Rituals and Love

I picked up Juliana from school today, curious how she did with her jet lag and how she was feeling.  She did surprisingly well, although was a bit quieter and moved a little more slowly. She was definitely tired but made it to all her classes and appointments, after being up for 30+ hours straight.  I asked her if she wanted to take a nap, but she said she thought if she napped, she wouldn’t want to get up again.  I asked her if she wanted to go get a bubble tea, and her eyes sparkled and she woke up again. 

 We waited for Charlie and then drove across town for their favorite treat.  I love that she loves these and that I could spoil her. I’m trying to watch my calories so she ordered a large boba tea so I could have a sip or two. This was just right for me, as I got to share a drink with her and not have too much. 

 My mama drove up from Southern California to be with us this week and she arrived this afternoon, right before I picked up the kids. I was so happy that she got here safely, and that we got to spend the day together. I wanted her right by my side, doing everything together. We went to pick up the kids together, read magazines together, cooked dinner together, drove the kids to and from together, went to Target, ate dinner together and watched the end of the Warriors game together too. We laughed and joked and loved on each other and the kids and Jeff when he came home too. She is the most efficient, hardest worker I’ve ever known and I just admire her and all the love she has to give. I’m so thankful she’s here with us for a few days and that we can just BE, her and ME and the rest of the gang too, of course, doing whatever we do. 


Love this life. Love my family. Love my mama.


Day 4: Jet Lag and Sundays

Today jet lag really hit us all. I went to sleep after 1 am and was awake by 4:30 am. Jeff and I got up and made coffee and enjoyed the quiet, thinking the kids would get up soon. Jeff ended going back to sleep and soon turned into after 11:30 am when I woke them all up!

We took a walk to explore the city center, even though we knew the stores would be closed. We allowed C to pick McDonald’s for lunch, against our own interests just to get it out of his system and it was one of 3 restaurants open. I tried a McKroket,which is a specialty unique to Holland since 1999. And you have to pay 50 cents for a packet of ketchup! They also serve fried shrimp which is different from the USA. I like to notice the differences between the two countries to compare and contrast,

On the walk back home, we discovered a great neighborhood park, and a walking bridge that crosses a canal with a beautiful view. These are the things you can’t find in a book. And then walking back to our house, another neighbor was out front and she shared with me tips about what stores were open on Sundays and what hours. For example, Dirks is a popular grocery store that was open today from 4-7 pm, but she said not to go at 4 because here would be a line out the door!

We took a nap and when we woke up, the entire family all went for a walk to Dirks around 5 pm. We decided to shop and cook our dinner together. We had fun picking out all the ingredients and filling our reusable bags. We had to walk to the store which is also new for us, but it was pretty enjoyable. We had fun making our first meal together – a cucumber and carrot salad prepared by C, and then pan fried chicken, green beans stir fried with butter, and roasted potatoes with garlic and onions! Yum!! All were satisfied,

As I was taking the vegetable compost out to the front refuse cans, another neighbor caught my eye and we introduced ourselves. She has a boy C’s age and offered some toys for him to play with until our shipment arrives. We walked over to her place to pick out a few things which I think will help C with his tedium.So sweet, right? Her son and daughter will also go to the same school as our children. Although, her children are in Israel with her parents so that she can work during summer break so we’ll have to wait for more friends to play with! So many sweet and generous people around me, it makes me so happy.

And two more connections happened today – I’m all about that! My cousin Anita is coming to help me on Friday to order our furniture for delivery! I am so thankful and can’t wait to see her again, as its been 14 years!! Her children were just babies then and are now grown up! And the second connection is with a PEO who lives in Amsterdam. We will try to meet at her home later in the week. See. This international thing ain’t that bad!! Slowly but surely…

I hope you’re enjoying a day of rest and slowing down a bit too! Life is good. xoxo