Education for the young Danish royals (100 things #12)

Princess Isabella 6 years
Photo credit: HRH The Crown Princess

Back in February, the news came that Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary had chosen that Princess Isabella would follow in her older brother’s footsteps and attend Tranegårdskolen in Gentofte. As I wrote over at Blog Royale back in May 2011, the decision that Christian should attend that school was not universally applauded.

I expect there has also been some rumbling around Isabella’s attendance – but it seems much more universally acceptable when the second one follows rather than when the first one breaks a barrier  of sorts.

At any rate, I thought it would be interesting to compare the education of these two with the Danish royals who have gone before them.

I think that it was generally assumed that when Prince Christian would start school that he would join his cousins, Princes Nikolai and Felix at Krebs school, a private school in Copenhagen.

After all, Krebs was also the school of Crown Prince Frederik and Prince Joachim. And nobody had batted an eyelid when Nikolai and Felix had followed them there.

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Review: Europe on 5 Wrong Turns a Day: One Man, Eight Countries, One Vintage Travel Guide

Europe on 5 Wrong Turns a Day: One Man, Eight Countries, One Vintage Travel Guide
Europe on 5 Wrong Turns a Day: One Man, Eight Countries, One Vintage Travel Guide by Doug Mack
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is a fun little read. How does the Europe on 5 dollars a day travel guide from way back translate to traveling in Europe today?

Some of us (the author of the book included) have become so accustomed to looking things up on Tripadvisor, blogs, Wikipedia, etc. when we travel – but one of my best finds in Rome came through an old guidebook. (Ice cream. Never underestimate the power of ice cream in Rome in July.)

It is interesting to hear the contrasts between then and now, and how the writer works in the letters from when his mother traveled using the original version of the guide book.

Some of the tips from back then works, and some are miserable failures.

And I can definitely recognize myself in the ennui at the end – sometimes the things you *must* see become too much and it is simply more fun to experience everyday life in the place you are than the tourist side. And other times, it is more fun to be the ultimate tourist.

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Google Reader, again.

So, I’m still partially using GoogleReader and hanging on as long as possible. Wired had a post up on Google’s reasoning behind it, and what they want us to use instead…

The answer is Google Now and Google+… but from what I read about those two – and know from experience with Google+, I am inclined to agree with Richard Dickson who posted the following in the comment section on the article.

“I don’t want to read what Google thinks I want to read. I want to read what I want to read. I used Google Reader as a way to check on all the sites I read without having to bookmark and visit every single one. I kept up with webcomics. And it did all that by me just clicking a button and subscribing, not by having to “teach” it and wading through recommendations I wasn’t really interested in.”

– Richard Dickson

The reason for why I don’t want to go Google+ or GoogleNow is the same reason for why I don’t follow the blogs/webcomics/whatnot on Facebook. Facebook as it is today (as opposed to when I started using it) only selects a small minutiae of what I want to read. That is both from friends I have added and from pages I have liked. They select what they think I want to read, instead of going by the logic that what I have added or liked *is* what I want to read. As a result, I am liking as few things as possible on Facebook, and adding them to an RSS reader instead – so that the things that are only on Facebook might be able to get through.

But I’m trying to get used to feedly. I really am.

I am grateful for…

  • My sisters. They’re much nicer now than they were when we were growing up – and I am so grateful that I have all three of them. They’re truly my best friends – well, except when we’re tired and grumpy and know which buttons to push to annoy each other…
  • Our parents. They believe we can do whatever we put our mind to, and support us. Though there might be discussion around certain things – if they aren’t 100% sure of the path we want to take, if we do decide to go for it – they’re there for us.
  • The lucid moments of my 91 year old grandmother with dementia.
  • My friends. Every one of them, both those I’ve met physically, and those I’ve only known online – for years.
  • My colleagues. I work with the best team of people ever – and the only bad thing about it is that it is mostly virtual meetings.
  • My health.
  • Sunshine.
  • Music
  • Books
  • Pretty flowers everywhere – even though I managed to dry out both my potted sunflowers…
  • Sunny Sundays when the sun is shining and you have a new book by your favourite author to read…

Rhubarb crumble

For years, I searched for the jam I had when I was on a language course in Vichy and staying in a private lodging. My French was not to the point where I could easily translate the fruit names, and my memory in the last four months of high school, was dedicated to remembering stuff for exams, not French-named jams. It was sort of bland in colour, but tart and sweet in taste, and it was perfect on toast for breakfast.

Anyway, I’ve tried several different jams that have looked similar to the one I remember, but all of them have fallen short. Until I tried Bonne Maman’s rhubarb jam. Now, that’s the stuff memories are made of – it was the rhubarb jam.

I found some rhubarb in the shop the other day. I didn’t know what I wanted to do with it, but for the majority of the year it is such a rarity around here that I bought it anyway.


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One of my earliest memories

That I know is a memory and not just something I’ve been told, is picking my grandfather up at the hospital and bringing him home for a visit.

I know it was the summer I turned four in 1987, as I had one sister, we had a blue Volvo station wagon and not the Renault, and he died in January 1988.

