Wednesday, June 29, 2011

"Other things may change us, but we start and end with the family"

So there is a lot to catch up with! I have been so busy the past few weeks between my mom’s visit to Finland and Jackie and I’s trip to Sweden.  After our game on Saturday we decided to show my mom the club scene here in Kokkola.  It was a girl on my teams 18th Birthday so we had a table reserved at a bar in town.  Go figure the night my mom came out it was a foam party! We only stayed a little while but had a lot of fun and have a lot of funny pictures to show from it!

We got up early Sunday to go watch Elis’ (Host family/Lil Bro) games.  He is only 9 but can probably kick my butt in 1 v 1.  After the game we went out for lunch at a place along the ocean. It was really nice. For the first few nights while Jackie and I left for training, Mom and Ebba were designated to the kitchen! We had some great home cooking and on Tuesday night we invited Tess (teammate) over to try some good ole chicken cutlets and homemade mashed potatoes.  She loved it!
Wednesday we had a game in Oulu.  They let Mom, Ebba and Robert come on the bus! We started off dominating the game but only five minutes in they scored a fluke goal.  The ball was crossed and when I came out it took a weird bounce and rolled into the net.  I was pretty disappointed but we were able to put away a beautifully placed shot just before the halftime whistle blew! The second half provided chances for both teams but the game ended 1-1.  Although we only came away with 1 pt it was a crucial pt for us as we both sit tied for 2nd place in the standings at this point in the season.  On the bus the manager of the team presented my mom with a customized GBK jersey!

One of the things my mom wanted to do while she was here was too meet everyone that has taken care of me over the past months.  Thursday we had lunch at Katja’s parents and then coffee and cake with Robert’s parents.  The food was really good and they always have so many delicious deserts!  At night we had dinner at the Astrom’s and then sauna! I have really been making my mom nervous about taking a sauna but she really enjoyed it I think.  Sauna is one of my favorite parts of being in Finland. It feels great to sweat everything out and then take a nice cold shower! The temperature usually is 80c so about 176f so you really get a sweat going in there after only a few minutes.

Friday morning we got up early and took the 4 hour train to Helsinki.  Mom and I spent the day together sightseeing in Helsinki.  We went to some really cool places and walked around the city quite a bit.  We took a ferry out to the islands off Helsinki to see the sea fortress.  Suomelinna was built as protection against Russia.  While the island now has many people living in a lot of the buildings there was a few interesting tunnels, walls and cannons. When we got back we checked out the market place. It was closing but we got to see a few stands. They had a lot of really nice silver. The silversmith makes the jewelry at the spot and you can buy it there.  The last stop we made was to the Rock Church.  This was really cool! The church was built inside a massive rock and has this saucer looking roof.  Inside the walls are all rock and the lighting comes from natural light. 

In the morning it was time to pack up and drop my mom off to the train station before I met the team for our cup game in Helsinki.  It was a very busy week but I was really happy to see my mom in real time and not just on Skype! It was hard to say good-bye and made me miss her more now that I just saw her, but I will be back home in 3 months and will get to see all my family and friends! Update from our trip to Sweden to come!!

Hejdå för nu!

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