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Becoming Bilingual: A Piece of cake?

This article isn’t about children that were exposed to more than one language since birth, but about kids that were exposed to a different language after the acquisition of their mother tongue. That was my case at five. I know people usually…
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De Vrije School

The range of types of education and schools is large. What to choose depends on your own needs and preferences. This month I present to you: De Vrije School (The free school/Waldorf education). What is the idea and how does this work out in…
I am not a tourist Expat Fair
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I am not a tourist Expat Fair. Visit the fair and the expatsHaarlem stand with FREE tickets

Are you an international living in or moving to Holland? Looking for opportunities and information to make the most of life abroad? jot down Sunday, 4 October 2015 in your diary for Expatica’s annual ‘I am not a tourist’ Fair, hosted in…


After six weeks of summer vacation, I find myself going back to our school time routine. However, as I reflected on last year’s first week of school experiences, I realized that it was so easy to let the new school year go by. Last year, we…
Sand Sculptures Zandvoort
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European Championship Sand Sculptures in Zandvoort

This year marks the fourth subsequent European Championship Sand Sculptures in Zandvoort aan Zee. The sculptures will remain on show through October. Between August 15th and 21st, seven ‘carvers’ from different European countries…
Important facts for the first step to elementary school (Photo: Leóny Lasschuit)

Important facts for the first step to elementary school

  In this article I focus on the first step towards the (regular) education: Elementary School Where should I start picking a good elementary school? Once your child is 4, it's time to attend school. But before the 4th anniversary…
Greenjoying Loosdrechtse Plassen
NS Actie
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Kids Free: kids travel unlimited and for free on NS trains

With the Kids Free Subscription 3 children of 4/11-years-old travel for free and unlimited with you on weekends and during the week on the NS (Nederlandse Spoorwegen/Dutch train net) . The advantages of Kids Free Applies on weekends…

How to Face RAGE in Young Children

For this week I am focusing on the emotion called RAGE. Have you ever felt rage? If yes how did it feel in your body? Where did you feel it? How did your breathing go? Where did it happen? With whom did it occur? What thoughts…
Linnaeushof, Europe's biggest playground, is open

Summer tip: Linnaeushof, Europe's biggest playground

Speelparadijs Linnaeushof: the biggest playground of Europe! So close! Linnaeushof is located in Bennebroek, a 15 minute drive from Haarlem, 20 from Leiden, just some more from Amsterdam and The Hague.  During the whole season (April…
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Multilingualism Is Not An Excuse!

So often, I found myself saying or thinking: “She doesn’t do this or that, she’s multilingual”. When asked whether K. already says something, I sometimes have to reply: “No”. And I am very tempted to add: “She’s multilingual,…
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Sharing Photos Of Children Online: Eight Ways You Can Do It

I’ve been very open about sharing my children’s pictures on the Internet, to go with various blog posts, memes and pinnable images. But recently, something terrible has happened to fellow blogger Vanessa at De Su Mama. Her children’s pictures…
English native speaker

Six Reasons I Wish I Was An English Native Speaker

I love English! It is so great to be able to communicate with a large number of people from all over the world and hear all the different accents! And while I know I speak it really well, and even blog in this language- and my mother speaks…
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Luilak Day

Saturday before Pentecost: little wagons and a lot of noise? Sunday of Pentecost: dirty windows? LUILAK DAY! Luilak, or Lazybones Day, is a youth festival celebrated in Zaandam, Haarlem, Amsterdam and other towns in the western Netherlands.…
A lot of tick bites in our dunes
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A lot of tick bites in our woods and dunes

The amount of tick bites is increasing in the Netherlands. In the last 2 years Tekenradar (the Ticks Monitor) has announced a record amount of ticks in the country. There is a relative big chance to be bitten. Below what to do if you, your family…
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Happy Anniversary! EXPATSHAARLEM TURNS 1! It has been a year of challenges, of new experiences, old and new friendships, lots of wonderful articles, many great events, the start of services and our first partnerships. 10000 visitors…
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Spring in the Netherlands is: kids as pavement artists

