Friday, March 30, 2007

Friday 30 March 2007: Sarah spends her last day at home seeing colleagues at lunch and sitting at a computer...and getting a mini-facial and browjob.

Sarah says:
What can I say? There isn't much left to say. Here I am after having a back operation - a fake disc put into my back - on December 14th 2006 - here I am 3.5 months later feeling great! I still can't believe it. I am forever thankful for this. I feel renewed and improved and full of energy. I hope this lasts, I hope this lasts, I hope this lasts...

On this last day I met Heidi and my replacement for lunch at Bio Planet. I wanted to thank the person replacing me for all her good and hard work, which really helped me not to worry too much and not to be stressed and all that. She's a star I tell ya! I can't believe I return to normal life on Monday already! Did I already say that I feel renewed and improved and full of energy. I hope this lasts, I hope this lasts, I hope this lasts...

This will be a calm weekend indeed gearing up for starting life again on Monday. I'll see Heidi for a bit tomorrow and I'll see the band G├Ęsman gig tomorrow night at De Kreun and that's about it!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Thursday 29 March 2007: Sarah's webcam takes crappy photos and it will be another week till she gets her camera back...

Sarah says:
Bad webcam photo. Nice day though. Had some expat friends visiting and had a good lunch together and nice talks. The best part was not being stuck to the computer like I had been the days before and will be a big part of tomorrow and will be all the time starting Monday. Time is a ticking big time. My time is up folks. I will get my camera back next Wednesday - this means we'll have another rehearsal next Wednesday. That means I sort of have a band again I guess. What does that mean? More like, what will that mean? Time will tell. Time is on my side, yes it is!

And all I will add is a big freaking YEY! and a big freaking IT'S ABOUT TIME!!!! regarding the following news about Iraq! On the other hand, it won't mean jack once Bush vetoes it and the Congress can't override the veto because there won't be enough votes. It's a start and let's hope an end is in sight...

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Wednesday 28 March 2007: Sarah says a quick hello and goodbye as she is too busy to stop and chat today...Imagine that!

Sarah says:
I had hoped to be able to spend some quality time with my daughter today (see below photo) as it will be our last Wednesday afternoon together for a very long time as I start work next Monday but... I am doing some freelance work all this week and it is taking up all my time! It's also training me to sit for long periods of time at a computer again. So far so good. Only lingering problem from my back surgery is the annoying pain in my right side I get while driving and standing for too long. Well, back to that mouse you see behind me in the above photo...
By the way, my kid told me she wanted to be a model today - a fashion designer, she said, who models her own clothes. She said she has been practicing how to walk and to pose. Oh my lord... Not sure that's a good thing! Good thing kids are whimsical and change their what-they-want-to-be-when-they-grow-up proclamations regularly...

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tuesday 27 March 2007: Sarah tries out someone else's camera while hers has gone missing and comes up blurry! And Heidi and YMA pass by for a pic!

Updated later: So Heidi stopped by and we took the above photos with the camera I am borrowing. Heidi was going for a walk after being stuck inside an office all day on this lovely, sunny day. I was happy she had YMA with her. As you can see above, YMA and my kid were communicating. My kid looks so big all of a sudden! YMA is growing so fast too. It's crazy.
I'm very happy to report that Bart, the possible new drummer of our possible new band kindly went back to the rehearsal place and located my long-lost, much-missed camera. I will wait to get it until we have our next rehearsal next week probably. So in the meantime, I will get creative. For example, I realized today I could use my webcam to take photos so I guess that is what I will do until I get my camera back.
I'm just back from my Dutch lesson and now it's late and time to go to sleep. Tomorrow is the last Wednesday for a long time that I'll get to pick my daughter up at school and make her lunch and eat lunch with her and spend the afternoon with her. I will miss that so much. I will miss her. I will miss eating fruit with her everyday after school...
Sarah says:
That's the best I could do today. Borrowed someone's camera. Have to figure it out still. Shall try to get a shot of Heidi later too if she passes by on her walk in the sun with YMA after work. I miss Heidi and YMA. I really do!

I have a lot of freelance editing work to do right now so no time to write here I'm afraid! Maybe later. Tonight I have my Dutch class come to think of it! So maybe not.

In the meantime, click to this article and find out how to keep your skin looking young! It's simpler than we thought and we don't have to pay as much for creams as simple, cheaper creams seem to work as well as seemingly more complex and certainly more expensive ones - except for maybe sun cream. Nothing new here but always good to know as the sunny days are coming our way! Wear suncream everyone! Not just to avoid wrinkles but to avoid cancer! Wear it everyday even when the sun is not shining bright - you can get the worst burns in cloudy weather. It's the best protection you can get from all the bad rays. It's very necessary! Also - limit your visits to the sun bank! Not only is it dangerous but it ages your skin badly. The trouble is, you only see that later! Everyday I see the damage I did to my skin as a teenager. More and more brown spots are popping up where I used to get sun burns all the time. I hate it!

And I definitely have to pick up one of these books about the poetry of bodily functions for my child (or is it for me?).

Monday, March 26, 2007


Sarah says:
In the meantime, I offer you as temporary solution, this photo of Heidi and me from the 26th of March 2006. Here's what happened - I went to rehearse with my possible new band mates from my possible new band. Of course I had to document that so I took a photo of all of us. And that's the last I remember! It must have fallen out of my overstuffed bag - that's all I can think of. It must be lying on the floor somewhere in the rehearsal room. How annoying and sad is that! Now I have to arrange for it to be looked for and picked up by one of the guys who lives in Gent and who has the key. What a pain in the arse. I just hope my camera is safe and sound and gets returned to me. If not, I'll cry a river. I mean it! My camera is probably one of the most used things in my daily life. I want and need it by my side again! Plus, I got a good photo tonight of me with the possible band mates. Once I get my camera back, I will make sure to upload the photo from today here!!! As for this week, well I guess I'll just have to get creative! I doubt Heidi will take over as her computer is down - so perhaps it will just be photos from last year - a little walk down memory lane or I'll just borrow someone else's camera. Alternatively, y'all can send a photo to me to post in place of mine. Go for it! I'll take whatever you have got.

As for the rehearsal - well, I'm excited about it and look forward to the next one. I think once we get into the swing of things it will be very enjoyable. Now we are playing with covers. Eventually we'll try out some original stuff I suppose. If I don't get my camera back I'll take that as a bad omen! Or maybe I should take it as a new start! Maybe this is a sign that Face The Day must come to an end! Time will tell and we'll see - but don't count on it! If you know me then you know I enjoy this outlet too much to just give it up like that!

