Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Tweet this mutha

I have a confession…
Now, every one of you has good reason to be critical of me. I want to say to each and one of you simply and directly, I am deeply sorry for the irresponsible and selfish behavior I engaged in. I know people want to find out how I could be so selfish and so foolish. People want to know how I could have done these things to my friends and to my readers. And while I have always tried to be a private person, there are some things I want to say.
I am officially a tweeter.
Or a twat.
Or maybe a twit.
Anyway you spell it, it’s pronounced “hypocrite.”

When I first heard of twitter I swore I would never have one…ever.  We were even throwing around the idea of having it for a class so that we could give opinions during lecture to be read later…still against it.  And I’m glad they didn’t decide to do it, because I think I would have flat out refused. 
But then I got a blog.  And when looking at another rss feed type thing, I liked that the author had updates as to the status of any new material…”currently writing” or “no post tonight” etc.  So I got a box for my blog.  And then I deleted it deciding I hated it.  But then I got one again.  I liked it for the plain fact that Grammy and Mama wouldn’t think I fell in a ditch in the middle of nowhere because I failed to post one night. (No they don’t really think that, and no I have yet to fall into a ditch in the middle of anywhere)
Then fellow bloggers started having giveaways and you got an entry for following them!  Well that sounds like a deal to me!  Commence the following of blogs, and possible retweets.
Then I read this entry at my good friend Ali’s blog.  And my interest was peaked.  And after seeing this amazing comic last firday and discovering I could tweet a congrats to him, my mind was blown.  Not only can you basically send personal messages to any celebrity who also owns one (read: EVERY celebrity) but they can reply back?!?!  That was it.

And here I am.
Follow LibbyCox510 on Twitter

Now I’m no Perez Hilton, or Britney just yet.  And unlike Miley, I don’t think I’ll be deleting it anytime soon. And I have yet to understand the whole #thing.  And texting costs me a lot so there's definitely not going to be a constant stream of updates.  But it doesn't matter because I’m now on the search for people I’m a fan of.  And I will let them know when I think they’re awesome.  And when I have something thought provoking.  And maybe…just maybe one day…there will be an @LibbyCox510 waiting for me…preferably from LadyGaga.

P.S. The first part is a direct quote of Tiger Wood’s official press conference.  In case y’all were wondering.

Word of the day: gekwetter – twitter (they actually have a word for it!!)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Top Ten: This should take you back

So I'm babysitting tonight and was graciously allowed to place Fien in front of the tv while I made dinner, and then while she ate dinner, and for one episode of Diego after dinner was complete.  In short...homegirl watched a lot of tv today.  But these shows (usually on Nick Jr.) seem to be all that children talk about.  And most of it is the type of programming that I watch and go "uh...yea right.  What is this educational aspect?  Um and why must I count with you?  What if I don't?  What're you gonna do Steve?  Back in my day...oh no I just said back in my day...when did I turn into that's ok because we already talk about it...i mean they were legendary...i mean...aaahhh...Libby stop stressing about it...hey look it's DORA!"
Yea that's what goes through my head almost every day.  I look through it finding things that are wrong with it all the while never taking into consideration that I used to be in love with three girls with super powers.  Now, you'll have to forgive me because I didn't include ones I didn't watch a lot (Darkwing Duck) or ones which I shouldn't have watched (Ren & Stimpy), ones that only came out after I was considered too old to watch cartoons (Fairly Odd Parents) or ones that were only on on primetime (Simpsons.)  So without further ado:


So what do you think?  I'm sure some of them have got to be your favorites too!  Or what were your favorites?  Sigh...they don't amke 'em like they used to.

Word of the day: spotprent - cartoon

Monday, March 29, 2010

Smooth as Porcelain

It’s time for a new series here at 5371 Miles Away.  And I even spent extensive time finding a picture, and creating a cute little icon for whenever I decide to write for this series.  What is this series about you ask?

That’s right.  The “enemy” as it were is any and all things that I did not expect to give me such a problem.  Of course they're things that aren’t really that harmful, hence the awesome goomba icon, not something really scary like Freddy Krueger or Carrot Top.  Just things that (probably because I’m a nanny) have become an issue for me and I probably thought I would not have to deal with them until I had children of my own.  Like this entries enemy…