Walking out the door this morning I played hopscotch, with askew numbers, drawn by childish hand, in pink and green chalk. Right – Pink, Left – Green.... Right – Pink, Left – Green. My bag was jumping on my hip, a lady with…
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Teen sex in Holland

Would You Allow Your Teen to Have Sex at Home? One of the most challenging and satisfying aspects of expat life is discovering and considering new traditions and ideas about life that are perhaps different from what you’re used to.…
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Born yesterday: mothers and their newborn babies - in pictures

Photographer Jenny Lewis took 150 photographs of new mothers and their babies in their second day of life. Forty of these portraits of mums and their newborn babies, have been published as a book, One Day Young, by Hoxton Mini Press “All…

Australian mum turns Bratz dolls into Regular Girls by Removing their Heavy MakeUp

“These dolls have been rescued and rehabilitated from op-shops and tip shops around Tasmania. These lil fashion dolls have opted for a “tree change”, swapping high-maintenance glitz ‘n’ glamour for down-to-earth style. I hand repaint…
Nonviolent (Photo: Imgarcade)
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In Search of Clarity and Connection (what Nonviolent Communication can bring)

There I was, inside a circle of 30 workshop participants. I’ve never liked being in the spotlight, never saw myself teaching, and I was feeling quite nervous and scared. And then, within the span of about one minute, I felt calm, safe, and…

Five forms of childcare in the Netherlands – Part 3: Peuterspeelzaal (Playgroup)

Doesn't your child go to a crèche or day care? But does he/she starts to get the age that interacting with other children may be important for him or her? Then it might be a good idea to bring your toddler to a "peuterspeelzaal". Peuterspeelzaal A…
Geluksroute Haarlem
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expatsHaarlem participates in the Geluksroute / Happiness Route Haarlem

“Happiness is only real, when shared” – Christopher McCandless (Into the wild) Share what makes you happy and so spread happiness. Because happiness always brings more happiness. This is the idea and ideal behind the Geluksroute/Happiness…
Arrangements regarding children drastically revised as of 2015
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Arrangements regarding children drastically revised as of 2015

As of 2015 a number of tax benefits regarding the cost for your children have disappeared.  Which benefits are gone? compensation single parents, changes in child related budget. Which benefits are gone? * Single parent credit (Alleenstaande…
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ProefPark Haarlem indoor winter edition!

After two successful summer editions from ProefPark the time has come for an indoor winter edition on the last weekend of January. expatsHaarlem was together with some Haarlem media and some well-known food bloggers among the first to receive…

Zelfstandig en Zwanger (ZeZ) (Sole proprietor and pregnant)

As a sole proprietor in the Netherlands you might be eligible for the Zelfstandig en Zwanger benefit (sole proprietor and pregnant). You can request the ZeZ benefit if you: - are self-employed with or without employees; - work for…
Dutch lessons for kids on funny DVDs - watch this video: animals

Dutch lessons for kids on funny DVDs

Effective and funny Dutch teaching program for kids - and adults too? ;-) -  Watch this video lesson: animals. Dutch lessons on DVDs for kids Dino Lingo Dutch for Kids learning program teaches the most common 200 Dutch words and phrases…

My CB Said What? Ridiculous Advice From The Consultatiebureau

To provide a little background for this post, the Consultatiebureau, also known as CB, is a place where parents bring their children in for baby well check ups. Babies are weighted, measured and vaccinated. Parents get advice on parenting, feeding…
Being a Third Culture Kid – Part 3: The Parents’ Role

Being a Third Culture Kid – Part 3: The Parents’ Role

This article is the last piece of a series of 3 on being a Third Culture Kid (TCK). We began by defining the concept of TCK and listing the major challenges of growing up in between cultures in Part 1. The 2nd part was about the benefits of…
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expatsHaarlem Christmas AperiParty

It’s the time of the year again….. Sinterklaas, Christmas, December drinks & parties, surprises and gifts…. We can’t miss it. We want to celebrate it together… in a church! Yes, we rented a church. The magnificent Heilig Hart Kerk…