Stay tuned to see what comes of my camera. Once I have it back, I'll write more about the guys in my new possible band though you can check out their My Space pages - except for one of them who may not have one - if he does, I don't know it.

Here are the links to:

Bart, the drummer,

Bart, the bass player

Yves, one of the guitar players.

I don't have a link for the other guitar player named Giovanni.
They are a good bunch of lads. We'll see what comes of this. It depends on the camera I guess (haha).

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Sunday 25 March 2007: Sarah is still in Delft enjoying the sunny day and good human and animal company...

Sarah says:
So we were in Delft and guess who happened to be having a free gig at a record shop today? Well I'll tell ya - it was Absynthe Minded - the band I told y'all to check out the other day when I wrote about their new album "There is Nothing" that you can listen to via this link on Luisterpaal still. Their singer Bert Ostyn, who comes from Vichte, where my husband grew up and where I got married, was kind enough to let me take the above photo.

And after the gig we moved on to a great lunch at ASG and TG's little home and then to an animal farm. I of course had to ask that goat to be my guest here. My daughter followed suit and asked another goat to do the same. Notice how we chose goats that sort of looked like each of us, the narcissists we are!

And as for my fave Post Secret pick of the week, I'm going to have to go with the one below. It's that whole Devil's Advocate thing again - just this quiet need to stir stuff up sometimes. Parties are as good a place to mess with people's heads as anywhere else, right? There is something fun about watching people not know what to say. Parties in general are awkward - don't you think? I mean I am pretty social and not shy one bit but the conversations, the small talk, the follow-up questions, all that stuff - it can be challenging. Mostly the awkward things I say at parties and anywhere for that matter are anything but on purpose - but every now and then. I have always loved the Joni Mitchell song People's Parties because she describes the inability to be light and easy so well and how easy it is to be nervous and awkward, even the most ballsy of us. Check out the words via this link.

Saturday 24 March 2007: Sarah welcomes special Face The Day Guests ASG and TG in the quaint Dutch city Delft...

Sarah says:
Went to Delft in The Netherlands with my husband and daughter today to see our friend ASG and her husband TG. It was of course great to see ASG again - last time I saw her was June I think while looking for a wedding dress for her in Belgium. It was also nice to get to know TG better! We'll be going to their wedding ceremony in Scotland in June - we meaning not just my little family but also Heidi and Nico! I have never gone on any sort vacation with Heidi so that will be a whole lot of fun - or it will be the end of our relationship! You know what they say - if you can't vacation together your friendship can't last. Or is that marriage? Oh, I don't know. All I know is that I vacation really well with my husband and kid. We love packing up for the weekend and hitting the road. It's so cozy and fun and great to combine these travels with seeing good friends abroad. Above you see ASG getting all loopy! Her little house on a canal is so very quaint and lovely. Small - as most Dutch homes are - but so cute. Delft is a special little city. I am so glad we went there.
In the above photo you can see that TG decided to join in the Face The Day fun. He is from Scotland. ASG is from The States but I met her when she lived in Brussels. My husband and TG were talking about the possibility of my husband's wearing a whole Scottish wedding outfit (kilt and all) at the wedding. I hope my husband will splurge and go for it. What about you Nico? You want to join in the fun? And here above is me with the famous Piet Hein, whom you can read further about via this link. Apparently he was a very celebrated Dutch naval officer / folk hero. My husband asked me to get a photo with his tomb in the Oude Kerk in Delft. He's liked and known in Belgium because after all of his very heroic acts the poor guy was killed by pirates in Ostend. So now you know! By the way, I also saw the grave of the beloved Dutch painter from Delft, Johannes Vermeer there. And at the Nieuwe Kerk nearby, I saw the tomb of William the Silent. Interestingly, most of the Dutch Royal family - those from the House of Orange - Nassau, is buried there too. I think I walked over more dead bodies today than perhaps ever before...

Friday, March 23, 2007

Friday 23 March 2007: Heidi almost falls head-first on the floor but lives to laugh about it as Sarah gets her cold feet ready for the warm spring!

Sarah says:
See how smiley Heidi is up there? Well that's because she was leaning on that table and the table started to tip forward and she almost ended up with her and my heads rolling on the floor - silly girl! She also looks happy because she is happy or seems it anyway. Everything is going back to normal and is going smoothly. She can't complain. Nor can I. I got my hairy man-legs waxed today and got a pedicure with polish. It's supposed to be warm Sunday and spring is on its way even though it is way too cold today to be wearing those open shoes in the photo below.
*** Later that day, I just got this link from someone. It's a comedy sketch about Bush, Iraq and Iran on YouTube. Check it out. You will laugh a lot - it's painful though.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Thursday 22 March 2007: Still no Heidi as Sarah tries to look cheery even though she is weary and even leery or is it wary?

Sarah says:
Oh C'mon and just admit it! You have as much trouble with weary, leery and wary as I do. You mix them all up too. You Dutch speakers reading this especially because the English language is crazy!

Today I am seeing what it will feel like to sit at a computer all day as I have a bunch of stuff to do on the PC and return to work in a week and want to know if my body can take 8 hours of this. So far, so good. Strangely, I seem to only get that side-pain when I drive and when I stand for too long. I really wonder why that is. I'll have to ask the doctor when I see him. I don't want to have to deal with that discomfort every time I am in a car. It happens at short and long distances. I don't get it! The physio-therapist says it's probably because my spine position altered from the new disc being placed in it. He pressed on a the middle area of my spine and man did that hurt - and then he traced his finger along a line down my side. It was the exact line that hurts. So the pain appears to come from where he pressed. But how to fix that! He couldn't say. Man I can't wait to get stronger. As of June I can hopefully begin some fitness. Right now it's just walking and getting spine massages - which isn't exactly exerting myself, is it!

So Belgium is all happy because yesterday there was a mass wedding against racism in Sint Niklaas, which you can read about here and probably in your own newspapers as it became an international story - with the fact that CNN and Al Jazeera were there to cover it being big news here in itself.

Oh Belgium feels so very small with this in mind. It's so odd. Three couples refused to let a black alderman perform their wedding ceremony a while back here. It's great that this became a news story and that people took a stand against such stupidity. I guess it's a good thing that this mass symbolic wedding happened here yesterday but something doesn't feel right at all about this.

