I Jesu navn går vi til bords
å spise, drikke på ditt ord.
Deg, Gud til ære, oss til gavn,
Så får vi mat i Jesu navn.
In Jesus’ name to the table we go
To eat and drink according to His word.
To God the honor, us the gain,
So we have food in Jesus’ name.
This morning, we said this sweet blessing before enjoying some Danish sour cream waffles. We have finished our week in Denmark and it feels like it went so quickly. There were crafts we didn’t get to and stories yet to be read. When I started traveling years ago someone told me “You always want to leave a place with a reason to come back.” I think I could use that for this study as well and we’ll have several reasons to learn more about Denmark in the future.
Danish Sour Cream Waffles
For our farewell dinner, we had ham (I fully intended this to be a home-baked Christmas-style Viking ham, but ended up purchasing a ham at the grocery store and just making the vegetable/fruit puree to go on top), Danish potato salad, Scandinavian Yellow Split Pea Soup, Rye Bread, and crown cookies with Rice Pudding for dessert. We shared this dinner with several friends and enjoyed each bite while also enjoying great conversation.
Danish Potato Salad
Scandinavian Yellow Split Pea Soup
Before our guests arrived, Tallinn made place cards for each attendee. Using red construction paper, he drew a white cross, then wrote each person’s name-often upside down. This was a fun way to remember this special country during our meal.
Danish Flag Place cards
Thank you, Denmark! We hope to continue our learning adventure about your country one day soon, until then, afsked (farewell).
Okay, so today’s crafts didn’t quite go as planned. I had envisioned my children each decorating a Danish-style blue and white plate with fun designs resembling those found in Denmark. Hmm, well, let’s just say we didn’t quite meet my standards. This was partly, actually completely, due to the fact that when I went to purchase the plate-making kit I didn’t realize it was a pre-made ceramic plate with markers to design it. I thought the kit was for the send-away plates that you color on paper first, then the company makes it into a fun plate.
So, my plate set only had 1 plate and I let Tallinn design it and promised Addie to buy her one as trying to get them to share a plate proved difficult. Samples of Danish plates were printed for Tallinn to get ideas from and, after starting with a great design, he decided to just fill the whole plate in with blue “for boys”, he said. There went my wonderful vision of us dining on elaborate Danish plates for years to come. The funny thing is that Tallinn’s drawings lately have really gotten detailed and fun, so this was a little bit shocking to me.
The beginning when there was a little bit of a design in the middle
Finished "boy" plate
Oh well, we’ll try again with Addie when we get another plate. Fortunately, I used my 40% off coupon and don’t feel like it was a huge waste of money.
The other predicament for today was that, after searching two nurseries, it would appear that Marguerite Daisies are not quite in season. We searched high and low and came out dry and decided to settle for some “look-alike” marguerites. I know, I know, the kids don’t even care, and they look pretty similar to the real thing, even if they are a knock-off. Sitting in their sweet swan plant holders, they do actually look quite cute.
I’m not sure I really knew, before beginning this study, that The Ugly Duckling was written by Hans Christian Andersen. It’s such a sweet story for even small children to understand about not treating others poorly just because they look different. I also didn’t know and LOVE that the national bird of Denmark is the mute swan. As this didn’t happen until 1984, I’m guessing it had everything to do with this famous story.
And, as usual, there is so much more I didn’t know about Denmark and the Danes. Like the fact that it is one of the oldest kingdoms in the world with perhaps the oldest flag in the world. I also had no idea that Greenland and the Faroe islands are considered part of Denmark and that the nation gives about 10 percent of its gross national product to countries in need.
The more I learn, the more impressed I am with this Scandinavian wonder. I found a wonderful site with loads of great information about Denmark at
that is full of history and beautiful images.
Today as we discussed the sweet story about a little swan who sadly finds himself cast out of his supposed family of ducks, we began making our own little swans. While I couldn’t find many traditional Danish crafts online, I found several crafts for swans and this one, from www.education.com, seemed perfect.
Using empty milk cartons, I cut the cartons horizontal in a type of zig-zag fashion, keeping the handle in tact.
Next, the kids each painted their milk carton white.
A crumpled up white napkin was glued on as the head and construction paper eyes and a beak were added.
- The Beautiful Swan
Now, it’s off to the nursery to buy a Marguerite Daisy (hopefully, it’s the national flower of Denmark) to plant inside.
In the land of vikings and wooden shoes and blue and white porcelain plates and dishes, we have arrived! We are happy here, reading the stories of Hans Christian Anderson, draping ourselves with the fun Danish garland my darling friend Kathleen purchased for us in Solvang, along with a few Danish trinkets. I love it!
Thank you, Kathleen!
Our garland's new home.
And, before we began the embrace of all things Danish (not to be confused with “Dutch” as I often find myself doing) we recapped our previous destinations, going backwards on our journey through the world alphabetically. I’m amazed at what my kids (mostly Tallinn) have retained! This morning as we began, so also began the hollering and excitement of a new country to visit, making this choice to take a learning voyage all the more worth it!
In typical Monday fashion, we began with geography, finding Denmark near Austria (at least that’s the one they know thus far) and starring Copenhagen, it’s culturally fantastic capitol city. The kids colored their maps, shaded the red areas of the flag and then we did another bead flag craft. For some reason this time I chose much smaller beads, mostly because I already had one color and wanted to save money. However, this meant that I primarily made the flags because even Tallinn found stringing the beads really tiring after the first four or five safety pins were complete. So, I did the remaining nine or so, while the kids got some wiggles out, and I didn’t mind at all.
A little later we began our literature study, which is what we are going to focus a bit more on this week. We read “The Ugly Duckling” and hope to visit the library tomorrow to get some more books by Hans Christian Anderson. But, one day at a time.
While the kids were coloring, we learned our new verse:
May all the kings of the earth praise
you, O LORD,
when they hear the words of your