Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Tuesday 30 June 2009: Heidi and Sarah are one day away from being officially unemployed...

Sarah says:
Last day of work today! I will miss it very much. Next to the work itself, I will miss my colleagues, such as Bruno and Nancy above, and I will miss the office! It's been a great experience and I am very thankful to have had it, even with the ups and downs. Now it is time for the next chapter. Tomorrow Heidi and I will go to the unemployment office. I have never been unemployed before. I wonder how it is going to feel tomorrow! Today was quite okay. A little strange to give in my keys and car and all that and to say goodbye. But it's been 4 months in the working and it's really, really time to move on now... The sun is shining and it is very hot today. That's better than clouds and rain! I'm going with the sun right now!
And I'm going to try to see the world through rose-colored glasses for a while while I can and have time to... This is temporary. I'm really excited to see what I will do next!

Monday 29 June 2009: Heidi and Sarah meet again...

Sarah says:
Here we are together again! You'll see us on here together from time to time! I'm glad Heidi and I live in same neighborhood. It assures we'll see each other around still! :-) We'll be on here again Wednesday the 1st of July as we'll be heading to the unemployment office together. And these are the days of our lives.... :-)

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Saturday and Sunday 27 and 28 June 2009: Sarah goes to the Antwerp zoo to see ASG and Kai-Mook!

Sarah says:
I am sweating so much lately - as you can see a good example of in the above photo. Is it just hot around here or is it me????!!!! I have been having really nice days lately. Good pace. Truly feels like vacation! I intend to enjoy these days as they won't last forever! Tom is now on vacation too and we are riding our bikes all around and hanging about. No rushing. Did some shopping today, which is always good! It all feels right. Time is a gift right now!

That's me and ASG above at the Antwerp zoo yesterday the 27th of June. It was a nice, long day in Antwerp and we got to see the new baby elephant Kai-Mook, which made my kid very happy. We met up with ASG and went to the zoo. Then we went to a very boring and disappointing Fashion museum in Antwerp - the Momu. Antwerp has all this hype as the fashion city but the fashion museum is pathetic. I recommend it to no one!!! Before we went we had a fantastic and BIG lunch at Wagamama. Now that I recommend to everyone! It was such a treat!!

That's Kai-Mook above!
Below is my Post Secret pick-of-the-week. Last week there weren't any at all that caught my eye. This week I chose the one below because I am thinking about my activities of the last two years and of how they are coming to en end as of next Tuesday. As much of a shame it is that a lot of things and people are going to disappear from my life soon that have been part of it for the last two years and also for many years before that -- well, I have to keep reminding myself that just because this chapter of my life is stopping - of my career, experience, contacts, etc... - that it doesn't mean it wasn't worth a lot, because it was. It was worth so much. Just what I learned and did in the last couple of years is invaluable. I will be forever thankful for this experience and opportunity. It's taught me so much. I WILL miss it when it is all gone but I will use so much of what I have learned in future jobs and experiences I am sure. It is time to move on and move on I will. I have had plenty of time to reflect and some of it was really hard but I'm at a good place with it all in my head now and all the negative is slowly going away and I'm planning to walk away proud of the last two years and am ready to embrace what's coming next, whatever it might be... Time will tell...

Friday, June 26, 2009

Thursday 25 and Friday 26 June 2009: New dresses, old Christma trees and too much tan... These are the days of Sarah....

Sarah says:
That's my new top/dress in the photo above. I bought it yesterday. Just couldn't resist! It's comfy and has a nice shape! I can wait till the sales! I want summer stuff! I am in a shopping mood, that's for sure! Dangerous!
There above you can see Tomske and me surrounded by silver and gold Christmas trees! Don't even ask why! Let's just say as it was just the 1st day of summer and the days are getting shorter and shorter as of now, well we are getting ready for Christmas! We also bought several large wine racks today along with 4 big storage boxes and 3 big garbage cans. What are we up to?

The photo above is from yesterday the 25th of June. Can you say too much tan? I had mammogram yesterday morning. All clear! It wasn't pleasant. That's for sure. They used a new and improved machine - better than the one they had 2 years ago - but it was not easy to twist my shoulder the way they needed me to and we had to re-do one side a few times. But all is okay so I am glad about that!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Sarah says:
Happy Birthday Noah! Have a great day! Ayla color-coordinated the message you see above with her outfit because she's cool like that!
There above you can see me and Ayla yesterday on our bikes on the way home from her school. I am starting to feel okay about the idea of not having a car for the summer. I am really enjoying this bike thing other than for the fact that my back hurts a bit everyday from it I think - just where it used to hurt. But I have the feeling it's really okay and I am taking it slowly just in case. If I can build up slowly and then start with some light belly crunches and stuff to get strong I should be okay...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Tuesday 23 June 2009: Sarah has a "ball"...