In America, the big discussion is always about Gay Marriage being wrong - according to Bush and his religious-right supporters who pay him a lot to take this stand. Here in Belgium and in several places in Europe, Gay Marriage is legal and accepted.

Yet here in Belgium there has to be a media-grabbing mass wedding against racism because racism is rampant in this country.

It's just so bizarre. I don't get it. I really don't. I seriously do not understand why anyone gives a flying fuc* if someone is gay or black or white or a Jew or a Muslim, cross-dresser, transvestite, whatever. WE ARE ALL THE FREAKING SAME EVEN WHEN WE ARE DIFFERENT!!!!! I am so naive I guess but it shocks me every time. People are so damn ignorant. It could all be so much simpler if we were all just a little more tolerant. I have no solutions and I guess it's good that such stands are made against such stupidities but I don't know - I just think it's almost pathetic that there has to be such a demonstration in the first place. You also have Elton John telling people to stand up to bigots today in the news. This is all good and necessary but it just annoys the hell out of me. Why anyone wastes time on hate and bigotry - I don't know! And how to solve all that? I don't know!

Now subjects like this one are far more interesting to spend one's time worrying about! While some people are being bigots and racists, others are trying to figure out what to do with a 1000 pound squid!

Oh screw it all! Just listen to the new Absynthe Minded album "There is Nothing" via this link. Great stuff. Great Belgian band.

Speaking of music - Monday I meet up with possible new band in Gent! Can't wait! Finally back in the mood.

And that's all I have to say today. I may be smiling in the above photo but for some reason I am pissed off today. Maybe because I am stuck at my computer!!! Maybe it's because my feet are cold - which reminds me that I wanted to mention that my feet have shrunk since I got my back operation. I know that sounds crazy but they are not as wide as they were and my normal shoes all feel too big now. So not only did I get taller, my feet got smaller. How weird is that!

Oh - and last thingy - you know how when I am not complaining about chin hair and being too fat (in my quest for being the most vain person out there) I am going on about my formerly perfect teeth that have gone yellow (another lovely part of aging and living in Belgium) - well, I have been trying out using some hydrogen peroxide gargle each day and I think it is working slowly but surely - hopefully without stripping all the enamel off my teeth. Go try it yourselves!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Wednesday 21 March 2007: Heidi springs back to work after 9 months home and Sarah goes grey in a big way on this non-springy, windy day...

Sarah says:
As my childhood doctor in New York City used to say: "Urine's fine". I know the funniness of that statement does not play out well on this here blog but trust me, it was funny all those years and it still is funny. You'd go into the city to see this guy and he had the most old-fashioned doctor's office possible. He looked like something out of a silent movie. He moved slowly and liked giving out samples of new medication a little too much. He barely said a word ever. He'd always take a urine sample (pee in a little cup) and he'd come out of a back room and say very slowly with something like an accent "Urine's fine". You always felt relieved at that moment as if your pee being okay meant everything. It meant you weren't about to die! It meant you weren't sick with some terrible disease. It meant life. You were alive - and it sounded so dang funny.

I don't know how or when or why but one day my older brothers and I - one of us anyway - used the phrase "urine's fine" randomly and it clicked that we all were very familiar with that same phrase from our own experiences with that doctor. From then on it became a joke between us that came up just enough to stay funny. We never overused it and we still don't. When one of us happens to throw it out there out of the blue, it strikes a funny bone big time usually.

Today I sent a brother a message after my mammogram and of course the message was: "Urine's fine". If you haven't gotten the joke yet, that means that everything is okay. My boobs are all right at the moment. I don't need another mammogram for two years. So that is great news!

For all you women out there who are about my age (35) or older and who haven't had their first mammogram yet, PLEASE PLEASE schedule one soon! Lying in that room today waiting for the second part of the examination - the echo graph - I couldn't help but think about people I know who have gone through the awful moment of discovering a knot or bump in their breast and getting a bad diagnosis. It made me teary-eyed. I can't imagine how terrible it must feel to be told you have a cancerous tumor or tumors. Preventative mammograms are fast and easy. It took me about 10 minutes in total - about 3 minutes, 4 times. They take one boob at a time and grab it, place it on the machine and flatten it as you don't breath or move. Then they do the same sideways. Sideways is more tricky as it is uncomfortable and harder to stay still - but it goes so very quickly. By the time I was in the echo graph room, they already had the results ready. Since I got the all clear, I didn't even have to have the echo graph. I had to pay Euro 96 for the mammogram. Had I had the echo, it would have been about Euro 60 more I think. I'll get some of that money back from the insurance even.

So ladies from 35 on - go get your first mammogram if you haven't already or go get your next one if it is time! It's so important!

Now on to another subject : Permanent hair removal with the VPL system!

I went to the info-session about this kind of hair removal today because as I have written here before, I suffer from the not-to-be-ashamed of chin-hair!!!! I hate it though oh so very, very much so I have to get rid of it or I'll go nuts. The woman zapped my chin three times, killing three hairs apparently. It smelled rotten and felt strange but went very quickly. And the great news is - it costs much less than I thought. I should be able to get rid of all the hair that exists now after 10 visits, each with 6 weeks in between. Each visit costs Euro 50 plus Euro 1 per each zap. I'd probably need about 10 zaps per session to begin, with that number diminishing as hairs disappear. So in total, the whole process should cost me around Euro 600! I thought it would be so much more so I'm pretty excited. The crappy thing is that you can't pluck for the whole duration of the process - you can only shave!!!! I have never shaved my chin. I hate to start. You also can't be in the sun at least for the beginning because the paler skin, the better. Luckily I have the right combo of really dark hair and really pale skin so it should work really well. Of course now I have to read up on it and see the pros and cons and testimonies. Then I have to persuade everyone I know who ever gives me presents to contribute to this process for my birthday and for Christmas!!! The amazing thing is that the process also clears up acne and scars in the chin area. I could of course get my moustache area done too but so far that hair doesn't bother me - it seems more normal - it doesn't make me self-conscience. So we'll see - I might do it or might not but man will I be pleased to one day be rid of this problem! I am excited by the prospects!!!

And finally, check out my grey, grey, grey hair in the photo above. Seems I am no spring chicken anymore - a mammogram, hair removal info and such grey hair all in one day! I will wait as long as possible to dye my hair. In that way I am not that vain. I like grey and black hair. At least right now I do.

