Saturday, August 11, 2012


This past week has been sort of an involuntary staycation for Zoe and I. As I have mentioned before, I have moved to a separate apartment and Mark and I are not living together at the moment. This also means that we are not having any holiday together but instead have done separate things, with and without Zoe. I have therefore been on my own with Zoe in Stockholm for most of this week without daycare since Zoe's is not starting her new place before Monday. Mark is traveling with some friends. It has been a lot of fun but also stressful. Stressful because I have a lot of work in terms of papers that are due very soon, both accepted, semi-accepted and brand new papers, but with an energized toddler, work is out of the question; when she finally sleeps at night, I'm so exhausted that I can barely clean the kitchen. But also stressful because when Mark out-of-town, I am very alone here in Stockholm where I have barely made casual friends yet. I admit that much of this is my own fault, I try to socialize but honestly, my Swedish is not fit for girlfriend talk and the English speaking people I have met so far have mainly been stay-at-home wives who have followed their (sometimes Swedish) husband here and I don't feel I have a lot in common with them. I do have a few Swedish colleagues that I speak English with and whom I would consider friends. But they are on holiday this week. So Zoe and I developed a routine for doing toddler-focused activities morning and afternoon, and for me to have coffee and relax during her mid-day nap so I didn't go mad from spending 24/7 with my lovely but quite demanding daughter.

Zoe stamping my ticket at the tram museum
Wednesday for example we went to the Tram Museum where they have a little train the kids (with adults) can ride and I knew she loved it, so I showed up early enough to get early tickets (half an hour into opening hours the next available train times are usually 3 hours in the future. Good luck entertaining kids for that long in a museum). And today we went to the Postal Museum that had a special kids-section open in where she could paint her own postcard, send it off to grandmother (they actually gave us stamps!) and play in a special kids sized postal car. She was a darling all day despite having slept two hours less than normal, perhaps because I spoiled her with two ice creams and a lollypop.

But today was the last day. Tomorrow her dad is back and will take her in the afternoon where I hopefully will be able to finish one of my papers. And then vacation is over.

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