I’m Back! I Think….

So it’s been a while. Going from blogging every day to not blogging for almost three weeks is a little odd. Then again, I’m at home so it’s just like it was before when I wasn’t blogging. I don’t have a desk (or room for one) in my room so I’m using the dining room table. I’ll eventually move down to the basement, but I’m kind of just in the middle of everything right now and I don’t think of blogging. I have a ton of pictures from when I got back, all the snow that started the day I got home and my room, but I can’t upload them (or charge my camera) because I can’t find my camera cord! That’s kind of bumming me out.

Once I get around to writing my remaining posts about London, and about the day I got back I won’t be writing on this blog anymore. But I have another started if anyone still wants to follow and check it out. I don’t know what I’ll be writing about, but lets hope it stays interesting!

                                                                                                                        

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What Day Is It Again?

Oh my. I’m still so tired. Of course I’ve been going since I got home without getting much of a chance to rest. We’ve had stuff to take care of and lots of running around to do. You can check out a few pictures from yesterday on my Facebook page, but things – of course – weren’t working right and stopped loading. Tomorrow Mom and I are going to Anna Mae’s for breakfast and then on to Listowel to get our hair cut. Just in time for dinner out tomorrow night!

It’s taking me a little longer than I thought to get used to the time change. It may be because Tuesday I was basically up for 24 hours. I got to see all three grandparents today, that was really cool. Also some other family members that was totally random and by chance. Gotta love those moments! Things are basically going to be busy until Tuesday. Not exactly ideal, but what can you do. I’ll be able to ‘chill’ for about a week before starting work. Although there’s a lot of work to be done in my room. I have a lot of purging to do. I left it in a bit of a mess last year and it’s a little overwhelming when I think of how long it will take to get it organized. That’s what happens when you go away and forget about stuff!

Alright. I’m going to bed. I’m a little loopy. Night!

                                                                                                                        

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Lost and Found

So I’ve got the pictures from Day 2 in London on my Facebook page. It’s way too late tonight to write the post for it though, so that will come tomorrow or Monday. Tonight we got caught up on episodes of How I Met Your Mother and The Event. And of course this afternoon was spent loading the pictures. I had to search for 3 of them, they were missing somewhere. Thankfully I found them. I was freaking out that some of my pictures got deleted. That’s been a fear I always have every time I load pictures from my camera to my computer.

Anyway, here’s the link for the album if anyone wants to check it out before the post.

                                                                                                                        

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Random is as random does.

Does that title even make sense?!

Bastien was home sick today. He’s had a fever all day and still has one now. His coughing sounds horrible, poor boy. For lunch I made him scrambled eggs (they go down easy), these potatoes things that are like tasty taters but not (he loves those), and veggie soup. He ate almost all of it! He actually ate more eggs than I thought he would. Do I have that saying right? Feed a fever, starve a cold? I don’t know. All I know is he didn’t eat tonight (minus one little piece of meat and once piece of spinach stuff pasta) and he only took a couple of sips of milk. He only napped for about an hour and a half today, not long enough. But of course he didn’t want to go to bed.

Sylvain was a jolly as ever, walking around like he owns the place now. He still has his moments when he falls, more so when he’s tired obviously, but he’s getting so much better! I sat with him in front of the fire for a while and sang while he clapped his hands or held mine. Smiling is always better than crying.

The heat was off today because they were fixing it. I think it was supposed to be off until tomorrow afternoon/evening, but I guess it’s back on. So that’s good. We do have space heaters in the bedrooms and bathroom and the fire in the library was going all day so it wasn’t so bad. Actually, I don’t think the heat in my room worked very well at all before so for me it wasn’t much of a difference! The space heaters you can only have on when you’re in the room and I actually had to turn mine off and didn’t even have it at full heat and I still got too warm.

So I’ve looked at the BBC Weather for London because I wanted to know if it’s going to rain this weekend or not. Last time I checked it wasn’t supposed to. Cloudy, with a bit of sun, and highs of 14-15, with lows of 9-11, but no rain. Would it be tempting fate to leave the rain jacket here and use my other one? I don’t have room in my backpack for the rain one to take ‘just in case’, but I don’t want to wear it if it’s not going to rain. Hmmm…maybe I do have room in my bag. We’ll see tomorrow when I finish packing.

Once this post is published today I get the weekend off! Not that I don’t love blogging, but it is nice when I don’t have to worry about it. I’m going to leave you all with a little treat. Some random photos I’ve taken around here. Enjoy!