And Heidi - our dear, dear Heidi - I hope we'll hear from her soon and that she had a good day!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Tuesday 20 March 2007: Heidi and Sarah (and YMA) share their last coffee-soup-milk together as Heidi prepares to head back to real-time tomorrow...

Sarah says:
First of all - should Heidi or should she not buy the shirt she's wearing in the above photo in the dressing room of the shop WE? She was smart today and tried it on but did not purchase - practicing good self-control. We both agree she should buy it because it looks great and is her style. All we need is one comment here saying buy it and she'll buy it. She'll probably get the dress she tried on anyway but the shirt - well, that's up to y'all. We'd really like to know what Nico, for example, thinks!

So see the photo below? That's the last coffee had in our time off together. I of course had soup. Yma had milk. But that is it. The end of an era folks! Time's up! Heidi starts work again tomorrow after 9 months or so I think. And I start work in about 12 days or so again after three and a half home. We have been very lucky to be home at the same time for different reasons. It's uncanny that things ended up this way! It helped me get through being at home and recovering from surgery and all that. It's not only been a pleasure seeing Heidi at least a few days a week but also seeing YMA. Now I'll only see YMA every couple of weeks or so. Heidi I'll still see every weekday at work so that will feel pretty normal pretty soon. Anyway - it's been nice and helpful and comforting. The clock is ticking now for sure. Just 12 more days for me and 18 or so more hours for Heidi!

By the way, I'll get my haircut this afternoon and post a pic later. In the meantime, oh me oh my I am still having major belly cramps every time I eat! It's not normal. It sucks the energy away because it hurts!!! I hope I get through my Dutch lesson without such cramps tonight and through my first mammogram tomorrow.

And later that we are - my daughter and I with fresh new haircuts after a mother-daughter afternoon. I played it safe and stuck with the tried and true. My kid took a chance and went way shorter than usual. Look how old she is getting! Time flies for sure.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Monday 19 March 2007: No Heidi today as she starts her countdown and as Sarah suffers from major cramping of her rotting intestines...

Sarah says:
Oh help me Lord. I was up half the night with belly cramps. Kind of like dry heaving of the inner body. Was it something I ate? A stomach flu going around? I have no idea - but it's still here, coming and going. I think it's going to be another rough night! I had a lovely day though with a friend in Gent so I can't complain.

I want to complain to Belgian TV channels Een and Canvas though. They scheduled the first episode of the new Woestijnvis show 0032 at the same time as the new show LUX xl. Luckily LUX xl was only 5 minutes so that I could see a lot of 0032 but still! What were they thinking! 0032 is on right now and is focusing on a woman from Ukraine living in Belgium. It's a show about 11 different foreigners living here in Belgium. So far it seems very interesting with a lot of experiences to relate to. Strangely, from the first scenes with the woman Larisa and the Belgians she has contact with - the divisions are evident. The Belgian women around her seem so stiff and cold and safe. It's hard to explain - but you clearly see the different worlds right there in her living room. The woman speaks of how Belgians were unfriendly at first - afraid of anything foreign. I am curious to see what the "message" that comes out of this program will be. I hope to get to watch it each week. As an American here - a whitey, a real Westerner - I am a different kind of foreigner of course, much more accepted - much more understood. It's really annoying sometimes. I hope the show does get across that though we are all different, we are really all the same - and there's nothing to be afraid of! I wish Belgians were less afraid. I really do. Generalizing - I know - but in a big way true. There is a story behind every person. It's so obvious of course.
This program is already making me look forward to my Dutch class tomorrow. There are people from 11 nationalities in the class. All of us in the same boat really though sailing in various directions. All of us trying so hard to fit in to this place and losing little bits of ourselves therefore - and gaining a lot along the way too of course - but it can be really hard to be a foreigner - really, really hard - trust me, even I, the white, western American, know.

As for the show LUX xl, it was a fast 5 minutes but who can complain when it's Tom Van Dyck talking about Bosch! I can't wait to see more! But I still think it's too bad that it's on on Mondays at the same time as 0032!

Jeez these images on 0032 of Chernobyl are terribly moving and disturbing.

Good program. I wasn't sure it would be because it could easily fall into a stereotype but so far so good. I was waiting patiently for a new Woestijnvis program and this may be it I am happy to say. I hope there will be a great new comedy show like In De Gloria or Het Eiland eventually but for now, Woestijnvis has done it again - quality programs, quality writing - more power to them. Woestijnvis is one of my favorite things about Belgium!

Now back to my intestines. Oh my oh my how they are cramping. This is going on for too long. It's going to be a hard night again and man do I need a good sleep more than anything else.

Good night -- and wish me good luck.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Sunday 18 March 2007: It was either this one or "my blog is my only friend"... Sarah says on this Post Secret Sunday...

Sarah says:
Need I say more about my fave Post Secret entry this week! It was either this one or the "My Blog is my only friend" one. Both are only partially true thankfully...There were a few great ones this week! Check them out.

Look at the protests that took place in Brussels today. Good this happens but I do think the request that no American troops be allowed in Belgium is going a bit too far...

And in honor of Heidi's almost being done with breast-feeding and in honor of parenthood in general and the mistakes we sometimes make, I offer you this article from The Onion today:

Father Not Letting Firstborn Repeat Mistakes He Made As Nine-Month-Old

March 14, 2007 Issue 43•11

NAPERVILLE, IL—Citing a desire to ensure that his nine-month-old son, Jason, stays on the right path, Bill Yardley told reporters yesterday that he is determined not to let the infant make the same mistakes he made at that age.
"Back then, I didn't know my place in the world—I was young, directionless, aimless—and I don't want him to fall into those same bad habits," Yardley said, adding that he vowed to discourage his son from the same immature fixation with breasts that "set the tone for [his] entire misguided youth." "I only behaved that way to get attention. It was stupid. He's got his whole life ahead of him, and I just don't want him to ruin it."
Yardley added that he knew his son was starting to follow in his footsteps when Jason began "hitting the bottle" earlier and earlier each morning.


Saturday, March 17, 2007

Saturday 17 March 2007: Sarah gets her portriat done by her biggest fan...

Sarah says:
My daughter drew that picture of me a few days ago for Women's Day. It really looks like me if I do say so myself. Today it's a me-and-my-daughter day. We went and saw a little fashion show. We got her some leggings. We ate an ice cream (I ate a frozen yogurt for you diet trackers out there!). Tonight she'll sleep at her cousin's house and my husband and I will go have dinner at the Jesus restaurant again with some good friends. Tomorrow I think we'll sleep in till at least noon for once! That will be a treat!

