Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Loki-Trickster God



God of Hokey Pokey and one of the world's major Trickster Gods.

Loki was a rascal; crafty, sneaky, silly and malicious. The son of two Giants, he was so outrageously mischievous that he even sneaked his way into becoming a God. He was the first Anti-Hero, quick-witting his way out of  tight corners and confrontations caused by his own misdeeds.

Lokis'  first escapade was in true form. When the Gods were struggling to build Åsgard, they ran out of funds.  All the basic construction had been completed but they needed a large wall to keep out all the riff-raff.


Loki came up with the plan of contracting a giant to do the job. As payment, and only if he managed to complete his work on schedule, the giant asked for the Goddess Freya. The Gods were not too sure. "Don't worry," advised Loki. "He'll never manage it on his own, even if he works night and day. We'll just let him keep the wheelbarrow or something."


Alas, the giant was not on his own. He had a huge stallion called Svadilfari, which could haul boulders like there was no tomorrow. With three days to go, Freya was in distress and the Gods aghast.


Now Loki, like fire and smoke, was a shape-shifter. A talent he'd developed to make him the shiftiest rascal of all time. So he changed himself into a mare and seduced the Giant's stallion. The both of them  pranced off into the woods,  and Svadilfari was led far away from the stone pile.


With his horse missing, the Giant didn't quite make the schedule. Seething with rage, he tried to take Freya by force but unfortunatly for him Thor came along and cracked his skull with his famous hammer.


Meanwhile Loki was having a fine old time frolicking in the fields. In fact he became pregnant, and gave birth to a fine baby boy stallion with eight legs. He gave this as a gift to ODIN and it was called Sleipnir.


Loki was now well in with Odin and his son Thor, with whom he shared numerous adventures. Thor, the perfect fall guy, was even once persuaded to appear in drag as the prospective bride of a giant. That is another story. Thor could always be relied on to supply the muscle when corners became too tight for Lokis' trickery.


Loki also had many run-ins with the dwarves, which he cheated at any opportunity until they stitched his mouth shut, which kept him quiet for quite some time. That is my cue for now. There are so many stories of Loki that they could fill a book. Do you know anyone like him? 

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Catch a Fire, Win a World


Pack your bags and get ready to go on tour with Captain Ninja Alex Cavanaugh. This blog tour to promote his new book Cassa Fire runs from February 27 through March 9. Anyone who comments on his blog posts during that time can win a special package from his publisher that promises to take you to another world. A copy of CassaFire, CassaStar, a large tote bag, and a mug are the prizes that should get you started on your journey. 

CassaFire is the sequel to CassaStar and it promises to be just as exciting and full of adventure as its predecessor.  If you fell in love with his characters in his first book you are sure to love them even more after reading this sequel. Tune up the orchestra and prepare yourself for a Space Opera that you will never forget. Here is a copy of the  blog tour, hope to see you on the road.

CassaFire review:
“This is a book of inner and outer journeys, of inner and outer adventures, mysteries and revelations. It is also a book of friendship, relationship and equality. CassaStar is the cake. CassaFire is the cherry.” - Edi’s Book Lighthouse

 On another note, my computer has crashed and burned so I am on a loaner, hopefully it will get fixed soon. Until then I am not sure
how often I will be able to get online.


Monday, February 27, 2012

Space Fire Ninja- Complete GIBBERISH

Minnie is suffering from her date with Oscar which started here in Norway at 1 am on the red carpet, and ended at 6 am under a blanket. On her way to another party she stopped by to drop off the gibberish she has been chewing on all week-end. It gave her quite a bit of heartburn!

"I'd like to get extremely close and incredibly loud with that Frenchman!Leaving Oscar - we got nothing in common anymore!"

Space Fire Ninja

Fire flying over to the boundless space of a song, captured an adventure and set it free. As it stared in to the smoke of a Ninja it felt like a delicate chocolate cream pie floating down into an eternal abyss, an incredible essence tried to turn it into a mist of ice. Only by taking a looong look at the ocean did it dance around in triangles to the tune of "Roll out the barrel" and off it was to find a mate. It soared over the ocean and plunged into its depths, upon finding a squid sadness that so many more adventures were yet tied to the notes of a song.

Yes, sadness as it had no arms to play the music. But wait! By suing it's cream filling it could be the air, or trees falling. The blue forest came undone like the earth had tilted westward toward the tribes of the Inubi people, with their huge cloaks made of black silk and white feathers sharps as samari swords. Their huge elaborate birdcage hairstyles swayed like glittering threads as they surrounded the space of a song and threw it into the dreams of a fire ninja where it belonged.

The talented members of CPSWA that have written this Gibberish in order are:


Shelly











Minnie



On another note, does anyone else think it strange that a silent movie, (where in my opinion a dog stole the leading role) won the Oscar this year for best picture? I tried to watch that movie, but to be honest if I wanted to watch subtitles in black and white, I would watch a foreign film.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Pass it on

Sending my pet fish to do the dirty work

Usually I like to spend the weekends reading others blogs and do not post, but today I got caught up in tag so here are the answers to probably more than my share of questions.

You see, I am confused and I have no point of reference. I have played tag in this “Web Pool” before but the rules were a bit different. Link to the person that tagged you, and the people you tag and pass around the same questions. My busy schedule has kept me out of the loop for this ”Platform Tag”  I have not been playing, so sorry if you have tagged me before and I have raised my hands in surrender. Since this is a good way to get familiar with other platform builders I decided to be a good sport and pass the torch by answering the questions given by Traci Kenworth and K.S. Collier. I have also added some of my own. If you are tagged, feel free to answer the ones you like and pass them on to others. Since I seem to have no rules to follow, how many is up to you. Pass on only the questions you want answered, answer only the questions you want to answer. 

