Monday, September 13, 2010

Medical emergency?

My youngest daughter woke up this morning with a bad tummy ache.  She didn't want to do anything just laid on the couch clenching her tummy the whole morning. Now this really gave me a flash back, if I still lived in Canada,   I would have bundled her up thrown her in the car and taken her to the emergency and put up with the ten hours of waiting in the waiting room, like the over-protective mother I am.  This is just how it is in North America.  Only if we have a small complaint that (we feel) can wait will we call our general practitioner and make an appointment. 

In the Netherlands it is much different and probably much more efficient.  You are only granted entry into the emergency with permission from your general practitioner or if you have been brought in by an ambulance.  Otherwise you must call your doctor and he will decide if he needs to see you right away. There is an after hours clinic that also requires you to call them first.  The secretary or doctors assistant will decide if your medical emergency needs immediate attention or can wait until your own general practitioner sees you in the morning. Personally I do like this method, this frees up the emergency room for REAL emergencies. 

So anyways, I called my own family doctor this morning and he was on vacation.  I swear this man goes on vacation at least 3 times a year (or only when ever I need to make an appointment).  I don't think my Canadian family doctor ever went on vacation or even had a sick day for that matter.  So I get the doctor answering machine telling me to call the "doktersdienst" Doctors service who will then direct me to the doctor who is taking my doctors patients.  I called the suggested doctor and they requested we wait to see if the pain gets worse.  I can imagine they are getting double the amount of patients today.  After a visit to the bathroom, my daughter is already feeling much better, is now dancing and singing to the Backyardigans and will probably go back to school before the day is out.. 

This is the new hospital about to be opened in my city.  It's been really neat watching it being built over the last year or so and in a few weeks it will be in full working order.  

Monday, September 6, 2010

Slagharen Theme Park

As the weather gets noticeably cooler and we seem to have more rain clouds than sunny days, I decided to take advantage of what possibly could be the last "warm," sunny weekend of the summer.  I packed up my big knapzak (backpack) with sandwiches, fruit, drinks and sultana crackers and we headed off to Slagharen Theme Park.  This country and western themed park has the right mix for young and old children.

My children being almost 5 and almost 13 were both able to find attraction that suited each other well.  

My oldest daughter is brave and will go on almost any ride.  

My youngest is still at a very unsure age and takes the easy safe looking rides.  

Whether you are in North America or Europe, theme parks seem to be relatively the same.  The same type of rides, the same overly priced fried tasteless foods, the useless knick knack souvenirs, large crowds and long lineups.  There was still a few differences I noticed from the theme parks I have visited in North America and here in the Netherlands namely, Slagharen:
-Height requirements weren't as strictly controlled as I have seen in N.A. theme parks.  I was seeing children that were too big getting on kiddy rides and children that were too small getting on big rides.

-Safety precautions are not as strict as they are in North America.  On many children rides the parents would stand at the inside of the exit gate (inside being where the ride is).  I remember in theme parks in Ontario the yell at you with there policing type voice "stand back behind the yellow line ma'm".  There was a small merry-go round ride at Slagharen where parents were throwing their kids on the ride and taking them off while it was still in motion. Other older children were jumping on and off the ride and running around it while it was in motion.  The operator didn't say anything about it. 

-All theme parks I have visited in North America frowned on bringing food in the park.  You would then have to fill a cooler box with ice and your picnic and leave it in your car, exit the park and re-enter after you eat your lunch.  The parks in the Netherlands seem to know that they will not be able to pry a cold botterham (sandwich) out of a Dutch persons hands so they don't even bother trying, instead they set up picnic areas all through out the park.  Whats even better? If you forgot something, they have a supermarket in Slagharen!  Ok I must add they also have cabins and tepee's so you can stay over night but the super market is in the theme park and not where the cabins are. Nifty!  Mind you the prices are probably doubled!

-I have mentioned before the Dutch love their dogs and they bring them every where... shopping... into restaurants etc.  You can also bring them into the theme park.  Mind you I can imagine there would be an even stricter poop and scoop rule in a park then there is in most cities (at least I would hope so).

- And only found in the Netherlands... Bong shaped slushy and drink cups... I kid you not! Kinda eerie watching a kid sip from one of these!

All in all we really enjoyed our sunny day out at Slagharen and would recommend this theme park to any one else. 

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Holland DOES have talent!

I admit, I watched the first few seasons of Dutch Idols but after awhile it got to be the same ol same ol boring stuff.  To me it was as if they found all the talent they were going to find in this small country.  Shortly after Dutch Idol seemed to also fizz out for the Dutch audience (maybe it hasn't and I am still speaking on personal opinion), Hollands Got Talent seemed to be the next reality talent show to make your big debut on.  I started watching the first season not finding myself impressed and quickly zapping the channel.  This year I entertained my oldest daughter, Breanna,  and decided to sit along side her while she watched Hollands got Talent. Was I ever in for a big surprise... it was as if they found a whole new group of REALLY talented people, especially children.

These amazing little guys are only 9,11 and 14 and making moves that hurt my bones just looking at them.

This is another great duo.  I love how they work in synchronized with one another.

This is the cutest little girl.  She went up and auditioned on her own.  At the end of her perfect audition, the judges asked where her mother is and asked if she would come on stage.  They then found out it was her mother who taught her how to dance so well.  They all decided that the young girl can come back IF she was accompanied by her mother (because that would make such a nice show... and it does).

Not too bad for a 9 year old. Ok it wasn't perfect but HE IS NINE!! Can you just imagine how he will sound at 16? Hopefully he will bump Bieber off the charts! {I kid Breanna I kid.... or not ;-)~ }