Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Indoors again....

Here is Jacob's first knitting project, an adorable bunny for Zelia, way to go!!!!

This is Zelia jumping off her play dough.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Fabulous Dessert - good for Pesach too!

When we were in Isafjordur the other weekend Birna made a delicious dessert that came from the cooking magazine here, Gestgjaffin. Either in January or April they had an issue all about superfoods with this recipe.

500gr dates
500ml water
1 large or 2 small bananas
100ml of coconut oil (I just used what looked right in coconut flakes)
150 ml oatmeal (just put in matzah meal or skip)
cut up lots of delicious fruit: kiwi, melon, banana, pears, apples, berries, mango
1 bar good dark chocolate

Cook the dates in water, add coconut, let cool add banana and mash with blender
spread in pyrex and cover with cut up fruits, chop up chocolate and spread over everything - EAT~

Children's Story Book

Saturday morning was beautiful...it was mild and no wind. We headed out with Jack and stroller to go the the post office and Samkaup and just get outside. Right by the post office is a house with a very cute dog and at least a rooster that we have been hearing. As we were hanging out and chatting a bit with the owner, Halldor came running by and introduced us officially. We got to see the chickens and even got a dozen eggs. The post office was closed so off to Samkaup. We were going to the post office to pick up our Pesach care package from Bryan and Nina!!!! They sent us matzah, matzah meal and cake meal, yay and THANK YOU!!!!! I failed to mention that due to Zelia letting Jack out before we left Jacob locked the door, which I pulled shut without the keys!!!! So, after the market we went to Halldor to get a screw driver. That morning it seemed we had bumped into everyone we know, which isn't much, but they were all out. We walked by Oli (Halldor's dad's house) and got a pipe wrench too. Back at home, Jacob crawled in through the window and we were in!

While Zelia slept we worked on getting dinner together, Halldor, Sigga, Gudrun Anna, Pali and Oli were coming. Jacob was preparing the cod he had caught earlier in the week with sherry, raisins and pine nuts, savory bread pudding, roasted red peppers, barley and chickpea salad and a yummy dessert...perfect for Pesach by the way. It was a wonderful evening, the kids all played inside, then on the porch then out with Jack and then finally at the park. It was SOOOOO nice. somehow they all knew when to return for dessert:) and then kept playing inside until almost 9. the daylight is pretty long now...light at 7am and dark by 8:30ish.

Sunday was also a very nice day, cooler but still not windy. We walked to the beach and along it which Jacob has been dying to do for a long time. The beach here is black sand. Zelia walked all the way there and back and had the most fun finding sheets of ice to break with her feet. After all that walking she was pretty tired and just lay in bed quietly playing...one of the videos.

Zelia and I napped and Jacob headed out with Pali and Halldor to do some ice fishing...he came back with a trout for dinner, yummmmm. Zelia loves eating the freshly caught fish.

Our week

Last Monday we had an "in all day" day, which was not so much what I had planned but all Zelia seemed to be able to muster. Perhaps after being away for the week staying in and at home was best. It was only my difficulty in changing my mindset that made things challenging. By Tuesday she was back up and running and we went to the sporthouse to meet the kids from Leikskoli. What fun she had. The smaller group, her group, didn't come but she had a blast running around with the older kids and they were SO sweet with her, taking her hand and bringing her along.

In the afternoon we headed over to visit Sigga and kids. We walked over in the wind and cold, Jacob went to the gym and then met us there. There was quite a spread when we arrived, with lots of fruit, homemade bread that Oli made in school. The kids here have cooking lessons from first grade up which is really great. Halldor drove us home and Pali and Oli came to meet Jack which was a big hit! Then on Wednesday Pali and Oli came over to babysit Zelia while I taught yoga. We thought Jacob would be going to Reykjavik but he ended up able to change his trip and he came to yoga as well. It was amazing, she just waved us off and we went! I think in about an hour Gudrun Anna showed up and right before the class was over Jacob got a call...she had fallen wouldn't stop crying.

Thursday afternoon Jacob hopped a ride to Reykjavik to return Friday night and we headed out to meet a woman with a 3 yr old and 10 month old for the afternoon. It was a nice afternoon and I actually did it all in Icelandic - hopefully it wasn't too painful for her!

