Monthly Archives December 2019

Good bye 2019!

Good bye 2019!

December 31, 2019
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This year with the intention As I am has truly been a most wonderful, challenging and rich year. So much has happened, so many meetings have taken place, so many insights and lessons have come my way. 

Monthly follow-up of the intention of the year: As I am
Continuously following up on the fairly detailed ambitions I set within four areas (bodily, mental and spiritual wellbeing, creativity and financial husbandry) has been a very interesting activity, helping me to remain focused, as it has given me at least (!) a monthly reminder on what it is I want to focus on.

Timetravel
The invite to T and Hs 100-year party in Stockholm gave me a day (or two) of time-travelling. The theme of the party was the 1920s, and with my soul sister S and A I was given a chance to truly travel in time. As if I simply stepped outside of my ordinary life during these days… magical!

Cold baths
I started taking cold baths at the end of November 2018, and took it to new heights during 2019, ending on a high with 8 days of cold bathing in a row. Thanks to the deep breathing-practice that’s taken a firm place in my life during 2019, I’ve given up the quick ”in and out”-dips of before, in favor of five-ten minute submersions in cold water, thanks in large part of breathing and focus. It’s absolutely amazing and definitely something I will continue doing!

Coach Dave
In December 2018 I hired coach Dave for a year’s worth of coaching, at substantial cost, a tad more than 100% more than I’ve ever invested in myself before. When the time came to pay the second installment, my Jenny (who does my company finances) if Dave was worth it. My answer was fairly illuminating: No, Dave isn’t worth it, but I am! It’s been a fantastic journey and I have learned a lot, but perhaps the most important insight is just that one. I am worth investing in!

Podcasting
I have released one round of my own pod Doing gentle with an edge, and have twice as many episodes recorded but as yet unreleased. I will, in due time! I have taken part in Caspians Ett samtal (for the second time round; in Swedish) and have, thanks to Caspian, moderated the pod Fria Barn (in Swedish) released in the fall of 2019. Together with Caspian and Mr D I am also busy recording a number of episodes of a new pod in English which will be released in January. Finishing of the year with a couple of days of New Years retreat with those two gentlemen – what a wonderful way to end a year and a decade in!

60 hours of tankespjärn
For many years, tankespjärn has been my companion, as a word, as a concept, even, when I started to reflect upon it, as my life philosophy, since long before the word revealed itself to me. During the year the idea to host 60 hours of tankespjärn was born in a conversation with coach Dave. That’s what happened and there will be more, mark my word, in years to come.

Pecha Kucha and TEDxSlottsparken
As I so often do, once again I say: Thanks to Caspian I did a Pecha Kucha in Lund in April headlined How I broke up with my inner dictator, and that experience in contrast with my June experience as a moderator at TEDxSlottsparken was enormous. I was very nervous to do the Pecha Kucha, whereas I, moderating TEDx felt calm and collected. The difference? My Pecha Kucha was written in advance, and had me timing speech with 20 slides for 20 seconds each, while as a moderator I could act in the moment from what was, which (apparently) suits me much better!

Kenya
Nine days in Kenya after midsummer turned into one of the most rewarding experiences of the year. It’s given me so much, in so many aspects, such as an increased understanding of the tree-savings-scheme I have as a part of my (and the kids) long-term savings since 2015, to an increased network and a very close friendship with my roommate Lena. I finished the blog-year with a 25-days advent calendar here, with images and stories from the trip, something which deepened my gratefulness for going, even more.

Mastermind-pilot
Another thing was born during a coaching conversation with Dave, when he gave me 15 minutes to “do something”, which resulted in my sending out an invite on the fly, to a handful of chosen people, to participate in a Mastermind-pilot. During thirteen Tuesday evenings starting in August, had me spending an hour with four participants and me as the facilitator. What a journey that turned into. A pilot that definitely has me wanting more!