Original questions by Traci Kenworth (sorry, no link)

Coffee or tea?---Coffee

What was the first story you can remember writing?---A Christmas Story

What TV show, video game, movie would you recommend to other writers?---Game of thrones, do not play video games, Lord of the Rings

What time of day are you most productive? When I am alone, whenever that might be

Green or black olives?---Both

What was your first car?---1966 ford Mustang

What is your guilty pleasure?---“smoking”

Are you a fan of footie pajamas? ---Not a fan of pajamas, any kind.
What's something you didn't think you'd like that you did/do?---My husband

Favorite salad dressing?----Ranch

What is your most embarrassing nickname? (Or, just any nickname. You don't have to give an embarrassing one.)----Used to call myself Steve, because everyone pronounced my name wrong. Now that I live in Norway, I dropped the nickname because everyone here in Norway can pronounce it right.

Questions by K.S. Collier http://www.kscollier1.blogspot.com/

What do you write, fiction or nonfiction?---I write, therefor I am…

What are your favorite sweets? Chocolate, but do not really have a sweet tooth

How often do you write? Every day

Do you write by outlining first, or by the seat of your pants? Outlining and then the seat of my pants

Do you use foreshadowing to strengthen your plotline? Yes

Who is your favorite author? Do not have one, have many—One favorite is J.R.R. Tolkien

What is your favorite movie or movie series? Lord of the Rings

What genre do you write? Several

Name your future pet, and describe them? Would never have one

What is your all-time favorite character, whether your own or someone else's? Frodo Baggins the Hobbit

Do you have a stuffed animal in your possession, if so, what type? No, I collect rocks.

Questions by Me:

Do you use Word Verification and why? (Better check first)

When visiting a Blog what bothers you most about the format?

Do you have your email address listed on your profile, if not, why?

How often do you post?

Are you on Facebook or Google plus?

How often do you check your stats?

What influences what you right about?

What is the most important thing that happened to you last year?

If you could go anywhere, where would you go?

If you could talk to a dead person about writing, who would that be?

What one thing in the grocery store do you always want to buy? I cannot help but collect new spices.

My pet Catfish has passed the stick to:


See you on Monday with the finished Gibberish Tale that Minnie started and the CPSWA continued. You guys are getting good at making Minnie think outside the box! Enjoy your week-end.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Space Fire Ninja-GIBBERISH

It is the last Friday of the month and Minnie wants to play. You guessed it, time for some gibberish. So all you CONTROLLED PATRIOTS OF STANDARD WORD ABUSE, gather your weapons, sharpen your tongues and let the game begin.
New to this click HERE

Confession time Minnie----
“OK, so what if I have a thing for Ninjas!”



Space Fire Ninja

Fire flying over to the boundless space of a song, captured an adventure and set it free. As it stared in to the smoke of a Ninja it felt… 

(YOUR TURN)

Finished game results on Monday the 27th. 



Thursday, February 23, 2012

Everything you always wanted to know about Minnie, but were afraid to ask

Meet Minnie:
Minnie usually wears Red, but sometimes she may surprise you

This is Minnie. She may look tough but actually she is quite insecure. That is probably why she is such a grumpy old thing. I met Minnie years ago on the internet, where she came from before that I do not know. She seemed to be hiding out, homeless and ignored. Whenever I found myself cruising around in the image ghetto looking for a fix, I would run into her. Finally she just followed me home and has been living in my photos ever since.
 
Every now and then Minnie likes to come out to play a game, share her opinions, or just be nasty. She likes to point out others insecurities and often she tells me that I am not good enough, that I do everything wrong, that no one likes me. She tells me that I am selfish and that I should not spend so much time at my computer or on my hobbies. She tells me that I should study more, clean more, pay more attention to my family, and make more money. She also likes to point out all my bad habits and she teases me constantly. “Eat better, you are gaining weight, do you really need that chocolate now?" She spits out words like venom and tells me, “You look like an old hippie, get your hair cut and colored, put on some make-up and wear something other than jogging pants!” 

I really hate Minnie sometimes and have tried to get rid of her more then once. Just when I think she is gone, she turns up once again pointing her finger and yelling, “Do you want to end up like me, old and grumpy, and stuck in a strange laptop?” I never seem to know when she will appear. Let me tell you, I could really use a vacation from Minnie. If you could just take her off my hands for a while that would be great. Just copy and paste her into your photos, Minnie likes to travel. 

Minnie has some unusual friends. Einar, Frida and Bert call themselves Minnies groupies and they are as irritating as mosquitoes. Just ignore them when they start buzzing around inside your head, telling you that everything Minnie says is true. Her words of wisdom are referred to as Minnie-isms.

Frida, Einar and Bert


Minnies groupies have decided that they want Minnie to stick around so they decided that Minnie should have her own fan club.

The CPSWA is short for Controlled Patriots of Standard Word Abuse. These Patriots are fluent in Giggerish, hard headed, stubborn and willing to speak their mind even if what they say is not always liked by others. Are you someone like that, or do you want to be? If so then join Minnies fan club. It's easy, just post her fan club banner on your blog (if that is your thing) and play gibberish at least once. NOTE: NO LINK NEEDED!  This is a state of mind, not anything else, sharing the love is optional. 

