Monday, June 21, 2010

Summer Solstice

We are far enough north that the sunlight never fades from the sky on this longest day of the year. There is a brief twilight between 11 and 2.

This is as dark as it will get
Reveling in the glory of summer is deeply a part of the Swedish psyche. The power of the sun is so palpable here, and it's season so brief. The Swedish flag, with it's yellow cross on a blue background, looks like a sunny summer day. Solstice is celebrated in Sweden with as much gusto as Christmas is in other parts of the world.

Midsommar will officially be observed on Saturday June 26th. We will be celebrating all week by helping decorate and raise maypoles, and then dance around them, all over Dalarna from Thursday on- in this village, at the town gathering place, and at the cultural museum.

But we still have plenty to celebrate this solstice day. We secretly made preparations for a family birthday party to honor the latest of our family to arrive in Sweden, AS, who turns 30 today. We are staying on her mom's family farm, which has been in her family for generations. AS spent all of her childhood summers here.

In Sweden, you start the birthday festivities by serenading the birthday person in bed. The whole lot of us sang AS awake, and brought coffee and sweet buns for all. As a little birthday gift to her, I will NOT post a picture of her in her PJs, all sleepy, being sung to by her whole family.

Then we picked wild flowers to make wreathes
The Party
It looks like the weather is going to be nice all week!
My girl and the Birthday Girl
Swedish Birthday Cake- Strawberries and Whipped Cream on White Cake layers with Jam.
The farmhouse we are staying in


Mama Bird said...

Oh mama, this all sounds divine. I'm imagining you and your beauties dancing around those May poles, wreathed in blossoms. And I just love the Swedish idea of being woken with coffee & sweet buns in bed on your birthday Dreaming of Sweden...

AS said...

Thank you for the kindness of not posting that! :) And thank you for a wonderful birthday!

Andy said...

Wonderful celebrations, Heidi! I'm so thrilled you are getting to experience all this wonderment! Enjoy enjoy enjoy! And thanks for the great snaps and beautiful words, they do make it more understandable!