Thursday, July 22, 2010

Jacob´s 33rd birthday and Our front yard this morning

Yesterday was absolutely the most beautiful day of the year so far. Once Zelia woke from her nap we picked Jacob up and headed to Blonduos. We tried to do some errands, which were mostly unsuccessful but we got some wine for tonight´s birthday celebration. Then we headed to the pool and it was just lovely and relaxing and very fun. Zelia was beginning to swim on her own with her water wings, and go down the slide and dunk all the way under the water in the landing.

This morning we woke to begin celebrating Jacob´s 33rd birthday and found this when we opened our front door -check out the pics! Soon we will take the ice cream cake to Jacob´s work to share with his co-workers, yummmm. Tonight we will have wine, steak pomme fritts and possibly more ice cream cake! We are also hoping that Gisli and Gerdur may return to feast with us.

Jacob also got a good text this morning from the slaughterhouse that says we can come and choose our ribs and brisket, woohoo!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Summer so far

Well after a blustery beginning to July we have had the most spectacularly beautiful days and today wins so far!!!! After breakfast, hanging laundry, and kneading dough we headed out to do some errands and play in the park. Short sleeves and sunshine!

Gisli and Gerdur came for a long weekend. They arrived late on Friday night but so did Jacob and Anna and a suprise - Danielle!!!!! So we had another late Shabbat dinner. The hallah was delicious and the fish fresh and lovely. Anna brought a portuguese dessert and we all ate well and were exhausted. Danielle, Gerdur and I sat up late knitting and it just felt so good to be with good friends.

The next day we all slept late, ate pancakes and headed to Saudarkrokur and then to Grettislaug, the beautiful hot pot. It was great, coming in and out of the sunshine and the heavy fog in the mountains. Danielle left Sunday after a late breakfast and we enjoyed the sunshine and the smoker smoking chicken. It was so beautiful out we ate outside and got nice tans:) This was the first time Gisli and Gerdur ever ate a dry rub smoked chicken and it was a HUGE success!!!!!!

On Monday Gisli and Gerdur enjoyed hiking Spakonufell and then we all ate dinner before they headed out with our camping gear for an adventure.

Jacob is out on a boat today and should be returning soon. I am beginning to think of all the things we need to pack to leave for Reykjavik on Saturday and we are counting down the days for my parents and Kathie to arrive!

Zelia news...she stopped using diapers almost 3 weeks ago and it has been wonderful for her, she did it with no help from us, I never expected it! She is excited for the baby to come but every once in a while she's not coming yet:)

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Impossible Task of Playing Catch-up

Since it has been such a long time since I have written and because so much has happened I realized I was avoiding writing with the impossible task of catching up with all of it! So, I will do my best to mention some highlights but I will not attempt to "catch-up".

We have had a month full of visitors which has been a lot of fun and made June and now almost half of July fly by. First we were in Reykjavik and met Terri before heading to Isafjordur for Jacob's graduation. We were all able to stay together at Gisli and Gerdur's summer house which was great and got to spend lots of time together. Zelia was having a blast with everyone there and having lots of fun with her Grandma. Since Terri had already been in Isafjordur so many times it was great to be able to just relax and visit all together. On Thursday we all boarded the bus to Hrafseyri, the birth place of Jon Sigurdsson, the father of Iceland, where there was a really nice ceremony for graduation. Eight of the nine students graduated, and of those, 6 were there including Tanja who came from England, Astrid from Germany with her mom and Danielle who just returned for a year in Iceland to work. It was exciting to sit there and watch this first graduation of the program, knowing there were about 18 heading for graduation the next year and between 20-25 new students arriving in the fall - what a success!

After the ceremony which included wonderful traditional Icelandic hats we headed to Dynjandi for lunch. Unfortunately the flies were swarming and I mean swarming....think Memorial Day in the Maine woods...except not biting! Zelia was playing the entire time with Heidis a little girl a year older than her who is Gerdur and Gisli's grand daughter....they are expecting another about the same time as I am:) Back on the bus for dessert and later a BBQ at the school that evening. It was really a wonderful day that felt like a real celebration for the students and the program.

Once back in Skagastrond we were bascially on our regular schedule with a nice day trip around the peninsula and a visit to Akureyri where Terri bought Zelia her first bike!!!! What excitement. After about a good week Zelia got it! She loves her helmet too:)

Before Terri left Stephanie (old college friend of Jacob's) and her fiance Matt came for the night and we had a blast with them. We didn't have a long visit due to some flights changes but it was lovely to see them, catch up and enjoy the pool together in Blonduos. Zelia fell in love with Matt.

Then we had a week on our own where I began my sumardansskoli and had 4 students sign up. We danced every morning for 2 hours, atlernating days with classical ballet, pilates and modern, yoga and improv. I was surprised to learn that that was Zelia's last week at leikskoli. I scrounged to find someone to come in and be with her in the mornings while I finished my second week of dance.

Tanja came to stay with us for a few days after her artists' residency program and before returning to Enland and on Saturday Paul showed up for the week! We had a blast together. We all went to Grettislaug, our new all time favorite hot pot...sorry there are no pics, but you can see some on FB....In the mornings Karen would come and be with Zelia who frankly was more interested in being with Paul while I went to dance. Then whenI got back we tried to do different things. Unfortunately some of our plans were redirected when 60 mi/hr winds began to blow! We did manage to get Paul to Saudarkrokur to the tannery and the pool, to Hvammstangi to the wool factory and Blonduos for the pool and Skagastrond. As far as water experiences go we did pretty well! We also managed to serve him many Icelandic specialties but I am still surprised when I keep thinking of more. He is an adventurous eater so it was fun!

The two dance weeks flew by and the girls did great. On the last day parents came to visit and watched a wonderful improv. The head of the school would like me to come and begin teaching sometimes in October or November 2-3 times a week in the elective program. Sounds perfect!

Before leaving us this Saturday we were able to have a lovely Shabbat dinner with Aude, Siggi, Herdis and Anna (Jacob's intern from Portugal) and Paul. It was a late dinner since Aude and family were driving from Reykjavik. So we began with dinner 1, pizza from Kantrybaer:) Then we had dinner 2, introducting our guests to Shabbat and hallah! Before we knew it, it was midnight and time for everyone to go to bed!

Paul left early for the drive and after a pancake feast we all headed back to Grettislaug and had a blast, including a small picnic on the rocks of the hot pot. Today Siggi and Jacob headed to a river to fish (the same river Paul caught his first and second trout!) to fish and we met them a few hours later for another lovely picnic this time on the bank of the river. See above pictures.

This evening we have a quiet house and worked on putting the crib together. Only two weeks until we head to Reykjavik and my parents and Kathie arrive...we are SO excited. I am feeling really well, still very energetic, I will miss dancing this week. Zelia and I will spend time at the pool and watering the garden and just hanging around. I imagine we will do many many puzzles as it is her current obsession:)