Hello!

I'm Krisha - a Scandinavian mama and physician, a crafter, and an avid coffee drinker - trying to nudge my family towards a greener lifestyle!

   elQuiltro

Entries in nature (10)

Wednesday
May012013

Spring thoughts

Like most Norwegians, I naturally talk a lot about the weather since we have so much of it here. The really long, dark winters makes us very eager for spring to come with its bright and early mornings, birds, warmer weather and budding trees. Over the past decade spring has literally sprung earlier and earlier. There is now firm evidence that the growing season in Norway is 3 weeks longer than it used to be.

I can see the evidence myself - on our little island property, there is a cluster of 3 huge walnut trees. According to my neighbor, they were planted under much fuzz and care when she was a child, more than 60 years ago. She grew up with them. Apparently the excitement was big when the first nuts were formed, but, for as long as she can remember, they never ripened enough to eat or to produce new plants. About four years ago she pulled me over one morning, excitedly pointing to some greenery on her property. At first I did not see it but then, I noticed a tiny little walnut tree. Now they are all over our lot and hers. This is tactile proof that something is happening. Walnuts do not grow wild in Norway or at least they never did before.

This spring, on the other hand, feels like the springs of my childhood. The kids are still wearing hats. The trees seem to wait with budding and may even make it into May before they do. This makes it so tempting to think that everything is on its way back to normal. I so want to believe the climate skeptics with their "it’s only natural fluctuations" arguments. Meanwhile there are climate scientists quitting their jobs because they can’t bear thinking about the implications to the planet that their data is showing. I understand them. Global warming is an unbearably difficult topic.

Even though I think that it is not covered nearly enough in the popular media, there was an article recently in the local newspaper about how the polar melting accelerates. The record melting last year resulted in large expanses of open dark water up at the North Pole.  The dark ocean retains heat and attracts the sun where the white ice used to reflect the rays and heat back upward.  As the sun's heat returns to the North, more melting occurs and so a viscous cycle is started. This, paradoxically, is causing our spring to be a lot colder. 

A few days later there was a report in the same paper about how the Arctic nations are splitting up rights to the pole to go after the natural resources – mostly oil and gas – which exist up there.  Obviously, the oil companies don’t believe the skeptics and are making expensive moves on the basis that the climate is changing.  There is way too much short-term benefit from exploiting melting poles for us to expect industry to control themselves.  We need government action and we need it now – politicians need our vote and it’s time we made them take long-term and sustainable decisions before it is too late. 

 

Monday
Oct012012

Blogaversery! 

I have been blogging for a year now, and I have decided to celebrate it by re posting some of the posts I wrote through the year this month. I am staring with my very firts blog post, the colors of October.


I love fall even in the rain, so last sunday we took a walk around a lake i the woods surounding Oslo.

 

I noticed that my boy has already worn through the patches I made on his jeans.

 

Up here the autum colors are almost monochromatic in the rain. To me its beautiful and soothing on a sunday afternoon. 

Sunday
Sep232012

weekending

Since the end of summer, our weekends has had a tendency to turn into "workends" The turn of the season requires so much planning and work. There are whole wardrobes to change and replenish. There are winter duvets to search for in the over crowded attic. The whole family tries to settle into a new rhythm allowing for  individual schedules. I sometimes feel like a juggler with all this going on ... and let's not forget that all the "regular" tasks in a household needs that to be tended as well. As a working mom, the weekend often is the only time when all the mundane parts of the mommy job can be done. The problem, of course, is that there are conflicting interests - it is the weekend, after all - I want to sleep in, drink that extra cup of coffee (or extra two cups of coffee!) unhurried.  I want to play with the kids, work on new craft ideas, and just spend long, unstructured hours with my peeps.  

So, my Rosh Hashana (Jewish New Year) resolution is to WEEKEND every now and then.  Let the laundry stay that way another day or two.....

And boy, did we have a good first weekend in this new year!

We have cooked, gone for autumnal walks, picked apples, had a grand time with old friends and taken the time to see the light of September turn into the smoky blue light of October. 

