Visiting Europe

Hallerbos – Bluebells in Belgium

Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog

“The bluebells are blooming in the Hallerbos right now. It might be something you’d like to check out.”, a friend texted me before our long weekend in Belgium. Her husband is Belgian and, lucky for me, she has explored more of the country than I have gotten to. When I clicked over to their website, I knew we couldn’t miss this.

Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog

Blooming for only one week at the end of April, the bluebells blanket the forest floor to the most astonishing and surreal effect against the chartreuse green of unfurling spring leaves. The forest literally glows. I couldn’t believe our luck when our visit corresponded to that very week. The day was a drizzly one but not too cold, and I would say we actually were very lucky. This kind of half gray day gave the forest an even stronger luminosity and saturation of color.

The Hallerbos is very easy to access, not far from Brussels, and the Belgians seem to make a tradition out of a visit to the bluebells as all the parking areas were full despite the weather. And right they are as this sight is one that I feel so lucky to be able to say I experienced in my life. “Let’s make this a yearly tradition!”, I said to Romain. I can’t wait to see the magic through Élie’s eyes when he is old enough to really absorb the sight.

I only wish you could smell these pictures because the flowers, which bloom alongside large areas of wild garlic in some places, and the fresh tree leaves give off the most delicate, clean perfume of spring. So you’ll have to imagine that part but what I can give you is a visit to the Hallerbos, no matter where you are. Take your time, stroll along, and soak up the colors.

Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog Wild garlic at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog Bluebells & wild garlic at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog

Hallerbos

Vlasmarktdreef 4

1500 Halle, Belgium

The bluebells only bloom for a short time at the end of April and the website has a calendar of the blooming season, but this forest has a number of features, that we have yet to explore, that look like they would be beautiful at any time of year.

And a bonus rare sighting: the three of us in one frame!

Bluebells at Hallerbos | egg & dart blog

xo,

A.

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Food & Recipes, Life, Paris, Visiting France

Wednesday Market

This week I wanted to share just a couple glimpses of what a trip to the marché can look like. I have an appointment Wednesday mornings that takes me right past this one and I’m lucky to have a couple minutes to grab some mid-week provisions. Dive in!

The vendors at my produce stand were all encouraging me to come early, early on a Saturday when “the boss stacks everything to the sky!”. I’ll have to do a proper shoot for that. But for now, I want to wish everyone who celebrates Thanksgiving the warmest of holidays tomorrow! Much love and lots of family and friends for everyone. And thank you for reading, it truly makes me feel over the moon when I hear you’re enjoying what I share. Happy Thanksgiving!

xo,

A.

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Life, Loving, Styling

Carotte Sauvage & Loving List

This week’s flowers are making me so happy! I was thrilled to find a huge bunch of green carotte sauvage (wild carrot, aka Queen Anne’s Lace) at the marché on Wednesday. It was one of our inspiration flowers for our wedding here in France and it’s so lush, wild, and delicate that I can’t get enough of it. R. could not believe at first that I had paid for carotte sauvage but then I reminded him that we live in a concrete jungle, I only ever pay between 3 and 5 euros for flowers (twice a month), and they make me so happy! He ‘got’ it, then. I’m really hoping they might be hardy enough to last two weeks (please, flowers?).

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And I’m finally stealing the time to get a loving list together! Here is what grabbed me this week:

  • We love watching the Daily Show on their site (thank you Comedy Central for not blocking us because we are in France) but don’t always love the loud MTV commercials that play between every segment. But this month they introduced us to Rudimental and this song and be. still. my. heart. Yes. (But be warned, the visual of the video has some very sad themes. But listen.)
  • Growing up, my father would bring my mother and I gifts once in a while and from his travels and they often came from museum gift shops. He always chose beautiful, timeless pieces that where often reproductions of pieces from their collections and I always loved the history. This piece or these matching earrings are on my wish-list to continue my collection.
  • How beautiful would a tree full of these porcelain houses be with little tree lights peaking through their windows? I love how simple they are. Everything I want for my holiday this year.
  • Jamie Oliver. I might not need to say more. I have been enamored with his work for years. He has a new book out, 15 Minute Meals, and a television series in the U.K. and I have been loving it! The recipes are simple but the flavors so bold. You can’t watch Jamie and not get excited about food.
  • You know about Damn You Autocorrect, yes? If you haven’t discovered it yet, do. But not when you’re eating lunch. True story: I nearly choked laughing doing that once. Seriously. This one has had me laughing to myself for two days (not while eating).