Culture
It’s been a year of many lovely cultural experiences of all kinds. With Heléne I have experienced Patricia Piccininis A World of LoveGuds olydiga revben, sing-a-long to Rocketman på Spegeln as well as Stina Wollters exhibition in Borstahusen. Add to that a fantastic production of Mozart’s Requiem at Malmö Opera with Skånes Dansteater, yet another sing-a-long with Dirty Dancing on the big screen and last but not least, performing Stabat Mater over Easter, the first-ever performance of Missa Brevis at All hallows eve and the choir trip to Jämtland.

Goodreads reading challenge
I set a goal to read 75 books during 2019, and finished my 76th book on New Year’s Eve, so mission accomplished. I also have the 12 Swedish och 12 English books I chose at the start of the year, to read and blog about on a monthly basis. Ever since I invented this challenge in 2018, when I chose 26 + 26 (which was a bit too much) I have realized this to be an excellent way for me to ensure that the books I buy “in order to read” which then end up unread on a bookshelf, actually get read. So I will do the same for 2020, 12 + 12.

Ready to leave the nest
My firstborn headed off to Australia on adventures in January, coming home end November, just having turned twenty. 10,5 months on the other side of the planet, and if I had any doubt before the trip, by now I am 100% certain this kid is ready to leave the nest. This makes me very happy and grateful because this is what parenting is really about, making kids ready to fly on their own!

The year that has passed has, of course, been loaded with a huge number of things besides the few I display here, but in general, it’s been a fabulous year with up’s and down’s, with tears of joy as well as sorrow, with amazing moments in solitude as well as in togetherness, and I am thankful to each and everyone and everything–including myself–that’s participated in making this year so rich.

Finally, I wish for you and yours to have a truly wonderful new year, in joy and love, with warmth and light–take good care of yourself!

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Cosmos and Psyche: Intimations of a New World View (book 12 of 12)

December 29, 2019
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in Tip
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At long last… I started reading Richard Tarnas’s Cosmos and Psyche: Intimations of a New World View end of February, and just finished it, completing my Goodreads reading challenge of 2019 (75 books read, this is my 75th) as well as my “12 Swedish and 12 English books to read and blog about” of the year.

Cosmos and Psyche opens doors in the reader’s mind, doors towards the future. Yes, it records, analyzes, and interprets events of the past, but its primary relevance points towards the future. Its thorough research fulfills a function that is central to the genuine, hard-nosed pursuit of human knowledge: ‘the elicitation of disbelief and the celebration of surprise’ (Lewis Thomas). Richard Tarnas dares to be far ahead of conventional thought. He broadens our horizons until we suddenly see with delight vistas and connections we never expected. Here at last is a world view which – in contrast to prevailing ones – has a future.” – David Steindl-Rast

The first half of the book I read with no sense of urgency. The latter… Knowing here’s a book preferably read a chapter at a time, and not one iota more, as it is amongst the densest and rich writings I’ve as yet encountered, and knowing the five-hundred pages had to be read come new years…  Well. Let’s just say, I will be re-reading this book, and I will be mining gold-nuggets and jewels from it that I totally overlooked this first time, of that I am certain. You see, it’s easy to get cheesecaked out when reading Cosmos and Psyche which I think Tarnas (or his editor?) was very much aware of, as the chapters are mostly 8-12 pages long or so; just perfect!

“[One is reminded here of] Niels Bohr’s axiom in quantum physics, ‘The opposite of a profound truth may well be another profound truth’, or Oscar Wilde’s ‘A Truth in art is that whose contradiction is also true’. What is difficult, of course, is to see both images, both truths, simultaneously: to suppress nothing, to remain open to the paradox, to maintain the tension of opposites. Wisdom, like compassion, often seems to require of us that we hold multiple realities in our consciousness at once.”

Cosmos.
Psyche.

Outer.
Inner.

Without.
Within.

Tarnas gives me tankespjärn to last me a lifetime or two, in the most beautiful language. I am stunned, aha-ed, confused and confounded, at times chocked, now and again in total disbelief and throughout it all, flabbergasted at the amount of meticulous work that has gone into the makings of this work. It’s far from an easy read, one I would never have picked up had it not been for the one and only Mr D (who else…). How lucky I am!

