Taking care of two young boys, keeping my wife happy, and doing it all in a foreign land; I am an American “Hemmapappa” (stay-at-home dad ) in Sweden. The family has recently said good-bye to hot and steamy Asia (Burma to be specific) and have landed in my dream winter wonderland of Sweden.
The two primary themes for this blog will be living abroad & parenting.
One year later…I now transitioning into a new career, the boys are at dagis, and I am still doing my best to keep the wife happy. And the blog is really more about life in small town Sweden.
My husband is back to work and I’ve taken over his blog. (Insert evil laugh here.)
The topics are still about parenting, living abroad, and traveling with kids. This time our focus will be Macedonia, the Balkans, and Europe.
19 thoughts on “About”
But *why* are you in Sweden? Do you mention that elsewhere?
One primary factor for coming to Sweden was for the cold weather and snow. After 5 years in Burma, I needed to get some ice back in my veins.
What does your wife do? In other words, are you guys working in Sweden at all? Is she Swedish? It doesn’t sound like she’s Swedish. You must be fairly close by where I’m living right now, since you’re going to some of the same places I go to when I’m here, like Kalmar and Huseby? I can get you a Swedish explanation of why you need the TV license, btw, but they do this in the UK and countries where they make a profit off selling licenses. In fact, there are rules about how if you’re not making enough money, you’re not ‘allowed’ to have a TV, although how they know you have a TV, I don’t know. Big brother. So unpleasant.
My wife is a teacher and I am the trailing spouse on this adventure. We are in Almhult and quite enjoying the experience. Thanks for the insight into the TV License.
Have you been in Sweden long enough to experience the glory that is Eurovision?
If not, be prepared for the most bizarre show you’ve ever seen as Sweden are hosting it in May.
Till now, I had not heard of it. Malmo is only 1.5hrs away by train…hmmm. Thanks for the heads up.
I told you so.
According to a real Swede, they pay 500 krona every third month so they don’t have to get advertising on two of their channels. You can sign up for TV and not pay the license, but there are TV license guys who literally come around to find out if you haven’t paid the license. They scan your apartment (with a special tool, I am told, although that just sounds weird) and find out if you’re using TV. Basically, it sounds (in pidgeon translation, sigh, so difficult) like they get PBS-type broadcasting that they pay for through the TV license. If you don’t pay the TV license, you can still watch 12 basic channels. It just sounds like they’re charging you the way they would in the States if you had cable exclusively. Some houses have TV antenna, and they get channels they don’t have to pay for. So you’re not paying to have the television itself, you’re paying for advertising-free TV. Okay, after this conversation with the Swede, I am exhausted. I hope this doesn’t seem like the gibberish it seems like to me. Also, you might benefit from looking at http://www.thelocal.se/ (The Local) which is Swedish news in English, plus they have forums and local boards and stuff that makes it seem less like a foreign country on another planet. Best wishes. I hope all of this helps.
Oh, btw, the Swede says “Ah, Almhult, the mecca for IKEA.” IKEA is a rather sore subject here in Småland, the home of its original owner.
Allison – I’m curious, why is Ikea a sore subject?
Because the Swede’s father and mother had a contentious relationship and somehow, Ikea became part of that ongoing argument. When people are either incompatible or just generally mad at each other, they’ll find something (or anything) to argue about.
Hi hemmapapa… I think it is brilliant what you do, as I did it myself many years back in 94… our son was just born and my wife had the urge to get promoted with a job in Sweden. I loved it… the country and the people are something else, very inviting and non-confrontational… unlike the Gemans… (I am one myself – so I am allowed to say so… ). I stayed off work for some 8 months and it was the best time of my live – seeing my son grow up… everyday! But you know what they say… it is easier to go to work. So enjoy your time and yes Almhult is the mecca for IKEA, my friend Reine works there…
Thanks!! I have definitely been enjoying the country and spending time with my boys…but I also now understand that it is much easier to go to work (if Reine can get me a job let me know). Thanks for following.
Well Reines field of expertise is ASP and the likes… he’s got nothing to do with HR…
are your kids going to the international kindergarten yet? It is a great time to see them grow, but it is definitely easier to go to work… so have tons of fun and let’s keep in touch…
Hej! I found your blog by Googling dagis. It’s great to see another American here 🙂 I’m a SAHM with a little one that just turned 1 and debating on when to start her. I’m looking forward to browsing your blog. BTW, as for the TV permit thing, a lot of younger Swedes flat out refuse to pay for it. They just tell the inspector they don’t have one. It’s an antiqued tax from way back in the day. But resently, they reinterpreted the TV law to include tablets — so it seems there’s just no way to get out of it! I’m not sure when they’re going to enforce it though.
Glad that you found it useful. From what I can tell, it seems that most Swedes put there kids into dagis between 12 -18 months. In an ideal world, that seemed quite early for my wife and I. We have always planned to give both of our boys a full two years of stay-at-home parent attention…however, we did start M part-time at 15 months. With that, he LOVES it and it seems to be doing great things for his socialization.
Hello! We are moving to Almhult this summer and are looking forward to exploring Sweden. Your blog is an excellent resource – thanks!
Hi, maybe I missed it…but I am very curious towhy is your focus Macedonia?thanks!
Sorry for the VERY late reply. My family is currently living in Macedonia, so that is our current focus. (I just need to remember to write more often.)