Thursday night was a bit rough, the wind was howling, and I am scared of the dark to boot, ugh. Zelia went to sleep but woke at 4:20. I tried for an hour to get her to sleep, then left and she cried for half and hour, finally I told her to bring Shafan and come to my bed and we slept until 8!!!!! Blech. We woke Friday morning to continued wind and were not able to go anywhere!!!! I put her on my back to walk Jack, it was not easy walking and she wasn't as protected as I thought she might be....no leikskoli. But we did make hallah and had a nice day none the less. Halldor knocked on our door just before five and took us to his house and then to Pali's birthday party. We were all at the youth house, the music was loud and the kids were having a lot of fun. There was pizza and rice crispy chocolate cake, Zelia was having SO much fun and hanging out the whole time with Gudrun Anna, who reports that she was speaking more and more Icelandic:) IT was nice to see the kids and the party all simple, nothing fancy. The gifts were the same, not over the top, small things, very nice in my opinion. Here are some pics of Zelia at the party!

We made it home around 9, got ready for bed and Jacob came in for the goodnight...perfect.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Gorgeous day

We woke this morning to sunshine and blue ski and it has been spectacular.

Zelia, Jack and I headed out to the park to play on the boat and swing. Jack ran around like a maniac and we just played and played, went fishing and climbed up and down hills. here are lots of pics and...

zelia has a plastic mold of grapes, but to her it is hallah and she picked it up and said the full bracha for lighting the candles...enjoy the video.

Also since we have been back she has been wanting her pacifier like Arnar´s and her bunny has been going to work, to the doctor´s and then to Gerður´s to eat cake!

a Lovely visit to Isafjordur

What can I say...it was like coming home. We had a long drive and Zelia, as usual these days, was a champ in the car. We arrived at Gisli and Gerður's at about 6:30 and Zelia seemed like a new child. Since coming here she hasn't responded to anyone in Icelandic and actually was turning her head away, once with Gerður she wasn't speaking in sentences but responding with já and nei. Of course we had a delicious dinner and got to see Tómas and Katrín Maria, perfect. Plus we ended the evening with a swim in the hot pot and Zelia was thrilled to be back.

The next day Jacob went off to teach the grad students and we had a nice walk with Jack and Gerður. Zelia was leading the way and we both swear she was walking to leikskoli. Then we met Jacob at school, gave hugs and kisses to whomever we saw. After her very SHORT nap we went to the doctor´s since she was coughing and coughing still. Actually I had gotten her some cough medicine at the herbalist which loosened her up - a good thing- but she sounded terrible! Anyway, turned out she had an ear infection and we got her on a regimen of tylenol, cough medicine and saline nasal spray. After much screaming at the very nice doctor we headed to the store and enjoyed cake.

On Saturday morning we hit Bónus with Jamie and then went to the music time at the store. I am so happy that it is back up and running. It was a blast to see all the kids and friends and Zelia just went off on her own to play. After several hours there we went to visit Heiði, Alexander, Sigga and Edward. It was a lovely time and Zelia had a blast playing with Alexander again. It was a marathon day, from there we headed to Kata´s 75th birthday party (Gisli´s mother). More fabulous people and food, back in the stroller and to the other side of town for a pot luck at Birna´s with some of the students and the professors from Washington Jacob had taught for Friday morning. It was a feast, roast lamb, reindeer, potatoes, salads, and a delicious desert. Zelia again had a great time with Arnar, Birna´s son, who had the same pacifier.

After a delicious breakfast of fish, pancakes and eggs we headed out back home. The trip was long, about 5.5 hours and once we could see Skagatrönd Zelia burst out laughing, so happy to be home. We had a car full of stuff and we just let both Zelia and Jack out while we unloaded. It was so great to let them both just run around around the neighborhood and know we had no worries.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Welcome back Jack

Last Tuesday morning we headed for Reykjavik in Jacob´s work car...a big truck as I have mentioned before and boy did we need it by the end!

