Reindeers, Skiing & Everything in between :)

I haven’t been keeping you guys updated and I apologize for that. I guess “feeling homesick” is really a thing and I’ve kinda experienced it for the first time in such a hardcore way. So I’ve been quiet here, but I have still been going on adventures and I’m here now to tell you all about the fun stuff I got up to recently.

I went to a museum ❤️

Anybody who really knows me, will know that I love museums. This love of museums was heavily influenced by my father, who exposed me to them at a young age and continued to do so until the feeling of walking into a museum became my happy place. Thanks Dad.

The museum I went to here in the city center was so beautiful. They are so interactive and are almost built on the fundamental fact that young children will visit the place to gain knowledge and insight. It’s built in a fun and interactive way that facilitates kids learning. If we want our children to learn anything at all, we must make it fun and attractive to a young mind. The museum appealed to almost all your senses. There were buttons to press in order to hear sounds, there was a dark room and you had to take a torch in and shine it on the walls to read the info or see the pictures. There were moving visuals projected on the ground and this was so awesome to watch because the little ones react so well to all this stimuli. I’m really learning a lot about how to approach teaching and learning.  


Melody turns 30!

My friend Melody celebrated her 30th birthday here in Norway around the middle of February. Our friend Ingrid organized an amazing party to celebrate this and it was my first experience at a Norwegian party. So, apparently clubs are really expensive – entry fee & alcohol. What people do here is : Pre-Party. It’s basically drinking at home with a whole bunch of your friends before actually going into a club. This party included some girls from our class at University, and some of Ingrid’s friends and then ended up being a huge gathering and it was exactly as it is in the movies. People just rocking up at the door. Friends of friends showing up. Roommates of friends and the roommates friends too. Hahaha. It was just like those house parties you see in American movies. Drinking games, music, conversation, laughter and a waffle cake! Wow. I had fun.


The real snow experience ❤

Up until this point I had only been exposed to little and few flakes of snow. Then all of a sudden, out of the blue – everything turned white! Thick, big and heavy flakes of snow fell from the sky and it was the most wonderful experience. You don’t think about the cold when you’re experiencing magic. Little kids as young as 3 years old, had skiis on and were ready to go skiing. I then heard someone say “Norwegians are born with skiis on their feet”. Haha. Must be true. This 3 year old had all the confidence in the world and skiied like a pro. The trees hung low and heavy. Being a South African and having never experienced snow like this before, was really breathtaking. The kids still have 2-3 hours of outdoor play at kindergarten, even when it’s snowing like this. Absolutely incredible. 


Reindeers at Røros 🦌🦌🦌

The university took us on an outing to Røros. It’s a few hours drive out of Trondheim. There was a festival happening and there were little stalls that created a market like vibe. The festival was in honor of the Sami people (the indigenous people of Norway). The stalls sold everything from Reindeer meat burgers, to typical Norwegian mittens and honey-coated almonds. Meat, leather, fur hats, woolen jerseys, stuffed toys, and so much more were on sale. The best part of Røros was the part where I got to see an actual Reindeer!!! What a beautiful, mystical creature. I went reindeer sleighing and it was totally cool guys! I feel like the stuff that’s been happening to me recently is straight out of a movie. I still can’t believe that I’m so blessed to be able to experience all of this. 

We had a pizza night here at the apartment 🍕🍕🍕 Homemade pizza! Yum 👅


Oh! Oh! Oh! I got a new piercing too!


Science center 

The University organized a trip for us to visit a science center and learn about how to incorporate science in a simple way, into our teaching. It was pretty fun. We experimented with different materials and using household or easy to find items. We made bombs, volcanoes and tried to mix oil with water. Sad story – oil and water never mix. 😔 They just never do. The coolest of the experiments was actually using a plastic pipette and trying to fit as many drops of water as we could onto a coin. We actually reached 87! How cool? Go try it please. It sounds childish but it’s actually the most fun thing.


