Mom and Dad Visit the Netherlands!

Hot on the heels of our trips to London, Berlin and having Urs and the Anastasia’s visit, my parents arrived.  They landed on the morning of Liam’s 10th birthday and would stay through til the day after Aidan turned 13.  I couldn’t have asked for a better birthday gift for the kids than to have their family here (as Josh’s parents arrived immediately after my parents, the celebrations continued for their birthdays for yet another week – more on that later).   Continue reading

An Ever Evolving City – Berlin

A few days after the Anastasias visit, we were off and running again.  Like I said, April and May were crazy months for us.  A bit too crazy once we looked back on it.  We’re getting too old for being so over scheduled with travel and guests.  I can’t believe I just said / wrote that because I love travel and having visitors.  But 6 straight weeks of it was a bit much!  Our last trip for a bit was a quick visit to Berlin.  Continue reading

The International Leg Tour

Just a few days after Urs’s visit in April, the Anastasia family, friends of ours from our old neighborhood arrived for a quick 36 hour visit.  They were in London for a family trip and the vacation was unexpectedly extended so they made a quick decision to come to the Netherlands for a visit.  We didn’t tell the kids…

We didn’t tell them because their girls are two of Aidan and Liam’s closest friends from home.  Especially for Aidan.  Aidan and Lindsey have always stayed in touch and even when they’ve gone through the “I’m too shy to actually have a conversation with you until the moment I have to get on a plane despite the fact that we text and email regularly” phase for a few years, they’ve always stayed close.

We had a baseball game that day (surprise!) and Josh and I arranged to get a rental car so that I could head into Amsterdam to pick up our friends.  We showed up at our house and had the girls ring the bell.  Josh had the boys answer the door and the looks on their faces were priceless.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t fast enough with the camera to actually capture that reaction.  Like with any visit with this group of friends, we all picked right back up where we left off and it was nice to see Aidan and Lindsey have finally made it past their shy phase.

It’s amazing the stuff you can cover in just 36 hours.  We spent a few hours walking around Naarden, took some time wandering around Amsterdam and still had time to go to Keukenhof to see the tulips.

But like our visit with Urs, the best part was getting to have some quality time with our friends and bonus, for the kids to also have time with friends from home (I’m pretty sure this is only the second time kids from home have been to visit).  Thanks for visiting Anastasias!!!

Oh and in case you were wondering why it’s called the International Leg Tour – it is all about Rich wearing shorts no matter the time of year.  And during their trip, there are several shots of him posing similar to he and Josh above with the “leg” on display!

Knuffels en kussen,

Julie

Ursula Comes to Visit

As I mentioned before, I’m just a teeny bit behind in my blogging so I’m going to utilize the NaNoWriMo month to try to do some catching up.  Sometimes having a time crunch can be super motivating, especially for me.  Now that I’ve started back, I just can’t stop!! Of course, now the challenge is remembering back to what happened in the last 5+ months.  Thankfully I had at least started a few entries and/or threw up some titles into drafts as a reminder of what to write.  I probably will miss something along the way, but nothing I can do about that now. Continue reading

#NaNoWriMo 2017

So I’ve decided not to officially do NaNoWriMo 2017 this year.  It’s not because I don’t think I could do it, it just kind of snuck up on me and I’m just totally not prepared for class.  It was a really great experience for me last year and I’m glad I did it.  Just not this year.  However, that doesn’t mean I’m not going to write.  I haven’t been writing in ages and I’ve needed a push to get back to it.  Instead, I think I’m going to use this time to catch up on my blog.  I’m so incredibly behind in my writing and I have about 60 drafts started but not finished.  If I can commit to completing (not necessarily posting – after all, a post a day might be a bit much for my readers) one draft per day, I think by the end of the month I’ll still have about 50,000 words.  It’s something I’ve been meaning to do and having a little competition involved certainly helps to give me a push.  And writing this entry, I’m already 183 words down.  Ready, set, write!!

It’s Been a While

It’s been 5 months since my last post.  In 8 years of blogging, I’ve never gone more than a few weeks, so 5 months feels like a lifetime.  I’ve been wanting to write and yet, I haven’t. I’ve hit a phase here where now that we’ve bought a house here in the Netherlands, I’m feeling rather content.  My blogging was a way to deal with frustrations, celebrate victories and more than anything, to have a record of this adventure for the kids when they got older.  But things change and so have I. Continue reading

A New Start

I’ve been a bit incommunicado lately.  I don’t have one good reason, but several weak ones. I’ve been busy.  And I had a little freak out about putting my family on a public forum (still kind of freaking out about that). Between the new house and new puppy, our 2016 ended on a beautifully high, but very busy, note.  It was a year full of positive change and self discovery and now that the new year is well under way (I’m sooooo far behind in my writing), we’ve been making even more changes to our lives and my writing had been taking a bit of a back burner to getting things done.   Continue reading

Moving… AGAIN

After 7 years and 7 moves, I’m about done with moving.  This time is made more complicated by the fact that we aren’t just moving into a new house and unpacking, but instead are renovating the house that we bought and moving during the process.  So we are surrounded by boxes in both places right now, as well as construction, once again in this limbo space that I despise. Continue reading

Our New Moving Tradition – The ER

For the longest time, our family “tradition” involved having at least one child (usually Liam) puke on any given trip.  It wasn’t a good trip unless we could count on Liam vomiting somewhere, and bonus if it was multiple times (remember that trip to the US when he puked 11 times???).  As Liam has gotten older, this phase seems to, thankfully, be waning.  However, a new “tradition” seems to be emerging. Continue reading