Month: June 2011

The countryside, the nightless night

Juhannus -Midsummer- is a celebration that dates back to the pre-Christian time in Finland. It is the celebration of light, the nightless night, of nature’s magic and ancient spells of love and fertility. The cities are left abandonned when everyone heads to the countryside to welcome the summer by a lake or the sea. Sauna, barbecue and unbelievable amounts of various alcoholic beverages are enjoyed in the mystic light of the Nordic sky and the midsummer bonfires.

My “medicine” cabinet

Since I’ve entered this new exiting decade in my life, I have to admit that I can see some fine lines appearing in the mirror and I’m noticing that I need more sleep than I did 10 years ago. Living in the city the busy life and pollution are hard on the skin. It’s time to see how to best take care of myself. Here are some tips and things that I believe in. Let’s see in another ten years if I was on the right track. Dehydration: Remember to drink a lot of water. Antioxidants: Green tea and White tea. Not to mention the million other health benefits of these! My new favorite is the Acai-berry, which I take as capsules, juice and externally in my daily moisturizer from Kiehl’s. Natural cosmetics: Since there is no clear regulation which types of cosmetics can be called “natural”, a product that is marketed as natural because it has some chamomile extract added to it can be full of chemical substances such as mineral oils, parabens, silicones, …

My 30th Birthday (part 2)

Still some more pictures from the birthday party. Thanks Karen for taking pictures with my camera. (my old pocket camera I mean 😉 ) All the food was served in various pots, bowls and plates that could be found in my ex-patriot kitchen. general hustle. Daddies and babies beautiful Sandra Dancing in the evening light

My 30th Birthday (part 1)

That’s right, I hit the Big 3-0. Luckily I had the most wonderful people around me to celebrate with. Since the weather seemed a bit unpredictable and we had tons of food, we decided to enjoy lunch inside and continue to the park afterwards if the weather allowed. (Thanks An for this first set of pictures, more will follow from my camera) My friends: You made my day perfect. I’ve spent 10% of my life here in Belgium now and met such wonderful people. Bisousss! As Jan put it: “A Happy Annemarianniversary! 30 is a turning point, everything is gonna be even more fabulous afterwards! And we will help you with that!” Thanks to Karina and Elinor for helping me with the cooking. …and for decorating the beautiful and delicious cake. Jan arrived and the paparazzi was ready. And since the sun had finally arrived, it was time to call it PikNik Elektronik! A walk through the forest. It was the first PikNik Elektronik of the season. Then a mysterious present arrived… And a Dream …

Food shopping

It has become almost a tradition for me to visit the market of Mandala Organic Growers at the Ateliers des Tanneurs on weekends. The market is open on Sundays from 10-15 and has a bio restaurant that offers brunch as well. Normally I go and buy all the vegetables, cheese, fruit, juice and bread that I need for the upcoming week. The fresh products arrive to the market directly from European producers and are sold at very reasonable prices.

The little green bag

I know I’ve already talked about this flea market before, but since we visited it on a sunny Sunday afternoon and had a great time browsing through this adorably unorganized square, I wanted to share a glimpse of that atmosphere with you. (And yes, they still try to rip you off on Sundays, so bring your best bargaining phrases with you.)

Sometimes out of the blue arrives a sweet evening.

Saturday afternoon the temperature climbed up to 27c and quiet dinner plans with a friend turned into a true barbecue feast, where no food or drinks were spared! Sometimes just out of the blue arrives a perfect evening. I got a bit lost on my way and got a chance to admire some beautiful roses in the neighborhood. The afternoon started with home made Mojitos. And continued with grilled shrimp, lamb, chicken, sausages and some tofu sausages for me. Here we are all together. We were eating until we could not eat anymore. And then we ate a little bit more. And cleaned our mess in an exemplary manner. Wine and sunset on the terrace. Then it was time to call it a night. Some of us continued it on the dance floor, others biked down to some glamorous party and the rest of us had a rendezvous with Mr. Sandman.

Vegetarian Fajitas

Vegetarian Fajitas are easy to prepare, tasty and perfect food to share with friends. But tonight I made some just for myself and ate while watching my favorite tv show. Cut one big onion, one red sweet pepper, a carrot and one red chili pepper in slices. Fry in a wok and add some dark soy mince, red kidney beans, tomato sauce, garlic, salt and pepper and let the whole thing cook for a while. Prepare some guacamole, green salad and Parmesan cheese. Warm the tortilla bread on a frying pan or in the oven before you spoon some filling onto each tortilla and roll up! You can try different variations: lentilles, tofu, different vegetables, hummus, yogurt sauce, sour cream, different types of cheese… You’ll find that most of the things work.

The Infinity Dress

I’ve had the idea of making an infinity dress for quite some time and a few days ago I finally made one. This dress is absolutely fabulous and can be worn in any occasion. You just need stretchy fabric, some mathematics and a bit of patience. The most challenging part is cutting the fabric. I also added a small paillette decoration which actually took more time to complete than the dress! And most importantly: How YOU can make one