Thursday, February 27, 2014

February Points

  • Last days of February! It already feels like spring in Brussels (and a few days ago we had 12-13 degrees even) and when March comes it will be spring for real! I would have liked a bit more winter, at least a few days of snow, but otherwise I like living in a place with a bit milder climate than Stockholm.  And both the autumn and winter have been milder and sunnier and less rainy than normal Brussels weather, as I understand (and remember from my internship days here in 2002/2003).
  • Harald turned ONE this month!  Poor Harald didn't get much of a celebration on his birthday except for brief singing in the morning and a few presents at night, but Harald himself didn't really care :)  We celebrated his birthday again last weekend when farmor & farfar (Peter's parents) visited and will do the same when my mum and my aunt visit at the end of March. When Isolde turned 1 and also 2 we had big birthday parties to which we invited many friends with or without children, but here we don't know that many people yet, and our main set of friends here were both away around Harald's birthday (and afterwards the kids have had colds, and the time passed). So he will get his big party next year instead! 
  • Speaking of friends, we have invited friends, colleagues and acquaintances to a drink at our place next weekend.  We have asked each guest to bring with them another friend/family, as a way to get to know more people.  It is not mandatory of course but it would be fun to meet new people and it looks like most people liked our idea!

  • We have booked two sets of plane tickets to Sweden, first over Easter when we will be in Sweden 11-21 April, and then for a weekend in May, 22-25th, when my mum turns 60 (22nd). We are also going to book tickets for the summer soon - I think we will spend four weeks in Sweden, probably 7 July - 1 August, give or take a few days.
  • Peter has done EXTENSIVE research on cars but we have not made any definite decisions yet, and at the moment it looks like we will wait and see whether Peter would get a company car with his new job (which he will start looking for soon), as it seems like a rather common benefit in Belgium. And even if he doesn't, by then a few new models will have come out which may be worth waiting for.
  • Harald is now enrolled at the crèche that we visited and I wrote about earlier, and will start on 11 August. It seems very good and they actually seem to go outside even in the winter, which is not very common in this country. And guess what, our neighbour's little girl E. will start there in September (and her brother V. will go to Isolde's school but not in the same class)!
  • We are looking forward to having Peter's sister and family here for the first time in a few weeks' time.  Two weeks later my mum and aunt come, and two weeks after that we go to Sweden for Easter.  So a lot of family time coming up! Two friends are also coming again for work in March and will either stay the night with us or at least meet up for dinner, but one of them I might miss, as I may have to go to Sweden for work on that particular day.
  • Tomorrow I have the day off. Originally we planned to go somewhere for an overnight stay (around 2 hours away is France, Luxembourg and Germany and Netherlands is even closer), but now Peter also has the cold Isolde had last week and Harald has had this week, so we have decided just to do some sightseeing in Brussels tomorrow and just do a daytrip somewhere nearby (on hour's drive at the most) on Saturday. It is so nice with an extra day to the weekend, especially since I have been working a lot lately.
  • This weekend we also have some social activities to look forward to. We are invited to a colleague's carnival* lunch (she is Swedish and her sambo Portuguese and they have 2-year-old son) on Sunday, and after that we go directly to P & O's neighbours' coffee. As you know, they live in our building (and helped us found our flat) and now another family(Swedish-Welsh) they know are going to move in here too, and they have two other friends who live just around the corner.
  • Isolde has already celebrated carnival at school this week but like Halloween time she only wanted to wear her costume for a minute. For that reason we only got her a very simple costume - a leopard mask - and she also wore a tiger t-shirt we already had at home. When we arrived to school and she saw all her little friends in their costumes she wanted to put the mask on, but just as quickly she wanted to take it off and she got a bit upset and didn't really believe me or her teacher that she didn't have to wear it if she didn't want to. I don't know if she wore it later - at Halloween she actually did wear her sceleton costume later in the day, at least long enough for photos - but she wanted to bring it again the next day. But in general, even though she's starting to get into dress-up game, she doesn't see the purpose of it, except for playing. Like us parents I guess who like dressing up for a dinner or party, but are not particularly fond of costumes or fancy dress/masquerade.
  • I can't remember if I have mentioned it before, but since a couple of months back we are subscribing to the same "grocery bag"/"food bag" service we had in Sweden. It's the same recipes but here in Belgium it is called Smartmat instead of Middagsfrid. The produce is slightly better in Sweden but we're still really happy with it here, and since a few weeks back we do all vegetarian every other week.
  • Have a great Friday and weekend!

* Celebration of the start of Lent. The Swedish equivalent is Shrove Tuesday when we eat semlor, but that is a very modest celebration compared to carnival.


  1. Vilken rolig ide med en fest dar alla far ta med sig en van! En jatte bra ide om man vill lara kanna lite nya manniskor! Du far skriva har hur det gick sen :-).
    Ha en fin helg!

    1. Tror jag skrev i ett senare inlägg men det var i alla fall en succé och jag kan rekommendera konceptet! Nu har vi kanske mest gjort upp nya planer med de som vi bjöd in själva än sålänge men det är också för vi har haft så fullt upp på sistone och tiden bara sprungit iväg.

  2. I love reading your concise updates:) So much amazingly new things happening. I think its amazing to move the family from Sweden to Brussels. I'm been very much based in Kuala Lumpur. After reading all almost tempted to be adventurous:)

    1. I want to blog more often but I haven't had the time (or had any inspiration as a result) so then these updates are good. At least you travel quite a lot even if you haven't lived anywhere else. But it is never too late!