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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Stitchy Update and Strange Candy...

The last couple of evenings I have been recovering from my cold, getting used to being back home, and relaxing after some sweaty hours in the office trying to catch back up.  What is amazing is that I have actually had the energy to stitch a bit in the evenings.
Tuesday night, both the Richmond and the DT SAL came back out from the stitch room!  Last night, Pink came over and, instead of going for pedicures which was the initial plan, we went to the local coffee house and brought our stitching along.  We spent a few minutes stitching and several hours venting work related issues.  We have very different work situations (type of work, type of companies, office size, pretty much everything is different), so it is real interesting to hear what kind of problems Pink runs into compared to the ones I struggle with.  Anyway, after a large coffee, a biscotti that was far too soft, and some additional stitching time on the living-room couch after the visit was over, I can show you the following - voilà:
This is the "first third of the 8th part" of Drawn Thread's Sampler of Stitches!  We are getting very close to the finish on this one!  Out of the original 5 stitchers, we are only three stubborn ones left! 
If you'd like to celebrate with me, click on the video below and feel free to belt along to It's the Final Countdown with Europe, which, if you didn't already know it, was a Swedish synth rock group in the 80's!  (As a Swede I'd rather claim Europe than Ace of Base any day, by the way.  I usually say that AoB was Norwegian and hope that I can get away with it.  DH thinks that it is hilarious.....).

So, speaking on weird things from Sweden (smooth segue, ey?), did you know that Swedes love salty liquorice?  We do!  As a matter of fact, we love liquorice so much that we have an entire store in Stockholm devoted to it; Lakritsroten on the large central avenue Sveavägen.  I just learned about this wonder of a shop from my Littlest Sister, so of course I had to stop by to see if it was as amazing as she told me it was.  It is!
The store is divided into sections; one area contains salty liquorice (yum!), another displays the sweet stuff,  and one section is devoted to the luxury type (Finnish and Australian).  There is also a corner with gift bags and baskets, a section with the "hot" salty hard candy, an area with more unusual delicacies such as chocolate covered liquorice (this is fabulous stuff!!), and so on.
Here you can see just how large this specialty store actually is.  (Note DH's less than thrilled expression in the window below....)
DH and I walked through the better part of Stockholm to get there and were lucky enough to make it in to the store about 7 minutes before closing.  I did a lot of damage in those meager minutes...
Since we are speaking about salty liquorice, I would also like to share that the Swedish Swedish Fish comes in salty liquorice taste back home (scroll down the page here).  This is "the real fish" in my book; the "black fish" bag is the one I select over the sad fruit flavored fish any day.  Both types can be purchased at Meijer's international food isle or at IKEA (where else?).

Since I am writing about "black fish", I have to share a story.  When I first started working at my current company, I had a very nice and very proper boss.  The first year I had enough vacation to fly home on, I went back to spend it with my family in Sweden.  Of course I had to bring some Swedish goodies back.  Among other things I brought home - you guessed it -a bag of "black fish". 
I was eating some at work one day and all of the sudden I got called over to my boss' office.  I ran over quickly and forgot to let go of the bag.  My boss looks at the bag with big eyes and asks what in the world I am eating.  I explain and naturally offer him a piece or two.  He takes one, very sceptically, and tells me wearily that he won't try it until later in the day.
The next day we run into each other in one of the corridors and I ask him what he thought of the Swedish candy.  He laughs and goes completely red and says: " I am glad that I closed the office before I tried it; I had to spit it out in my garbage can!".  Oh boy!  I would have loved to see that one!
I guess that the moral of the story is that taste is in a big part acquired.  That is why (some of) us Swedes also eat surströmming, sill, and lutfisk... (personally, I only eat sill out of the three).  If you hadn't had enough yet, here is some additional reading about Swedish delicacies.  Bon appetit!

Finally - what is better after coming home from travels than running out to the garden to look at everything that has happened since the last stroll around?  It almost looks like everything exploded into greenery while we were gone.  I do believe that we will lose both our Magnolia trees in the back yard (probably due to the constant rain), but other than that, everything looks wonderful.  (Yep, the lawn "exploded" as well, please ignore that....  ;-))
Love the Bleeding Hearts!  I may have to get some more of those...

Well, time to say "Happy Stitching" and get back to work...
Take care and talk with you in a bit!


  1. I'd love to try a 'piece' of salty licorice. I actually just bought a small bag of All Sorts licorice yesterday, but it is sooo sweet. Who knew a whole store could be devoted to licorice??? Yes, we have an exploded lawn (2.6 acres) also. Sigh.

  2. Love your stitchy piece..... what is it?

    The Final Countdown... ahahahahaha, I LOVE that song... I belt it out all the time. Hehehe.

    Love liquorice too... although I don't know about the salty ones... :S