Around Amsterdam: Sunday in the Nine Streets

Showing friends around Amsterdam is one of my favorite things to do. It's so special to give them a little peek into my life here along the canals. I recently spent a warm Sunday afternoon wandering around Amsterdam's charming Nine Streets area with my friend Jen, her husband and their cheerful, chubby baby. They previously lived here last year and luckily, the trio snuck in a few days in Amsterdam during their recent trip to Germany and France, we got to enjoy a bit of Dutch summer together. We were first introduced though our blogs a few years ago when Jen and Justin were on an expat adventure living in Amsterdam (and Italy). Funny enough, we all share similar roots from Florida!

Clustered within a scenic strip of Amsterdam's canal district, the Nine Streets are filled with posh shops, quaint cafes and unique boutiques. We strolled along with baby Ezra, peeking into shop windows and taking lots of pictures along the way. Luckily, sunshine followed us all afternoon and we stopped for a break one of my favorite terraces for a round of biertjes, kaastengels and watching the world go by.

They're currently living in Brooklyn but we missed a chance to hang out during my quick trip to NYC last month, so this was a fantastic alternative. Actually, the timing couldn't have been more perfect, since I've recently returned to Amsterdam myself and am enjoying a few relaxing weeks to settle in before my masters program starts this autumn.

As the four of us made our way back along the Prinsengrahct, we added a stop at Ijscupje (my favorite ice cream in Amsterdam!) to our agenda. Ice cream is always a good idea, especially on a warm, summer day! I chose a scoop of bokkenpootjes. Ever heard of it?

They're a Dutch chocolate-almond cookie with a scoop of tangy blood orange on top. We enjoyed our cones canal side while baby Ezra giggled happily while his chubby cheeks were completely covered in ice cream.

Sunny Sundays are the best. I going to keep my fingers crossed that we get a few more before the seasons switch. Here are a few other photos from our day...

P.S. You can browse more of Jen & Justin's travels on her blog and check out Freshly Picked, Jen's lovely flower styling company, full of dreamy bouquets.

German Village Fair

Heading back from Berlin, we decided it would be fun to stop in a German town along the way. Having been stuck in terrible holiday season traffic, we were long overdue to stretch our legs.

Somewhere in between Hannover and Amsterdam, we found Rinteln, a village along the Wesser River dating back to 1150. It was a quick visit, just enough time to pick up a postcard for Granny (my forever penpal), grab a beer and check out the little village fair. 

Come on, how cute is their town square!? This is the dreamy stuff fairy tales are made of...

This is place really is what fairy tales are made of. Here's a fun fact... On our way down the hill, into Rinteln, we passed the village of Hamelin, as in the Rattenvanger van Hamelen... Still don't get it? This is the where the Pied Piper lured the rats away. Ha!

Lucky for us, a summer fair was happening in Rinteln. We wandered the fair, munched on some garlicky cauliflower and mushrooms and rode on rickety, colorful ferris wheel that dated back to 1880s. 

We enjoyed a Greek salad while listening to a German band cover hits of Donna Summers and other 80s disco songs. Which, I suppose is exactly what you're supposed to do at a little village fair like this. 

Sunset along the Weser and road trip lights heading back into Holland...