Keeping it short right now as these entries will get shorter and shorter again as I have less and less time...

Friday, March 16, 2007

Friday 16 March 2007: Heidi sends YMA to the babysitter for the first time all day and Sarah takes Heidi away to get her mind off it...

Sarah says:
Reunited and it feels so good... That's what Heidi is probably thinking in the above photo. She's just picked YMA up from the babysitter after her first day there! Heidi returns to work mid-next week and tried out the whole new schedule today. It's always pretty emotional that first day you give your child away to a caretaker. It takes some getting used to for sure! Heidi was a trooper. We hung out all day starting at around 9am and I dropped her off by 5pm to get YMA. All went well and both Heidi and YMA are happy to see each other again and have 4 more days together to look forward to until Heidi returns to real-time.

I still have about two weeks left at home and 8 more trips to the physio-therapist. Today once again I had that annoying pulling feeling in my right side. It happens when I drive it seems or when I stand too long. It's not painful but it is tiring and uncomfortable. I have to ask the doctor about that. Other than that, I really feel fine! This weekend other than a dinner tomorrow night and an afternoon visit on Sunday, I don't have many plans. It will be very relaxing.

Have a good weekend y'all.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Thursday 15 March 2007: Hopefully we'll see Heidi a little later - in the meantime, Sarah celebrates her 11th wedding anniversary -- with Marv!

Sarah says:
Above you can see my husband Tom-ske (aka Marv-haha) and I bright and early this morning - our 11th wedding anniversary! That's right - we tied the knot in Vichte, Belgium on the 15th of March 1996. The bride wore rusty-red (made by my husband's mother) and a serious face, as you can see below. And the groom had ridiculously long locks and that 1990s facial hair thing going on. It was a really lovely small ceremony and celebration with a few family members from The States and a few friends from abroad - along with a few Belgian family and friends. At that point, I couldn't speak or understand Dutch at all. It was all a bit of a blur. But I was majorly in love and am happy to say I still am. I can still totally feel it. Not every moment of everyday or anything - but a lot. My husband is the best person ever to happen to me - along with my daughter. I feel tremendously lucky in life to have such love, companionship, support and goodness - and fun, fun, fun of course. Our faces, hairstyles and glasses have changed in 11 years - and I'd say we look much better now than then, but our hearts remain much the same and our bond is tighter than ever.

In the photo below you can see our second ceremony that took place in New Paltz, New York on the 21st of June 1997. This time, the bride wore white - a beautiful dress also made by my husband's mother. It was a very hot day full of very bad food, up-and-down emotions and lots of family and friends from all over, including several that flew in from Belgium. A couple of months later on the 23rd of August 1997, we had yet another ceremony in Belgium (for all of our European friends and Belgian family and friends) on a boat on the hottest day of the year a week after my appendix had been removed. We had all of our friends from my exchange program from 16 different countries I think staying at our old house on army beds in our attic. It was amazingly fun! An absolutely crowded house and fun-filled hearts. It was a great day!Incidentally, right now Dr. Phil is on in the background and its an episode about problems between couples and their in-laws and parents not approving of the wedding. Thankfully, we never had those sorts of problems and still don't. Everyone gets along just fine.

I remember saying to my then boyfriend that we had to get married because I had to get an ID card so that I could find real work! I had been in Belgium since September 1995 and it was January or maybe February 1996. I had had enough of having to make sure I left Belgium to get my passport stamped in another country so that it would buy me another three months in the country. I had had enough of not working and of watching too much TV all day and thinking I accomplished something if I went to one shop and bought apples in Dutch. I wanted my identity back. I wanted to work. I wanted to know more of what the future would hold. I wanted more permanency. So I flippantly asked Tom to marry me so I could work and the rest is history. A few days after our first Belgian wedding I got a job teaching English - so my plan worked! A few years later, I had a baby - the absolute love of my and my husband's life - our dual-heartbeat.

Windows are way too expensive but life is way too good. I love my husband terribly and feel totally loved back by him - which isn't bad after 11 years - and the newest earplugs are working!!! I don't hear the snoring as much so I am sleeping better - finally some rest, after 11 years.

Just in case my husband is reading this: Traditional 11th wedding anniversary gifts have a theme of Steel. A contemporary or modern 11th anniversary gift has a theme of Fashion Jewellery. The flowers associated with the 11th anniversary are Morning Glories
The Gemstone list shows Hematite and Turquoise associated with this Wedding Anniversary

The funny thing is that our wedding rings are made with a lot of Hematite - but we rarely wear our rings - either of us - never really have. Not sure why that is. As for Turquoise, no thanks - I have enough of that and wore it in two of the three wedding ceremonies. Steel? What is nice and made out of steel I wonder? A new pan? Steel doesn't sound very romantic! Fashion Jewellery? That sounds like something Barbie would wear, not me. Morning Glories?! I didn't know that was the name of a flower. I thought it was something men suffer from each morning, the poor bastards.

Speaking of the flower which you can see here, isn't the following description of the flower beautiful :"The flower typically lasts for a single morning and dies in the afternoon. New flowers bloom each day".

Nice metaphor for the love in a marriage - each day can be filled with a lot of goodness but also by a lot of pettiness, bickering and annoying compromise - up-and-downs - but happily, even after the biggest fight that can bring up all that ugliness that only married people show each other, new goodness blooms each day!

May all your marriages, pairings and partnerships be good ones that fill you up with those random moments of joy that we are lucky to get at least every now and then...

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Wednesday 14 March 2007: Sarah washes the windows all day long... and wants to jump out of one that night after getting a new window quote!!!!

Sarah says:
Seriously - all day long...SO TIRED NOW... (after all - this was the first time I have really exerted myself since my back operation! I take a lot of solace in the fact that when I used to wash the windows I would be in agony very quickly and for days thereafter. I have no back pain at all from what I did today - just shoulder, wrist and ankle pain!)

Later that night:
Just got first quote for getting new wooden-framed double-glass windows in our living room, kitchen, pantry, hall way, guest room - and a new front door - and guess what, I might just jump out a window and end it all right now! It's actually exactly what I expected so I am not shocked or anything. It just confirms that we need to win the lottery, rob a bank, get a few more jobs each, sell house and move into a straw hut or re-think this new window plan big time! Maybe Al Gore can buy is new windows. We'll be doing our part to improve the energy situation - losing all that heat to single-glass - pumping up the energy usage therefore. Al - if you are reading this, can you please send us a check now? A fatty?

