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On Being Boring

I moved from London to Brussels with my husband nearly 10 years ago. When I told people we were moving, the news was greeted with bemusement: why did we want to move to a city that was possibly the most boring place on earth? Ten years later and I can honestly say that I've had more fun here than I ever did living in London. It might not be the most exciting city in the world but it is a fantastic place to live. It is full of hidden treasures that you probably never get to see as a tourist: wonderful shops, amazing food, great museums and galleries, beautiful architecture, a forest (yes, a whole forest), and so much more... And if that doesn't convince you, well, get on a train and you could be in Paris, Amsterdam, Cologne or, yes, London in no more than a couple of hours... Which other city can you say that about?

Family

It’s very rare that my brothers and I all manage to be in the same place at the same time so last week was kind of special. We managed it twice. And not just us, either. Both my mum and dad were there too. And my half-brother and sister. And one of my step-brothers. And all my nephews and nieces. It was pretty amazing. In fact, all of last week was pretty amazing. I can’t wait to share some of the pictures with you. For now, I’ll just show you these, from a party at Billy and Adeline’s. They’ve just bought her grandmother’s old home. It’s lovely and the garden is HUGE. At the end of the garden, after the vegetable patch, is an orchard mingled with pine trees which smells like the seaside summer holidays of my childhood. That’s where the party was held, with a pinata for the children and a fire-pit dug into the ground for cooking the meat, mojitos for the adults and a paddling pool for the little ones… It was beautiful and lovely and HOT and happy. Billy and Adeline both invited their families and I pretended to be the official event photographer. This is everyone:And this is my family:Here’s the extra info: Agnès and Alice (Harry and Charlie’s partners) are sisters. Clotilde (5) and Sam (2.5) belong to Charlie and Alice. Hanaé (3) and Candice (1 month) belong to Billy and Adeline. Silas (4 months) belongs to Harry and Agnès. And Amélie (nearly 7) and Charlie (2), of course, belong to me and Hanno.

For the next picture, I asked everyone to stick their tongues out. Yup. Not a professional photographer for a reason.

19 August 2012 - 5:13 PM alice - belle famille !!!! et chouette journée...

19 August 2012 - 6:20 PM erin - wait.. i don't see you?? grrrrr why didn't you use a timer!! *sticking tongue out!*

21 August 2012 - 11:50 PM Angie - These are amazing! You got everyone looking at the camera, smiling and with their eyes open - that's hard to do even with just one person! Also - you must have to write a whole loada christmas cards - wow! I have a big complicated family too, I don't think we've ever all been in the same place at the same time though - not for YEARS!

23 August 2012 - 6:11 AM Marie - brilliant!

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