“One is unlikely to discover what one is certain cannot possibly exist.”

Being open – in mind, in heart – is perhaps the single most important insight I take with me, from reading Cosmos and Psyche. With openness, the possibility increases to discover that which does exist, however unaware I am of it.


The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2019, to read and blog about 12 Swedish and 12 English books, one every other week, books that I already own.

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Follow up – November 2019 – As I am.

December 27, 2019
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I intend to go through my intentions for the year at the end of each month. This gives me a monthly reminder of my intentions as well as ample space for reflection and possible adjustment.

November. Another jampacked month that ended in a crescendo of emotions.
[On account of the Advent Calendar this post following up on November is much delayed.]

2019. The year when I will…

* have my bodily wellbeing in focus by:

  • continuing with my daily Seven accompanied by burpees: ✅
  • Headspace Meditate daily: ✅ 129 days with Wim Hof deep breathing.
  • run a minimum of  75 runs –> run-when-I-feel-like-it-intention: Not even once.
  • take cold (outdoors) baths as often as I can – and add to this by taking cold showers: 7 cold baths (or showers) in November. Have been to the open-air swimming-bath at Ribersborg a few times, and every time I go into the water for a swim, I stay in at least two minutes. That is quite the conversation starter I’ve noticed, many people comments and ask with curiosity “How on earth do you stay in so long?”. I enjoy that, ‘cuz it gives me a chance to talk about how I’ve come to love cold baths.
  • dance Lindy hop as often as I can (taking a class during the spring, and then there’s the social dancing as well!): Lindy hop-class ended mid-November and on Wednesdays after that I’ve been busy so haven’t been to the social dances either.
  • continuing to ride my bike and walk as much as possible: walked just short of 40 and biked barely 400 kilometers. I have 47 days with “at least 10 kilometers in my body” at that!

* have my mental and spiritual wellbeing in focus by:

  • reading at least 75 books, of which 12 in Swedish and 12 in English already have been chosen. These 12 + 12 I will be blogging about: Jampacked month indeed, have only finished reading three books during November. It’s been quite some time since I read that little! At the end of the month, I was on 65/75 books, and am still short the English book for the month (I did finish the one for October though!). Don’t panic (bokk 10 of 12 in English) and Utan invandring stannar Sverige (book 11 of 12 in Swedish).
  • learn at least five songs by heart including lyrics on the guitar, which will be made possible by my aim at ten minutes of guitar playing on a daily basis: Whoop whoop – have upped my game as a guitar student, because I’ve played my guitar every day in November, which hasn’t happened in a long time!
  • I will let the wonderful book The book of Awakening by Mark Nepo be my daily companion: Well… no. Even Mark has been hit by this month’s jam-packedness.
  • hold digital 24-hour sabbats at least twice a month: October turned into a weird month in relation to digital sabbat. I had one for the choir trip to Åre/Östersund on October 3-6, and 25-26 at that, and possibly 11-12th… but I am not 100% certain. So… I know one thing. I have not been as observant on this as I usually am. Perhaps that’s why I have been missing my digital sabbats these last few weeks? In November, I plan on digital sabbats on 8-9, 15-16 and 29-30th.
  • 12-13 (sabbat from pleasure-screen time, even though I went to visit a machine manufacturer in Germany these two days, so I did have quite some work-screen time), 15-16th and 29-30th of November. In December I plan for digital sabbats on 15-16, 19-20 and 30-31.

