Soft winter at the Harbour

Soft winter at the Harbour

You have those harsh winter days, and those days where it’s really not necessary to wear a heavy coat but a vest will do just fine! We love our beautiful, luxurious heavy winter coats, but with a few knitted layers on it feels so much lighter and still warm without the restricted movability that a winter coat brings… So comfortable!

Michiel is a cap, hat or beanie wearing kind of guy so you will almost always find him with something on his head.  Now we’re all grown up I just love these stylish duotone caps with mixed materials. which give the cap a bit more classic feel, instead of sporty look.

Allways nice to mix things up a bit especially in the winter when temperatures can fluctuate so much in Holland!
We are wondering, where do you guys live!?

Photography: Jolanda Marti

 

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10 ways to fight off the “Blue monday” blues!

The days are short, no Christmas or new years eve to look forward to, it all went by so fast and all your left with are some extra pounds!  The weather isn’t really making your day, most of the new year’s resolutions are already out the window… which makes you feel shit about yourself. So much to do and it feels like the summer is so, so far away! And you just feel so extremely tired and unmotivated and just maybe a little down.

Well, maybe you have a mild case of a little winter depression. Don’t worry, it won’t last that long.
The most depressing day this year is tomorrow! (January 15)
But here’s the upside: If thats the low-point, it’s all up from there! This year is only getting better from tomorrow on!
So YAY to that!

But first surviving the low-point, Blue Monday coming up!
Michiel and me went out to get some quality time together with coffee and conversations at Coffee & Cacao in Monnickendam!

Get ready to fight the blues with us! These are my 10 tips to cheer up your spirit upcoming weeks!

About the BLUE MONDAY
Blue Monday is a name given to a day in January (typically the third Monday of the month) claimed to be the most depressing day of the year. This date was picked taking many factors into consideration, including weather conditions, shorter daytime, debt level (the difference between debt accumulated and our ability to pay), time since Christmas, time since failing our new year’s resolutions, low motivational levels and feeling of a need to take action.

Blue Monday this year (2018)
is on January 15.

Photography: Michiel Fook & Jolanda Marti
Location: Coffee & Cacao   Monnickendam, the Netherlands

1- Meet friends

Chill out with your friends, talk to them, have a drink, compare stories, talk about the fun stuff like:  vacation plans, remodeling the house plans, getting a puppy and all other exciting things/hopes/dreams/plans coming up. And talk about the less fun stuff like things that are going bad, negative feelings, and problems. A friend can help you put things in perspective and can help you think of a way to make it better. But at the least, you can get things off your chest and gives you a moment to vent! And that in itself tends to help a lot to make you feel better!

Have a drink, eat, talk, laugh, cry and toast to an amazing year to come!

2- Spa Sauna day

That tension will just fall right off your back in a few hours of pampering and warm temperatures!
You deserve this! After all those months of hard work, you are allowed to treat yourself!

This is the best time to reload, just when you need it the most!
So if you could afford to go to a spa at least once a year, this would be the perfect time to plan it in.
This way your visit to the spa will have maximum effect. I’m sure it will make you feel so relaxed, inspired and positive so that you’ll be able to get back in the ring and hit the ground running on whatever challenges are lying ahead upcoming months!

3-(‎Bring the kids to grandma and) Go on a date!

For all the childless people: Get off the couch and go do something FUN!!! That’s your excuse!? Go NOW! Have fun! Or if you’re tired of that stuff: Pick up your little neeses and nephews (you will make their parent’s day) and skip to point 3 of this list!

For all the parents: Yayyyy we are going to grandma and grandpa Kids!!! Sleepover! So Exiting! The kids will be over the moon!
And we are too! What would we do without our social safety net, our parents, our friends, our family! So grateful to have them in our lives! And don’t be afraid to ask for a bit of help when you really need it! We parents often go on and on way too long before breaking down… Look after yourselves and your relationship, take the time to talk to each other. Especially with 2+ kids, you will need a break from being a parent sometimes to be a partner instead, give each other your undivided attention.

