Monday, September 26, 2011

A character

After trying to take a creepy stalker shot of this man, I just asked him if I could take his photo. 
"Of course," he said, very matter-of-fact.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Walrus of Love In Amsterdam

For my family especially:
At the Uit Markt, one of the prestigious Dutch orchestras was playing a Barry White song. It was so unexpected that when I first heard it I started grinning... and then they repeated the song at least 4 times! Which was kind of puzzling. But great. Because who doesn't love a little jazzy Barry White to swing along to?

Friday, September 23, 2011


Poffertjes (translation = heaven) at the Uit Markt festival with butter, powdered sugar, Sophia, and Eli.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Uit Markt

Next up:
A series of posts about the Uit Markt festival from the 26-29th of August.

 The Uit Markt is "the official opening event of the new cultural season. The Uitmarkt is an annual fixture in Amsterdam's cultural calendar... it draws around 500,000 visitors each year- visitors who are interested in arts and culture in every shape and form. The Uitmarkt reflects all aspects of Dutch cultural life and focuses on what will be offered on Dutch stages and in Dutch museums in the coming cultural season."

Despite the sporadic rain, I had an awesome time exploring the festival with Sophia, Eli, and James. Most of the events took place at Museumplein. I ate a yummy fried ham sandwich (broodjes), some delicious poffertjes, and saw some great music and DANCE!

Public Peeing


Walking the lovely streets of Amsterdam you often come across equally as lovely public places of urination. Doesn't "urinoir" just sound so French and upscale? There are lots of public urinals sprinkled around the city (pun intended).

Example A:                                                                             Example B:

For Angela Hollar

A post sans real content.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Il Cibo. I would say "food" in Dutch, but I don't know how...

French toast that I made with whole wheat bread, stroop, aardbei, and raspeberry-pomegranate juice. Even better when made with brioche :)
FOOD. IL CIBO. FOOD IN DUTCH. (Yes, I could look it up, but how authentic would that be?) Anyway, is there anything better? No. So I'll share some of the delicious things I've been eating/cooking up. First of all, I've been told several times by native Dutch that the native Dutch food isn't much to speak of, and that it mostly consists of meat, potatoes, and vegetables... heartier dishes. Living in an apartment with a non-Dutch person does not make it easy for me to sample Dutch cuisine. Instead, I've had Indonesian, which Amsterdam is known for, possibly more than the native cuisine. I had never had Indonesian before and was expecting it to be spicy. Unfortunately, it was not, but it was pretty tasty... kind of similar to (American) Chinese food, but less greasy. Amsterdam/Holland is also known for fries with mayonnaise (mmm fries, yuuuck mayonnaise for me), herring (no thank you), stroopwafels (yummy wafers with syrupy sweetness smooshed inside), and pannenkoken (pancakes- so good), and pofferjes (mini pancakes- also the background of this blog).

I can now also add to my Dutch vocabulary things that I can recognize by frequenting the grocery store, restaurants, and the two gelato shops near my apartment (framboos = raspberry. appelsap = apple juice. sinnasappel = orange. caneel = cinnamon. knoflook = garlic... isn't this a weird one?!). I am also proud to say that I could understand everything on this extremely hard to understand specials menu board: pannenkoek = pancakes. aardbei = strawberries. slagroom = whipped cream. chocoladetaart = chocolate tart. appeltaart = apple tart. cheesecake = cheescake (this one was the most challenging for me).

Note to those Rome girls out there: no, the gelato is not quite as good as Giolitti. But it's still pretty good, and also 2 euro. The slagroom is sweeter than the panna of Italian gelato- more like American whip cream, but even better. And... they have Strongbow here! Yum.


 I've made some dishes myself, too: insalata caprese (my go-to dish for anything and everything), lots of rice stir-frys (nice to meet you, tofu, it's a pleasure working with you), pasta dishes, and risotto con pollo (ok, well I didn't cook this one, but I watched and took pictures as the amazing Hannah expertly whipped it up. Go check out the recipe on her blog.)

Ok. I that know you all know and love Nutella. But being allergic to nuts these past few years has seriously inhibited my life satisfaction. I mean, how could I have been in Europe/Rome and not indulged in it?! But I couldn't. UNTIL NOW. Check this baby out.

Pure heaven? You'll just have to come and try it. This is pure chocolate spread. Milk chocolate. Also in dark chocolate (even better). Ridiculous. All without any nuts! The Dutch are geniuses. Basically, my old Nutella-like chocolate spread relationship is back on, after a 7 year hiatus. I will forever be indebted to Miss Angie and the Greens for first introducing me to Nutella as a kid, and to Holland for giving me a nut free version. Oh baby.

And just when I thought it couldn't get any better, I saw this little baby in the grocery store. If you know me well, you also know that I am obsessed with those delicious Biscoff cookies you can get on Delta flights (Walgreens in South Bend too, it turns out). My dad always saves them for me when he takes a Delta flight. Well, little did I know, but they are originally Dutch! They are called speculoos. I first discovered this by looking at the website (yup... that obsessed). And that website told me about speculoos spread that I found. ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?! Was my first thought. And then I found it. It tastes exactly like the cookie, but in spreadable form. An amazing feat.

And spread on a pain au chocolat? Don't mind if I do.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Crowd Personalities: A Photo Story

At the parade there were also a lot of interesting people walking along the canal. I love photographing regular people out on the streets- some have such a unique style! [ Makes me feel a bit like an amateur version of The Sartorialist :) ]

P.S. At least on my web browser, the quality of my photos seems to be decreased when published on here... rrrr... if you could only see the real beauty of them...
Hangin' out of the windows.
To give you an idea of just how crowded the streets were!
boho + preppy
Oh hey! I found some buff Scottish relatives over here.
The father and daughter standing next to me during the parade.
rainbowed out
silver sequin dress + pink
Somehow this guy reminds me of Kermit.
pink boas
Nice colors. PLUS, did you see that thing on his head?! I'm not even sure I saw it when I took this photo.
time wrapped up in pearls
Attractive man confident enough to wear a baby out in public... you know I can't resist.
I thought this was a hilarious festival sight: boats on the canal that sell alcohol to passing party boats- handing money and wine bottles to one another precariously over the water!
the end

--> Who's your favorite? <--

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Amsterdam Gay Pride Parade

The very first weekend I was here, Amsterdam had its famous Gay Pride Festival. What's especially awesome about their parade is that it's done on the canals, so the "floats" are actually floats! It was great to see the city come alive with a festival in the first couple of days I was here. Yes, it was crazy, and yes, there were some absolutely hilarious outfits! But the best thing was that so many people- gay, straight, teenagers, adults, kids, families- participated and watched from the streets, piled on top of strangers' front stoops, or hung out of windows along the canal. It was a fun atmosphere to be in. And in the end? It's just all about love!

Floats with awesome messages:

The postal service... clever with the barcode, no?

"I can be myself at work"- Company Pride Platform

10 years of marriage between two men/two women in the Netherlands! And the institution of marriage hasn't come crashing down over here!... shocking...

Gay & straight play rugby. Interesting.

Rainbows and different country flags

"Poz & Proud: gay men with HIV"

UvA Pride: University of Amsterdam float. How scholarly they all look. Ha!


Totally ridiculous! The "Amsterdam Musketeers: All for guys! Guys for all!" Hilarious.


"Christian and gay"

"Oh, happy gay!" Haha.

Psychiatric and Addiction Care: "Away With Stigmas," "No Drugs, Still Crazy!"

"addicted to LOVE"