Category Archives: Culture

Ever sneak a little slice that you thought no one would notice?

Ever sneak a little slice that you thought no one would notice? Were you in a house where the Vinarterta was treasured and tasted so much like home you couldn’t resist? And on the most special of occasions where it sat wrapped and tauntingly tasty; did you ever NOT slice a paper thin sliver, again […]

Culture is all the ways we remember, tell and celebrate our stories.

Culture is all the ways we remember, tell and celebrate our stories. This photo is of a print that was on the wall at Lónkot in Skagafjörður, Iceland (a beautiful Guest House) near where vagabond artist and poet Sölvi Helgason (1820-1895) was born. An interesting character, he called himself ‘Sólon Íslandus’ and believed that he […]

I hope there is Vínarterta

Many Large ‘Amma’ Vínarterta were delivered to Vancouver for a very special event; the Icelandic National League of North America INLofNA Convention. At breakfast on the first morning I heard someone say longingly: “I hope there is Vinarterta.” I realize some people probably know more than I do about Vinarterta, and the power of it […]

Seven Layered Vínarterta (Not Six)

“How then are we to relate to our ancestors? How are we to feel ourselves in some meaningful way Icelandic and in a direct line of descent of Icelandic values and an Icelandic way of life? Well, for Western Icelanders here in North America the answer is a practical and pragmatic one. We use food. […]

I come completely from the mountains.

“Ég kem alveg af fjöllum.” I come completely from the mountains. – Icelandic Saying (Means for example: I have no idea what you are talking about. I did not eat that cake.) Useful especially for people who are known to sneak little pieces of Vínarterta (in little slivers) thinking no one will notice. Well, since […]

The thing that’s seldom is wonderful.

“An rud is annamh is iontach.” = The thing that’s seldom is wonderful. – Irish Saying Happy St.Patrick’s Day with a nod to our Icelandic – Irish heritage with a beautiful unexpected green Icelandic wool rose patterned historic textile from Norska húsið (the Norwegian House) Stykkishólmur, Iceland Photo: Arden Jackson

It’s not how much you do…

“It’s not how much you do, but how much love you put into the doing that matters.” – Mother Teresa Arden Jackson Photo: David Snow

No Mitten-Grabbing!

Icelandic Saying: “Now there won’t do any mitten-takes” =  “Nú duga engin vettlingatök.” (Meaning: Now we are going to do it properly.) No mitten-grabbing! If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well! (I hear Amma!) With this level of translation required, no wonder it’s hard to learn Icelandic. And yet, when you think about it, […]