Today I returned to the US after having coffee with Marco and Jansie this morning. It was quite the week. Similar to the late December trip to Holland, I wasn’t feeling well at all this week. I had to make a trip to the Dutch doctor who prescribed a course of antibiotics. Luckily today things were looking a little bit better.
Yesterday we visited Jansie at the Hoornsche Hoeve and fed the animals. We also had a pannekoek dinner bij het Mussennest.
The flight back to the US will be a long one as I’m flying through San Francisco. Monday is back to work and next Friday is the start of the summer break for Roos and Alex. Almost 12 weeks of no school coming up.
It is hard to believe that it is already 4.5 months since I was last in The Netherlands. Originally I had hoped to go in March to celebrate Jansies 81st birthday but it was very hectic working on the business plan for a new cancer research center in Irvine. The final presentation for this was on May 16 and as soon as I got home from that, I started packing for my flight to Amsterdam the next day. I arrived in Wapenveld around noon today. Jansie was doing well, we had a cup of coffee together and then went out for a walk on the market in Zwolle. The weather was very nice. In the late afternoon I did start to get tired and decided to head to my hotel. I decided to change things up in terms of hotel and found a nice place in Schiphorst called the Havixhorst. It seems very quiet and calm and that is exactly what I am after today.
After several months on a learners permit and many hours practice driving, Roos is now an officially licensed driver. This week she passed her practical exam / driving test at the DMV. We now need to decide what her first car will be and equally important, how she will pay for the insurance 🙂
The last few weeks have been very busy. At work there are a number of large projects that are happening in parallel and all need to wrap up for a middle of May Board meeting. The largest being the financial analysis on the opening of a new cancer treatment and clinical research facility in Irvine. Today though I finally had some time to go for a hike in the Canyon which still looks gorgeous because of the wet winter. I also booked my tickets to visit Jansie: leaving the day after the Board meeting. Marco and family will also be in Holland that same time… looking forward to see my little cousins.
In the morning Rusty dropped by with a bag of donuts from Dunkin to congratulate Alexandra on her 15th birthday. We sang Happy Birthday and in the early afternoon we made our way to Benihana, a Japanese style restaurant to have a birthday brunch. Alex brought one of her friends along as well.
Once back home it was time to unpack gifts and eat some cake. Alex, like Roos-Marijn this year, had also opted to go for the Donut Cake and mom delivered. Sadly the “5” candle was missing so Alex only had a “1” or her cake. Alex got bath bombs and bath salts from her friends and gift cards for Amazon and Starbucks.
Today is Roos-Marijn’s birthday ! We got up early today and while Roos was still in her PJ’s, we sang for her.
Around noon we drove to Camp Pendleton to go play paintball. This was something that Roos had asked about a few times. We got 500 rounds of ammo each and played on 4 different stages including one with old military tanks and helicopters. It was a lot of fun and everybody got hit multiple times. Roos was wearing Mascha’s old military jacket.
At night we went for sushi dinner tonight and back home Roos got her cake: a donut cake special put together by mom.
The end of the season for waterpolo is here and it is celebrated with a girls versus parents match and a banquet. The coach has collected the stats for the season and Lexi ranked on the top for attempts at goal (51) and goals (43) this year. She was ahead of her friend Marley who had 36 goals.
Lexie won the award for the best defensive player .. we are still trying to figure that one out.
It has been fairly cold and rainy this winter in Southern California. The drought conditions from the last several years are now virtually gone, although they have been replaced with larger wildfires in the summer and mudslides. Yesterday however was something new for us as well: Snow in Los Angeles and Orange County. As close as a few miles from my house there was actual snow although at higher altitudes there has always been visual snow on the mountains around Los Angeles.
The picture below was taken at work earlier last week and shows the mountains