The November Blues

Friday 7 November 2014

November in Stavanger is difficult.  Day in and day out we deal with rain and wind.  The winter darkness is taking over, daylight savings time appearing to make it worse.  I look at the calendar and simultaneously think, 'how is it November' and 'it's only November 7th?'  These days the sun is setting at 16:30 and there are many times I feel like I've just gotten myself dressed and fed and it's nearly dark outside.

It can be quite easy to wallow in the November blues but in an effort to keep myself above water, here are some things making me smile these days:

+The opening of a Vinmonopolet (Norwegian liquor store) in our neighbourhood.  Alcohol is state run here and aside from beer in the grocery store, all booze must be bought via the Vinmonopolet.  Now we're never more than a 5 minute walk away.  (As long as it's between 10:00 and 18:00 on weekdays and 10:00 and 15:00 Saturdays.  Norway.)

+This post on Jess' blog on British English.

+Jasper learning to smile socially (as opposed to random upturns of the lips that are completely unintentional.)  I have to work really hard for them but the high pitched voice and exaggerated smile are completely worth it.

+My daily latte - taken with a shot of vanilla. The crappy weather seems to make it taste that much better.

+UnblockUs for giving me an American IP address and Hulu for keeping me up to date on Fall TV - essential with all the time I'm sitting around with an infant on top of me.

+Jimmy Fallon has been nailing it lately.  The Wheel of Impressions with Kevin Spacey, Daniel Radcliffe Rapping, Andy Samberg's Facebook Account, Wheel of Musical Impressions with Adam Levine --- pure gold.

+The rare days where blue skies (or grey) grace us and taking long walks with Jasper.  Fresh air does the body and the baby good.

+All the snail mail we've been getting lately.  Baby gifts and cards are showing up regularly and it fills my heart with happiness.

+WhatsApp for the ease of chatting and sending photos to friends and family back home and for simple conversations with the ones I love.

+Perusing the photos we had done when Jasper was one week old.  I can't believe how tiny and new he was and I love that we captured a few low key moments as a new family of three.  (Thanks Desiree.)

What's making you smile these days?

 Have a lovely weekend!

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