10 Ways to Make the Most of Christmas in Copenhagen

Jul love Christmas in the Danish capital.

When living in Denmark. I say. Bring on Christmas.

It’s November now. The clock has turned back and the dark descends earlier each evening. By Christmas, it’ll be down to a mere seven hours of daylight per day around Denmark. No need to fret. Don’t be concerned. Bust out your candles and spark on those fairy lights. Let’s get our Jul on. It’s one of the things I adored most about living in Denmark. And Danish Christmas activities kick off quickly – the first Friday of November – with J-Dag and the delivery of julebryg, or Christmas beer all over Copenhagen. Soon the Julemanden, Denmark’s version of Santa, will illuminate the streets with stars, hearts, and twinkles swathed above this pretty city’s historic center. Continue reading “10 Ways to Make the Most of Christmas in Copenhagen”

Copenhagen Color: Where to Get Your Autumn On

Best Places to Find Fall Color in Copenhagen

A Self-Guided Bicycle/Walking Tour of Autumn Foliage and Danish Café Hygge

Fall is fantastisk in Copenhagen. Deciduous trees that dominate the landscape start changing colors to blend perfectly with the classic Scandinavian architecture. The Danish capital is suddenly coordinated in rusty reds, earthy ochres, and burnt oranges. This town is built for autumn. The long Nordic summer days slowly get shorter as they slip into my favorite season, even as the light lingers less and the air turns cool. Pull on a sweater. Or a jumper, if you’re British. Definitely bring layers and something to stave off the very real potential for rain. Fall can be crisp like a tart Danish apple, famous from the island of Fejø, ripe and ready to pluck.

But it’s not always rainy. Here, autumn can come sometimes sunny and bright. In Danish, there is a name for that hybrid season as summer turns to fall – known as sensommer. And it can be sublime. Come soak it up. And if the weather wanes, as it is wont to do in Denmark, you can enjoy the season change from inside one of Copenhagen’s many cozy cafés and delicious craft coffeehouses.

Originally posted September 2019, updated September 2022

Continue reading “Copenhagen Color: Where to Get Your Autumn On”

Where to go crabbing in West Sweden

Take a seafood safari through Gothenburg’s gorgeous archipelago of islands
Head out to sea with Kastor Boat Trips in the Hönö Harbor

If you know this Oregon Girl, you know that I love sampling fresh local seafood while I’m out traveling. Especially when it’s sustainably caught not far from the shores we’re visiting. So when planning our trip back to Scandinavia this summer, I carved out a few days to try some in West Sweden. This region is famous for seafood caught in the cool, clear waters of the Baltic Sea.

Continue reading “Where to go crabbing in West Sweden”

Crabbing on the Oregon Coast

Scooping up Delicious Dungeness Crabs

TIPS AND TRICKS TO PULL YOUR LIMIT IN THE STATE OF OREGON

Three hours before high tide. We’ve checked the boat. It still starts. That’s key. We load it up with rings, pots, and boxes. We’re going crabbing. On the Oregon Coast. Yes – you heard me. OREGON. Oregon Girl and crew are back around the world for a month visiting family and friends. In Oregon. It’s a little surreal. In the best way. Don’t worry Denmark, we’ll be back. But for now, we’re soaking up, tasting, seeing, and hugging all those things and people that we missed. It’s good.

(Originally posted July 2016, up-to-date as of September 2022)

SEEK OUT YACHATS ON THE CENTRAL OREGON COAST

Have you been crabbing? I have done this in Oregon for as long as I can remember. Maine may have their “lobstahs,” but here on the Pacific Northwest Coast, we hunt Dungeness Crab. Growing up in Eugene – a university town that sits mid-state off I-5 in western Oregon – we frequent the central Oregon coast between the little towns of Florence and Newport. And we’re more than lucky that my mom loves sharing her coast house. We spend most of our time in charming and quirky, but oh so cozy Yachats. (Around here, locals pronounce it YAW-hots. Not yeah-chats. It is an anglicized title originating from an indigenous Native American name and some claim it loosely translates to “dark water at the foot of the mountain.” You can more about the people that populated this place before colonization here.)

Continue reading “Crabbing on the Oregon Coast”

The Intangible Benefits of Letting Teens Travel by Themselves

In praise of the post-high school Gap Year

High school’s complete. Graduation done. Caps have been tossed and gowns taken off. After all the pomp and circumstance winds down, what follows for many American post-high school kids is a summer of fun, and probably a job, before heading off to university in the fall. But why don’t more kids in the US take a longer break after 12+ years of constant schooling? Why isn’t a Gap Year option very prevalent here? As an American who lived in Europe for nearly seven years, I have raised adolescents both in the States and abroad. I am not unique in this case but offer as backdrop for my own personal opinion. Lots of European kids take an entire year off. To work. To travel and explore. Before they start higher education. And I think more American graduates should consider it. Here’s why.

Continue reading “The Intangible Benefits of Letting Teens Travel by Themselves”