Summer, Travelling, Winter

A house in the country


Can you see the sea?

The idea to buy a house somewhere to take the family and spend time together, far away from the big city, work or schools has been floating around our heads for a while now. For years, the dream of a house in the country had been nothing more than that: a dream. And then, all of a sudden, the dream became an actual possibility. Something to grab if only we would try hard enough.

We always wanted a house in the South of France. At least that’s what we thought. But presented with the prospect, we opted for a different cup of tea altogether: we bought a plot of land in Sweden.

Look, Mummy. Ice!

Look, Mummy. Ice!

Given our openly and repeatedly proclaimed love for the Nordic country, this won’t really surprise you. My husband is Swedish, we have good friends in Stockholm, and we are keen to spend more time there, especially in summer.

Because none of the houses we were looking at would fit our bill, we nurtured the idea of building a house. And it has grown on us.

We have found the perfect plot in the perfect location. It’s located within the Archipelago, about 150m from the sea, perched on a little hill that – if we get it right – should offer a glimpse onto the sea from the (future) first floor balcony. The plot is big enough to accommodate Lil’ L’s long lusted after trampoline, a sandpit for the Pea and a house with enough bedrooms to spend a long summer with friends there.

Sweden: always gingerbread snaps and marshmallows to munch on at Marlene Birger

Sweden: always gingerbread snaps and marshmallows to munch on at Marlene Birger

I know that building a house in Sweden from the distance (especially as my Swedish is limited to the topics of cinnamon buns and crayfish) sounds like a bit of a project (Hey! Don’t laugh at me!), but as I am most productive when I have slightly too much to do, I am not too stressed about it. Big M and I will take turns to go to Sweden on a monthly basis, and maybe spend some more time there in the summer, when the building goes up.

I renovated our first house when I was rearranging my career, heavily pregnant at the time; I completely gutted and re-did our current apartment when I was writing a novel and was, again, very pregnant. So now that I am not reproducing for a change and am only writing another book, building a house in Sweden should be a walk in the park. *cough*


  1. that sounds amazing, I have great friends in Sweden and keep on dreaming on taking Harry there for the summer…one day 🙂

  2. This is so exciting Deborah! I am sure that it will be wonderful. I can’t wait to see the pics…You seem to have a lot on your plate, so don’t forget to take care of yourself!

  3. Oh wow amazing, we have land in Cyprus but not made the jump and debating selling-seems like a lot of work but what an incredible project. Time away is so good for the soul too! Happy New Year beautiful x

  4. This sounds so amazing and beautiful. I cannot wait for you to start this project, I believe your family will absolutely love this house!

  5. So exciting! Fabulous start to 2014.

    My husband dreams of doing exactly the same and Sweden has been mentioned many times too. He’s spent some wonderful times there and we had one of the very best family vacations in Sweden a few years back. However, now being on the US west coast it’s probably a bit too far these days, but the plan is the same – plot of land, sea views ideally and build our own. So looking forward to seeing your project take off. Good luck.

  6. That sounds positively wonderful. A fantastic escape from city life even if you will have the initial stress to get it done. Perfect!

  7. Wow! Fantastic news! I am looking forward to follow your project, especially as I am Swedish (living in England) and both my husband and I have a dream of our own summer house in Sweden, but first on the wish list is doing up a nice country cottage in England…fingers crossed for this year!

    I do believe 2014 will be a good one!

    Take care xx

  8. To me having another house would just be more work. I’d have to maintain another property, clean it and remember what was in each one and I am way too lazy and daydreamy to do that and you want to build a house. That is something I can’t even begin to get my head around. I rather stay with friends or in a hotel but I am glad you have the gumption to get stuck in

  9. What a fabulous turn of events! I had a beach home when growing up and it was so nice to decamp there for the summer. The girls will love it!

  10. Pingback: A burger, a pint of milk and the Swedes’ inability to say NO - Metropolitan Mum

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