The potty-training-potty.
Look at it!  It looks so cute, and pink, and friendly looking.  WRONG! Who would have thought this tiny €3.50 piece of plastic would be the cause of so much stress in this house.  And we try to make it easier.  There are actually four of these things strategically placed around the house (and mine) so as to create the optimal outlet for Fien’s…well outlet.  And, when she goes on it, she gets a treat, a high five, and a Libby/Lily exclusive “Pound-It.”  And, when she starts going often enough, she gets BIG GIRL DORA UNDERWEAR!  But until then, she is stuck in training pull-ups which are so much harder to change…things…tend to…fall out…*shudder.*  But does this give the little princess the motivation to sit on her throne?  Oh no.  Of course not.  Except…and of course there’s always an exception…
-In the middle of a walk.
-In the middle of a bath.
-Right after she gets a clean diaper.
-When we can’t find the potty.
-When Fien is covered in paint and only hopes of movement from the table involves Libby holding her at arms length begging her not to touch anything.
-When Libby is also using the bathroom.
-When Libby is in the middle of almost burning something on the stove.
At those times, Fien is perfectly willing to let me know that the time for the potty has come, and her pants are most likely already around her ankles, countdown commencing, and nothing stopping me from having to mop up a very disgusting floor but some really good instincts and the sheer grace of God.

I know all parents have gone through this.  But honestly, I didn’t even factor this into any sort of Nanny duties.  Ever.  If it were up to me, she’d be in diapers until next October. But it’s not, and she’s not, so I guess I must deal.

Word of the day: potje – little potty

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Silver is just as good as gold

You are now reading the blog of one half of the legendary Beer Pong team that is…
(not to be confused with Blue Steel which is just the face I'm making)

Yes that’s right ladies and gentlemen.  Mags and I went into Amsterdam Friday night to a comedy club called Boom Chicago.  It’s an English-speaking club where many a star (including Seth Meyers) got their start.  When we first got there we saw an amazing comedian Reggie Watts.  That guy is so good!  Look for him!  Watch him!  He will go far!  And they do improv at Boom Chicago.  Which I love!!!  But more importantly, Boom Chicago is a club that hosts a monthly Beer Pong tournament.
Now for many of you who have not been in college in America in the last ten years, Beer Pong is a drinking game that involves, four players, twenty cups, two ping pong balls, and beer…lots and lots of beer.  You take turns throwing the ball into the opponents’ cups, and then drinking.  If you’d like more info…watch this really boring video, or walk into any frat house on a Friday night.
Well, Mags and I were a little nervous.  We had no idea what we were in for.  I have played a couple times, and I've never been very good.  Just ask my father who, along with his best friend, whipped their daughters' butts at the game.  Anyway, Mags and I were surprised to find out that we were the only American team and (not so) surprised that we were the only girl team.  But WE OWNED!!!  You would not believe how well we did.  But I shall tell you anyway…we got second place…OVERALL! We met some way fun people along the way...
Tons of English speaking boys, but all of them from not-America and all of them with lovely accents.  Oh how I love those accents.  Mags was my wingman.  And a very good wingman she was.*  Also we acquired a hat.  It was a cowboy type hat.  And now we have it…
And over 200 pictures of the night because I kept handing my camera to whoever was closest and telling them to take pictures during games...
And 60 Euros for winning second.  So that’s awesome.  Also a whole lot of respect…we won that...NAY...earned that.  And an invitation to come back.  Which we will.  Also we had arm bands if you didn't notice.
When it came to the final round, everyone was cheering us on.  Even after we lost, when we were up on stage and the way everyone was celebrating, you would have thought we were the winners.  Proving that we might have gotten second on paper…but we got first…in their hearts.

*Unfortunately the powers of wingmen do not extend to getting a train to stop being stalled for over an hour in Amsterdam Centraal while trying to get back home at 5 in the morning when all you want to do is sleep and not ride a bike that is too big for you and requires you to hop off every time you want to stop in the hopes of not crashing which happened a couple times anyway.

Word of the Day - winnaar - winner

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Chocolate, Waffles, and Beer…Oh MY!

