The 31 day photo challenge

I recently got the photo idea book of a blog I follow ' A beautiful Mess' and it's full of tips and tricks on how to take better pictures. I also have been feeling a bit bad that after more than 2 years of having my camera I'm still using only 20% of its functions and settings. So I decided to try and do something about it, beginning this December. I'm finally going to find out what aperture, white balance, ISO and all the other weird names mean.
I'm going to do this in a 31 day self portrait challenge the whole month of December.
It is a perfect month to do this, because lots of challenges like Christmas tree lights, dark days,.. I like a good challenge.
Here are the rules for the challenge:
Take 30 (or 31) days of self portraits (one every day)
The portraits have to be about you or show you in some way
You must take the pictures yourself
As you go, share your photos with your hubbie, a friend, online, on facebook or your blog.
Me I'm gonna share them after the 31 days, in January, with you, here on the blog!
Who's with me?
 In these pictures I experimented already a bit, I quite like the printed newspaper effect on the second picture.
Easy tips are always welcome.

discovering new places

I am always on the lookout for new food inspiration to incorporate in my own kitchen and it is cool when you find something that triggers you enough to want to make it at home.
Because nowadays I'd rather cook myself than go out and eat an okay-ish dish for 18€, I always feel bad afterwards to have spent so much money for something we could have easily made at home in the same time frame and for 4 times less money.  It is also 1 of my new years resolutions, if we think about going out -out of laziness- to eat something we can easily make ourselves, we put the money aside towards a nice dinner in a very fancy restaurant. :)

A few weekends ago we went to Leuven and we stopped for lunch at Donki - a new burrito place we discovered. It was good solid fast-food, and I like the way they present the food, the margarita machine and the authentic feel about it. We have been experimenting with burrito fillings ourselves the past few weeks and the three of us really like it. You can't go wrong with sour cream, guacamole and cheddar, can you? They also had some delicious homemade lemonades.

Earlier this week I went to lunch with my friend Laura in Brussels at Jour de FĂȘte, also a lunch place like I like them: a few weekly plats du jour, lemonade maison. -Just good honest food with quality ingredients. A good vibe in the restaurant, nice interior and a real Belgian feel to it.

Staying in is the new going out

Olivia was a bit under the weather this weekend. And except for going to the doctor (and only because Lolo said I couldn't go like that), we stayed in our comfy clothes all weekend & we did not leave the house. And you know what - it was just fine. We played, took bathes (to relieve Petti's lungs), cooked, snoozed on the sofa and cooked some more. I had so many indoor plans, like blogging, Christmas DIY'ing, making weekly meal plans, make lists of everything and nothing.
But I did nothing, and just an hour ago (it is 00.09) now, I got a boost of energy -  collected the laundry, cleaned up the kitchen, folded laundry, made the weekly meal plan and started blogging. A whole weekend stuffed in an hour. Sometimes an hour is more than 48 hours when you are in the right spirit.


Home tour: the master bedroom

A new item on the blog: The Home Tour
And let's start at the most important one, the bedroom.
It is an area of the house that I really enjoy, since it has our bed, my bath tub, a comfortable reading sofa, my clothes & tv. What more do you need to relax?

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What we ate

A long overdue post, but since I am sharing a lot of my plats du jour on my facebook page (liking is loving, my dears) ,I sorta forgot to post them here too. So here we go:
White fish with a mustard-tomato crust, baby spinach salad and baked potatoes
Smeus: Mashed potatoe, crevettes and poached egg
Breakfast BLT upgraded
Perfect Lemon Pie
Orloff Roast with croquettes
Almond Pear Pie
Tuna Pasta in a creamy mascarpone-tomato sauce
Swedish meatballs
Salmon Tartare
Pear Muffins with whipped cream
Normandy Chicken
Spaghetti Bolognese
Homemade afternoon tiramisu
Creamy chantarell soup with toast champignon & poached egg
Fish stew with balsamic vinegar
Taco night
Wild duck ragu with homemade tagliatelle
Winter Salad as seen here
Buttermilk mash with bio salmon and leek

You can also follow my food adventures and inspiration on pinterest