Monday, January 7, 2013

Happy New Year! (Married-couple-with-a-kid-style)

Our New Year's Eve celebration once involved ballrooms, high heels and open bars. However, since Calvin's arrival and the onset of older age... Jon and I were looking forward to a really nice dinner - lobster and clams - and a opening a bottle of nice Viennese wine.  We thought we might watch a movie to stretch us closer to midnight, watch some fireworks on tv and turn in "early."  We were caught unawares when we started hearing random fireworks going off at random intervals outside our house starting at 4pm (aka complete darkness).  Looking out our back window, we caught glimpses of fireworks going off
across the Baltic.

Instead of a goodnight story for Calvin, we read Lord Tennyson's poem, Ring Out, Wild Bells, a Swedish tradition.  I really like the poem and I think it'll be nice to read each year -- another Swedish tradition that we look forward to incorporating into our lives permanently.

An excerpt:

Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
   The flying cloud, the frosty light;

   The year is dying in the night;

Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,

   Ring, happy bells, across the snow:

   The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind,

   For those that here we see no more,

   Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,

   And ancient forms of party strife;

   Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws 

We read Calvin the poem and then sang Auld Lange Syne to him.  Calvin, surprisingly, really liked the song and started singing along.  I think he even knew more lyrics than Jon. 

After enjoying our delicious dinner of seafood - another Swedish tradition - we turned off the lights and watched a marginally interesting movie and before we knew it, the clock said it was 11:35pm. 

Maine lobsters in Sweden
Woooeee! We made it close enough, so we each got some bubbly drinks and looked out our back window to wait for the main show to begin.  It turns out that Swedes are REALLY into fireworks on NYE.  I thought Americans were fireworks-crazy but we've never seen anything like this.  In Atlanta, we would have to head into the city center to find a nice fireworks display, but we didn't have to leave our house.  Being situated on a hill, we could see fireworks across the Baltic and all down the streets down the hill.

Here is a quick video of our backyard fireworks:

New Year's Resolutions -- to be honest, I didn't really think of any meaningful resolutions to make this year.  I thought about it and everything just seemed good already - maybe we're living life right?? Maybe I'm just unimaginative. I know that there is always something for improvement, but I just couldn't think of anything.  What are your resolutions?

While our New Year's Eve celebration didn't involve sparkly new dresses or consuming massive amounts of champagne and singing Auld Lange Syne while hugging strangers, we had just as much fun (maybe more) and the lack of a hangover the next morning was worth its weight in gold.  We woke up and played "Stomp" in the kitchen with Calvin.  Here's to a new year with new adventures!

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