* have creation in focus by:

  • booking at least four two-day writing retreats during the year: These are the dates: 13-14 September, 28-28 October, 11-12 November, 9-10 December.I would have needed my soul sister Sara at home in November to make that writing retreat happen… On the other hand, it was very beneficial for me with two days of blocked time in my calendar, because I could use that time to deal with one emergency after another. And, as a bonus, I have a writing retreat booked for New Years!
  • keeping up with daily Facebook Lives for as long as there’s energy in doing it:
  • blog daily: No. Not even close. 3 Swedish and 3 English posts in November. 🤐
  • start to pod: Have cut 7 episodes with 15 to go… so I had better block off some calendar time for this work as well. The jampacked calendar had me make other priorities. October looks even worse, so I will block off 4th and 15th of November to get my pod up and running again. That didn’t help. Oh well, it will be, in due time. But, let’s not forget that I am moderating the pod Fria Barn which was released in November, and in December a couple of episodes of another pod I am a part of will also be released. [Note December 27th when this blog will be published in English: Nope, will be in January.] So I am podding, just not on my own Doing gentle with an edge.
  • release (at least) 4 e-books in 2019: There is now a started ebook on my computer, but nothing else has happened during November.

* have financial husbandry in focus by:

  • sowing, sowing and sowing a little bit more; on a weekly basis intentionally work on my various income streams: ✅
  • keep tabs on my set invoicing goal on a monthly basis: ✅I reached my set goals in January, March, August, October and in November! Whoop! Did not in February, April, May, June, July or September.
  • keep an accounts book on private income and expenses: ✅

And finally – on all levels – experiment and play, experience pleasure and exploring and challenging myself, all the while being gentle to myself: The few photos I’ve taken in November bear witness to the jam-packedness of November. I did finish off the Mastermind-group I’ve been facilitating since August, I have had quite a few cold baths with magnificent view’s, I’ve been darning socks with Pop the cat for company, attended Mozart’s Requiem with Skånes Dansteater at Malmö Opera (what a performance!), Rocketman sing-a-long-movie and restorative gong-baths at Yoga Kendra with H and finally, that emotional crescendo: Alma coming home after 10,5 months in Australia. I cried when she walked through customs at the airport and I was finally allowed to hug my firstborn. What a sensation!

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Homo Deus (book 11 of 12)

December 26, 2019
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“I encourage all of us, whatever our beliefs, to question the basic narratives of our world, to connect past developments with present concerns, and not to be afraid of controversial issues.” 

Thus Yuval Noah Harari starts Homo Deus, the book after Sapiens, followed by 21 lessons for the 21st century, a book I plan to read next year.

“The physicist Max Plank famously said that science advances one funeral at a time. He meant that only when one generation passes away do new theories have a chance to root out old ones. This is true not only of science.”

Homo Deus gave me some good tankespjärn I must admit. The historical retrospection into religion and science is thought-provoking and aha-generating at the same time, and the way Harari shines a light on the past, present and future make this a book well worth reading.

“Science is not just about predicting the future, though. Scholars in all fields often seek to broaden our horizons, thereby opening before us new and unknown futures. This is especially true of history. Though historians occasionally try their hand at prophecy (without notable success), the study of history aims above all to make us aware of possibilities we don’t normally consider. Historians study the past not in order to repeat it, but in order to be liberated from it.”

My copy of the book is filled with my notes in the margins, pertaining to many a different subject.
School. Religion in juxtaposition to science. Humanism. Artificial Intelligence.
Colonialism. Spirituality. Terrorism. Energy consumption.

“People are usually afraid of change because they fear the unknown. But the single greatest constant of history is that everything changes.”

Everything does change. And so I greatly enjoy reading books such as this one, that span the longer arcs of history and connects dots that I’ve not connected on my own. Helping me point out changes that I’ve not perceived.

“Fiction isn’t bad. It is vital. Without commonly accepted stories about things like money, states or corporations, no complex human society can function. […] But the stories are just tools. They should not become our goals or our yardsticks. When we forget that they are mere fiction, we lose touch with reality. Then we begin entire wars ‘to make a lot of money for the corporation’ or ‘to protect the national interests’. Corporations, money and nations exist only in our imagination. We invented them to serve us; why do we find ourselves sacrificing our lives in their service?”

Stories.
Personal stories. Communal stories. Cultural stories.
The stories I tell, the stories I listen to.
They all play a part in shaping me, making me into the person I am.

“Paradoxically, the more sacrifices we make for an imaginary story, the more tenaciously we hold on to it, because we desperately want to give meaning to these sacrifices and to the suffering we have caused.”

