Wednesday, October 15, 2014

A Visit to Oostvaardersplassen

Don't ask me how to pronounce the location - I can't.  At least not yet.  But in our little guide on Almere (where we originally were thinking of living and where the kids go to school), there was information about this area known as Oosvaardersplassen.  Co-workers of Josh's had also mentioned it. It is a bird sanctuary and wildlife reserve.  In case you are interested, here is their website:

Anyways, we've been really lucky that after our first 2 weeks here where we had rain every single day, the last 5 or so had been really nice weather.  We have to get accustomed to seasons again and that it does make sense to be wearing a sweater in October (it did not make sense in August, however) but overall, the weather has been really nice.

We've been limited in our exploring because of Josh's knee.  Totally understandable.  And you know, given that we've only been here 7 weeks, we haven't done all that badly in the things we've accomplished.  But we knew that with Josh's surgery coming up that week that we would be back again at square one with how much walking he would be able to do over the next few weeks.

And since he had been able to walk a little bit more over the last 2 or 3 weeks, we decided to do a little exploring out in nature at Oosvaardersplassen.  The kids didn't want to go at first but once they got there, they loved it.  They loved running along the paths and trying to find animals (we think we spotted a deer in the distance) and birds. There were tons and tons of birds of all kinds.  We had hoped to see wild horses that we'd heard about but unfortunately no luck there.  But that's ok - there is always next time.

Finding sticks and anything else they can turn into weapons... typical boys in nature.

It's like a jungle!

My three boys

If you look straight out in the middle, I'm pretty sure that is a deer laying down not far from the water.

Brotherly "love"

Aidan found a toad... it then pooped in his hand.  He happened to think it was cool - I kept thinking how long it would be til we found a bathroom so he could wash his hands!

Too sunny in Holland???

Before leaving we bought a bird house and some bird seed.  We'd never had a bird house before and now that we live back in the surburbs again, we thought it was a fun thing to add to our new house. The kids have been fascinated watching the birds eat the food.  We've already been on pinterest on how to make our own bird feeders for once the ready made feeder we bought runs out.  They love watching the birds near the house and are curious as to when one will make a nest - I've told them it might not be until spring at this point since many will be flying south for the winter.  But that we'll have to check back regularly to see and maybe in the spring we'd even find some eggs - you never know!!

We did decide that this is a place best explored by bicycle.  It huge and there is only so much one can do on foot.  But for us, it was a good fit for that day.  We got outside in nature, enjoyed the beautiful weather and some exercise to boot.  Not to mention, it was a pretty place to explore!!  We will definitely go back in the future once Josh is recovered.  Maybe the next time we'll get to see those horses!


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