Thursday, March 27, 2008

Tower Eiffel


They are planning to add an extension to the top of the tower. These photos are example of what it might look like. I don't know about you but I'm not sure I like it! I can't imagine what the French think about it this idea, they hate the tower.


It will happen sometime in 2009, and you can bet I'm making a day trip there to check it out for myself.

Here is the official scoop:

Serero Architects have won the open competition to redesign any of the Eiffel Tower’s public reception and access areas as a celebration of the 120th birthday of Gustave Eiffel’s original creation.
Serero’s project plans to extend the top floor plate of the tower by attaching a high performance carbon Kevlar structure on it that will expand the usable floor area from 280 m2 to 580m2. The extension aims to “increase the quality of the access of the public as well as experiencing the fantastic 360 degrees sight of Paris.”
The structure will be temporarily bolted without any modification of the existing structure.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Minnesota?


This is what I woke up to today!!! I had no idea if I was in Minnesota or Brussels.

I can not type what I said when I looked outside but use your imagination. The snow was up to Foxy's belly and she was not happy either.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Joyeuses Paques (Happy Easter)

We had a wonderful brunch on Saturday with the Kelly's and Gillette's. (with snow falling during it) We had a unexpected guest with a rose-ringed parakeet landing and eating in our backyard during brunch. (sorry i don't think i can load photos due to the video)

Joe left for the states on Sunday and it snowed all night. For today (monday) Foxy and I took a long walk in the cold only to find out that the stores are closed on Easter Monday. Then afternoon it started snowing and hasn't quit.

Enjoy the video taken monday afternoon- it might take some time buffering but it will play I tested it.

video

Friday, March 21, 2008

Spring?


It has snowed, rained and hailed all day today! I do have to admit I like it right now. The flakes falling right now are like big fluffy cotton balls falling down from the sky and blanketing the ground.

Here is a blurb from the English website in Brussels about the Easter weekend.

Meteorologists are warning that the coming Easter weekend will be the coldest since 1975. Freezing overnight temperatures and possible high winds at the coast Saturday will combine to keep temperatures at record lows. It is the first time since 1913 that Easter day falls as early as March 23. (Source:xpats.com)

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Tres Chick!


Coloured chicks are seen in a bazar in the city of Isfahan, 400 kms south of Tehran on March 18, 2008 few days before the Persian new year, or Noruz, which starts on March 21.


I saw this photo on CNN as a photo of the day...just thought they were so cute I had to share. Do they have a coloring kit like for eggs to do this???

Hoppy Spring!!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Belgium & Politics


this just in...


Belgium's political parties announced Tuesday they had reached a deal to form a new national government, ending a nine-month political stalemate that had threatened to split the country along linguistic lines.


Now if someone can only do something about the falling dollar.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Time Flies...


July 21st will mark our second year in Brussels. We are at the point where we run into people we know at the stores, on the bus, on the street and for Foxy around the etangs d’ixelles. (The ponds by our house) I am so lucky I have not met anyone here that has said “I don’t need anymore friends I have enough” like I had happen to me in Minneapolis. I just can’t imagine ever having too many friends, and feel very fortunate to have as many as I do all over the U.S. and now the world.

Unfortunately we are also at the point where our friends we have met here in Brussels are returning back to the USA.

On Saturday night we had an “au revoir” dinner for Kate & Jim. They are heading back to the good old U S of A in the beginning of April and will be missed. (Kate is across from me in the photo and Jim is across from Joe. Anne is next to me and Kevin is across from her)

Bon Voyage mes amies!!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Saturday

Last Saturday morning Foxy and I walked to the market down the street to get some flowers. Our house smells so good right now; I wish you could smell it through the computer. I got a bargain 50 flowers for 10 euros (or $15.00). Then we did the normal weekly trip to the grocery store. I will write and tell you about that some other rainy day. After they food was put away we were off to do some shopping.

My original plan was to go to Maastricht, Holland for The European Fine Art Fair or TEFAF. I saw an article on it in the March issue of Town & Country. They have 220 dealers all in one place. However I showed the article to Joe and he was stuck on the phrase “Museum-quality shopping”. Followed by the comment that "we were going to look and not buy". So we loaded up Foxy and went regular people shopping. We drove all over the Flanders region of Belgium looking at stores for treasures. Yes I know the fun is in the adventurer but when you find that certain something special, it is worth it.

Here are two of our really good finds. The first one is a painting by Emile Lammers (1914-1990) from what I can find out she is a famous Belgian painter from the Flemish region. Not only do I love the painting, love the metal plaque on the frame but I think it looks like a painting mom would do (or has done).




The next one is by E Patris (1909-1981) called l’accident. He also was a Belgian artist from the town of Namur. I can’t find too many painting that he did but I did see a lot of sculptures on the internet.

We stopped in a town called Asse, and had dinner then we saw almost across the street a flock of fluffy sheep with one black one. So we pulled off the road to watch them and show Foxy. Then we noticed that there were two baby lambs that could hardly walk and then they decided it was dinner time too and went to mom. I wish I had my camera with to show you how cute they were.

Friday, March 7, 2008

blogs

Since started my blog I have a small collection of blogs that I check out regularly. I just found this one and want to share it with you... http://www.parisdailyphoto.com/

one of my favorite comments from his blog - the weather is a good topic.

"We're currently experiencing one of the hottest winter since 1950 (1,1 °c above the average temperature since the beginning of winter). It's not only warm, but also very sunny: the sun shone almost 300 hours between December and February (against 187 hours over the same period on average between 1991 and 2000). Consequently caf├ęs and restaurants have reopened their terraces and Parisians are already having lunch outside (I did last Saturday!) ! It's a moment I love - and I'm sure you do too"

I think that might be the same weekend Joe, Foxy and I had lunch outside in Brussels.

French


My French classes started up again. I was a little nervous going to class due to the fact I haven’t studied in a while and have been talking a lot with people where English is their mother language.

My new class is going to be hard my professor is really good and does not let me mispronounce anything…huge problem for me. The hardest word for me to say is The United States (des Etats-Unis) pronounced (day zay-tah-zoo-nee). If anyone has a hint on how to say that in French please let me know. Back to my professor…she writes French books and we are now using one of hers. I liked using my old book, plus my friends in higher levels could help me with test and finals. But she is really good and I will learn a lot from her, not promising I will pass the first time though.

I have flip-flopped my days of the weeks and hours so much the past years that I’m now taking classes on Tuesday and Thursday from 8:45 – 11:45. This meant I might not have any one I knew in my class, but I have 2 girls that I know and like. Rosa from Peru and Pery from the country we invaded a couple years ago. Yes she moved to Belgium 6 years ago, she first learned Flemish and now is working on her French and English. Since first meeting her in September her English has greatly improved. I admire so many of the people in my classes; they can speak so many different languages. This one girl last semester spoke 6 fluently. The average language is 3 that my class mates speak. Amazing!

The people in my class now don’t speak that much English which is good it forces me to try and talk to them in French but when two beginners are communicating we don’t say much but Ca Va. The girl that sits next to me is very patience with my French – she doesn’t know any English and is from the other county that starts with an I and ends with an N. Yup that is right…I’m sitting right in the middle of Iraq and Iran. How crazy is that. My classes have always been like a mini united nations. I have met someone from almost every county in the world, some nice and some not so nice.


I have a test on Tuesday that I need to get ready for…Au revoir!
photo from December 2007