Saturday, May 11, 2002

Here we are on the eve of Mother's Day. Interestingly, Mother's Day falls on the same day in the US as it does in Holland. The fact that Mother's Day is celebrated in so many countries, made me wonder about its history.

I haven't really kept up with my blog since Tuesday, because not a whole lot of interesting stuff happened. I keep following the story about Pim Fortuyn in Holland. And I've wondered what it is, that makes someone popular like Princess Diana or Pim Fortuyn and makes thousands of people turn out for their funerals. It's a certain charisma, something rarely seen both in the English and in the Dutch society, both quite reserved and "down to earth".

After the gym today, I went shopping with my mom. I went for a dress and came home with 3 pair of capri pants and 2 sweaters. Hmmmm! I'm wearing the most flamboyant combination of those now: a yellow, orange and fuhsia sweater with orange capri's. I love colorful clothing! This season's fashions are definitely that!

After shopping, the kids and I sat on our front stoop and watched Rick mow the lawn ;). Those moments always yield the best conversations with the kids and I'm all up to date on their lives again!

Then we got ready for dinner, Saskia went to play at a friend's house, while the oldest 2 and Rick and I went to Sweetwater Tavern.

Spring is such a super nice season! And we're having a nice long one this year, normally it's much warmer in May already.

Monday, May 06, 2002

Strong emotions today and suddenly I felt so much closer to my country of birth again and ached for it. Everyone has likely read the stories about the resurgence of right wing parties in Europe. Haider in Austria, Le Pen in France and Holland had its own right winger, Pim Fortuyn. Had, because today he was gunned down and died of his wounds.

The Dutch are in shock. Many did not agree with this man's views, but the fact, that someone gets murdered by gunshots in the Netherlands is a rarity in itself. Let alone a (despite all the controversy) popular politician, who, in just 9 days (the election is May 15th), might have come from nothing and surfaced as the biggest political party in the Netherlands. One of the major Dutch newspapers ran an article just this morning, claiming he might just be prime minister if the polls were right.

And now he's dead. The suspect is a Dutch man. No motive so far.

We have a Dutch satellite channel here and we watched the Dutch news tonight. The Dutch are very shaken by this event. Supporters and opposers alike agreed, "this" did not happen in their country. And now it has.

Sunday, May 05, 2002

Wow, suddenly it's 4 days later! Amazing how the time flies! Yesterday we said goodbye to Mark again. It wasn't as hard a goodbye as the last time, because I think Kai is realizing, that he will see Mark again. We had a wonderful week with him, Kai and he finished a huge Lego project yesterday.

Yesterday we ate a full American breakfast at IHOP, I had their nut and grain pancakes with a banana. Yum! After that, we went to Target, where Mark and Saskia got Spongebob Squarepants socks ;).

After dinner, we dropped Mark off at the airport and then had a quiet evening at home.

Today we're hoping to go bike shopping for the kids. Both Kai and Katja have way outgrown their bikes and we're hoping to go biking more this summer, now that they're old enough to have some stamina. There are some beautiful trails in the area, so I'm looking forward to explore some of them.

Since it is such gorgeous weather today (I think I'll go for a power walk today outside!), I thought I'd share some cheerful sites: Smileys, smileys and more smileys!