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Holiday report

31 August, 2005 at 12:59 pm by belgianwaffle

The House

Very attractive
Beautiful garden
Very happy until Thursday when it started to rain and continued to do so largely non-stop for the remainder of our visit. Realised house was damp and small. Garden was wet.

The Place
Le Crotoy is a small resort on the north coast of France which enjoyed its heyday about a century ago. Lots of faded grandeur. There was a flying school. It had to close down in the early 1900s when a “careless pedestrian” was beheaded by a plane. Apparently the Caudron is a type of plane developped by the flying brothers and much used in World War I. Jules Verne liked the place and spent a number of years there. It is where he wrote “20,000 Leagues under the Sea”. This is a little ironic as to actually get deeper than a foot under water in the baie de la Somme you need to wade to England. This was my first ever beach holiday where I didn’t swim. Just too far away to walk.  Other little Le Crotoy factlet: the parfumier Pierre Guerlain was a local boy and he built a big hotel called Les Tourelles which he hoped that his patron the Empress Eugenie would visit for her Summer holidays but she went to Biarritz instead and poor old Le Crotoy’s doom
was sealed. Les Tourelles is now owned by lots of Belgians
(including, bizarrely, my gynaecologist) and impossible to book for dinner. The whole place is full of Belgians. To my intense delight I was taken for a Belgian in a local shop. On
emerging from our rented accommodation one day, the Princess pointed to the little boy from next door and said “Matteo”. His Da looked at Mr. Waffle a bit oddly and the latter explained “my little girl thinks your little boy is called Matteo”. “But he IS called Matteo”. It emerged that they knew each other from the creche. Being little Belgians the infants took this meeting in their stride, exchanged kisses and suggested to their fathers that it was time that they moved on.


Haircut for the Princess and myself. She sat entirely composed through her first haircut and pronounced herself pleased with the result. I, on the other hand, was crushed, apart from the usual haircut disaster, the woman asked whether we were staying in the local campsite. I went camping with my parents for years, I know what people staying in the local campsite look like. General chat confirmed the overwhelming impression that the place was chock full of
Belgians. Indeed Madam commented that she goes on her holidays in February and that she often coincides with the Belgian week on the slopes, so it’s a home from home really.

St. Valéry Sur Somme – neighbouring town visited extensively in the rain. Not good in the rain.

Nausicaa – Big acquarium, lots of fish.

Amiens – Impressive cathedral

Steam train between Le Crotoy and St. Valéry Sur Somme (please see observations on the attractiveness of the latter in the rain).

Beach – immensely popular with the Princess in all weathers

Abbaye des Valloires – did we really pay 15 euros to see gardens? The rain can make you do funny things.

Merry-go-round – lots of.

Sudoku – I’d really rather not comment any further.

Undoubted highlight – the arrival of the royal grandparents for a week. Much rejoicing by the Princess and her parents.
Endless stories for her, nights out for us and a marriage saved. Grandma joined us on crutches with a broken hip – three cheers for Grandma. We were able to rent a wheelchair in the local pharmacy for 16 euros a week. The pharmacist explained apologetically, the charge was as we were not entitled to social security. Isn’t France a wonderful place?

If you have even the mildest interest in other people’s holiday snaps (and why should you, I ask myself?) you may inspect them here.


on 31 August 2005 at 13:42

Gosh she’s growing up so fast!


on 31 August 2005 at 17:17

Ha ha! I love the infantile socialising. Miles ahead of us.


on 31 August 2005 at 17:42

Hello ‘waf. Good to see your time in St. Val?ry Sur Somme hasn’t left you overly damaged.
What’s Sudoku…? 😐


on 01 September 2005 at 10:50

What nasty mean hairdresser. Hmf. Pretty house, though.


on 01 September 2005 at 11:56

Hjb – you personally or just Switzerland?
Norah – yes, weird eh? Thanks for the sweetie.
Sus – well, clearly…
JD – Ask Norah, she started it.
Pog – Pretty, but damp, I fear.


on 01 September 2005 at 13:38

just Switzerland. So it doesn’t really count.


on 02 September 2005 at 08:49

No, not really. I would have thought it would be hard for a landlocked mountainous country to flood, but climate change is exciting for everyone obviously.


on 02 September 2005 at 09:46

Good to see you back. Next year?


on 05 September 2005 at 08:55

Hiya BHM. There will be no holiday next year…

Holiday hiatus

12 August, 2005 at 9:11 pm by belgianwaffle

We are going to the North Sea for a fortnight. During this time there will be no blog updates, unless it is very wet indeed.

