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Today’s tale begins at the end of another art and travel blog in our European trip and finds us just having finished lunch in 167. THE ART OF LETTING GO. Cousin Benny and his sister Berit her partner Anders were now taking us around Sundbyberg and Solna seeing the houses and schools where my parents lived and grew up.  If you want to recap even more of our European adventures here are some links; 156. ART & FREQUENT FLYER POINTS and 157. Art & Never judge a book by it’s cover and 155 The Art of Packing Light and 164. ART, TOILETS AND TRAVEL and 166. Rondellhund, Roundabout dogs Sculptures


This acrylic on canvas board painting is of course influenced by growing up in Sweden although I think I may have used some artistic licence as the slopes were not that full of people skiing!


Skiing on the Swedish ski-slopes in a painting


We were now on our way to where Benny lives in Vaxholm by car although it’s often reached by boat.  By boat it is a very atmospheric trip through Stockholm’s archipelago which comprises of some 30,000 islands would you believe.  Vaxholm itself is made up of about 70 small islands so a boat is required for the most part if you want to explore further.  Benny lived on the main island of Vaxholm not too far from Vaxholm Hotel where we stopped for a drink taking in the wonderful view over the archipelago.  The old town was originally a fishing community which sold most of their catch to the big city.  Many of the old wooden houses were built on stilts, hanging out over the water.   Everywhere you look is gorgeous houses wooden houses with beautiful roofs.   There is also a fortress built there in 1549 by King Gustav Vasa, originally to defend the capital of Stockholm from invasion and later used as a prison which is now Sweden’s biggest military museum.


Many Swedish artists, authors and poets were influenced by the archipelago of Stockholm among them August Strindberg, Astrid Lindgren and ABBA to name a few.  Pippi Longstocking’s plays are often shown in Vaxholm during the summer months and some of the scenes in the movie were actually shot there.  (For those among you with children I can thoroughly recommend Pippi Longstocking and any books or movies based on Astrid Lindgren’s books, “Emil i Lonneberga”, “Karlson pa taket” and “Vi pa Saltkrakan” just to name a few.)

skiing on Swedish ski-slopes with lots of people

skiing up a storm on a painting


Anyway I digress – here we are with my cousins Benny and Berit and after a lovely stroll  we go home to Benny.  He lives in what is known as the Dolls House which is the most gorgeous yellow and white little wooden house, beautifully decorated in white and blue inspired by the sea and boats.  The bedroom is decked out  like a captain’s cabin on a ship and everywhere you look there are influences from the sea.  An added bonus on our visit are hundreds of newly picked Kantareller (a yellow Swedish mushroom that grows in the forest) which were lying drying on the table and floor.


The memories of this day are really a highlight of the entire trip, maybe it was because I finally came to terms with the death of my grandparents 167. THE ART OF LETTING GO and what could have been such a sad and sombre day actually was filled with delight both at seeing their final resting place and then our little party in the Dolls House. “ Moi” who is useless in the kitchen and has not a clue how to cook actually got the job of cutting up the mushrooms, luckily this activity was fuelled by red wine, lol.  Who would have thought but I actually had so much fun helping my much more experience cousins in the kitchen whilst hubby and Anders discussed the world, universe and everything!  (Berit has great experience in hospitality and these days has her own catering company) The meal of Stewed Kantareller in a Béchamel sauce on toasted long bread with asparagus was one of the yummiest I ever had!  Casually and relaxed we sat on the floor around the coffee table eating,  drinking good wine and really, I never wanted the night to end.

dinner of Swedish Mushrooms, kantareller in the dolls house Vaxholm

An artistic dinner

Here is a quote that fits perfectly by Pierce Harris;

“Memory is a child walking along a seashore.  You never can tell what small pebble it will pick up and store away among its treasured things.”

Till next time happy painting and sculpting, and making memories to you all!

Love Marie xxxx

Why not come and have a look at Marie Jonsson-Harrison’s PAINTINGS FOR SALEGICLEE PRINTS FOR SALE and SCULPTURES for sale or WALLBASED SCULPTURES.  Enjoy an original artwork on your walls or perhaps one on your bed ARTnBED.

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