So last weekend I hopped on a train down to Brussels.  It should be noted that it took two hours.  It takes longer than that to get out of California, and here I am already in another country.  Anyway, Brussels is in Belgium…Belgium is like the younger brother of Holland.  It’s still part of the “Benelux” family – that’s BElgium, NEtherlands, and LUXemburg.  (Luxemburg is unfortunately the red headed stepchild of the family.)  But it’s less well known, not nearly as cool, and a band nerd…whoops, getting personal.
Anyway, Brussels is the EU capital.  EU being the European Union.  That thing that’s trying to run a continent…well the western half…well the western half, minus a couple countries who are being butts about it.  But no one really cares about that…because why would you when everyone is busying shoving some of the most delicious food ever down their throats?
The people of Brussels are Dutch or French.  If you’re Dutch, you speak French, English, and “Flemish” (also known as the “I’m not Hollish” version of Dutch.)  The French speak…well…French.  They’re kind of snotty that way.  One of the French guys I met even told me so.  Although he was the exception.  Not snotty, and spoke English.  Also my CS host.  Also his friends.  Ok, maybe the first guy got it wrong.  Anyway, I met Lily on the train and we headed down together.  She was meeting a friend, so we spent some time wandering the city before parting ways.  We had a lovely afternoon on a terrace in the main square surrounded by beautiful buildings, people watching, beer tasting, and trying desperately to pretend not to be Americans (we were sitting next to really annoying ones.)
I then met up with my above mentioned couch surfing host who was having a CS party that night...perfect!  I met a bunch of new people from all over, had delicious pancakes, and listened to a great jam session.  Well as much as I could before falling asleep.  I was really tired apparently.  But the next day, I helped clean up and said goodbye to my favorite host ever…
Oh and also his owner…
Then I was free to wander the city.  I went up to the top of a parking structure where I had a 360 degree view of the city.  I could see all the way to the Atomium…
See it out there?  The cube like thing?  The Atomium was built when the world fair came to Brussels.  People say it’s Belgium’s version of the Eiffel Tower.  But lets just say that the French people living there do NOT like that comparison.  But in a way it is…built for a world’s fair, can be see from almost any window in Belgium, and looks no different up close than it does from far away.  And once you’re there, you’re like “well there it is.”  Ok I have yet to go to the Eiffel Tower.  So I’ll get back to you on this comparison.
I also went and saw the Mannequin Pis…
Yea that’s write…translation – Peeing Man.  Well it’s really more of a peeing baby.  And there’s nothing special.  But oh man do they worship that thing.  They have made chocolates, cork screws, statues, everything.  Some of them are actually bigger than the actual statue...
Really it’s just sad.  Which is why I bought a chocolate and a statue.  And since they realized there is a market for urinating figures, there’s also a peeing woman (I do not find her) and a peeing dog…
Yep.  I also went and saw the Royal Palace.  It was big…that’s really all there is to say…
Plus I saw a beautiful church...
And of course, the theater...
And look Grammy!
And I went to the Bozar museum and saw an El Greco exhibit. It was pretty impressive, I have to say.  I wanted to see the Frida Kahla exhibit, but it was sold out.  And I found a great used book shop.  And a great not-used bookshop where apparently they make a mean cappuccino.  Well I had to try that out, so I bought a book I’ve been meaning to buy for a while now, sat down, and enjoyed an afternoon coffee.  And it was lovely.  On my walk back however I noticed something interesting.  Can you see what I see? (You made need to click on it to make the picture bigger)
Before I headed home, I went to this highly recommended Tai place that was super cheap.  I sat in my little corner with my book sipping my wine, slurping my soup, and chowing down on my noodles. AND only paid 12 Euros.  I’d say the day was a huge success.
But you know what?  You don’t really care about all that do you?  Because you want to know about the four most important things…beer, fries, waffles, and chocolate.
So we’ve all heard of Belgium Beer.  Many of us have had it.  But have you ever had cherry beer?  No not Sam Adam’s Cherry Wheat or anything like it, but literally Cherry juice…made into beer.  Known to some (read: Lily) as candy beer.  It was pretty delicious.
And of course fries…but you know what?  The Netherlands makes them just as good.  So that was no big deal.  But at least I can say that I’ve had them.
Then there are the waffles.  They’re just as good as you think they would be…but better.  And they’re topped with fruit, chocolate, whipped cream, nuts, anything and everything.  However, if you want to not look like a tourist, then you get one with just powdered sugar.  But I was a tourist, so who cares?
But then…oh then…oh sweet Lord then…there is the chocolate.  Store after store of delicate morsels tempting you in every way.  We ended up going into every store and just buying one chocolate from each.  Each bite, pure heaven.  There was a cinnamon one that literally made me stop walking and scream.  I was good enough not to buy a whole lot, because the ones I did buy, that were lucky enough to make it out the store, were devoured (in a worshiping type of way) on the train ride home.  Sigh…I will go back just for that.  Oh and check out my favorite store…
I know it’s not the right spelling but this is Europe.
So Brussels was lovely.  I’m glad I made it out there.  And I’m glad I got chocolate.  And I’m glad there are other exciting cities in Belgium that are also a cheap weekend trip away…mainly so I can get more chocolate.  Did I mention that the chocolate is delicious?  Just thought I’d let you know.

Word of the Day: Chocolat/Chocolade – Chocolate (French/Dutch)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Lets just say I finally recovered...

