The end is near….

Elisabeth is getting towards the end of the first term of big girl school. And she is tired. She is very tired. She is very very tired. She is very very very tired. She is tired to the stage where if she drops a pen she bursts out in tears poor little lamb.

It is hard to see her get so upset and there is not a lot I can do about it, apart from making sure she rests as much as possible and she is in bed at 7pm sharp! But even worse than this are her strops. Oh my, does she throw a strop when she is exhausted. It is hard to believe that this is the same little angel who never really had her terrible twos abd who didn’t really strop or misbehave until she was 3! And again because she is so tired it is almost impossible to calm her down and sometimes it seems best to let her get it out of her system and just make sure I’m around and ready for a cuddle when she is done.

Apart from the tiredness she is doing really well at school. As expected she is super excited about learning to read. She now reads us a story at bedtime! Last night I heard her spell her brother’s name whilst she was on the toilet. J-A-C-O-B J-A-C-O-B J-A-C-O-B so sweet!

But I tell you what, I am so glad this term is nearly over. A few more weeks until she can relax and re-energise……..ready for the next term!

So you want to be a vegan?

Well, not really. So what is your point then, I hear you ask. I tell you what my point is, my point is we eat too much meat and dairy. All of us (well apart from the veggies and vegans amongst us of course).

I was raised on a 90% vegetarian diet and I can tell you this for fact, you and your children do not need meat to grow. Those of you who know me in person are aware that I did quite well in the growing department. For the rest of you kindly reading my little blog, I am 6ft tall (that is 1.83 meters if that’s your bag), now that is a little on the tall side for a woman. Admittedly it helps that I am Dutch (we are the tallest in the world aparantly) but even for Dutch standards I am tall. Which surely proves my point quite nicely, you do not need meat to grow!

You also don’t need meat to be healthy, my mum is the proof of that. She isn’t tall, but she did suffer from high blood pressure and was put on medication which, she was told, it’s almost impossible to come off. Now, my mum is a bit like me (or I guess I’m a but like her), tell her she can’t do something and she will do anything in her power to prove you wrong. So after checking with her doctor she cut out the following foods:
– all meats
– salt (almost all cause you need a little bit)
– most dairy apart from a bit of soft cheese every now and then
– most processed foods
– most refined sugar
Now 6 months later she has not only lost nearly 2 stone (about 10kg) she has also been taken off her medication completely! Within 6 months she has brought her blood pressure down to a normal level purely by changing her diet! That’s amazing right?

So you don’t need meat to grow or be healthy. It is also very very bad for the environment and the way most animals are treated is just damn cruel! I have watched a few documentaries lately about how our food affects our lives, the lives of animals and our planet and there are bits that I just don’t want to be a part of anymore. Meat is the first thing, but also milk, cheese and eggs. I have always used free rabge egss thinking, that’s fine right? Well, I guess it is if you are happy for the little male chicks to be chucked in a massive grinder when they are still alive! If you want to know what I am talking about watch Vegucated (it’s on netflix) and is very interesting.

From childhood we have been overloaded with messages like:
“Milk makes your bones grow strong.”
“You need meat for protein.”
“Eggs are healthy.”
Our parents also grew up with these messages so it is hardly our fault that we build our diets around what we have been told is healthy. But who are these messages coming from and how factually correct are they?

It isn’t until you educate yourself properly that you can make informed decisions on what you want to feed yourself and your family. There aren’t many things we have control over in this life, but one of the things that is completely in our control is what we decide to eat.

My decision was that I wanted to cut my own meat and dairy intake by 90% and I can tell you, it isn’t only easy, it makes you feel great! I have more energy, my skin looks better, I have lost quite a bit of weight without being hungry for even a second and I feel better for choosing not to be such a big part of an industry that should be ashamed of itself!

If you want to live a long and healthy life (and who doesn’t want that) you need to start by giving your body what it needs. Make sure you know what you put in your body, read labels and if it is full of stuff you don’t recognise, don’t eat it. Don’t assume you need meat and dairy (cause you don’t) and I promise you will feel better for it!

