Posts in sweden

In 2016, during the summer months, I moved back home to Sweden temporarily. My plan was to finish my Masters degree at home, get a job, relax with my family and take care of some health issues of mine. I relaxed with my family a little bit, but apart from that everything else sort of fell apart. Life happens and what not. I made this video for school, but ended up never using it. The idea was to film the moments that didn't really mean anything; just everyday moments without any commentary really. My favourite kind of videos? Anyway. Looking back at it now, it's one of the best things I've ever done? Only because watching it now gives me so much joy. I know exactly how it felt like being there, in Sweden, during summer 2016. The clips showcase it so clearly to me. Of course you can't fit a whole summer in a 3 minute clip. Of course I filmed when I saw beauty in everyday life and not just clips of me watching tv or me crying or me wasting my day not doing summer:y things. I want/need to make more films like this. Because it's all in those boring details. It's ALL in there. 

Homesick: Corners Of The World We Long To Return To

Weddings. Funerals. End of the school year celebrations. This church has played such a central part of my life.

When I was younger I swore to get away, to escape this hole of a town. When I was even younger than that, I thought that the whole world existed of only this; of the lake and the surrounding valleys. That if you climbed up over the hill, you'd fall over into the abyss of space. This was it; this was where life happened. Now I'm of a different opinion, again. I lived away for many years, and every time I return for a visit it's harder to leave. 

I swore to never marry or to celebrate anything in that church. Now the sight of the grand white building makes my heart sing of longing. Not for marriage, but for life here. It's so cliche; to leave a place despising it because you're young and you want more for life, only to later in life wanting to go back. To find beauty in the old, in the familiar. To realize that you've explored so many corners of the world, except your own. 


I've seen many churches, but nothing compares to the lighthouse-like church in my hometown. Calling its men and women back from the waves and valleys. Someday I will return, most likely in the near future. Perhaps I won't settle down right here, perhaps I'll find my own little corner. But it will be in close proximity of life here, so that my future children can celebrate this place just as I did growing up. When life is hard living in other places in the world, I consider myself so lucky to have this place to always return to. 

Big Furry Dinosaurs: A -20°C Walk

Writing this at a Starbucks in Vancouver makes me miss home (+ my sister) so-o much. On this day, Ida had a couple of hours off school and we decided to go down to Mollie to give her a good ol' walk in the cold (-20) but sunny weather, seeing as if we would've waited till the dark, it would've been just to cold for the poor fur baby. 

Arriving at the horse yard before everyone else, I introduced myself to the "locals". Horses are just simply incredible creatures. What even are they? Big furry dinosaurs. There's nothing that can make me cry as much as a movie featuring a horse. I guess it's because it's harder to read a horse? You can easily tell if a dog is excited, anxious, and all the feelings in between. It's so easy to tell if a dog likes you or not. But a horse? How do you know? 

I was never a horse person myself. I tried to be, but failed. To be honest, I was 1) too sensitive and 2) I always thought I was too big? What nonsense. Thanks society for that one. Anyway. There's nothing that impress me as much as young girls with their horses. There's nothing they can't do? Having a sister who's broken every bone in her body (not true, but enough bones anyway!) from riding and jumping, I see how much it has affected her self image. She's bold, brave, caring and smart. Yard smart > street smart any day!  


Poor Mollie; being imported from Ireland this is her first proper winter with snow. And now we're making her go over fields instead of on the roads? So she's knee-deep in this icy snow? On top of that, going up the hill over the fields an elk RAN out from the field onto the road we were on. Mollie probably thought it was the weirdest looking horse she'd ever seen. The rest of the walk she spent looking like this, trying to spot another one:


Snacks, anyone? Ida has trained Mollie to "kiss" her now, which Mollie enthusiastically does only cause she knows there's a snack at the end of a trick. So again, does she actually like the kissing? Does she understand the sharing of affection? Who knows! It's cute either way. 