The greater my awareness is to their content and message, the more I am able to lead the life I want to.
I have a choice as to which stories I perpetuate, and so do you.


The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2019, to read and blog about 12 Swedish and 12 English books, one every other week, books that I already own.

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Advent Calendar – December 25, 2019

December 25, 2019
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In the background, you can see people lined up. Our fellow travelers were taking a group photo, one which made its way into a newsletter reporting on the customer trip of the year. Me and Lena… we’re not in it. Actually, there are pictures with us in it as well, we sort of slid in at the very end of the photo session… but those weren’t used. Oh well. We were busy with other things. Important things!

Human to human.
Grown-up to baby.
Soul to soul.

I was in communication with the mother. With the grandmother (?).
But more significantly, I was busy communicating with this little baby.
Three generations in one fell swoop.

Connection.
There’s nothing better!

Not surprisingly, this is yet another one of my favorite pictures from my Kenyan adventures in June 2019. It’s also the twenty-fifth photo I’ve shared with you, here, in my advent calendar. I have more. Many more. But it’s Christmas Day, and hence, the end of my calendar. I would like to say thank you to you who have accompanied me on this 25-day long re-visit to Kenya, I’ve greatly enjoyed it, and I hope you have too.

I hope I have inspired you to start to buy trees or to increase your tree-savings-scheme. Or at the very least, given you a bit of insight into various aspects of Kenyan agroforestry, the economical and ecological importance of trees, and the beauty of Kenya?

If you’ve yet to make a decision (a Yes is as welcome as a No, what I am after is a clearly communicated decision!) on whether or not to start to buy trees, let me know what the snag is. A question you would like answered? More information on how it all works? Whatever it is, reach out, and I will do what I can to help you reach a clear decision. Because I unashamedly want everyone to buy trees, and that includes you!


Advent Calendar for 2019: sharing pictures and stories/reflections from my trip to Kenya in June. I went to visit “my trees” and get a hands-on experience of the social entrepreneurship of the Kenyan forestry company that I buy trees through.

Full disclosure: I am proud to say I am both a customer and an ambassador for the company. If you are curious to find out more, let me know and I’ll gladly get in touch with you! Here’s my sponsored link: https://betterglobe.com/27216 

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Advent Calendar – December 24, 2019

December 24, 2019
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This was my first visit to Sub-Saharan Africa (and whatever trips I’ve made to northern Africa were 40+ years ago; water under the bridge!) and even though I wouldn’t claim to be extremely well-traveled, I’ve been to plenty a European country, to Thailand and Malaysia, to India quite a few times while working on a project a decade ago, and to North America.

There’s a feeling to each country I’ve visited. Sometimes open. Warm. Smiling and welcoming. Informal. Sometimes distancing. Reserved. Formal. The warmth and openness of the Kenyan people struck me;  no time during the trip had I any sense that I should keep my distance, avoid looking into eyes, laugh or touch. Not at all. Quite the opposite.

Walking down a narrow trail in the Seven Forks area to visit Simon Mulli, partner farmer of Better Globe, me and Lena came upon two women with babies. We stopped. Communicated wordlessly; gestures, smiles, winks. We asked May we take your picture? without actually voicing the question, and got a positive reply in return. I brought my Nikon to my eye, looked through the viewfinder, and was mesmerized by the piercing gaze that met me there.


Advent Calendar for 2019: sharing pictures and stories/reflections from my trip to Kenya in June. I went to visit “my trees” and get a hands-on experience of the social entrepreneurship of the Kenyan forestry company that I buy trees through.

Full disclosure: I am proud to say I am both a customer and an ambassador for the company. If you are curious to find out more, let me know and I’ll gladly get in touch with you! Here’s my sponsored link: https://betterglobe.com/27216 

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Advent Calendar – December 23, 2019

December 23, 2019
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Mukau.
It’s a beautiful tree.
This plot of mukau at the Nyongoro plantation reminds me of Swedish birch forests.