Roommate Movie night 🎥😂❤

So let me just say, my roommates and I have become quite a little family. We have meals together, talk about how each other’s days went and we also talk about deep stuff too. These girls have become a family away from my family. I can’t actually remember who suggested the idea, all I know is this : one night, we dragged a mattress onto the kitchen floor and watched 50 shades darker on a laptop. We giggled and passed comments all throughout the movie. I have never read the books or watched the first movie, was never and will never be interested in the whole “50 shades” thing. But something about this night brought us closer together. Haha. We bonded that day. It was cozy and lovely. Here, have a look for yourself.

And girls, if you’re reading this – Then please know that I appreciate all the time you spend with me and the love and support too!


Oh! Oh! Oh! I got my residence permit! I’m officially a Norwegian citizen til August! The picture on my card looks hideous but that’s beside the point. I’m a resident homies! 

Trip to the woods

The kindergarten I’m at, took the little ones on a trip to the woods. I’m not even an outdoorsy person, but man, those woods were beautiful and Mother Nature is splendid. 

I baked a cake. From scratch. No premixed store bought fakes here. The real deal. Icing too! (Thanks to my friend Tamara -Tams Treats- for the recipe). Guys, my first attempt was a success ❤️🎂 yippee. Got my foot in the door with cooking and cleaning, now I can bake too. Wifey material right here 😂. Jokes. I’m taken.

But actually, it’s an achievement for me because I tried to make brownies (store bought premix) and they failed so hard. I put like 1 whole liter of water into the mix and it was just such a fail! So I’m gonna not so humbly brag about the deliciousness of the cake I baked! Need a picture for proof? Here you go. 

Boom!

Northern lights

A group of us girls went up to Moholt hill to see if we could spot the northern lights. We did get to see them but unfortunately my phone couldn’t capture the phenomenon. My friend Iffy did manage to snap some shots. Here’s what we got. 

Skiing 🎿 

I was really hoping to find an undiscovered talent in skiing. Lord, was I wrong! Ha! I fell down about 6 times in the first 5 minutes. And I kept sliding backwards. And falling. Backwards and falling. That was the total sum of events on my first attempt at cross country skiing. I went with my roommates Jennekke and Debora, and a friend of mine, her name is Annamária and she’s from Hungary. It was so funny getting on the bus. Literally every single person on the bus had skiis with them. Ladies as old as what looked to be 80 were kitted out and ready to ski. We got up the hill and the people on the bus got of. We entered this space of open land and I watched in awe as I saw little kids, 1 year olds, on skiis. Pregnant women, old people, young people, dads with babies strapped on their backs, people even skiing with their dogs! It was great. But there I was. Falling flat on my ass every two minutes 😂😂😂😂 I was a sight for sore eyes. 

Aaaaand, that’s it folks. Oh wait, before I forget, let me add some pictures of me at college with all my cool friends. The diversity amongst the group of exchange students is something to marvel over. We are all from different parts of the world, from different cultural backgrounds and have such different lives, yet we find common ground and build and forge meaningful friendships. The experience here is so rich and fulfilling. 

I also just want to show you my little humans climbing trees and constructing their own sandwiches ❤ They are seriously the cutest. My mentor made cocoa  and took his guitar into the woods, we made a bonfire and sang songs whilst sipping on hot cocoa 😍😍😍.  
I know the tone of this post is upbeat and happy, and I really don’t mean to be a downer here but I want to conclude on a serious topic. For those of you who may not know, I’m a very vocal spokesperson/supporter on Mental Health Awareness. It needs awareness because there are so many misconceptions around it. If you have someone in your life who is suffering from a mental illness, take care of this person. Try to understand even if you don’t. Because I can promise you this, it’s not fun for the person who has it. Nobody just wakes up and decides to be depressed for fun. These are serious things and people need support and love. You never know what you could say or do that may trigger the person, so always take care with your words and actions.  I’m hoping to bring awareness to a topic that people feel uncomfortable discussing. What’s worse is the people who are sufferers of mental illness feel embarrassed for having it, as if it was in their control or as if they had a choice in the matter.  If you know anyone who is battling from any sort of mental illness, give them a hug today or just say a few kind words to them. I promise you that it makes things just a bit better for them. And if you are reading this and you have some sort of mental health issue, imagine me wrapping you in my arms and giving you the tightest hug! You’re not alone and you matter. You are valued and you have worth.
That my friends, concludes this issue of MindBodySona.

