Tag Archives: England

Our Weekend, Week 51 – Almost Christmas!

Not many days left until Christmas now, so I thought I would catch you all up with what we’ve done since last weekend, and what our plans are for Christmas.

Yesterday we had our annual Christmas party, but we made it a bit smaller this year, and made some proper vegetarian Christmas food and just one dessert. (The past two years we have had some sort of snacks available and lots of desserts!) We also made our delicious mulled wine and winter Pimm’s again, and I think everyone had a great time. 😀

Today we drove down to Sofi’s parents in Skåne with Lisa and Tommy, and stopped off for a nice lunch in Falkenberg on the way. We will be here for a few days and will celebrate an early Christmas on Tuesday with Sofi’s parents, brother, and Lisa & Tommy. On Wednesday we will fly to England to celebrate Christmas there.

It will be nice for Sofi to have Christmas food in both Sweden and England, because the food you get is very different, and I know she’ll love it. For me, so long as I get Brussels sprouts and roasted potatoes I am happy…otherwise I would rather eat more “normal” food than Christmas food…but what I am looking forward to though is having English Christmas desserts: minced pies, Christmas pudding, Christmas cake. These are probably my favourite thing about Christmas in England, and my mum has already made the Christmas cake and will make a Christmas pudding for Christmas Day 😀

So with all that food going down (and probably some alcohol as well), how will we avoid going up in weight too much and also keep our training going? Well, we have taken our running and cycling gear with us. We are planning on having a couple of runs down here in Skåne (one short one tomorrow probably, and then one long one on Tuesday – there has been a lot of talk about doing about 20 km), then I will cycle in England and Sofi will run and cycle in England.

There is always a lot of free time around Christmas (if you’re not working), so there is definitely time for exercise! We’re not planning any intense sessions, more steady sessions just so we get out and don’t put pressure on ourselves to go fast in case our bodies are tired…and weighed down by all the food! I’m looking forward to our run on Tuesday and then getting some rides in while we’re in England.

 

So our week looks like this:
Monday – Christmas shopping, short run
Tuesday – Early Swedish Christmas, long run
Wednesday – Flight to England
Thursday – Christmas Eve party at my sister’s, long ride (hopefully)
Friday – Christmas Day, rest day
Saturday – Boxing Day, ___ ride
Sunday – Sale shopping, walking round shops

 

We hope you have a very merry Christmas, we’ll post something again soon!
/Jason

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Our Weekend, Week 14 – Easter

So we arrived safely in England and have enjoyed our Easter weekend. 🙂

We arrived Friday evening, after a nice start to the day in Helsingborg, and ate dinner before going to bed – the hill repeats had really tired us out. On Saturday morning we were all planning on going for a ride (me, Sofi, my sister Jasmine, and my dad), but I was feeling a little bit unwell still, so opted to set up my pedals and stay at home instead while they went for a ride. (Sofi’s ride, my dad’s ride, Jasmine’s ride.)

After our ride, me, Sofi, and Jasmine went to Kingston for a bit of shopping and then went to see my grandpa (my mum’s dad), and we took him to Claremont. We had a nice walk and spotted a few different birds 🙂 In the evening we made cauliflower pizza. It was delicious and a recipe is coming soon 🙂

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On Sunday we went for a ride together to Seale and back, although a different way there to last time, up a tough hill to give Jasmine a little challenge. She did very well, and it is nice to see her getting more confident on each ride. (My ride, Sofi’s ride, Jasmine’s ride, my dad’s ride.) After the ride we watched the Tour of Flanders on TV and had a family lunch/dinner for Easter and for Lesley’s (my dad’s girlfriend) birthday. It was a really nice afternoon catching up and enjoying the good food my dad had cooked.

