Posts

Ollie is ready for Halloween pumpkins. Are you?
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Ollie is ready for Halloween pumpkins. Are you?

Looking for indoor activities for your little one on a rainy day? How about helping Ollie to find pumpkins for upcoming Halloween? Looking for How to Carve a Halloween Pumpkin? Check it out here.
How To Carve A Halloween Pumpkin
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How To Carve A Halloween Pumpkin

Many people would like to carve Halloween pumpkins! Getting in the mood, preparing the atmosphere for a party, surprising kids.... Plus, what could be more therapeutic than hacking a pumpkin to bits? But Pumpkin carving isn't just for…
Happy Mother's Day! (Picture: Arianna Ardia)
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Happy Mother's Day!

Moederdag or Mother's Day in the Netherlands is always the second Sunday of May: this year on May 8th. What, how, since when, ideas for Mother's Day, what to write in Dutch on a Mother's Day card. And... a drawing. Download and let your kid(s)…
Keukenhof Gardens open till May 18th
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Keukenhof Gardens open from today till May 16th

Enjoy the fabulous sea of flowers of Keukenhof Gardens. With 32 hectares and approximately 7 million flower bulbs Keukenhof is the world’s largest flower garden and probably the most beautiful spring park in the world.  Keukenhof Gardens…
Linnaeushof, Europe's biggest playground, is open
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Linnaeushof, Europe's biggest playground is open again

Speelparadijs Linnaeushof: the biggest playground of Europe! So close! Linnaeushof is located in Bennebroek, a 15 minute drive from Haarlem and Leiden, just some more from Amsterdam and The Hague.  During the whole season (April till…
Toddler Tips: The “No!” Phase

Toddler Tips: The “No!” Phase

Your toddler is developing at a very fast pace. One day they he is a helpless little baby, not being able to communicate effectively and making an effort to crawl, and the other he can suddenly walk, talk and make choices. Well, it’s not that…
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…
4 & 5 May: Remembrance Day and Liberation Day (Photo: Melanie Caitlin)
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4 & 5 May: Remembrance Day and Liberation Day 2015

The Netherlands is unique among the other European countries in having two national ceremony days originating from the Second World War: Remembrance Day – ‘Dodenherdenking’ and Liberation Day – ‘Bevrijdingsdag’. On 4 May there…
makeup
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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…
Dutch lessons for kids on funny DVDs - watch this video: animals
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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…
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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…
Circus Tricks - How do you juggle ex-pat life, children and still try to follow your dream? (Illustrations by Sarah-Leigh Wills and copyright Rembrandt & Kiki 2014)
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Circus Tricks - How do you juggle ex-pat life, children and still try to follow your dream?

Jane Archer-Wilms, British ex-pat, explains how she puts pen to paper, publishes and promotes in between the pooey nappies, playdates and pick-ups. Breed. This was the standard answer if you asked the 16 year old me what I wanted to do…
Book Review: “Rembrandt and Kiki Move to the Netherlands” / “Rembrandt and Kiki Verhuizen naar Nederland”
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Book Review: “Rembrandt and Kiki Move to the Netherlands” / “Rembrandt and Kiki Verhuizen naar Nederland”

This new book on the bilingual block is the first of a planned series written in both Dutch and English. It tells the story of red headed twins, Kiki and Rembrandt, who move from England to the Netherlands. They have a Dutch mother and their…
October children's month: more tips
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October children's month: more tips

October is children's month in Haarlem In addition to the 7 tips that I gave you last week, in the Brochure Oktober Kindermaand 2014 of the Gemeente/Municipality of Haarlem there are much more. Below, a selection of them. Every…
Could parental leave be why Dutch kids are the world’s happiest?
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Could parental leave be why Dutch kids are the world’s happiest?