As always, I wish you love, light and peace ✌🏼 Be strong my people!

If you live for people’s acceptance, you’ll die from their rejection.” – Lecrae

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Thoughts on Emotions.

 

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I came across this quote by Kristina Carrillo-Bucaram and it resonated so deep within me, that I felt the need to share it with you all. It states:

My only focus each day is to be myself, live my true passions, inspire greater health and wear my soul shamelessly, with strength and grace.” – Kistina Carrillo-Bucaram (@fullyrawkristina)

…How incredibly beautiful is that?

For those of you who know me, you know that I am incredibly in tune with my spirituality and energies are important to me. I trust the vibrations I receive and always strive for harmony.

There is a beautiful piece of writing by an unknown author, which basically tells you to listen to your emotions. I am going to share this with you, because if you are like me, then you will appreciate the beauty of this piece. I found this on a facebook page titled: Berlin Artparasites.

Hey you, listen to your emotions…

Bitterness shows you where you need to heal, where you’re still holding judgements on others and yourself.

Resentment shows you where you’re living in the past and not allowing the present to be as it is.

Discomfort shows you that you need to pay attention right now to what is happening, because you’re being given the opportunity to change, to do something different than what you typically do.

Anger shows you what you’re passionate about, where your boundaries are, and what you believe needs to change about the world.

Disappointment shows that you tried for something, that you did not give into apathy, that you still care.

Guilt shows you that you’re still living a life in other people’s expectations of what you should do.

Shame shows you that you’re internalizing other people’s beliefs about who you should be and that you need to reconnect with yourself.

Anxiety shows you that you need to wake up, right now, and be present, that you’re still stuck in the past and living in fear of the future.

Sadness shows you the depth of your feelings, the depth of your care for others and this world. – Unknown

As a person who suffers from anxiety, I think it really is important to be in touch with your emotions and feelings. Listen to your emotions and always be authentic. Be unapologetic in your evolution. In order to grow and develop, we need to trust ourselves and acknowledge all feelings. We need to appreciate the remarkable feelings but also listen to the deeper meaning behind the not-so-great feelings. Take a second to reflect on your feelings. Hindsight is the best foresight. Respect yourself. Respect the process. Respect the feelings and emotions. Do not be ashamed for feeling a certain way.

Basically, what I’m trying to say is, listen to your emotions, they tell you things about yourself and respect that process in order to grow to your higher potential.

To conclude, I’d like to end by a quote shared with me by my friend Anke. It’s a little quote that fits well with the emotions whilst traveling.

“Traveling is brutality. It forces you to trust strangers and to lose sight of all that familiar comfort of home and friends.

You are constantly off balance. Nothing is yours except the essential things: air, sleep, dreams, sea, the sky – all things tending towards the eternal or what we imagine of it”

 

I wish you peace, light, and love. Thank you for reading and for the support! Bloom and Blossom in all your glory my friends.

 

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Hello Norway 🇳🇴❤️

Wow. 

Just wow. 

So let me start with the travel diaries and tell you about my flights and the journey. Then I’ll get to the pictures and beauty that is Norway. 

I left Johannesburg at 7pm on the 18th January. Had the longest flight to Dubai, reaching there at 6am on the 19th January. I didn’t sleep at all on the plane. There were crying babies and people coughing so bad (I felt like Kate Winslet in the movie Contagion 😷). It was bad. 

So, I bumped up the volume on my earphones and listened to Eminem all night. 

 I then boarded a flight from Dubai to Oslo. This was at 8am on the 19th January. 

I reached Oslo at 12pm on the 19th January. But we had been traveling for 7 hours and a bit. 

Hahahaha! That time warp struggle was so real. My body just went into this crazy shock because I hadn’t slept or eaten properly in forever and the blood circulation to my legs was like non-existent due to the fact that I was sitting all the time! Ergh. What a mission. 

My best friend told me that the worst part about traveling, is the traveling. Crying babies, coughing & sneezing sick people and some really rude air hostesses. I just prayed to God that I didn’t have to sit next to anyone creepy.  


