Sunday, 28 February 2010

Dutch Stories: Madurodam

...continued. For previous posts click HERE and HERE.

Visiting Madurodam was very impressing. And fun. Madurodam is like a museum which shows Amsterdam in miniature. That was something I don't think I've ever seen before, and it was definitely quite striking.
The day started being lots of fun. After having breakfast, we set out for a long two-to-three-hours car ride. With us came S(oldest), I. and his son. At first, the car ride promised to be boring. Sonia and I were very tired, and planned to try and sleep in the car. But it didn't work... it did for T., though!
It didn't turn out boring because out went our MP4's and we started to sing along with all the songs that played. It was so much fun!!, although I'm sure S(oldest) and I. didn't think the same... =S
It was freezing cold once we got there, but we soon warmed up walking. In Madurodam that's basically what you have to do... walk. And look and take pictures, of course. But you have to walk a lot. So you better be rested and with a mind to walk if you have to visit it! (Which, by the way, we didn't have xD) Registered & Protected

Amazing, really. There were models of every building in Amsterdam. There was an airport. The palace. The economy street. Registered & Protected

The cathedral.

The tower. The sports' center. Marketplaces, rivers, bridges, boats, aeroplanes, people. All done with such detail! Every small bit was perfectly built and painted, streets represented; there were even street lights! Registered & Protected
The funniest part of Madurodam, though, and my favourite, was "The Clown" episode. When we took a break to eat lunch, we went to an inside building, obviously (lotsa snow and cold and rain!! Brr!) It was huge, with a very tall ceiling and fans on it. Turned on. Don't ask me why, though.
(Useless bit of information, but curious, nevertheless).
Anyway, there was this puppet show for the little kids going on, and I tried to understand what the "puppeter" was saying (just invented the word, don't worry!). Obviously, I didn't understand a single thing, because it was in Dutch (duh!), but we kidded around with Sonia and laughed a bit about it, whispering funny comments about this puppet with a huge nose or whatever. You know... laughing because. Best friends together, Double Trouble! What do you expect?
Soon enough the show ended, and from behind the scenario a jolly clown appeared. He was one of the talles men I've ever seen in my life. 7 feet 6 inches, at least! (a weee exaggerated...). But definitely more than 2 meters in Spain.
He had this chubby rosy cheeks and red nose, both fake, obviously, and he was dressed in blue, white and red. I thought him pretty funny, and most of the kids did too, but T. was scared of him.
After the show he started blowing balloons up and turning them into shapes, like hearts and swords and butterflies. Sonia and I started to tease each other to go ask him for a balloon for us two, faking to be little girls. Of course, we did no such thing, but S(oldest) did ask him for a balloon for T.
The clown was hilarious. He blew a balloon, and then it "accidentally" pulled off, flying around the room. Then the clown would either pull up a surprised or a sad face, which made the little ones crack up. He would also trip over his huge shoes, and did several tricks. He was a nice clown.
Then I casually/teasingly suggested to Sonia that we should take a picture of us two with the clown (I get the craziest ideas... -.-') and the crazy girl liked the idea! So she asked Samuel to ask him if he would mind to pose with us. (I was quite embarrassed, you can imagine! What started as teasing turned out reality!)
He agreed! Sonia smiled at me mischievously, and I laughed inwardly.
The guy was so tall Sonia reached his chest. And she's a good head taller than me. So laugh if you want to, but since I'm quite short I appeared even more pettite by his size! (EMBARRASSING!)
The picture is great, though. It's very funny, and it's one memory more to laugh over with Sonia. During my time there, that's all I had in mind... create special moments, build memories that we shared, because... who knows when will the next time I see her be?
I enjoyed my time in Madurodam so much. Sonia and I shared a Mars Bar, and took pictures together on the buildings's reflecting windows.

Isn't she beautiful? Registered & Protected Registered & Protected
It was really a great, wonderful day. =)

For the story's pictures, click HERE.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010


The misteries of serving a God like Him...

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts" 

Isaiah 55:8-9

Have you ever wondered why on earth something happened to you, or why did you meet such and such a person, or... something you don't understand why it happened?
One of my favourite quotes runs...:
"We're not always meant to understand"

Clark Davis, Love's Abiding Joy

Today I marvel at how God works in my life. He is definitely the most awesome God! I'm so glad He chose me as one of His daughters! ♥

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

And They Said Work Was A Serious Thing...

