Sunday, May 29, 2016

New adventure - Beijing!

Guess what: this summer I will be going to China! To be precise, I will join a summer school at Beijing University to follow courses in international relations and about the Chinese culture. I have never been to Asia, let alone China, so I am very curious about what to expect. I look forward to an experience full of colors, tastes and new cultures.

I am planning on photographing a lot (read: everything), taste new foods (no dogs or cats though), really trying to grasp the Chinese, or Beijing, culture, buying Chinese souvenirs, walking the wall, and seeing everything else the city has to offer.

Ella, from the instagram account @thisiseastbound has beautiful pictures which have made me even more exciting to travel east, here are some of her stunning shots:

If anyone has tips and what to (not) do in Beijing, please let me know.
I will keep you updated on my new adventures and I will try to write more often!
Lots of love X

Monday, June 22, 2015

Three Happy Things

Three things that can make your day.

1. Coffee. Hardly anything can get close to the joy that a good 'kopje koffie' can give me. I usually go for a latte. Amsterdam makes a dangerous place for coffee aficionados like me, since you can find the cool coffee places EVERYWHERE.
This was at 'T' @ de Roetersstraat in Oost (from Instagram: liekegty)

2. Good weather. And with that I mean sun, baby. It is such a difference whether I start the day in a sun-filled room where I can hear the birds sing outside or whether it is dark and rainy. There is a certain kind of joy in the air when it's a lovely day. As if Mother Nature is in love. *cheesy, but true*
Berlin! (from Instagram: liekegty)

3. Music. Just like coffee and nice weather can music bring me in a different state of mind. It is crazy how much emotion songs can capture and how they can bring back memories. Plus it can be so beautiful. Examples of songs that can bring pure serenity: 'Turn Away' - Beck, everything by Adiemus, 'Only Time' - Enya, 'Matilda' - Alt-J and everything by Angus & Julia Stone.
Music store in de Negen Straatjes (from Instagram: liekegty)

Friday, January 23, 2015

Making Choices


I believe that one of the most difficult things in life is making choices. Ever since growing up, we are expected to choose. Before a certain age, your parents are a big part of your decision-making, but when you are getting older, this becomes more of your own responsibility. As a teenager you have to choose what high school you want to go to, what classes you are taking, what to wear everyday, how to respond to situations, if you want to take a gap-year, if you want to go to university, what university you want to apply for and where...etc.

Luckily, I already have all those choices behind me. I am not sure if I made the right decision in all cases. When looking back, I might for example have chosen a different high school. However, (this is really cliché -but true) if I would not have made the choices I did and if I didn't experience what I have experienced so far, I would probably not be the person I am today. I am happy with who I am so in retrospect, I would have made the very same choices again.

Ruth Chang had an amazing TED Talk called 'How to make hard choices'. So inspiring! The point she arrives at is: When choices are really hard, so when neither of two options seems to have a 'better' outcome, we are not driven by reason to decide, but we define who we are by making our own rationale for the choice we made. Here is the video where she explains it:

Some of the choices I'm dealing with now are:
- Am I going to join a student group (/sorority) and if yes, which one?
- Am I going to look for a job? What kind of student job would I want?
- Should I do more things to meet new people?
- What direction am I going to choose for my study (politics/psychology/law/economics)?

"People say I make strange choices, but they're not strange for me. My sickness is that I'm fascinated by human behavior, by what's underneath the surface, by the worlds inside people." - Johnny Depp

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Room at my Amsterdam apartment

Hey everyone! I thought it was time to post again. As I've mentioned before, I'm studying and living in Amsterdam. I moved in here about two months ago, and this weekend I was finally done with installing everything in my room (bed, desk, closets etc.). Personally, I LOVE (interior)design. I have several boards on my Pinterest page where I get my inspiration: home is home (= interior design), home - exterior (=gardens/backyards/exterior house design) and home details (=home details, duh).