And last - check out this article all you weather and energy freaks to know what Belgium is doing all week to combat all the particles floating in the ar due to lack of wind.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Tuesday 13 March 2007: Heidi and Sarah get caught up in a Socialist Parade on their daily walk...

Sarah says:
Today Heidi and I were on our "daily" walk in Kortrijk and we ran into a parade of Socialists marching against Belgium splitting up into Wallonia and Flanders - so for Belgium staying together as one country. We are all for Belgium staying just as it is with it's 3 official languages and its various divisions. So we marched right along with them on this sunny day! It was actually getting too hot outside for my sweater and coat. Can you imagine - a whole week of great weather! This is fabulous. I will take another walk in a few hours to soak up more sun. I have some errands to do in the center so rather than drive, I'll walk all afternoon and get some exercise whilst at it.

Tonight I start my Dutch conversation lessons. I'm really excited. I so look forward to having more confidence in Dutch - finally! I mean it's been 11 years that I have lived here. It's really time. Too bad this article out today says that a lot of foreigners drop out of Dutch language courses and never better their Dutch skills in the end. I hope I persevere! I really plan to. I'll report back tomorrow on how it all went. I also look forward to meeting other non-native Dutch speakers in the class. Who knows, maybe I'll make a new friend! It's been so long since I have been a student. It will be tiring but worthwhile I'm sure!

Monday, March 12, 2007

Monday 12 March 2007: Heidi and Sarah choke the chicken at the market this sunny Monday morn...AND SARAH GETS THE BIGGEST INSULT EVER!!!!!!

Sarah says:

I forgot to say this before so I am adding it now. I got the biggest insult in my life today! I was with Heidi in a shop and someone she knows - an older woman- was talking to her and meeting Yma and all and she saw me sitting there waiting for Heidi and she asked Heidi if I was Heidi's mother!!!! HEIDI'S FREAKING MOTHER!!!!! Can you imagine! I mean I know Heidi looks young and I am almost 10 years older than her and I do have grey hair - but C'MON!!!! I DO NOT LOOK LIKE I COULD BE HEIDI'S MOTHER!!! Please tell me I DO NOT LOOK LIKE I COULD BE HEIDI'S MOTHER!!!! BOOH HOO AND WAW WAW WAW! I guess it's high time for me to start dying my grey hair!!! But I won't. I will hold out for as long as I can and be a crazy grey and black-haired women -hag - whatever! You should have seen Heidi's face and my face after the woman said that to us! We couldn't hide our surprise. It was actually pretty funny. Painful - but funny. Luckily later someone else out of the blue told me I look great so that turned my vanity mood good again! You can be sure there will be a lot of mom and daughter jokes between me and Heidi from now on. As Yma's new grandma, I'm going to have to start babysitting her on Wednesdays. And as Heidi's new mom, I'm going to have to start giving her bigger presents! I love it when Heidi calls me mom! This has opened up a whole new more nurturing world for us! (hahaha)

Monday morning market day. Time for Heidi and me to get our baked chickens on a spit. They didn't have the large one I asked for so they threw in a thigh. We had to share it with you all of course. This is Heidi and my and our family's dinners for tonight and maybe lunch tomorrow too! I think we'll miss our walks to the center together and doing these sorts of things together. I will always remember fondly the first time Heidi and I bought a whole market chicken together... Heidi was being a wussy and didn't want to get her precious hands dirty with a little chicken fat so I grabbed that thigh and made sure to get it in the photo. And to think that both Heidi and I were vegetarians for many years. We are such hypocrites!

Other than the chicken, please take note of how very sunny it is in the above photo. This is a wonderful day and the weather shall stay so good until Friday! This is like a gift! Everyone is getting happy and smiling and walking. We were definitely not at all alone on our walk this morning. We were surrounded by other moms with babies and by lots of people from the Heilige Familie. Everyone was so jolly. I look forward to lots of more walks this week. It's great that Heidi and I will begin working again and getting back to real-time along with the sunshine. That will make the transition smooth and make it easier to wake up each day.

Nothing more to tell you my my, imagine that...

Except one thing of course! This article about more homes being built with two master bedrooms to make for better rest and better marriages really interests me! What a great idea! I know the idea of not sharing the same bed and room sends alarm bells mostly so wouldn't it be great if it gets legitimized and becomes the wave of the future! I'm not so sure it will save rather than ruin marriages but the idea of a room of one's own is really appealing! Look at Frida Khalo and Diego Rivera - they basically each had their own homes with a bridge in between. Space is a great thing. Sleep is a great thing! I could definitely dig it! But I am not sure my marriage could survive separate rooms. Show me some statistics in a few years - if the divorce rate starts going down as more and more two-master bedroom homes get built and lived in - well then, I might have to propose a few renovations here!

"More and more couples in the US are ordering separate master bedrooms
in their new homes to help ensure a more harmonious marriage, research

And isn't the info in this article really odd? America springs the clocks ahead three weeks earlier than usual to save energy!

Sunday, March 11, 2007


These photos just in from Erika's babyshower. Via webcam, I flew very quickly over to New York to join in the fun!

AND THERE THEY ARE - MONA, RACHEL AND ERIKA - the best girls in the world! It was so nice to see them tonight and see Erika celebrating! It brought tears to my eyes!
I got to watch Erika opening all her presents. It was great! I was like a spy because they all forgot I was there watching... What a odd experience! Glad I was there!
Good night!

Sunday 11 March 2007: By chance, Heidi and Sarah run into each other today and get a quick shot after Sarah has a book day! HAPPY BABY SHOWER E-ROCKER

Sarah says:
What a weekend! It's been non-stop really. Not too physically demanding luckily because I still have to be in semi-rest mode. Part-time rest and part-time semi-normal life. But this weekend was packed with people, games, books and fun. I didn't expect to see Heidi at all this weekend but just accidentally and happily ran into her in Kortrijk so we snapped the quick outdoor action shot above as we were two ships passing in the night so-to-speak.

