Can’t believe how fast summer is going! We are already half way into summer vacation and it is so nice to spend some quality time with Miss Dia. Honestly she amazes me in a whole different way every single day and I am truly honored to be her Mom. Also grateful that I am getting back into blogging .
So here’s what we did in week #4.
We came back from Las Vegas and Grand Canyon completely recharged and inspired and I finally took the plunge and taught her how to sew on my machine. She is a natural and will surpass me in no time.
I love that we have this mutual love of creating things with our hands . It also helps me teach her the value of things and how not to be wasteful. Someone spent a lot of time making it!
This week’s camp was at Decordova museum which I can’t recommend enough! They combine art with science in such an incredible way. The camp was about Time travel and the kids got to design and create a Time Machine!
#inclusive! She is my daughter of course. We would have nothing else. Everyone is welcome.
She learned to make her own breakfast!
Over the weekend Dia and I took a road trip to New York to hang out with family. She is such a good companion! 4 hours in the car just flew by.
And finally she went to Animal Adventures and got to pet a pine snake, turtle and bunnies. She had a blast at the playdate with her friend Alexis. Thank you Kristin!! Animal Adventures is an incredible place in Bolton. They rescue abandoned, orphaned and neglected animals and provide them with a high-quality life while using them to inspire and educate kids.
Summer Vacation continues for Miss Dia. This week she did two fun camps and discovered that she actually likes playing basketball!
In the science of building class she made a wooden show box. Complete with hinges and everything. The teacher said that she was the youngest in the class and was very focused! Why am I not surprised? She loves to learn and to make.
Speaking of classes, I took one too! Indigo dyeing. It was a full day class , but so much fun .
Gosh now I want to dye everything in my house.
Miss Dia got a haircut in preparation for our trip to Vegas and Grand Canyon (next post).
And finally off on the plane we went to Vegas where I was the keynote speaker at ASG’s national sewing conference. 700 people! Yup you can say that I was a little nervous 😉
This summer we have decided to take it slow and embrace everything summer has to offer. Earlier this month I started a list of some of the things I’d like to do as a family when Dia is out of school.
1. Visit Museums in Cambridge/Boston
2. Splash Pool in Boston and other neighborhoods.
3. Check out libraries in neighboring towns.
4. Go to the beach
5. Bike rides
6. Sewing lessons with Mom
7. Play with the neighborhood kids
8. Figure out if she is old enough to volunteer anywhere under my supervision.
9. Ecotarium in Worcester
10. Canobie Lake Park
11. Explore different neighborhoods in Boston and try different foods.
12. Set up a lemonade stand
13. Bake sale to benefit a charity of her choice
14. Bring her to work once a week!
15. Playdates galore!
16. Kids bookclub
17. Science experiments
19. Write summer journal
20. Pick a place on the map and learn about it.
Well, week #1 of Summer Vacation is over and we’re already having so much fun. Here’s week 1 in pictures.
We kicked off summer vacation with having ice cream sundae for dinner at Auntiji’s in Marlborough 🙂
Dia started her first summer internship at the PatternReview office where she writes thank you notes for all the outgoing orders. And yes its a paid internship!
We took advantage of the Free Friday and visited this gem of a museum in Concord MA.
Followed it up with ice cream float at Bedford Farms 🙂
Went for a walk and spotted these beautiful lilies in a nearby pond
Had a couple playdates and also invited some friends over for a fun afternoon painting kindness rocks.
We ended our first week baking some patriotic treats and relaxing at home with a simple cookout (no photos) with family. Happy July 4th!
Pedestrian friendly sidewalks, delicious food from around the world, courteous tram staff, teenagers who get in the photo with you, humorous TSA agens, a true melting pot of people who take the time to talk to you… Sounds familiar? No? Let me take you on a trip to AMSTERDAM – The City of Canals.
Loved this neighborhood.
This trip came at a time when I was so stressed that I could barely breathe. A long weekend with my best friend who was also going through a rough time, was just the answer. Despite the cold weather, we enjoyed every single moment and can’t wait to show it all to you.
We rented a cute apartment in a residential neighborhood which was a quick 15 minute walk from most sites. It was safe, comfortable and despite the tiny bedrooms and bathroom, was the perfect home away from home.
While I reached early morning, via an almost red-eye flight from Boston, my friend Sumita was a short 40 mins flight away from AMS. So I took the few hours I had in the morning to take a short nap, shower and get ready for DAY 1.
