Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Made in Belgium: Delvis

When I went to see Selah Sue in concert here in Leuven last November (see last video), she introduced a guy named Delv!s and had him programmed as entree act.   I'm honestly distracted by his preacher's beard, but he does have soul and funk.

So it's fun to notice that lately he is getting programmed more (e.g. is artist in residence of the concert hall Ancienne Belgique...that's how Selah Sue got started too and look where she's touring now!) and gets airplay and seems to start to make it. New talent is always needed!  Tell me is quite often on the radio in fact.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Waiting for the grass

After weeks of rain & bad weather delay, our grass finally has been sowed last week. And now summer is fully here and stays for another week so we gently spray the garden and wait patiently for the first sprouts to show.

And while we were at it, we also sprayed at the neighbours who also had a new zone of grass (under which we  jointly had pulled a bunch of cables). It's fun to be in a neighbourhood where people help each other where needed and it's fun to be able to return a favour.

Sunday, July 14, 2013


The usually very very quiet little village was swamped today for its yearly brocante flea market. As of 5 AM, cars drove up and down, unloaded hundreds of cardboard boxes full of junk and waited for the buyers to come.   The sun was overly present and so it was fun to stroll along although I still can't understand who on earth would buy these dusty books, grandmother's plates, third hand stained toys and other worthless stuff even almost for free. 

Unfortunately not many visitors want to use the grasslands offered as parking at the edge of the village but park all along the tiny little access roads, making it almost impossible to get in an out anymore.  One of the neighbors who needed an ambulance service (fortunately not the most critical emergency, nevertheless), experienced this first hand and the police that came and watch didn't seem very motivated to resolve this issue. Bleh.

Friday, July 12, 2013


Finally last Saturday the sun came out, the temperatures rose but didn't exaggerate (so weather didn't get killed right away with a heath thunderstorm)  and the nice weather already stayed for a week and is not going away just yet.

Yeaaaaay, yeaaaaay.

Everyone asks me concerned if I can cope the heat? Yeah, so far I can cope just fine. This is not a heatwave yet and I'm not in the end of my pregnancy yet.  And I thoroughly enjoy being able to lunch outside (with gazpacho! mmm) or sit with the windows open and wear my nicest pregnancy clothes that were all catered for summer weather.  And I'm looking forward to spend some time outside with friends in the garden or in the city this weekend. Or even when I'm working, it's simply more cheerful to see the sun outside.

I love summer! It makes me happy.

Yeaaaay :)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Made in Belgium: Troisseur

At the end of the 90ies, start of 2000 decade I was really into folk music and I roamed folk festivals, enthousiastically buying CD's from my new discoveries.  That's when once I saw Troisseur: a couple of guys wearing black long skirts, fiddling so energetically that the snares of their instrument broke, singing in an imaginary language.

I found their first album "Trah Njim" itself a bit repetitive, but last week I was at Beleuvenissen in Leuven and some other tribal folk band made me think of them again. They've never been a huge commercial success compared to some other Belgian folk bands, yet I still remember their once live performance I saw very well.

The group has stopped apparently in  2007 but some of the members  now have their own projects going on. I guess I should look them up.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

The miracle of an autonomously moving belly



Even more than feeling movement, it is eternally fascinating to watch my belly move, sudden little pop-ups here and there or a little wave coming by... I can spend the rest of the summer watching it.

Did you see it? (mostly at start of video's)

Monday, July 1, 2013

Fatigue, my new normal or why bananas are so much better than tomatoes

One always pities young parents because you know they are always sleep deprived.  I didn't know that that lack of sleep in fact started already 9 months before.

The first months of my pregnancy I was exhausted...I struggled constantly to stay awake.  Seriously , don't ask me what happened last winter as I slept through it.  I avoided meeting people or planning too much and tried to nap every free moment possible.  All my energy went to trying to perform my job as normal as possible (catching up some work if needed in weekend) and the rest could wait until after my nap.

I really looked forward to passing the 3 months mark as I had heard that my 2nd trimester would be much more energetic. I also planned my agenda consistent with that expectation.  (see travel madness and all the great foreign trip pictures that have appeared here late).  Well...that energy boost came with delay. It was only after more than 4,5 months that my constant need for day-time naps started to decrease.  But at the same time I started sleeping more badly.  Not only did I get to get up 2-4 times anymore to visit the bathroom, I also genuinely started to lay awake, twist and turn, ponder.   Well last May I was simply very stressed over silly things and my mind went in overdrive at night...making me exhausted and emotional the next day. All of that was a bit of an exhausting circle, combined with a busy travel scheme.

And than my stomac started to act up since the end of May.   While I had been so relieved not to have suffered much of morning sickness,  since reaching month 5 I have stomac acid that especially at night likes to come up, burn, burp, bloat, ... You can often see me in the evening/ at night pushing one finger just above my stomac to literrally push the burn quiet.  Pillows under my mattress to create an inclination, medication from the doctor, vanilla pudding, ice cream, ... Last weeks have been constant testing what could help as I can't fall asleep anymore laying fully flat or on my side (yes exactly how I want to sleep comfortably).

Conversations with other moms don't give me much hope.  Nobody had ever told me all those stories before of sleepless nights before giving birth, of trying to sleep "while sitting", of night time chores or tv watching, of drinking bottles of Gaviscon, ... in the last months.  Nobody makes it sound as it is a phase that will pass soon unfortunately.

Carefully monitoring meals, especially dinners without acids (ooooh the horror of tomatoes in my food lately!!  Tomatoes turn me in a serious contestant of the world championship burping) seems to be helping most. A lot of delicious fruits, vegetables and greasy foods are put on my personal forbidden list, but eating a banana as late night snack seems a good natural medicine against stomac acid.  But still...lots of bad nights alternate with several good ones. I hope that doesn't last for the entire 3 last months of pregnancy.   Can I try to catch up sleep a bit before the birth?  Please?  If I'm sleeping fine, this pregnancy is totally a joy.  Nothing beats the giggles that a moving belly give you :).