Just before I ran into Heidi, I had been to see the above very well-known Belgian children's book writer Marc De Bel with my daughter and husband at the Buda-eiland jeugdboeken feest in Kortrijk. I had to get a photo with him of course because as you know I have fun getting photos of myself for Face The Day with whatever famous people I happen to see - even though half the time I don't know who they are here in Belgium. Generally my husband or whomever says "go get a photo with that person - he's famous in Belgium" - so I take my orders and do it! Everyone is always really friendly about it. I play the unknowing American girl and just try to flatter the people! Today I just asked for a photo. Marc De Bel was busy. I didn't want to disturb him. He did a great job telling the very large audience of parents and children a story of his. It was very captivating. In fact, the whole day was! We began at 9am by going to Buda-eiland to see the Al Gore film An Inconvenient Truth while our kid saw a kid's film in another theater. Before that we had breakfast at the cinema. The film was good to see. Nothing we didn't know already but thought-provoking nonetheless and everyone should see it if you ask me. It just makes you stop and think about what you yourself might be able to do as a citizen of the world to make the world's climate changes less severe and dangerous. I can argue both sides of the argument and understand where the skeptics come from sometimes. But in the end, the proof is there and the earth is heating up. Maybe that is natural and bound to happen no matter what we do and the greater plan of the earth is to wipe us out and start over again as has happened to many species already. Maybe it's really out of our control. But I doubt it. We consume way too much of everything and abuse our resources no doubt. Why not go to the Climate Crisis website as the film suggests and see what steps you can take to make even just a small difference. We all should cut back a little on what we can. It'll be better for the earth and better for each of us.

I chose the below Post Secret entry about severe weather this week in honor of seeing the movie today and because I know many weather-obsessed people who might feel the same way the person who wrote the below postcard does! I have never been that aware of the weather. I certainly don't follow the weather news each day. I just sort of go with the flow. I mean I live in Belgium where the weather is 1 of three things: rainy and/or grey mostly, too warm two weeks in the year and perfect for about 10 scattered days a year. There are people in my life, however, who check the weather hourly and keep track of of every severe weather pattern out there! I find that amusing.

After seeing the movie, we went to see the Belgian children's book writer Geert de Kockere. I really enjoyed his readings and performance. After that we saw Sandra Van Kemzeke perform a lovely story. Then it was Marc De Bel, which was followed by a workshop with children's book illustrator Isabelle Vandenabeele. I was really happy about today because I could understand all of the Dutch all day long! It's probably because I have the Dutch level of a 10 year old - but that's okay with me. It's great to be able to follow along and to get the jokes. It made me feel good and not like the usual idiot I feel like in Dutch all the time.

Now I am sitting at my computer after a fabulous fun-filled weekend doing this and waiting for my friend Mona to Skype me from Face The Day google hit - Erika Dionisio's baby shower, which is happening right now at Mona's house! I wish I could be there!! My three lovely golden friends from "home" are all there - Mona, Erika and Rachel. So we are going to try to webcam me into the party for a little while. I was too late in sending my baby shower gifts to Erika so I sent the below photo to Mona to print out and give to her. I am so happy for Erika. I hope she has a great party today and has a good birth experience! I am so glad she's going to soon get to be filled with that amazing love-like-no-other. She deserves all that good love! I can't wait to meet Oscar and to see how he melts his mother's heart! I can't wait till I am in New York in October and can see Erika and Oscar!! And Mona. And Rachel and her kids. I wish there was more time and less distance to get to know the kids of my friends from back home. Right now I am just glad that I can go to the baby shower by webcam at least. Thank the lawd for the internet!

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Saturday 10 March 2007: Heidi is absent from here this weekend as Sarah welcomes ex-Greyn guitar-player Peter and his son Fre back to FTD!

Sarah says:
Check out Fre above. He's grown so much since the last time I saw him, which wasn't even that long ago. He's Greyn's ex-guitar player's baby boy. It was great to see Peter again after so long - probably since Greyn broke up in October. I miss seeing him every week like I used to when Greyn rehearsed on Wednesdays. But Greyn is long gone. Life has gone on and both Peter and I are looking at new band possibilities right now. Peter's wife Valerie made us such a great and tasty dinner. One of the things she made was a pesto-celeriac (knolselder) soup. It was so delicious! I will ask her if I can post her recipe here. If I do post it, I urge you all to try it out. She says it's easy and my oh my was it good! It's also healthy. I eat celeriac a lot as it's great grated and put in salads. It has such a soft taste. The rest of the dinner was really good too - eggplant and spicy peppers over thin pasta and shrimp mixed with tasty veggies with rosemary - covered in Ghanda ham and a slice of melted goat cheese. Yum!!! Thanks Val! And great to see you Peter!

Last night, we had some friends (Hilde, Steven and Tilly) over to play some games. We tried out a new one called Ticket To Ride. There's something about it that reminds me of the game Kolonisten, which we play often (ever since Heidi introduced us to it). In English it's known as Settlers of Catan. Anyway - Ticket To Ride is also nice to play. There was a lot of wine and a lot of laughs. It was a really fun night. Our friends brought their kids so there were 5 kids here and 5 adults. We all stayed up til around 2am! What were we parents thinking. We sort of forgot about the kids. They were all so tired and stared crying at about 11:30pm or so and we told them they could stop crying and keep playing or go home because they were so tired. We still had a game to finish so we were glad they stopped crying! We were being selfish. The kids needed sleep. Oh well, what the hell! You have to live a little - kids included, right?!

Today my husband and I searched for windows. The big question now is wood, PVC or aluminum! We have a big corner house with many very large windows and about 20 windows in total. The majority of them - and all of the big ones - are single-glass. That's the case in our living room where our thermostat is so we are screwed in terms of heating bills. We have to get double-glass. We have no choice. As our house is from 1912-ish and has a prominent place on the corner and has so many windows, it really deserves to have wood window frames like it has now - but that means re-painting them every five years or so, which is a HUGE job! PVC of course would be the most financially sane choice - white PVC at that. But no way!!! No white windows. So there are many other more expensive and better looking PVC window frames - but I don't know - it just doesn't go with the house style. Then there is aluminum, which is cold and modern mostly you'd think. We saw a beautiful example of it on an old home like ours and it actually looked pretty good. But it is really expensive! No matter what, we'll get a lot of subsidies for putting double-glass in as it is so much better for energy use and the like. Even so, can you even begin to imagine what the total costs will be for 20 new windows with so many of them being large ones? Plus there is the glass door and the garage door and the shutters. So we will get a lot of offers and compare the three types and we'll make a decision once we know what is feasible. I can't wait to see what our house looks like down the line when we complete all this renovation work and get the facade cleaned as well. I think the house will be magnificent. But man do we need to win the lottery fast!

