver ikke kun vævet, der bliver også strikket, hæklet, flettet med pil, filtet, drejet i træ, kniplet og en masse andre ting. Uglemor faldt i snak med en af de dygtige trædrejere. Samtalen kom ind på kirsebærtræ, der er meget smukt, men ikke helt nemt at dreje i, og Uglemor fortalte om det smukke træ, der var blevet fældet for nyligt. Uglemor beklagede at hun ikke havde fået taget sig sammen til enten at spørge om eller bare at stjæle et stykke af stammen, der forsvandt meget hurtigt - den er faktisk allerede væk på billedet her.
     Trædrejeren spurgte så Uglemor om hun vidste, hvor stammen var blevet af. Det gjorde hun naturligvis ikke. Men det gjorde han! Den lå såmænd hjemme i hans udhus og lagrede!
     Uglemor sagde så, at hun meget gerne ville have en skål af det træ, og så glemte vi alt om det.  

🌸

  Later that year MotherOwl was at a meeting in our Weawers' guild - it's not only weawers meeting there, we knit, sew, felt, crochet, plant dye, make willow basket turn wood, and much more. She spoke with one of the really good wood turning people, and the conversation fell on cherry wood, which is very beautiful, and not too easy to work with. MotherOwl lamented her Sakura tree and said that she regrettet not havin stolen or asked for a bit of the trunk to make something from.
   (As you can see from the picture it disappeared very fast)
   The wood turning man asked MotherOwl if she knew where that tree had ended. She did not, but the man did! It was in his outhouse, waiting and curing!
   MotherOwl said that she would very much like a bowl made from this tree, the man said, well yes, of course. And then we forgot all about it.

- 🌸 -

For nyligt holdt vi udstilling igen, og Uglemor kom i tanker om kirsebærtræet. Og nu ...

Recently we had yet another exhibition. MotherOwl suddenly remembered the tree. And now ...
Fin, ny sukkerskål  -- Fine new sugar bowl.

torsdag den 16. december 2021

Theposekaleidoskop -- Teabag Kaleidoscope

     I søndags så vi et lille udsnit af mine mange theposer. For i snart mange år har jeg samlet og foldet theposer. Så længe, at theposerne har skiftet udseende ikke mindre end fire gange. Her er den samme slags the - jordbærthe - i fire forskellige udgaver.
     Den nederst til venstre har jeg ikke ret mange af, for det look holdt ikke længe. Det er også den model, det er sværest at folde noget pænt af, for de grimme (eller i hvert fald kedelige) bogstaver har det med at vende udad. Der skal foldes skævt.

-- ⏍ --

  Last Sunday I showed off a tiny bit of my tea bag stash. For many years already I have been collecting and folding tea bags. For so long actually that the tea bags have changed appearance no less than four times. 
  Here is the same kind of tea - strawberry tea - in four different versions. The one on the bottom left is the least common in my stash (I had 84). The look didn't last long. It's also the model that's hardest to fold anything from, because the ugly (or at least boring) letters tend to turn outwards. It has to be folded at a slant.


     Men man kan stadig lave to forskellige firkanter med de samme led. Her er de to forskellige. Hvordan skal de så vendes?  Forskellen er ikke farverne, men hvordan de grønne blade vender.
     Et familie-rundspørge sagde at den orange firkant var den rigtige.

-- ⏍ --

  But you can still make two different squares with the same four teabags. Here are the two different ones. So how should they look?
  The difference is not the colours, but how the green leaves are positioned. A family poll said the orange square was the right one.

Der skal 18 firkanter til en DaVinci-kugle.

-- ⏍ --

It takes 18 squares to make a DaVinci sphere.


     Alle poserne, nogle af dem har før været brugt til forsøg og opgivne projekter. Men der er lige præcis nok - og 5 i overskud!

-- ⏍ --

 All the bags, some of them have been used before for experimenting or abandoned projects. But there are enough - and 5 to spare!


Så blev kombinationsprocessen og puslespillet færdigt. Nu skal der bare foldes og sys.

-- ⏍ --

 And the decision process and the puzzle was finished. Now I just need some time for folding and sewing.

onsdag den 15. december 2021

Words for Wednesday -- The Words

Please! all reading this go to Elephant's Child's place to find the prompts, read some good stories, and be inspired to write your own.
  This is a challenge, where the old saying "The more the merrier" holds true, therefore: Please, remember to go back, read other peoples' stories there or follow their links back. And please leave a comment after reading. Challenges like this one thrives on interaction.

 This week's prompts are a selection of phrases relating to love and/or relationships. You can use some of them, all of them or add your own:


Out of sight, out of mind
Absence makes the heart grow fonder
Puppy love
Love laughs at locksmiths
Love is blind
A face that only a mother could love


So far I've had lots of ideas. Writing will hopefully happen.

tirsdag den 14. december 2021

Tirsdagstæsk :: Køreplaner

Tuesday Thumping :: Time Tables

   I søndags fik vi nye køreplaner.
    Der er bare et lille men ... De er der ikke endnu:
   Det her er den besked, man får, hvis man vil skrive for eksempel S-togenens køreplaner ud, skærmbillede fra i dag, tirsdag den 14. på DSBs hjemmeside. *
   De siger så, at ændringerne på S-togene er få og små sammenlignet med den gamle køreplan - som de naturligvis har fjernet, da den ikke gælder længere!

