Lifecruisers Midsummer strawberries
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There is nothing more practically screaming Swedish Midsummer than strawberries. It’s a must at the Midsummer Feast (with whipped cream) as much as the flowers and the Schnapps to the pickled herring…

The Maypole though has begun to vanish since people are more and more living in the cities and neither got the time or the possibilty to find enough material to make it from.

This past Friday we celebrated the Swedish National Holiday, Midsummer Eve out in the countryside with good friends.

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Their stable and barn.

We had no Maypole to dance around at our Midsummer Fest, but I must admit that I kind of miss it. Not necessarily to dance the amusing “frog dance” around it *giggles*, but just to see it stand there garnished with garlands of flowers, as the phallic symbol it has been and now for traditions and the arrival for summer.

As I suspected, there were even tough to find enough flowers (7 different species) for the girls to pick this year and lay under their pillows to dream about their future husbands. They have all already bloomed out. I can’t even remember that this ever has happened before.

Will this mean that there gonna be fewer marriages in the nearest future? *giggles*

I can’t think of any Swedish National Holiday that is so connected to the nature, especially since every one escape the cities and go out in the countryside this holiday, leaving Stockholm totally emptied like a ghost town.

The weather was very traditional too – offering some rain here and there… One tradition on the Midsummer Eve is to eat outside and very often you have to carry the table out and in between the showers…. *giggles*

We started at our friends farm at around lunch time – under roof though, charged up to our teeth with eager to eat pickled herrings and drinking Schnapps – and singing some Schnapps songs! That’s also why the photos didn’t get better than this – blame it on the schnapps ;-)

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An old tradition is to put branches of birch every where as decorations.

Some of you may make YUK-sounds at the thought of pickled herring, but I wonder if you have tasted the Swedish home made inlayed herring? Yes, I admit that it might take a couple of tasting oppurtunities to get used to it. I didn’t eat herring until I was all grown up and only with sourcream and chives on the top.

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Pickled herring with red onion in left lower corner, fresh potatoes, different kinds of mixed herring / shrimp / egg halfs with shrimps and roe, cheese and Swedish crispbread.

I believe it’s like many other things we eat, sometimes we learn to eat it, it kind of grows on you! And we change taste in different ages too. I didn’t eat olives until I was grown up either and now it’s my absolutely favorite snacks!

We also did some walking quiz and this year we weren’t the winners as we were last year. OK, we guessed at most of them, but it still was clever of us…

It’s a lot about eating, drinking and socializing as every feast is, so we also had a BBQ at dinner time. Every one had to bring something with them and we did bring pork fillet (and potato salad), stuffed with garlic and marinated for hours in my best BBQ sauce.

So you want to know how to do that? Take Original Caj P’s BBQ sauce (like an ordinary BBQ sauce, brownish with some taste of hickory) but spice it up with salt, mixed pepper, paprika powder and yellow mustard seeds (a must!). It’s the best!

Sorry, no pictures, the hungry monster throw her self upon it and teared it apart as a wild animal and totally forgot to take pictures. I get very hungry in the countryside – or at the sea – be aware of that cruisers…

Since the host has built up a little music studio on the top in the barn, they went in there to jam a little. I’m sorry to say that I missed to take more photos of them. Darn in the barn…

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Mr Lifecruiser at the drums, with the host on guitar – which he mastered excellent.

The Midsummer Eve is the most romantic genuine traditional holiday we have in Sweden since Valentines Day has been adopted more lately, so what about the LOVE this evening?

Well, as you might suspect, Mr Lifecruiser and I did our best despite the fact that we didn’t see any moonlight because of the clouds…. *giggles*

…and we had good help from their Nordsvenska stallion which has mares coming there all the time now to get humped loved… They were in different paddocks, lovelorn for each other.

 Nordsvensk Stallion  His girlfriend - Nordsvensk mare
The Nordsvensk stallion and his current girlfriend

We ended the Midsummer Eve in their guest cottage were we finally slept deep, surrounded by all the pleasant sounds in the countryside.

