A look back at 2015: Part III

2015review

Hey guys! Welcome to the third and final installment of our trip down memory lane! I am in awe of the memories we created together in one short year!

2016 already has a lot in store for us – in which I will elaborate once the details are finalized, so be sure to stay tuned!!

Let’s continue where we left off, shall we?

Florida

At the end of July, The Mr gave me an EPIC surprise. He knew I was starting to get really homesick so he told me that we will be joining the rest of the family in Florida in just 4 weeks!

I can’t even put into words how joyful it was to see Ittybot interacting with the rest of the family. I was worried that he would be attached to mommy, but nope, he peaced out as soon as he could!

Leiden

I have to admit coming back to Holland was really tough for me. But this little face makes he so happy – as long as we are together, we can get through it!

Amsterdam

Wandering around Amsterdam on a crisp, fall afternoon.

BelgiumFam

In November, we traveled back to Belgium to celebrate my beautiful aunt’s birthday.

Bruges

We have always talked about going to Bruges and we finally made it! Unfortunately, it rained the entire time but that didn’t put a damper Ittybot’s mood!

iceland

Some people would call us crazy for traveling to Iceland in December. Well, yeah we are. Iceland was bitter cold and it was FREAKING FANTASTIC! I’ve said this time and time again, the pictures of Iceland just don’t do it justice!

Minnesota

Iceland was a quick stopover before heading to Minnesota to see the family. I chose a picture of us gathered in the kitchen because that’s what we love doing most – eating. We will find any and every excuse to eat, eat, eat!!

And that brings us to today…we leave for Madrid early tomorrow morning for New Years with The Mr’s side of the family. Squeezing in one last trip before 2016 and it should be a great one!

I hope everyone had a wonderful 2015 and lots of luck for 2016! Lots of love from the bots!

Joop Joooooop

Dana-Signature

 

Advertisements

A look back at 2015: Part II

2015review

Lets pick up right where we left off on the last blog!

LisseNL
Lisse, Netherlands

After we recovered from our jetlag, we set out to see if there were any tulips left in the gardens nearby. We only found one garden that was packed of tulips but even the sparse gardens still looked incredible.

Marrakech

In June, we set out on a 2 week trip to celebrate my 30th birthday. First up, Marrakech.

Milan.jpgA quick pit stop in Milan, Italy.

LakeGarda
Lake Garda, Italy

Head stand on top of a mountain? Check.

Venice

Venice, Italy – Seriously, the city looks like it does in the postcards…

Eze

Eze, France

Monaco.jpg

Monaco

Nice

My loves above Nice, France. Love!

Cannes

Cannes, France

LeidenNL

The sunsets behind our apartment during the summers are incredible!

AugPark2015-3

Cherish moments, not things. These boys give me a wealth of memorable memories. I’m thankful for them each and every day….

Wow, this is much longer than anticipated…instead of inundating you with even more pictures, I will do a 3rd post…stay tuned for a third and final post!

Dana-Signature

 

A look back at 2015: Part I

 

2015review

The year is quickly coming to a close, seriously, where did time go?! As of late, my Facebook timeline has been flooded with year in reviews. So I suppose it’s about that time of the year where we take a look back at what happened in our lives over the past 12 months…

LeidenNLJan2015
Leiden, Netherlands

It just so happened that the weather gods were smiling upon us and gave us a beautiful day in January. On nice days, we like to go to La Place near the market for lunch. You get a beautiful birds eye view of the charming city from 4 stories above.

alicante
Alicante, Spain

Before Ittybot turned two, we wanted to jet set to one more country before he would cost an entire plane ticket. We decided to venture to Alicante, Spain to visit The Mr’s side of the family.

altea
Altea, Spain

The family took us to a nearby town called, “Altea”. Altea is a cute and quaint little town along the coast with whitewashed buildings throughout. We weren’t there for long but we loved shopping the charming boutiques and the bakeries were delicious!

pturns2

pturns2.1

On February 22nd, our little bot officially entered the terrible twos.

SONY DSC

March, 2015 marked 10 years for Tim & Noot!