Sarah says:
Always fun to have a new prop to get a new photo in and then to overuse the effect with 3 photos instead of just one... The above ball was at Valerie's house where I went for lunch today. It was sunny outside with good food and conversation and it was very relaxed - so you see, I am still very much in relaxing-mode and indeed still enjoying it! I look like a weird beast in the above photo. I like it!
There above you can see me and Fre, Valerie's son. I was very happy to se him. Without fail he reminds me of Peter because he looks so much like him and it's always nice to think about Peter.

And there you can see me with Valerie, the cook, in her garden in her silver ball thingy! Very nice to see her and Fre and Tom today. This is the life!
By the way, I HAVE TO mention that I finally watched the movie Coming Home last night after having received the DVD from my brother years ago. I never got around to watching it and I am happy that finally I have!!! It is a great movie - just as my brother said it would be. Heart-breaking, well-acted and with a clear message. Jon Voight (Angelina's father) and Jane Fonda were quite amazing in this film as actors and boy were they both terribly beautiful. I highly recommend it and am sorry it took me this long to be able to say I watched it! But it was certainly very well worth the wait! Thanks for sending it all those year ago NSM!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Heidi's weekend



Monday 22 June 2009: Heidi and Sarah take advantage of their newfound free time and have coffee, soup and a stroll through the Monday market ...

Sarah says:
Monday market in Kortrijk this morning with Heidi meant two cups of coffee and running into other "free" friends. The sun was shining and we took a stroll through the market. I bought roasted chicken and potatoes as well as broccoli and strawberries. The best part for me was that I went by bike to the city in place of by car. I am really trying to get over my fear of biking and over my fear of back pain from biking and I am doing so-far-so-good! It's really enjoyable! Heidi and I also stopped for some soup for lunch. Then I went home on bike and dropped stuff off and then went to the grocery store on bike and bought a cake and went to see some other friends. I know this freedom won't last but I really am trying to enjoy it while I can because indeed what everyone says is true - you have to enjoy it while you can and not feel guilty about it! I am truly trying! As for the biking, as silly and even pathetic as it sounds, I feel SUPER HAPPY that I am riding around. It's the most normal thing but I have been afraid. I have been waking up with pain right where my protheses is every day after I have biked and I don't like that at all but I'm going to just keep it up and see what happens. Maybe it's just pain from moving different muscles or something. Can't wait to pick up Ayla from school soon on the bike because it means biking together, which is making her so happy these days too - and it means getting her earlier from school than usual because I am home early. That means more time together. That means we are both more relaxed. That means we have a calm home and calm heads. I will enjoy this while it lasts... because I know it will be short-lived. I'm okay with that as long as I get this time now...
Heidi was very happy to see that the Koffie Queen now serves decaf!

Today we are on a liquid diet! Good soup! Great oranges. Nice morning.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Saturday and Sunday 20 and 21 June 2009: The weekend...

Sarah says:
It's Sunday the 21st of June - the 1st day of summer in fact and father's day in America. I am soooooooooooo tired. I think I will do the rare thing and take a nap this afternoon when my kid is at her youth group. My head is pounding for some reason. It feels like it will explode.
Above is a photo from yesterday the 20th of June. Spent most of the day in Kortrijk at the outdoor market-like thingy and got some good bargains! Watched the last episode of Deadwood season 1 and just love that show more than ever.

The photo above is from Friday nigh the 19th of June. It's so seldom that I wear my hair up that I thought it a good idea to include such a photo just for variety-sake!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Thursday and Friday 18 and 19 June 2009: Sunny days - the clouds are lifting...

Sarah says:
Above photo is from today - thank-god-it's Friday - the 19th of June. Fake tanning and growing my hair out is doing me well I think!
Above is from yesterday the 18th. Had a nice day busy in the morning and with friends in the afternoon with good food and fun. Riding my bike around a bit more which feels great!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Veggie thursday 18 june 2009: Heidi is alive!!!!!!!

Heidi says: no no, not dead yet! I am enjoying my time off from work, doing things at home i needed to do but never found the time to do! the reason why you don't find me a lot on the internet is this stupid computer!!! it's really bad for my nerves... really bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Wednesday 17 June 2009: The sun is still shining in Belgium...

