Not in Kansas anymore

So. We’ve been living in Amsterdam for almost three weeks now, and (dare I say it out loud?) the transition has been pretty seamless. My daughter has a new school, new friends, a completely new life. I keep waiting for the dip to hit, for the bottom to fall out and the homesickness to begin, but so far… Nothing.

IMG_5156Part of what helps is that Holland doesn’t feel foreign to any of us. My husband is Dutch, I lived here for twelve years, both kids were born here. We speak the language and know the culture. We have friends and family down the street, around the corner, and a short bike or train ride away. We feel as at home here as we do in the States.

Yet my daughter has always been more American than Dutch. She prefers English. She watches American shows. The American culture fits her to a T. There are other American students at her new school—an international one boasting fifty-four nationalities and dozens of languages—but in an ironic twist, she’s proud to be considered one of the Dutch kids. She goes to school smiling, and she comes home smiling. It’s been a nice…well, not a surprise, exactly, but I never expected it to be this easy.

Is there pixie dust in the water? Is it the calm before the storm? I don’t know. Maybe things will be different by my next post, we’ll see.

But in the meantime, I’m enjoying the peace.

About Kimberly S. Belle

Kimberly Belle grew up in Eastern Tennessee, in a small town nestled in the foothills of the Appalachians. A graduate of Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia, Kimberly lived for over a decade in the Netherlands and has worked in marketing and fundraising for various nonprofits. She's the author of two novels, THE LAST BREATH and THE ONES WE TRUST (August 2015). She divides her time between Atlanta and Amsterdam. Keep up with Kimberly on Facebook (, Twitter (@KimberlySBelle), or via her website at

Posted on January 23, 2015, in Blog Posts and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. So glad everything is working out. Of course, no one knows what lurks within teenage girls. 🙂 It’s minute to minute in my house some days. I’m sure your daughter will enjoy her semester because it’s an adventure. She’s smart enough to know how lucky she is to have such a wonderfully unique opportunity. Have fun!

  2. Never question peace when dealing with a teenager. Just go with it and enjoy every second. So glad you are getting to experience both countries.

  3. How lovely everything sounds! That’s so cool. ENJOY it!

  4. Thanks, ladies! And so right, Christy. Never question peace when dealing with a teenager. 🙂

  5. This sounds lovely, Kimberly. I’m a little jealous. I’ve always wanted to live abroad and experience a different culture, at least for a little while. Hmm, I wonder how to make that happen…

    I hope your time in Amsterdam continues to be peaceful and fulfilling!

  6. How very exciting! I wish your family well, Kimberly, and I hope the smooth operation continues.

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