Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Confirmation and Scarlet Fever

Jacob spent the end of the week out east tagging fish. Since Zelia and I had a 3 hour nap on Friday we waited for him to come home for Shabbat dinner. It was a beautiful meal, with fresh fish and hallah and Zelia said ALL of the brachot - it was amazing! She even sang Shalom Aleichem...the only thing she didn't do completely was the entire kiddush. It was so fun to watch.

On Saturday we were mostly home making wrapping paper for Gudrun Anna's confirmation present and just hanging out in the morning. It was a beautiful day so we headed out for a walk in the mountains. We tried to stop and see some baby lambs in the car but our approach and Jack's barking sent them running into the fields. They are SOOOOO cute though. We went into a sweet little valley with a flowing river and walked along it. Jack got to run like a maniac and Zelia just wanted to walk in the river, sit in it and drink from Jacob's hand. It was great. By the end she had stripped down to her undershirt and pants and was saying "Daddy, want to run with me?" in a clearing by the river. She loves to put a long strand of dry grass in her mouth and walk around like her Daddy. Eventually she took off on her own, across the mossy fields, the dirt road and toward the fence with a ladder to get over it. Jacob went running when we realized it was probably an electric fence. Truthfully it wouldn't have hurt her seriously but she would not have liked it! Plus we have been teaching her about barbed wire...

On the way back home we stopped at one of the NES houses and invited everyone for a BBQ. In the end Katie and Oona came and we had a really delicious meal. Oono made pizzas to grill and Jacob cooked up and amazingly delicious baked Turbot with lemons, artichokes and chick peas, Katie made a lime and mint brown rice and we ate!

By the end of the evening Zelia was getting a bit of a fever and was having a hard time staying asleep. We said good night to the girls and tried to help Zelia. She was doing this very odd shaking thing which was a bit scary and we called Grandpa. He said she would be developing a high fever soon and to watch carefully for a rash developing, at which point we should take her to the ER. We put her in our bed and got a bit of sleep on and off. She woke at 5 asking for some bread and when we got up I realized she was covered in red bumps. So we called the doctor and headed out to meet him in the hospital in Blondous by 6. We really like this guy and although he is only in town a week a month we seem to see him every time!!!! After ruling our meningitis the strep came back positive and we left with some antibiotics. Later on we spoke more with Grandpa who after a few more questions said....Scarlet Fever! Poor girl was RED all over.

In the afternoon I left alone for Gudrun Anna's confirmation at the church, which Zelia had really been looking forward to. I sat upstairs and it was really beautiful. The church itself is lovley, very simple, wood paneled ceilings and some stained glass toward the front. The 13 kids were sitting toward the front in their white robes and toward the end of the ceremony each kid was called up for communion with their entire family, it was very beautiful and moving. I returned home, grabbed the 6 loaves of hallah and headed to the party to slice them up. This was the one request Gudrun Anna had of me:) In the end we decided to take Zelia along with us for a short while, we promised her cake and she had been looking forward to this all week. She absolutely LOVES Gudrun Anna. The tables were set so nicely, there were several cakes and some savory dishes as well, and Gudrun Anna who plays the piano played for all of us. It was sad for Zelia to be kept away from the kids and the toys, but it had to be done. But don't feel too sad, she ate ice cream cake and brownies!!!!

By the evening her fever was gone and she spent all of Monday feverless. In the morning Zelia cried wanting to go to school, but it was a holiday and closed so we walked to the park to play and met a mom and her daughter visiting form Reykjavik, but they come here A LOT over the summer. Then in the afternoon we headed over to the NES open house. After dinner, Jacob went out to fish and after a bath together Zelia fell fast asleep. She had a great day at school yesterday and I came home from pilates to a delicious meal of freshly caught trout (Jacob caught a 45cm and 50 cm trout the night beofre) with teriyaki delicious! Zelia ate a fillet and a half all on her own.

Today she slept late and when we got to leikskoli she ran in without even saying goodbye. This is a big day for her as she will be spending the WHOLE day there until 4!!! She will sleep there and then take a ride in a big truck to the farm to see the lambs and horses. Fun.

The days have gotten very long, no more darkness, and the sun has been shining although it is quite cool out. The laundry gets hung outside with frozen fingers and we play in the grass a lot. The baby is constantly moving and we are getting more and more prepared for it. We have an apartment in Reykjavik for the birth and will head over there July 24. We are really excited and Zelia is as well, but she she knows there is a bit more to go and says, the baby isn't coming yet.

We are looking forward to an adventure this weekend to Husavik and Myvatn!!!! yay.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Justin's visit....Things are Growing

We had a great 5 days with Justin, getting to know each other, playing, eating well and just hanging out. Honestly, now that he left it feels rather lonely.....Zelia totally fell in love and will be talking about him for a long time!!!