We love our kids to pieces, but there are things we miss doing together. Before there where kids, it was just us two. And you had the time to do things without entertaining a kid or you could plan a day out with all fun grownup things!
Remember the last time you could just sit at a table for two and enjoy a cup of coffee and a conversation, followed by a visit to a museum? Or go out to dinner and watch a movie after? Or… whatever you would like to without having to worry of whatever your mini is doing… But just for a little moment just be the two of you again.

And guess what!? After a few hours, you’ll see! You will miss them! And when you go and pick them up, you will have the energy to be more fun and patient parent for weeks to come!

 

4-‎ Bake cookies a cake or something else!

Yes! Nothing gives the house that cozy warm happy feel to it than the smell of fresh baked cookies or big delicious apple pie!
This is also amazing to do with your kids. Its fun to do when you’re making it… it smells amazing when your backing it and it makes everyone happy when you’re eating it! Yay! (writing this makes me hungry)

5-Movie Night!

Do a Netflix movie night at home with blankets, homemade popcorn and hot coco!
If you’re going to be a couch potato… be a proper couch potato like a pro! Make things as decadent and comfortable as possible!
Turn that couch into Movie watching heaven! Wait until the kids are asleep and Watch at least 2 movies with your favorite (healthy) snacks!

6-Go outside!!!

Put on your warmest coat and go outside! Take a walk in the park or go on a hike through nature! I know its tempting to stay indoors under a cozy blanket, but going outside will give your body and mind the chance to reload, get some movement, breath some fresh air and get some of that vitamin D in your system!

A walk outside may just give you that little extra energy and positivity to get other stuff going that will get you back on a positive track again!

7- Go swimming!

Yes, you heard me! even doh its cold outside! Especially with the kids! Go and make some swimming bags, put on your swimsuit and go to an indoor tropical swim-paradise! Just use that imagination and act like you’re on a tropical island adventure! Play, jump, have fun! And be in the moment! when you’re back home everyone will get all fuzzy and tired and everyone will sleep like a rose that night! On behalf of your kids, can i just say… Best-Day-Ever!  And happy kids = happy parents!

8- Get creative!

We love to watch our favorite tv series or watch a movie, but a few times a week we leave the tv off, put on some nice music, pour ourselves a drink and just get creative! We do or create whatever we feel like. Like a nice and relaxed art-jam. Most of the times its just the two of us, but over the years we have organized a few art-jam-nights with friends so we can be creative and inspire each other. Being creative is such a wide concept, it could be a drawing, painting, writing, brainstorming on some ideas in a notebook, making new clothes, doing something with your interior, it can be a small project or a big one, and if I could, I would love to make music. (something that’s definitely on my bucket list) but I don’t have those skills yet, so we just keep it at just listening to music for now!

Being creative is great for stress relief. Everyone is talented in some way or another! The problem is that people tend to stress on the fact that whatever they are creating should be “good enough” and that is such a big roadblock. Art cant be wrong, as long as you enjoy making it! Don’t be so hard on yourself and try to have fun!

9- Take care of your health!

Yes I know you’re tired and feeling like eating junk food on the coutch, and that is’n the end of the world. But try and balance that out with lots of delicious fresh fruits and veggies! Combine that with a nice workout or a yoga session and you will definitely feel better and energized with and get all those nice endorphins flowing! That way it’s okay to relax and chill out and eat cookies on some other nights and you get the best of both worlds. Having those two in balance will make all the difference. No extreme health and workout regimes or extreme couch potato-laziness (and all the guilt and tiredness that come with that).

Finding the right balance is hard in the dark winter days after all the holidays already far behind us and still a lot of winter days to go.
But a little bit of movement and extra vitamins will give you the kickstart you need to get up and smile again.

10- Bring some green into the house.

Most of the trees outside have lost their leaves months ago and it will still take a few months for the new fresh leaves to grow back.
Plants are air purifiers. They help remove dangerous compounds from fuels, furnishings, and clothing. They help you feel healthy, happy and fights depression! It also makes you focus better, brings out your creativity and calms you!

So go and get yourself some plant-babies!
Tip: look for palms if you’re looking for some low-maintenance greens in your home!

