Monday on earth – bottled water

I confess: I love bottled water. Actually one kind in particular. I drink it since I was a kid and I never learned to appreciate tap water. But now, with a family of three, realizing how much it is costing me, and seeing the enormous amount of plastic bottles in our recycling bin… it didn’t feel comfortable anymore. And when last week I used it to make grenadine, well… I couldn’t justify using that good tasting, expensive water to make something in which I couldn’t even taste the water anymore.

 

So in came the water filter. It’s a simple system: you put tap water in a recipient, it runs through the filter, and you’re done. Let me be honest: it isn’t necessary at all to filter tap water here. It’s just fine and perfectly healthy to drink. I just don’t like the taste. I hoped filtering it would make things better. Actually, it doesn’t. It still tastes horrible to me. Even worse than before. Buh.

 

But I’ll stick to it. Maybe I have to cool it. Maybe it’s a learning process. Maybe I’ll like it in the end. And if not, I’ll watch documentaries like Tapped. Sometimes, I need some reminders to jolt my conscience.

 

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Reflections on Sunday

  • I’m not a whiner and I know it will probably rain thousands of days for the next few years, but for now, I’ve had it with rain. Little Boy is completely going nuts inside and I can’t get him to play by himself for longer than thirty minutes. Even in my company, he doesn’t care. He wants to watch his favorite television show, or empty every possible cupboard or just go outside and play in the sandpit (which will probably be a mud pit by now). I would even let him, if it would only stop raining!

 

  • Being a consistent blogger seems to remain an issue. I have enough ideas for posts by now, I should just start writing and plan some things ahead. Tonight I don’t have to cook (yay!), so I could totally do that – but I’ve left my bin with clothes to iron alone for too long.

 

  • Normally I don’t do ironing. Really. I buy clothes that I can wear straight away after washing, and my husband’s shirts are his problem. Luckily he has a grandmother who really adores ironing, so most of our stuff is going there (and since she finds it easier to iron things when she washed them herself, she does most of are laundry too). Except for LB’s clothes, and they are still too small to need ironing. However… I like to wash his sheets too and for some reason I feel like I need to iron them (don’t ask me why…) and besides, I really need to learn it because, well, I’m just bad at it. So better start with small things (and not letting the bin become a mountain).

 

  • On the other hand: I vacuumed twice this week. With LB being awake (and helping and making a mess behind my back)! The vacuum cleaner broke though. I hope it’s just because it was too full and needs to be emptied (my husband does that and probably I could too, but I just don’t feel like it). If not… well, we’ll die in dog hair. Oh and I mopped the floors too! Not that you could see any evidence of it, even a few minutes after it happened, but I did!

 

  • I need to watch movies entirely, even if only to report about it. Most of the times, I quit halfway and go to bed. Read a little. Still the same book, by the way. I have some other library books laying around and one of my friends gifted me Train Dreams. Can’t wait.

 

  • I have read a lot of blogs and blog posts lately, a lot on Facebook too, but I really wanted to share this one, by Renee at Sapling House. Taking beautiful photographs (and sharing them) can sometimes take is away from what/who we’re having in front of our lenses. Her daughter reminded her beautifully to remember to actually spend time together instead of photographing their time together. It’s something I might be guilty of too (only LB is too young to tell me)…

 

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July Photo a Day – week one

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I’m having huge fun with the July Photo a Day challenge by Fat Mum Slim. It encourages me to get out my camera as often as possible and look with a different eye. Besides the daily prompts, I have a lot of pictures now that show details in my home or surroundings, and plenty of Little Boy of course. I thought it would be nice to share my journey with you…

 

1 – RED + WHITE - I’m in love with the fresh raspberries, straight from the garden. They taste better in the sun though. Today it has been raining and well… it’s just not the same!

