The one about Albert Heijn and the sprouts …

Dear Albert Heijn,

Hi.  It’s me again.  Remember me?  I cheated on you a little while back with grocery deliveries.  It’s been a bit of an open relationship for a while, and even last week when you broke something all over my groceries and had to deliver them the next day, I was ok with this.  After all – a good relationship is about forgiveness and understanding, and open communication – and I can’t fault the service I got. (Except the mixup over payments, but hey, I’m happy to look the other way.)  Continue reading The one about Albert Heijn and the sprouts …

The one about the oliebollen …

I have to say, I love this time of year in the Netherlands.  Yes, it’s a bit miserable, rainy and starting to get cold.  But there’s one thing I love every year – the oliebollen!

Oliebollen are traditional eaten at New Year, but from the first of October stalls pop up everywhere selling the delicious, hot Dutch-style donuts.  The smell is amazing! Continue reading The one about the oliebollen …

The Official 2017 Eurovision Drinking Game.

The Official 2017 Eurovision Drinking Game. (All rights reserved)

Requirements: Alcohol. Dress up items from country of choice. Alcohol.  Eurovision Broadcast.  Alcohol.

I take no responsibility for hangovers or liver failure if you follow this to the core.  Your choice, I just make it up 😉

Download your copy here.  (Best pop it in a plastic sleeve if you’re going to play along to prevent stains and spills 😉 )

Continue reading The Official 2017 Eurovision Drinking Game.

The one about the breakup…

Dear Albert Heijn,

We need to talk.  I feel we’ve come to a point in our relationship of over 3 years where we can be honest with each other.  You’ve been there through modified bedrest,  premature deliveries and anxious parents of twins who are afraid to leave the house . You’ve come in snow, rain and heat with my crazy orders of 10,000 diapers and a bottle of milk. Most of the time you get my order right, and I get everything on my list – and I’ve forgiven you for the times that you’ve  been out of stock on toilet paper and cucumbers, forcing me to leave the comfort and safety of my house for the real world.

Things have been good between us, haven’t they?  You’ve had a loyal customer who loves your home deliveries and looks forward to the monthly delivery of all the stuff I can’t be bothered lifting or carrying home.  I’ve had some good service and who can complain when you send around that good looking delivery driver who drops the load right in your kitchen and smiles at you as he asks you to put in your PIN …

I have to admit though, my attentions have been straying.  Things are getting expensive, and I’ve been forced to look around at other options.

And then, today, I cheated on you.

I discovered someone else delivers to  my door.  They offered me free delivery on items that I actually purchase.   They had good deals.  It was all so tempting.  Cautiously,  I compared side by side on some of my regular products – and they were cheaper!  I found myself clicking and building a shopping list and then … I ordered from someone else.  But it doesn’t end there.  I realised that I had already ordered from you  the same day! What was I going to do if you met on my doorstep?  I carefully scheduled a delivery time later in  the day, and prayed that you wouldn’t meet.

You were late this  morning. Nervously I paced the kitchen, hoping that you wouldn’t meet the new supermarket in my life.  When you finally arrived, I paid quickly, ushered you out and then raced around, putting things away so there was no evidence for when the next driver arrived.

And then, the new blood came. On time.  And he was so friendly, so nice, and  so efficient, I began to fall into a trance.  Everything was in my order.

Things used to be  good  between us.  But now, you have competition.   The cliche is “It’s not you, it’s me…”.  I’m beginning to think maybe it is you …

As for next month, well, it depends on  how things go.  I’ll still pop down to you  to get the occasional  thing, but for deliveries, I’ve tasted a new world. And I liked it …

Sincerely,

Stephanie

The one about the supermarket stamps …

It’s been a while, and I apologise!  Things have been a bit hectic around here with the start of kindergarten for the girls, some medical issues, a family holiday and well, general laziness. Mostly general laziness.

I’ve talked about shopping here several times.  Mostly here and more recently, here.  And then there’s the dierenkaartjes craze.  (Which in it’s latest incarnation, dinosaur stickers I got totally sucked into because of the current love of dinosaurs here. Still have a huge bag of stickers here that noone else wants.!)

The collecting craze doesn’t only extend to trading cards for kids here.  Occasionally there’s deals where you can collect stamps for a free dinner, or a 2 for one day trip, or the one that I’m here to talk about today – plastic storage containers.  That’s right, I got sucked into the world of spaarzegels hard.

Continue reading The one about the supermarket stamps …

The one about the trip to the doctors … (again)

Given my previous experiences in blogging about doctors in this country, I really should have learned my lesson by now and stopped when I had the thought ‘Hey, this could be a super funny post!’  Continue reading The one about the trip to the doctors … (again)

The one where I became Inbuggered … finally

I started this blog nearly 4 years ago to document the move I was making to the Netherlands. Over that time, I’ve talked about learning the language, about integrating into a culture that is similar, but so different to my own.  I’ve talked about having twins, and about  my life here as an immigrant.

I really haven’t covered (at least lately) the whole process of “Inburgering”, or, as it’s known colloquially amongst some expats “Inbuggering” (you now see where the title of my blog comes from!) Continue reading The one where I became Inbuggered … finally

The one where I read a book and decided to talk about it …

First of all, let’s get one thing sorted here. I am not paid to write this review. I bought the book with my own, hard earned cash.  I won’t receive any kickbacks from writing this review.  (Well, maybe some gratitude from the contributors of the book if it sells a book or 2. ) I have friends who have contributed to this book who’ll get something out of it, of course, but for me, well, all I’ll get is a thank you and of course the experience of reading the book.  All opinions of said book in this post are my own and may or may not be influenced by a couple of glasses of wine – purchased by me with my own hard earned cash.

When you’re an expat, you hear all the stories. The good, the bad, and the ugly.  And believe me, there are some really ugly stories out there – bad guests, bad visitors, even bad doctor’s experiences.  But there’s also the stories that make you laugh, cry and empathise, because well, you’ve been there and done that as well.  It’s what makes being an expat a unique experience.  You are a first hand witness to culture shock.  Continue reading The one where I read a book and decided to talk about it …

The one with the second part to Grocery Shopping, Dutch Style … Enter the toddlers

Way back in 2012 I wrote about my adventures grocery shopping (If you’re interested, it’s here). 3 years, and 2 kids later – I thought I’d update.

Fundamentally, the process hasn’t changed. It’s still a game of tetris, it’s still to each their own and may the best shopper win.  That part will forever stay the same. I’ve learned that Hamstereen is like a suicide mission – head down, and head straight for the products you need.  Don’t look anyone in the eye and don’t forget to sharpen your elbows … Continue reading The one with the second part to Grocery Shopping, Dutch Style … Enter the toddlers

The one where I got interviewed …

.. by DutchNews.nl.  

This was loads of fun to do – especially as I got to write more about myself rather than twin wrangling/random rare conditions/parenthood/etc.

Although the title about carrots … seriously, I’m going to get some crap about that one! Haha.

Without further ado – this is the link to the article.