And I had no idea that the title of this post is also the name of a Dutch website that sells all sorts of amazing things! Take a look, you won't regret it! Well, maybe you will next month when you have no money left for Christmas presents...
So I thought a good place to start my big return to the blogosphere would be with a little kitchen tour. I have tours planned of the rest of the flat too, but as the kitchen was quite tidy this morning it made life easier for me to start there.
Let me warn you though, this kitchen doesn't rhyme with streamlined or super practical or modern. When we moved in, it featured nothing except the (boring, standard white) sink unit. Apparently it's normal in Alsace to rent properties without built-in kitchens, tenants are expected to provide their own appliances AND furniture. Sooo, I went to my trusty Leboncoin website and found the perfect cupboards to go with the vintage tile and overall very... errrr... quaint... look that the landlady has going on in here.
Nice tile, yes? It's a good job I like vintage things, yes? Besides, anything modern woud have just looked ugly and out of place in here, which is why I went for...
Olive green formica! We got these two units and 3 upper cabinets (one of which is white and doesn't exactly match the others) for 50 Euros, so although we spent about 50 hours scrubbing 50 years worth of other peoples' grime and filth off them, they were well worth it! Also, since they weigh approximately 50 tons each, I plan on leaving them here when we move. They look like they came with the place anyway so I'm hoping the next tenants agree and accept them as a gracious gift.
My favourite feature, which I thought would come in handy all the time (it doesn't) and that I really want to show off is this fancy pull-out counter on wheels. So 70's, yes? Well we use it so infrequently that I forgot about and therefore forgot to take a photo of it and had to delay this post by days and days in order to go back and take one. Blogger problems, people.
So, across from these, we have...
The upper cabinets and a yellow formica table that happened to be in my parents' cellar when they moved into their house. As it matched my beloved yellow chair perfectly and they had no use for it, I claimed it as my own. We rarely sit at this table but as the kitchen is quite far away from the living room and dining room (huge flat problems, I know), it's nice to have a place for potential guests to sit and keep us company while we cook).
I know the wall is very bare, it's my biggest problem with this place: I'm not supposed to turn the walls into gruyere cheese, i.e. make any holes to hang pictures, so I've tried to use existing holes. There used to be a matching picture next to this one but one day it decided to jump off onto the floor and the glass from the frame shattered into a million pieces (the nail actually just fell out of its hole, don't ask me how or why). I haven't got round to replacing it, but hey, I can't be expected to do practical things like that AND go back to writing blog posts all at once!
Lots of fruit and veg waiting to be eaten, including cherry tomatoes from our own community garden vegetable patch! And salsify, which I'm not entirely sure what to do with but I've heard good things about it. Any recipe recommendations, anyone?
So, next to this little corner is the door (please ignore the horrible carpet squares in the hallway, I'm doing the same and hoping they eventually just go away), and next to the door we have...
... the fridge and the washing machine, and the firebrigade's calendar because no French kitchen would be complete without one of those. The Baeckoffa dish with the typical Alsacian heart design on was a wedding present from our upstairs neighbour.
And now my favourite spot:
My little shelves! Installed by my husband! With some of my favourite things on them, including presents from some of my favourite people (Hi Suuuz! Hi Claire!)
So that's basically it. Like I said, the sink unit was the only thing in this room when we moved in, but it's quite a big room and we've made it work nicely without spending a fortune on having a kitchen installed.
Notice the two windows? The one on the left opens onto the stairwell, which is why it has a roller blind. I guess the neighbours don't really want to see me with my grumpy face, messy hair and tartan pyjamas when they leave for work in the mornings. I wonder why.