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Biita's Blog

Who's Mad?

Category: Artic Living | Posted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 1:11 pm

Well we can take that 2 ways now, can't we. lol. Either I am totally off my rocker, or I am rip roaring ready to rumble.

Okay I was both today.

I got up this morning and looked out the window and seen this,

about an hour later, the snow started to fall. I sat at the kitchen table and just watched it amazed how fast the tables can turn here. Then I started to wish we had the weather that America and other parts of the world were having. Then I went on the Garden Stew. Did I feel a little better. I sure did!! Then I looked out the window again. I started to remember what yesterday was like. Theres green out there folks, real green. Look for yourselves. Yes there is snow there too, but theres green on the trees.

I even tried to catch some seagulls making their way to the North Sea, just over the mountain. Altho by the time i got the pic to focus, they were gone but look sunlight. And there really was seagulls.

So I started to think of other countries weather. That made me pi#### off, and when i get like that I start to cook. So I visited America. I made American pancakes, I don't have Vermont maple syrup but I did make blackberry syrup from Pennsylvania. Then I made Parker House Rolls. Good yeast rolls. Then I made a Hawaiian pineapple upside down cake. Then I went south after some more dough rose up, and made pecan coffee rolls, or close to it. Then I was still on my cooking spree when I opened the drawer to get my corn meal out,, and what!!! No corn meal. How am I going to make good Texas Corn Bread. OMG!! I don't even have popcorn to put in my grinder!

At that point I sat down at the kitchen table filled already with goodies, and looked out the window, picked up my coffee cup, and a huge crow started to read me the riot act. Woman!! Are you crazy? (yep) Just who are you mad at? (mother nature) Now who is going to eat all this? (Kolbjørn and Balder) Did you choose to live in the Artic or not? Now this stopped me right in my train of thought. I did choose to live here. I already knew what to expect, growing up in Lapland on the Sapmi. Then I looked out the window again. And smiled. Everything is still turning green, the flowers that have bloomed are still smiling upwards. The roads aren't snow covered, just the grass. Its not so bad. The seagulls are still laughing in their silly call. Animals are being born. It really isn't so bad.

So Kolbjørn came home a little early since he had to work all weekend, walked in the door, seen the table, his eyes got big, a huge smile lit up his face, and asked me " Who made you mad this time". As he dipped one pancake in the blackberry syrup with one hand, and cut a piece of cake with the other, and Balder drooling all over the floor. I was embarressed to tell him there was orange coffee cake rolls in the fridge.

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Ol' McSelnes had a Farm, E,,I,,E,,I,,Oh

Category: Artic Living | Posted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 5:01 pm

Okay we have a farm but the only thing animal wise is one very spoiled Rottweiler. We don't have animals on the farm now,, but at one time there was.

My husband, Kolbjørn, I think has had a mid-life crisis. I was told by a fellow Stewer that most guys buy a little red car and try for the younger chicks. Well Kolbjørn has all the horses minus the metal, no chicks but he does have a few piglets. lol. But anyways he was a carpenter at the museum, but during winter there wasn't enough to do so he got layed off, but just for a week,,lol. The Chief from the Viking museum asked him if he was intrested in training horses. He thought about it and said yes, 3 seconds later. (he thought real hard there) He has experience with horses so it was natural for him to accept the job. I on the other hand, had doubts. Besides the horses there is also the cows, boars and sheep. My first thought was "ohhh no, thats going to stink" then I thought "Awww I can take pictures of the cute little babies" Then I found out, this is a working farm just like how the Vikings did it. Survival. Food. Panic on my part. Ready to demonstate. Ready to throw Kolbjørn into the barn here on our farm.

Well he loves his new job, comes home tired but with a smile, and talks about what he did that day. To me thats all that matters, is he is happy, and also he has enough sense to take his work close off in the entry hall and not in the house! Good man!

So lets see how the Vikings raised their animals and what kind of breeds were from way back then.

The first picture is of the boars. Since here in Norway its against the law to own pure boars these ones are mixed with pigs. But you get the idea.

Daddy boar

Baby boars, there are actually 5 of them, and yes in 4 months they will be slaughtered for food.

Next is the cows, but only one pic I will show. This is the Nordland Cow. Specific to this area and the same kind as the Vikings used. The Nordland cows are black and while and have longer hair than the other domesticated cows here in Norway. She is a beauty.

Next is the sheep. These sheep are also Nordland sheep and are very small. They look like goats but they are sheep. Half the flock is pregnant. Yep you guessed it, but none has given birth yet,,, thank goodness. The first pic is some of the ladies, and the second one has the ram in it. His horns are spectactular. They just curl all around the side of his head.

