Ruins in the cradle of Sweden.

4:30 am today.

My body feels old, really old today. To work in a factory beside a huge washing machine and two huge hot paint ovens during a heat wave takes its toll, still I didn’t paint today so it could have been worse to be honest. Even if we drink a lot of water and tries to get to cooler places the brains stops to function after a while 🙂 🙂 🙂 But I managed to fix the AC to the office so at the end of the day the room got so cold it almost hurt to sit in there 🙂 🙂 🙂


I promised to show some more ruins in todays post. The church is still standing though. It is Varnhems Monastery church. It is at least as old as the ruins in Gudhem, so that would be from around early 1100.



I never walked in to the area though. They actually take an entrance fee now days. This church is very important historically because here is the mane that created the country Sweden buried.


The man was called Birger Jarl, Jarl being a title. He never became a king but his son did. He was a cruel leader and didn’t hesitate to lie to get where he wanted. Before him Sweden mostly were small kingdoms that constantly were in fight with each other.


I don’t know why but my mind wondered backwards in time to two places all day. Both places where we used to bathe, one by the sea and one by a lake. We used to catch crabs by the ocean using clams as bate. It usually worked just fine and we got lots of them. Many of the crabs had different colors underneath, some yellow, some orange and some red as I remember it. I’ve never learned if that color actually meant something special, but we used to see how many of each kind we could get 🙂 When I was much older I did the same again and brought both crabs and sea water home to an aquarium I had. The crabs lived in it all summer and every now and again I drove down to the sea to get new sea water. I put them all back before autumn returned and all lived 🙂


His grave is inside the church ( he died 1266) and next time I’ll bring some cash so I can go in and take some photographs inside the church.



Birger Jarl was born not far away from here and this is now days seen as the cradle of Sweden. It was people in this area that wanted the country to grow but the power moved away from here to what now days is our Capital, Stockholm. Stockholm is founded by Birger I’ve heard.



The lake was close to our summer cottage and I used to fish there. Twenty years of fishing and not even once I caught anything 🙂 🙂 🙂 Friends and relatives did but never I 🙂 So one day when I was a bit older I drove there with a small hoop-net and caught some young fish with it and brought home to my aquarium. They lived there until next summer when they were returned to the lake again. That warm winter made they grow rather much so I hope they got a good start when coming home to the lake again 🙂


The area around the church isn’t that bad either 🙂




This is a café just outside the Monastery. I was wondering if I shopuld stop there for a cup of coffee and something else when suddenly a cat came running like crazy. Jumping over fences and under tables at the café. After it a huge Rotweiller came and took just the same route creating a bit of chaos since it didn’t take the curves just as well as the cat did 🙂 So I decided to drive home instead 🙂


I’ve paid my bills and now I’ll stay away from the sun as much as possible 🙂 Not even Nova wants to go outside and play. It really is warm if that happens 🙂 All animals are sleeping here on the bottom floor where it is a bit cooler. I’ve tried to make them go down in to the cool cellar but they only stay as long as I’m there and that place is a bit too cool for me 🙂 I rather sit here by the kitchen door, every now and again a weak breeze flies through and it feels so nice 🙂

Have a great day!


20 thoughts on “Ruins in the cradle of Sweden.

  1. Det låter så avslappat och skönt – och bilderna var gudomliga! 🙂 Här är det lika varmt, så idag har jag ägnat mig åt min favoritsyssla; vattnat!! 🙂 :-))
    Fast mellan flyttning av vattenspridare (Nyinköpt idag – konstigt att dom alltid bara håller 2 år!?) har jag också planterat lite sommarblommor. Inte speciellt kul i värmen och den stekande solen, men det måste ju göras innan dom smäller av.
    Nu äntligen kan jag ägna mig åt trädgården några dagar eftersom den andra tjejgruppen åkt hem, men redan på måndag morgon ska jag till Stockholm för ett sjukhusbesök – så det gäller ju att man vattnar innan. Annars blir Rolle galen på mig och mina växter. Det får räcka med att han måste vattna dom c:a 35 krukor jag har placerat ut både här och där, tycker han!

    • Hejsan Susie!
      Varnhem är väldigt vackert men kanske inte alltid så avslappnat med alla bussturister som kommer dit numera 🙂

      Jag behöver inte vattna i trädgården, här är markena fortfarande rätt så blöta, men lite krukor blir det allt. Men så är det ju moss och kärrmarkr i hela områddet här.
      Hoppas sjukhusbesöket går bra!

      Ha det gott!

  2. hi christer! it seems that we are having the same wrather though ours is a bit hotter. it is hot at night which i really don’t like at all. teddy stays inside a lot too. and it will get even hotter in the next few days. i baked pies so my kitchen now feels like hell! those ruins and the area around them are beautiful! try to stay cool! joyce

    • Hi Joyce!
      Yes we do but your weather isn’t a bit warmer, it is much warmer 🙂 🙂 It is days like this I do appreciate living in a cooler climate 🙂 I’m not sure I would leave home if we had it that hot here 🙂

      You really must love pies if You’re baking them in this hot weather!

      Isn’t it strange how we all seems to think ruins are beautiful? I do and love to walk around in them. I guess our imaginations makes us love them.

      I’ll stay as cool as I can and I hope You’ll do the same!

    • Tjänare Monne!
      Jo här är vackert och det skall visst finnas flera ruiner här efter slott och kyrkor, det gäller bara att hitta dem 🙂

      Här dog den lilla vind vi hade så nu är det fritt fram för myggen, kliar precis överallt nu 🙂

      Ha det gott!