- but I didn’t wake up by a cock crow in the morning – neither the roosters or Mr Lifecruisers! *giggles*

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Another cock in the house ;-)

Captain Cocky Lifecruiser

UPDATE: See all the photos of the Midsummer Feast 2007 in a Flickr slideshow. If you want to see the comments, just move the cursor to the center of the image and click on the i that appears. Or make it go faster (down in left corner).

26 Comments on “Midsummer flower power love”

    Crafty Gardener said:

    It is strawberry time here too … delicious. I’ve had pickled herring and many other sea foods. Love them all.
    It’s tea thyme In my Canadian Garden for GTS.

    chase said:

    Look at those strawberries! Reminds me of my summer vacay in Finland where I was picking some strawberries.

    Fabulous food and looks like you had a wonderful time as well.

    Btw, on Derelict Mag you can also just post summaries of your blog entry with a link to your original post! Like this new entry you have now.

    Sassy said:

    Oh I am so jealous of those luscious strawberries. My 6 year old planted 2 plants for fun and she has gotten a few off of them. What your secret?

    Jean said:

    Thanks for sharing your Midsummer Eve. Sounds like lots of fun! The strawberries look delishes! I like pickled herring but usually only eat it at Christmas time. My Dad taught my brother and I to eat it when we were very young.

    Christa said:

    How interesting to hear there is a Swedish National Holiday that celebrates summer and nature. We don’t have that here in the USA, sadly.

    My father used to make a potato salad with pickled herring and, as a kid, I wouldn’t go anywhere near it. Now, as an adult, I like it!

    Beautiful strawberries. Enjoy!

    Sara said:

    What a great green thumb sunday entry with those mouth watering strawberries.
    Sara from farmingfriends

    Melli said:

    YAY! Oh, how I DO wish you had danced around a Maypole! Can you believe I have NEVER done it? I should come to Sweden before they disappear entirely so that I can have at least ONE chance to dance around one!!! (wearing a very flowery hat I should think…)

    Looks like you all had a grand time even without the pole – music at least! That’s always good! And the pickled herring I have never had either – but I do LOVE fish – and I love sour creme and chives too – so I’m thinking I would LIKE it! It IS cooked isn’t it? It’s not one of those RAW fish deals, is it???

    Chris and Laurie said:

    The strawberries look yummy. Makes me hungry for shortcake:)

    Lifecruiser said:

    Well, Melli I can just see you – doing the frog dance around the may pole wearing that flowery hat! STUNNING PICTURE! *giggles*

    Uhum, yes, the pickled herring is kind of raw fish, but I SWEAR to you that you don’t think of it as raw when you taste it since it’s layed in in that special mixes of stuff!

    I don’t like Sushi myself, but I can eat pickled herring since it’s spiced so…

    claudie said:

    What a beautiful Midsummer feast! We partipate as if we were with you! Interesting post! This tradition comes of an old age and there are so many things to learn about it! Miam! I want to taste all things on the table! And the aperitif! I need a schnapps! Oh, oh! Mr lifercruiser is playng the african jumbe on the photo! Believe me or not I’ve put 7 different wild flowers under my pillow last night just to see my prince in my dreams!!!
    And the marvelous horses and other!!!
    Your host live in a marvelous place!

    claudie said:

    Wonderful Midsummer feast! I could believe i’m now in Sweden! Dancing around the maypole with Melli!
    I become hungry and want to taste all wich is on the table! And the aperitif! I adore schnapps! What about the northcountry schnapps I don’t know but i want to taste it and play music! I see Mr Lifecruiser with the african jumbe! Do you remember, I’m swimming in the african atmosphere! Believe me or not, i’ve put 7 different wild flowers under my pillow this night! Just to dream of my prince! And the best these beautiful horses! they have a such prestance! Class!
    With your post, Mrs Lifecruiser, no need flowers this night, I’m sure to have marvelous dreams still!

    lazaza83 » Holiday, soon! said:

    [...] The Lifecruiser Cyber Tour and the Midsummer Power Flowers [...]

    RennyBA said:

    What a lovely summery of your National Holiday – some similar and some different from Norwegians.

    I thought it was 7 types of flowers under the pillow, and not spices, so now I’ve learned something today too!