I’ve never really been one to dig deep into specific facts on trees, but I do have a thing for them. Have for a long time. As a funny aside, I’ve been married, twice. First marriage gave me the surname Skog, which is Swedish for forest. Second marriage had me go deeper, as Roth (in Swedish) is pronounced as the Swedish word for root. Perhaps my fondness for trees is yet one more reason why I’ve fallen so hard for this way to use my savings in this win-win-win-scheme?

Going on the customer trip in June, I certainly learned a lot more about the Mukau, or Melia volkensii as it’s named in Latin. It’s a hardwood tree, in the same family as mahogany. It’s native to these parts of Kenya. It was at risk of disappearing, due to over-exploitation on account of its durability and excellent qualities, but is now on the rise, rapidly. Better Globe Forestry’s tree expert Jan Vandenabeele plays a part in that, which you can see in the acknowledgments of the Kenya Forest Service Guideline to On-Farm Melia volkensii, Growing in the Dryland Areas of Kenya

As a hardwood, it warrants a higher price on the raw material market than many other types of timber, but Better Globe Forestry does not intend to sell the wood as raw material. Rather, they are looking at setting up a sawmill, to ensure the refinement of the wood stays local. Given the richness of the African continent when it comes to natural resources, it’s a continent that should be wealthy. But it’s just this fact, that raw materials are removed rather than refined on-site, which has enriched so many other countries outside of Africa, especially those who’ve previously had colonies. Keeping the value-adding-chain in the country will lead to more job opportunities. And in a country of high unemployment, that’s a definitive plus!


Advent Calendar for 2019: sharing pictures and stories/reflections from my trip to Kenya in June. I went to visit “my trees” and get a hands-on experience of the social entrepreneurship of the Kenyan forestry company that I buy trees through.

Full disclosure: I am proud to say I am both a customer and an ambassador for the company. If you are curious to find out more, let me know and I’ll gladly get in touch with you! Here’s my sponsored link: https://betterglobe.com/27216 

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Advent Calendar – December 22, 2019

December 22, 2019
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As we finished up snapping selfies with the youngsters of the primary school next to Kaewa Secondary School which really was the reason for our visit, I and Lena slowly walked back towards Kaewa, getting ready to board the bus and continue our adventurous journey. As we did, this girl followed us and gently tapped my shoulder. As I turned towards her, she dropped her gaze, and said, shyly:

Could I have my picture taken too?

I melted. Lena melted.
And of course, we snapped shots of her with both of us, respectively.
The young girl seemed happy that we took her up on her request, and after a few minutes, we went our separate ways.

On another note, I don’t know if the sweaters are part of the school uniforms all the time, or if this is the winter edition. Kenya is south of the equator, hence, technically winter during our visit in June. The weather was lovely, like a really lovely Swedish summer, with temperatures around 27 degrees Celcius. In Malindi, which is where we swam in the ocean, it was 3-4 degrees warmer, with ocean temperatures of 26-27 degrees.


Advent Calendar for 2019: sharing pictures and stories/reflections from my trip to Kenya in June. I went to visit “my trees” and get a hands-on experience of the social entrepreneurship of the Kenyan forestry company that I buy trees through.

Full disclosure: I am proud to say I am both a customer and an ambassador for the company. If you are curious to find out more, let me know and I’ll gladly get in touch with you! Here’s my sponsored link: https://betterglobe.com/27216 

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Advent Calendar – December 21, 2019

December 21, 2019
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The magic of this place!
Kenya. Kilaguni Serena Safari Lodge, inside Tsavo West National Park.
At sunset, with the view of the lit water hole.
As we stood there, birds came to drink, varying kinds of antelope, big and small animals of all kinds… and then, all of a sudden, an elephant.

It seemed so surreal.
Sure, I’d seen elephants earlier in the day, and yet.
Here, right in front of our noses, an elephant coming to have an evening drink, as we were doing the same, getting ready for dinner.