  3. Oh how I’d love to tour the Monastery. I would have stopped for coffee and cake. The roadside inn looks so inviting. Great post today Christer. Sorry to read the weather is uncomfortable. We are used to it here in Florida. But never until this year had to put on the air conditioning in May. A rather low rated Hurricane is hovering off the north coast. It may make landfall in Jacksonville over the weekend which means rain for us down here.

    • Hi Z&M!
      I’ll bring cash next time so I can take some photographs inside the old church too. But after seeing that dog I just longed for home 🙂

      I wouldn’t mind this weather as much if it hadn’t come so suddenly. To go from 50F to 80F in three days is just to fast! Next week it’ll go back to around 53f again and then it will feel cold 🙂 🙂 🙂 Air conditioners are rare in homes over here, we may get to use them one or two weeks every summer 🙂 🙂 🙂

      I hope that hurricane will stay low rated!

      Have a great day!

  4. I do love those slender arches. Hard to believe they are that old. We need rain here in Ontario Canada, many forest fires. My rain barrel is empty. Not as hot here, though.

    • Hi Lois!
      Me too! I always look for arches first when I come to a church or monastery ruin. It’s something with them I like that I can’t describe.

      No rain needed here yet. I stood on my knees when taking a photograph this morning and got soaking wet, so I hope for many more days with dry weather 🙂 But I do hope You’ll get rain since forest fires can be devastating!

      Have a great day!

  5. Hi Christer,
    Sorry you never caught any fish in your childhood lake. I never did either but I wasn’t trying to. I just liked to take the boat out by myself in the early morning and look as if I was fishing. No one would bother me if they thought I was and I could enjoy the silence. 🙂

    The cafe is very welcoming. I would have gone in just because of the cat and dog incident. Very funny.

    It’s Memorial Day this weekend so I went to the cemetery to put flowers on my father’s grave. First I had to go to the garden center to get some flowers. Of course I got some flowers for me as well. I got an aquilegia, forget-me-not, another white daisy that I forget the name of and some alyssum. I’ll stick them on the side of the house with the peonies. The dirt is already dug up there so less work for me. 🙂

    Enjoy your day and I hope the weather cools down for you. It’s heating up for us. 🙂

    • Hi Caryn!
      To be honest, catching any fish has never been that important to me. I just like to sit there and having a great pick-nick basket with me 🙂 🙂 So we really did much the same thing 🙂

      It is a nice café but I started to long after my dogs and cats when I saw this 🙂 I could see that the dog just had a very good time but I’m not so sure about the cat though 🙂 🙂 🙂
      I did go to my favorite garden center while I was in the area and bought some Hosta. They are now planted by the pond after a thorough check after snails or/and snail eggs 🙂 I had to cut through a ground carpet before I could plant them and it was a bit tougher than I thought it would be in the heat 🙂

      It will cool down now and in the middle of next week it will be cold!

      Have a great day!

  6. Hello. That’s a very beautiful church and hardly looks ruined at all from the outside. Here in the UK a lot of rural churches are no longer used and are sold to whoever might have a use for them: as community centres, business or residences. I don’t know if that happens in Sweden. but I’m sure it wouldn’t happen to one of such historic importance.
    Glad you are having such warm weather; it’s only 22 °C here, but that’s pleasant enough.
    This is a beautiful blog; thank you for doing it. regards, Tony

    • Hi thelittlehouseiusedtolivein and welcome to my blog 🙂

      No the church is still intact but the old monastery is in ruins.
      They have started to sell churches here too now days and why not if no one use it any longer. But this church, as You say, will never be sold. To much historic importance to it. Tourist buses goes there several times every day because this place is very important in some of the most popular books up here.

      Thankfully the temperature is less high today and the wind blows some so I could mow the lawn without boiling 🙂

      Have a great day Tony and welcome back 🙂

  7. this post makes me smile. you catching crabs and fish and then releasing them instead of making a meal of them. 🙂 🙂 🙂
    that’s why i like you, such a kind heart.
    love the photos of the ruins 😀 very cool.

    • Hi Cindi!
      I enjoy sitting there with a nice pick-nick basket more than any catch to be honest 🙂

      Have a great day!

  8. Thanks, Christer! It felt as though I was really visiting the ruins. I suppose we like them because they transport us to another time and we can imagine what it must have been like and, quite frankly, I think their architecture is so much better from what we have, today. I had to repair my porch rood, this day. When it rained, the water came pouring in on one side. After removing the shingles, I found a great big hole and so much nesting material, you would have thought a falcon had roosted there! 😎 😎 She had made quite a nice home for herself and family. Now, she can only wonder what happened because everything has been fixed and there’s no place for her to enter. I did see a dove walking back and forth on the roof, later in the day, and wondered if it was her home I’d gotten rid of… Didn’t mean to but it’s my house and my porch was getting water all over the place… Have a great day. I think I’ll have some tea on my porch…

    • Hi Sharlene!
      Yes the architecture was so much better back then, but the health care not so much 🙂 🙂 🙂

      I have house sparrows nesting beneath the tiles and some wasps too but that’s it 🙂 I guess it was the dove but how did she figure out that there was a hole there? They are smarter than we think sometimes 🙂

      I wish I had a porch! We had one in our summer house when I grew up. I loved sitting there early mornings drinking tea and eating buns 🙂 🙂 Summer houses always have that smell a normal home never has, When ever I feel that smell I come back to that porch in my mind 🙂

      Have a great day!

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