Yesterday Roos officially is able to drive. She had her driver’s license already for a few months but yesterday we made it official with insurance. For a 17 year old in California this is not a small investment but Roos has earned the privilege. She already has a passenger too.
She does not have her own car yet but is a driver authorized on Dad’s car. He should be looking for a new one soon…
Yesterday was an unplanned day out of the schedule for us. I was feeling really sick; no idea why because Roos and I ate the same thing. We had Tarte Flambee at a restaurant near the Cathedral the evening before. Roos didn’t mind so much as it allowed her a day in her PJs, drawing on her iPad. In the early afternoon she however was sent out to a nearby Boulangerie to get some nourishment. She skipped over the pre-made sandwiches and came back with one dry baguette (for me) and a chocolate cake (for herself ). The chocolate cake had raspberry filling … so it had fruit I guess. The argument could also be made that a sick person should also have dry bread.
Towards the late afternoon I was starting to feel better. In the evening we had a hot chocolate milk in the hotel. The city of Strasbourg is beautiful at Christmas time. I’ve been here often for work in the past but never around Christmas.
This morning we are leaving for our next stop: Cologne. Wrapping up breakfast before we start driving.
This morning we had a few hours to spare before taking the train to Strasbourg at 4pm. After breakfast we walked over to the Louvre. Roos was interested in the Egyptian section. Jet lag is definitely real however and after about 2 hours we both had seen enough Egyptian papyrus, trinkets and sarcophagi. We stopped to have a hot chocolate milk at a nearby cafe and are getting ready to pack our bags to take the high speed train from Gare D’Est.
This evening we visited the catacombs of Paris. It was one of the sights that Roos had wanted to go to Paris for. We had a quick dinner at Cafe Rendezvous-Vous before heading across the road and down the 234 steps to almost 60 feet below the streets.
We were the last ones in and the guard walked after us to close up. After we came out we took a taxi to the Louvre and walked around a the area a little until we found a cafe that had hot chocolate milk.
This morning Roos arrived at Paris CDG after traveling by herself to France. Great time to practice her French language skills and impress the teacher back at school. We will stay in France for a few days but then drive to the Netherlands to visit family.
Roos turned 16 today. Yesterday I looked through some of the older pictures and found one from when she turned 1. That was back in Druten long before we moved to the US.
We celebrated by going for dinner in an Italian restaurant. Alex, Gary and mom where there as well. Roos got a card from the Netherlands but also a video game and a sowing machine.
Tomorrow I’m flying out to The Netherlands. Opa Jansie is turning 80 in about a 10 days and we need to celebrate that as well.
Roos had her hair colored today …
Today Roos-Marion turned 15 years old. She was very adamant about the cake she was going to get and it is with mixed emotions that I realized the last Dutch had gone out of her. I tried to convince her to get a “real” cake from the bakery but she wanted an Oreo cookie cake from the frozen section in the supermarket. I have to say that it tasted pretty good though !
Tonight all of us also had dinner together at a Chinese restaurant. Gary’s dad and uncle where there as well and Alex and mom brought the presents. Roos got a tablet that allows her to draw on her computer.
Yesterday Roos, Marco and myself went to London. We went by train from Woking station to Waterloo and then took the Tube to Leicester square. The weather was very English; a few serious rain showers and a grey sky. The city however was brightly decorated with Christmas lights so it was quite nice. We arrived quite late in the day and first got some hot chocolate before going to Hamleys. Hamleys, on Regent Street, is the oldest toy store in the world. It opened in 1760. This being a few days before Christmas, the store was incredibly busy. Similar to Harrods the store has people demonstrating the various toys: Â boomerangs, paper airplanes and other things were flying around in the store. At the end of the day the choice was overwhelming and we didn’t buy anything. It was fun to visit though. We walked through London and strolled by Buckingham Palace, Big Ben and the London Eye.
Roos’ hair has been beautifully recoveredÂ from the buzzer treatmentÂ in solidarity with her friend last year. This week however was time to do something special with blonde highlights. Tessa is Roos’ favorite hairdresser and she did a great job. I think her hair goes particularly well with her new glasses. The photo was taken at the Vista Verde school where we were watching Lexi’s stage performance. Lexi sang and acted on stage as part of a middle-school performance.