My grandfather was in a wheelchair, and I can, sort of, remember how it was standing next to him whilst he was sitting in it.

I remember driving to the back of my grandparents’ house with my Dad and my grandfather. Because of the wheelchair, we couldn’t go through the front, because the house was not wheelchair accessible by any means. So, we stopped in the back, on the parking lot there, went to the back of the Volvo, and got the wheelchair out.

I know from pictures that we sat under an umbrella in the backyard, my sister on grandfather’s lap, and I think I remember that he also went into the house. (I’m not sure if the latter is actually from an earlier memory and if I have mashed them together, or if it is the same time.)

In reality, most of the earliest things I remember is from that summer I turned four, so I guess that is also when I started to become a bit more self-aware and remembered events – or simply the events I remember, this, breaking my arm… are so major I would have remembered them anyway.

What’s your earliest memory?

Making pasta from scratch

I’ve been wanting to try my hand at pasta making for a while. Mostly because the options for different filling in ravioli in Norwegian stores is not very good.

I got a pasta roller, and with the help of the enthusiastic sister, set to work.

We started with the seven-yolk pasta recipe from The Smitten Kitchen. There might have been a slight wonder about how many yolks were needed. (We did notice that the Silver Spoon, the Italian cookbook, only went for two eggs… Might try that next time.)  Also the amount of flour seemed absurdly small compared to the amount of liquid.


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Citizenship of Madeleine’s children (100 things #10)

Barbara D over at the Scandinavian Royals Message board had a question about the citizenship of the future offspring of Chris O’Neill and Princess Madeleine, as their children will be in line to the Swedish throne.

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Quotation Monday #15: Creativity

Creativity is a great motivator because it makes people interested in what they are doing. Creativity gives hope that there can be a worthwhile idea. Creativity gives the possibility of some sort of achievement to everyone. Creativity makes life more fun and more interesting.

Edward de Bono

Royal Guest Lists (100 things #9)

Can someone please explain to me the logic of the courts when they reveal their guest list to royal occasions? There is a mish-mash of languages involved, a miss-mash of titles and in the case of the Swedish court – the guest list (or any information, such as engagement announcements) seems to be leaked to the Swedish main press before the court can make a proper announcement about it themselves.

In the case of today’s wedding – Princess Madeleine to Christopher O’Neill (which I always remember to write with two L’s because of Stargate SG-1). The guest list was released on the wedding website. For cousins of the bride, plus their partners, we have “Mr James Ambler och Mrs Ursula Ambler” but we have “Herr Victor Magnuson och Fröken Frida Bergström”

No consistency in choosing one language. For relatives of the bride’s mother, we have “Fröken Chloé Sommerlath. Fröken Anaïs Sommerlath” but “Miss Helena Christina Sommerlath” and “Miss Vivien Nadine Sommerlath.”

One theory could be the country of residence.

Only, the Swedish court have translated the Danish titles, so it is “Kronprinsessan Mary”/”Prinsessan Marie” and not “Kronprinsesse Mary”/”Prinsesse Marie.” And, Scandinavian royals apart, they’re using English titles for the rest of them.

They have put Princess Benedikte under German royals, which technically is right, but have used Swedish translated title on her, whereas the other royals in that category have had their titles translated to English.

Another theory could be the language the guest understands… but it makes no sense when it is a document revealed to the Swedish press.

The Danish royal court is worse, mixing in French with the Danish and English, as seen in the guest list for Mary and Frederik’s wedding. And using French titles on royals who normally are not adressed by titles in French. Such as “S.A.R le Prince d’Orange” or “S.M. la Reine d’Espagne.”

I really wish they would be consistent. Either have it in the language of the person attending, English or have it in the language the guest list is released to.

30 day abs challenge

Last week I found this image on imgur. 30-day AB challenge.


I thought it sounded interesting – I needed to get some work in on my core muscles and I can definitely do something for 30 days. (Well, as long as it does not include jumping jacks. My knees did not enjoy Jillian Michaels’ 30 day shred.) Currently I’m on day 8 – rest day – and I have to say that the first week have gone surprisingly well.

The second day was hell. It turns out that I am really much more untrained in my core than I thought I was. But the rest have gone okay so far. Going from 35 sit-ups to 40 was a bit of stretch, though. It will be interesting to see how 45 will feel tomorrow.

I think it has gone well because I can do this at home. I don’t have to be at the gym to do it, which takes away a bit of the procrastination factor around it. But I also think that, for the first week, it is not a huge involvement in time needed either. It was less than 5 minutes each day, so not finding the time wasn’t an excuse.

I want to keep up with this for the remaining days.

Norwegian independence day

Given the Norwegian media coverage of the Swedish wedding this weekend, it seems appropriate that today is the anniversary of the Norwegian independence from Sweden.

If we had celebrated this as a national day instead of May 17, there would have been a trifecta of Scandinavian national days in a row. Denmark on June 5, Sweden on June 6 and Norway on June 7.

Instead we celebrate the constitution and liberation from Denmark on May 17.