Unicef calls the Dutch the happiest children in the world and they rank second in the OECD for life/work balance. How big a factor is parental leave? Robbin Haasnoot, 33, greets his daughter and wife as they return from swimming. It’s…
Primary school in the Netherlands (Photo: Arianna Ardia)
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Primary school in the Netherlands

Compulsory education under Dutch law applies to children of all nationalities from 5 to 18 years who are residing in the Netherlands. Primary school starts at the age of four and is obligatory from five years old. In this article a basic explanation…
Being a Third Culture Kid - Part 1: The Challenges (Photo: Chaud)
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Being a Third Culture Kid - Part 1: The Challenges

Do you have small children and are you thinking of moving abroad? Did you shift between cultures as a child? Are your children spending a significant part of their development years in a culture that isn’t their original one? If any of the…
12 things parents raising bilingual children need to know (Photo: Rachel Ranting)

12 things parents raising bilingual children need to know

1 – It doesn’t happen by magic Children do not become bilingual “by magic”. There is a persistent myth claiming that “children are like sponges when it comes to language” and that they will learn all languages they hear regularly…
How to fit into Dutch society, have a home birth (Photo: Sofeminine)
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How to fit into Dutch society, have a home birth

The Shallow Man, after ten years in the Netherlands has learned many things about the Nederlandse samenleving. One of the things that has puzzled both myself and many other expats is why Dutch women are so loud. There have been many theories…
Dutch crèches refusing non-vaccinated children
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Dutch crèches refusing non-vaccinated children

At least 5 crèches in the Netherlands now refuse children who have not been vaccinated, according to a survey conducted by RTL News. Of 560 daycare organizations that responded to RTL’s questions about vaccination policies, 118 said…
Clothing industry revises children's sizes (Photo: NOS)
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Clothing industry revises children's sizes

Dutch children are on average 2 kilos heavier than they were 12 years ago, and their waists are 4 cm thicker, according to research institute TNO. "The current children sizes, of 12 years ago, are too small nowadays. Children have become…
Duch toddlers' songs - Olifantje in het bos

Dutch toddlers' songs - Olifantje in het bos

Olifantje in het bos Laat je mamma toch niet los! Anders raak je de weg nog kwijt, en dan krijg je later spijt. Olifantje in het bos Laat je mamma toch niet los!   Don’t know the music? Our mini members Luca & Laura…
English lessons to bilingual children in Haarlem and surroundings (Photo: Gerlinde de Haas)
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English lessons to bilingual children in Haarlem and surroundings

Haarlem is a great place to grow up for children and although there are many internationals living in Haarlem, there is currently no international education in Haarlem. Once at school, multilingual families often experience that the primary…
Five forms of child care in the Netherlands - Day care

Five forms of childcare in the Netherlands - Part 1: Day care

Are you expecting your first child soon? And are you looking for high-quality childcare for your baby? Or are you an expat family that has arranged childcare already, but would you like to reconsider whether this form of care still fits you…
New rules for day care tax reduction in 2014 (Photo: Arianna Ardia)
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New rules for day care tax reduction in 2014

Working and having or expecting to have kids at the day care in 2014? Be aware that from 2014 there are new rules for the Childcare Payment Request to have tax reduction. If you are working and paying taxes for childcare in the Netherlands…
4 & 5 May: Remembrance Day and Liberation Day (Photo: Melanie Caitlin)
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4 & 5 May: Remembrance Day and Liberation Day

The Netherlands is unique among the other European countries in having two national ceremony days originating from the Second World War: Remembrance Day – ‘Dodenherdenking’ and Liberation Day – ‘Bevrijdingsdag’. On 4 May there…
Flower Parade Bollenstreek 2014 (Photo: Arianna Ardia)
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Flower Parade Bollenstreek 2014

The Bloemencorso Bollenstreek, or Flower Parade of the Bollenstreek (Bulbs Area) is one of the most famous parades in the world. More than a million people come to see the beautiful flower praalwagens (floats). The Flower Parade Bollenstreek…
The government has extended the leave regulation (Picture: Arianna Ardia)
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The government has extended the leave regulation

If a mother dies during giving birth to her child, the father will get from now on her maternity leave. This should ensure that the newborn can count on the care of a parent in the first period of his life. This plan of the Minister of Social…
Striptease as company outing of day care in Aalsmeer
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Striptease as company outing of day care in Aalsmeer

Day care teachers enjoying together a striptease of a tattooed male specie. Funny? Maybe, but as a mum of 3 todds my first thought was: not mine! Day care KieKeBoe in Aalsmeer held a particular company outing: a striptease. At the end of…
Duinrell: a fun day out or family vacation
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Duinrell: a fun day out or family vacation

Duinrell is an amusement park located in Wassenaar, close to The Hague and Leiden, approximately 40 minutes driving from Haarlem. It’s wonderfully located in the forest and dunes and nearby a wide beach and the park itself is one of the most…