Members names will be added to this list as they join in the Minnie fun. Gibberish is played and hosted by Minnie the last Friday of every month. Lets see what words of wisdom or "Minnie-ism" she has to say about this.

Minnie-ism:

"What have Gus, Frida and Einar gotten me into now! Dagnabbit, who gives a Jimminy cricket what I got to say? "



Some Stuff for your page:


Take a look at some gibberish created by the CPSWA by clicking HERE
How to play Gibberish ---Click HERE


Minnie News:

Minnie will once again be making her appearance during the whole month of April for the A-Z challenge.

Minnie is starting her own mailing list to keep members up to date on all Minnie news as well as special surprises. If you would like to be on her Mailing list please e-mail me or tell me in the comment box below.
Next Gibberish Game starts: Friday February 24, 2012 completed game posted on Monday, and on Tuesday something is Catching on Fire!


Odin-Father of the Gods

Odin

Odin was Married to Frigg and their family inclduded, Baldur, Hod, Hermoth, Thor and Vidar. Together they were the chief divinity of the Norse pantheon, the foremost of the Aesir. 

Odin had to put himself through some very rigorous ordeals to become the great God that he was. One of these ordeals included the sacrifice of one of his eyes. Mimir was an ancient being noted for his wisdom. Mimir was the guardian of a sacred well (known as Mimir’s Well) that gave knowledge to those who drank from it. Odin so coveted wisdom that he gave up one of his eyes to Mimir to gain the privilege of drinking from the well. Mimir placed the eye in the well, where it shone as brilliantly as the Moon.

The well of wisdom lied under the second root of Yggdrasil, which allowed the Dew of Knowledge to seep into it. So Odin stabbed himself with his own spear and hung himself on the tree for nine days and nights. He was then allowed a peep, and saw magic runes appear on rocks beneath him.With a superhuman effort he lifted them and running his eye over the mystic symbols, he was instantly freed of all encumbrances. Restored and rejuvenated with everlasting vigour he droped lightly to the ground. His ordeal accomplished, Odin was at last able to drink from Mimirs well, making him the wisest of all.

Odins self-sacrifice gave him knowledge of the runes, the Norse symbols used for writing and fortune-telling. Yet although Odin was wise, he could also be sly and treacherous. It was not unusual, for example, for him to break his word or to turn people against each other to start conflicts.

Odin's attributes were the spear Gungnir, which never missed its target, the ring Draupnir, from which every ninth night eight new rings appeared, and his eight-footed horse Sleipnir. He was accompanied by the wolves Freki and Geri, to whom he gave his food for, he only consumed wine or mead.
 

Odin could make the dead speak in order to question the wisest amongst them. His hall was Åsgard and Valaskjalf ("shelf of the slain")  was where his throne Hlidskjalf was located. From this throne he could observe all that happened in the nine worlds. The tidings were brought to him by his two raven Huginn and Muninn. He also resided in Valhalla, where the slain warriors were taken. If you think a wise one-eyed Norse super power on an eight-legged horse would be easy to recognise you would be wrong because one of Odins many talents was that he could shape-change, and travel incognito under a variety of false names and shapes.

Sharing  God status with brothers Ve and Vili, the Great Odin helped bring the world as we know it into being.. The legend tells that in the ice-laden wastes of Nifleheim, he got into an extreme snowball fight with Ymir, the king of the Frost giants. Ymir was slashed into pieces and Odin made the world from all the left over bits and pieces. On the day of the final battle, it is said that Odin will be killed by Lokis pet wolf Fenrir.



Wednesday, February 22, 2012

CAPTCHA, WHAT?

  
What does it even mean? Once again I feel the need to address the issue of Spam control and Robot Proof Word Verification. With all the Blogfests and various blog celebrations, I would love to comment on as many blogs as possible. What is sure to stop me is Word Verification. There is nothing more frustrating then taking the time to read and think about a good comment, then having to decipher a lot of letters that do not make sense (that is if you can even make out what they are.)
Can you make out what this word is? If not, how many times are you willing to try? Please take off word verification! You want more traffic to your blog and I want to comment. Surely I am not alone. How many of you are robots?
Borrowed from a post on Facebook by Matthew MacNish
Blogger does catch most of the Spam! Do you even know if you have Word Verification on? I am sure that some of you are not aware and if you have been wondering why you do not have as much traffic as you should, maybe this is the reason. I tend to avoid blogs that I know are using this feature. Let's face it, most of us have a limited amount of time to spend. We don't want to spend it being accused of robot activity or inflicting pain on ourselves. (Such as hair pulling) Does any one else have an opinion on this? I would love to hear it!

Removing Word Verification
Note: The new Blogger interface does not have the option to turn off word verification. You have to click on the gear-looking thing in the upper right hand corner ("Blogger Options" if you mouse over it), and select "Old Blogger Interface." Then these instructions should work for you as well.

