It’s hard to imagine that at this time just 3 weeks ago, we were hanging out in the Frankfurt airport on our journey to Denmark.
The boys have been at school for two weeks and have settled in nicely. The staff and families are fantastic. Such a positive and happy school. We’ve seen M’s confidence really begin to rise. I’m so glad for that. He has settled into his class quite well. E has also gotten right into the swing of things. This morning, his teacher told me that they hadn’t heard much from him – that he is fairly quiet. Then, one day in music class, he was really getting into it in a small group. It’s so much easier when the kids are settled into a routine and meeting friends. It’s quite helpful!
We have kept busy socially with many of the other expats from around… the world, I suppose. People are beginning to pick up the Christmas spirit here. The gloomy weather and dark nights have folks looking forward to holiday celebrations and cheery decorations. Only a few of us celebrate Thanksgiving and we will be preparing for that soon.
Last night, we attended a meeting about the school’s future growth and construction. Next summer, the public school will finish out its term and then vacate. ISB will begin construction at some point after that, and will hopefully be prepared with new classrooms, and indoor/outdoor experiences particularly designed for the woodshop and sciences. I really, really love how the Danish incorporate nature into schools and as part of the kids’ studies. There will be music rooms, a stage, drama room, more staff space and a re-designed kindergarten, and of course, more classrooms for bigger kids. It seems like an exciting time to be part of the school. It will be growing along with our boys.
Coming up, there is a dads’ beer afternoon for J, kid trade-off, then moms’ book club for me. I asked if they were finishing the book – would it be strange to come? A couple said – book? what book? ha-ha. Ok then. I’m in. This weekend, we will probably unwind some and do a touch of shopping in preparation for an International Christmas Party next Thursday. E’s birthday is also Thursday, so I guess we will be having a Christmas-themed birthday party for him! ha-ha. I told him Santa would be there and he was soooo excited! The REAL Santa?!?!
We hope to get in some daytrips to other areas while still figuring out all the details of life here: doctors (thanks to an icky case of strep throat, I know mine now!), drivers’ licenses, housing, and everything else. It’s all been quite good! Folks are so kind and welcoming – it’s really fantastic and quite remarkable what a cool little community this is! We are enjoying it so far.
ps: J here, I’m gonna tack onto B’s Week 3 post w/ my own update. Hard to believe it’s been 3 weeks! The town continues to get smaller as we figure out how to get everywhere (and also now that I’ve walked home from work a few times – a brisk, chilly 30 minutes). We’ve made a few funny bumbles here and there (mistakenly buying kids’ beer, or yogurt instead of milk, and running out of TP a few times at night when most stores are closed) but for the most part, it’s been a smooth transition thanks to the efforts of our relo peeps at LEGO and TEAM and the very helpful, very friendly expat and school community – not to mention all of the folks I’ve been meeting at work. We’ve had a pretty full social calendar!
Work has been terrific so far. I integrated into the group very quickly thanks to a series of one-on-ones with everyone on the team. Lots of varied experience across the other creative managers, producers, and marketers in the group, and we have a ton of exciting projects in development and in planning phases, for console, online, and mobile. Of course, I can’t detail the projects I’m specifically working on, but they are super-exciting and I think I’ve (re)joined the company at the right time!
We are settling into a nice routine so far with school, work, and evenings at home (although mornings are still a bit rough – the kids have a tough time getting up when it’s still dark out). Work day goes from 8 to 4, every day – seriously, people clear out at 4 and head home to pick up kids from school, hit the grocery on the way home, or just go to be with their families. So far, the most challenging thing has been translating all of the mail we’ve been getting – but at least the experience of typing it all into Google Translate is giving me some nice practice with the language and vocabulary.
Anyway, since I can’t say much about what I’m doing at work, at least I can describe a bit about what it’s like there:
- People drink coffee all day long, it seems. Nice big fancy machines in every area. Yet they only fill the provided cups 3/4 of the way full! Maybe that’s why we all wind up drinking more coffee…
- There’s no soda in the entire building (though I think people have some stashes here and there). Good for me as I gave it up for the most part years ago (except at the movies).
- The ‘no soda rule’ is part of a LEGO-wide policy to eliminate sweets in the workplace – quite a difference from studios where there were always plenty of candy bars, chips, and other goodies in the kitchen – especially during crunch time (which lasted for months at a time – man, I look back at pics when I was in my mid 20s, and no wonder I put on so much weight!) At LEGO, the only snacks available during the day are apples, pears, carrots, and some fresh bread and rolls. That’s what you snack on during the day if the urge hits you.
- However, the lunch at the company canteen is so good that I find I don’t need to snack much anyway (plus I’m pretty busy as it is). I’ll do a separate post about the lunch at work, but it’s an awesome perk – the equivalent of 4 dollars gets you a buffet of hot dishes, salads, sides, bread and more – plus lots of Danish cuisine to try out. I’ve been enjoying it so much that I’ve been turning down my co-workers’ invitations to “eat dirty” – their term for grabbing lunch from one of the pizzerias in town (yes, the ones that put salad on pizza).
- Yes, there are LEGO sets EVERYWHERE. Most are in boxes, but lots of people have models built and displayed on their desks. I haven’t even had time to assemble anything yet, but if I go across the way to the next building, there’s a huge warehouse in the basement with bins and bins and bins of every type of brick imaginable (similar to the setup we had at the studio in Colorado). You can just go over there, fill up a bin with materials for whatever personal project you want to build, and then take it back to your desk (or build there at one of the many tables and carrels set up for that.) Only caveat is that you cannot take the bricks home with you – company use only.
- The Employee Store is a very, very dangerous place. That’s all I will say about that.
Okay, the kids are finally asleep and B is out for the evening with the “Book Club,” and I hear the PS4 calling my name upstairs. So that’s it for now. Hej hej!