Something Swedish

Winter in Sweden is SVÅR!


“Difficult,” that is. Other words that can be used to describe winter in Sweden:

Mörk. Lång. Kall. Deprimerande. Dark. Long. Cold. Depressing.

It’s easy to focus on these things, but it’s important not to.

The nice thing is that we, as humans, adapt and adjust – and over the past few years I can report that I’ve gotten used to the short days and long, dark winter nights…but that doesn’t mean I’m not ecstatic every time Spring (vår) comes along!

Even in the middle of February- Sitting outside no matter the temperature, just because it’s sunny:

lunchdejt i solen “Lunch date in the sun with vitamin D enrichment”

Being deceived by a few warm or sunny days, because it IS still only February and I got waay ahead of myself (rookie mistake):


But finally, at long last it is here – at least here in Halmstad! Unlike in the U.S. there is no set date for Spring, but a meteorological standard of 7 days above freezing in a row. Of course it’s always more fun to look for other tell -tale signs, like:

Noticeably longer days: photo(15)

Seeing people sitting around, for no reason other than to soak in the sun…and then becoming one of those people, kind of like these lemurs:

Spotting the year’s first flowers in bloom (last week):



Hearing the ice cream truck for the first time (which was today for me – they sound like this):

Eating your first ice cream of the year …with gloves and a scarf on (this is a photo from almost exactly 3 years ago, to the day):

2013-04-17 17.12.50

Enjoying the premier of  uteservering [out door seating] (last week):


And my personal favorite project this year, making the balcony ready for summer!IMG_20160404_190842

What do you do to enjoy the spring weather? How was your first Winter in Sweden?


14 thoughts on “Winter in Sweden is SVÅR!

  1. I enjoy a nice and fresh bikeride to celebrate the spring!

  2. Actually, I adapted easier than Mariette WHO FREAKING GREW UP HERE! Maybe it was because everything was new to me but det var inte svår för mig. Now, I have heard the ice cream truck somewhere around even during winter but I’ve never actually see it. Looking forward to a real nice summer!

    • That’s great 🙂 I think my first winter was easier than my second or third because I was just so excited and curious and everything was new – I always found something to do. For me it’s a matter of staying busy!

  3. I get excited when they put out the tables and chairs in the square in Linkoping! Our first winter here (made it through the 4th this year) was quite rough. I hate the short, dark days but they’re doable due to the beautiful Christmas lights. It’s important to get outside too with plenty of reflective items! 🙂

  4. Just like you while visiting Sweden last month I took every opportunity no matter the temperature to enjoy sitting in the sun.

  5. The closest I get to snow in this part of California, is when I open my freezer.

  6. I think you’re absolutely right about expats having a unique perspective. I’ve been in Sweden almost three years now and living in this society, adapting to it, learning how to navigate it (because it is very different from the US), has given me a point of view I can’t quite explain to others who do not live abroad. I definitely see (and reap) the benefits of the social welfare system here, but I also see where the Swedish system goes wrong too. It’s given me a new outlook on American attitudes about things like healthcare, parental leave, the work week, etc.

    Registering to vote while abroad was something I made a priority last year after getting married. However, how you vote depends on your state of residence. I maintain an address (my parents) in California (my home state) for normal things like getting mail, buying things, etc, but California has made it relatively easy to vote from abroad. They literally sent me a PDF of the ballot that’s due June 7th, so I’m filling it out today and sending it off. I could just go to a polling station in Göteborg but it was really important to me that I vote in the primaries this election cycle so I made the effort to vote from abroad.

    I’m ready for it to be spring already! It’s been consistently sunny up here in Bohuslän, with longer days, and then out of nowhere yesterday I had little baby hail pellets pinging my windows!

    • Hey Diandra! Thank you for taking the time to write – sorry for the terrible response time! Moving abroad certainly opens up a whole new perspective which is just about impossible to explain to people who haven’t experienced it. I’m happy to hear you are an active voter, despite the distance. Some places make it a lot easier than others, for sure. In general though, it can be confusing which is a shame. I hope you are enjoying the Swedish summer now – it’s been beautiful here in Halmstad!

  7. You have such a nice blog! Warm greetings from Montreal, Canada. Winters here can be very cold, depressing and long, so I fully comprehend.

  8. Hi,
    Your blog is magnificently beautiful and helpful. I moved recently to Sweden and during my SFI studies i found it and it gave me a lot of help and motivation to keep ongoing.
    Now i just started SAS grund på distans and i have 2 questions regarding that.
    1-studieplanering: i finished SFI D with B grade so what in your opinion is the best plan to take mentioning that i am currently unemployed and not registered in any other courses.
    2-What do you think after your experience is the best way to study.

    Thank you in advance and hopefully if you have time i can get an answer from you.

    • Hi Tony! I’m so happy you’ve found the blog helpful, sorry for the delay in response. Personally, I find the most effective way to study is by going to the classes – I think that a huge part of learning the language is interacting with the teacher and other students, which is hard to do when studying from a distance. That is just a preference though, everyone works differently! Keep going with the Swedish, it’s the best way to get a job down the line and it’s something to do while being unemployed – so it’s perfect! I really enjoyed taking Samhällskunskåp (civics) to learn about how things work in Sweden and also as a way to USE the Swedish, instead of just studying the actual language. Hope that helps! Lycka till!!

  9. Came upon your site by accident. You’ve been here a while, but for what it is worth: Welcome to Sweden. Skål 🙂

  10. I just discovered your blog today and I’m sad you’re not writing here anymore. 🙂 I’m going to go back through your archives and read more!

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