There are many aspects of living outside your birth country that can be unsettling, foreign or hard to adjust to but forging new relationships in a language not your own is certainly top of my list. Using a second language, it is hard to convey a real sense of yourself to those around you. Sarah… Continue reading Moving Abroad and Losing My Voice
Nearly nineteen years living in the Netherlands and I live my daily life in Dutch. Would I call myself fluent? No, nee, absoluut niet. So when can you think of yourself as fluent? This post was prompted by this tweet. What does Fluent Mean? When a person is fluent, they can speak a language easily,… Continue reading When Can You Call Yourself Fluent in a Language?
Living in the Netherlands means you'll eventually take on Dutch habits. Here are five simple ways to adjust to Dutch life. Talk Like the Dutch The Dutch may have an excellent command of English, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't attempt to speak Dutch. No one is saying it's easy, but making an effort does count.… Continue reading 5 Dutch Habits You Need to Adopt to Adapt
Do you prefer to be called mama or papa, like the Dutch use, or the terms in your native language? In my English case, this would be mummy. A Bilingual Household I speak English to my sons. The idea was always that they would then speak English back to me. It's an ongoing battle experiment. However,… Continue reading I’m a Dutch Mama Not an English Mummy
Last month I published a blog post which threw up the question whether making local friends in the Netherlands is easy to do. The resounding response was no, not really. Luckily, there was also positivity from some thrown in for good measure. Mixed Feelings About Making Friends With the Locals Some of you indicated that making… Continue reading How to Make Dutch Friends (No It’s Not Easy)
I have once more been let loose on the Dutch Jumbo supermarket app. Oh lachen. My last attempt to use the voice activated shopping list caused my three Dutch sons to almost wet themselves with laughter. Well, I've done it again. This time around it was sweet juicy orange fruit that caused the giggles. And yes,… Continue reading Mandarijnen! How Difficult Can it Be?
In response to an article I wrote for The Telegraph back in 2010 one helpful reader suggested that living in the Netherlands was easy because it is just like Britain. You can speak English and the culture is the same. He's an idiot. The Netherlands is different and if you want to lead a happy life… Continue reading Moving to the Netherlands – It’s Different So You Need to Adapt