Saturday, July 18, 2015

Off Screen Vacation with Kids, is it Possible?

 Yes, it's possible. It's totally possible, and I strongly recommend it. My kids (age 7 and 11)  just spent almost two weeks of summer holiday without any screen access at all. They didn't miss it, and neither did I.
No ipad, no smart phone, no laptop, no TV, no game console. This includes the two 4-hour flights, which was with an airline with no entertainment system and several 1-2-hour car rides. No blaring sound, annoying beeps or flickering images.

How did it go? You might ask. How did you manage? How were the flights? The mornings? The car rides? Did everybody survive? How is it possible to enjoy a vacation without the option of putting your kids in front of a screen?

Well, first of all, when you travel in a new country,  there are many things to discover. Sights to see, food to taste, language to learn, music to listen to, and like most travelers, we explored cities, restaurants, beaches, water... And whenever there was down-time, for instance in the plane, in the car, or in the rented house at night or in the mornings, the kids would read books, play old fashion games with dice or cards or make pictures with pencils on paper.
Yes, it is still possible.
It really is.
Pencils and paper.
They would typically wake up before the rest of us, and when I got out of bed, the living room was littered with books, drawings, crayons, paper planes, dice and playing cards.  And, at night they read in bed before going to sleep. Like kids used to in the old days. Like I still do.

It was only after the holidays it dawned upon me, this off-screen thing. It was not really planned. It just happened. Except for my daughter's camera, we didn't bring anything electronic for them. And they had lots of fun. There was never a "I'm bored" moment. Really, never!

And I think, by constantly having the option of being stuck in front of a screen,  we rob our kids of their creativity, their imagination, their ability to play, make believe and above else: To be in the moment. Kids are by nature curious and inventive. Let them be kids. Let them experience, use their senses and imagination, be hands-on and build habits that they will enjoy forever.

Try it! 

(I admit, the 16-year-old  did bring his smartphone, but we had no wi-fi access, so he ended up picking up a book too. :-))

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Cat in Suitcase

Every time I pack suitcases, he does this, hoping I won't notice...

Hver gang jeg pakker kofferter, gjør han dette, i håp om at jeg ikke oppdager ham...

Saturday, June 20, 2015


Wildflowers. They're everywhere right now. In Norway. In June. Picture taken last weekend, by the lake, when I went for a walk with my two youngest kids and the neighbor's dog. 

Thursday, June 18, 2015

My little Hero

Ingrid, my godchild, is a trooper. 
She had a rough start in life, and at 9 1/2 months she has already had three major surgeries, but she has fought back and is so happy, funny and full of life.
Constantly smiling, communicating and playing. Right now she is working on figuring out how to get moving, since there is so much out there she wants to reach. A whole world!
Lucky me who get to know her, to follow her on her journey.

Big smiles, while playing on the carpet or in her mom's arms.

Ingrid, fadderbarnet mitt, er en helt.
Hun fikk en tøff start i livet, og 9 1/2 måned gammel har hun allerede hatt tre store operasjoner, men det skulle man ikke tro, for hun er alltid så glad, morsom og full av liv.
Smiler, kommuniserer og leker. Akkurat nå jobber hun med å finne ut hvordan hun kan komme seg framover, for det er jo så mye der ute som hun vil ha tak i. En hel verden!
Heldige meg som får kjenne henne, som får følge henne på reisen.


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Exotic Northern Norway

Flying out of Tromsø this afternoon, heading for Svalbard. 
What an amazing country I live in! Snow covered mountains stretching up from the clear, blue sea towards a beautiful sunny sky. 

Monday, May 25, 2015

My "russ" daughter! / Russejenta mi!

My eldest baby, she has had her last high school (I.B.) exam. 
University next... 
In Norway the high school graduates celebrate for several weeks in May, and everything culminates on the 17th, Norway's Consitution day.

Den eldste babyen min som russ!
Hun hatt sin siste vgs (IB)-eksamen. 
Neste kapittel: Universitetet.

With her good friend. Now they go separate ways.