68 Years Of Great Living: Happy Birthday Terry

Today is a day to celebrate.  Terry Christenberry turns 68.  He lives a wonderful life, filled with travel, family and friends. IMG_4393 France IMG_3516 Great Britain DSC_0861 Cuba IMG_3584 Amsterdam It is, truly, a wonderful life.  Congratulations Mr. T.  You are the best. May your future be joyful and long.  May your family and friends love you as much as you love them.

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The Beauty Of Amsterdam

We spent Thanksgiving in Amsterdam this year with the Rooijens, Meg and Jake.  It was a wonderful holiday.  We were fortunate to spend this uniquely U.S. holiday with our Dutch family.  We did not know it would be the last holiday we would share with Rudy. But it gives us quite special family memories.

Amsterdam is a city of great beauty.  the historic center represents elegance and power.

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Even during Amsterdam’s winter season, flowers are in abundance.  The varieties are endless and the prices are quite modest.

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Laura, Michel and Sophia live in a lovely urban apartment, with restaurants, markets and retail shopping to rival New York or Paris.

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In the center of town, adjacent to the canals, we came upon this wonderful caravan which is, or could be, a home for a Roma/gypsy family.

While nothing like the kind of housing we have come to expect in the states.  It is quite lovely in its uniqueness.

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The Canals of Amsterdam

Nothing reflects the personality of Amsterdam more than the canals in the heart of the historic city.  Built during the Dutch Golden Age of the 17th century, the canals of Amsterdam are a tourist wonder and a local delight.  The canals are also a constant reminder that in a city that sits below sea level, the sea and the land are intertwined.

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The canals were placed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List effective 2010.  Neighborhoods surround the canals.  Swans swim on the canals.  House boats on the canals are the homes of some Dutch residents.

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Many of the homes surrounding the canals predate the canals themselves.  This photo reflects the elegance of one Dutch neighborhood.
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The canals extend through Amsterdam’s cultural center.

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They reflect the history of the city for locals and tourists alike.

View from the Window

View from the Window

This is the view from the window of my sister and brother-in-law’s condo in Amsterdam. We picked up the tulips for Thanksgiving from a little flower stand down the street on Beethovenstraat. Love waking up here in the morning!

Sophia Begins British School

I woke up this morning with this photograph of our granddaughter, Sophia, waiting for me in my g-mail. Labor Day weekend marks the end of summer here in the U.S.  There is no similar holiday in the Netherlands.  But the change of seasons is marked, there as here, by the beginning of school.

For Sophia that means splitting her 3 year old attention on two schools–Dutch School and British School–both located near her home in Amsterdam.  It is important to her parents that she be comfortable speaking Dutch and English.  A great way to accomplish this goal is to send her to schools where she will be encouraged to speak, read and think comfortably in both languages.  Here she is in her uniform for British School.  To Sophia, school is all about fun, friends and activity.

For the moment, we wouldn’t have it any other way.