These piggies have split national personality disorder. Or dual citizenship, I'll let you decide. 😉

Yeah for Canada! The pig I painted is the one on the right, Sylvain's pig. :P.

 

This is your proof that Sylvain is in fact walking solo. The crown was made by his babysitter for his birthday. Actually, when he first started walking (and sometimes still) I would always get the song 'Drunken Sailor' in my head. That's how he walked. 😉

Here's the B-man just chillin' out in his chair, reading a comic in front of the fire. I posed him for this picture, but not before seeing him already sitting like this. Apparently he's always sat like this with a book in hand.

                                                                                                                    

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Saint Nicolas

Yesterday we went to stand in line in a toy store to get a picture of the kids with Saint Nicolas and Father…I don’t know how to spell it. Saint Nicolas (not Santa Claus) brings gifts and goodies to good children and the other guy deals with the bad kids. Over the course of history things have become such that Saint Nicolas is white and Father doesn’t-like-bad-kids is black…hmmm.

I did in fact get a picture of me with them, but it’s really awkward. My hair is a complete mess, in a really odd messy bun a little too high on my head. I don’t like it. The whole point was so I could put it on here, but now I don’t want to. I might fiddle with it at a later date and add it in, we’ll see. Each kid that went got a box with a juice box, cookies, a pencil, and other cool stuff in it. Awesome huh?!

So I’m kind of all blogged out after yesterday’s post. Which is why today is so blah. But that’s what we did yesterday with the boys and Clémence.

                                                                                                                      

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Mardasson Hill American WWII Memorial in Bastogne.

Seeing as how tomorrow is Armistice/Remembrance Day/Veterans Day I wanted to visit a memorial this week. Clémence is coming tomorrow and spending the night, so with her and the boys we’ll have our hands full. Actually, it’s going to be one adult/kid since it’s a holiday both Greg and Adeline are home. I decided to go to Bastogne for a number of reasons. On Mardasson Hill just outside Bastogne is an American WWII Monument dedicated to the 76, 890 Americans who were killed, wounded, or marked missing in the Battle of Bulge in the Ardennes that took place from Dec. 16, 1944-end of January 1945. It was a memorial I hadn’t been to. And in Band of Brothers they fought in Bastogne, so I thought it would be neat to go there.

I couldn’t have asked for better weather. The past few days have been grey and threatening rain, but today was sunny. I think it got up to about 18° in the sun, but in the shade it was definitely crisp and cool. I found myself wishing I had brought my mitts this morning. When I was standing on the path leading to the monument reading the information there my hands were pretty chilly. The drive there and back was very enjoyable. The sun made all the crisp reds, oranges, and yellows of the leaves stand out. There wasn’t much traffic either so I was really able to take in the scenery and enjoy the ride.

Also on site is the Bastogne Historical Centre. Unfortunately is closed in March for 18 months so no museum today. When I got there I noticed a bus in the parking lot. While I was standing on the path leading to the monument, reading the info board, a group of what I think were students was on top of the monument. By the time I finished reading they had left and it was just me and one other guy. It’s sort of strange being at a big monument like that all by yourself. It was like that at Vimy as well. Just you and the silence, alone with your thoughts and the incredible view. This monument wasn’t as influential for me because I had never heard of it before coming here. Unlike Vimy, which I learned about in school. In fact, the only reason I knew about it was because it’s in my The Best of Belgium book.

The monument is in the shape of a 5 point star and has the name of all the states along the top – outside and in. Along the outside of the wide columns are lists of the army units that fought in the Battle of the Bulge. Along the inside of those pillars is carved the same thing written on the info board, explaining about the battle and why the monument is there. At least I think that’s what it says. I just glanced quickly at a few of them, but they looked familiar. Inside the start there is grass and some bushes that give it a really warm, welcoming feel. There is also a spiral staircase (I really don’t like spiral staircases) that takes you on top of the monument. The view was amazing. After a while fog started rolling in. It created an interesting effect in some of my pictures. Well, at least it’s interesting to me :P.

It’s a beautiful monument, very inviting with benches all around, nestled in trees and fields with grazing cows. And I really liked how all the states are listed. No names, but the states and army units. It didn’t stir within me the same sense of I don’t know what that I felt while at Vimy. I think it all comes down to the flag. I’m patriotic – not insanely so – but as the year comes to a close I find myself yearning more and more for home. I feel a sense of excitement and longing when I look at a Canadian flag. As close as the good ol’ US of A is to my home the star-spangled banner doesn’t make me feel the same way. I have friends and relatives in the States and I’ve enjoyed all my visits. Of all the cities I’ve been to with school or on family trips, I’d have to say Boston and Nashville are my favourite. I haven’t been to New York so I have no idea what I would think of that city.

