Spring delights

To balance yesterday’s negativity I wanted to share with you some spring delights that bring me joy and happiness at this moment.

Here is a list of things I love this season:

  • It’s sunny. The weather has been sunny for a while and gives me so much energy! Now it’s lovely to hang out at the playground with the boy. He loves to play outside in every weather but I like it more like this.
  • It’s warm. Ok, it’s not THAT warm but it’s warmer than a month ago. And the snow is gone. Hopefully we don’t see more snow before summer. The boy would love it though!
  • The first flowers are blooming. And the garden is waking up after winter. Soon I can harvest the first rhubarbs!
  • Tulips. Tulip season is almost over but you can still find some beautiful colorful bouquets. One of the reasons I love the tulip season is that I feel like it’s one of the first signs of spring.
  • It’s bright. One of the good things about summer in Finland is that it’s bright nearly 24 hours a day. Today the sun sets at 8:17 p.m. (I checked the exact time!) and it’s getting brighter every day. The boy is confused about bedtime though and every evening I hear an argument “it’s not dark yet hence I don’t have to go to bed”.
  • Summer planning. Almost as fun as the summer itself is spring when you can plan all kinds of activities and holiday plans for the summer. This year we will probably spend the summer in Finland (maybe visit Estonia or Latvia) and save a trip abroad for autumn. Maybe a trip to the Moomin world this summer?
  • Happy people. After the long, dark and cold winter it’s always nice to see the change in Finnish people. During the winter people seem very serious and busy trying to avoid any contact to other people. On spring it seems like someone lifted a weight of their shoulders and they open up, start smiling, talking and walking a bit lighter.

That’s it for now! Have a lovely day!

Mannamaria

The magical bedtime story

Have you heard of the book Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep? Did you try it and did it work?

We didn’t have big problems with falling asleep but after the twins were born the evenings got worse with the boy. Nothing serious but it took 30-45 minutes and some arguing for him to fall asleep.

I wanted to find a gentle way to ease our evenings. I found this book and ordered it to a book shop but before I got it I found it on sale.

This book is written by a Swedish behavioral scientist Carl-Johan Forssén Ehrlin. It’s meditational and written in a specific psychological techniques that will help your child to relax and fall asleep.

The author claims that the book will help anyone nod off instantly while listening the book.

We’ve been reading the book for the past week. During the weekend we advanced clocks by one hour.

Did this book work for us?

First night the boy was confused and kept asking why am I saying his name, as the book suggests using the child’s name in some parts of the story. “How does the book know my name?” I didn’t have a very good answer to him. I also read it too loud and fast. The boy did relax while listening and after I got to the end he fell asleep.

The second and third night were worse and it took quite a while after finishing the story that he fell asleep. He wanted to comment the pictures on the book and ask questions.

Then I decided that he can pick up a story that we read before the rabbit story. I was thinking that he might relax during that story and then fall asleep during the rabbit story. I also kept trying new techniques with my voice and my way of reading.

Nothing seemed to help. He wanted to listen the story to the end.

Then I decided that I will stop reading when I see him calming down and looking like he might fall asleep. If I continued reading at that point he continued to listen. And that worked quite well. He fell asleep half way through the book.

With us the book didn’t work as well as I had hoped but I like the idea of it so much that I will continue reading it. Maybe after reading it time after time it will get so boring for him that he will fall asleep instantly.

Good night every one!

Mannamaria

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picture from here

Easy sunday and a book recommendation

Today was a sunny and a beautiful day. I got to relax by reading this wonderful book. Jussi Valtonen’s They Know Not What They Do won Finland’s most prestigious literary award, Finlandia prize, in 2014. I have been planning on reading it ever since and I’m glad I finally did.

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It tells a story of an American top researcher and a Finnish post doc woman who get married, settle in Finland and have a son. Later they get divorced and the researcher moves back to USA. Twenty years later they both have new families and their son has grown up. The perspective changes from the researcher to the Finnish woman and their son and it editorializes the cultural differences, Finnish academic issues, animal testing and technology just to name a few. It is quite realistic and entertaining but has some tint of sci-fi and maybe even thriller in it.

The book has been said to follow in the footsteps of George Orwell’s 1984 or Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World. I’m not sure about that but I highly recommend it if you happen to see it somewhere.

Even though this was a very sunny week end and the temperature was nice +1 we took it easy and slow and finally got to snow sled sliding today when the sun was already setting. I have such a big baby belly that I couldn’t participate the sliding but I enjoyed watching my boys having fun outdoors. This is his absolutely favorite winter activity!

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