Monday, November 19, 2012


Believe it or not, I just finished an easy week by my standards...not working all day long every day on getting images processed for a new post.

Just bits-n-pieces of this, that, and the you'll soon see!

Promise not to laugh...but this past summer during the Olympics, our nearby Aldi grocery store brought in pallets of goodies from England, to celebrate the festivities.  One of the goodies I latched onto was Ginger Bier (= beer).

The 6-packs started out at €3.49.  "I can afford that," I said.
We're not beer drinkers, to be honest, but there's something about ginger, right?
And when Astrid said she liked it, I took her inch and ran it for a mile.
After a couple months, the price was reduced to €2 per 6-pack.
When it was then reduced to €1 per 6-pack, I bought the remaining 13 packs!
Thankfully the expiration date is next April because we drink only 4 bottles total/weekend.  HA!

So, speaking of ginger, which is gember in Dutch....

I really am a glutton for it!
I love the lemongrass & ginger oil I use for our Sunday-night homemade popcorn.
And when I saw it as a jam (extra jam!), I jumped for joy!
It doesn't take much to make me happy.  But you know that by now.

Backtrack now to Adrie Bezemer, the wood turner.  When we were at his shop 2 weeks ago, he told us about the exhibition where he would be this past nearby Nieuwpoort.

It so happens that Nieuwpoort is a tiny town we like to visit
twice a year or so for their spareribs.  Another small pleasure.
And see, it's even ready for the season.

Within a one-block area, we went to the exposition and afterwards ate our spareribs.
It was fun to see Adrie again doing his thing, which he does so well.
We feel like we have a new friend!

And, as luck would have it, we found a new friend...Jan Scheffe.
Making bronzes is just one of his hobbies!  He also paints.
We had fun getting to know him better as he explained the art of making a bronze.
Aren't we lucky?!?!?!
(Maybe we can talk him into making a website?!)

Now, to fill in some more bits...

 Did I ever mention that Astrid and I have a chess game going all the time...
...and all year 'round!
This is the chess set Donica and I bought in Barcelona years ago, with the Gaudí flavor. 

And lest I forget (which I did!), we always have a jigsaw puzzel going!
These are ones we've finished since the last time I mentioned it...all from Jan van Haasteren
(in no particular order)

At the Gym (In de Fitness)--1000 pcs.

Castle Conflict (De Middeleeuwen)--1000 pcs.

Christmas (Kerstmis)--1000 pcs.

Departure Hall (Vertrekhal)--1000 pcs.

The Golf Course (De Golfbaan)--1500 pcs.
In the Car Respraying Shop (In de Autospuiterij)--1000 pcs.

Some like it Hot--1000 pcs.

The Playground (De Speeltuin)--1000 pcs.

United Europe--750 pcs.

The Kitchen (De Keuken)--1000 pcs.

Dat was it!  That's it.  Just a whole bunch of this, that, and the other.  Bit's-n-pieces.

For all my American friends, HAPPY THANKSGIVING this week!  It's the one American holiday I miss more than all the others put together.  (sigh)  I'm at least thankful for all the memories....


  1. I am so glad that you did not mention the fact that I have NEVER beat you in chess in all those 3 years........ ONE day my victory will come (I hope...grin).
    Maybe the beer will loosen me up and play like some Russian Master.
    It was great to see Adrie and his wife Corrie, again. They make a great team and I can see they have fun doing what they do. Two amazing people.
    I am fascinated by the bronze sculpture of Jan. Absolute wonderful.
    I never get tired of the jigsaw puzzles, while we put them together, we always smile at the idiot scenes hidden in it.
    One thing I cannot solve, is to have a real Thanksgiving dinner for you. Maybe one day...
    A wonderful post again, of all our bits and pieces in our life, that makes it wonderful.
    Many happy memories to add.

    1. I couldn't have said it any better! I do believe you can beat me at chess. YOU need to believe it and then you will whallop me! And then I'll be the one crying my head off because I can't beat YOU! :)

      All our bits-n-pieces make up such a fabulous whole. I love our life together. Thank you!

  2. Your bits-n-pieces certainly covers a huge amount and range of things Ginnie :) I really am beginning to think that Dutch days have more hours in them than ours! Although I don't play chess I really like the unusual chess set you have, it looks very tactile.

