Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Made in Belgium: Orion

I've greatly neglected fok music in my "made in Belgium" series lately.  But my love for folk music started with the Celtic Legacy CD at my host family in Canada, which played most nights before bedtime.  I grew quite fond of the sounds and the evening routine.
Much to my surprise I learned that one of the songs on the CD was by a Belgian folk group Orion.

Later on, I've been on many folk festivals in Belgium but never quite heard of them anymore. Nevertheless they are quite present online.  And I still enjoy their sound.

Sunday, 22 February 2015

A last walk in the snow??

We made it very briefly to the Ardennes today, up and down for the day.   Usually I don't have the motivation to go if we can only be there so briefly but I really felt like making another walk in the snow before it's gone.  

While the rest of Belgium starts dreaming of Spring, we headed back to the highest area of Belgium where the rain of the previous days has turned the area back a bit white just before it had all melted. The sun joined us as well, so it was great for a last walk in the winter wonderland. I guess it'll be gone by the next time we can get there...who knows.

Jan's still bugged by bugs so I had the honor to carry Kabouter on my belly while Jan trailed along at a little bit more distance. Just when I was going to suggest to extend our walk up to the next village at a road split, Kabouter had had enough of hanging idle so I did not need to pronounce the suggestion at all.  Fortunately I could magically turn up a cookie out of my pocket and we could make it back home in peace.

Friday, 20 February 2015

Why parent's get nothing done

This is circling on FB at the moment and it's hilarious (to young parents) as it is so recognisable and true.

  • Climbing in the dishwasher and unloading the cutlery while I'm loading or grabbing breakable dishes : check
  • Turning box with toys upside down as soon as we try to clean them up: check
  • Making a food mess and creating new hairstyles with banana & potatoes as starch : check
  • Placing hands in every possible mirror, preferably toothpaste saliva creamed hands, especially when it just got cleaned again: check
  • Taking things out of the garbage if he sees us throwing something in: check
  • Swimming through the dust if you've are sweeping the floor: check
  • Closing the fridge in between 2 items that you are taking out...but standing in the open fridge door that you are trying to close : check 
  • Running off with the socks that you are trying to pair again after laundry : check
  • Running off with your keys when you have to leave in a rush: check
  • Stretching out on toes and taking the cutlery that you've just put on the table before dinner: check
  • ....

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Sleeping beauty

When Jan was ill, Kabouter has gone to a new year's reception/party with me and stayed up longer than usual.  The next morning he slept in way longer than usual, so I went to check a few times.

But then you see this....

....and you






Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Made in Belgium: Zwartwerk

When I heard ZwartWerk on the radio this week, I first assumed they were Dutch.  It is my impression that there is a much more vivid hiphop scene in the Netherlands.
But I was wrong: these 4 young men from Mechelen, with roots in Angola & Congo have formed a band 1,5 years ago.   Last week, they got into the final of the StuBru contest "De nieuwe lichting" but didn't win.  Nevertheless they've been programmed at the festival Maanrock in Mechelen this summer.

Monday, 16 February 2015

Thinking of spring

On the one hand I am not ready for Spring yet...I want to spend a bit more time in the snow in the Ardennes.  Despite all the snow we have got there in the previous weeks, I feel like we've not fully enjoyed it yet.  Always someone was ill or ... But snow is melting there and I'm not sure if it'll come back again this winter.

On the other hand it was really soft weather this weekend and it felt so great to walk out (for a short distance to the car) in just my sweater. Ooh all of a sudden I longed so much for Spring.

The flowers in the house vote for Spring.

Friday, 13 February 2015


  • I saw a small crocodile being carried on a daddy's arm when I got out of the house.  
    My FB feed got filled with fairy's ,  a clown, a ninja , a mouse, a flamenco dancer, ... and an ex-colleague mentioned a Minion at home.  This week I saw at a school a lion, pipi long stocking, knights, thieves, ...

