My new readers

I seem to have attracted some new readers.

They are faceless, of course,

But not shy about telling the world exactly what they think!

Like this…

Only one question remains: how did they know I was slightly mad?

Animals – on ice

A while ago, back in March, I seized the chance to see some exotic and unusual creatures in a cold climate…

First off were some joyful creatures from warm countries. They didn’t have any difficulty adapting to the icy conditions over here. Indeed, they seemed to thrive in the cold!

Gloria (the hippo) and Marty (the zebra)

Others were born on the ice – and graced us with their orange synchronized dancing..

And then, just when we thought we’d seen the best, magical winged creatures flittered and fluttered about, making proud parental hearts burst with pride.

If we can’t go to Madagascar, then the next best thing is to bring Madagascar to us!

For more exotic creatures, please visit: Camera Critters!

Of bad puns and posts

Post number 400 in about 20 months…

So, I thought I’d make it a wheely good one!

Have my bad puns tire-d you out yet?

Feel free to celebrate with me and add your own bad jokes…

The sad ballad of the separated lovers

Her heart was torn in two…

Someone had separated her from her one true love.

She gazed out of the window and longed

… and longed…

… and longed.

Thinking only of his return.



When, oh when, would they be re-united?

Free to dance and whirl together

In love?

Little did she know that it might take a while…


Anklebiter # 1: Mama, you know what? I’m paranoid.

Brief pause while I wonder how to respond.

Anklebiter # 1: I know what paranoid means.


Me: Really? What?

Anklebiter: Well, it’s when you’re really annoyed with your parents.


Anklebiter: I’m paranoid quite a lot.

Does that mean I’m going to be kiddanoid when they’re teenagers then?

Contemplating your navel

As a language expert afficionado, you get asked all sorts of odd questions.

My editor wrote to ask me a vital question: What do we call that stuff that collects in the filter of a clothes dryer? I immediately told her the exact scientific word: fluff.

She then mailed me back and wanted to know what you call the stuff that collects in your belly button.

I know, I know… my day is filled with tasks of startling importance!

Naturally, I told her that we call this stuff ‘belly button fluff’, but then decided to dazzle her with the extent of my knowledge and let her know that the real term for these kind of ‘fluffs’ is, in fact, lint.

Yes – you get pocket lint, clothes dryer lint and – wait for it – navel lint!

I’ll wait while you applaud me for making your day.

Now, navel lint is truly fascinating to many, it seems. In fact, a Dr. Karl Kruszelniki from Australia even went as far as to delve into the in and outs (pun intended) of belly button fluff. He was awarded an Ig Nobel Prize in 2002 for ‘achievements that cannot or should not be repeated’.

Thanks Wikipedia for this disturbing image!

This stuff defies the laws of gravity and – contrary to popular belief – it doesn’t migrate downwards from your armpits but upwards from your underwear.

One thing I wonder though is this: if your belly button sticks out does that mean you collect less fluff than if you’re an ‘innie’ and your belly button is sunk into your tummy?

I’ll just tiptoe away now and leave you to contemplate your navel – or maybe even someone else’s!

What kind of pot are you on?

And now… just in time for the start of a new school term … and as light relief amongst all the boring lovely snow photos I keep on posting…

May I present the teapot that performs complicated calculations while making the perfect cup of tea?

Golden oldie: The smell of Christmas

This is a true story that one of my friends recounted last Christmas. In fact, I think the story is so funny that it deserves to be shared with you all again.

My friend (N) and his family adopted a rescue dog from Ireland a while back: an English staffie (Staffordshire bull terrier) with the sunny disposition of a dog without a care in the world, and the energy of a circus troupe of toddlers on a sugar high!

staffbullterradult5One day last winter, I was walking in the woods when I was knocked over by a compact barrel with legs, a veritable cinnamon bun with the sheer power of a tank!

My friend, N, told me this funny story about how the Staffie had embarrassed him over Christmas. He had to nip up to the shops for some emergency food and decided to take Staffie with him for the exercise.

When he got to the supermarket, he started tying her up as usual on those doggie loops they have outside the shop. Suddenly, without any warning, she jerked the lead off the loop and made a mad dash for the shop, winding N in the process.

He sped after her, only to find her with her front paws inside the first set of automatic doors and her bum firmly outside. (It should be mentioned that there is a kind of airlock system in the shop. The first doors let you come into the lobby where you can pick up the shopping trolleys and baskets. The second set of doors open up to allow you entrance to the shop itself.)

pit-bull-drooling-740784“Gotcha!” he cackled and made a flying leap at her. Just then a large lady laden down with goodies activated the second set of doors – the ones that allow hungry dogs access to paradise!

The dog dashed triumphantly through these doors, violating every known (and unknown) Swedish health regulation (and probably all the EU ones, too!), careering past the fruit and veg as fast as her little legs could carry her and right to the back of the shop. Where she stopped. And stared. And drooled and drooled in front of the delicatessen counter.

Red-faced, N finally caught up with her, grabbed the lead and started pulling her away. Just like the sword in the stone, she refused to budge. By now, both N and Staffie had bulging eyes and pools of saliva were congealing on the floor. In the end, he had to pick her up and walk back to the doors through the whole length of the shop. The whole shop stared and tutt-tutted.

He tied her up and went back inside to buy the single item on his list.

As he waited in the queue, he could hear a weird howling sound every time the doors opened.


Silence when they shut. Then WHOOOO! HOOO! again. Poor kid bawling its eyes out, he thought. Only to have it dawn on him that it was Staffie, making a noise that she has never made before or since.

His red face turned purple, then puce. He could hear people thinking, “That’s why people like him shouldn’t have dogs like that!”

And that, dear readers, is what the smell of Christmas can do to a dog!

(These pictures are courtesy of Google and not actually photos of the dog in question.)

For more amazing pets, please visit: Pet Pride!

Gnome sweet gnome

The children’s excitement about Christmas has reached seismic levels that cannot be measured on a Richter scale of anticipation and enthusiasm.

Each morning in the run-up to Christmas Eve – which is the BIG day here in Sweden when Santa leaves presents – the kids have been getting up and swabbing floors and windows (at around 6 am) in the hopes of keeping on Santa’s nice list!

In olden days, Swedes had house elves for that sort of thing and you only had to pay them with porridge rather than yawn-filled early mornings.

The anklebiters are also keen on the idea of having Christmas chocolates, preferably ones that they have made themselves out of melted chocolate or cocoa powder, milk and sugar!

They are eager to clean up after themselves, conveniently self-defeating though, as they forgot to clean their hands, thus peppering the house, walls, floor and fridge with delicious smears.

Oh, well – we usually just decorate the house with towers of LEGO. The chocolate handprints are a nice festive touch!

May you all have a laughter and chocolate filled Christmas!

Scandinavian humour

Who says Scandinavians don’t have a sense of humour?

(I found this gem on the Internet, but with no information as to who the photographer is. Whoever you are – I thank you for making me laugh!)