7 ways to make the most of Autumn

The first of September is technically the start of autumn in Denmark. We have been feeling a little chill in the air in the mornings and the days are rapidly getting shorter but we still have a bit of warmth during the day. In Denmark this time is referred to as sensommer, a mini season between seasons. Autumn (as long as it isn’t rainy) is my favourite season but living in Scandinavia means that you have to make some practical changes as the seasons move towards winter.

1 Daylight lamp

I have raved before about the virtues of a daylight lamp, especially when waking in the morning. As I get up at 6am it is currently just getting light then and as the weeks move on I will be waking when it feels like night time. The daylight lamp is essential for me to get a good start to the day.

2 Swapping over duvets

In England we had one weight of duvet all year round (and we still used a double one!) But since living here we have a winter weight and summer weight duvets. I have started to feel the chill at night so in the next few weeks the current duvets will be washed and stored. The heavy ones will come out for the rest of the winter, plus a blanket as the season progresses, as I like to be very toasty warm.

3 Getting your hygge on

Although hygge is an all year round thing, autumn and winter is where it comes into its own as we need the hygge to get through the dark months. For me this means bringing out the soft cosy blankets for our sofas and also changing the cushion covers to softer fabric ones and in more autumny colours. And of course the candles!

4 Relaxing time

I love to craft and create things but summer evenings just don’t have the same atmosphere for this. Once the autumn comes I usually get some knitting out to do whilst watching TV and my craft box sees a lot more action over the darker months. Whilst I do spend plenty of time online, it is very important to me to do things off-line that encourage more creative thought and relaxation. It is also a time to learn new skills (don’t forget to check out the brush lettering classes I am hosting this month – there are a few places left)

This year I have been reading a lot more books as books rather than on my Kindle and this makes me feel I get a lot more engrossed in the book. As you may recall I get most of my books from the public library.

5 Strictly Come Dancing

This quite a British thing but the start of this fabulous dance competition on the BBC marks the start of the autumn and the count down to Christmas. I first watched this when I was breastfeeding my son in the early hours of the morning nine years ago and after that I didn’t really get into it. About four years ago my mum came to visit and she asked to watch it whilst she was staying with us, after that we are now hooked every year. I know it is cheesy etc but in a world with a constant news cycle of doom and gloom a little sparkle and a programme which is non confrontational and just pure fun is what we need (as long as you avoid the poisonous tabloid press).

6 Autumn leaves and apples

The autumn is a time when nature really puts on a show and there are loads of great places in the city where you can see the beauty of autumn from Frederiksberg Have to any of the cemeteries in the city. Nothing beats a crisp day and a walk around a park in the autumn. Local Danish apples are popping up in big boxes in the supermarkets especially Irma and a juicy autumn apple is a wonderful thing to snack on or to make into a warming crumble.

7 Tivoli at Halloween

Although we are a good few weeks away from this, I am already excited about the Halloween season in Tivoli, I think this is the best time to visit the park (and I will probably be making a YouTube video all about it.

So for me the autumn is a time for getting my hygge on and like a squirrel preparing for the long, dark months ahead.

 

 

Skolernes Motionsdag – Denmark wide school sports day

Those of you who have children in Danish schools will no doubt have been told that next Friday (13th Oct) is the Skolernes Motionsdag. For those without kids you may be surprised to see hordes of children running around parks, the lakes and other open spaces on the day. But what is it all about?

The day start with a mass warm up session before the entire school goes and runs circuits around a local open space.

98 percent of Denmark’s primary schools participate in the Schools’ Day of Activity with about 355,000 active students. It is estimated that 700,000 children are participating annually. Together they run what corresponds to around the earth around 35 times.

The School’s Day of Activity is part of the Sunde Children Movement School program , which is a collaboration between TrygFonden and Dansk Skoleidræt. The overall goal of the program is that more children and young people move more and establish healthy habits early in life.

The School’s Day of Motivation was first held in 1982. The idea was fostered by a group of sports teachers who wanted to create a joint exercise event in Funen. Initially, the students only ran , but over the years the event developed to include other activities.

This year schools have been given frisbees a couple of weeks before and there is an associated leaflet encouraging healthy habits in children around eating, exercise and screen time.

It seems odd to have the day when its is a bit cold but all the kids seem to love it. You can watch 2015’s warm up video here – still a big hit in our house!

Read more about the day here

Photo credit

Autumn holiday activities

With the efterårsferie (autumn school holiday) starting at end of school on Friday 13th (spooky) there is plenty to keep the kids entertained over the break. Tivoli opens for Halloween that day and the park will no doubt be festooned with spookiness and pumpkins. 

Culture Night  kicks of the autumn school holiday and shouldn’t be missed.

Lego building at the Danish Architecture Centre (remember to book yourself a place if you want to come in with your child).

Louisiana has events for children in the Children’s Wing

Frilands Museum is a great autumn trip and they have stuff going on during the week

Renaissance Fair is taking place at Kronborg Castle in Helsingør if you fancy a trip further afield

Viking for a day at the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde sounds like fun Workers’ Museum http://www.arbejdermuseet.dk/arrangement/efteraarsferie-skaeg-stauning/

Climate Planet is the huge planet installation in the Rådhuspladsen and sounds amazing.

Looking for a pumpkin patch then this post from another local blogger helps. Anya also mentions places for apple picking, which is more of an Autumn tradition in Denmark.