In my absence, I leave you with the knowledge that the Princess took in her first film this afternoon (following on the excitement of her first bed on Wednesday) and I spent the morning being used as a pincushion in the lab. I would like ooohs for the former and aahs for the latter.

While I’m away, you may wish to contemplate this picture of her highness demonstrating her didactic streak.


on 14 August 2005 at 17:08

Wow! Ouch! Have a great time


on 14 August 2005 at 17:57

Fantastic ! 😀


on 16 August 2005 at 11:46



on 18 August 2005 at 17:13

Why is her food in her potty?
(keep it tasteful now)


on 19 August 2005 at 20:32


Sarcastic Journalist


on 20 August 2005 at 05:11

“I swear, woman. If you don’t refill this sippy cup soon, I’ll show you a pincushion.”


on 22 August 2005 at 18:28

Not been blogging much Waffly but your posts do keep me entertaned even if I don’t comment. Have a fab holiday.



on 23 August 2005 at 07:14

Oh! I have that bowl! It’s a frog. And it’s from IKEA! Sweetnessss….


on 31 August 2005 at 13:26

Loc, an offering entitled Madagascar… I’m a disappointment to you, I know it.
Minks, Negrito, Pog, ta.
BHM, be good.
SJ, how could you guess exactly what she was saying? You’re a genius.
Thanks Bobble.
IKEA rules the world Kristina. But we knew that..


on 05 September 2005 at 03:43

Something familiar about that pointy finger 🙂
Familiar finger


on 05 September 2005 at 09:08

SUPERB! Thank you.


on 13 September 2005 at 16:42

Well, yes. You are. I forgive you though. Generous soul that I am.


on 14 September 2005 at 10:15

Well, Loc, we will strive to do better.

Shopping and Swimming

10 August, 2005 at 7:31 pm by belgianwaffle

“Fresh Eire”

As hot as Barcelona and as stylish as Paris, but just minutes from Dublin, Dundrum has all the edginess of London high style with the chi-chi boutiques of New York. Welcome to the new style council.”

Excuse me? Dundrum? A distant and dull Dublin suburb whose major claim to fame is that it houses the state’s main asylum for the criminally insane. Stay away.

In other news, we went to Bruxelles-les-bains today.
A slightly odd experience: inspired by a Parisian idea, the Bruxellois import lots of sand, stands and water games along the canal.  Herself loved it.


on 11 August 2005 at 10:28

‘Humdrum Dundrum’ sounds like a better title than ‘Fresh Eire’ then?


on 11 August 2005 at 19:23

LJ, still not good enough for me.
Pog, your way with words is marvellous.


on 12 August 2005 at 10:19

Yup – I’d be a whizz at ‘News of the Screws’ headlines, ay?

IKEA outcomes sorry outputs

9 August, 2005 at 8:30 pm by belgianwaffle

He is building a MALM. What a man. My sister tells me that in Chicago you can order from IKEA on line and pay $100 to have everything delivered.  Why is it America is so much better at this kind of thing?

Tomorrow we build a bed for the Princess. Our lives are just full, full, full of excitement.


on 10 August 2005 at 12:52

I’m sure we’d be reasonably impressed if we just knew what that was – sounds highly futuristic though – any relation to HAL? 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


on 10 August 2005 at 19:34

See neither of you has spent enough time in IKEA. All the furniture is lovingly named in Swedish (except for the Billy bookcase and the Carlos desk) and you should know that the MALM is a chest of drawers. 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


on 11 August 2005 at 10:08

I have. I have spent enough time in IKEA.
*gibbers* 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


on 11 August 2005 at 19:22

Oh no you haven’t and we had to go back today to exchange bed pieces having picked up the wrong ones in our haste last time. Sigh. 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


on 12 August 2005 at 10:18

Really I have. And last time I went with Conchita. Oh god. I need a stiff drink …. the horror, the horror …. 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


on 12 August 2005 at 21:05

That is a funny thought… 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


on 18 August 2005 at 17:15

I LOVE making up Ikea names!
John – Deer
FFart – bathrobe
bollokks – light fitting
It’s great fun. We should start a blog for it! 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