    Our own Kabouter didn't realize that he might have missed carnaval in daycare while still being ill at home with his dad. I don't know whether they celebrate it there or not or if this is only done in all schools. Anyway,  I already stress that in 2 years I'll clearly have to come up somehow with a fun kids costume on this day.  Help. 
  • Jan opened his pizza box and a spontaneous soft "ooh" escaped (he has almost no voice).
    Kabouter immediately opened my box and also announced a loud "OOOOH"

    We have a parrot in the house.
  • I managed to combine a business trip in a few weeks with a weekend city trip. yeah, looking
    forward to that!
  • My crocuses & hyacinth on the table start to bloom.
  • My new phone got activated.
  • The viruses still fight with my boys. 

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Boy's flu

The flu is in our house since a week, when Jan returned home from Paris sick.   You might not have noticed that it's been really quiet here, since I had been really blogging productive 10 days ago with more than a week worth of prescheduled posts (yeah, I'm a cheater :)).

Instead I've been busy visiting friends and family and doing a lot of shopping over the weekend, going to a volunteering meeting and a new year's reception with the little one...  By doing so I was giving Jan a bit of rest in a quiet house (that got replenished with food)  while at the same time I was hoping that Kabouter and I would have less opportunity to be caught by the bugs if we were out so often.   It's the first time I've seen Jan so sick for so long, not just miserable from man's flu but the real thing.

On Tuesday I picked up a highly feverish Kabouter from the daycare and I could spend part of my evening in the doctor's office.  It's amazing however how quickly such a little one can switch back and forth with the help of some fever medicine.

So far, touch wood, I am only very tired from rushing around without much time for myself in the evening and from sleeping badly with 2 sick boys in the house.  Oh well, it's almost weekend.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Ordinary things that make me happy

Lillith made a list of ordinary things that makes her happy, based on a column that is published each week.  I totally agree that happiness comes from the ability to enjoy ordinary daily things, so it can be worthwhile to list some of these.  
  • Listening to Kabouter's drinking on my chest, cosy on our bed in the semi-dark, just before he goes to sleep  (or when waking up).  
  • Coming home and finding a parking spot right in front of our house 
  • A tickle fight with Kabouter or Jan,  sitting together,  those 30 seconds of drowsy cheek-to-cheek when I carry him downstairs in the morning, ...or simply watching his adorable grin.
  • Realising that the book I just started to read is a page-thriller that will keep me going. 
  • Waking up and realizing I slept in
  • A beautiful orange ball rising up at the at the horizon in the morning when I drive to work...or some sunbeams falling through the forest on the golden leaves in the fall. 
  • Discovering a robin in the garden
  • Tortilla chips with salsa as appetizer
  • A good mojito in the summer
  • Waking up in winter time, consciously feeling the warm little nest that my bed has become and turning around once more for a snooze (or two or three)
  • Cooking a meal and being really proud of the result  
  • A summer evening late outside on the terrace, reading, talking , having a drink or smoking a water pipe while darkness falls, bats start flying by 
  • The purring of a cat on your lap
  • Dozing off on a sunbed...and allowing it to happen
  • Coming home on the day that the cleaning lady has come
  • Making a long walk in beautiful nature
  • Going under when scuba diving and hearing the bubbles of my breathing
  • A hug
  • Confusing/Amusing some Dutch colleagues/friends  with a Flemish phrase
  • Having my bangs cut finally after they had been annoyingly long for a few weeks 
  • Feeling the floor heating on my bare feet
  • A vase of tulips in Spring
  • Singing loudly along with the music in the car together with Jan  (while Kabouter in the back is clearly amused by his crazy parents)
  • A warm towel that has rested on the heating radiator after my shower
  • Unintended saying something silly and watching Jan start to laugh
  • Someone who passes you by on the bike, who is humming/singing along with his/her music
  • Reading the humoristic/sarcastic/creative tweets for a specific hash tag on twitter when something is getting mocked with reason in social media 
  • A toilet when I really need to go
  • A back or shoulder massage
  • The moment that you can slip into dry comfy & soft jogging suit after been out in the rain and cold
  • Your nose that pops open all of a sudden after having been clogged for hours
  • Spaghetti bolognaise or macaroni cheese or fries as comfort food after exhausting difficult day
  • Smelling my baby fresh out of bath
Do you wanna read what other people listed (in Dutch) ? Lillith listed the other blog posts

Thursday, 5 February 2015

White stuff

The air is filled with
                                    white stuff
The land is filled with 

You can't see where they touch.