Is there anything nicer than having your hair + eyelashes + (let's be real) nose hair frozen from walking outside? Probably! But it's definitely up there! Mollie was so happy to be back from her walk, she kept rolling around in her paddock and grinning to us. I say grin, but then again, who knows? Haha, I love horses. I just hope they genuinly love us back.  

daily, winter, swedenEmma Carlsson
For The Wi(n)dows In Paradise

Starting this post and going through these pictures, I had Sufjan Steven's song "For the Widows in Paradise" stuck on my mind. Not too proud to admit, I thought the title was For the Windows in Paradise and not Widows. Guess I have to go back to some old Spotify playlist and re-listen to the song / perhaps read the lyrics this time! 


Anyway. The windows in paradise, aka where I grew up. Knowing I was about to leave Sweden (again), I documented some of my favorite views; the ones visible to me from my childhood homes. I say homes, plural, because as a kid to divorced parents you always end up having more than one home. Probably led to me now not knowing where home is, really - but more on that some other day. 

Dad lives where he works: in a house built by his grandfather who owned the land. The house stands on a hill overlooking his workplace; a field where he builds his timber houses. Around the area he has piles of saw dust, a tractor barn, some smaller houses with tools and equipment. You can also see my dad's uncle's house and land with more smaller work-huts. My dad's family is known for excelling in wood work, building traditional Swedish timber houses and old fashioned wood furniture.  


One of my favorite things at dad's house is the amount of plants he lovingly care for. Grandma often comes in, unannounced, to care for the plants too. Needless to say they're in top-shape. My absolute favorite thing is his porch, built by dad himself a couple of summers ago. The porch overlooks the forest and his workplace. In the summer you can hear the big events from the tourist small town a couple of kilometers away (mostly from the horse events). 


Being attached to the forest on one side, dad's garden is filled with wildlife. During winter you can spot loads of deer and elk tracks in the snow. From this view alone, I've spotted elks eating away on the salt stones we've put out for them. Our family also regurlarly feeds the deer as well. 


The three last pictures from dad's house is the view from "my" window (guest room / me and my brother's room). Spotted are the kennels where dad keeps his Alaskan Malamute, a garage, and another workshop hall with bigger wood work machinery. I associate the workshop house so much with my great granddad who used to spend so much time in there, carving away wooden treasures. 

I know these pictures might not mean much to anyone else, but I love the idea of saving a moment in time that is so familiar to me at this stage in my life. Who knows what I'll remember in the future; I'll be glad of all the documentation of all the everyday stuff that makes my heart happy on a day-to-day basis. 


Throwing in two pics from my mom's house! Of the most documented bay of them all (at least by my family): bride bay (Brudviken, in Swedish)! First picture is from one of our kitchen windows, second picture is of the panorama window in our living room. Imagine having a giant painting in your living room that changes with the seasons? Words cannot express how much I love this place. Therefore I'm gonna stop myself before I give it a shot! 

sweden, winterEmma Carlsson
Sunset In Bridebay

Driving slowly in no traffic is my favourite pastime. I have no need or desire to drive full speed, I'm not going anywhere in that kind of a rush. I like to take my time, to fully appreciate my surroundings. I also like to be able to stop when needed to devour Mother Nature™ when she offers a full plate of goodness. 

I can't tell you how many times I've stopped at the beginning of our bay, by the pier, to simply S O A K in the views. There are colours next to Siljan (Sweden) that you can only see here, uniquely attached to the landscape. Warm pinks and blues. On this day the fog had laid itself down over the tiny villages, the temperatures were creeping further and further down. We're talking -20 celcius. It's time for Siljan to go to bed, to finally put a heavy blanket over her and rest for a while. I managed to catch this changing moment as I stopped by the pier. 

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At first glance, the sun was not visible. The fog was running along the surface, coming in fast over the lake. All you could see was the dirty peach colour that suggested that the sun was setting on the other side. As I stood out on the pier, I could hear clearly how the cold fog created ice crystals, as to tuck in the water for its rest. It was magical? I don't know how to describe it. This is what it's like to be in the presence of The Creature whatever and/or whoever you believe that to be! 

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Soon afterwards, she appeared. The golden burning ball we live and die under. What a beaut, what an astonishing moment in time at a place that most people, if they had driven faster, would've simply passed. Makes you think how many moments you're missing by rushing with your mind clogged up with nonsense. Presence huh, what a thing. 

winter, sweden, natureEmma Carlsson