Sarah says:
The sun is still shining and that's a good thing here in Belgium! Let it be known that I do not want one single sun burn this summer. I have been using fake tan cream so far and it seems to be working without making me streaky or orange... Amazing how a little fake tan can make you look more awake and alive... I don't really enjoy sitting in the sun like I did in the past. I seek shade. Don't get me wrong - I don't run from the sun but I just can't sit under it trying to get some color anymore. It's always too hot! Viva fake tanning cream!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Monday 15 June 2009: Sarah does not think it is thrilling to not know what comes next...

Sarah says:
Enjoyed this morning talking about America to a group of students at local college. Then I met an old friend and we had sandwiches and pie together and a long chat. Now I am at home in the middle of the day wondering what I should do now. My choices are - in no particular order - do nothing, putz around on the computer more, clean something up, organize some pile, keep reading book, watch aimless TV, sleep, call someone, write, eat snacks and not because I am hungry, search for jobs on internet, make lists, practice photoshopping and stuff like that... None of those things appeals to me. Maybe the reading the book part does. Anyway, what I will do is search for jobs for the next 15 minutes on the 5 usual sites. Then I will go upstairs to the living room and clean up the several piles of papers and junk that have it all messy up there. Then I will indeed continue the little lving room clean up with music blasting. Then it will be time to pick up my daughter. So the time will pass and so will the day. If each day I can do something that feeds my head and soul a bit I think I'll be okay. I really enjoyed preparing for giving the lesson today. I dove into Obama-mania and read, read and read and feel very up-to-date on American matters. It was fun being around students too. Made me feel good and alive.
Above you can see my Post Secret pick of he week, which I picked for obvious reasons that have nothing to do with death and everything to do with my looming unemployment and with what happens next. I like to know what's coming up. I like agendas and planning. Not always of course - I do know how to be lazy and relax and have no plans and to change plans and all but in general, I like to have at least some idea of what is around the corner... I gues I'll learn how to better deal with the unknown it the following weeks! A good lesson to learn in fact so I will try to embrace it!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Saturday and Sunday 13 and 14 June 2009: Sarah says bye to Tomske who is off to NYC for a few days... While the cat's away...

Sarah says:
It's early and I am up when I should and could be sleeping late! Tomske is off to NYC for work for a few days and I woke up to see him off. I'll miss him! I like alone time and all but these are strange days and I'm not sure alone time is what I need! Yesterday morning I broke down a bit. Finally after all these months the floodgates opened big time! It just needed to happen. I feel a lot better for it! I'm going to go upstairs in a second and read in bed for a while. Just relax! Today I have to prepare for tomorrow a bit but other than that I am kind of free as a bird. Ayla has exams and I have to help her practice a bit. A little cleaning up to do too... But basically - not that much on my plate this week! Should be interesting...
That's me and Ayla above from yesterday, Saturday the 13th of June. We celebrated Ayla's cousin Arne's birthday and father's day with Tom's family. There was a fashion show and lots of good food and plenty of sunshine! Below you can see Arne, Ayla and me having some fun together. Those kids sure know how to keep themselves busy. In their fashion show, Ayla used her new blue skirt as a head-piece, a shirt, a dress, a skirt. They are very creative. It's nice to see. They are both without brothers and sisters so it's great they have a nice bond with each other.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Thursday 11 June 2009 continued and Friday 12 June 2009: Heidi and Sarah face tomorrow and perhaps it will be full of roses and color!

Heidi says: too much alcohol on katrijn her birthday? Someone at haircutting school did something so nice for katrijn: she baked cakes and brought wine to celebrate her birthay. very very sweet!!!!!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY KATRIJN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sarah says:
That's me today the 12th of June above. Can you guess who is missing in that photo? The empty chair is of course symbolic as I am sure you can see! But it's SUNNY in Belgium so everything looks bright and relief and closure are setting in! It's going to be a nice weekend!

That's my daughter above and below this morning showing off her new outfit. She would not stop talking about it - for two days already. She has the obsessive gene I am sure! I love the above photo. It's so full of joy!

That's me and Heidi yesterday the 11th again. We said goodbye at work as it was Heidi's last day and then I saw her two more times that evening so I don't think we have much to worry about in terms of staying in touch if that's a signal! Today we sent text messages a few times too! The contact might die down a bit but I think we are bonded by shared experience. Heidi rang my door saying I had to grab my camera so we could have a photo under the sign you see above. Basically, it says 'Don't worry about tomorrow". I can see it out most of the windows of my house all the time. It's like meant to be there as a message to me! And to Heidi! Very timely and funny and churchy...

I love the above photo from yesterday. For a few weeks we get these wonderful roses on our street in the garden of the Unie der zorgelozen. Doesn't Heidi look like she adores me in that photo?! Thanks for the roses Heidi!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Wednesday and Thursday 10 and 11 June 2009: Heidi's last day and what about Face The Day???