Here are some pictures from around the house, the flowers in bloom, the rhubarb beginning and the backyard playground:)

Zelia so badly wants to ride her bike, but the pedals are too far for her and it is not easy to get over the bumpy sidewalk...we would like to find her a balance bike and let her have at it!

The pool here has opened, but only for the kids' swimming lessons for school. It is so nice to see all the kids at various times of the day riding their bikes form school to the pool for a class and then back again. I love the freedom they have here.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

What a Sunday

We had a nice morning, Jacob made ponnukokur and we talked about what to do for the day. From the moment Justin woke, Zelia was at his side talking and playing with him. Tomorrow when he leaves she will be heart least she will look forward to leikskoli and in the end Jacob didn't leave tonight!

It had snowed at night and there was a light dusting on the top of the mountains. Jacob, Zelia, Jack and I went for a walk and at times the snow came down to us! It was cold and grey and overall not a nice day at all. We played inside and made some things with felt, including knuffle bunny and then enjoyed a yummy buttermilk, cauiflower soup that Jacob whipped up. After a nice nap, I called Solveig (the other owner of the sewing company) and asked if we could come and visit her farm. She had told me that she had lots of horses and several pregnant mares. I thought she had sheep as well, but was wrong. We drove to the farm and up the road to the farm house, there were horses everywhere and a tractor driving off in the fields. At the house we were greeted by two dogs, Solveig and Stefan her husband. They walked us around and showed us the 1 yr old stallions and then to the pregnant mares. Their main stallion, the breeding one, was close to the 12 pregnant mares. He was beautiful, 9 years old and chestnut and white. Jack was going crazy, barking and looking at the horses. We followed the mares out a bit and learned more about them, including two that are of 6 in the world whose coats change colors 4 times a year with the season, and they really change, white, brown, chestnut, black - amazing. After a while their dogs rounded up the mares and Jack ran with them, it was pretty funny to watch him.

their granddaughter, Alexandra 13, was the one driving hr tractor and she came to join us, Zelia was , of course, fascinated by her and tractor driving. We were told to come back next weekend when we might catch a birth and at the very least they expect a foal...yay. We would love to see some of the lambing as well, but don't know any of those farmers yet...I get the feeling we could knock on anyone's door, everyone is SO welcoming!

They are not a horse meat farm as I had assumed but mostly breed for riding and for selling abroad as riding horses. They mostly sell to Sweden, Denmark and Germany. We headed back to the house and had some coffee, tea and cookies. It was really a lovely visit and we were glad to have gone.

Justin got started making some vegetarian chili and we headed outside to play in the sunshine!!! Yes, it came out and was beautiful. Zelia was first playing with Jack and singing, then running with Jacob and eventually we were all outside just hanging out in the yard and lying on the grass. At one point she came outside totally naked!!!!! After a quick hug she went back in and brought her clothes:)

While eating our yummy meal Halldor called and we thought for sure Jacob would be heading out but he was just calling to see if he wanted to head up to a mountain lake for some fishing with him and Pali. So, the 4 of them have gone, Zelia is asleep and I am getting busy working on Ian's sweater!

Here are 2 videos, both mostly of Zelia. She is singing Somewhere over the Rainbow in one and then playing, in the second she is singing ABCs - ever since Justin got here she has been serenading him with that song!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Catching up

It has been a long time since I have am trying to think back to what has been happening.

Jacob has been spending a lot of time out at sea on short trips, gone for 1-2 nights. He usually comes back with lots of fresh fish to fillet and for us to enjoy. Zelia and I really miss him when he is gone but thankfully it is only for a short while. There are many families here where the dad leaves for a month at a time.

We have been fixing up the back yard that has an old swing set. We need to ask someone to come and weld the see-saw back on and there is also a nice little sand box. Saevar, our landlord, who is now out at sea, let us know that in the summer the horses will come right up to the back yard, so he always installs an electric fence. He said his grandchildren touched it once and never again! I am sure not.

Zelia now LOVES leikskoli and asks to go everyday including the weekends. She is speaking more and more Icelandic when she is playing on her own at home and is at the moment singing the itsy bitsy spider in Icelandic - I love it!

I began teaching some kids this month both yoga and dance. I had really expected to have many many girls, but alas, no. I have 4 girls who come to every class and sometimes someone new to yoga. We are having a blast together which makes up for the disappointment. Yoga and pilates are continuing and I have some great women in class which again make it all worth it. This month there is an Icelandic dancer at NES and it has been great to get to know her.

