April, you fool.

Oh, april. How I’ve longed for you. And how long you’ve lasted! In March I whined about how I didn’t really know what to do with myself and the blog as I felt like I lost that so-called sparkle. In April I decided to get over it and the silliness I get from ‘running’ a blog for years that’s become really personal and fun to be taken too seriously. I’ve decided that I am going to have a lot of fun again on here. And I’m resolving to create more time for me to do so, as I feel like I miss the blogging community.

On that note: I changed the blog’s layout! I’m head over heels with the new look. I’ve always leaned more towards the minimalist and sleek look on the blog, but I’ve decided to lose that for a bit. It’s time for the feels and the fun. So a little more of a romantic touch wouldn’t hurt. I’m still debating about the header (as I always am), but the foundation is solid and I love it.

Apart from blogging, a lot has actually happened in April offline. So let’s get cracking with that monthly recap, shall we?

Books read?
– I’ve finished ‘Everything, Everything’ by Nicola Yoon and ‘Emma’ by Jane Austen, which leaves me on 7 out of 14 books for this year. And that means I’m half way there and I need to review the crap out of it on the blog before I forget the feels from every book I read thus far. I love reading back things like that, and maybe you can give me a good recommendation or two. ;)

Movies watched?
– April was a good movie month. I finally watched a few that were on my to-watch list for forever. I’ve seen ‘Sleepless in Seattle‘, ‘Two Weeks Notice‘, ‘After the Storm‘, ‘The Age of Adaline‘, ‘Bridget Jones Baby‘ and ‘Summer Wars‘. I think both After the Storm and Summer Wars were definitely very memorable movies for me. (?/12)

Recipes tried?
– I tried a wonderfully easy recipe from ‘Jamie’s recepten jaarboek’-magazine. It was a nice oven plate full of nice veggies and chicken. I’m going to put up a collection of tried recipes on the blog, so keep your eyes peeled for that. Just don’t expect it anytime soon.

I started April really wonderfully on the 1st this month. My friend, who visited me in Japan last year, went to the “Cherry Blossom Park” in Amstelveen. The park is planted there since 2011, as a memorial to victims of the tsunami of 2011 and the horrors at Fukushima.We had never been there before, but I’m so happy we finally went! In fact, we decided to make it a yearly tradition.

We met up at Schiphol, got ourselves a little make believe picnic selection from the supermarket, and stepped onto the bus to take us to a slightly rainy — but beautifully pink Cherry Blossom heaven. I got cherry-blossom pics for days and couldn’t be more pleased about it.

It was good to talk a lot about everything and nothing under the precious cherry blossom leaves while munching on good snacks and being just thankful for the transience and beauty of life.

VidCon Europe happened. Yeah, buddy! I was really hesitant about actually meeting people, but I was super excited about all the panels and merch and fun-times in general. I actually got to meet Mamrie Hart, Hannah Witton, Freddie Wong and Fleur de Force. Seeing Hannah, Grace and Mamrie live on stage was a pretty big moment too. I loved the panels with Tyler, John and Hank, Kati Morton and Hannah Witton. And I adored Dodie’s performance… she’s adorable and inspiring.

It felt bloody amazing to experience Youtube offline in a convention like this. I would never try to go to VidCon in the US as it seems like a proper mad house. But in Amsterdam things were so chill. I even got signed posters from Hank & John and Hannah Hart. I mean. I mean… yeah. I know. My inner fangirl was satisfied with the whole weekend.

It was also Easter and my mother’s birthday in April. Which was fun! Seeing family always makes me happy. For my mom’s birthday we had a home-made feast with of gỏi cuon. And later that night I saw the “Mattheus Passion” for the first time. It was so beautiful, that I feel asleep during the first half …oops.

I also “discovered” a beautiful and quiet place to walk in the dunes and get to the beach, not to far away from home. So watching sunsets at the beach became a new hobby. That was a recurring thing in April, and I wish it to be recurring the rest of the year too.

“Seldom, very seldom, does complete truth belong to any human disclosure; seldom can it happen that something is not a little disguised or a little mistaken.”

― Jane Austen, Emma

 

And, I’ve indulged myself a bit at the end of the month. I’ve been going without perfume since Christmas, or maybe even longer. So I thought it’d be finally time to give myself my favourite gift again. This was on the day that I met a friend in Amsterdam partly for ‘record store day’ where my favourite Dutch artist (not that hard, I don’t usually like Dutch music, but I think this guy is phenomenal with his lyrics) Spinvis gave a free concert in Concerto (the best record store in Amsterdam for sure).

His new album is/was released at the end of April, not yet for sale. Apart from then and there, so of course I’ve bought it for full price. And I’ve been listening to it non-stop. No regrets.

During the last weekend of April I went to the Japanese garden in The Hague. A visit I last paid in 2013, which was fully documented on the blog (find it here).

As it was the first weekend the garden was opened for spring, it was so ridiculously busy with people. We were actually sort of queuing for the entrance, very interesting to experience such busyness at a Japanese garden, but hey! It was a nice experience nonetheless. Might want to revisit sometime soon.

I would like to close off with a few links, things that I saw or read on the internet in April that you may or may not have already seen. But I thought these were really cool/interesting and worthy mentioning here as they influenced my thinking this month:


Conclusion?
April was fun and tiresome and cosy and cold. I had a heckload planned, and that all was bloomin’ great. I cannot wait for what May may bring. But it’s been a weird couple of months, thankfully I feel like I’m growing and going to a place where I can get a little more headspace for things. At least, feeling detached is waaay better then the depressive thoughts I get mostly during winter. But I feel something has got to happen soon. Although, things have been pretty hectic recently…maybe nothing should happen at all?

May is the month where spring is going strong in full force. And that’s really the thing I’m looking forward to: a little bit of warmer weather. And loads of flowers, still, all the flowers. Also, I am planning to get a lot of Japan-posts up this month. So if you’re into that, keep your eyes peeled. :)

How was your April? Has spring sprung at your part of the world? Are you ready for the next 3/4’s of the year? What are you looking forward to in May? Tell me all, please!