Instagramsterdam: September

Wait, what? September’s over already???

Instagramsterdam September 2014

Seems like I wasn’t here for much of September, no? Here meaning both Amsterdam and the blog.

After Tuscany I took an unintended blog break to get life back on track. I worked a lot on my career and it really paid off. I got my second Dutch client… and it’s a big one. (I popped open a bottle of Heineken to celebrate, wink wink!) Right now I’m working my butt off to make sure that they’ll want a repeat performance from me. Ah, the life of a freelancer. Wish me luck!

There’s so much about Tuscany that I still want to share. At the same time, I have a backlog of posts about life here at home that’s growing longer and longer as well. Life is pulling me offline, and I’m so glad you don’t hate me for it.

Glimpses of daily life in Amsterdam continue on Instagram. This week, you can get a double dose of me as I’m on Day 3 of my takeover of the @sisterMAG Instagram feed. It’s been a lot of fun and a bit challenging too, thinking for a different audience.

I’ll be back soon with my little (blog) hoard of Tuscan treasures. See you in a bit!

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sisterMAG Blogger Feature: Urban Island

Oh hey look, I’m in sisterMAG! What a great way to start the week.

Issue #14 of “the journal for the digital lady” is all about Islands this summer, and celebrates the Urban Island for those who spend their summer holidays in the city. I’m part of a sisterMag blogger feature that highlights what summer is like in the “urban islands” of Barcelona, Hamburg, Essen, Munich, Vienna and of course, Amsterdam.

Amsterdam canals Instagram

Spring with the famous Dutch tulips in full bloom is great for visiting Amsterdam. But for me, summer is the best time to actually be living in Amsterdam. Because Tala doesn’t go to school yet, Marlon and I like to travel off-peak, during the months of April to June and early September.

That leaves the summer for discovering my adopted city: fighting for tables on packed terraces (and discovering new ones), feeling more like myself by wearing sandals and skirts, biking in the sunshine, seeing the canals by boat. I actually feel cheated when we’re away during the summer and I find out that Amsterdam’s been having awesome weather. When the sun’s out in this city, I often feel thankful for my life here, and feel that there’s no place I’d rather be.

I’m happy to be celebrating my favorite season in Amsterdam by being part of this issue of sisterMAG. You can read Issue #14 right here—skip ahead to page 195 for the Urban Island section, or take your time and savor the whole magazine. It’s fab summer reading. Enjoy!

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Rollende Keukens, Amsterdam’s food truck festival

Rollende Keukens 2014 Amsterdam tosti camper van

If there’s a time of year that makes me glad we live in Westerpark, it’s every last weekend of May. That’s when over a hundred food trucks roll into our neighborhood for Rollende Keukens, Amsterdam’s very own food truck festival.

From 20 “rolling kitchens” in 2008, Rollende Keukens has grown bigger, better and yummier every year. This year’s festival was an extended five-day foodie extravaganza with 130 food trucks featuring both tried-and-tested Dutch favorites and cuisines from all over the world.

Rollende Keukens 2014 Amsterdam tortilla truck

Westerpark becomes packed to bursting with people from all walks of life: kids and toddlers squealing on the Ferris wheel, and crusty old men living out their rockstar dreams—or reliving their rock n’ roll pasts, who knows?—on the live music stages dotting the festival; trendy hipsters and young families (and that special hybrid, trendy young hipster families); the ever-practical Dutchies who stock up on cheaper drinks at the nearest Albert Heijn before coming, and Amsterdam expats seeking a taste of home.

Rollende Keukens 2014 Amsterdam sweet dreams are made of cheese

There’s something for everyone at Rollende Keukens, whether it’s simple Dutch fare like grilled cheese tostis and kroketten presented in a fun, creative way, or flavors from a dozen different countries and cultures.

If you don’t enjoy the food, which is highly unlikely, you’re sure to enjoy that untranslatable Dutch gezelligheid—a feeling of belonging and fun that comes from being in the right place with the right company. I know I do.

Rollende Keukens 2014 Amsterdam

With all this food truck fun just around the corner from our house, it was so easy to stop by every day for a quick bite. Here are my foodie favorites from this year’s edition of Rollende Keukens.

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Rollende Keukens

Last weekend was awesome, and not just because it was my first Mother’s Day. It was a long weekend in the Netherlands for Hemelvaartsdag, or Ascension Day, which meant our little family spent four whole days together. Yay! Even better, we had a great place to spend the long weekend: at Westerpark for Rollende Keukens, or Rolling Kitchens.

As the name suggests, Rollende Keukens is all about meals on wheels. At this yearly festival, dozens of mobile kitchens roll into Westerpark to create one giant open-air restaurant.

Rollende Keukens 2013

Of the food festivals and markets I’ve been to, I have to say this one was the most fun and full of character. That’s what you get when you have creative foodies repurposing everything from Volkswagen camper vans to Airstream trailers to surfboards and boats.

Rollende Keukens Piepermobiel

Rollende Keukens Multimini

Rollende Keukens VW Camper trio

Rollende keukens boat and surfboard

More (lots more!) pictures, and my Rollende Keukens favorites and regrets, after the cut!

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