Now we come to the horses. These also are the Nordland breed of horses that are indigenous to these parts of the country.
I don't know her name, but she is beautiful.

This is Big Wolf, and he is so bad,,lol. This horse knows how to open his stall hinges and get out. Or he just jumps the door and goes. But i love him.

Here we have most of the horses gathered around the hay feeder eating and enjoying the sunny day.

Next is Mjølner, he is one of my favorite horses there, and is left with the long hair in the Viking style. The Vikings used to braid and put shells or bits of metal to show their wealth or too dress up their horses. His hair was left long in that style.

Next is a horse I call Elmer. His is named also after a Norse god the same as most of the others are. But i have a hard time saying his name and remembering how to spell it. Now this horse used to be a terror. Seriously, he bit, kicked and would just chase anyone or any animal down. Then he was,,um,,clipped. Now he is so gentle. Elmer doesn't have a stall, but he doesn't need one either. He's spoiled and has the run of the farm. He has his bed out in the aisle and comes and goes as he pleases. Meet my baby, Elmer.

So Ol' McSelnes doesn't have his own animal farm, but he loves his job on the farm. Taking care of the animals the old Viking way, training them in the the Viking style. Yes my husband the farmer is smiling everyday now from the satisfaction he gets working the land and the animals, and in true form the Norwegian Viking charm is magical and has made its way home.

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The Sounds of ,,,,,,,,,,,,, Ice?

Category: Artic Living | Posted: Fri Apr 04, 2008 10:34 am

Think about it. The sounds of ice. What does it sound like, and how does it make you feel.

Think of a hot summer day, your thirsty. You need a cold, cold drink! So you get your favorite beverage, go to the fridge, open the freezer door an take out the ice cube tray. Now you take a few or alot of those little ice cubes an drop them into your drink. Do you hear the hiss, the popping, the cracking. You just know that drink is now going to taste so good. All because of ice.

Now think of that drink filled with ice cubes and put that on the scale of a huge lake or the fjørd. The hissing, the cracking, the popping. Its magical. Its refreshing. Its spring!

Here in the Norwegan Artic we hear those sounds all thru the turning of the season. From winter to spring. When I'm out walking with Balder, down the road just taking in the fresh air, the sounds, the smells of salt an fish from the sea, escaping from below the ice. I come alive. I come alive just as the earth does and bloom right along with it. With each crack that pops from the sea, with each hiss of air escaping from below my smile grows with the knowledge that soon this frozen wilderness will come to life once again. The water sounds from under the snow makes me laugh. The little bridges made by the melting of the ice so the water can run off into the sea.

All this is because you just can't hold back the circle of lifes cycle that is always turning away from you but always, always returning. The old norse legend of the winter snow giants an the summer dwarfs that are at constant battle with each other over if the Artic will be always in winter or always in spring. Each wins half the time. The winter giants win when the sun goes away for a time and the summer dwarfs win when the sun stays out all the time for a time. Inbetween is the struggle between the 2. All I can say is the dwarfs better win soon! And they will.

On my walk I noticed the ice is bulking up in areas on the sea, and large cracks are spreading farther an farther out to the middle. So Balder an I leave the road an go down to the sea.

Ofcourse yours truly has to test out the ice an see if its getting really thin or not. It is! It cracked when i stepped out a little onto it. But what i want to show you is under the ice. It was hard, and you can barely see it but there is no water! This is a very, very good sign indeed. The tide has shifted an is heading out to the ocean.

This is great! Spring is really on its way now. When the water starts to go low tide the ice cracks, and hisses, and pops and starts to talk to us to tell us get ready, were going to break up the ice now. I can tell you I really smiled big time when i seen no water. So I walked down to the end of our main road down to the mouth of the pole. The place where the water turns an goes out to the ocean. There I was shocked because just a week ago there was no "nes" or a strip of land that juts into the sea. You can see the "vika" or little bay taking shape into its small bowl mouth. The ice has already broke up there an will works its way down to our area probably with the month.

Balder an I walked all the way out to the tip of the nes and took a picture of the way back to the road. But you can see the water is there, but so is the ice, but barely. Won't be long now until we pull the boats out of the boat house an take off into summer!

Ahhh! I love the magic of the Artic. The land of fairytales an legends. The place where the land talks to you, and the ice speaks plainly. The land of sailors, vikings and farmers. The only place I call home.

This blog entry has been viewed 611 times

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