The drive was rather easy and Zelia did well. She was excited to get Jack and we had to keep reminding her that we weren´t going to get him until Thursday but that we would head to swim in a pool that night.

We arrived in Reykjavik in time for lunch at the hotel, a nice big salad bar, and then Jacob went to work for his meeting. Zelia and I headed to Laugarvegur to walk around and I wanted to find felt to make a felt story board for her. I wasn´t successful, but Zelia walked a lot and I did find a large health food store with lots of different flours and even amaranth. We went to a cafe and had some tea and pönnukokur. On the walk back she fell asleep again and even I was able to take a little nap back at the hotel. We were staying at Hotel Cabin which was quite nice, clean and comfortable, the nicest hotel we had stayed in Reykjavik yet. When Jacob finished with his meeting we went to find some dinner and found a great little place which was cheap and VERY good, yummi yummi. It is Thai food and it was delicious, plus they sold us a 5 kilo bag of short grain brown rice for 1300isk!!!! Jack-pot.

After dinner we headed out with the stroller to find a large swimming pool. We went the wrong way and what should have been a 5 minute walk was at least 45 minutes. There are many large geothermal pools in Reykjavik and we had yet to have been to one in the city. It was huge and fabulous but short lived as Jacob got a wicked migraine. We headed back and met Halldór, Jacob´s boss, across the street from the hotel. We shared his popcorn and bought ice cream and hung out for a while before heading to bed.

The next day Jacob had a pretty full day but we also had to go to the hospital with him to meet the head allergist and to get him back on his venom therapy schedule. Zelia and I headed into town in the rain, she napped and we met Lana and Erling for lunch at a great vegetarian restaurant, Á Næstu grösum, it was a good find and eventually Halldór and Jacob joined us. We spent a long time in the hospital where Jacob learned he would have to return once a week for the following month!!!!! Ugh. A few more errands including a stop at the Thai grocer and we went to Edda´s place to make dinner and spend the night.

We have stayed with Edda several times, she is my old friend Ylfa´s mom, who moved back to Reykjavik more than a year ago. She is incredibly hospitable and it is great to spend time with her. The next morning was the big day! Jacob left to get Jack and we waiting at home.

The doorbell rang and they were back!!!!!! Jack looked so cute, so fluffy and was so excited. Zelia was running around after home saying Jack Jack, here´s Jack. Jacob said that when he first saw him he thought he had a gained a tremendous amount of weight. They had groomed him and he was SO fluffy he looked huge! Can´t believe they groomed him! Before too long we got our things in the truck and we headed to Ísafjörður. With Jack in tow, Zelia ready for a nap and one errand to run we were all together again, our family:)

Monday, March 8, 2010

Weekend Dreams

We had a lovely night on Friday night with Halldor, Sigga, Oli and Pali. In the morning Zelia and I made hallah and Zelia REALLY helped! She stirred the flour until it was too stiff and then had her own little hallah. I am still figuring out the convection oven and over baked it but it came out deliciously. Letting it rise in the laundry room does wonders:)

Halldor picked us up as the wind was blowing hard. They made a feast, roasted lamb, potatoes, sauted mushrooms, delicious sauce, peas and red cabbage. When we sat down and I asked Zelia what she wanted she said "Basar - meat" and She ate a lot of it! For dessert we had blueberries picked over the summer with whipped cream, strawberries and bananas and when we thought it was all over out came the congac and chocolate! Zelia was having a blast playing with the boys, especially Pali, and was given a big crate of toys to bring home including lego! The evening ended with Halldor playing guitar, Jacob learning and Zelia strumming.

Saturday remained incredibly windy and we went outside and put Zelia on her skiis for the first time!!!!!! We just were out on the said of the house. She was pretty unsure of the whole ordeal, but Jacob put his skiis on as well and they went back a forth once or twice. It was SO windy it was hard to walk. We then put her in the stroller to walk, but again the wind was blowing SO hard, we didn't get very far:) In the afternoon one of the artist residents gave a class in what ended up being art therapy. Jacob went and we stayed home - we should have know that in Iceland children are always welcome, so next time.....he came home with a painting for Zelia and a card for me, bot hanging on our walls now.