Thanks to Google Maps, and a handy itinerary my Sister in Law Aditi made for us, we kind of knew what we wanted to do. We started the day with a walk to Ruksmuseum and explored for a couple of hours. It was really windy and cold outside so the museum offered much needed warmth and respite.
We had lunch at this amazing hole in the wall Indonesian restaurant. We were told to try Indonesian food in Amsterdam and we were not disappointed!
Warung Spang Makandra
We bought ourselves a 48 hour tram pass and just started exploring. This city is so public transit friendly it is amazing. We had to stop and take so many photos with all the canals on our way. It is absolutely breathtaking.
We walked to the City Center and stopped for some beer tasting and their famous fries with mayo!
We did some souvenir shopping, bought some wine, cheese and fruit and decided to have an early dinner at the apartment and call it a night. We did 20,000 steps that day!
We kept the morning relaxed to just hang out and catch up. We hadn’t seen each other in 2 years! We are both breakfast people so we decided to check out Omelegg – Another highly reviewed place just minutes away from our Air BnB. You guys the eggs were so fluffy and they came with a salad. Unlike the greasy fries we are used to. OMG!
Amsterdam is so pretty and is best seen on foot so we decided to walk and explore some more before our Canal Tour.
In the Canal Tour, we almost dozed off – not because it was boring but because it was so peaceful. Gosh this city is amazing. Check out this view where you can almost see all 7 arches. Count….
You’ll think it was a food trip (well it almost was) because I am now going to tell you about the most amazing dinner we had that day. The Indonesian Rice Table. It is basically their take on tapas. An aluminium makeshift table with a few tea lights is put on our table with 8 different curries/salads/dishes to try with rice. Absolutely heavenly! If you have an Indonesian restaurant close to where you are, definitely give this a try. And ours was vegetarian too!
Next up – The Flower Market! how perfect is my outfit right?
You guys it was time for … THE RED LIGHT DISTRICT TOUR. We were a little skeptical at first but talking Jodi and Markita at PR Weekend convinced me that this will be safe and very informative and I am SO Glad we did the tour. There were about 15 people plus the guide and we walked to the Red Light District which also happens to be the oldest part of Amsterdam. And being the history buff that I am, I was completely immersed. This is one of the two remaining houses in Amsterdam which has a wood foundation. You can see that its all kinds of warped. But charming.
Not just about the red-light, our guide gave us a short history lesson and it was absolutely fascinating how AMS being one of the largest trading ports led to the bustling red-light district. It was also very safe! Our tour was a 3 hour walking tour where we passed all kinds of “windows” , houses, even an old church.
It was good to hear that the women are protected and it is very safe and organized. Definitely not cheesy but eye-opening and informative. For privacy reasons we weren’t allowed to take photos so here’s one with closed shades.
Friday was a really step-heavy day for both of us so we left the tour a little early and decided to call it a night!
Our last day in Amsterdam 😦 so we decided to make the most of it. As luck would have it, the sun came out and we decided to explore all the outdoor markets today. We started our morning in the Jordaan neighborhood which was absolutely breathtaking. We took lots of photos!
At the Noordemarket Sumita and I bought amazing artwork from a lady from Mozambique. I am having a hell of a time trying to figure out how to frame it 😦
There wasn’t any fabric at the Noordemarket so we asked a few locals and ended up at the Albert Cryp Market which was FANTASTIC! We are both not big shoppers but we enjoyed looking at all that this market had to offer. And then I spotted some fabric stores and there goes an hour 😉
Lunch was at this Ramen Noodle (sounds crazy but it was delicious) bar where I literally wanted to bathe in that broth 😉 Topped with so many delicious veggies. I washed it all down with Kirin beer and we were ready to walk some more.
Gosh, by the end of it, my back was really hurting so we decided to slowly back to the apartment for a little R&R. but not before I spotted a bookstore and got myself two sewing magazines 🙂 God bless my friend for giving in to my whims. She is my bestie for a reason.
I am having a hard time coming up with words to sum up this Amsterdam trip with Sumita. It was so much more than a sightseeing trip. It was a detox for my soul, my mind and my body in the company of someone who just gets me. It was accompanied by zero judgement, plenty of hugs and kisses and even some tears. But isn’t that what life is worth living for?
And as I always say, when a vacation ends, the best part about that is, you get to come HOME!