All in all I’m really glad I went. It was a beautiful monument, a beautiful place – despite the construction – and a beautiful day. Now come take a look with me.

This star-shaped monument stands as a reminder of the 76, 890 Americans killed, wounded, or marked missing from the Battle of the Bulge.

Inside the monument.

A view from atop the star.

Stars and stripes forever.

 

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Bah, who needs pictures anyway?

Ugh. I really don’t want to complain about my computer again because I’m really fortunate to have one that sort of works, but I spent 4 hours trying to upload photos to Facebook today. And I still have 26 that I want to add to the album – “Lazy” Sunday in Bruges and Ypres – you can check it out on my FB page (see side bar), but I might break something if I keep trying. Something like my glasses which I keep wanting to throw around and I really need those. You see, they just get in the way. I can’t rub my face with them on and if I writhe around in a fit I risk them falling off and crashing to the floor. Have I mentioned I hate glasses? I want laser eye surgery…

I really was planning on writing about Bruges today. I thought it would be fitting because it’s been a week now since we went. But alas, after sitting here all afternoon trying to deal with photos (God forbid I try to do more than 1 thing at a time when my computer’s throwing a fit), then Skyping with my Mom to talk Thanksgiving stuff, and after now trying to add the link to the existing album I really don’t have the patience. Boo. I’m just making excuses. You see, I feel like I’ve built up the potential greatness of the post by delaying it and I’m afraid it just won’t live up to it. Then again, I think the pictures will do it justice – if I can ever get them up :P.

So I will leave you with a couple of pictures (mine this time) of more than just chocolate. Maybe balance it out with some fries and medieval architecture.

Freddy and a view of the Markt in Bruges (Brugge)

 

So this is how lace is made!

 

Who knew there were so many different kinds of potatoes? I sure didn't.

                                                                                                                      

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This post isn’t about chocolate…but the pictures are ;).

So my computer is being sluggish. It literally took me an hour to read one blog post. I have to go through and clear some things out I think, or something. It has its moments. Tonight is one of them and combined with my lack of interest in writing a blog post tonight I’m going to keep it short. I know, I know, I’m totally dropping the ball on my two recent ‘good’ adventures, but even I get the urge to not blog sometimes.

So instead I will leave you with two pictures from chocolate shops in Bruges. Both are Lucie’s, we can thank her for these because I don’t think I got a picture of them myself. The one is mouth-watering, the other hilarious. I’ll leave it to you to decide which one is which. Some of you – I’m sure – will have different opinions ;).

Yummm ^_^

 

The sign said for Father or Friend. I can imagine some of you would appreciate one of these as a gift. 😉

                                                                                                                      

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And if you look to your left you’ll see….hey, where’d it go?

This morning it was back to routine. Except instead of cereal for breakfast we had cake again. Lucie and I made sure we were ready to go, and after dropping Sylvain off we made our way to Waterloo. I told her she would be able to get pictures of the Butte de Lion (the big hill with the lion statue) from the road as we drove up. Normally this is true. Today was so foggy that you couldn’t see it until we were practically right underneath it. So she didn’t really get great pictures of it. Our plan was to just go and take a look-see, not to climb up or anything. This was just as well because we wouldn’t have been able to see anything once we got to the top anyway.

Then it was on to the 2nd part of our agenda; pictures with a Waterloo town sign. These were highly successful. Lucie even managed to get one on her camera of both of us. Well, all three of us, Freddy was there too of course. This was in fact his first time to Waterloo. You gotta love timers on cameras. The problem was finding a stable spot on the car and then her getting back  to the sign in time. We had fun, but I bet the drivers coming into town wondered what the heck we were doing/why we were taking pictures with the sign. Or maybe they’re used to odd tourists….

