Moving to Holland is not easy, but it's worth the effort. This blog tells the story of shifting from American life in Pittsburgh to Expat life in the Netherlands,
and all of our European adventures that follow.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

She's 1 year old!

One year ago this month, we made our big DSLR camera purchase: the Nikon D5000. (Along with a two of her close companions, the prime and wide angle lenses.)

It took hours, no days, of researching our options, and a lot of help from our great and experienced friends, to make a decision. Now that we have this camera, we really don't know how we lived without it.

Here are a couple of the websites that we used, maybe you'll also find them helpful:

With all of the practice we get during our traveling, we're getting better and better at both framing and post processing the pictures.

I look forward to capturing all of the exciting things to come in the future!


Sunday, January 9, 2011


Sjoelen (pronounced 'shoo-lun') is Dutch table shuffleboard. You slide small wooden 'stones,' or pucks, down the 2 meter board, with the goal of getting the pucks through each of the four small openings at the end. You get three turns in a row to slide the stones, then you tally your final score, with more points awarded for even distribution.

We played Sjoelen for the first time last year on New Years Eve, at Arjen's Uncle's house. This year, Arjen and Linda bought their own table for Christmas, and we have been over to play a couple times already.

The great part about this game is that anyone can play. Even their 2 & 4 year old sons can slide the stones down the board (and they are pretty darn good already).

Here's a short video of Chad playing Sjoelen, to give you an idea of how the game is played:


Here are a few more pics and video's on Flickr, both from this weekend, and from December when we were in Gouda for Gouda by Candlelight:

Sjoelen pics are at the end of this set:

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


In the winter, you will often see this traditional Dutch dish on many dinner tables in the Netherlands. Stamppot is made from a combination of mashed potatoes, and one or several added vegetables, for example kale, spinach, carrots, peas, endive, etc. It is normally served with smoked sausage (rookworst) or some other form of bacon or meat.

Ever the experimenters, and always keen to get the 'full local experience,' we took our own stab at making this traditional dish tonight. We included kale, carrots and peas in our mashed potatoes, topped with some (lean) smoked sausage and a bit of gravy. On a cold night, it really hit the spot.

Talk about comfort food!


Saturday, January 1, 2011

Gelukkig Nieuw Jaar!

2011 has come, and with it we have started (what we believe to be) our last calendar year in Holland. We aren't sure what this year has in store for us, but we're excited to find out!

Happy New Year to all of our family and friends!