1- Go to your dashboard
2-Click on the SETTINGS in the blog you want to remove word verification from
3-Click on Comments
4-Scroll down just a little bit and you will see "Show word verification on comments" Click NO
*Right above this you can choose to moderate your comments.. if you want to read them before they go "live" to your blog click Yes

Thors Gift to Freyja

Norwegian Goddess of Love

Freyja is the most passionate of all the Norse Goddesses. Not surprising since she is the goddess of love and lust. Her passions were abundant, vigorous, and unrestrained, my kind of girl.  There are many faces to Freyja, but today I would like to tell you a story about Thors gift to Freyja

Freyja is often seen riding her golden chariot through the skies pulled by two large blue cats. What you may not know is that these cats were a gift from Thor. He wanted to please Freyja after angering her one morning. Freyja was upset with him for awakening her from her beauty sleep with his boisterous and noisy preparations to "go fishing" for a sea dragon.

While he was on the way to his fishing spot, Thor kept hearing lovely song-like noises that seemed to be lulling him to sleep. Stopping to investigate the source of the odd sounds, he found them coming from a nest of mewing blue kittens being tended by a tomcat. The sound that Thor had heard was the male cat singing to the kittens, "Sleep, sleep, my dear little ones". Thor thundered at the cat and demanded that he stop singing the lullaby. The cat was not impressed and sassed him back. “You have no idea how difficult it is for a single-parent male to rear his children.” The cat tilted his head and with a mischievous grin he purred softly and asked, “Might you know a women who would be willing to take them in?”
Immediately Freya came to mind, and Thor agreed to take them to her. Like all cats, this one was not quick to show his appreciation. The Tomcat meowed at Thor, “My children are very unique. They are blue cats and deserved an especially fine home.” Thor took offense at the comment and thundered back at the cat who not the least impressed, bared his claws, turned into a bird and flew away.

Freyja was enchanted with Thor's present and did the kittens honor by letting them accompany her on her daily rounds across the sky. Thor on the other hand was rewarded for his gift with the passion of Freyja. For one whole week the skies lit up in amazing colors of blue and violet, and the thundering sounds of Thor and Freyjas passion could be heard through all of Åsgard.


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Killing the Fat Man

The Fat Mans Disguise

Now who of you out there want to lose some of that fat that has set up residency around different parts of your body? With summer on its way, it won’t be long before we are shedding our clothes and it would be nice to shed off some of that excess weight as well. Common sense tells you that there is no fast lane to that slimmer and more attractive you, but if someone tells you that there is a way then you want to believe them. Am I right? Well that is where the fat man steps in and grabs your attention. The fat man I am speaking of lives in the disguise of a beautiful slim woman who tells you how fat she used to be before she tried this miracle and proven product.

This fat man lives all over the internet and is getting trickier at getting your attention. He knows just when to strike, who to aim after, and which words of seduction to use. Now I have trained myself well to avoid looking at these ads while waiting for pages to load, but I was finally caught in the fat mans’ net and lured into a “Try it, you are under no obligation” and other such promises fantasy land. The fat mans’ diet is our vulnerability and he gets fat with our money. This time my money, as I swallowed the words fed me and clicked the fatal send button.


What I got in the mail were pills to speed up my metabolism and stable my blood sugar, as well as patches to wear that would “Detox” me and get rid of all that evil stored in my body. Hey, it was free and I was under no obligation to continue my subscription. Happily I swallowed a pill with my meal and spent the whole night feeling sick. The next day a skeptical me researched this miracle pill and found others that experienced the same thing. They also warned about trying to cancel their subscription with exhausting results and a much emptier wallet. No way was I going to fall into that trap so I wrote the company and cancelled any future packages of misery. That is when I found out that I was under obligation to buy one package at full price before cancelling any future orders. Stupid, that’s me, and I should have done the research first. In a hurry to swallow a miracle I just jumped right into the fat mans’ Net and like a fish out of water, I should have known better.


Let my lesson be one to you. Do not believe the Fat man; do not click on his promises while you are waiting to download. Stay away from companies like Formlife, and promises like Corexin and Life Detox. The only way to kill the fat man is to ignore him. We both know that there is no way to lose those extra pounds other than a healthy diet and exercise. Don’t let the fat man fool you too.




Back to mythology tomorrow, just couldn't stop myself from writing this today.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Street Corner


This caught my attention and I thought to myself, "Oh no...Is it that time already?  Yes, it's time for the First Campaign Challenge of the 4th campaign!  Here is the challenge:
Write a short story/flash fiction story in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, including a poem. 
Begin the story with the words, “Shadows crept across the wall”. These five words will be included in the word count. 
If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional), do one or more of these:end the story with the words: "everything faded." (also included in the word count)include the word "orange" in the story.write in the same genre you normally write make your story 200 words exactly!

In a panic I searched through my notebook of scattered ideas and here is my entry:

 Street Corner

Shadows crept across the wall. She watched them in fascination as she swallowed the pills. Her orange nail polish was chipped, her stockings torn and her cheap dress barely clung to her body. She was mans' every tattered dream and not proud of it. Night after night she waited in the same shadows for someone or something else to come along. The cold and the hunger dodged her attention; all that remained real were the corners on the street in front of her and the sound of her breath. Tonight she felt lucky. There was something strange in the air, something else was coming, and when it turned the corner she caught her breath in surprise.

Beauty floated towards her on a haunting melody and everything stopped to listen. Rats held each others  tails; their meals still stuck in their teeth glistened in the streetlight. Foreign bugs stopped their chattering and sat quietly on the wet pavement. Even the air stopped breathing and yesterdays’ news clung to brick walls with ink stained pages. Beauty was no stranger to this street, its name was death and it knew where it was going as it approached her...so at last, everything faded.