on 31 August 2005 at 13:22

BHM – I entirely agree, though I expect my time to be somewhat limited in the future… 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


on 02 November 2005 at 23:32

PaulBlogtown 0
Sweetie(s) given ���


A man’s work is never done

8 August, 2005 at 9:51 pm by belgianwaffle

Mr. Waffle suggests that this might be called “bash Mr. Waffle entry” but I feel that this is harsh. Particularly since I am very grateful to him.  Poor Mr. Waffle has taken time off work to mind the Princess as the creche is closed and I am on a strict
diet of rest and relaxation. Speaking of diet, I went into my doctor this morning feeling fine and came out diabetic and anaemic. Sigh. Lots of tablets. And no biscuits. I digress.

Anyhow, Mr. Waffle and the Princess have been bonding and he has been very virtuous. And he is exhausted and has departed early to bed.  I on the other hand, despite my various pregnancy related ills (see previous paragraph) am full of beans because I spent the afternoon in bed and not in the

He found this blog recently and referred me to it for my
edification. He suggested that you, yes, you, might be interested. I was puzzled. “How did you come across this?” I asked my beloved. “Oh by googling ‘breast, immodest, women of Satan’, I think, why?”

My husband has become obsessed with Sudoku. I tried to put him off becase I had read Norah’s blog on this matter (can’t find the post, but it was terrifying) and knew that it was dangerous. Eventually, I gave in and got him The Times’s
book of Sudoku. But still all around the house I find sheets of paper with numbers and tippex marks. There is a file on this very computer called “Sudoku grid”. I explained to him that the book is meant to be filled in. “But I don’t like writing in books”. “Well, that is very laudable, my angel, but this book is designed to be written in, think of it as being like the  Princess’s colouring books”. “You let her colour in those? But she goes outside the lines and everything”. Sigh.

Finally, my husband is a list maniac. Everytime I move something, lists shower on me like confetti. And worse, it’s catching. I cannot now shop without a shopping list.  And I have made a twin preparation list. And I keep ticking things on it. Seriously, can you think of anything I’ve forgotten? Yes, I appreciate this is tedious for you, but you do realise that this is all about ME.

Twin list

Bed for Princess? If, yes, sheets blankets etc for same. 1
extra cot or, if we don’t move Princess on to a bed, 2 extra cots.
Sleeping bags for babies More cot bedding/blankets etc.
Worth getting those Moses basket thingies? Leave P. in cot for a while and then move babies on to cots when P. moves to bed, say, at 3 mths?

Lots of babygrows, hats

More bottles

Play pen, another bouncy chair

Double buggy (with car seats and lying down attachments?), buggy board thing for P. to ride on, new car if 3 car seats will not fit in our Ford Focus

New wall (oh just don’t ask), book places in creche (√)


on 09 August 2005 at 00:06

i am shocked and amazed at mr. waffle’s ability to plan for offspring. i know that post was all about you, and i understand that you are suffering, but i can’t tell you how rare that list-making gene is, at least when it refers to Caring for Others. And i know that of which i speak because my husband repeatedly and without shame forgets to put out a dinner plate for our version of Princess Waffle. Even when we are gathered around the table, and the wee one is wondering where hers is, he remains oblivious. This is offset by his adoration for her, but only just.


on 09 August 2005 at 06:40

1. Get loads of money from somewhere
2. Hire Nanny
3. Buy Gin
4, and etc.


on 09 August 2005 at 07:36

I’m so sorry about the biscuits. You must be devastated xx
I’ll see your list maker and raise you a pile maker. (Small piles of ‘stuff’ all over the house.)


on 09 August 2005 at 09:40

Norah beat me to it, but in my defense i was busy poking my chest and taing shirts off so did not get a chance to comment.


on 09 August 2005 at 10:30

Sorry I’m late – I was ‘totally going for it’:
‘Stand and pretend you are totally going for it in worship and lift your hands up in the air with your arms fully extended to God. Is this exposing any belly skin?’
Yes it was. Am I going to hell?


on 09 August 2005 at 13:15

I believe you are pog. At least you’ll get a decent tan.What’s wrong with Sudoku?


on 09 August 2005 at 13:55

Oh well – at least I’ll know a few people, ay?


