Friday, March 18, 2011

St Patty's day...

We went to my new friend Diana's house (I met her in my Dutch class) for bangers and mash and met some really great people.  It was a table of expats from England, the US, and South Africa and a great mix of very interesting people.  There was a stem cell scientist (interesting to me for obvious reasons), a photographer, a chemist, and a roller derby-er (she started the Belgian league) that made up part of the dinner party.  Good food, good wine, and great conversation made for an incredible night to remember!!!


B posing in her St Patty's day dress (a dance costume Marie gave her:)




Diana in her awesome industrial kitchen

The bangers and mash


The group

Jess from South Africa...so sweet!

B hard at work.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Antwerp Zoo

It was a beautiful day today, 59 degrees, so we took the kids to the Antwerp zoo.  It is a beautiful park in the middle of the city and right next to the central station.  We took the train in, the highlight of Bronwen’s day, and spent the afternoon strolling through the zoo.  We ended are trip at an Italian restaurant on the main shopping strip where we sat outside and enjoyed a pizza and a glass of wine/beer while the kids slept.  What a great day!!!

Bronwen met a little girl on the train ride in and they played like they’d been friends their whole lives. As fate would have it we ended up on the same train and in the same car on our way home so again the girls got to play together. The little girl’s mom and I exchanged information so that hopefully we can set up a play date in the near future since they played so well together.



video

Bronwen in the seal exhibit
Peacock Bass like George, my Dad's fish



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Some wild life...
Zoo art...
Bat made of twigs

These are actual signs posted in the zoo....The first one explains the difference between jaguar and leopard spots & the second, well...




The train ride home...



Thursday, March 10, 2011

Croque-Monsieur

These are hot ham and cheese sandwiches on grilled or toasted bread and are served as snacks in the cafes in Paris.  Every croque-monsieur that we’ve ordered in Paris was essentially a toasted ham and cheese sandwich topped with a quater inch of emmental cheese and broiled until the cheese caramelized on top, so delicious!! We’ve ordered them a few times in Belgium (Brussels & Gent) but they were missing the gooey goodness on top. 

Before we went to Paris this time I did a little research and several of the websites I visited mentioned that ice is almost never served with drinks but you may be lucky and get one cube. Sure enough we were just that lucky, too funny!


  

One thing that I really wanted to mention is that contrary to the popular reputation of Parisians, our experience this trip was that the people were incredibly warm and friendly.  From the waiters in the cafes and restaurants who doted on the kids and brought them coloring crayons and treats to our fellow metro passengers who offered to help us carry the double-stroller up the long sets of stairs in the metro stations, nothing but kindness the whole trip!