I FaceTimed my children back home in Sweden but they had a fairly lackadaisical attitude to it all. Desperate to share this with someone back home, I called my wives of sorts (yes, that’s what we call ourselves! There’s four of us and we’ve been a tightknit band ever since the days of the Twitter-born movement #skolvåren – which translates into school-spring – in 2013). And, as always, I knew I could trust them to match my wondrous state of mind, at witnessing this grandeur.

What a journey this trip turned out to be.
A journey of insights and new knowledge.
Greater understanding as well as gratitude towards life.
Friendships and new bonds formed with my fellow travel companions as well as our gracious hosts.
Laughter and singing and the occasional tear.
Erosion-stricken semi-arid lands, wildlife in the national park, a few hours of absolute relaxation at the splendid beaches of Malindi.
The plantations. The partner farmers.
The schools and microfinance banks.

A journey that is the result of a number of decisions made, starting with me buying my first trees in November of 2015.
Becoming an ambassador a year later.
Not really doing anything until yet another year had passed.
And then, slowly, getting more and more into it, simply because there’s so much about this that attracts me.

The path I’ve taken doesn’t have to be the path for everyone though. You can easily put aside a bit of your savings to buy trees – as a one-time-gig or monthly – and not think more of it than you do with your other forms of savings. But sitting here, getting to revisit Kenya again, thanks to this advent calendar, I am very happy that I did take on a more active engagement because this is not a trip that will ever be forgotten!


Advent Calendar for 2019: sharing pictures and stories/reflections from my trip to Kenya in June. I went to visit “my trees” and get a hands-on experience of the social entrepreneurship of the Kenyan forestry company that I buy trees through.

Full disclosure: I am proud to say I am both a customer and an ambassador for the company. If you are curious to find out more, let me know and I’ll gladly get in touch with you! Here’s my sponsored link: https://betterglobe.com/27216 

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Advent Calendar – December 20, 2019

December 20, 2019
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This is me.
My hands.
Planting a (ceremonial) tree at the Nyongoro plantation, with the help of one of the workers, an older gentleman in overalls.

It’s one of my favorite photos from the journey, one I have as the locked-screen-wallpaper on my iPhone, ever since I got back at the beginning of July. Whenever I grab a hold of my phone – which, truth be told, and likely to no surprise, is something I do quite often – I am reminded of how impactful my visit to Kenya was, and still is, for me. New perspectives, the reality of other people, bearing witness to everyday struggles that I have never encountered living in Sweden, and not least, a chance to meet the people behind the company whose vision I wholeheartedly support: To eradicate poverty and corruption in Africa.

One way to help eradicate poverty is to help farmers keep their soil viable. At 21 degrees Celcius, the soil is 100% viable. At 40 degrees C, only 15% of the soil functionality remains. At 60 degrees… it’s 100% dead. There is no life in the soil then, all microbes have died off. Unfortunately, 40-60 degrees of soil temperatures are far from uncommon in Africa.

Planting trees, not only helps protect the soil from erosion thanks to the root systems of the trees, but the canopy of them literally works like sun umbrellas, protecting the soil from heating to those lethal temperatures from the unrelenting sun. This is one reason why it’s such an improvement of farmers’ situations when they contract with Better Globe Forestry to become partner farmers and plant trees on the very same land that they already – and continuously – plant cash crops on. The lowered temperatures mean that soil of partial viability within a few years bounce back and thrive, giving higher returns on their cash crops. Smart huh?

Through the donation packages I purchase monthly, I ensure that partner farmers not only get to tend my trees which, as you understand from the reasoning above, is of benefit for them, they actually receive a tree for themselves for each tree of mine. If you want to start your own monthly contribution to this fantastic and life-changing work, start a monthly subscription. And if you need help, reach out!


Advent Calendar for 2019: sharing pictures and stories/reflections from my trip to Kenya in June. I went to visit “my trees” and get a hands-on experience of the social entrepreneurship of the Kenyan forestry company that I buy trees through.

Full disclosure: I am proud to say I am both a customer and an ambassador for the company. If you are curious to find out more, let me know and I’ll gladly get in touch with you! Here’s my sponsored link: https://betterglobe.com/27216 

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