Sunday was a bit milder wind wise, but a bit colder as well. We headed out to visit the horses who were very fiendly and followed us along their pasture. Then we made a nice walking loop and Zelia dozed. In the afternoon Jacob went to Halldor's dad's house and we took a car he is selling for a test drive. There are SO many used cars for sale in this country. It is a great price and tempting but too small for us in reality so we will keep looking. We did get to go to Samkaup in Blonduos though and drive around a few neighborhoods. Actually we came across a house in town that we are VERY curious about...looks very green, huge sloped roof, almost no walls in a sense and a green house out back and fish drying on the line. Of course when jacob returned the car he was invited in for coffee and treats.

The nights with Zelia have been a bit rough lately as she is waking up from coughing. The last two nights only Jacob has gone in to sooth her which has made for a lot of screaming, but last night was better than the night before. The funny thing that happened was, after putting her to sleep we were sitting and watching Glee when we heard her talk, she kept saying "Sigalit, bishvil Sigalit, Jack-Jack, Jack-Jack" Sigalit is a character in one of her favorite books at the moment and at home Zelia pretends to go to Reykjavik in her car and bring Jack back, so we can only imagine that she was dreaming and bringing Jack to Sigalit!!!! This morning she said she was in the book with her. I love it!

Today we are heading to Leikskoli and in the the afternoon to the artists' residency where they are having an activity for kids. Then yoga for me and tomorrow morning we are off to Reykjavik! It's going to be a fun week, with swimming in nice pools, going to some cafes, getting Jack and heading to Isafjordur. We cannot wait to see folks there.

here are a few videos, skiing, laughing and harmonica.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Daisa kmo Grandma - Oatmeal like Grandma

This morning, after getting the bread machine going, Zelia and I headed out to the church to see if mommumorgun was happening. It was quite windy and incredibly icy - not easy walking. we got to the church and nothing....I figured we could go over to the sports' house and see if the gym was free so we could play a little bit. When we got there it was clear that the schedule is packed with PE classes, but Zelia was mesmerzied watching the older kids play! When the second group came in it was Pali's class and he was excited to see her and some of the kids asked her name.

We stayed for a while, checked out the very small and simple workout room and chatted with some folks. Eventually we learned that there is no mommumorgun anymore, but that there were 2 times during the week we could come and run around.

By the time we left we were both starving and Zelia asked for hot cereal. When ew got home I was making i along with some cooked prunes to put on top when she said "kmo Grandma" like Grandma. Her memory keeps surprising me although it shouldn't anymore. while we were in the US, one morning in Swampscott after Terri had spent the night she ate oatmeal with stewed fruit!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


So our little town has 523 people in it - you know those last three! We have a samkaup market for food, a gas station with a convenience store and grill, bank, post office, preschool elementary school, health center, sport house, pool in the summer, community hall, elderly housing and international artists' residency with 10 people here at the moment, a town hall and a country western restaurant!

Actually it's the restaurant that provides the lunches for school if kids would like otherwise they head home to eat which is great. Jacob literally works down the street and is home everyday at 12 to eat with us. because of the restaurant the Samkaup carries about 15 kinds of BBQ sauce and you can take line dancing! There are limited hours during the winter but it is open. We haven't been yet but we will get there eventually.

The town is doing well for itself. Before the crisis hit they moved all their money out of the market and into a savings account so unlike other communities they are secure and financially growing. It is with the help of some of this money that BioPol was founded (company Jacob is working with) and the artists' residency. here is the site for it


This is horse country, sorry to tell you they are for riding and for eating. Our landlord who lives above us is a fisherman but also raises horses. We are excited to get Zelia on one this summer.

Playing in the snow with Daddy

We woke yesterday to an absolutely gorgeous day! The sun was shining, the wind calm and the snow had stopped. Our road was finally being cleared and we headed out to Leikskoli. She prefered to stay inside and play with the dolls with two girls who were not playing outside and she was able to be around a teacher a bit more which is good. Unfortunately today I heard that she probably won't have a space until May...

When Jacob came home from work, before I left to teach, Jacob and Zelia had a blast playing outside. Jacob was busy building a snow house and then making a slide of snow.