We prayed so hard and thankfully, God answered our prayers. We ended up sitting next to each other (My travel buddy and one of my best friends:- Melody Luthuli) and always had a space in between us. Yay for the small pleasures in life. 

So anyway, somewhere over Moscow, the temperature outside the plane was -55 degrees!!!! I kid you not!  Look! 

Icy! Cold! Snowy! Pictures of the view from the plane do absolutely no justice to the actual beauty of seeing it with your own eyes! Anyway, I’m trying to create a visual for you, but even words fail me at this point. Have a look at the pictures I captured from the flight. 

How incredibly beautiful?!?

Back to my story…

Got to Oslo at 12pm and waited til 4:20pm to board the flight to Trondheim. At this point I was just plain down tired. 

We were greeted at the airport by our international coordinator and she was all smiles. 

We then drove for about 30minutes to our apartments in Moholt Alle. It’s the student village here in Trondheim. Well there’s lots of student villages, but ours is Moholt. 

We got a sneak peak of the stunning Queen Maud University! Oh my, what a sight to behold. The building looks like a castle. I will put up pictures when I go there during the day and can actually get a good picture for you guys. 

My apartment block is right next to a convenience store. I share my flat with 3 other exchange students. We share a communal kitchen and bathroom and we each have our own rooms. The rooms are pretty spacious and I have a single bed, desk and chair, huge window and wardrobe. I love my window because it’s beautiful to just sit and watch the goings on outside. Students walking up and down. The hustle and bustle of it all. I woke up on my first morning here to find it had been snowing that night. 
Day 1

Look at my excited face! Look how happy/sleepy/excited I am to see the snow! 

Now, I’m usually the person whose wearing a jersey in Durbans heat. But something clicked within. And I knew I was not gonna be set back by the cold. This experience is far too amazing to be wasted because it’s “too cold” to go out. 

So Melody and I decided to go in to town to get some Norwegian SIM cards and data bundles etc. We walked to the bus stop, hopped on and rode into town. The bus system is so organized and simple here. Once you get used to it, you realize just how easy it is and driving then seems unnecessary. Like, why emit all those carbon fumes in your own cars when you can just get on a clean bus and reduce the bad impact on the earth! Smart and practical. I like it a lot! 

I was really impressed with the busses. Can you tell? Hahaha. 

We got to Trondheim Torg – the biggest mall in Trondheim and wow wow wow. I wanted to buy everything. The stores had such beautiful winter clothes and I was just enamored by the beauty and splendor of it all. The people are really nice and if you’re new to the place and you need to ask questions, they are ever eager to help you out. Really sweet. 

Oh wait, I forgot to tell you about my room mates! 

  • A girl from Italy doing her masters in Civil Engineering 
  • A girl from Germany studying here (not sure of what she is studying yet, because she went on holiday and we didn’t get to talk much)
  • A girl from Holland studying Chemistry.

Women are taking over the world! I love being around strong and powerful people. They raise your frequency and vibration and almost always inspire you. Living life being inspired daily is a beautiful thing indeed!

On that first night, my Norwegian friends Ingrid and Isabel came over and cooked dinner for Melody and I. They made tacos and it was delicious. They also brought us a whole lot of warm winter stuff for when the weather really dips (like -20 degrees).


Day 2

Melody and I needed groceries. So we decided to go to Rema 1000. It’s a grocery store kinda like checkers. There’s also Bunnpriss and kiwi. Like pick n pay and spar.

So we start our trek and Mel says we should turn right. I said no it’s left and then right at the traffic light. 

HAHAHAHAHAHA. I need to stop being a know-it-all because I actually don’t know it all. I forced my poor friend down the wrong road for about 3 hours. We just kept walking and walking until we were so lost we needed to use GPS to navigate our way back. We got some cool pics of the day though.  

Here they are: 


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Finally, SUCCESS! We found Rema 1000. And guess what? We walked out and realized we were on the same street as our apartments. If I had only listened to Melody, we would not have gotten so lost and wet from the drizzle!
All in all, a great first two days and fun too! Loving this place, it’s people and the general vibe here. 

I feel safe, mentally prepared for the next three months and amped to have so much support and love from all of you who read this blog. Thank you all and much love and light to you. 
Bye for now! 

❤️❤️❤️