on 09 August 2005 at 19:28

Phew – after reading your blog and the lists I’ve had to go and lie down…. my sympathies dear ms waffle… you’ve got so much to do – just keep making the lists I always find that helps!!


on 09 August 2005 at 20:15

Norah, thank you for your kind gift of a sweetie and your dire Sodoku warnings which I would have done well to have heeded.
Kristin, I know, it’s terrifying. And unnatural.
HJB, thank you for your sweetie. I was wondering whether I could apply to you for a small loan? You live in Switzerland, I know you must be rich. You will be relieved to hear that I already have gin.
Minks, ta, am devastated as you observe. Am resolutely refusing to let husband see this comment as I know he fantasises about being allowed to leave heaps of stuff round the house but is rigourously restrained.
Stroppy, are you brilliant at the Soduku thing too?
Pog, I read your blog, you are definitely going to hell. You might as well keep wearing those crop tops…
Loc, it makes people obsessive. Stay away.
Star, I dunno – thanks for sympathy, we’re nervous. And I fear that list is by no means complete.


on 10 August 2005 at 11:24

I think it’s a grand way to pass free time, especially in work. Might even go mad and buy one of those books for my upcoming hols. Mix it in with some novel reading. Though of course I’ll be normal enough to actually write in the book itself…


on 10 August 2005 at 19:34

Don’t do it, you’ll go mad, I tell you, MAD.

Loud dialogue in a cubicle

8 August, 2005 at 9:23 pm by belgianwaffle

Her: Mummy, do you want to do a wee?

Me:Ehem, yes.

Her: I hold your hands.

Me: OK so.

Her: Oh, well done, Mummy!


on 09 August 2005 at 20:08



on 12 August 2005 at 11:37

Just discovered your blog today through Jim and Peggy.
This little story reminds me last time I was at a restaurant and went to the toilet. I heard a man in the toilet next door talking
“Oh, hello there, how are you it’s been a long time, you are so sweet. Say hello to daddy”.
It took me about 2 min to realize he was talking to his daughter on the mobile while he was sitting on the toilet, but at first sight I though he was talking to something else.


on 12 August 2005 at 21:02

Slightly terrifying that, I’d say…


on 02 November 2005 at 23:32

All the fun of the fair

8 August, 2005 at 9:20 pm by belgianwaffle

We went to the funfair yesterday. Am I correct in my belief that it is only in Belgium that the following foodstuffs are offered as standard to punters at these events: mussels, deep fried apple, snails, oysters, dried cod, and chips and

The Princess had to be dragged away kicking and screaming and is still very tearful when the word lorry is mentioned.


on 09 August 2005 at 20:08

Well, we only had chips and apple fritters, so we could have done better…

Consumer pleasures

6 August, 2005 at 12:45 pm by belgianwaffle

She’s very intrepid, my friend the heart surgeon. When we were in college she spent the Summers travelling around Africa, travelling around South America and driving to the south of Spain in a car from which you could see the road by glancing down at the floor. The rust spots were touched up with white wall paint from her parents’ garage. Don’t ever buy a Fiat Panda.

She has just moved back to Vermont after a spell in Ireland and, given her past form, it was no surprise to learn that she drove to Toronto recently to visit a friend. Leaving her husband to labour in the local A&E ward, herself and her 6 month old baby spent about 12 hours in the car. When they got to Toronto it broke down. The Heart Surgeon and her friend’s husband replaced the battery (this is what she’s like) but she was under strict instructions not to use  the airconditioner, radio, fan etc. on the return journey. Lovely. She also loaded up with some IKEA furniture because, hey, why not. She points out (something I always believed to be true) that it took a full two days to assemble her furniture and heart surgery is far easier.

We’re going to IKEA on Monday. Wish us luck.


on 08 August 2005 at 11:12

Don’t do it waffley – you’ll only end up with too many tealights and candles. You will.


on 08 August 2005 at 16:22

I don?t care what people say. I love IKEA. I only ever bought one thing there – my trusty double bed. It served me well for a year, then I sold it to friends who brought it to the US and it is now on its way to Italy with them.
Hope you are having fun with all the little nuts and bolts now…


on 08 August 2005 at 20:03

Negrito, my nerve failed me, we’re going tomorrow instead.
Pog, thank heavens you reminded me in time. I nearly forgot to add candles to the list.
Sus, that’s because you only went there once…

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