* Lokaltogenes og bussernes køreplaner har ligget der en god uges tid eller mere ...  bare til sammenligning.

-- 🚆  🚅 --

  Sunday 12 December we had new time tables. This happens regularly the second Sunday of December. The only thing I do not understand is, that it always comes as a big surprise for those making the time tables for us to use:
  The screenshot tells me - and whomever else goes to the page where the time tables are to be found - that you can have the time tables for ordinary trains in the three parts of Denmark. The metro, S-trains and fast trains / expresses and international trains,... no, they are still being worked on as of today Tuesday 14. I sure hope it's only us not being given the time tables Else I'm afraid chaos will soon follow.
     When asked, they tell that the changes are few and small compared to the old plans - which of course were taken down Sunday, when they weren't the current time tables any more. Sigh.
   Just to put this in perspective, the time tables for all buses and local trains have been accessible on the relevant home pages for almost two weeks in advance.

mandag den 13. december 2021

Poetry Monday :: Ice Cream

If you want to read some better  poetry,  Diane - who has taken over the hosting of  this challenge - and Mimi of Messymimi's Meanderings - who also supplies us with topics - are writing wonderful, funny, thought-provoking, ingenious and honestly well written verse. Go and read.

  Karen of Baking in a Tornado has joined us in this crazy pursuit, and promises us at least a poem a month - may  we hope for more!
  SpikesBestMate often publishes a nice verse in the comments.

  Jenny at Procrastinating Donkey who has been a faithful participant, is slowly returning to blogging after her husband's passing from this world. Let's continue to send warm thoughts, good energy, and lots of prayers her way. And dare we hope that she will join Poetry Monday again.

- - 🍨 - -

Ice Cream? What a topic :) Today is Saint Lucy's day. (Santa Lucia) Today we celebrate with hot saffron buns, hot tea or cocoa, singing and candles. Ice cream is a thing very far from my mind in the deep of winter.

Ice cream is a thing of summer
Ice cream is a thing of fun
We enjoy it at the sea side
When from lapping waves we run.

Strawberry or mint or puffo
- that one tastes like bubble gum.
Oh we like them all and eat them
to the very lastest crumb.

Well, now winter's winds are blowing
Ice creams are but in my mind.
But when summer comes to us, then,
Time for ice cream we will find!

- - - - -

Coming up:

Music (December 20)
Fruitcake (December 27)
Sleep (January 3)
Peculiar People (January 10)
Ditch Your New Year's Resolutions
(January 17)
Opposite Day (January 24)
Typo Day (January 31) Celebrate those funny (autocorrect) mistakes.

søndag den 12. december 2021

Sunday Selection -- Snow and Colours

We had snow:
A bit like Narnia; don't you think?

And those three ice cold beings came visiting - they have already left again.

Inspired by HeyJude at Life in Colour, I found my kaleidoscope.

And a bunch of multicoloured tea bags for folding baubles.

onsdag den 8. december 2021

Words for Wednesday -- December 8

  Please! all reading this go to Elephant's Child's place to find the prompts, read some good stories, and be inspired to write your own.
  This is a challenge, where the old saying "The more the merrier" holds true, therefore: Please, remember to go back, read other peoples' stories there or follow their links back. And please leave a comment after reading. Challenges like this one thrives on interaction.

I continue my rewriting and supplementing of the Tales from the Unicorn Farm. Today I continue from here, and I took up the additionale challenge of using the words in the order, they were given to us by Elephant's Child.
 
Todays Words are:
Pounded
Pearl
Secret
Tense
Challenge
Human

     And/or
Middle
Taken
Button
Rare
Intelligence
Praise

Taavi is Taavi Kuusisaari, the male Finnish twin professor. He's the one not believing in Lis, Heidi, Tage and Susan's observations of David.

Susan looked at the golden, spidery scrawl on the blackboard, then she meticulously pounded the pearl into a fine dust. After a while Taavi went on adding oral instructions: "The secret to the perfect potion is not being tense while brewing it."

Susan guiltily relaxed her shoulders, they were almost up to her ears with tension.
"This is certainly a challenge for you," Taavi continued, and Susan felt he spoke directly to her. "and a part of being human. Now you all find a middle sized spatula and a jar of clean water. Don't speak a word. Then quietly return to your place."

Susan had taken the right size spatula and was filling up her jar at the water stoup, when she noticed the button on the floor. She bent to pick it up. It was a rare button, made from mother of pearl with an iridescent blue hue. She had seen buttons like this before, but where?

"Now you add the water a few drops at a time," Taavi ordered. "No, Kalle! A few drops I said, not a whole glug of water." He swished his wand and drained the water off of Kalle's bowl. "This time I'll help you out, but next time, you have to start all over." Kalle thanked the professor and carefully added only a few drops of water to the shimmering dust in the bowl. Anna almost tipped over her bowl, and Susan inadvertently stirred the wrong way around. The green team was not too keen on potions, and today Taavi was in a bad mood, and everything went wrong.

