Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Tuesday's Treasures a Day Late

The small elf or gnome we call Tomtenisse in Sweden, is a part of the rich Swedish folktale tradition that includes trolls, elves, giants, fairies, witches and the little elf-like tomte who often lived in the barn and was thought to be benevolent, looking after the farmer, his family and animals. As you can see, he bears little resemblance to the big and burly Santa of today.

I treasure this little plate, a gift from my cousin, Anders. Anders and I share an interest in Old Town, Gamla Stan, the oldest part of Stockholm. We love the jazz clubs in the ancient cellars, the magic of the narrow alleys and crooked medieval buildings. When I'm in Stockholm, Anders always treats me to a nice dinner in one of the many restaurants there. The plate is made by Arabia, Finland. Every Christmas I look at it and remember many good dinners and conversations with my cousin Anders in Gamla Stan.

Here you can see the little tomte again. He doesn't look much like Santa, does he? While I believe he may now be a Santa's helper, he is not related. It seems like this little tomte has always been with me. Maybe he is keeping an eye on things around this place.

On my Monday evening without power, I sat here and wrapped gifts as darkness fell outside. I'm so glad I took this picture and I want to share it here. It will remind me of the important things in life that you can feel and observe when modern conveniences fail you.

I'm up for another challenge today. One of those huge windstorms is going full force outside and it's raining again. And I have to go to the dentist and get the permanent filling put in and then to the lab for my diabetes blood tests. I may have cancelled, but I have a gift to bring my dentist and his wife, so I'm off. At least I'm not going to the flat desert below where I would be really scared driving the little Jeep in a storm like this. 


  1. I would treasure that little plate it is really lovely ~ and I enjoyecd reading about your cousin Anders ~ thankyou for sharing your memories with us ~ Ally x

  2. Inger,
    Once more, I love hearing of your Swedish customs and traditions. It's just fun! Also, the table is beautiful...I'm sure it was a nice quiet place to be without all the conveniences of the modern world. I hope you successfully survive the rains and winds today and your journey out wasn't that bad.
    Take good care and thank you for all the blessings YOU have given me!

  3. Well "better late than never":)
    Wonderful treasures....and good luck at the dentist. (That is not my most favorite place to go:( Nice of you to take a gift:))
    Have a wonderful day:)

  4. I can see why that plate is so special, Inger! A treasure for sure!

    Lovely table setting in the dark and a good memory for you to keep!

    Be careful on your trip and stay safe! So sorry about so much wind and rain!

  5. Be careful!

    Love that little Santa/elf - looks like a gnome. :)

  6. Safe travels, Inger. Funny, but I'll worry about you until you post again. :)

    Your little Swedish treasures are so sweet. I've always been fond of gnomes and the like and your plate and candle holder are just "right."

    Have a splendid day.

  7. I hope you're having a safe trip in the storm. I'm glad you have your jeep, it looks like a sturdy thing.

    Thanks again for continuing to tell us about the Swedish Christmas traditions. It's so much fun learning all about them.

  8. I hope your drive went well today. I love your description of Stockholm and the Jazz clubs, sounds like such a wonderful place to visit!!
    When storms take out our electric, it does bring us back to basics. I can always remember electrical outages as being some of the best family time ever!!! Telling stories, hearing total silence, and being still.

    May your day be blessed!

  9. I love the trolls, there was a book series of troll books that we had as kids oh I have to ask my mother if she remembered what it was called , but I am pretty sure they were swedish.

  10. I like your dogs. The pictures are nice too. Have a nice holiday.

  11. Funny to see the "change" in santa! Hope all is well with your tests & fillings!

  12. Oh I love all your sweet things you have saved over the years especially the little Tomte's my favorites. That sounds like so much fun with your brother. When we lived in CA the power wet off a lot up in the mountains and we rather enjoyed it. I remember the kids moaning when it came on lol. Here in this part of Homer we have underground power so you see no poles anywhere here and less trouble for sure. It rarely goes out here.
    Hope you have a safe trip to the dentist and get that all finished up for the year. Merry Christmas to you and your husband and all your sweet doggies. Nan

  13. I love that plate! I have a small collection of horse plates, and that one is adorable!
    I hope you had a safe drive, and all went well at the doctor and dentist.

  14. What an interesting post! I love it when the power goes out and we have candles everywhere. Actually, we have candles everywhere EVERY night! :D

    I'll be thinking of you as you go to the dentist...ugh! Be careful on those windy ways! Hugs to you!!

  15. Love the table setting...take care outside today.

  16. I've always "sort-of" believed in earth gnomes. I'd find your little elf easier to connect with than our burly Santa. Thank you for spreading the word about your traditions. I find it fascinating and good luck with the new tooth. (Perhaps you now need a tooth gnome. :) )
    Love and Merry Christmas, Manzanita


Thanks for leaving a comment.. ~~ Inger


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