Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Doesn't this picture look like one of those standard desktop wallpaper backgrounds? It's not, M took it with his phone. The Dolomites are beautiful...

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


A few skiing statistics.... (sorry, no photos yet. We only took 8 on the digital camera and they didn't turn out very well. We'll have to check some of the other's photos and have them send them to us).Thanks to the amazing people at who keep track of everything you do with your skipass...
- I skied 179 km in 8 days. That's 111 miles for all you Americans.
- I took 97 skilifts.
- I covered a total of 29369 m of height difference. That would be 32118 yards.
- I lost my clip-on sunglasses twice while getting in a chairlift, but got them back both times.
- I gained 2 kg, or 4.4 lbs. But muscle is heavier than fat, right?

So much for the statistics. We had an awesome week. Both the busrides went fantastic, the skiing was great (good snow and lots of sunshine, which did turn the snow rather soft in the afternoons). I didn't fall too many times and I was able to ski until about 13:30 every day, after which I would eat lunch and slowly ski back to the hotel. Then I'd take a shower and a good long nap. I felt really good and people at work told me yesterday that I look a lot better than two weeks ago. But that's probably the tan, too.We were with a group of 21 people, so we had lots of fun at dinner and playing games at nights.That's the short version. I really need to iron and do some school stuff now. But I didn't want to keep you guys waiting for too long...

Friday, February 16, 2007

Bye bye

I'm gone skiing. I'll be back in a week or so!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Work, study and vacation

You may have noticed that my blogging frequency has gone down. That's a good sign: it means that I am spending more time on work and study.

I went back to teaching Dutch to a group of eigth graders of the lowest level (vmbo). It definitely costs a lot of energy, because it's a really noisy group. But they're nice kids and we'll get used to each other quickly I'm sure.Next week we have our spring break and M and I are going skiing in the Italian Dolomites (Southern part of the Alps), together with lots of family members. We're really looking forward to that! I'm sure that some outdoor exercise, combined with amazing Italian food will do me good. I hope to look better than I did last year. But if it snows like it did last year, I'll look just like this again! :)
I've also picked up my studying again. I'm working on my thesis. The main question I'm trying to answer is: "What extra skills does a music teacher in vmbo need, as opposed to a music teacher in havo/vwo?". (click here for an explanation of vmbo/havo/vwo) The reason for that is that I seem to be the only person who enjoys to work with the lowest level kids. Most graduated music teachers start in job like that, but move up to higher levels as soon as they get the chance. I think that is because they weren't properly prepared in college. That's why I will be teaching a group of third year college students, as a part of the practical part of my thesis. And the dean has so much faith in me that the students that take my class will actually be awarded credits, how cool is that?

All in all, I'm back to a busy life. Although I must say that the study discipline I used to have, isn't really back yet. Take now, for instance. I went to the computer to start typing on my thesis (I already have 2 pages) and now I'm blogging again...

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Foo Yong Hai again

One of the results of having four chickens, is that I have three eggs a day. I assume the ladies take turns in taking a day off and that's fine by me. They're small eggs, but, nevetheless, very edable. We eat lots of quiches, fried eggs and omelettes now (which reminds me that I should start giving eggs away, if I don't want our cholestorol levels to run through the roof). In my quest for the ultimate foo yong hai recipe, I had already decided that Conimex Foo Yong Hai from the box isn't anywhere close to what I have in mind. That's why I did a little searching on the internet.

I checked out my favorite supermarket's web site. It's in Dutch, sorry. Part of their site is a recipe search. You can search all the recipes that they have posted in their monthly magazine over the past ten years or so, but you can also make your own personal recipe book, and browse through other people's recipe books. In Suzanne Heijligers' personal recipe book I found this recipe for Foo Yong Hai. I tried it and it was very close to my friend Sheila's recipe. I'll keep searching though, because I'm not satisfied yet. I know I used the wrong ingredients (I didn't have the vegetables Sheila usually uses so I substituted them) so I'll have to try again. This is getting exciting! I've never really tried to exactly copy a dish I've eaten somewhere else before. Usually I just ask for recipes or make something that kind of seems like it but isn't exactly.

Anyway, here's what I fixed today. We had strawberry cobbler for desert, and that tasted good too!
Suzanne Heijliger's Foo Yong Hai
- 4 eggs
- about 100 gr. of chopped leek, carrot, onion
- 250 ml (a little over a cup) tomato ketchup
- little bit of vinegar
- tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp sweet soy sauce (ketjap manis)
- 1 clove of garlic, pressed

Whip eggs, mix with chopped vegetables. Add pepper and salt to taste. Melt a little butter (I used vegetable oil) in a frying pan, and spoon in 1/4th of the egg/veggie mix. Keep warm in oven dish (I put a little tea light under it) and bake the other omelettes.Meanwhile, heat ketchup in pan. Add vinegar, sugar, soy sauce and garlic. Stir well, but make sure it doesn't boil. Pour the sauce over the omelettes. Serve with rice.

I used deep fried Asian stir fry vegetable mix, and I had chicken out of the freezer so I put that in as well. Next time I'm going to leave the vinegar out because we thought the sauce was a little too sour.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

A really cool egg

Look what I just found in the hen house! It must be the smallest egg ever...

Back to work

Slowly but surely I'm going back to work. I went to my college yesterday (first time in ten weeks, and of course the trains had a delay...) and presented the book that I had read for my literature class. It went fine, and I passed the class, yay! It took a lot of energy but that was totally ok.
Today I had a household day. I ironed and cleaned like as if my life depended on it, while watching my new box set of Sissi dvd's. LOVE those movies! Then I went to the market to buy some fresh tulips and narcissus so now everything is clean and looks really good. I'm going back to work tomorrow, I'll be teaching Dutch to one class. I'm anxious to see how it will go, but I am looking forward to it. I can't wait to be myself again!

Friday, February 02, 2007

A little

Yes, I'm feeling a little better. I have more energy in the day time now, so I do way more than a few weeks ago. My body isn't used to that yet though, so I'm in bed before 21:30 most nights. But that's ok. It's worth it. I went to work today to talk to my assistant principal about returning to school. We agreed that I'll come back slowly, building it up step by step. Next week I'll return to my Dutch class (3 times a week, one class period) and after doing that for two weeks we're going to see how many hours of music I'll add to that.

I also started to study again. I received an e-mail from a professor that a make-up presentation moment was scheduled for Monday, and if I wanted to do my literature presentation that I could still make the credit. Of course I want that! It's a nice way to pick up studying again. I set my kitchen timer for 45 minutes and make myself concentrate on my book. Then I allow myself to do something else before returning to the book again. It's not easy, but I can do it.
I'm slowly climbing out of the pit that is mononucleosis... Yay!