Category Archives: weekend

Life Abroad / weekend

This Weekend Was

June 21, 2016

img_9149This weekend we had some typical Amsterdam weather, meaning that it was gray, cold and rainy on Saturday, then sunny and wonderful on Sunday.

On Saturday KC and I steam cleaned the entire apartment. I somehow stumbled across this website that does peer-to-peer rentals here (to be honest, I didn’t know that was what it was when I found it, I actually just thought I was renting a steam cleaner from a store), so a guy who lives nearby stopped by on Saturday morning to drop off his steamer that we had rented for the day. The whole concept is kind of random but totally genius, I think.

We steam cleaned the couch and all of the floors (and OMG, you should have seen the amount of dirt that came off these floors!) KC did most of the steaming, while I vacuumed and cleaned every surface in the apartment. This place was supposedly “professionally cleaned” before we moved in, but yeah…. not so much. I don’t know what “professional” cleaned this place, but it wasn’t up to my OCD standards, that’s for sure. (The first thing I did when we moved in was wash every single dish in the kitchen here.)

After Prim’s nap and our marathon cleaning session, we headed out to Albert Cuypmarkt. It was kind of crazy because it was Saturday, but we picked up some peonies for the apartment (they’re so cheap here. So. Cheap.) We headed over to Par Hasard to try their “famous fries,” but I can’t honestly say they were any better than our go-to cheapie Chipsy King fries here.

After fries we wandered around in the rain (P was snug as a bug in the Cameleon with the rain cover — such a local!) and picked up a few groceries. That evening we had some friends over and stayed up way too late chatting and drinking.

img_9147On Sunday Prim woke up super early (because kids always know when you’ve been up too late!) so we hung out for a bit and then all took a nap a few hours later. After family nap time we headed over to Haarlem and wandered around, which was so fun. We hit up IKEA afterward, because we apparently can’t go one weekend without needing something from that place.

The best news is our apartment is so close to finished now! Our main floor is done and we just have a few more things to deal with upstairs in the bedroom and bathroom (water pressure in the shower is an ongoing battle here, and I’m not giving up without a fight!)

A few photos of the main floor are coming up later this week — stay tuned!

Life Abroad / weekend

This Weekend Was

June 15, 2016

img_9035This weekend we moved! After almost 9 months without our own place, we are finally settled for a bit. It feels so nice to have our own space again!

We spent the weekend bringing stuff from the hotel over to the new apartment, building IKEA furniture, picking up more IKEA furniture, building IKEA furniture… img_9033To be honest, KC built most of the furniture while I attempted to keep P away from the millions of tiny pieces. I did manage to put together our kitchen cart though, complete with tiny helper in my lap. (Right before these photos were taken, P was hanging all over me and I was asking KC to come and take her somewhere away from the chaos. Right as he walked over to grab her, she climbed into my lap and of course I couldn’t hand her over then! Such is motherhood.) img_9034img_9032The best news is that our stuff from the states was delivered on Monday, and we are almost fully moved-in and organized now. I’m hoping that we will be totally done by the end of this weekend, including cleaning. (Because this “semi-furnished” apartment needs a steam clean like woah.) img_9036-1Once the apartment is together and organized (and clean!) I’ll post a tour so you can see our new place. And get excited, because there’s not one but TWO sets of terrifyingly steep stairs. So Dutch!

Life Abroad / weekend

This Weekend Was

June 7, 2016

img_8929This weekend was a good one. KC’s mom was still in town, so KC and I were able to scoot out while P napped on Saturday and hit up IKEA for some stuff for the new apartment. We found pretty much everything we were looking for, and even more impressive — managed to fit it all into the back of KC’s new European car (his work gives him a car here — he’s so fancy.)

All of our newly acquired furniture is now residing in the entry hall of our hotel/apartment, staring at me like, “This is going to be so many hours of your life that you’ll never get back.” Those damn allen wrenches and instructions without words! The good news is that I’m going to feel so smart and accomplished after spending 3+ hours putting together a kitchen cart.

My brain hurts just thinking about it.

We are very much looking forward to our move in date next Monday. I can’t wait to fill you guys in on the details of our place and post a tour (y’know, once I’ve actually unpacked and organized. Which, with a toddler, should be like in… February? Of 2018?)

