Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween!

Hello me Cookie Report lovers! It is Halloween! Me is already and dressed up to go trick or treating - although that is not very common here in the Netherlands. Nevertheless, Berry promised me some Halloween cookies, so me is all fine by that. Me is all curious if you will be celebrating Halloween! Please drop me a note and a picture of your costume. O and do not eat all candies at once okay.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

X is for…

…xylofoon (xylophone). A word that you almost write the same in Dutch and English. A xylophone is a musical instrument that you can play on with sticks. Another Dutch word with an X is X-ray (it is the same in English). And that is all me know to tell about the letter X. There are not many words in the Dutch dictionary that start with an X that really are interesting for little blue monsters. So me sorry, but this is all there is to this week’s alphabet. (Xylofoon)

And although next week will be a short one too when me talk about letter Y, me promise letter Z will be awesome. Just wait, over two weeks… Bye bye for now!

Friday, October 24, 2014

W is for...

…Walrus (well, it is the same in English as in Dutch…)! Me love the walrus. It is a very gorgeous and relaxed animal. And they have googly eyes like me. At the Dolfinarium in Harderwijk me can visit the Walrus family under water. Me love Raisa. She is very curious, cute and playful. Me have written about this encounter before. A walrus lives in the water. Another w-word that is the same in English and Dutch. They live in the Arctic sea though, so me is glad me can visit them at the zoo.

The Netherlands is known for its water. There are canals, creeks, brooks and even rivers and big lakes. Also it is hugged by two oceans: the North Sea and the Waddenzee (Wadden sea). There you can find a natural habitat called de Wadden (the Wadden) and it contains a lot of different animals, island and pieces of ocean floor that sometimes will get dry because of the tides. When it is ebb you can walk on the ocean floor. In the Wadden sea you find the Waddeneilanden (Wadden islands) like Texel. You can travel to the island by boat and ferry. At the islands and on the mainland you can find lots of weilanden (meadows) with cows, horses and sheep.

Waddenzee from the ferry to Texel / Weiland with sheep on Texel

The nice thing about sheep is that they give wol (wool) for knitting nice sweaters and scarfs and such. Texel’s wool is very famous and has a high quality. Meadows and other nature scenery make a good backdrop for wielrennen (cycling). Me love to watch that. In 2010 we had the start of the Giro d’Italia a few years ago. Next year Le Tour de France will start in Utrecht! O boy O boy!

Wol / Wielrennen (selfie at the Giro)

To conclude the letter W me will tell you something about food starting with a W. Like witlof (chicory) that you can eat with ham and cheese out of the oven. Worst (sausage) start with W too. At birthday parties slices of worst are often served as a treat (together with cubes of cheese). But worst is also eaten with different kinds of stamppot (stew). But it is a different kind of sausage then. And sometimes it is wrapped and baked inside a bun. Then it is called worstenbroodje (pig in a blanket). It is good sometimes, but me rather eat a W-shaped cookie!

Slices of worst / Worstenbroodjes
Above: Witlof

Well this concludes the letter W. Next week me will post an article about the letter X on a different day then Friday. Because Friday it is Halloween! No worries. Me will still talk about the letter X. See you next week!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Lion Sanctuary

You know me love lions right. They are so mysterious and majestic. Poised even. On me Facebook me already posted some pictures of the Lion Sanctuary at Landgoed Hoenderdaell. Here lions, tigers, mountain lions, panthers and other big cats live in a huge sanctuary. Yes they all have their own room – well per family that is. These big cats have been rescued from smugglers and bad zoos or habitats. At the sanctuary they learn to be wild again so they can be released in the wild again. Well, semi-wild, because there are reservations and national parks where the people will look after them. Me was in awe! And me even made a new friend. Do you think he noticed me?

Friday, October 17, 2014

V is for...

…Voetbal (European football or soccer)! It is a national sport here in the Netherlands. People are supporting their home teams or regional teams. Sometimes not. Then they are fans of another team or a bigger team. It can be crazy sometimes. Me love to hang out at FC Utrecht but mostly because Berry takes me with her. You can read more about it in me blog about the letter U! (Above: Voetbal)

V is also for vakantie (vacation or holiday). Me went on vakantie in August to France. Me have written some blogs about it. Just read them it was fun. Every country in the world by the way has a vlag (flag). The Dutch flag is red, white and blue. Me love the American Stars & Stripes too. But for me blog me show the flag of the Cook Islands. Too bad there aren’t any cookies on them…

Vakantie in France / vlag of the Cook Islands

There are also animals that start with the letter V in the Dutch language. Like vis (fish), vogel (bird) and ofcourse vlinder (butterfly). Me love to go to zoos to visit the butterfly gardens, fish tanks and the walk through bird habitats, because then you can see a lot of gorgeous animals up close.