Ok so I am officially 8,775 days old.  And yes I remembered to count leap years, and I almost forgot to not forget to not include 2000 until my mother corrected me.  Because there's that weird thing like "Every blah blah blah years there's not gonna be a leap year, but every blah blah blah years there is.  Or something.  So yes, 8,775 days it is.  I have a weird thing about time...I always like to calculate it differently than normal.  Anyway, now that I figured out I'm over 8,000 days old, I think I want to have a 10,000-day party.  I mean, it’s in like 3 and a half years, but if I remember…I will.
And there’s no time like now to write about turning older.  Unless I want to wait till 8778 which is just so even looking…NO!  Libby STOP!  You have put this off long enough!
Ok, so my birthday weekend began on Friday, when these lovely ladies (plus two gents) and I…
Went salsa dancing!  We had a blast!  I like salsa dancing, because when guys come up to you and ask you dance, they (get this!) actually want to DANCE!  What?  I know!!!  Although I've learned a few steps in my time, I was nothing compared to some of the girls being whipped around the floor.  Even if a heel or two became lodged into my calf at various points during the night...

Then on Saturday I headed into Amsterdam for a night of fun with Lily.  Remember how I showed you a picture of me holding a margarita?  Well that was after an extensive search for authentic Mexican food including phone calls, review research, and a glass of wine (always required when the search is labeled “extensive.”)  But I’m pleased to say we found it!  When we arrived, we started with this…
But the dinner ended with this…
See how shiny my face is?  Dinner also included chicken enchiladas verde (my favorite, although they were nothing compared to Mi Casa,) guacamole, and a quick lesson in history…
Apparently, (but this is just according to lily, the one who studied art history,) Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Van Gogh, and Rembrant did not all hang out near the Mexican Pyramids drinking Heineken, and doing body shots.  And here I thought this was an authentic Mexican restaurant.  Sigh.
Well, we had told ourselves that our night would include some wine at home, a nice dinner out, and a lovely night sitting on the couch watching Arrested Development.  But after the above…well we very well could not go home could we?  NO!  So we headed to Coco’s the place where we spent New Years and danced the night away.  Well not really the night…more like 1:00.  We had started early…

The next day was free train travel day!  We felt like being tourist-y so I got my first Starbucks since being here...
Then Lily and I headed to Haarlem, where unfortunately everything was closed because it was Sunday.  That didn’t stop us however from enjoying the square…
Or the amazing church (which we couldn't figure out how to get into)...
Or statues of the man who apparently invented the printing press 12 years before it was actually invented…
Once back in Amsterdam, we headed for food.  (Oh pumpkin ravioli, I love you.)  We needed something in our stomachs so that we could eat pie.  Because Sunday was March 14th…as in 3.14 as in Pi!  So we celebrated…
The next day, on my actual birthday, I entered the main house to find streamers everywhere, a nice breakfast on the table, and a smiling family.  I cried.  As did Suzan.  We cry a lot around each other.  Rogier doesn't get it.  The day itself was fairly uneventful.  Fien took an extra long nap, probably from her sugar crash after eating part of the present she got me…
That night, we went to this adorable little restaurant called Hansel and Gretel (decorated in the fairy tale theme of course) where we had pannekoken.  I got ham and pineapple...mmm!  And of course Fien got poffertjes...Lekker!!!
I also enjoyed logging on to facebook all day and finding all my birthday wishes.  Especially the ones in Dutch!  And the evening ended with a wonderful chat for the first time with Pat back home.
All in all, it was a wonderful weekend, and a perfect way to celebrate my last year before being in my…GASP CHOKE COUGH…mid twenties.

Word of the day: vierentwintig – twenty four (literally, four and twenty)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Top Ten Tuesday: Next stop- Lazy town

Did anyone ever see that show?  It was a weird kids' show where some chick (the one in pink) showed up to her uncle's house in Lazy Town where he was the mayor.  Then she was like "oh no we have to exercise" and then dude in blue shows up and is like "here's how you exercise.  Look at my mustache." Then evil looking dude was like "haha sugar."  I'm also fairly sure there were accents involved.  Seriously...
Anyway, the reason this blog is on the express train to Lazy town is because I haven't written a blog in a while.  And before that I just did another Top Ten and a St. Patty's day one.  And this s just a Top Ten Too.
But I am turning over a new leaf.  I have made a schedule of all the things i want to blog about.  And you know what I don't want to blog about?  My birthday.  Seriously.  No it was great and I had a blast, but that's really all you need to know right?  Ok maybe not, maybe I'll write one.  But just so you know, you're constant need for a birthday update is the reason behind my lack of posts. That's right...not only am I lazy, but I've now switched into blame mode and putting all the shame on my readers.  Oh man, something is wrong with me.   I'm sorry readers.  It's not your fault at all.  You know what it really is?  My lack of cookies.
Anyway, since we're discussing laziness, here is...


My Job (WHAT?!?!)

Watch Frasier

Skype with Family

Drink tea and eat digestives

Just drink


Make travel plans


Get coffees with friends

Oraganize my DVDs (except I'm just saying that so my mom will think I am...whoops)
Ok so now I'm going to go do two, if not three or four of the above things.  Because if there's one thing I am, it's a multi tasker...
See you tomorrow (promise...)

Word of the Day: taak - task


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