On Sunday the weather could not be beat. It was sunny and in the high 70’s — bliss. We ventured out to the center and walked through the flower market, which was so fun. There’s tons of fresh flowers to buy (and so cheap! Literally it was €3 for a bunch of 50 tulips. FIFTY TULIPS FOR THREE EURO.)

img_8928We wandered up a little ways to a cafe and had a drink and some snacks, including “bitterballen,” which sound totally gross but are actually weirdly delicious. Prim behaved marvelously which was such a treat, and the four of us got to just sit and watch the world go by for a bit. It was definitely one of those moments where all I could think was, “It doesn’t get any better than this.”

I assumed we would head home after the cafe, not wanting to push our luck with Prim, but she was doing so well that we decided to wander through the Jordaan a bit since the weather was so nice. img_8916KC gave P a little break from the stroller while we walked and wandered through the shops. She pointed out every dog she saw from up there, and when confronted with real-live horses drawing a carriage she just about lost her mind.

I have to admit that one is a tough age (so many opinions! so many feelings! so few communication skills!) but watching her take in the world around her and know that she’s really processing it now is really just the best.

img_8930We ended up staying out until past P’s dinnertime, and she held up just fine (even when our train was delayed and I was sure that the meltdown was imminent.) I don’t think we could have asked for a better day.

Now we just have to get through the rest of this week and then into the new place! Here’s hoping that everything goes smoothly and our move is decidedly uneventful. (insert those “goal hands” emoji here, haha!)


This Weekend Was

April 18, 2016

img_8114This weekend was the long-awaited lull after the craziness of the past two weeks. In the last two weeks I gave notice at my job, found out that the movers were coming to pack and ship all of our stuff to the Netherlands with five days notice (yayyyy…), got a terrible cold that hung on for dear life, almost got a speeding ticket, got a fix-it ticket instead, and celebrated my birthday.

All of this + my chronic sleep-deprivation amounted to my brain being stressed out beyond belief.

Now that our stuff has been packed and is on some ship sailing to the Netherlands, there’s a lot less to worry about. And I’m sure that tying up work over the next couple of weeks will be stressful, but at least I won’t be fighting a cold while attempting to organize and decide on everything we need to have in the Netherlands for the next two years of our life, while simultaneously ensuring that it will all somehow fit into ten square meters. img_8112Poor P seems to have gotten my cold, which made this weekend a little less than ideal, but luckily she was still in pretty good spirits, for the most part. img_8113And what about P’s summery outfit that I just couldn’t resist, even though it’s totally impractical for Amsterdam? Too cute for words! I can’t get enough of those cute long legs of hers.

I hope your weekend was full of sleeping in, delicious meals, and plenty of TV binge-watching.

{PS: P’s bloomers + swing top are both from BabyGap}


This Weekend Was

March 1, 2016

img_7504This weekend we spent some time down at my parents’ house in San Jose. On Saturday we headed to Vasona park with my mom, sister Alexis and her family to see the ducks and enjoy the nice weather. Apparently you can’t feed the ducks anymore (when we were kids you could show up with a loaf of Wonder bread and watch the ducks gobble up the pieces), but it was still fun to watch the birds circle around in the water and quack noisily.

img_7508img_7500While we were at the park we headed over to Oak Meadow to ride the train with the kiddos. Unfortunately we managed to miss the last ride by a matter of minutes, but luckily the carousel was still running. My mom bought us all tickets and we loaded up the kiddos onto horses side by side. Prim wasn’t super excited about the ride, but she did just sit quietly taking it all in which was pretty interesting since it was really loud and kind of overwhelming, which for most little kids is a recipe for tears, usually.

img_7530img_7529We headed back home that night after Prim had dinner and vegged out on the couch.

On Sunday we ambitiously decided to go to brunch with Prim. We haven’t been out for brunch with her since she was maybe 2 or 3 months old and would generally fall asleep when we were out, so I knew we were kind of taking a gamble going out with her during waking hours. Plus she’s teething right now (does it ever end??) and was not in the best spirits anyway.

We ended up going anyway, and managed to make it through our meal (though we both took turns taking Prim outside to walk her around while waiting for our food to arrive). It certainly could have been worse, but it wasn’t exactly the fun and relaxing brunch I was envisioning.

After brunch we headed to a local park so Prim could use the baby swings again.

img_7521And yes, she did keep getting called “he” and “him” while we were out because of her outfit, but I thought it was cute and the whole “baby gender confusion” thing really seems to bother other people a lot more than it bothers me.

After all that hard work it was time for naps all around (this is KC ignoring the terrible chick flick I was watching while Prim napped, and Penny just finds any opportunity to cuddle, of course.)img_7527All in all it was a great way to spend the weekend.