    1. Sometimes I think we have fewer hours than everyone else, Anne, because they just FLY. Where do they fly off TO, I wonder. And yes, this is a very tactile chess set. You'd love it. :)

  3. The remaining 13! I love it. Make sure to stick to your 4 per week and you are set! ;P I always marvel at the charming cities around you- the architecture would beg me for different compositions and times of day! My family would never see me (ha ha) Tell me, what do you do with all the finished puzzles again?

    1. I'm afraid if I drank more than those 2 bottles (Sat. and Sun. nights) I would start gaining weight, Margaret. HA! Gotta pay attention to these things. :)

      You'd love Holland. Photo ops around every corner. Seriously. But then, we see everything with different eyes because we're not used to it, right?!

    2. OH, I forgot to mention that we will keep all the puzzles and take them with us wherever we move till we die. HA! They'll always be fun to re-do, over and over again over the years!

    3. You stay perfectly in shape as far as I can see... HOW can you eat all those pastries? The food you two eat always looks so good! :)

    4. HA! Well, we do have to watch what we eat, Margaret! I think we're so used to moderation that it "sits well" with us. We really have fun but not too much. HA!

  4. Ginnie, I wrote a comment and it doesn't seem to be here.

    1. I just checked my spam box and I didn't find it, Cuidado. RATS. I'm so sorry!!!

  5. I love this post! These puzzles amaze me! And to think that I had some of that yummy ginger beer! Yeah!!!

    1. Thank you, dear Robin. I had forgotten that you had some of the beer. I declare. You sure do get around, don't you. :D

  6. I could probably help you out with that beer ~ and the popcorn oil sounds interesting, too, with a side of spareribs! Fun photos, as always!

    1. HA! I would love to share the ginger beer with you and Larry, Susan. Wouldn't that be fun. Add the popcorn and the spareribs and we'd make a big party of it! :) Thanks for the idea.

  7. All your bits are lovely. I am enthralled with the chess pieces! The popcorn sounds yummy. Don and I like to keep candied ginger around for tummy settling.

    Happy Thanksgiving, and I hope you're enjoying Belgium. Love to you both.

    1. Do you and Don play chess, Ruth? I wonder who all plays chess in our family. Hmmm. I love the game. :)

      Candied ginger is great. I bought some at Trader Joe's that I really love. ANYTHING GINGER! Yes.

      We're just back from a great 2 days in Antwerp. Rainy or drizzly most of the day but we really made the best of it. And it's only 1 hour away! We've decided to go back at least once a year, if for nothing else for Astrid to get her fill of mussels! :)

  8. We don't play chess. :) In fact we don't play games any more, and we wonder why. We used to play Cribbage, Scrabble. I think we should start again over the holiday break ...

    1. Do you even do jigsaw puzzles, Ruth??? We always have one going and love it. Sometimes we even work on it together at the same time.

      The other day I saw the Dutch version of the game we played almost non-stop before I moved here: it starts with a C.... I immediately thought of you! :)

  9. You keep a chess game going and also jigsaw puzzles? My dear, you are lucky not to have a cat – mine jumps on everything. Even when I am reading in bed Cody jumps on my knees and pushes my book away so I can pet him – he is spoiled…

    1. HA! No cat disrupts our daily life, Vagabonde! :D Don't even get Astrid started on cats....!

  10. I'm quite sure Astrid could beat me at chess! I learned the game but have never played it with any real talent... no patience to learn the finer points and always easily distracted! I love all the bits and pieces... cannot believe you bought 13 six packs of beer! But the price was certainly right. :-)

    Part of the reason I haven't posted much to my blogs lately is that I cannot seem to find the time it takes to get a post together that suits me! I cannot begin to imagine how long it takes you to craft your posts with so many images to include in collages!

    1. I LOLed when I read your comment about Astrid beating you in chess. It bothers the heck out of her that she can't seem to beat me...but I tell her it's all in her head. I do NOT know strategy at all. Someone else could surely beat the pants off of me!

      But anyway, I have often said this blog (covering our life here in the Netherlands) is a full-time job for me. Really! I spend hours every day processing all my images to get them ready for my posts just once a week. It reminds me of Chinese cooking: the prep of all the ingredients takes forever...and then at the last minute you put everything together to make the "meal." I LOVE making the collages...very satisfying after all the processing of images is done. Then once the collages are done, the post is fast and easy-peasy. :)

      Thank you for always "knowing."