How long does it take to get settled when you move somewhere new? I think it’s different for everyone and every place. Personally, I usually have everything out of boxes and in their place within the first two days. I am crazy that way. I get very anxious if things are in a cluttered mess around me. This move has made me really take a step back and embrace the chaos of moving and not being perfectly settled within my normal timeframe. After all, we didn’t move just down the street. Things are getting there though. Z’s room is finished and our room will be there this weekend. I guess I could spend all day working on the house, or I could do what we came here to do. Relax and spend time together as a family. Rob’s new work schedule allows us to spend mornings exploring or playing with Z, something we didn’t have a lot of time for at home.
So I don’t mind that there are things we still need or clothes still in suitcases from when we moved, because we got to take a bike ride to Kasteel De Haar, Kidz city, and spend a weekend in Belgium with great friends.
Order is important, but so is laughter, adventure and seeing the look of awe on Z’s face when he saw a castle for the first time. Life moves quickly, I don’t want to miss something because I was to busy making sure my house is perfect.
Kaasteel De Haar was amazing. The grounds were beautiful, the castle had been preserved the way it was. It was a LONG bike ride to get there, an hour and a half to be exact. The directions said 30 minutes. I think they meant that for Dutch riders, not us Americans who just leisurely rode our bikes around our neighborhood in Charleston. It was a long tough ride, there were times we got off and walked our bikes. I didn’t think we were ever going to get there, I was getting so frustrated. Then I looked up and we were biking through this amazing countryside. We found this little village that we would have never found if we were not on bikes. We stopped had a lovely brunch complete with prosecco. Those bubbles were delightful at that moment. It truly was breathtaking when we pulled up to the castle.
A few days later we decided that we needed to do something specifically for kids. So we took Z to Kidzcity. We had no clue what to expect. It was incredible. There was a castle that you have to climb up to. There were bumper cars, a balloon ride, mazes with ball pits, a train ride, a carousel and all of this was indoors. There was also a cafe and bar for parents, which was nice because the only thing we could do besides sit and wait for z to come running over to go to the next ride was a have a beer while we waited. Did I mention that it was 8 Euro for rob and I and Z was free, once you pay to get in that’s it, the rides are free. What a concept.
Belgium was amazing. We went last year to Brussels and while I loved it, we were excited to see where our friends Veronica and Jason lived. Genk was a cute town. We went to visit because Veronica had an Ariel performance and we wanted to cheer her on. We arrived Saturday afternoon, and had dinner and went bowling. We were the loudest ones at the bowling alley if you know me and Veronica you would not be surprised. Sunday we went to the market where V and her girls were performing. The market wasn’t like you think, it was a huge flea market. People were set up ALL over the centre and were selling everything from toys, and books, to trinkets and clothes. We walked around for a bit, then, at noon, it was time for V’s performance. We all were in awe as she gracefully (even after being stung by a wasp) danced through the air on silk ribbons. She was incredible. It inspired me. I knew I wanted to focus more on my yoga practice but had been too scared to go to a class. So thanks V, I came home and went to my first class and it was amazing. Z even ask if he could have his own yoga mat.
We are so lucky to have friends like Veronica and Jason a few hours away. I can’t wait to plan a trip together.
This past weekend we wanted to explore more of the Netherlands since we had gone to Germany and Belgium the past two weekends. So we decided we would take Z to one of our favorite cities here, Zandvort aan Zee. While we would have loved to take Z to the beach there, we didn’t get to go down because the weather was not cooperating with us. So we had lunch, where these gentlemen sitting next to us immediately turned to us and said “Americans!” We confirmed we were in fact from the US, to which they replied: “WTF is going on over there!?” We smiled and said “no clue”. I mean we know but we were not wanting to get into that conversation at the time, so we smiled and tried to change the subject. When we finished our lunch I paid a visit to my favorite coffee shop, Yanks. It was nice to be somewhere familiar. Then I met Rob and Z at Rob’s favorite spot in Zandvoort, Circus. It’s an arcade for kids downstairs and a casino for adults upstairs. We got caught in a crazy hail storm that seemed it was never going to end, so we made a run for the train station to come home, it was quite the day!
I had noticed a sign on my way home from yoga for a mussel festival on Sunday. I was bummed about missing the oyster roast back home, but this could make up for it. So we went and it was great! AS most things here go it was gratis (free) to go and you just pay for what you want. They had bounce houses, face painting, bier, wine and mussels. Something for all of us. Z immediately made friends and they were so kind to him, it made my heart smile. Rob and I sat watching Z play while we enjoyed a portion of mussels (4 euro each) and a bottle of wine (20 euro). We even met another American, who chatted with us while our kids played. It was nice to meet someone in our city who had experienced everything we are now.
So while there may still be clothes in suitcases because we don’t have a dresser yet. We are doing what we came to do. Explore, travel, and of course, yoga.
Stayed tuned for more adventured of Rob, Z and I.