Both my Mom and Dad's parents were Swedish immigrants. Dad had told me that the Swedish language was not allowed around the children. However his parents would use Swedish in their evening conversations. Only a few words and phrases could Dad remember. He referred to himself as a “Svenska Pojke,” (Swedish Boy) and Mom as a “Svenska Flicka.” He would use “Tack Sa Myket” (thank you very much) often. There were a few more phrases that have slipped away from me.
At Thanksgiving and Christmas time, both parents had favorite Swedish foods. A braided Swedish coffee bread was always on the table at breakfast, sometimes in the shape of a wreath.
Kanebulla, (cinnamon buns) were also a breakfast treat.
Spritz cookies were a favorite of mine at Christmas time, and still are.
Swedish Limpa bread (Wort Loaf) would also be made by Mom.
Swedish meatballs with gravy, served over mashed potatoes, was always welcome.
A note here: never, never would I let the peas touch the mashed potatoes. Nothing could touch anything! Boy how things have changed. Oh how I remember picking the onions out of spaghetti sauce -- no onions for me.
I wrote about Knackebrod, crisp bread, published 2/21/11.
It was seldom that this crisp bread wasn't in the cupboard for a snack with cream cheese or blue cheese as a spread. It was my job to mash the wedge of blue cheese with milk to make it spreadable. To this day, it's still my job to mash the blue cheese wedge, and my job to consume the whole damn thing!
At New Years Eve bedtime, my Mom would leave a bowl of porridge for the” Tomte” or “Nisse.” This little creature lived in the cellar and looked over us during night time. I never saw him, nor was I afraid of him. I always wondered where he ate the rest of the year.
Thanks to the “Nisse” our holidays during the Great Depression and WW2, were happy ones.
“Nothing is really lost to us as long as we remember it.” - L. M. Montgomery. The Story Girl.
by Ray Freden, Seaview/ Marshfield, 70 years.