Vogel at DierenPark Amersfoort / vlinder at a butterfly garden in Spain

You are probably wondering if there is any Dutch food starting with the letter V. And if you are not, me is going to tell you anyway. The answer is: Yes there is! Vla (also known as custard or flan) starts with V. It is very yummy. It is a dairy product, it kinda looks like yoghurt, but it is creamier and often sweeter. Vla is available in many colours and flavours. Even with chocolate chips! Did you know you can make a vlaflip (flan twist, it is the only translation me could think of) with vla? It is a desert made out of vla, yoghurt and some lemonade syrup (straight out the can, without the water). Sometimes it is decorated with some cookie crumbs or fruit. It is yummy.

Vla / Vlaflip

Last but not least there are some Dutch words with a V me love to share with you. First up is Vrijdag (Friday) the day me post me alphabet blogs. Just like everywhere else in the world the Dutch also thank God it is Friday. Another word me love is vriendschap (friendship). Me have many friends here and on Sesame Street! And me conclude letter V with verjaardag (Birthday). Hey! Me love birthdays. They always come with cake.

Vriendschap / Verjaardag (pictures by Sesame Street Workshop)

Well that concludes the letter V. Only four alphabet episodes left. With next week a letter me can say a lot about: W!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Fun in France

Hey there! Me is going to conclude me blogs about me vacation in France now with a little story of all the fun things me did on vacation. To start off: the waterfight. We had two. One with waterblasters. The other with waterballoons. It was really fun. Also fun was the view. Well it was mostly beautiful. Me loved watching at the lakes. See the kids play in the rubber boat. But also playing European soccer or ring toss. Me had a lot of fun in France! Obviously me loved the delicious cookies and such. But nothing beats working up an appetite first. Me really loved the balloon fight. Sneaking around the house trying to stay dry. Let me tell you: me was soaked too. But the nice warm sun dried me fuzzy and blue fur quickly!

Me loved our vacation in France! Me hope you enjoyed it too. Do you want to read more about me vacation or did you miss one of the previous blogs? No worries! Me have collected them here. Just click on the pictures below!

Friday, October 10, 2014

U is for...

…Utrecht! It is the city me is living in with Berry in the Netherlands. It is a large city in the heart of the country. It is also an old city, with beautiful old buildings, and there is water running through the old city through canals. It is truly beautiful. The most famous building in this University City is The Dom tower. It used to be attached to the Dom Church – a gorgeous Gothic church – but due to a big storm ages ago the tower and church got separated. Utrecht also has its own football (you know soccer) team: FC Utrecht. Me go to the games too with Berry and her dad. Berry even made me me own jersey! Cool huh.

The city / me at FC Utrecht
Above: The Dom

U is also an edible letter. In Dutch uien (onions) start with the letter u. Me do like to eat them, but not to chop them. Me always cry when me chop onions. Me do like uienbrood (onion bread). Mostly in combination with melted cheese. Om nom nom. The only candies me could find that star with the letter u is the ulevel. It is some kind of lozenge made out of sugar and syrups for taste. It is a very old fashioned Dutch candy.

Uien / uienbrood
Above: ulevel

The last – to me – important words starting with an u are uitje (outing) and uil (owl). Me love to go to the zoo to go owl watching (amongst other animals). This owl lives at DierenPark Amersfoort, a zoo me like to visit a lot. Amersfoort lies in the province of Utrecht, where the city of Utrecht is the capitol of. Nice huh (you see what me did there right).

Well next week me will talk about the letter V. Me is really looking forward to it.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Toulouse & Montauban

Hi everybody! Here me, Cookie Monster, again. Me is almost ready to conclude me series about me vacation in France. Next week will be the last. Today me will talk about two other cities me have visited during the vacation. First stop: Toulouse.

Pretty Toulouse
Toulouse is a large, historic city. It has beautiful churches and most of all a huge palace at a square in the middle of the city. There is no king living there, but it is still used. Me do not know what for though. Me have been mostly shopping at Toulouse. O and lunching. O boy that was one yummy and healthy lunch, with a tuna melt with mozzarella and grilled veggies. After lunch me visited the cookie store me told you about a few weeks back. Toulouse was a pretty city. Me looooooved that cookie store though! The specialty of Toulouse are sugared violet flowers. Om nom nom.

The city of Montauban was a whole different cookie. The city is built on top of a fort. So when you walk in the city, you do not have the feeling you really are visiting a fort. There have been many fighting at Montauban. One of the famous fights has to do with cannons. There still is a cannonball impact wound in the walls of the fortress. Also the specialty of Montauban is named after the cannons: Cannonsballs of Montauban. It is chocolate covered hazelnuts. Me loved them. At Montauban we went shopping, ran around a huge fountain, saw some gorgeous buildings and got a special coffee with chocolate chip cookies! Well, Berry drank the coffee, she shared some cookies with me!

Next week me will tell more about the cabin me stayed at. And the games we have been playing on hot days.
Bye bye for now.