Monday, 24 April 2017

Milkshake mania

Kids were off school this Sunday due to the Israa & Mi'raj muslim holiday. Great stuff as we could stay over in Dubai and get an extra day away, almost felt like a mini vacation!

We were going to meet up with some friends from Brunei who were in town, and when it was suggested that we'd go to the fairly new Black Tap restaurant I got super excited. For two reasons: It is situated in the Jumeirah area, which I'm not so familiar with and have been wanting to explore for forever AND - obviously me too I've seen those milkshake photos all over Instagram... and really wanted to try one for myself!!

Here's triple trouble, Tim, Nathan & Andrew:

About to get our shake on! Yeah, not cheap, but a one-off thing that had to be done!
The original Black Tap bar in New York is so famous that people apparently queue for hours just to get one of these milkshakes (and snap a photo for Instagram, of course!). Here there was six different shakes on the menu here, and I read somewhere that each one has up to 1600 calories... oh boy...

Work of art style milkshakes in preparation:

Just look at these monster milkshakes!! Oah!! The photos don't do these creations justice at all as it's hard to capture exactly HOW humongous they are...
Linnea chose the Sweet n' Salty and Lucas the Brooklyn Blackout. Needless to say there was enough for all of us around the table to get a taster!

I must say, this place had fantastic food and great ambiance! And craft beer! Just such a shame the music had to be so loud, even at lunch time. Sure, it created a cool bar/pub atmosphere, but made it really hard to have a conversation with anyone else than the person right beside you.

Kids and I took a stroll through the Souk Madinat as well. I can't believe I hadn't been there before. As touristy as it is, it is still really pretty and beautifully constructed with picture perfect views of the Arabian Gulf and the Burj Al Arab.

The Confirmation after-party

After church, and after checking in to our hotel, we went back to the Dehlis to continue the celebrations. We had brought Malthe some balloons, filled with cash, of course!

As soon as we arrived he was allowed to start opening his gifts. The Dehlis have a large family, so there was many greetings, many gifts, and many envelopes filled with money, money, money..!

Lucas had to help read out the card from us, as I had written it in Swedish:

Danes sure love their traditions, and the Confirmation is one of the big ones. Of course it is about God saying yes to you, and accepting you - but most of all it is celebrated as a coming of age ritual. It is really seen as a major milestone, and most Danish families spend a fortune on their youngsters on this day. Malthe was no exception, he received so many amazing gifts, a lucky, lucky boy!

The weather was still just about ok to be sitting outside. Here's all the grown-ups:

Anne and Bibber, her mum:

The boys:

We were treated to a lovely three course meal, brought in by the caterers at Martha's Kitchen. During the dinner there was a lot of speeches, again, according to Danish tradition. Even Nathan managed to say a few words, ha ha! The Danes love their speeches, and - their songs!

The flag-sticker-song..:

The night ended with a football cake, yum:

Thank you Malthe for inviting us along to share your special day. Congratulations again!

Malthe's Confirmation

On the weekend we were invited up to Dubai to take part in Malthe's Confirmation at the Scandinavian Church. We have known the Dehlis for 10 years this year, so we have been there for the growing up of all our kids. It was rather special to get to take part in this important day of Malthe's.
All four priests helped out running the ceremony, both the Danish, Swedish and Norwegian, as the kids getting confirmed came from all three countries.
All together 30 youngsters got confirmed this weekend, and our friend Malthe was one of them. Anne and Frederik will host summer party at home in Denmark later in the year to celebrate this big occasion, but apart from us taking part, both sets of Grandparents had also flown in to Dubai for the ceremony itself.

The sermon was held by the confirmands, who each got to speak about what Christianity means to them. Lovely to listen to.

Our kids got a little bit bored during the service as it was hard to pay attention when the languages kept changing, and due to the large number of confirmands it drone on a bit. But all together it was a lovely service, I sure enjoyed it - full of light, love and hope for a bright future of these kids.

We were invited to church coffee in the garden afterward, before we head back to the Dehlis for a celebratory dinner. Swedish kanelbullar, mmm!

Proud family:

Thursday, 20 April 2017

World Book Day

World Book Day is celebrated around the world this coming Sunday, but as we are off school then due to the Israa & Mi'raj muslim holiday (= the Prophet Muhammad's journey from Mecca to Jerusalem, and ascent into heaven), all the kids at school got to dress up as book characters today.

I didn't get to grab a photo of Lucas but I don't think anyone would have any chance guessing who he was supposed to be anyway in his jeans and long sleeved black shirt (... Archie). Linnea on the other hand did her both her hair and a bit of make-up to look like - Thea Stilton, from the Geronimo Stilton books, her current favourite:

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Happy Easter

We have celebrated Easter in many different ways over the years, depending on where we have been at the time. We have spent Easter both in Sweden and NZ, and over the years there have been outside egg hunts, inside egg hunts, Easter parties, Easter parades and just celebrations at home.

Usually the kids get their eggs, whether they are chocolate or the traditional Swedish paper eggs with gifts, on the Saturday morning, which is called Påskafton in Sweden.
This year both kids had friends for sleepover on the Friday so I decided to wait a day with their Easter eggs. But of course Linnea is always on the ball so she got disappointed when there was no eggs, and decided to text Mormor to tell on me, ha ha!

-"Happy Easter"
-"Can you talk to Mummy and tell her she needs to give us Easter eggs"
-"Yes I will. You need Easter eggs."

Gotta love it!

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Easter Coffee Morning

Today I hosted a smaller coffee morning at my house, to celebrate Easter with some of my Swedish friends.
I meet with these girls sometimes, but usually always out and about, so for something different I decided to invite them around to have coffee at mine today.

I had been baking, and as per usual it might not have looked all that fancy, but it tasted great!
We had Silvia cake, pumpkin cake, tea cakes, white chocolate and lemon cookies, peach strudel and liquorice gooey cake with raspberry cream. Mmm!

Monday, 10 April 2017

Easter in our house 2017

It's Easter this week and our house is Spring ready! Thanks to my well timed visit in Scotland last year just before Easter, I've been able to add some new Easter decorations this year. I also now have both Easter twigs, and shoots of pussy willow! Let's have a little look!

My Cult candle light holder has got Easter colours; and the cute white bunny plate is actually a cupcake stand, but I use that for a candle too:

I bought these egg cups years ago in Berlin:

Chickens that I've inherited from my Grandma:

A rabbit in the kitchen:

The weather has been absolutely awesome since we've been back from Denmark. I was worried that it was already going to too hot, but it's only been around 26-28 degrees during the day, perfect. We are enjoying it as much as we can, while it lasts, by having the back door and the windows open all day long. The breeze coming through makes it feel like a perfect Swedish summers day.