Do you have a favorite find of the week? I’d love to hear! This weekend, I really want to get some decorating things crossed off our list and get this place finished! Hopefully I’ll have something to share with you on that front next week, God husband willing!

xo,

A.

 

 

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Life

Weekend Fireworks

 

We lucky ducks get a short week over here in France! Thursday, being All Saints Day, is a national holiday and that means a four day weekend since many companies offer the ‘pont‘ (bridge) and give their employees Friday as well. So with the short week, a lazy Saturday meant to banish the last of R.’s cold, and R.’s mother visiting on Sunday afternoon, we didn’t go to the market this past weekend. But oh look what a treat we were brought from my mother-in-law’s garden! Cosmos, garden roses, and dahlias so vibrant they always remind me of fireworks.  I’ll be back tomorrow with a very easy recipe but until then I’ll be stealing glances at the sunshine on the table. How was your weekend? I’m thinking about all of you on the East Coast sans arret.

xo,

A.

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Loving

Firecracker Flowers and Loving

These orange flowers are on our table from Wednesday’s market and I love them so much. I’m always so happy when I splurge on flowers (and by splurge I mean I paid 5 whole euros for these) and vow that I’ll always have some fresh ones gracing the apartment but I often fall off the wagon. Then I crack one day and rediscover how much it adds to a living space. With these, I was hoping for a bunch of wild Queen Anne’s lace that I had seen the week before but the vendor didn’t have any this week. So glad I got these little firecrackers in their place! It’s dahlia season, too, and I think they’ll be on the table next week.

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  • Have you been reading Ann Mah‘s Tuesday Dinner series? So good! I love hearing about everyone’s go to meals. Looking forward to reading more.
  • One of the great things about Pinterest is rediscovering what you pinned but may have forgotten about. Well, I rediscovered my pin of this pink mercury glass cake stand (yes, pink. mercury. glass) and it has got me all obsessed anew. So beautiful.
  • Remember when my friend Lindsey rescued an abused street dog from India? She made the paper! Read all about how Meena is looking for her forever family. (And she had a photoshoot here. Look at those eyes!)
  • The comments section of Wednesday’s post now has some ideas for finding hazelnut flour in the U.S. for the Brandy Roasted Plum & Hazelnut Cake.
  • I have no idea what started the tumble of 90’s songs and bands that started to surge back to mind this week but I’ve been reliving the music of my high school days. Crazy!
  • I have to thank Ann of Uni homemaker for nominating me for a One Lovely Blog award! It’s so flattering! I’m supposed to tell you 7 things about myself which kind of has me stumped. Let’s see what comes up: 1. I just became obsessed with Lonny. Don’t ask what took so long. 2. I don’t like bananas but love banana bread. 3. Apparently I know the names of more Ikea furniture than my husband is comfortable with. 4. I love calling R. my husband. 5. Heights above my head (read: cathedrals) seem to make me more nervous than those below my feet. 6. Julia will tell you, I call eyeballs eyebobs. Which was confusing for my French husband. (There I go, “husband” again!) 7. I actually enjoy ironing dress shirts. (Ok, I did it! Tell me about you? Pretty please?)
  • I’m finally finishing off one of these klismos chairs and it is so sexy it’s killing me: black stain paint and a black velvet seat. Sigh. (Don’t remind me about the orange and white furry cat that lives here just yet…) I’ll share the finished product soon.

Happy Friday!

xo,

A.

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