    Hmmm pickled herrings – yummy and also Snaaps – I just love that combination! Annother lovely traditions of yours which we share is all the ‘table snaaps songs’ and after all the snaaps almost everone can sing you know.

    Thanks for your country side guided tour – you really took me down the love memory lane there:-)

    I have my Midsummer post too and linked yours of crouse!

    Ramblin Rose said:

    Wow Lovely photo’s !! makes me want to come to Sweden…. Not sure aobut pickled herring must be an aquired taste kinda like vegemite which I still cannot stand after living in Australia for 14 plus years!!!

    ramblin rose

    Lifecruiser said:

    Thanks Renny, I read about yours too and is linking to it now :-)

    Oh yes, everyone is singing sooo good you could believe they were stars…. *giggles*

    …though you did know right about the flowers, I wrote species which means types of flowers. Not only 7 flowers, but also different ones :-D

    Kylee said:

    What a great post! Thanks for sharing your custom with us! It sounds like so much fun. I actually can remember skipping around the Maypole in Kindergarten.

    Chigiy said:

    I like this whole Swedish Tradition thing. Drinking, cooking, dancing, more drinking, eating, more drinking, more eating, more drinking and farm animals.

    Sword Girl » Blog Archive » Soma’s first ever theater movie! said:

    [...] Midsummer Flower Power Lover by Mrs. Lifecruiser! [...]

    RennyBA said:

    Your always so supportive!

    Of course everyone is a star and even looks like one after snapps:-)

    Thanks for the enlightenment – and it has to be wild flowers right!

    aka R'acquel said:

    I’m so itchy from all the chilblains on my hands & feet caused by the cold weather at the moment. =P I saw strawberries at the supermarket last night, but they were too expensive at $5.98/punnet. I’d only pay that much if they were BLUEberries! Brrrr! So cold tonight, so i’m definitely jealous! *lol* ;D

    Hootin' Anni said:

    Wonderful array for us cruisers here today! I love the strawberries with whipped cream….and ya, I like pickled herring too!! Have you ever tried cherry herring? —It’s Norwegian –and a drink! I love, love LOVE it!!

    You’ve made us a special treat today. I enjoyed reading it.

    Sword Girl said:

    You are making me very hungry! What an awesome display of food and the countryside! It makes me wanna go so badly. I wouldn’t mind trying the pickled herring. :)

    We are planning on go camping around my birthday in the Blue Ridge Mountains In North Carolina. It is called Shining Rock Wilderness – Pisgah National Forest. We’re gonna camp under the stars for a few days – I can’t wait! :)

    TorAa said:

    Like you Swede envy our May 17 – we Norwegian envy your traditional Midsummer feast. It’s a pity though, the tradition with the Maypile is sort of vanishing. Did you know, that in France, they have the May tree (l’Arbre de Mai)?. It was et up agaings the church wall in May, to protect the crop against all kinds of “devils” and brought down after the harvest. Both time the villagers did have a “Féte”.

    Me, like you, did not eat herrings nor olives until grown. And s
    aquevit – dangerous – very dangerous – LOL.

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful celeb at midsummer.

    Gattina said:

    It seems you had a lot of fun ! I remember the Maibaum from my childhood in Germany it looks exactly like your maipole ! and people were dancing around. I never saw it here in Belgium maybe they do it in villages. Now I danse in my bed !

    Kasia said:

    The photos look absolutely terrific. So, strawberry season, ha? :) They are my favourite fruit.
    And this is so nice that such a modern nation like Swedish love their tradition. Some nation go forward and never look back, but if you don’t look back you finally forget where you came from, right?

    that frolicsome kid said:

    The strawberries look delicious and ready to be eaten. They look so fresh too! =O Putting flowers under pillows sounds like a wonderful custom! Did you put them under your pillow last time? ;)

    The Midsummer sounds interesting too, and the festivity is nice and simple with loads of fun. =) You guys are really fortunate that you are given a holiday to come back to nature and appreciate its beauty. =) And also to be so high up in the latitude to even have midsummers! *sigh* Over here, we “celebrate summers” every day. How dull! =P

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