Oct 16, 2009

(George Jefferson has nothing on us!) 

     Papa and the boys have been working on the upstairs of the storstuga (the main house-built in the 1860's) for as long as I have been here - two and a half years and before that as well.  During the winter when Papa was away, when we had finished the milking and the barn work, Manny and Gustav would go up for several hours after dinner and hammer away.  They ripped down walls, tore up the floor, insulated under it, and laid it down again,  insulated the outer walls and the area above the ceilings, drywalled and primed the rooms and more.  When Papa was home he worked right beside them and made certain that everything was in keeping with the age and style of the home historically. It was an amazing effort and we looked forward to the day when we could actually move out of our sleeping quarters in the vävstuga (weaving house) and sleep upstairs there in the main house (good-bye to the freezing hike every night and morning back and forth from the vävstuga.....brrrrrr.....quite a way to start and end your day!)

     This summer the happy moment finally arrived.  Although there is still much to do, it came to the point where we could bring in the beds and get it set up.  In case you are wondering if the motivation was strong enough, here is Gustav proving it was...that's the weaving house in the background and he is carrying the solid bottom of his bed over to the main house.  It weighed a ton! I saw him coming and grabbed my camera and then ran to open the door and helped him up the winding stairs with the bed.

     Another important move up came when Gustav graduated from ninth grade and moved into Gymnasium, which is tenth, eleventh and twelfth grades in Sweden.  This meant transferring to another school in Sollefteå about an hour away each day by bus.  Graduation from ninth grade is an important event for Swedish students and involves a graduation ceremony at the church, parties and celebrations with both family and school friends. Gustav worked hard and got excellent grades.  The high schools are specific to your career track and he chose building, carpentry and construction and because of his grades was well qualified to be accepted into the program.

The Swedish churches are absolutely beautiful inside and in this ceremony they had a wonderful children's choir singing the traditional songs for the occasion, as well as several individual musical numbers by some of the students.  The minister for the church in Junsele is a woman in her fifties who is in charge of several congregations in the area. She gave a very forceful talk on "The Need to Repent" which raised a few eyebrows.  There was also a talk by the principal and then  the presentation of the graduation certificates.
If you look closely you can see Gustav here in the line accepting his certificate.

We are so proud of him and how wonderfully he has done.

Congratulations Gustav....we sure love you!!


Rorie said...

I just found your blog through your daughter Emilie's blog. I just had to comment because when I was an exchange student so many years ago, my best friend came from Solleftea! So neat to hear about it on your blog. I love your garden too. :)

MStevenson said...

So handsome Gustav!!!!!