2 – SOMETHING BEGINNING WITH K – my mother tongue has plenty of words beginning with k (like cherries or cuddle), but English is apparently way more difficult. So I went with the keys. I have all my keys together, so if I lose this bunch, I’ve lost a way to enter my home, to start my car, to open many doors at school, to arrive at my parents’ house without them being there… Maybe it’s because they’re attached to a hideous pink keychain, but I’ve never lost them *touches wood*

3 – MATCH – doggie matches LB’s football. Ironic. She hates doing anything energy-consuming. If she would be born a cat, her name would’ve been Garfield. A little lazy and very much attached to comfortable things. Like a lap. Or a playmat to snuggle on. Food however turns her into a sharp, smart and quick little being.

4 – STARS – Belgium got kicked out by Argentina. Let’s pick up our lives now.

5 – ON THE TABLE – I would’ve loved to show something food related here, but LB lately got into the habit of collecting a series of things, pick them up one by one to offer them to us. We have to line them up for them, or at least help him do it. It works with everything. Juice boxes, water bottles or farm animals alike. My cute little colonel.

6 – VIEW – Across the street there is some land that always gives me the feeling that I’m somewhere far away. It’s a pity that it’s for sale and when sold, they will probably build on it in no time.  So I enjoy the view whenever I can.

7 – FIRST – Litlle Boy got his first haircut! He was a bit sleepy and snotty and therefore very calm and still. The best possible circumstances – he did very well and I liked how the hairdresser explained me as much as she could.

 

Monday on Earth – lunch skins

Today I finally ordered something I had laid my eyes on for quite some time now: lunch skins. I first saw them with a colleague and I remember thinking: nice, but I don’t really need them. I’m not often taking bread to school, I prefer leftovers.
But then this morning when I was preparing the breakfast-on-the-go of my husband, I realized that the tin foil habit had sneaked in again. First we used plastic lunch boxes, but he often forgot them or he didn’t take them back because he couldn’t put them in his laptop bag. So I cut the cord, let him chose a nice design, and added one for me too. And a bigger one for when I do take lunch that’s not leftovers. And water bottles. And a lot more that I eventually cancelled because I was overdoing it. There are snack skins too! And lunch bags!

 

I ordered them from a local company: Kudzu, situated in the town where I was born. I think they are very sympathetic, as when you live in Bruges, they deliver your order by cargo tricycle! I don’t live in Bruges anymore, but still… And one percent of their profits go to a charity that supports our environment, you get to choose which one!

 

It felt really good to do this. I do care about our environment, but a lot of my behavior doesn’t reflect that and I know I should change it. My husband won’t be on the wagon, but he will take his lunch skin instead of tin foil, because it doesn’t make a difference and a lunch skin is easy to fold and put away. Baby steps.

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I might order again in September though… those snack skins seem worth it after all.

This post was inspired by a post I saw on mundane ecstasy: Do Good Monday for the planet. It’s actually a weekly series in which she tries to focus on doing something good. So far it included your body, animals and earth. I’m curious what’s next!

 

 

Reflections on Sunday

  • Participating in SITS Summer of Social Love has learned me a lot about Facebook and pages, but I feel like I’m losing connection to this blog along the way. That can’t really be the point of this, so I’ll have to figure out how to turn it around.

 

  • It would help if Little Boy left me some time doing my things, but alas. He’s a whirlwind and asks for attention all the time. I know some children who can play happily alone for about an hour straight. Mine is not one of them. Oh well, we make a lot of fun little trips together and he’s a happy kid, but my house is a mess. Two more weeks, then a trip to France with my family and then daycare is open again. I may sound like a bad mother, but he’ll love to go back and I’ll be happy to bring him three times a week. He loves having his playmates around and the whole place that’s adapted to his needs and wants.

 

  • I love how he talks and calls a koala a ‘lalala’. It makes me laugh every time, so today we went to the zoo and we visited the koalas. Joy all over!!