If you want to find out more about veganism, healthy eating or how we can use nutrition to fight disease, the following documentaries are a very good place to start (all are on netflix)
– Vegucated
– Hungry for change
– Food Matters (this is my favourite and will really open your mind)

Happy eating everyone!


Jacob has finally decided to have a real go at this talking thing that we all seem to be doing. After months of just saying “ball”, “wow” and “mama” (which meant fruit, not me!) he is expanding his vocabulary.

After a 10 minute session last Friday where we discussed: “this is a banana” and “this is mama” he finally got it and he now actually calls me mama! Although he also still calls all fruit mama, but hey I can’t have everything.

He has been a very inquisitive little munchkin as well. If I had a penny for every time he points at something and says: “Whasat?” I would not have to go to work. Sometimes it is a bit tiring, most of the time it is cute and every now and then it is just hilarious.

The other day I went to the toilet and he came in with me. He was playing with some water in the sink, perfectly happy. As soon as he heard me do a wee, he turned round to look at me, pointed and shouted from the top of his lungs: “WHASAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT?!?!?!?”

Love this little man, he is so funny.

Where’s mamma?

Even though my two lovely kiddos look very much alike, they couldn’t behave more differently if they tried.

The most noticable difference at the moment is talking. Elisabeth never really did baby talk, she was almost silent until she could discuss the political situation in Africa (so to speak). She talked so well that when she was two and a half I got asked what scholl she went to (it also helped that she is rather on the tall side). Jacob on the other hand doesn’t stop jabbering, but at over 18 months he is in no hurry to start talking.

He has his own way of saying Elisabeth – Elily – and is still very keen on the words ‘wow’ and ‘ball’. But that is about it.

A few weeks ago I thought he finally started saying ‘mamma’ only to find out he was saying ‘banana’. And soon after that all fruit was ‘mamma’. Funny little man.

The other night at dinner we asked him:
– Where is Elisabeth? – Jacob points at Elisabeth.
– Where is daddy? – Jacob points at daddy.
– Where is mamma? – Jacob points at something in the conservatory and says: ‘ball!’

Ha ha, funny little man.

The First Kiss

The first time someone kisses you is always special. I remember the first kiss with my husband, it was in a nightclub in Clacton-on-Sea. This is 14 years ago and I still remember it as if it was yesterday.

Elisabeth gave slobber kisses for ages when she was little (you know the ones that are more like licking than kisses 😃). And no matter how wet and slobbery, they were lovely.

And then yesterday. Yesterday was great. Yesterday was awesome. I came home from work and gave both kiddos a cuddle. Then Jacob climbed on my lap, grabbed my face with both his hands, pulled my face towards his and gave me a big proper kiss right on the lips, and then another one, and another one and another one. My day, which didn’t start particularly well, brightened up immediately and I couldn’t stop smiling for quite some time.

I don’t think I will forget this first kiss in a hurry!

Elisabeth’s first sports day

Today was Elisabeth’s first sports day, because she goes to a pre-school which is part of a primary school she gets to enjoy a lot of the events with the big children, like sports day today.

It was a great afternoon, the whole school came out at the same time and sat on the big sports field to watch each other races. I loved how it all happened in one place so everyone watched everyone else. A great way to learn about taking turns, patiently waiting and supporting one another.

When we (my husband luckily was able to come as well) got to the field, Elisabeth was just coming out with her class. They look so little when you see them with all the bigger kiddos, even though Elisabeth is extremely tall for her age she still looked so tiny and fragile. The moment she noticed us her little face broke into a massive smile and she started waving like crazy! It was amazing.

They were all so very well behaved and they all did extremely well waiting their turn. The nursery ran (well, walked really 😂) an egg and spoon race in which Elisabeth cane second and a running race which Elisabeth won (no surprise with her long long legs 😃). She was very proud. It was tricky with Jacob because all he wants to do is run around, but I managed to see both her races and throughly enjoyed the afternoon.

Happy days.