I also love photographing so I made the genius connection between the two and took some pictures of my room. I am sharing the apartment with my friend, so for now I just photographed my room. It is still not completely finished, I want some art/posters on my walls. So if any of you have suggestions, let me know! I was thinking about some XXL beatles / henri mattisse work -poster for above my bed, but I like to take my time for decision-making so I keep browsing Etsy, Ebay and Pinterest for ideas.

Room with a view, kind of.

Spot the bird.

Closets! I felt like a master after I installed them myself.

I love this drawer with mirror.

Bought this cute bag at the Field Museum in Chicago.

My desk, abnormally cleaned up.

You could say that I have a little stationary fetish. The red notebook is Moleskine and the planner is from Paper.

UKULELE, love it. And I bought that plaid in Mexico.

There is something about cute little lights.

Currently reading this book: Stoner - John Williams.

#bokeh #yolo

Today I've already spent too much time doing nothing/ watching YouTube videos/browsing other blogs while I actually have to work on my 4000-word paper. Yay... off working X

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Chloé + chill weekend

I am usually not the person who buys stuff impulsively or irresponsibly; financially seen, I am often really rational. This means that I'm not used to buying really expensive clothes or beauty products. Most of the time I buy my clothes at shops like Zara, Monki, Pull & Bear, Mango or H&M (how mainstream) and beauty products at the drugstore. But this time I decided it was time to spoil myself a little bit. I've been wanting to have a new perfume for a really long time after I use my very last droplet of my 'Harajuku Lover' fragrance, I put my mind on buying a new perfume. 

I tried some fragrances earlier these weeks, under more Marc Jacob's 'Daisy Dream' and 'Daisy eau so fresh' which I both really liked. Yesterday I went to Douglas to try out some perfumes and I discovered a fragrance I hadn't tested before and it was love at first smell: 'Chloé. So I put it on, but it was still a big step for me do buy such an expensive perfume (my sister was literally screaming at me for this haha). However.... next stop was the shop ICI Paris XL where I bought the perfume + body lotion in a very good deal (me like!). 

Such a classic fragrance

It is one day after I bought it now, and I am still a bit in love with it. No regrets luckily!

This perfume adventure took place in Nijmegen; a Dutch city in the east of the country. I was here for a short weekend with my family. We stayed in a hotel (with swimming pool, yay) and we went to a museum, had a nice dinner in the city and most of all: relaxed.
My break almost over! Monday, I will be going back to the stressful life of a student.
But hey, I still have my perfume.

la lieque

Dear readers,

I changed the name of my blog from 'smiling koalas' to 'la lieque' because I wasn't really content about the name. My name is Lieke and in the French 'lieque' sounds like it so la lieque seemed a perfect name for a French language lover's blog.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New year, no fear: 2015

I know it's a cliche, but I can't believe how fast time flies. Today it's the 31st of December which means that tomorrow, the world will leave the year 2014 behind and we will start freshly with 2015. A part of tends to feel kind of sad about it: the time is slipping away and what is it that I've reached this year? I celebrated 2014 last year with a party in New York which was a lot of fun, just like my entire study year 2013-2014 when I was in America. While being there and experiencing the best time of my life (literally), I knew that nothing back in Holland could top this off, and I was right. I miss the people and the life I had there, but I know that musing about 'that life' won't really help.
Happiness comes from within is what they say, I think it's time to work on that:

So here's to making new friends in 2015,
continuing working on my blog and
healthier living (work-out more & eating healthier)

Here's to partying more in 2015 (yes this problem is real),
keeping up with my studies  and
living in the moment

Here is to letting go of my fears,
waking up with a smile and
being kind  in 2015

I'm not expecting to fulfill all these goals perfectly, but I see them more as a guide to live by!
What are your goals for 2015?

NYE in New York (I'm that > one) 

Look, it's a smiling Frida Kahlo + friend

“The most beautiful moments always seemed to accelerate and slip beyond one’s grasp just when you want to hold onto them for as long as possible.” -  E.A. BucchianeriBrushstrokes of a Gadfly