 

  • I’m reading again! This week I’ve finished The haunted house by John Boyne. I already read The Boy in the striped Pyjamas and loved it, but it was only after having finished this book that I discovered it was actually the same author. I liked this book, it’s a good, old-fashioned ghost story that reminded me of one of my favorite authors when I was a kid.  It’s very predictable, but still a page turner and the last lines… I didn’t see that coming!

 

  • I was hoping to find a good fantasy series to read this summer and decided to do a reread of something I read about thirteen years ago: the Shannara series by Terry Brooks. It was a disappointment and I didn’t even want to finish the first book. Bizarre, ’cause I didn’t recognize a thing and in my memory, I think I liked it the first time. I brought it back to the library and now I’m rather enjoying The Thief’s Gamble by Juliet E. McKenna.

 

  • In the Worldcup, Belgium has left the building. It was the first time in ages that we had a good team again that showed promising things. One would thing to gain back some control over television then, but no. There are other teams to be supported and games to be seen. Oh, and the Tour de France has started.

 

  • One of the beautiful blogs I discovered, is Embracing the Spectrum. It’s a mommy-blog, mainly about parenting children with autism. It’s beautifully written and I learn a lot from it, because setting boundaries and the struggles that come with it are recognizable for everyone who is somehow involved with kids, as a parent, teacher or any other way…

 

  • I already told you plenty of times my house is a mess. But yesterday I did some ironing. And this very moment I’m baking bread. Maybe there’s some hope for me.

 

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Pasta para P

Sometimes a rush and some basic ingredients create the most wonderful dishes. And one of them became the absolute favorite of my husband, hence the name. The secret ingredient? Lots of fresh dill, I’ve already tried it without and it honestly makes all the difference…

 

  • Cook pasta. I like to use rigatoni for this dish, but penne or any short, ribbed pasta would do.

 

  • In the meantime, cut up some spring onions, slice a bunch of ‘candy tomatoes‘ (it’s a kind of very sweet cherry tomato, but longer, like a teeny tiny version of roma tomatoes – it has to be really sweet) and toss them in a pan, pot, wok, whatever. Let them simmer and get warm.

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  • Add mascarpone, one big spoon will do for now. Season, but be careful with the salt…

 

  • cause you’ll add your cooked pasta, along with little slices of smoked salmon. Keep some of the salmon apart to sprinkle over it once done. Now it’s the art to make it come together, the pasta just coated, the salmon just a different color, and heaps of chopped dill. Make sure everything is warm, but don’t overdo it.

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  • Serve in bowls or big plates, sprinkle with the rest of the salmon and a bit of leftover dill.
  • Enjoy. Take seconds. Thirds. Fight over the last spoon.

 

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Super Powers

Thinking about superheroes, there’s always an image in my head of my younger brother studying for his exams. He put a boxer over his pants and wore a bathrobe over his clothes, the belt wrapped around his head, rambo-style. He got inspired by Quailman and he cracked us up every time.

 

Superheroes come with superpowers and if I could choose mine for the summer, it would be the ability to look at a pile of stuff (paperwork, magazines, toys, dog haired blankets…) to make it disappear. Well, it would be nice if it didn’t just disappear, but dragged itself to the right place or the bin.

 

And while I’m at it, it would be completely awesome if I could duplicate myself in case of emergency. Or semi-emergency. Or just in any case. Like when I’m trying to make soup while my toddler is clearly stating that he’s ready to eat now (that happens every hour, I have a very food-minded Little Boy). Or when I’m trying to comb my hair (oh I hate that job) while that same Little Boy is trashing his father’s bike or bathing in the dog’s water.

 

superpowers

 

But without a doubt, I’ll live through my summer anyway, only slightly missing those super powers, too busy taking in the moment, enjoying the days and closing my eyes here and there to catch up on some sleep while Little Boy takes a nap. My parents visited today and brought my grandmother along and it was great to see how they all connected with our son, knowing he’s loved to pieces.

 

And that (beware: cheesy line) is be the only super power we’ll ever need.