Enjoy the holiday!

Tivoli at Halloween

I’ve been working hard this week in a number of projects so it was lovely to spend the whole afternoon into the evening in Tivoli with my son. I love the seasonal openings in the park and this Halloween was no exception. Tivoli is opening for another two weeks until November 6th. But be warned next week is the Swedish school holidays so it will be a lot busier than my photos here!img_6488 img_6489 img_6496img_6491 img_6506 img_6509 img_6510 img_6518 img_6520 img_6522 img_6524 img_6530 img_6532

Season of mists…

I have a confession to make, I love the autumn and wish that this charade of a Danish summer would end and give us the chance to have a new season, where we know what clothes to wear. The Danes have a mini extra season between summer and autumn – sensommer – and it gives you a taste of what autumn is all about with just a little throw back to summer.IMG_5670Autumn has fast become my favourite season, it isn’t as long and miserable as winter but also it lacks the expectation and disappointment of summer. I am particularly looking forward to wrapping up in cosy jumpers, warm coats and boots. Autumn here is often sunny and chilly and gives you the chance to enjoy the season at places like the Frilands Museum and of course, Tivoli. The parks have a beautiful colour to them and the perfect way to get out and enjoy the fresh air before the winter hits us. We also get to experience beautiful sunrises and sunset.

I went to a talk at the Chart Art Festival yesterday and when I arrived at 3.30pm the weather was warm and nearly sunny, fast forward an hour and a half and I was dashing into a coffee shop to avoid the downpour. It was wet and chilly and as it is technically still summer I didn’t have a coat with me. But sitting in the warm, cosy coffee shop with candles burning and the dark gloomy skies outside, I had an almost irrational yearning for the autumn and dare I say it, winter. That’s what hygge will do for you!

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Hidden pocket of Autumn in Østerbro

I love the autumn but more often than not it feels like its rainy and grey here. Last week we had a blustery but sunny day with blue skies so I took the opportunity to have a little wander around this gorgeous little spot in Østerbro. I have written about the history of Brumleby before here, but I love this tiny village community tucked just off the busy street of Østerbrogade. It was quiet when I was walking around but the few residents I saw gave me smiles and Go’ Morgens.

IMG_2366I love seeing all the evidence of a community that enjoys its outdoor space – chairs and tables outside, time and care given to plants and outside one house, a little greenhouse decorated for Halloween. Such a special part of my area.IMG_2368 IMG_2369 IMG_2373 IMG_2375 IMG_2376 IMG_2377 IMG_2378 IMG_2380 IMG_2381

Halloween in Tivoli

We always have a visit to Tivoli during their Halloween opening and this year was no exception. We made sure we chose a sunny day last week and had a lovely afternoon wandering around. It is always worth sticking around until it gets dark for the real Halloween experience. The Halloween season ends on the 1st November so there is still time to enjoy some pumpkin fun this week.DSC01335 (1) DSC01343 IMG_2391

DSC01356 DSC01354DSC01363See our previous Halloween visits to Tivoli in 2014 and 2013.

Annual visit to the Frilands Museum

Last week was the autumn break here in Denmark and whilst my son was sick for some of it, we still managed to get out and about. As planned we visited the DAC for the Lego build and also Carlsberg Brewery for their Halloween event (which was a little tame but fun). The highlight of the week was a visit to the Frilands Museum. This has been something of a tradition for us to visit in October and it is amazing how the arrival of autumn varies from year to year. The leaves had barely started turning this year. For the first time we went during the autumn break and the traditional market with various old-fashioned fairground stalls and pony rides made the experience very different from previous years when the museum had been virtually empty. It is now closed until some  Christmas weekends (November 28 +29 and December 5 + 6) which should be pretty special – they are certainly in our diary.

I thought I would share a few pictures from last week there. And in case you missed it I had an article in the Huffington Post which you can read here and also in The Local here.IMG_2226 IMG_2236 IMG_2238 IMG_2239 IMG_2222IMG_2253

Five places to enjoy the autumn in Copenhagen

This week is packed with deadlines and birthday preparation for my son’s sixth birthday so today I thought I would share some older posts with you.

Last year I wrote some posts about new places I visited to enjoy the autumn and I thought I would gather them here today for some autumn inspiration for the coming few weeks. Just click on the links below.IMG_8555Firstly autumn in Assistens Cemetery. I wrote about this place as a great Spring watching location but it is still pretty amazing in the autumn too.CIMG7542Next up the Botanical Gardens, which really put a show on this time of year.CIMG7404Then onto Kastellet for some autumn colour close to the city but in a place that feels very far removed.IMG_8141A quick and easy autumn colour fix can be found all along the Lakes but my favourite spot is Sortedam Sø.CIMG7322And finally our favourite autumn tradition of the Frilands Museum. I would love to hear about your favourite places too.

I hope the sun shines over the next few weeks so we can all enjoy these spots. You may also enjoy all the reasons I love autumn in Copenhagen.

Nordhavn Sunrise

Last year when I was cycling my son to school in Valby I would catch a glimpse of the sunrise behind us and think how amazing it must look from Nordhavn station. This year we now use the station every morning at the same time and it has been wonderful to capture the sunrise each day and to track its slow journey into autumn. It now rises a few minutes before we arrive at the station so these shots will be no more until the spring. I have been collection them under a hashtag on Instagram but I thought I would share them here today too. nordhavn sunrise