I love that light and the smell of the air this time of year. I love how our noses turn cold and red. I love the hurry up and slow down that is fall here up north.

Thursday
Jul122012

Summering!

 

I am of the Friends generation, and when taking these pictures, a line of Phoebe's in the last season came to mind. She is sitting in the 5th Avenue apartment of her boyfriend and trying to impress his parents and so she says, after a total blunder  "...So, where does everybody summer?" with a phony posh accent and all.

Well, this is where we summer. It's not posh like I would guess the Hamptons or Nantukket are, but our island certainly has its unique charms. Its a car-free community of small summer houses in the middle of the Oslo fjord. We can live there in the summer and commute to work! The kids roam and grow wild and sticky by the end of summer. I get cabin fever and my husband wonders what are we ever going to do about this wild garden. 

There's been so much rain lately that, this year, we did not move out until the beginning of July.  Even though the garden was massively out of control by the time we got there, I love the meadowy look of the lawn, which has become home to a host of bumble bees  This is a species that is more and more under  threat, but yet so important to fruit production here and around the world.   Does that mean that letting the garden go is actually a good deed?

It's raining a lot this summer, so I mostly sit on our big covered porch and drink a second (or third) cup of cofffee and keep my knitting projects going.  When the sun does come out, I rush the laundry so that I can dry Baby A's diapers in the fresh air (rather than using my space heater concoction to dry clothes inside the cabin.)  

For the kids, as soon as there is sun, they are out - swimming, riding their bikes, eating wild strawberries or red currents and, generally, being kids the old-fasioned way.  Yep - they are part of the Youtube generation, but they can still skip rope and let their imaginations turn a stick into a rifle that they can use to battle their way out of an enemy ambush.¨

We can go the whole day not seeing them unless they are hurt or hungry!

This year, we decided to buy one of those mobile internet modems and, expecting lots of rain, moved out with a bunch of computers, etc.  The reception turned out to be really bad anyway, we forgot chargers for the computers and my iPhone broke, so, in the end, I have been off the grid for a while, and, frankly, enjoying it.  We decided to take a little cabin break and come into town for tonight to "dry out." 

Coming into town this afternoon I was struck with a nostalgic feeling from my childhood, when we used to come home from the cabin and check our mail, use the phone again to call our family and friends and basically reconnect with the world, albeit at such a slower pace lo those many years ago. 

Vacation is great - getting away from it all, letting your shoulders drop, etc.  It's also nice because you re-learn what you value when you do get back into the thick of our regular lives.  One of the pleasures I missed was writing this blog....

 

 

It may be a wet summer but,so far, it's been a good one. 

Friday
Jun082012

Keeping it real

Linking up with Monica at ink and chai this afternoon.

I find this to be a sobering way to round up the week and balance it in my head. And I am so happy I had the time to show up at the link up today!

Lows

self doubt

to much stress in the house

always feeling behind the 8 ball

 

PEAKS:

beautiful scenery on my way to work

june night skies in Oslo

seeing them being able to handle them self

Sunday
May202012

Rhubarb and strawberry jam

We have this tiny, tiny cottage on an island in the fjord. It sits on a huge lawn. On Friday the five of us piled into it for the weekend. I love the idea of spending time there, however I am really to old for the cramped quarters and so for the first few hours I am very crankiy. But then I get into it, sitting on the porch with my morning coffee watching the young dears trying to position themselves to the "ladies," listening to the birds.  And all this is only 30 minutes from our apartment in the center of town- sheer luxury! The garden is huge and under-developed, but we are slowly getting to know it , and know what we want to do with it. 

This weekend I spent most of my time in the raspberry brushes, which the scratches up my arms will prove. And I found some long forgotten and overshaddowed rhubarb patches.

I just LOVE rhubarb and strawberry jam so I picked the few who seemed to have grown properly, saved some strawberries from breakfast and, when we got home, I made this one jar of precious rhubarb and strawberry jam!