Thors Hammer

One day Thor woke up to find that his hammer Mjøllnir was missing. In a panic Thor turned to his friend Loki, and told him about the stolen hammer. Thor suspected the giants in Jøtunheimr, so devising a plan the two then went to Freyja. They asked her if they could borrow her feather cloak in order to find Mjøllnir. Freyja, still mourning the loss of her beloved agreed, and Loki flew off in Freyjas feather cloak in search of Mjøllnir.

In Jøtunheimr, theJøtunn king Thrymr sat on a burial mound, plaiting golden collars for his female dogs. Thrymr seeing Loki asked him why Loki was traveling alone in the Jøtunheimr. Suspecting that he would get an answer, Loki told him about Thor's missing hammer. Thrymr said to Loki that he should return to the Gods with the following message, that he had hidden Mjøllnir eight leagues beneath the earth, and that it would be returned only if Freyja was brought before him to become his wife.

When Loki returned he found Thor and gave him Thrymrs message. The two then went to Freyja, and told her to dress herself in a bridal head dress, so they could drive her to Jøtunheimr and collect Mjøllnir. Freyja, indignant and angry, went into a rage, causing all of the halls of the Æsir to tremble in her anger, she refused which should not have come as any surprise.

As a result, the gods held a meeting to discuss and debate the matter. The god Heimdallr came up with a genius suggestion putting forth the idea that, in place of Freyja, Thor could be dressed as the bride, complete with jewels, women's clothing, a bridal head-dress, and the necklace Brísingamen. Thor rejected the idea, but Loki reminded him that this would be the only way to get back Mjøllnir, and pointed out that without Mjøllnir, the jøtnar would be able to invade and settle in Åsgard. The gods dressed Thor as a bride, and Loki went with Thor as his maid to Jøtunheimr.

The two disguised bandits arrive in Jøtunheimr. Thrymr commanded the jøtnar in his hall to spread straw on the benches, for Freyja had arrived to be his wife. Thrymr recounted his treasured animals and objects, stating that Freyja was all that he was missing in his wealth.

Early in the evening, the disguised Loki and Thor met in the hall with Thrymr and the assembled jøtnar. Thor ate and drank ferociously, he consumed entire animals and three casks of mead. Thrymr thought the behavior was at odds with his impression of Freyja, and Loki, sitting before Thrymr and appearing as a "very shrewd maid", made the excuse that "Freyja's" behaviour was due to the fact that she had not eaten anything for the eight days before arriving due to her eagerness. Thrymr then lifted "Freyja's" veil to kiss  "her" until he caught the terrifyed eyes that stared back at him, burning with fire. Loki stated that this was because "Freyja" had not slept for eight nights in her eagerness.

The sister of the jøtnar appeared,  and asked for   "Freyjas" bridal gift, and then the jøtnar brought out Mjøllnir to "sanctify the bride."  Thor laughed inside when he saw the hammer, he took hold of it, striked Thrymr down, and killed all of the jøtnar. Taking his mighty hammer in hand he returned home in his chariot. It was quite a site to see him as he rode back into Åsgard still dressed as Freyja and by his side Loki as his maid.

My Norwegian Mythology week continues tomorrow. Have a nice day and beware of men in dresses with a big hammer.

Friday, February 17, 2012

What's New?

  
Forced out of hibernation, these next few weeks are going to be busy ones for me, as I help my son arrange a Banzai- con convention taking place here in Larvik during April.What is Banzai-con? I will get into the details at a later date, but basically it is a convention for those interested in Anime/Japanese Culture. The 500 tickets are sold out and there is a lot of work to be done. For me that means planing and feeding 120 volunteers, as well as several guest bands for an entire week-end. You should expect to hear a lot about that in my blog during March. Then as probably most of you know, there are many bloggers involved in the A-Z challenge for the month of April, myself included. 

Because of this busy schedule I will be re-posting some Norwegian Culture and Mythology starting off with our friend Thor. If you are a fan of the movie, then you should be excited to know that a sequel will be coming out soon. Also I plan on taking you on a small trip to TV land and "Lillyhammer," a new series starring ex-"Soprano" cast member and "E-Street Band" member Steve van Zandt. You can find this series on Netflix and I recommend  you to check it out if you can. 

So now that I have told you what is new in my world, tell me what is new in yours. For those of you that would like to get acquainted with a different side of Thor than the movie depicted, I hope you enjoy these next few posts of mine. In the mean time, have a great week-end!


Thor-God of Thunder

Son of Odin and Jord, he's the famous Scandinavian God with Hammer, the burly red-bearded Lord of Thunderstorms. He rides through the storm clouds in a chariot pulled by goats and throws his hammer Mjollnir all over the place to create lightning.As perhaps you might expect, he's not terribly bright and Loki was always leading him astray. But they were  friends and was always ready to bash Lokis enemies with the  end of his hammer. Thor seems to have been the best loved and most worshiped of the Norse deities. He belonged to the common people, while Odin appealed to the learned and noble classes. A patron of farmers, Thor was associated with weather and crops. Although he could be fearsome, many myths portray him in a comic and affectionate way.


Thor appears throughout Norse Mythology as a huge, strongly built, red-bearded fellow with a huge appetite.  His wife was the beautiful goddess Sif, who seldom appears in myths and remains a somewhat mysterious figure. Generally good-natured, Thor had a hot temper, and his anger was dreadful to behold. He was a fierce enemy of the frost giants, the foes of the Norse gods. When people heard thunder and saw lightning in the sky, they knew that Thor was fighting evil giants.