Grown ups used to say work was a serious thing, where one had to be careful with what she (in my case) did and said.
Well, grown ups weren't expecting for me to work for whom I work now...:

Yeah, I ran a race with my superior! A very respectable, learned man. And as he said... "She got beaten by the old!" We made a comic of it on the white boards later...
(Notice the camera... I'm the photographer! And I actually let him win, though... :P)

This is a comic my superior did (the one who won on our race) of him talking and my Papa translating for him to the rest of the people in the room. As you can see from the drawing, my Papa's a good imitator... =P

And they said work was a serious thing...

Saturday, 13 February 2010

Dutch Stories: The Year's Transition

...continued. For previous posts, click HERE and HERE.

My transition from 2009 to 2010 was amazing. Here's the story.

Late that evening, on the 31st December 2009, I had this yearning to go outside and take the last pictures of 2009. The sunset was beautiful, and I got some very satisfying shots of the canal running past their backyard. It was all so beautiful, the snow was so pure and white, everything so silent and breathtaking... it was the best year farewell in my life. God is good... =) Registered & Protected

D. & L. and J. (the missing members of the family) weren't there to celebrate the Year's Transition with us, and it felt bad not to have everyone together, but nevertheless, we had the time of our lives talking, laughing and playing Worms.
I. had introduces a new game, Worms, which we got a liking to play. It was so much fun and we all laughed so much while playing! After a long supper (the last supper in 2009... sniff) in which we lingered for a long while, talking all together and discussin things, S(oldest) organized a Worms tournament. SO much fun! We had to kill the other's worms, and stay alive ourselves... (I know, pretty useless game, but it was so much fun, and I'm so happy we played that game together!)

For your wormformation, this is a picture of a (very) cute worm, and the scenery of the game itself. I fell in love with the worms, I thought they were so cute and sweet! We could also invent our own teams, and name the worms ourselves. Sonia's family has a wild imagination, so we came up with hilarious teams! For instance, C. named her team NaaraTim (Naara's Team, her baby's name), and all the worms were named after some of Baby Naara's words, such as Ahhhh, or Nguh! or Gueeee, etc.
What made it funnier was that the worms had very funny voices and they continually exclaimed, "OUCH!" or "Haha, MISSED!" or "HURRY UP!", and we laughed a lot. The worms had also various attack methods that were so funny!, such as the "Poke" or the "Baseball bat".
We spent the whole evening like that, and at about twenty past ten p.m. Sonia and I went upstairs to "make ourselves look pretty," as my Papa says. Then we took "our last pictures together in 2009". Most of the pictures turned out OK and we had fun, lots of fun, which was the best. =)
At about twenty to twelve we went back downstairs, and we hung around for a while, talking and getting ready for...

...the last 12 o'clock...

We turned the lights out, we prepared the champagne... and then... it was five to.
We were so excited! You could feel the excitement in the air. I was so happy to be there with Sonia and her family. To be in Holland. Several important happenings in 2009 flashed through my head, and I felt SO blessed, and I was so happy. I can't express myself with words, I just felt complete inside of me. God is good!
And it was one minute to midnight. We started to countdown seconds, and the volume rised when we got to ten seconds to midnight! We almost shouted.
When we finally said "ZERO!" and the clock struck twelve, we all started laughing and wishing each other "HAPPY NEW YEAR!". Then we kissed and hugged each other, and drank our cava. It was a delightful surprise because after we finished our small glasses, they said it was Freixenet cava, the area where I live! That's why it was so nice. ;)
And we prayed. Honestly, and in all sincerity, my heart was so full. I felt perfect.
Right after twelve there was the biggest explosion, and the sky lit up with fireworks. We rushed outside, almost forgetting to put our coats on, and joines all the people outside who'd come to see the beautiful sky. It was SO beautiful! From everywhere, everyone lit fireworks, and it was beautiful, so impressing. There were so many, and all so different; so many colours and shapes. Sonia, S(oldest)and I took lots of pictures, but most of mine didn't come out right. I wasn't prepared for it and didn't have my tripod. Oh well. Registered & Protected

At half past, more or less, Sonia, S(youngest) and I decided to go for a walk in the snow to see more fireworks. Yes, there were still shooting and exploding high up in the sky. I was so impressed! They didn't stop firing them till late, so we had lots of fun watching them. Registered & Protected