Sarah says:
I won't recap what I wrote a couple of days ago about my and Heidi's no longer working together and seeing each other almost daily for 8 freaking years but suffice it to say that today feels very strange and sad in so many ways. But the future is what matters now! It's a big we'll see for both Heidi and me and for Face The Day!

Heidi says:
we'll see :)

That's me above on Wednesday the 10th of June. I had a busy morning than a fun afternoon shopping with a friend in Lille...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Wednesday 10 June 2009

Heidi says: Sofie payed me a visit today! It was very nice! She found a new job and we wish her all the best with it!
Heidi says: obviously getting older... well, I'm 30 so I guess it's normal...

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Tuesday 09 June 2009: Heidi and Sarah are coming closer to the end of their Heidi and Sarah show! What will happen to Face The Day???????

Sarah says:
Your guess is as good as ours! Hopefully Heidi and I will still see each other from time to time and Sarah will keep in the habit of always having her camera with her to snap a shot when she runs into Heidi. This is a weird time. Part of our losing our jobs together means that the daily contact we have had since around September 2001 will be coming to an end and that certainly will have an effect on Face The Day. We'll see how it goes! I'm so computer bound that you'll probably continue to see my dumb head on here each day or so. I hope Heidi will appear frequently as well... I'll miss her when she's gone! I am so used to seeing her so often. I hope we stay in touch. The idea of not staying in touch troubles me... Once again - we'll see how this all goes.... We became friends about 8 years ago through work and started up and closed this office together. It's been intense at times. I can't wait to see what we do next and whatever it is I can't say enough that I truly hope our paths continue to cross and that we go to Kortrijk for soup still sometimes and to The Ring for coffee and that we exchange music and DVDs and dumb, repetitive jokes and that our kids play together sometimes and that we meet and play games again one day and and and and... that we meet on Face The Day every now and then... and that we all live happily ever after... despite the ups and downs...

Monday, June 08, 2009

Monday 08 June 2009: droopy eye = Sarah needs some sleep!!!

Sarah says:
Insomnia = big time droopy eye! There are also circles under my eyes. I hope I can sleep tonight...

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Saturday and Sunday 06 and 07 June 2009: Sarah has a pretty okay weekend and so has Heidi (see bottom)!

Sarah says:
No idea why the photo above refuses to turn around but so be it! Must be a reflection of my state of mind today! I have been cleaning out closets -- mostly of my daughter's full of too small clothes. It takes so much time! Yesterday I did the same at the office for about 4 hours! Thankfully my husband helped because frankly it was quite overwhelming. My back is none the better for it! All that bending and sitting on the floor sorting through stuff and picking up and putting down... The closet cleaning today is far easier than that of yesterday. Yesterday was figurative closet cleaning as well. Letting go. Breaking down what we built up. Can't say it felt good though at this stage it did feel like progress. Made the reality of the whole situation quite clear, which probably means I took a few more essential steps in moving on and forward...

Though there was a lot of closet work yesterday - the 6th of June - I still look happy in above photo. I had a good day and a good weekend. Friday night was fun with a few good girlfriends of mine and good food. I love cooking and haveing people at my house so it was a nice night. And Saturday had a good pace about it. My husband helped me so much with cleaning up the office. It made me feel so bonded to him and supported by him. We worked away quietly and sort of peacefully with some nice conversations in between. Having him there made me feel okay. If I had done it alone I think it would have been awful. It just gave me some more perspective on what is important in life... My job situation might suck a bit right now but my family life is good and that is very essential to my well-being.

I'm sorry for the non-positive Post Secret above! I could relate to it though! I don't agree that life is all about long suffering and all that - not at all. But I am very aware that you suffer then you don't and then you do and then you don't and happiness comes rushing in often just when you need it and suffering comes in just when you don't. Life works itself our rather well most of the time. It does help me to know that whenever I am sad or under the weather or feel like I am suffering that I also know that something good is always around the corner too!
Saturday 6 June 2009: Yma's party at school

Sunday 7 June 2009: a nice day out (though ashamed to be flemish)
We voted today. Flanders appears to be quite right-wing as opposed to Wallonia. I feel ashamed of Flanders. How did we become so selfish? I also start to wonder why Flanders and Wallonia all have their own red and green and blue... parties? Why not have one bilingual party per colour? Then at least Belgium would have chosen a lot greener and a lot less right-wing!

To end this post a bit more positive, here's a little movie to get to know Yma a bit better. She's a bit nuts! :-)