We Went to a Dutch Village in Holland!

The Dutch Village in Holland, MI, that is. I’d totally love to go to a real Dutch village, though. Maybe on our next crazy year of nomadic living.

Who Went With Us: My college friend, Becky, her husband, Walter (who happens to be from the real, honest-to-goodness country of Holland), and their adorable kiddos. They live in Michigan.

Who Didn’t Go With Us: My beloved camera, which has been missing for ten days now. (Weep.) The camera bag is the size of a newborn baby, so it’s not like something that could be hiding in the couch cushions or under a chair or something. There’s a possibility it was stolen, which would break my heart (both because it’s gone and because I like to pretend that all people are awesome and wouldn’t do something like that).

So these photos are all from my phone. I drop my phone with embarrassing frequency, so it takes kind of crappy quality pictures. Sucko.

The Dutch Village was fun, though! We got to see how they make wooden shoes. Walter said that some people still wear them when they farm. The ground in Holland is very moist, and the wood keeps their feet warm and dry. Neato.

In the “kinder” area, we learned to play this fun game called Skepergburgenwaajraafensen. I totally just made that up. I don’t remember what it was called. It was a bit like Skee-ball, only with little discs.

BoyWonder totally got into it. He had his own personal party every time he scored.

There were a ton of fun attractions there. A swing ride, which almost made me puke. No photos of that one. An animal petting area, with cute little bunnies and the funniest fuzzy chickens I’ve ever seen. No photos of that, either. A llama even just wandered through the place, but again, no photos. I kind of suck at photo-taking with my phone.

This train ride was awesome. When they said “train ride,” I expected the typical American train ride, where kids sit there and ride around, and you sit there and watch them. But the Dutch make those kids work for it, man.

They had to push and pull the lever the whole way around the track. It was even harder around corners. I’m pretty sure this is why Europeans are thinner than Americans.

Kicking your leg above your head while wearing wooden clogs probably helps, too.

Speaking of weight, I got weighed on this old-fashioned scale to see if I was a witch. Apparently, they had witch trials in Holland similar to the Salem witch trials here. If the weighmaster determined that you weighed less than he thought you should, you could be declared a witch. Totally makes sense, what with the flying on a broomstick thing and whatnot.

 I was declared innocent. I have to admit, I was a little disappointed.

I thought The Muse would for sure be declared a witch. But no, she was innocent, too.

How fun is this game? Like a three-legged race. Sort of. Not really. Same concept, though.

Oh yeah, I also snuck over to The Gap and bought my summer flip-flops for next year. $3, baby!

Walter wasn’t around when I snapped this, so I have no idea what this sign means, but I love it. I’m going to start using it as an expletive when I get frustrated. BURGEMEESTERLAAN!! I’ll have to ask our Dutch friend about this and about the Skerepenbrugenjaaferjensen game and get back to you.
That was really just a fraction of The Dutch Village. It’s a very cool attraction. Always nice to feel like you’re getting your admission’s worth when you go someplace like that. Highly recommended.

We also did some apple picking at a local orchard. Michigan, if you didn’t know, is known for its apples. Not as known as Washington, but in the Midwest, Michigan is where the good apples are.

It was a gorgeous morning in South Haven, but when we got to the orchard 20 miles away, it was cloudy and windy.

But that didn’t stop the kids from riding the fastest ferris wheel I’ve ever seen. That sucker booked. Seriously, it was a little scary. Who knew a ferris wheel could be a thrill ride?

Becky chatted with the goats a bit. She’s normal, I promise. She’ll probably kill me for posting this picture, but it makes me laugh.


We got lost briefly in the corn maze. I actually kind of hate corn mazes. I’m terrified of getting lost in a corn field. The whole time, I try to think “Field of Dreams,” but all I can think is “Children of the Corn.” This one wasn’t too bad, though. We made it out before the horror movie music kicked in.

And Becky found an adorable little turtle, like two inches long, right in the middle of the maze path. It was super cute! No photos of that, either. Man, I suck.

Oh yeah, and we really did pick some apples. The actual picking part took all of five minutes. We had to force the kids to stop, though, or we would have had apples coming out our ears.

On the way back to South Haven, we stopped at this place called The Chocolate Garden. Supposedly, they’re the #1 chocolatier in America, according to something-or-other organization. Blah blah blah. They make handmade fancy-schmancy truffles. They were alright. I wasn’t blown away. I think they were named #1 because it’s kind of snooty, which makes people think the chocolate tastes better.

I did appreciate their sign, though.

And when we walked in the door, this was the first thing I saw and I just had to laugh. These are two of my favorite sayings, and the fact that they were right there in the supposedly best chocolate shop in the country was just too fitting.

We did actually end up with apples coming out our ears. And some peaches coming out our nose. Even splitting them with our friends, we still have been eating apples all week. But, It’s All Good! 🙂 More apple crisp for me. 

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Annie writes about life, motherhood, world issues, beautiful places, and anything else that tickles her brain. On good days, she enjoys juggling life with her husband and homeschooling her children. On bad days, she binges on chocolate chips and dreams of traveling the world alone.

Comments 4

  1. This from your Dutch friend: Burgemeesterlaan: Mayor avenue. Game we played: Sjoelen. About the wooden shoes before my fellow Dutchman start harassing me: very FEW people still wear them.

    1. Mayor avenue? Really? I was hoping for something a little more exciting. I knew that game started with an “S,” but I could have sworn it was longer. And thanks for the clarification on the shoes. I’d love to see someone farming in them, though. 🙂

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