As the holiday season approaches, it’s important to know that it’s alright if you’re not feeling the joy that you’re “supposed to”. Though the holidays are meant to be a time of joy, the pressures and emotions that come with trying to fulfill that expectation can sometimes have the opposite effect. Add to that the isolation of being an expat, parenting responsibilities, workplace demands, social obligations… This can quickly become a formula for the worst time of the year. Read on to see what you can do to help relieve those holiday blues.
Uprooting your life and moving abroad is often an isolating and all-consuming experience, no matter how many times you may have done it before. The highs are high, but the lows are sometimes lower than you could have ever fathomed.
Change is the only constant, as the trite cliche goes, but when life throws changes at you left and right, there’s little comfort to be found in dusty old cliches. That’s where I found myself before my conversation with Eva Amaral – weary and a tad emotionally disheveled after yet another move. Albeit, this time it was within the Netherlands, but far enough from Delft to register as a move away from “home.”
Little did I know that an interview in which I was supposed to be finding out about Eva’s coaching business was just what I needed to go back to the core of what I want. Because that’s what Eva does, with warmth, honesty and a gentle nudge – she helps her clients make sense of their values in the midst of topsy-turvy lives.
Next in our Delftian entrepreneur series, Delft MaMa Natalia Moreno sat down with Gemma Rubio, the energetic entrepreneur behind Define The Fine. Join us as Gemma talks about her business and how she strives for a healthy work-family balance, especially as a single mother.
Increasing numbers of refugees entering the EU has sparked debates about helping them to successfully resettle into their new communities. Last year, Delft Mama Julia Candy interviewed some refugee families about their integration and how other Mamas could help on a more individual basis. Join us as Delft Mama Hagar Taha provides an overview of some organizations that serve refugees. She also shares an interview with the head of one such organization, Unity in Diversity.
Welcome to the first blog post after the summer hiatus! Caroline Kappers brings us a thought-provoking piece about choosing to have, not have, or stop having, children. Each couple’s choice is an extremely personal one, and I thank Caroline for being open about their choice. Grab a cup of your favorite beverage and happy reading. We look forward to hearing from you about this topic in the comments!
Agashnee Bodos stepped in as coordinator of Delft MaMa’s revamped SLiDe programme earlier this year. SLiDe, short for “Soft Landing in Delft”, was originally designed to provide mentorship for newcomers to Delft in order to ease their transition. We’ve asked Agashnee to explain a bit about the revamped programme, what she expects to see in the future, and how you can help.
At the moment Agashnee is on maternity leave with her first child. We wish her all the best, and look forward to her return later in the year.
In May, Meredith Mull Aggarwal replaced Marie Kummerlowe as the new Delft MaMa Chairwoman. Delft MaMa has made many changes in the past few years as it takes on more activities serving the expat community in Delft. What does it take to steer the DMM ship? Lynette Croxford sat down with both women to talk about their experiences “behind the wheel”. You can also see Marie’s recap of 2018 here. I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to seeing what the new year will bring. I wish the best of luck for both women in their roles!
Reading this piece, I’m struck by the similarities in behavior between my own multilingual 4 year old and Kathryn’s Lucas. Particularly when I misunderstand something V has said, hurt expression on her face, she throws up her arms and says, “NOOO, Mama! I MEEEEEEEANNNNN….!” and gives a big sigh, looking around as if the right words will pop out of thin air. Our bi/multilingual children are growing up with amazing elastic minds with the ability to move between languages. It doesn’t mean, however, that communication is smooth from the start. How many of you can relate? Join us as Kathryn Roscoe shares some of her own amusing observations raising a bilingual child.
Have you ever found yourself in a position where you need legal advice, but didn’t know where to go? Legal Mom Marisa Monteiro Borsboom writes about one such agency in the Netherlands, the Juridisch Loket, that provides free legal advice. The free advice, however, comes with caveats. Read on to learn how to get the most out of this agency if you ever need to.
In our blogiversary post last month, Tarja mentioned that Marie’s post about learning Dutch in Delft should be reposted (and updated) every once in a while. There are always new people coming in, and many struggle with the same basic questions, among which is learning the language, she wrote.
There are resources for everyone, no matter their level of Dutch. So, grab a cup of your favorite beverage and join us as we revisit how to learn Dutch in Delft. Veel leesplezier!