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Organic Arby

Posted on January 19th 2009 by Amy in Personal, Photos

Arby is 14 years old and today, for the first time ever, he went inside a paper bag. He went in for about 30 seconds first, much too short for us to grab a photo. But a few minutes later, he went back inside and even laid down in it for a couple of minutes!

Arby in a bag

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The story of a micro-loan

Posted on January 14th 2009 by Amy in Personal

Back in December, CafePress (CP) forum moderators and CafePress Voice (CPV) members formed a giving team at and challenged the CP community to a fund-off. A team of shopkeepers and a team of CP employees took up the challenge. Kiva is a truly wonderful organization, helping provide loans made by anyone in the world to entrepreneurs who might otherwise not be able to get a loan. This video explains the Kiva concept by showing what happens when a team of accountants in London makes a $25 loan to someone in Cambodia.

A Fistful Of Dollars: The Story of a Loan
from Kieran Ball on Vimeo.

We were proud to join the shopkeeper team, Butterscotch Brigade.

It’s 2009!!!!!

Posted on January 1st 2009 by Arthur in Life in America, Personal

Happy new year and gelukkig nieuwjaar!! We wish everyone a prosperous, healthy, peaceful and generally awesome new year. May all your wishing come true. It is now 12:23am here in Illinois and we’re watching Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest on ABC. New Year’s Eve is not as exciting here as at our old home in the Netherlands, where everyone does fireworks outside. No fireworks here, except for on TV. That’s a lot safer, though! 😉

July 4th Fireworks (Chicago)
Photo by TravISU

2008: Our Year in Review

Posted on December 26th 2008 by Arthur in Personal

Just five more days and it will be 2009. We’ve had a busy year. We had a couple of short holidays, we ran around Holland to see things before we left, we spent months packing up our stuff and emptying our house, said goodbye to our Dutch family, on September 21st made the big move to Chicago, in October our cat Alex died and in December we bought a new car. Here are some pictures of our year:


▲ This is at Disney Wilderness Preserve on January 3rd. We started off the year at First Night in Leesburg, Florida. New Year’s Day had record low temperatures in Florida. More »

Merry Christmas

Posted on December 25th 2008 by Arthur in Personal, Photos

Wishing everyone a very merry Christmas! The following picture from December 2004 shows our cat Alex with a Santa hat. Alex died in October this year.

Alex with Santa Hat

My Top 5 Websites of 2008

Posted on December 22nd 2008 by Arthur in Personal, Top Lists, Websites & Tools

Here are my favorite 5 websites of the year 2008, in random order:

  1. Hulu – Free streaming TV shows and movies
  2. Mint – Free personal financial planner
  3. Netflix – DVD mail service + streaming video
  4. Flickr – Online photo management
  5. Google Reader – News and RSS aggregator

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Arby talks to starlings

Posted on December 21st 2008 by Amy in Personal, Weather

Arby discovered a small group of Common Starlings perched on a wire close to the house. The temperature outside is hovering 0 °F around so the birds are probably huddling close to the house for warmth.

When Arby gets really excited he chatters. It’s like he’s trying to talk to the birds. Here’s a short video of him chattering:

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Driver’s License in 45 minutes for $10

Posted on December 19th 2008 by Arthur in Illinois, Life in America, Personal

Yippee! 😀 I got my Illinois driver’s license today, and it only cost $10. We got to our nearest DMV facility in Deerfield at 8:30 this morning and were the first ones in. They checked my papers at the desk, I paid $10 at the cashier, did the written test, the driving test, took a picture, my license got printed, and we were outside at 9:15!! It only took 45 minutes! More »


Posted on December 18th 2008 by Arthur in Personal, Weather

We drove around with our new car today and went up to an outlet mall just over the border in Wisconsin. We each bought some nice shoes at the Columbia store there. 🙂

We had lots of little icicles on our car this morning:

Car Icicles

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Our Toyota Sienna

Posted on December 17th 2008 by Arthur in Personal

We bought a car yesterday. It’s a 2002 Toyota Sienna minivan and we picked it up this afternoon. We wanted to drive around a bit today, but a snow storm forced us to come home. Here are some pictures before the snow really started coming down.

Toyota Sienna 1

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