10 April 2013

You may have noticed...

That we haven't been updating very much in the last week. Mostly, we went to Groningen (a city in the North) at the end of last week when Mark gave a talk at the university there and this week we are preparing for a visit from Ace's family. All is very exciting! That being said, we'll be on a bit of a hiatus for the next two weeks. If I plan it right, I can write up and schedule some IKEA Vrijdag reviews, but I make no promises. And in case that doesn't happen, I'll give a brief recap of Groningen below.

Mark gave a talk at the university in Groningen last Thursday, so we went up as a family so we could all see the area. We arrived at Groningen's main station, which is conveniently located across the street from the Groninger Museum. They had some interesting pieces on display, particularly from Russian female artists' during the Russian revolutionary period and from Nordic artists during the 1880s. But the only picture we have to show for our visit to the museum is the cool tiling on the stairwell down into the exhibition area.

Stairwell at the Groninger Museum.

After the museum, we checked into our hotel and Mark went off to the university, leaving Little Man and I to explore the town. We tried visiting 3 different large churches, but by dumb luck, all three were closed (it's not tourist season yet).

Matinikerk Tower, Groningen

We did have the chance to walk around and see the architecture and even found a children's bookshop where we picked up Eric Carle's Wat Eten We Vandaag? (In English it's known as Today is Monday) - a book that we can actually read in Dutch with the Little Man.

We also stopped in the University Museum, where a 100 year old whale skeleton was on display. Little Man spent nearly half an hour looking at the skeleton, and we really didn't see much else before their closing time...

Whale skull at the University Museum, Groningen

Before heading back on Friday, we stopped in the Noordelijk Scheepvaartmuseum. Like a significant portion of the Netherlands, Groningen relied heavily on canals, and there was a large shipbuilding industry in the city. This museum has all sorts of old ship parts, flags, maps, and other maritime related items. They even give out a fun Eye-Spy type game for kids with pictures of artifacts in the museum.

We headed back home on the train and got back in the early afternoon, and we've been getting ready for our visitors since then.

You'll notice, this post is short and jumps around quite a bit - it was written in haste, due to my poor time management while cleaning needs to be done. And for lack of a better closing, I'm going to go do some more cleaning. Wish me luck.

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