The thunder god's chief weapon was his mighty hammer Mjollnir, or Crusher, which the dwarfs had forged for him. When he threw Mjollnir, it returned magically to his hand like a boomerang. Among Mjollnir's other powers was the gift of restoring life to the dead. The connection of Thor's hammer with life and fertility gave rise to the old Norse customs of placing a hammer in a bride's lap at her wedding and of raising it over a newborn child.

Thor's treasures also included a magical belt that doubled his strength whenever he wore it and a pair of goats, Tanngniost and Tanngrisni (both "Toothgnashers"), that pulled his chariot across the sky. Whenever he was overcome with hunger, Thor would devour his goats, only to return them to life with Mjollnir.


According to one well-known myth about Thor, Thrym, king of the giants, came into possession of Mjollnir and declared that he would give it back to Thor only if the beautiful goddess Freyja agreed to marry him. She angrily refused, and the trickster god Loki came up with a clever plan to recover Mjollnir. Using women's clothing and a bridal veil to disguise Thor as Freyja, Loki escorted "Freyja" to Jotunheim, the home of the giants. Thrym greeted his bride, though he was surprised at her appetite at the wedding feast. "Freyja" consumed an entire ox, three barrels of wine, and much more. Loki explained that she had been unable to eat for a week because of her excitement at marrying Thrym. The giant accepted this explanation, and the wedding proceeded. When the time came for a hammer to be placed in the bride's lap according to custom, Thor grabbed Mjollnir and threw off his disguise. Then he used the hammer to smash the giants and their hall.


More stories about Thor next week.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

My Darling Someone


Not so very long ago a friend of mine was talking about writing his profile for an online dating service, "just in case." Now I know that he is happily married and was not really planning on using any such service, but the thought of him ever having to join the "dating game" terrified him. I don't blame him. I have been happily married for many years which today is nothing short of a miracle. Even couples getting married seem to be a rare thing. There are more obituaries in the papers than wedding announcements. I have been thinking a lot about love lately, not surprising considering the time of year it is and the date on todays calendar. Love is starting to look like fast food. Online dating, and flirting in a make believe world through an avatars eyes is an easy hook up. Look around you; chances are that you know at least one couple that has met through the screen of "Data Matchmaker." I don't know, maybe this is a good thing. Maybe falling in love has become nothing more than a processor, and when the thrill is gone another model comes along. Has the world got a shortage of romance, are we running out of love? Do young people even know what love is? So I sat myself down and decided to write a letter to my unborn grandchild.

My darling someone,

Close your eyes and know that I have been thinking about you even before you were born. You are only a dream of mine today, but someday maybe these words will find you in a real world, whether I am there with you or not. There is so much that I would like to share with you; time, places, people, things, feelings and thoughts. A tapestry of everything that is important to me. Trust me; take my hand and I will show you what love is made out of. Its fabric is the most important thing I could ever share with you. There is a place inside your heart where all things are possible, where dreams are born and courage is found. You could get there without me but you could never get there alone. 

Every day there are so many discoveries to make, some grand some rather simple. It is the simple things in life that tend to please the most. Feel passion in the things in life that give you pleasure and you will find them everywhere. In the sounds of day and night, pleasure is laughter when you hear children playing, the birds singing, the wind in the trees, the rain against hot pavement, a fire crackling. Pleasure is love pressed into passion. The silent sounds of night such as soft moans, or the gentle humming of utilities and the even breathing of the body next to you in bed. Pleasure is the unexpected kiss and the way your lover reaches for your hand. It is the smile from a stranger a letter from a friend, the way a puppy cuddles up next to you, and the way you feel when you come in from the cold. It is looking into the eyes of someone and knowing that everything is going to be alright.  Pleasure is in the way things smell. The familiar smell of your lovers’ skin, the smell of a baby and that soft clean body in your arms, the smell of your favorite dinner in the oven, the way the air smells when leaves are burning, or just after a rain. 

Being loved by someone is the greatest pleasure of all. Those three simple words, “I love you”, whether they are from a lover, a friend, a child, a parent, a brother or sister, there is nothing that can compare to being loved. Love is a tapestry of everything and yet it is nothing if left unshared.

With love,
Your future grandmother

Happy Valentines’ Day, I hope you make the most wonderful tapestry to share with someone special. 

Revised from an earlier post of mine.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Origins

Siv

 Inspiration is born some where. Small seeds of it grow in different places, some growing wild and some carefully planted. DL Hammons at Cruising Altitude together with his co-hosts Katie Mills (Creepy Query Girl) Alex J. Cavanaugh and Matthew MacNish  (Quintessentially Questionable Query Experiment),  would like us to share the origin of our inspiration. What made us want to write and how did we get started? This is a ORIGINS blogfest, and here is where my seed was planted:
  
Siv is the Norwegian name of a weed that grows in marshes. Isolated stalks, hardy and sometimes ornamental, they tolerate most extreme conditions growing where few other plants can. Whether they knew it at the time or not, my parents could not have picked a name that would suit me any better. Learning to adapt was never a choice but a matter of necessity, as we moved from town to town in a beaten up station wagon and a trailer full of old furniture and boxes. Our father was always busy chasing a new dream, and we would sit in the back seat surrounded by cigarette smoke as he sprouted off about how great things were going to be in this new town. My sisters, my brother and I, had heard it all many times before.