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On Monday, we went to Portsmouth with my mum and Jeremy (her husband) for some outlet shopping 😀 Sofi finally replaced the purse that she bought from the same shop last year but was subsequently stolen a few months later, so she was extremely happy! We ate lunch at Brasserie Blanc, which was absolutely delicious. After we were done shopping, we went home via Guildford to pick up a few other little things. In the evening we went out for Indian food with my mum, Jeremy, Jasmine, and Nick (my sister’s finacé). I think we might have eaten a little too much…but that’s ok every now and again 😉

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Today me and Sofi went to London for the day. Being a history lover and seeing as she is teaching her students about WWI at the moment, Sofi wanted to go to the Imperial War Museum. I hadn’t been since I was a little boy, so it was really interesting to go again now (I think they’ve redone a lot inside since I last went as well). After the Imperial War Museum, we went to lunch at Sticks n Sushi, a Danish sushi restaurant that Sofi had been wanting to go to for a long time. The food was really good, and we would both recommend it. (Unlike me, Sofi actually ate some of the real sushi and she said it was the best sushi she had ever eaten!)

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After lunch, we walked around London, stopping at the Rapha Cycle Club store to get Sofi’s cycling shorts, and we also had fika and caught the end of today’s stage from the Tour of the Basque Country. Sofi was in Rapha heaven, and I think we were lucky to escape without a million purchases. 😀 We then walked through Mayfair to Hyde Park, where we enjoyed the open space and soft grass underneath our feet before heading back to Waterloo to catch a train home.

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Tomorrow we’re cycling to my friend in Basingstoke, about a 100 km round trip, and then we are planning on riding a few hills on Thursday and having a nice pub lunch out on our bikes. It’s then back to Sweden (to Helsingborg to stay at Lisa and Tommy’s again) on Friday (we might get a short ride in in the morning though 😉 ), and then we’ll head back to Gothenburg some time on Saturday afternoon. Holidays never seem to be too relaxed with us…but I guess we do call ourselves “active” beans!

We really will try to put some recipes up soon, but sometimes there is far too much going on! We hope you all had a nice Easter break, and got to enjoy the good weather (if you had some).
/Jason and Sofi

Our Weekend, Week 11

This weekend was quite long. Sofi came to England Thursday evening, and we went straight out for dinner with my family, at a nice Italian restaurant in Woking. The food was great, but it was especially nice to have everyone (most people) together!

On the Friday me and Sofi cycled to see my mum in Sunninghill before she and Jeremy went up north for the weekend. We had a nice lunch and fika with them 🙂 My dad then met us in Sunninghill and we cycled back to Woking through the army ranges near Farnborough. It was a lovely ride with great weather 😀

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In the evening me and Sofi made dinner for my dad and Lesley, and Jasmine and Nick. We made melanzane for starter and then made gluten-free pesto pasta for main. (Recipe for gluten-free pasta will be up soon.) We then had rum baba for dessert, with a gluten-free sponge my sister had made – delicious!

On Saturday we had a nice ride to Seale. It was me, Sofi, my dad, my sister, and Iain (one of my dad’s regular riding buddies). It was a fairly cold ride, but my sister did really well and our average speed was much higher than the weekend before 🙂 We stopped at Seale Tea Rooms, and had a nice warm drink and some cake – that’s the main reason for riding a bike though, isn’t it!

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After our ride we packed and then headed to Harrow on the Hill, where we were staying for the wedding. The Saturday was the traditional ceremony in a mosque, which was interesting to experience. Neither of us had ever been to a Muslim wedding before, so it was nice to see how it was similar and different to what we consider “normal” weddings. After the ceremony we had a nice Indian meal in the mosque. For me, it was really nice to hear what people had to say about my friend Sameer, as I could only agree with all the nice words that were said! 🙂 Neither of us had met his bride Madiha before, but she seemed really lovely and people only had nice (if not nicer) words for her too.

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Sofi in a nice Indian shalwar kameez 😀

After the ceremony was over and most people had left, we went back to our hotel to change before heading to the local pub for a drink and to talk. (Sofi hasn’t been able to talk to me face to face for a week, so she had a lot to say! 😉 )

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The wedding reception was on the Sunday and the invitation said “13:00 sharp”, so we were there at 12:55 and were surprised to find we were the first people to show up! After speaking to the caterers, they said most Muslim wedding receptions start 30-60 mins later than advertised. So we waited for more people to come before we went in 🙂

Both Sameer and Madiha’s families were very hospitable and caring, and looked after us (as the only real outsiders) during the whole weekend. It was really nice to get to know some of them and find out more about both Sameer and Madiha this way too. Sameer and Madiha looked great, and we were the first people to get a picture with them as a newly-wed couple (mainly because we had to leave to catch our plane back to Sweden).

