Koen and I just celebrated 7 years of being married! We decided to spend our long weekend off together exploring Antwerp a bit more. Tourists in our own city!
Koen and I were finally able to visit Ellis Island! We really wanted to go last year, but because of Hurricane Sandy, the museum was closed. Koen and I visited Ellis Island with Christina and her family, Ashley, and Meredith. This was a special visit because Christina’s father’s father and grandfather (so her grandfather and great-grandfather) entered the United States via Ellis Island and both of their names are commemorated on a plaque. Koen and I visited the Red Star Line Museum in Antwerp recently, which is about leaving Europe for the United States, so we felt like we came full circle visiting Ellis Island and learning about entering the US.
I finally found time to go to MOMU (Mode Museum – Fashion Museum) to check out the Birds of Paradise: Plumes & Feathers in Fashion exhibit! All of the pieces were so beautiful, feminine, and luxurious. It was amazing to see how the feathers were so masterfully crafted. The exhibit includes pieces from Chanel, Dior, Thierry Mugler, Alexander McQueen and Yves St. Laurent. If you’re in Antwerp before the the 24th of August, you should definitely check it out!
My parents made their annual visit this May! We had an eventful start – I fractured my elbow when I fell off my bike on the way to pick them up in Brussels. But who better to have around than your parents? The first week I had to wear a cast to let my bone begin healing, and for the remaining 5 weeks I have to wear a compression sock – otherwise I won’t have any range of motion. So we were in and out of the hospital and doctor’s office a lot! For the rest of the trip we took it easy, taking walks around the city, eating fries, and enjoying Belgian beers. I will make separate posts about Sofie’s birthday party, Dinant, and Düsseldorf. This is a post about our time in Antwerp!
Last Sunday Koen’s parents came to Antwerp for a visit. We had wonderful, sunny weather and took a nice stroll through the city. After a delicious lunch at Burgerij, we checked out an exhibit about royal luggage and then walked a different route back to our apartment. It’s always fun playing the tour guide!
A few weeks ago, Koen and I visited Antwerp’s newest museum – the Red Star Line Museum. The Red Star Line was a company that transported European immigrants to America and Canada. The museum is located in the former warehouses and you are able to listen to and read the stories of immigrants who traveled via Antwerp. There are tales of excitement and disappointment and you’re surrounded by photos and artwork of the voyages. If you are interested in history and personal tales, you’ll love the museum (like Koen and I did)!
Koen and I actually visited Aquatopia around Halloween 2013, but I haven’t had the time to post the photos! The entire aquarium was Halloween themed, so amongst the fish we found cobwebs, ghouls, ghosts, and grim reapers! I also don’t remember the names of the fish I took photos of, but I will describe them as best I can. There was also an incident where a snake slithered out of his habitat – so scary!
Before I can start posting my photos from New York City, I first want to make a post about Grayson and Tamar’s (my brother and sister-in-law’s) first trip to Antwerp! In early August they were traveling around Western Europe and made sure to stop over in Antwerp. Not only was it their first time visiting me in Antwerp, but also their first time in Belgium. We drank plenty of Belgian beer and ate a lot of Belgian chocolates and fries.
Yesterday was a holiday in Belgium, Dag van de Arbeid (Labor Day), and Koen and I enjoyed the sunny 65 degree weather by taking a long walk around Antwerp. We walked first through the Groenplaats and the Grote Markt, then to ‘t Eijlandje. Not quite ready to return home, we decided to try out a new restaurant, Maison Clic’Eau, to enjoy a few drinks on the terrace.
It’s been a while since my last post – I was on holiday in America for 3 weeks! But now I’m back and have a few more museum posts to make. In the end I was able to visit all but 2 (Maagdenhuis and Rockoxhuis) before turning 26. Within the week I will try to make the posts with my visits to the Museum Vleeshuis, the Letterenhuis, and the Hendrik Conscience Library.
With Koen’s Aunt Ingrid, I celebrated my birthday with a trip to the Museum Mayer van den Bergh where there was an exceptional exhibition. The museum was showing for the first time ever 30 “unseen” prints by Pieter Bruegel the Elder. While we were browsing the prints, we ran into a guide who was enjoying the collection during her break. She said she wanted to take in the prints while she can, because once the exhibition is over the prints go back into the dark and because of their delicate nature, and will not be accessible again until an undetermined date. There were no photos allowed, so I am only able to share the website of Museum Mayer van den Bergh and a photo of the building!