Always the new kid with a name that no one could pronounce, I sought refuge in the school library. Characters in books became my best friends. Friends that kept me company no matter what clothes I wore or where I came from.  It was the summer between grade school and junior high that I discovered the power of my own written words. After seeing Elisabeth Taylor in the movie Rain Tree County I decided to send my very first fan mail. Loving a good story, told on paper or film is inspiring and for some forgotten reason she inspired me.  In my very best handwriting, a carefully composed poem was folded into an envelope then sent to her agent, whose address my mother helped find. Months went by and the letter all but forgotten until one day when my mother brought me a large manila envelope addressed to me. The envelope contained an autographed picture of Elisabeth Taylor and a letter thanking me for the beautiful poem. 

The picture and letter disappeared in an unpaid storage facility, together with all the other childhood mementos of mine. Once again my father had to pack us and his dreams into a beaten up station wagon, leaving most of our things behind. What I did take with me was the desire to keep on writing and it has stayed with me ever since.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Sex in the Kitchen


Bet you didn’t see this coming. Lately I have focused a lot of attention on food and let’s face it, everyone knows that the best way to a mans heart is through his stomach. That is all good and well, but for you guys out there, we women think it is very sexy to see a man in the kitchen whether he is cooking or not. This week is all about love and if you haven’t joined up for my love-fest please go check it out by clicking HERE or on the badge for “Love is in the air” on the sidebar. 

Food and sex seem to go well together. Asparagus, honey, bananas and other foods can get you in the mood and help get that blood flowing down to your sexy parts. The food you eat can have a direct impact on your sex life, affecting your hormones, brain chemistry and energy. Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, rose from the sea on an oyster and then gave birth to Eros. The first aphrodisiac food was born and the interest in aphrodisiacs began.

Aphrodisiac foods have been used as far back as the Romans and the Greeks to increase sexual powers. During those periods, people were concerned mostly about fertility and sexual performance, so a great amount of time was spent on figuring out what aphrodisiac foods would help in this department. You probably already have many of these foods in your kitchen.

The aphrodisiac effect is from the presentation and eating of the food as well as from the physical response. Be sexy in your kitchen while you prepare your aphrodisiac meals, and prepare them together. When you cook with passion, you will feel passion around you. Take a look at what you have in your kitchen because odds are you have a great deal of aphrodisiacs already at your disposal. Get into the kitchen and put some sex on a plate. Here is a list of foods that will get you in the mood.

Aniseed: The Greeks and Romans believed that aniseed had special sexual powers. There are many uses for this aphrodisiac food and some people believe that sucking on the seeds will increase your libido.

Asparagus: Said to stir up lust in man and woman. In 19th century France, bridegrooms were served three courses of the sexy spears at their prenuptial dinners. Asparagus is a great source of potassium, fiber, vitamin B6, vitamins A and C, and thiamin and folic acid. The latter is said to boost histamine production necessary for the ability to reach orgasm in both sexes.

Almonds: These tasty nuts are regarded as fertility symbols. The aroma of almond supposedly arouses passion in both sexes. Many perfumes take advantage of its sweet musky smell.

Avocado: Just by looking at the shape of avocado, you will see the reason why it was associated with sexuality. The Aztecs called the avocado tree a “testicle tree” because they thought the fruit hanging in pairs on the tree looked like male testicles. The Catholic priests in Spain found this fruit so obscene and provocative that they forbade it. 

Bananas: By it shape its connection with sexuality is very obvious, but you’ll also find that bananas are loaded with important vitamins and contains chelating minerals and an enzyme which is said to enhance the male libido.

Basil: Not only does it make the meals smell and taste great, but it also has a lot of beneficial effects on human body. Basil has a fantastic aroma that is said to have an aphrodisiac effect and it is also very stimulating. Using sweet basil in a pasta sauce will be sure to get your heart racing. Today I am making pasta and using plenty of basil!

Chili peppers: “Capsaicin,” a chemical that stimulates our nerve endings and raises our pulse, is responsible for the “heat” in chili peppers. This aphrodisiac food is also thought to release endorphins, which give our bodies a natural high. Researchers believe that is the case with all “hot” foods. Garlic is another example of these aphrodisiac foods.

Chocolate: Pure chocolate, the king of natural aphrodisiacs, contains a host of feel good chemicals, or so called love chemicals which releases dopamine in the pleasure centers of the brain and peaks during orgasm. These chemicals are said to help induce feelings of excitement, attraction and euphoria. Who doesn’t know about chocolate as an aphrodisiac? On Valentines Day more chocolate is sold than at any other time during the year. Nothing says “I love you” better than chocolate.  

Figs: This sexy fruit has long been thought of as an arousing stimulant. Figs are one of the oldest recorded fruits. They are mentioned in the Bible (Adam and Eve wore fig leaves to cover their private parts), are reported to be Cleopatra’s favorite fruit, and the ancient Greeks held them as sacred and associated them with love and fertility.

Ginger: Ginger root can be eaten raw, cooked, or crystallized. Ginger is a circulatory system stimulant which can increase sexual powers and desire.

Nutmeg: Chinese women believe that nutmeg is an aphrodisiac, and that it increases sexual desire. It also contributes to procreation during fertility. A hallucinogenic effect can be produced by a large quantity of nutmeg.

Oysters: Probably the food most associated with being an aphrodisiac. Most people are aware of their reputation for increasing sexual desire. Oysters may be thought an aphrodisiac because of their high zinc content, which helps produce sperm and increases libido. I have never tried them but if I ever do raw oysters are said to be best served with chilled Champagne, and in my case, lots of it.