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We hope they have a wonderful honeymoon and can’t wait to invite them over for dinner once they get back to Sweden.

It was a great weekend, and a great week as well. Today we went for a run after work and then made our quick Asian salad. Not a bad start to the week 🙂

We hope you all had nice weekends!
/Jason and Sofi

Our Weekend, Week 10

I suppose this post should be “Our Weekends”, seeing as I am in England and Sofi is still in Sweden, thus two very different weekends.

Like we have mentioned before, we are going to a wedding next weekend and that wedding is in England. So I thought I would come here a little earlier so I had time to spend with my family and get a few rides in on the poor English roads as well!

Along with me and Sofi, my sister, Jasmine, was also successful in the ballot for the RideLondon-Surrey 100 in August, a 100 mile (160 km) ride on closed roads in London and Surrey. So this weekend was also perfect to get my sister started with her bike training in preparation for that. Yesterday she joined me and my dad on a nice 30 km ride through the lanes. After the ride we caught the end of Strada Bianche (I was pleased to see another Etixx Quick-Step victory) and then headed to town to buy some bits. We then went out to an Italian for dinner as Lesley (my dad’s girlfriend) was running the Surrey Half Marathon today, so her and her friends were carb loading, one of my favourite pastimes 😀
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Lesley’s half started at 09:00, so me and my dad spent the morning planning where we could go and watch her on the route – it was on closed roads, so perfect for the runners, and an opportunity for us to try and race to our chosen spots to see her on other roads 🙂 We saw Lesley five times along the route, and covered 35 km. She looked strong and cheerful throughout, and came in at 2:09 – just under her planned time! 😀
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After seeing her near the finish, we rushed back home because Jasmine was waiting to ride with us. We put her on Sofi’s bike today (I brought it over to leave for when Sofi and I come at Easter), which was a better fit than my dad’s bike yesterday, and I think she preferred the colours as well! We had planned to go to a lovely tea room in Seale (where WyndyMilla bikes are based), but the sun went behind the clouds so we thought we would stay closer to home as it got a bit nippy 😦 We went a bit further than yesterday, and because Sofi’s bike has a compact, Jasmine was able to spin a lot more, which seemed to keep her going better. (My ride, my dad’s ride, Jasmine’s ride.) It was the first time in over 15 years I had cycled with my sister this weekend, so it was really nice! And it was great to get her started on her way to conquering 100 miles in August 😀
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Tonight both my grandfathers are coming over, as well as some other people, for a nice roast dinner. I’m still feeling a bit cold from the ride as I write this, so some warm food, sitting by the fire, and being with family will be a nice way to spend my evening 🙂

Next week I will be doing some work (I’m very fortunate to have a flexible role and be able to do most of my work from home…and abroad), and lots more cycling.


So, I am still in Sweden and like Jason wrote I will go to England on Thursday. My weekend has also been very busy. On Friday after work I went out to have dinner with some friends. I had booked a table at a new restaurant, vegetarian since 3 of them are vegetarians (and now I am sort of too). The food was very different and we shared a few different dishes. They had really tried new combinations and there were many different types of dishes. Unfortunately I didn’t manage to take a single picture. Everyone thought it was good (except Martin who wanted meat 🙂 ).

On Saturday morning I had a very early start and went out for a morning walk. At 8:40 I was all ready to take the train to my parents. I baked a pie and then Tommy’s (my sister’s bf) parents came for dinner at my parents’ place. They all liked my pie. 🙂 It was delicious! Then we just spent the evening playing games and talking.
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On Sunday morning I was going out for my first run in 3 months. I am seeing my physio on Tuesday again and I needed to see if there had been an improvement. I have not been able to run more than 2 km and then felt the pain in my leg. However, today I took it really slow and managed to run 6 km without feeling any pain. So I am hoping it is going to just keep getting better. It is really frustrating to not have been able to run. Now I just need to be careful so it doesn’t start hurting again. I have difficulty doing that though 🙂 my patience isn’t very big. The weather in Skåne (south of Sweden) today was gorgeous, warm and sunny. Spring might be here!

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I then went with my dad and brother to see my grandmother. In the evening I took the train home again and now I am ready for another week of work.

Have a great week everyone!
/Sofi and Jason