Then we headed to a grocery store where we picked up some chocolate for Lucie’s friends and family that would survive being mailed home. We also mailed her postcards from the store. We couldn’t mail the chocolate because they didn’t have any boxes. The guy who showed us where the post are was, was nice. He asked if he could help us and I tried to explain, but temporarily forgot the word for stamps, but we figured it out. I explained we were Canadian and he said ‘oh Canadians are nice people’. ^_^ Yes, yes we are. Although you really can’t be universal like that. Actually, that makes me think of a Weird Al song – Canadian Idiot – where some of the lines are: ‘break their nose and they’ll just say sorry. Tell me what kind of freaks are that polite? Gotta mean they’re all up to something. Quick, before they see it coming. Time for a preemptive strike *cue missile drop noise here*. I think that song is hilarious. I laugh every time at the stereotypes he lays out. In case you don’t know or didn’t guess from the title, it’s to the tune of Green Day’s ‘American Idiot’.

After that it was home, but not before picking up some bread for lunch. After lunch we just did our own thing. Lucie had some more bookings to make with trains and hostels and things so she did that while I started doing blog catch up. I also got a text today saying that class was cancelled because Madame Colette is sick.

Tomorrow we’re going to get up pretty early to make sure we’re all ready. Then I’ll go about my usual routine before stopping at the bakery (it was closed today, but I really want to take Lucie), dropping Sylvain off, and then heading to France! I’m already so tired – maybe it’s all the driving in the last two days? – so I’m pretty sure Wednesday I’m going to go right back to bed after seeing everybody off. I’m definitely going to be putting on my glasses to drive home tomorrow night. My eyes are still burning from wearing my contacts all day yesterday :(.

Even though I’m going to be so tired from doing about 6.5 hours (round trip with trip from Memorial to nearby town with train station) of driving, I’m so excited! We don’t actually have a lot planned and what is planned shouldn’t even take up half of our allotted time. Maybe when we’re there we’ll find something else we want to do, who knows.

A foggy day in *Waterloo* town! Had me low (not really), had me down (not at all!). 😀

                                                                                                                    

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© 2010-2011 hollyjb

Summer decided it wants to hang on after all…

So today when I was outside with Bastien (I had to go out – it’s such a beautiful day!) I had a bit of a nasty surprise. I know Greg said the other night that he ran full on (in the face) into a big spider web. Ugh >_<. I started to take a stroll around the walk way when I stopped for some reason. Then I looked closer and blocking my path was a nice, big spider web, with a generously sized spider perched atop. Oh boy. That was close. I grabbed a stick and broke it apart. I kept said stick with me to wave in front of my face if there were more. I also  stopped to gape at so many webs in bushes. These spiders are huge! Not tarantula huge, but not daddy-long-legs small. I’m totally cool with crushing spiders. I don’t like them, but I’m not afraid of the little ones. The little, little one’s I’ll even crush with my hand if there’s no tissue near by. I did that once in elementary school. We were changing for gym in the washroom and a tiny spider was crawling across the wall. Some of the girls started freaking out and I just went smack! And it was dead. The bigish ones with the bodies you know are going to be squishy, mushy, and gross I will attack with a rock or shoe…if I need to. These I just let be because they weren’t actually bother me/in the house and I’m not always unnecessarily cruel.

Greg, Adeline and the boys have a wedding today. You couldn’t have asked for more beautiful weather! It’s warm, but not too hot. The sun is shining, but it’s not hot enough to bake you in your skin. There’s a slight breeze. If you were to be outside for a long time – especially if you aren’t actually doing anything – you might want long sleeves or a very light jacket/cardigan, but otherwise it’s really, really nice.

I also have a start on The Great Room Make-Over Project. Well, it’s not really a make-over – but it sort of looks like one! I’m not planning on changing any furniture around, but you can see all the floor you should be able to see now. Things are tidied. I have to work on dusting and vacuuming, but I’ll leave that for another day. A friend of mine posted this as her Facebook status the other day and even though I’m not a parent I liked it. In some ways it’s just a really good excuse for when you let your house go – Dirty dishes prove I feed my children, full bins prove I change my baby’s diapers, messy floors prove that I let my kids play and have fun, piles of clothes prove I keep my children in clean clothes, a messy bathroom proves that I bathe my kids! So next time you walk into my house and see a mess, think twice before you judge!!! Keep this going if you’re a parent. I don’t know if she originated this or what, but I thought it was great. Maybe that’s just because on most days I’m extraordinarily lazy and any excuse not to have to clean/tidy is a good one by me! Now at least my room doesn’t look like a marauding war party trampled through it on their way to somewhere after a satisfying win.

So other than that and taking an über long time to load a mere 31 pictures to Facebook – it only worked if I used the basic uploader = 5 pics at a time… – that’s what I did today. I also had some music playing and I danced around a little bit.

Click for pics from yesterday’s post!

                                                                                                                

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© 2010-2011 hollyjb

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