Ghent
Ghent, Belgium

Before Tim & Noot’s anniversary dinner, we explored Ghent for a few hours.

KeukenhofApril

Keukenhof_Flowers

Early April, we paid a visit to the Keukenhof gardens. We had to go a little earlier this year because we had an unexpected trip to China coming up!

Shanghai001
Shanghai, China
YuYuanShanghai
Yu Yuan Garden

The Mr was summoned to do some work in China and we HAD to tag along. It was an opportunity of a lifetime!

Sanya
Sanya, China

The next stop on his work trip was Sanya, China. One of the guys had a great hook-up on a yacht so we all took a break for an afternoon – baller style.

TianTanBuddha
Tian Tan Buddha AKA Big Buddha

HongKong

Hongkong002

We decided to hop over to Hong Kong after his business trip. Because I mean, WHY NOT?!

Stay tuned for part II!

Dana-Signature

 

 

Traveling to Dubai with a baby or toddler!

Dubai with a toddler

Dubai may not be the first destination that comes to mind for a family vacation. Especially when you’re traveling with a 1 year old! But we like to be adventurous so we took our Ittybot to Dubai and the Maldives in one trip!

Surprisingly, Dubai is probably one of the most baby friendly cities we have visited! There was so much to do and so much to see for the entire family that our 5 days there seemed way too short. You can get the full Dubai low-down here.

So lets get onto the real reason you’re here. I will break down the main things moms look for in a vacation destination.

Stroller friendly – Everything is so far apart that you basically cab everywhere (or you can do the big bus tour like we did) but once you are at your destination, it is fairly stroller friendly. There are usually large crowds of people that you would have to maneuver through but that’s a small problem.

Restaurants – The city itself has a heavy western influence so you will find lots of restaurants that you would find in the US. So of course, they were all pretty child friendly. From nice comfortable child seats, to child friendly menus, and those amazing cups with lids to prevent your little one from spilling all over the place. It’s the little things 🙂

Diaper changing stations – This is probably my favorite part of Dubai. Seems silly but when you live in Europe and have to change your baby in a tiny, dirty stall or even in their stroller, a formal changing room is the ultimate luxury. The larger malls have changing rooms that is like a retreat for mothers and their little ones. It’s sprayed with the most amazing light scented perfumes, there are toys for them to play with, the works.

At the very minimum, most of the places you would visit have a changing table for you. Except maybe the beach but that’s a given!

Activities – We used our Hyatt points and stayed at the amazing Grand Hyatt Dubai. The service and the pools were amazing. We almost didn’t want to leave the hotel at all. The staff was amazing with Ittybot. He was given lots of attention and treats – which was probably his favorite part.

There were plenty of activities in Dubai for the little ones. There is even an aquarium within the mall! Finding activities for your family won’t be a problem. Your problem will be narrowing it down to a few!

We highly recommend doing a trip to the desert. We did a low-key jeep drive to the desert with little bits of crazy driving through the dunes which Ittybot loved. He also loved the show that the staff put on which included lots of music and performances. Definitely a treat for the entire family!

FunTours trip to the Desert in Dubai!
FunTours trip to the Desert in Dubai!

Transportation – This is probably my only gripe with Dubai. Carseats aren’t required in Dubai! Much like Thailand, kids are free to roam about the car as they please. There are however, pink taxis that will bring a carseat at your request (but those require a lot of planning ahead and it’s not always available). We did the big bus tour most of the time but the few times we needed to take a cab Ittybot had to sit in between us buckled in SNUG. We only did this for very short rides but it was nerve wracking every single time.

I hope this was useful for those planning a trip to Dubai OR for those considering a trip. It was such an amazing trip and we are so excited to show Ittybot the pictures and footage from the trip. Hopefully, it will inspire him to go back on his own one day!

Dana-Signature

Vloggin’!: Keukenhof 2015

On Easter, we had to venture out to Keukenhof a little bit early due to our upcoming trip to China. Last year, we waited too long because of guests. One of these years we will get it just right!

As suspected, some of the flowers were pre-bloomed but there we still saw more flowers than the previous year. Nevertheless, it was gorgeous in some areas!