 

So tell us!? Have you got a bad case of the Blue Monday Blues?
Do you have additional tips? Leave us your experiences in the comments!

x Jolanda

Mindful parenting

Mindful parenting
How to be in the moment as a parent when your mind still is racing, thinking about everything that has been keeping you busy. Being a Mindful parent isn’t easy! So Learn from your kids! They are experts in experiencing and enjoying the present… They know best! Stop overthinking everything and start living in the “NOW”

Last September we went on an unexpected adventure somewhere in the dunes near Zandvoort in Holland. The kids were laughing and running and playing from the moment we stepped out of the van… But for me, it really took me a while to let go of my constant train of thought, let go of my worries, plans, and huge todo list. Until I realized what I was doing to myself and them. I wasn’t really there with them. I was missing out on all the fun while I was too buzzy being an adult!

So in that moment, I thought:  That’s it! I’m done adulting!
And guess what!? I had the best day ever!

Having trouble living in the moment as a parent!? Jump in there with your kids and just allow yourself to fully embrace the fun!
Wo’s with me!?

Watch our new Story Video and don’t forget to subscribe to our channel on Youtube!

MOMyself

It feels like there was the “me” before I had kids and the “me” after. Not only that but after each and every birth of one of my baby girls I totally felt had to find myself all over again.

Having a baby, giving life to a beautiful tiny helpless human and bringing it into this world, and then caring for it 24/7 giving it everything you’ve got is so intense. What that does to your body, you’re mind, to your whole being. It’s all most indescribable. It puts everything upside down and inside out. For a while there the “me” became a “we”. The sense of “self” was scrambled. And all doh after giving birth I turned in to a “me” again… but it doesn’t feel like that at all. That connection to my baby is still there and feels as strong as ever, especially the first 6 months. I am the MOM to someone very special now! And being a mommy is making it impossible for me to remember who I ever was before this little being of mine sprung into life inside my belly. Which by the way, obviously must have rewired this brain of mine in some way. I don’t recognize myself anymore.

And then slowly but surely the dust settles after 7 months or so and I’m starting to get to know myself again. Finally, I can see the new shape of “Myself” again through the new all costuming role of MOM.

And I’m still there! It’s still ME! With the same passions, likes and dislikes, fears, talents, hopes and dreams and everything! But just with a few little extras.

Extra love, extra cuddles, extra responsibility, extra milk, extra patience, priorities and a whole new set of extra hopes and dreams. You’re a MOM but still your Self! And right now I feel like MOMyself!

Recognizing who I am aside from the mom role gives me the strength and clarity to see past the things I want as a mom and gives me the space to feel like an individual And decide what I want to do besides being a mother. Because being a MOM doesn’t mean I can’t have a successful business, be independent, have hobbies, be creative, travel, do sports, feel sexy, powerful, smart, feel like I can do anything I want. Setting an example for my girls! Because I CAN do all that and still be there for my babies almost full time… Even on a working day (3 to 4 days a week) I am with them 18 hours a day! The power of co-sleeping, having a family business, mom/dad equally shared tasks, and working from the home! I want to have it all!

Yes, I am proud to be a mother of 3!
But I am much more than that.

Here is a photo series I did with photographer Wouter Keuris.
So happy I did this shoot with him! We talked a lot about Photography, the wedding-buzz and we had a great time during the shoot! It made me feel like an autonomous person without a baby or kid attached to me for a few hours. I felt like a whole person again, empowered! Not the same as before… but that’s ok. I’ve grown, I’ve learned, I’m getting to know my new MOMyself for the third time. I’m embracing the new me! Never felt so at peace with myself.

Are you a mom? How did you experience that?  Did having of having baby’s changed you in some way?

Photography: Wouter Keuris
Retouche: Jolanda Marti

2017 Recap!

2017 was amazing! Looking back at the past 12 months and so much has happened! We are so thankful for everything and everyone we have in our lives! We are grateful for all the experiences we had and even the difficulties we encountered because we learned from them!

Feels like we are on the right track, let’s continue 2018 and make it a good year filled with positivity and inspiration!

I will be checking in more often from now on! And we are switching from Dutch to Englisch from now on! Subscribe on our youtube channel to be updated on all new videos!
Have a Happy 2018 everyone!!!

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