Dolce far niente

It’s Italian and according to Wiktionary it means “sweet doing nothing” = “Delicious idleness”.

In the movie Eat, Pray, Love its described as the sweetness of doing nothing.

Dorian, having a hard time relaxing

Dorian, having a hard time relaxing

This morning after a walk and the dogs’ breakfast, this “little” puppy have been on speed, doing pretty much everything he’s not supposed to. Very puppy-like, in other words. Sometimes, just like with us humans and especially kids, when a puppy is tired beyond the need of sleep there’s no end to the mischievousness, playing, barking and what have you.

Part of my Dolce far niente - a cup of coffee

Part of my Dolce far niente – a cup of coffee

I’ve been cool about it, there’s no need to do anything as long as the dog and us around him are safe. He’s been chewing on an old basket ball, trying to play with a not-at-all-interested-cat, wrestling with the older dog, barking at… who knows what, wanting to cuddle, almost falling asleep, barking, chewing, wrestling, looking for other things to chew or eat… and finally, after three hours of being active, he was ready to rest. Almost. And then really, sleeping.

Relaxing AND ready to get up and bark

Relaxing AND ready to get up and bark

Why I find this so interesting is that I recognize myself in this behavior. When I need to rest or sleep but keep myself busy with things like a child not wanting to go to bed. As kids we usually don’t want to miss out on anything, and as grown ups… we think we need to do things or be awake and alert because…? Well, we all have our reasons and explanations. Personally I’ve become far better at Dolce far niente lately and love those days or hours. This is the first real day of Dolce far niente since arriving in Sweden almost three weeks ago. It’s wonderful!

See! He relaxes in such a sweet style!

See! He relaxes in such a sweet style!

What I usually say is that animals (when they’re not speed-puppies) are great to help us remember to do what we want/need the most. If a dog/cat/horse needs to rest, they do. Or eat, go pee, yawn, stretch, run, jump, shout… basically whatever.

Dolce far niente

Dolce far niente

Anders? He’s sleeping. And it’s almost noon.

Dolce far niente! // Wivan

Traveling with six kids

Pippi Longstocking is my breakfast company!

Pippi Longstocking is my breakfast company!

Just read the latest post from Leo Babuta on Zen Habits, where he gives tips about traveling with kids. At the moment he and his wife are travelling around Europe for four weeks with all of their six (!) children.

What hits me is that the tips also work for me in life in general, as well as tips for traveling with grown ups.

Democratic planning
Have them take responsibilities
Pack light
Take turns being leaders
Let them take care of their own stuff
Give them a spirit of adventure
Be flexible
Don’t rush
Realize they get frustrated too

Drop expectations
Remind ourselves to be grateful

See, this is good for all of us to remember, a way to approach all different situations, with or without six kids and at home or during travels.

Thanks Leo, you are inspiring and well formulated and I also love the way you approach the challenges you have during travels; eating, exercise and work and look forward to reading how it all went.

// Wivan

Picture update

The midsummer pole broke...

The midsummer pole broke…

Last Friday we celebrated Midsummer Eve here in Sweden, a tradition that many people like and it’s even a national holiday.

The Midsummer pole after the re-set

The Midsummer pole after the re-set

We spent the Midsummer weekend with parts of our family at Wivan’s mom and extra dad’s place on the island Aspö outside the city of Karlskrona.

Our "Flores pannacotta"

Our “Flores pannacotta with berries”

A rainy ride on the ferry to Aspö

A rainy ride on the ferry to Aspö

The nights are bright and long in the summer in the northern parts of Europe. Even though we’re in southern Sweden it’s only a few hours that are dark during the nights.

The governor's recidence in Karlskrona, at 9pm

The governor’s recidence in Karlskrona, at 9pm

Afternoon walk

Afternoon walk

It was a bit funny on Midsummer day, when we took a walk and met so many others out walking – like it usually is also on Christmas day and New Year’s day.

One of many beautiful views

One of many beautiful views

Fresh strawberries, they're so tasty!

Fresh strawberries, they’re so tasty!

On a boat ride... Wivan caught in the life west and could hardly move

On a boat ride… Wivan caught in the life west and could hardly move

Anders on the boat - without getting sea sick!

Anders on the boat – without getting sea sick!

New again

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Today we’ve moved in with these two dogs, and two cats while their owners are away. It’s our first house sit in Sweden since we became “professional house sitters” last November.

The furry one, Dorian, is an eight month old puppy and he’s big. Luckily he’s very gentle when walking on a lead and is good at relaxing indoors (when not chewing on things…).
Simba is a older dobberman who loves to cuddle and check out what happens in the kitchen.

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This is a house close to where Anders works, and we’re staying for a week. After a couple of weeks with lots of people around, it feels good to have a week with just the two of us and the pets.

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Dorian chasing a fly...

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Poppy flowers

Together again!

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Sunny evening walk

Yesterday we got back together after three weeks apart.

We met at Lund central station, the very same place we met for our first irl meeting almost exactly 17 years ago.

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Wivan took the train from Södertälje

After Wivan’s five hour train ride Anders picked her up on the motorcycle, with the big backpack and all. It was a nice ride out to the place we get to stay at friends’ outside Lund.

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Together

It’s really nice to be back together, after weeks of impressions and experiences apart.

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We got our pillows back!

🙂
Anders and Wivan