I finished Jacob's lopi sweater which is my first with a zipper and after trying several times to get the zipper using Gunna's sewing machine, I walked across the street to Fjola, who put it in quickly for a bargain of 500isk!!!! She and another woman own a sewing company in town and she invited me to come and visit. So, on Wednesday I walked over after the gym and had such a nice time. It is sort of hard to explain why it was so nice, but I walked into a small room filled with fabric and machines (on Singer from 1902) and two women. They bought the company from Akureyri 5 years ago and they make hospital bed linens and work uniforms. We chatted in Icelandic, they invited me for a coffee and it was just really nice. They said I should come back whenever I want for some coffee...I certainly will. Right outside there were some horses and a new foal:) Lambs and foals are everywhere now.

Jacob's friend Justin arrived here on Wednesday and we have been having a great time together. On Thursday Zelia and Jacob were off for the Day of Ascension. Jacob and Justin went fishing in a nearby lake and brought back 2 char and 2 trout - delicious! Justin is a fabulous cook and we have been enjoying pasta bolognese and lentil soup:)

Last night we hosted a Shabbat dinner with 4 women from NES, from Iceland, US, and Australia. We had a great time and the food was delicious. Jacob also prepared some sea bird that he was given on his last trip out east. Everyone brought something and we had a great time. Before we knew it it was almost midnight and of course still light out. After about 2 weeks of beautiful weather, lots of sun and almost no wind, the wind picked-up last night and was howling. The clouds were racing by the window.

We had leisurely morning and then all headed to Saudarkrokur for some swimming...lovely, we are always so happy when we do that. After a few errands we stopped at the bakery for some kelinur and headed home. Zelia fell fast asleep, and after some food we all went for a nap.

Jacob is working hard on his felted clogs...he is almost done with his first one and I have begun working on Ian's sweater. Zelia's sweater is also finished and you will see it in the photos. She asked for a red sweater and here it is. It is too big, but at least will last through next winter and maybe longer. Here are several vidoes of her and also some pics of her first piny she has been wearing pig tails, she is getting so big!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Zelia Stories and dreams

Zelia came into our bed around 5:30 and had a hard time settling. Once she got to eat some apple she eventually fell back asleep and woke at 7:30. Jacob went in to meet her and she said, "my dog ate my car" When I came in she repeated, "Jack achal at haotoim sheli". For the first time she shared a dream, so fun.

The other night as we were going to sleep she said to me, when the baby comes out then Saba and Amama will visit. Then the next morning we were talking about the baby coming out and when Jacob asked her how it was going to come out she said, "with it's the bathtub!" Lovely, watching all those water births have left an impression, so cute.

She is doing great at leikskoli and loves to go now. Her teachers, Ceci, Gogo, Sandra and Sigga are all her friends and she likes to tell us about them by saying this, "My friend who is Sandra...."She also likes to talk about the other children, Athena and Valdimar, siblings who live down the street, and Snaebjorn - she likes him!

The other day I looked at their menu and saw that was being served horse totally bothered me, I have not given her horse on purpose. I guess I could have asked them not to, but should have done it earlier. I know it is hypocritical, but it just bothers me....I will get over it I guess, but not me ever and never in my house!

The last few days with the babysitter have been pretty hard for her, I am not sure what is happening exactly but I think May will be hard because I am out teaching more in the's temporary which is good, poor girl.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

That dog food is good - this one is for Aunt Laurie

Well, we were supposed to head to Reykjavik for the weekend but Jacob´s toe nail surgery ended up being a great deal more painful than expected so we changed our plans. After lots of meds, an extra trip to the doctor, by Saturday Jacob was feeling a lot better. We spent the day together relaxing and went to the Red Cross market and ate waffles.

In the evening we were hanging out in the living room and Jack and Zelia were in the hallway, we could hear Jack crunching away on his food. Jacob got up from his knitting (yes, he is making felted clogs, they look like so much fun I will make some as well) and began laughing. Zelia was on the floor munching away on Jack's dog food, with her cheeks full like a chipmunk! She was drinking from his bowl as good parents we grabbed the flip and took a video:) I will let it speak for itself.

Today we drove 2 hours to Akureyri. Zelia and I had never been and I even got to enjoy driving there. I have done very little driving in Iceland and it was so lovely. The drive was gorgeous, through an amazingly beautiful valley and over some mountains. We got to Akureyri and walked around the shopping street with Jack. Everything was closed, but we looked in the windows and just enjoyed it, very, very sweet. We were really there to hit the stores, Bonus, with which Zelia is obsessed, Toys R Us for a tool kit for her and some other odds and ends....blankets for guests, etc.

After its beginning it turned into a very nice weekend. Tomorrow Jacob will try to get to Reykjavik for his shots and I begin my kids' dance class!!!! Crazy, I am so excited to see how many show up...I will update. Two lovely girls are coming over to be with Zelia and hopefully the longer haul with them will work out.