Last but not least, I leave you with this small article from my favorite "news" source, The Onion. Playing the Devil's Advocate is something we (un)fortunately like to do sometimes just to make conversations more interesting and to stir stuff up and yes, to get people thinking and seeing alternatives too - so I am sure we all can relate to the idea that Devil's Advocate is very easily and often a synonym for asshole! Man I love The Onion! My dream job - working for The Onion!

Man Who Plays Devil's Advocate Really Just Wants To Be Asshole
March 9, 2007
Issue 43•10

COLUMBUS, MO—Though area graphic designer Derek Sills says he plays devil's advocate to help his friends better understand opinions different from their own, sources close to Sills claim he takes on the dissenting role merely to be an asshole.
"Now, I don't actually believe this or anything but, for the sake of argument, let's say your girlfriend is just dating you for your money," Sills said at a party last Saturday, after asking a group of friends to consider that the telephone may have been a "stupid invention." "Just playing devil's advocate here, guys, but perhaps slavery is the reason African Americans are so successful in sports these days."
According to sources, Sills "crossed the line" when he asked if their friend Jamie's mother might have deserved to die.

And here's a link to another funny one - especially if like me, you were/are a big Led Zeppelin/Jimmy Page fan.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Friday 09 March 2007: Sarah actually won't see Heidi today so here's Heidi a year ago. Sarah has less hair on her eyebrows and Heidi on her head...

Sarah says: (another long entry I'm afraid...You'll miss these long ones when they are gone!)
Five minutes before I took this photo, I had my eyebrows plucked - hence the swelling and redness. I continue to wonder if contact lenses will correct that wandering eye of mine just as my glasses do. I really want to get lenses - not for everyday wear but for sometimes - just to have an alternative to glasses. My daughter cried when I told her I might get lenses. She said I look mean without glasses - that she'd be scared of me. From the mouths of babes! But I don't care what she says - one of these days I will at least try out lenses for a week. If they correct my lopsided eyeball, great - I'm sure I'll love them. If they don't, then I'll stick with glasses.

As for my eyebrows, well one day maybe I'll let them grow back in just to show you what a difference a good eyebrow job can make to a face. Basically I was bordering on uni-brow before. I am a hairy beast - just look at my head-hair - and I get it thinned every few months - yet still it can get huge if I let it. My eyebrows can do the same. Maybe I'll scan an old photo when my eyebrows were like two fat caterpillars.

I also had my chin hairs plucked! Yep - I get chin hairs I hate to admit. I think chin hairs are the biggest evil that my body offers up to me - almost worse than my back for all those years! I mean there is such maintenance involved in dealing with chin hairs. It is an everyday event on my face. Something I can't overlook even one day. If I let it go, I could grow a beard I bet! Of course I never let it go long enough to find out! And even with the high-maintenance, in place of the hairs, I get red spots and swelling so I almost never have a clean chin. You might think I have acne, but no! Those spots are generally related to hairs gone wrong. Isn't that sad? Doesn't that suck? I know I probably should leave this kind of info out of such a blog - but I'd like to take this little step to remove the shame from this. I can't help it that I am prone to such things. It's in my genes. All I can do is grin and bear it (and bare it!) and maintain it. I think when I am 40 I will throw myself a chin-hair birthday party and ask that everyone contributes to laser-hair removal surgery for me. That sort of treatment is expensive - it would cost me about Euro 2500 at least -to begin! I can't spend that kind of money on such a thing no matter how vain I am! So start saving for my chin-hair removal fund everyone! You have less than 5 years as I'll be 36 this year. I think I'd choose chin-hair removal surgery over eye-sight correction surgery - but this gives me a good 4 more years to decide!

Anyone else - female!!! - out there with a chin-hair problem? C'mon! Leave a comment. Don't be ashamed of it! You can't help it. Tell me what you do to deal with the suckers!!! And all the rest of y'all who see women with acne-like stuff only on their chins, think twice - it might just be ingrown chin-hairs or too much plucking action.

See what you can learn here at Face the Day?

Speaking of vanity - I was told again today that I have gotten fatter again! Hear it here and now - I KNOW I HAVE GOTTEN FATTER AGAIN!!! It's not necessary to tell me! I am well aware of it! My pants and shirts tell me it every day. And I'm okay with it. It's temporary. I'll start starving myself again once I go back to real-life and real-hours. (haha - don't worry, I never actually starve myself or get dangerous - I just seriously cut back as best I can) And then guess what - I'll start gaining weight again for some reason. And then, guess what, I'll start eating much less again. And then guess what, I'll start gaining again! And so it goes and so it goes for so so many of us I'm afraid! And I have to be a good example to my kid! Ha!

All right - enough about me and vanity - I won't see Heidi today for once so I offer you the below photo of her from last year on this date. Notice how short her hair was! I guess she was pregnant already then. I think we were fighting that week - or pretending to. Heidi and I have never had a fight I think - thankfully! I'll miss her this weekend. Won't see her at all. We'll hear what she got up to on Monday I hope. Have a good weekend Heidi and the rest of you!

oh - one last thing (as usual) - check this article out if you or your partner is a snorer! I rarely get a good sleep when my husband snores so I get him back by coughing (haha). The article says that if you share a room with a snorer, you lose 2 hours of sleep a night basically - which adds up to losing two years sleep in your lifetime! I knew it! I am always exhausted after a big night of listening to snoring. It can drive me mad at night. My husband can't help it. I know that. I have to put up with it. I have tried ear-plugs but they have not worked so far or have given me a headache or ear-ringing. It's too bad. Any solutions out there? Luckily I seem to need a lot less sleep than my husband does so I survive it. This article explains why some people really can do fine with less sleep.

And finally - I can't believe I was so in love with Eddie Van Halen when I was a teenager. I wore a Van Halen necklace everyday starting at age 12 I think. I took a picture of Eddie Van Halen to the hairdressers back then and asked them to feather my hair like Eddie's. I had a Van Halen thingy painted on my jean jacket as you can see below (photos taken last year at Heidi's and my 1980's night in honor of last Freaks & Geeks episode). I was jealous of Valerie Bertinelli - his then wife. One day I'll scan my year book photo from the 8th grade and show you my Van Halen look for real. Anyway, this article shows you what poor Eddie Van Halen is up to right now - top People Magazine story today!

Me, Heidi and Nico get as 80s as we can (last year). As I did when I was 12, I tried my best to look like Eddie Van Halen. See, I have always wanted to be a rock star and a male rock star at that - hence the growing my weenie comment yesterday as I'll be starting to sing again really soon-yippy!