There was one that I really liked because it was pretty special. It exploded in a huge circle that almost covered the whole sky (when I say huge circle, I mean huge circle), two colours, but what I liked about it is that it gave such a BANG, that it made everything tremble. I felt my insides vibrate everytime it exploded. So cool.
Then we had a kind of weird/scary/amusing thing happen to us. On our walk around where Sonia lives, we passed by a group of young people who were laughing and listening to music from a quite post, modern car. And drinking. They actually started talking to us, and offered us some beer, they even said we were pretty, but we ignored them and walked on. Sonia said they were quite drunk. Thank God they didn't do anything to us!
It was very funny because both Sonia and I slipped on the ice and fell on the ground on our bums on our nocturne walk. I fell cross-legged and Sonia laughed at me a lot, but I laughed too. The first time I slipped, and the only one, hehe!
That was on our way back, and once at home we got back to our tournament. Yep, we spend the whole night playing at Worms. We laughed so hard with that game our sides ached. S(oldest) invented a team for me, names and all, and we enjoyed the rivalry.
S(youngest) was the first one to leave, at about three a.m. I. was the second, at about five a.m. C. was the third, at about six a.m.
When Sonia and I decided it was about time to go to bed, it was about half past six a.m., but we decided we wouldn't sleep just yet. We wanted to break our record of staying up late together (which was half past six hehe), and so we stayed up talking about things till seven a.m., and when we fell asleep it was already light.
We woke up at 2 p.m. on New Year's day. What a shame!
It was a happy, quiet day, spend with family. Delicious lunch, and more laughs. It was great, really. I am so happy I was able to spend the Year's Transition with the V. family. They are all so great and I love them so much! I am blessed to have friends like them.
Next thing we did after New Year's Day was visit Madurodam... but that's another story. ;)

For the Year's Transition's pictures, click HERE.

Barbara Allen

Twas in the merry month of May
When green buds all were swelling,
Sweet William on his death bed lay
For love of Barbara Allen.

He sent his servant to the town
To the place where she was dwelling,
Saying you must come, to my master dear
If your name be Barbara Allen.

So slowly, slowly she got up
And slowly she drew nigh him,
And the only words to him did say
Young man I think you're dying.

He turned his face unto the wall
And death was in him welling,
Good-bye, good-bye, to my friends all
Be good to Barbara Allen.

When he was dead and laid in grave
She heard the death bells knelling
And every stroke to her did say
Hard hearted Barbara Allen.

Oh mother, oh mother go dig my grave
Make it both long and narrow,
Sweet William died of love for me
And I will die of sorrow.

And father, oh father, go dig my grave
Make it both long and narrow,
Sweet William died on yesterday
And I will die tomorrow.

Barbara Allen was buried in the old churchyard
Sweet William was buried beside her,
Out of sweet William's heart, there grew a rose
Out of Barbara Allen's a briar.

They grew and grew in the old churchyard
Till they could grow no higher
At the end they formed, a true lover's knot
And the rose grew round the briar.


So sad! [sniff] It's a song I really like, even though it's so sad... the melody is so melancholic...

Sunday, 7 February 2010


Yesterday night I couldn't sleep. It was half past twelve a.m. and I kept tossing and turning in my bed.
So I climbed down my top bunkbed and decided to read the Bible for a while, because there was something I'd read in prayer meeting I wanted to check.
We had read 2 Peter, chapter 1. These are the parts that were highlighted:

"For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ."
Verses 5 to 8

Then I continued reading on my own, and read, 

"But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins" 
Verse 9

And I started to think... and realised I have to work on that, because, more than anything, I know I lack in perseverance (although it would make it clearer if I said that it's translated as "patience" in the Spanish version). But that wasn't the point I wanted to make. What really stood out to me were the following verses:

"So I will always remind you of these things, even though you know them and are firmly established in the truth you now have. I think it is right to refresh your memory as long as I live in the tent of this body, because I know that I will soon put it aside, as our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. And I will make every effort to see that after my departure you will always be able to remember these things."
Verses 12 to 15
The last verse stood out to me especially, and later that night, while I couldn't sleep, I opened the Bible again to that verse, and thought for a while.
I wondered if Peter had any idea of the way we would be reminded of his words... If he had any idea of how we would always remember these things, the things he had written, such a long time after his departure from this world.
And I marveled at God's awesomeness because, after such a long time (Peter wrote that about 2000 years ago), after so many persecutions and after all that Christianity has suffered... we still have a Bible in our hands, with true words spoken and written years and years ago.