Tuesday, 25 January 2011


Time to catch up with our trip North!
New years eve sees us not wildly partying but playing musical bunk beds on the overnight train! The children are not impressed at having to share a bunk bed but decide that the one in the heavens actually makes a good den! Midnight finds us all fast asleep somewhere in the middle of Finland.

We are jolted awake as we arrive at Kolari station and despite the fact that it is well past 9am it is dark. Olli goes to fetch the car which has travelled with us.
The scenery is amazing, due to the fact that the light is so low and everything is coated in snow. It gives everything a monochromatic look. We also spotted reindeer roaming around, digging in the snow for food! 

On Sunday we headed for the Snow Village, which is built every year from snow and ice. It is basically a hotel, with rooms made out of snow, like igloos and beds and chairs carved out of ice. It is beautifully lit and there is even a small chapel!

We opted for supper in the ice restaurant - amazing. Ice table and chairs, food on wooden plates that don't cool as quick. You need to eat with your coat and hat on and you don't dawdle over your meal either.

Monday saw us hit the slopes, the children into ski school, Olli up to the top in the gondola and I, due to dodgy hip, wandering around taking photos and drinking coffee! How did Diabetes manage with all this? Well we were prepared for lows, big time,especially with  90 minutes ski school for 3 days. But no, high, high and higher! We made sure his pump was well insulated, tucked in pants, long johns, ski trousers and no dangling tubes - no frozen insulin thank you. We didn't quite anticipate the pounding the quick set plaster would take on his bottom due to wipeouts! We have now discovered that quick sets and also the CGM sensors do not like skiing and sledging that involves bouncing on one's bottom!!
Tuesday night promised to be a clear night so I set off at 9.30 pm on a mission. I have always wanted to see the Northern lights and here was my chance. I really didn't know what I was looking for but headed off up the hill,found a lay-by and parked the car. Armed with hot juice and camera I waded into thigh deep snow to find a good look out spot. The sky was so clear and there were thousands of stars. I sat in a little snow hole I had made  and waited. The sky changed and suddenly there appeared to be a cloud in the sky.  I took a photo and only when I looked at the screen realised the cloud was green! I had found them! I spent the next 30 minutes mesmerised and pretty chilly, not daring to move too much due to said dodgy hip and the fact that I was sitting on a slope and couldn't see the bottom! What an experience - the photos say it all....
The days were short, dark by 3pm and also cold, minus 25 degrees Celsius on the Wednesday but that did not deter us from enjoying a fun week. Friday saw us head home on the overnight train, mobile pharmacy in tow! Helsinki beckoned at just after 6 in the morning.  The cars were promptly offloaded and we were home by 7 - a fascinating trip in many ways, to be recommended!


  1. oh wow! thanks for sharing the photos and story of your trip. it looks beautiful and sounds like so much fun! I am from Upstate NY and I used to go cross country skiing at a place called Lapland Lake...your post reminded me of it! Of course..not quite as stunning as real life Lapland!

  2. What an amazing trip! I'm so glad you braved the cold and took the plunge! The pictures are spectacular. Awesome!

  3. Soooooooooo beautiful! All the photos, really, but especially the northern lights. And eating in an ice restaurant? My kiddos would flip! Thanks for the journey in pictures.

  4. I would LOVE to see the northern lights! Your photos are amazing.

  5. How beautiful! I saw the Northern Lights when I was a teenager, and they looked exactly like your pictures. One of the most amazing things I've ever seen.

    What a fun trip!