Now that you have your grocery list go shopping and have some fun. It is time to turn on some heat in the kitchen, or what do you think?

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

LOVE IS IN THE AIR-BLOGFEST

Valentines’ Day is right around the corner and in celebration it only seems fitting to share a bit of love. The retail market in Norway has finally caught up with this “Holiday.” Cards, flowers and chocolates have sneaked their way into the marketing machine as Norway becomes more “Americanized.”  A few years ago Halloween and Valentines’ Day were something that Norwegians only saw and heard about on TV, now they have immigrated into Norwegian culture and it looks like they are here to stay.

From now until the 14th of February I will be sharing previous posts and hopefully some new ones that deal with matters of the heart. Do you have a story to share or a Valentine you would like to send? Join me in this blogfest and spread some love around. Here is how:

First, you need to sign-up to participate via the Linky tool below, then shout out to all of your blogging friends and encourage them to sign up as well.  Add the badge to your sidebar (I worked hard on it so please use it!) and link it to this page. Then all you have to do is write about love and post it by Valentines’ Day, Feb.14th. Make sure to go around and read the other love-fest posts on love. That is how we spread the love around.

This is my very first blogfest and I am excited to see if there are any lovers out there that are willing to share a little love . Don't forget to add your site to the linky tool below!


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Treat Time

 Enough food already! So I am winding off this small series on “What's for dinner Mom?” with a treat. Besides I am still on snow shoveling strike so that means no store today and left-over leftovers for dinner. If you missed dinner yesterday, you can see what dinner will be today by clicking HERE

My two kids that are visiting from the states this summer should be less frightened now about sitting at the dinner table. Norwegian food may be a bit different at times but I am still an American cook. 

We used to spend a lot of time up in the mountains at our families cabin and often we would go picking berries. My friendly freezer Simon is full of berries so I decided to make some use of the blueberries from a couple of years ago that has been hiding inside. Blueberry jam and waffles have been on my mind for a couple of days now. Waffles are as Norwegian as Apple Pie is American. All mothers have a waffle iron in their possession, and it is used for almost every occasion except breakfast. You will see waffles at school plays, children sporting events, raffles, or when needed as a treat to serve with coffee when company shows up.  Anything can be put on top of waffles, from goat cheese to sour cream and jam. Cookies are for Christmas, waffles stick around all year long like a good friend.

Waffles and Homemade Blueberry Jam


Yesterday I promised to tell you what you can do with old dairy products. Milk, yogurt, and any kind of cream can be frozen, then thawed and used in baking. It is wonderful in homemade bread and in my case now, waffles. This is how I make them:

A basic recipe calls for 4 eggs which will make about 30 waffles. Wisp eggs up with one cup of sugar for each egg in a large bowl until the mixture turns thick and fluffy. If you are using a machine, put it aside because the rest is done by hand. Mix in 1 liter of milk. In a separate bowl mix together half a kilo of flour, 2 tsp. of baking soda, 1 tsp. cardamom and 1 tbs. vanilla sugar. Sift this into the egg and milk mixture until you have a thick cake like batter. Add more flour if needed. Finally add half a stick of melted and cooled butter or margarine. Let waffle mixture sit for 10 minutes and you are good to go. Now all you need is a waffle iron…Maybe I should have mentioned that earlier…Hmm, wonder if it is possible to fry these off like pancakes. Let me know if you try.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Writers Take Note

Writers' Platform Building Campaign 

 

When I first started blogging almost a year ago, I saw these badges on many of the blogging sites I had come across. It didn't take long before I found my way to Rachaels blog and discovered what the Writers Platform Building Campaign was all about. Unfortunately my timing has been off, that is until now.

  

Rachael Harrie of Rach Writes  is once again hosting the Write Campaign which aims at helping writers and bloggers make contact and build their author platforms. Finally I have the chance to participate and to make even more friends in this wonderful community. If you would like to do the same thing then check out Rachaels site now while you still have the chance.

The Food Whisperer

 
 Sometimes when asked, “What’s for dinner Mom?” I have no answer. My leftovers do not talk to each other, I cannot get to the store, there is no money in my wallet or I am sick. That would be the time to call in the food whisperer. There is one inside all of us. The food whisperer tell us when food is bad and needs to be thrown out, turns old bread into new and almost magically gets your leftovers to talk to each other and make a meal.

It is Monday, the stores were closed yesterday, and I did not plan for the unexpected company of this much snow. Dig out the car or put on skis are not my only option.

Snowed in and hungry

Taking inventory of the freezer, cupboards and fridge, it is time for the food whisperer to do her job. Once again leftovers will have to work together so first they need to start a dialog.  Small spicy meatballs, Chinese leftovers and ground beef from the freezer, wild rice and asparagus from yesterday’s dinner. What do they say to each other and how could they possibly get along? As you might know I have taken to naming my appliances as a means of keeping them user friendly. Mike, the microwave oven, will have to thin things out between Chinese and ground beef. Wild rice and asparagus will have to get along together with the rest of the company on today’s dinner plate. The result for dinner tonight is Wild Chinese Meatballs. The food whisperer has once again done the job and dinner is saved without physical exhaustion.

Wild Chinese Meatballs served with a light green salad

Tomorrow I am going to tell you what you can do with old dairy products and how they can put the sweetness back in your life. 

How many times has the food whisperer saved your meals?