Meet Mom Maja from Lomma in Sweden…
Hi my name is Maja Lindberg. Me and my husband Måns, our two children, Morris (12) and Minna (6) lives in the south of Sweden in a small community called Lomma.
I have always been a crafty person and as a 23 year-old girl I started my career as a ceramic artist, after a few years I decided to get an education in IT instead. I worked as an webassistent for a couple of years. But in 2005 Måns got the opportunity to work in China. We lived in Beijing for three years and enjoyed the life there very much. When we returned to Sweden I realized that I forgot all about my IT-skills. Instead I began to draw and making pattern designs which I published on my blog. Last fall I focused more on my Illustrations and I started up a shop on Etsy. My illustrations are kind of mysterious and dreamy, and I believe the viewer get a little bit curious when looking at them. The motifs are mainly children and animals, my dream is to illustrate a children’s book.
What kind of house do you live in – are you and the kids happy here or is there anything you find lacking or would like to change?
Lomma is close to the sea but only 15 minutes away from the bigger cities, Malmo and Lund. Our house is from the 40’s. It’s not a huge house, but the basement gives a lot of extra space. We bought the house from an older couple who had lived here since it was built. We are almost done with the renovation inside. Next year we’ll have to concentrate on the garden and the exterior. The color of the house is “pinkish”, not the color I would choose, but this is hopefully being changed soon.
What is it you like best about living here?
The closeness to the sea, especially in the spring and the summer when you can take the bike, the picnic bag and just head down to the beach.
Do you like to spend time on decorating your home and the children’s room?
I do like decorating, but I was more active when the kids were smaller. Now the children has their own ideas how things should be, and I try my best to let them decide. But sometimes I have to help them sort out things, especially Minna has an ability to collect all sort of things. Right now she’s in a period of building cages for all of her soft animals. It gets a bit crowded on the floor.
Do you keep your children’s play areas very separate or do you believe they should have a space in every part of the house?
Since the children’s bedrooms are quite small, we have made a play/computer/music/tv room in the basement. So when they have friends over that’s mostly where they are hanging out.
What are your children’s favorite items in your house?
Morris loves the computer and uses it a lot, mostly for games and watching YouTube, but he has also started to learn programming and enjoys playing around with Photoshop and other applications.
Minna’s favorite items are probably her stuffed animals especially a big Collie-dog that she bought at a flee-market last year. I think it’s horrible but she really loves it.
What places in your new neighborhood do you like to go to for shopping?
Lomma doesn’t have many stores, mostly grocery shops, but we have one small shop that is great! They have most of the things that you need in your home. Tools, paint, lamps, frying pans, toasters, coffee machines, christmas decoration, etc. So this is definitely the store you go to if you are missing something at home.
What's it like to raise a child in your town?
When Morris was born, we lived in the city of Malmö. We enjoyed the city a lot, but I didn’t feel comfortable by letting Morris go outside by his own (except in our own garden). Here in Lomma it feels much safer, our street is an impasse so the kids can be out playing and biking. Lomma has one of the best schools in Sweden, so that’s also a good thing about living here.
Can you mention some of your ‘how-to-raise-your-kid’ values?
I believe we are quite open-minded when it comes to raising our kids. I try to focus on being humble and to treat people the same way that you would like to be treated.
What kind of DIY projects do you like to do with your children?
Morris likes to draw a lot, but he also likes folding paper, before it was mostly airplanes, but now it’s animals and other complicated objects.
Minna is more into painting (with lots of colors). She also likes beading and making things out of shoeboxes.
Are you a crafter or DIY person?
I guess I’m both!
How do you like to celebrate birthdays and other special days in your house?
We usually set up a theme for the birthday parties. I believe it’s easier to plan when you have something to spin around. Last time it was a djungle-party that we decorated with fruits, soft animals and made paper lianas of green and yellow paper. The year before that we had a classical pink princess-party with cupcakes and crowns.
What are some favorite games in your home?
Since Morris is six years older than Minna, and they don’t have the same interests we found out that the one thing that everyone likes is boardgames. A lot of card playing but also tactic games as The Settlers and Ticket to ride are very popular.
What kind of sports do your children like to do and are you very involved?
Unfortunately, we are not a very sporty family, except Minna that has energy for all of us. She loves dancing and goes to dancing class once a week.
Last year we went to the Swedish mountains for skiing. It was the first time for the kids, but they did great and liked it a lot. So hopefully we will continue doing that next year.
Are there musical instruments in your house?
Morris plays the piano.
What are all time favorite books for the children?
I must say that both Minna’s and Morris’ favorite book were “Where’s Waldo”. A book where you look for Waldo and his friends in a crowded space. I’m so sick of that book and would much more prefer to read Astrid Lindgren instead, but the kids has never been that much interested in Pippi Longstocking and the other characters.
How do you get your books? Bookstores? Online?
I mostly buy the books in the bookstore. For me, the pictures are the most important, so I want to take a deep look into the books before I buy them. I also buy a lot of children’s books at flea markets.
Do your children read books online? Do they go to the library?
Me and Minna goes to the library a lot. Right now she is very into books about dogs and horses. I let her choose the books, hoping that this era soon will end.
What are nice activities you can do with children in your place and what could you recommend when people are visiting?
In summer there is the beach of course. We also have a lovely park, Alnarp, that is an agricultural university but can be used by everyone for a stroll and look at all of the amazing plants.
In the winter you can go iceskating on the ponds or sledding down the hills.
What movies do your children like to watch, is there one from your childhood you would love to show them too?
We all like the Pixar-movies a lot.
I used to love the music and the movie Grease when I was a kid, so recently I bought the dvd. Minna loves it, though she doesn’t understand much of it. Mamma Mia is also one of her favorite movies.
Are you a ‘cook’ or ‘food lover’ or both?
I’ m more of a food lover.
Do you cook together with your children? Does Dad cook?
I cook most of the meals in the week, but when we have guests over, Måns is the one that plans and prepare the dinner.
What kind of place do you like to go to on vacation with and without the children?
When we lived in China, we had the opportunity to travel quite a lot in Asia. Minna was smaller then so we mostly travelled to sunny resorts, like Thailand, Bali and Vietnam. Now when the kids are bigger I could imagine us going to bigger cities, like New York, London and Paris. But right now I’m longing for the sun.
Every summer we spend at least two weeks at my family’s summerhouse. It’s on the eastcoast, only an hour away from Lomma. The half-timbered house is situated in a small village surrounded by forests, fields, hills and only a five minute walk to the most beautiful beach in the world. It’s my paradise!
What place do your children love to go to?
They would probably prefer going to warm countries, with lots of bathing and adventures. If they where to choose they probably would go to Disneyland.
Tips for traveling in a plane or a long road trip with children?
Let the children pack their own little bag with crayons, card games, some toy and iPod (with some of their own music and perhaps an audiobook on). I usually buy them a small surprise (can be a magazine, or something crafty) that I give them when they start to get bored.