We had a dreamy time in Sweden a couple of weeks back – how I wish I was back in our log cabin by the lake…






We fell in love with the landscape and countryside – I don’t think I saw a single normal building on the three and a half hour drive from Stockholm up to Dalarna, just identical red and white cottages. At this time of year the sun only goes down for a couple of hours from about midnight which was surreal and beautiful at the same time. When Orla woke me up the first morning, the sun was blazing and the whole house was glowing with all that woodwork! I sprang out of bed, started chatting about getting milk and books, switched on the radio then checked my phone… 4.00am.

Walking from our cottage to the lake each morning I found the traditional wooden buildings fascinating! Each little plot of land seemed to have one main house followed by a guest house and then a series of smaller ones which looked like sheds (though a couple turned out to be saunas – much more fun). Maybe people just buy a plot of land and then keep adding buildings as the family grows? They were all built and decorated in exactly the same style right down to the red paint (‘Falu Red’ originating from the nearby copper mines, so Google tells me) and hanging baskets filled with geraniums. Our house was very traditional with wood panelled walls, a tall, pitched roof, floral curtains, log burner and sauna. It would be fun to go back during the winter! The Darla horses pictured above are hand carved and originally came from this part of Sweden. I kind of regret not buying one to take home with us but since we live in such a tiny flat I’m trying hard to be a minimalist. This photo will just have to do for now!

I’m used to swimming in the freezing cold Atlantic coast of North Cornwall so the warm, fresh water lakes were a dream. Each night after Orla was tucked up in bed Ciaran and I cooked our dinner over the BBQ and sat out on the decking in the twilight under blankets. On our last night we heard a noise in the grass next to the house and a deer and her foal casually wondered  across our lawn. That’s what I love about Sweden – it’s wild but friendly at the same time. We promised ourselves we would be back one day!

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