Taavi breathed deeply and bade them pause for a minute. "Thoughtfulness, diligence and intelligence," he said loudly, "is what's needed for potion brewing, and what some of you sorely lack. Or may I mend my words. You do not lack said attributes, none of you do. But you do not use that what you have in your heads.  Please now all of you back up two steps and do some limbering exercises."
All apprentices followed his lead, stretching and swaying like reeds. After the short break everything went smoother, not without minor mishaps and glitches, but distinctly better.

At the end of the lesson, Taavi checked the contents of their bowls. "You all deserve praise," he said. "despite adversity and scorn, you continued to the end. Now down your potion, since what you brewed is a tonick, for better health and steadier hands. You'll need this in the afternoon, when you'll all be given the first in a row of tests on teleportations."


tirsdag den 7. december 2021

Tirsdagstips: Fuglekugler - Bird Feeding

     Fuglekugler med net er bare nemmere for fuglene - de "rigtige" fugle altså: mejser, musvitter og sådan - at spise af. De hænger i nettet og hakker løs. Men nettet er et problem, vel at mærke, hvis det får lov til at flyve væk og lægge sig sære steder i haven. Det sker ikke her!

-- 🟢 --

     Netted fat balls are just easier for the birds - the "good" birds: blue tit and friends - to eat. They cling to the net and peck away. But the nets can be a problem, if they're allowed to fly away and settle in odd corners of the garden, that is. Won't happen here!

Et stykke rød og hvid pakkesnor bindes til en løkke, der trækkes igennem hullerne i nettet. Så har man noget at hænge den op i og den blæser IKKE væk.

-- 🟢 --

A piece of red and white string is tied into a loop and pulled through the holes of the net. It serves a dual purpose. Something to hang it from, and an insurance it does NOT blow away

Her hænger kuglerne på vores valnøddetræ. Dekorativt og sikkert og til gavn for mejsefuglene.

-- 🟢 --

Here the nets are hanging on our walnut tree. Decorative and safe and for the benefit of the tits.

mandag den 6. december 2021

Poetry Monday :: Hanukkah -- Updated

If you want to read some better  poetry,  Diane - who has taken over the hosting of  this challenge - and Mimi of Messymimi's Meanderings - who also supplies us with topics - are writing wonderful, funny, thought-provoking, ingenious and honestly well written verse. Go and read.

  Karen of Baking in a Tornado has joined us in this crazy pursuit, and promises us at least a poem a month - may  we hope for more!
  SpikesBestMate often publishes a nice verse in the comments.

  Jenny at Procrastinating Donkey who has been a faithful participant, is slowly returning to blogging after her husband's passing from this world. Let's continue to send warm thoughts, good energy, and lots of prayers her way. And dare we hope that she will join Poetry Monday again.


-- 🕯 --

  As it's not yet Christmas, I decided to tackle Hanukkah. I knew next to nothing, so reading the relevant articles on Wikipedia and elsewhere was necessary to compose this short poem. I hope I succeeded in showing a bit of what Hanukkah is.
  I said in the comments, that I do not know any Jews, because I do not live in a big city (Copenhagen). That requires an explanation, I think.
  From the reformation until 1849 all Danes were by law Lutheran. The law required all non-Lutherans to leave the country. The exceptions were foreign diplomats, a Jewish community in Copenhagen, a township for the Moravian Brethren in Jutland, and the town Fredericia (in Jutland) a free city, where everyone could stay.
  After the 1849 religion freedom by law. Jews still stayed in Copenhagen (and Fredericia), I think because of the walking to the synagogue thing, whereas Catholics, Methodists, Muslims, and other spread out - and today it's still this way. 



Come let’s celebrate.
A miracle in Jerusalem!
An end to deprivation,
lack and woe.

Hannukah - fest of faith and light 
Menorah’s oil was burning bright
For longer than it ought to
One candle first then two, then three,
Until all 8 are burning free.
For every day the wonder grew.

- - - - -

Coming up:

Ice Cream (December 13)
Music (December 20)
Fruitcake (December 27)
Sleep (January 3)
Peculiar People (January 10)
Ditch Your New Year's Resolutions(January 17)
Opposite Day (January 24)
Typo Day (January 31) Celebrate those funny (autocorrect) mistakes.

søndag den 5. december 2021

Sunday Selections :: Winter Edition

  The Birch trees have long since turned yellow, but this one won't drop its golden leaves.

  Birds in a field on my way home. They were very loud. Sorry for the not so stellar quality, zoom on an overcast winter's day makes for fuzzy pictures.

  It's geese on their way south.

  Some still are pulling themselves together on the ground. I think the snow will help them make up their minds.

  More geese on the wings. I'll keep an eye on them to see, when they leave.

  PE and a snow covered fountain. It prettifies it a bit.  
  These photo fits with Life in Colour, as Novembers colour was black or grey and Decembers is yet to be revealed, but maybe it's in here somewhere? I go for Violet as Jude promised it would make an appearance later on here.

  At least one of these small sweaters fills the bill. This display is a permanent feature showing part of what we do in our local weaver's guild.