Happy birthday, Otto! We love you!
Tuesday, April 19, 2016
Max played this the day we went to the El Ten Eleven concert, and I meant to post it then, but...here it is, just so I have it here for future reference. We posted it to the El Ten Eleven Facebook page and were totally thrilled with Kristian Dunn responded with: "I kind of like his version better than ours!" We were delighted that they even watched it.
And of course, it was an amazing concert. We got to meet them after the show, we got all sorts of swag, including t-shirts for both boys, camping mugs, and 3 of their albums in vinyl (one of them that was just thrown in as a gift from the tour manager). We took Max's loop pedal with us (since it was really because of them that he even wanted one), and Kristian signed it for him. We were obviously all over the moon about them.
Monday, April 18, 2016
Sunday, January 10, 2016
Sunday, November 15, 2015
David loaned us his loop pedal (and amplifier), and Max has had a really good time experimenting with it. Last night, he was really in a groove, and it was so much fun to watch him putting it together that I thought I should document it. He is usually not a fan of being recorded, but he gave the go-ahead for this one, which must mean he feels good about it. We thought it was pretty cool too.
Apologies for the very dark room (and the constant refocusing of the camera—it didn't like the lighting either, I guess, and kept trying to adjust). But of course, the music doesn't care how it looks. Also, apologies to the downstairs neighbors. It was a bit late when he was feeling so inspired.
Monday, October 12, 2015
Thursday, June 18, 2015
Friday, May 29, 2015
One quick night in London before we head to Gerrards Cross to visit our friends. We loved traveling on the Eurostar!
Might be the best Indian food we've ever had at Bengal Tiger.
London at night (by Max):
Mr. Sugar at the museum (by Otto):
Spent the day at the Tate Modern.
Otto and Ellsworth Kelly like similar color combinations.
Of course we had to walk the Millennium (aka Harry Potter) Bridge:
Still reading Tin Tin:
Friday, May 8, 2015
En route to Brussels (stop in Köln).
At the hotel in Brussel, considering options.
Our adorable hotel room.
Bela (an old friend of Martin's) lives in Brussels now with her 18-year old son Vincent (the last time I saw him he was about 1 year old!).
Drinks and snacks in the late afternoon sun.
The Grand Place.
Le Pain Quotidien. Our first visit there (but it was not our last).
There is a whole series of "Comic Book Walls" throughout the city. We tried to find as many as we could as we walked around, but we were especially keyed in to find the Tin Tin (Hergé walls. So many of the comic strips have that similar style, and Martin was familiar with many of the artists (he has a pretty big comic book collection at home), but Tin Tin is the one our kids are most familiar with, so we were on the lookout for art by Hergé. Look! Here's one!
Not Hergé, but does feature both kids.
Otto did a whole series of photos with a character he made while we were still in Germany. He called him Mr. Sugar. He took photos of various sites that are mostly blurred out behind this little sugar cube. I came to prefer the shots of Mr. Sugar with a blurry mural behind him to any of the actual mural shots I took.
Best fritjes we had in Brussels were from this small stand. We were the only customers, and our cook carefully fried them to perfection, salted them with little restraint, and served them up perfectly golden and delicious.
Inside the Atomium.
The escalators and staircases were so beautiful, and each extension was different. Martin called this one the entrance to Dr. No's secret lair.
There was an exhibit featuring so many things in the orange and yellow plastics of the 70s.
Back in the city.
The next morning, we took a (very!) long walk to Bela's studio. We made the mistake of walking a different way (wanting some variety) than we had previously, and not eating breakfast before we left for the morning, so everyone was a bit cranky and hungry upon arrival (we didn't find a suitable breakfast stop along our hour+ walk), so Bela sent us right out to one of her favorite spots around the corner. Then we came back for a little tour of her studio.
The weekly flea market is not far from her studio and is a lively way to spend a sunny morning.
Mr. Sugar met up with a distant relative.
Tour of chocolate (how did we not start this from day one?). We realized that although we didn't ant to buy an entire box of this very fancy and expensive chocolate, there was no reason we couldn't go into each amazing shop after amazing shop and each pick out a single piece to savor and rate.
Here's the selection from one store (sorry for the poor lighting). The one in my hand (with the red on top) was truly the best piece of chocolate and/or candy I have ever eaten in my entire life.
We felt we had to check out a Brussels skate shop to see what it was like.
We met for an afternoon drink with Benoit and Bela at the bar around the corner from their apartment (and where they are regulars). It was fun to see everyone greet them, and to notice how many other friends of theirs walked through the square as we sat there talking and drinking.
Quick stop at their apartment (fun to see how they are living there, especially since they are both artists and have such a great aesthetic).
They took us out for delicious pizza at another of their favorite spots.
The next morning was our last in Brussels. We finally made it to the Musical Instrument Museum, the one museum we had on our "definite to do" list. It was so wonderful, and we felt we rushed through it, even though we had given it far more than the suggested time. We are always slow through these things, but in a musical instruments museum, we should have known to give ourselves double time. It was so cool: you could get an app that had an audio tour through the entire museum. You could listen to a sample of each instrument (and there were hundreds of them). There were some really unusual instruments, and some really unusual tracks to accompany them.
A couple of last images of Tin Tin as we wrapped up our visit.
Taking a little bit of Brussels with us on our way to England.
Almost Always Hungry