One of the joys of being a photographer, especially one who photographs expats, is the ability to help families to document and remember their experience of their adopted country. The kids grow, the tulip season only lasts a couple of months and of course there is always that next assignment or expat move just around the corner.

But to take the time, to acknowledge, document, and celebrate the gift of our experience is invaluable. With this family, on the verge of so many new things, right around the corner – it was a pleasure to photograph these tiny moments. Like the moment a girls best friend could stand it not a second longer and decides to join her in the field. The love and sweetness between a child and her pet is so simple and so devoted. Or the special way a father has of making a “tween” cringe at the idea of one more kiss on a forehead. Or the tangible and kinetic love of a mother and a daughter. I felt and experienced all of these things in my short time photographing this family. I hope you can see what I felt as well.


The tulips and color are so amazing right now in South Holland.  I was able to get out and photograph some family sessions this past weekend.  I picked a spot to close to Lisse, kind of on the way to the Keukenhof and in the heart of the tulip growers belt in The Netherlands.  It is a riot of color out there right now and around every bend is a beautiful field of tulips, daffodils, and sweet smelling hyacinths.  The color is almost overwhelming…

I love learning a bit more about the families I photograph.  To be a successful expat, I think  you need to be open and ready for adventure and this family was!  It was their first winter and the little ones shivered just a bit in our “Holland” spring weather.  But they were brave and having fun.  There is something magic about being in a field planted with flowers whose sole purpose is to bring joy.  Colorful, bright, joy.  


I participated in a local South Holland art and craft show and met this fantastic local artists named Karianne. She creates these lovely bespoke boxes out of gorgeous papers and fabrics. And the best part is that she loves the challenge of creating one of kind items. I have been on the lookout for more products and ways to showcase the stories of my clients and I think that I have found something that is truly one of a kind. The fabric is imported Italian linen and the ribbon is a lovely double-faced satin that is so soft and smooth.

We got together and talked about creating a “prototype” that could be used to showcase some great client images sized in a manageable desktop size. Kariannes boxes are perfect for families that want to capture and celebrate their own life story. In fact, I have a similar box of images and mementos on my own bedside table. One evening this week, while talking, reading and getting the kids ready for bed, my son started to look at the box. He carefully went through each image and item. He examined every photo, some a bit old and tattered, but he had questions and genuine interest in what I had chosen to hold near and dear. Having a special place for images and bits of our story, allowed my son and I to learn a bit more about each other and perhaps ourselves.

I cannot think of a stronger argument for printing and sharing the photos of our life. They help us better understand our journey but also remind us of the gift of the present. I would love to hear from you in the comments as to how you would use this little box. What images would you keep. Who would you want to share your story with?

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Telling the story of a family, especially an expat family that is getting ready for the “next big move”, becomes a story of relationships to people and almost as importantly to place and the things that we hold dear. It is in a child’s room, those mementos that have been organized just so. A family of deer with big eyes – watchful of all that happens in a swirling torrent around them. It is in the precision that a child can hop into their bed from across the room and it is in that delicate balance on the edge of everything. It is the perfection of organization of cards with powers and potions that an adult is so far removed from that we cannot even bear witness to the fantasy that they inspire.

The story is in those things that we surround ourselves with that remind us of what we value. That cookbook – from that restaurant. The one that was so perfectly situated and had the most amazing poached pears. That place where the kids were relaxed and not begging for ice cream, and yes actually ate that sauce surrounding the home made noodles. Yes that book that you can look at and instantly memory wells up and fills your soul with the place and the light of your time there.

And it is in that place that we have called home. The place that calls to mind the dinners with friends and wine around a fire pit. Certainly the neighbors might have gotten a bit tired of this…and the swans that paddle by and hiss demanding their fair share of crusts that are being thrown into the water. Those impossible stairs that were so frightening on day one but now – with mastery – will be one of those things that we carry with us as yet another memento.

So home, and moving, all flow together and we await that next moment where the place feels a part of our story.


If you take a right out of my front door, walk about 200 yards you will be in a wonderful park, with paths, pretty canals, little spring flowers, and tall old growth trees. But then if you look just between these trees and just beyond the canal you will find the most adorable artist studio. It is a little building between the trees and it is owned by this vibrant woman named Linda.

Linda’s space is amazing. She has gorgeous light that filters through the huge north windows and skylights on the roof. Just being in this space made we want to pick up a paintbrush and move right in or plan a cozy little dinner party with friends in the woods.

The shop is called Tussen Kunst & Knots and is a fun mix of books, colorful florals, and commissioned works.  Linda also hosts painting parties and does mini- gallery openings. I can just see how amazing this little spot would look with tiny lights in the early evening while sipping a nice glass of wine…

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  • What a nice surprise to read this little story about Tussen Kunst & Knots. The pictures are lovely!
    Maybe it’s nice to know that every Sunday the atelier is open from 11.00 hr till 16.00 hr, and that the tea is always hot.
    Hopefully a lot of people will find their way to my little atelier between the trees…

    Thanks Kristine!

    Linda Kievid
    facebookpage tussenkunstenknots

  • admin

    Linda – It was a pleasure! Thanks for updating your information so people can get in touch.