LOIS, BELLE & FRIDA
Schiedam, The Netherlands
My name is Lois Kruidenier, I am 31 years old and I live in Schiedam with my husband Hilbert and our daughters Belle (4) and Frida (2). I was born and raised in Rotterdam and have been a director of theatre for quite some time. Since a couple of years I totally embraced my dream of becoming a writer and self-published three books since then.
What surprised you most about motherhood?
The never ending pile of laundry. Nobody told me about that.
What’s your advice for new moms?
Don’t do the whole maternity visit if you don’t feel like it. You need to get to know a whole new little person, a whole new life. It feels weird to me that we expect new mothers (and fathers) to invite people into their home at this most intimate time. At a time where most of us moms don’t even wear clothes or do our hair because we have to feed our newborn non-stop and barely sleep, family members expect us to also make them a cup of coffee? Don’t do it, these people can wait. And if they really want to come over, let them bring food.
Don’t do the whole maternity visit if you don’t feel like it.
You need to get to know a whole new little person, a whole new life.
What’s your favorite moment of the day? Do you have daily/weekly rituals with Belle and Frida?
I like the evening. After dinner, right before the girls go to bed, there always is this kind of coziness in our house. Belle puts on her favorite music and we dance around the house. Or we cuddle up on the couch and she makes me read a chapter from the Wizard of Oz. And it’s even more fun at these cold and darker months, because now we watch the ‘Sinterklaas journaal’ with the whole family.
I like the evening. After dinner, right before the girls go to bed,
there always is this kind of coziness in our house.
Just be there, that’s the biggest goal.
You have a lot of nice tattoos! We love to know more about them 😉 Are there any related to motherhood or your ideas on life? What’s the story behind them?
Thank you! I got my first tattoo on Bali when I was 17. It’s a wolf on my foot, an exact copy of my fathers only tattoo. We love wolves. They are very loyal and masters in communication.
My second tattoo was a big back piece. It’s a geisha portrayed from the back, surrounded by cherry blossoms. My sister made this drawing so this is a dedication to her. I also got the skyline of Rotterdam on my arm, the names of my daughters on my wrist. And the word mama on my knuckles. That one is a dedication to my own motherhood and my mother as well. My newest tats are little Bowie, the main character from the children’s book I wrote. An hourglass, designed by my husband which represents our love and how we make our marriage work. A book with growing flowers, representing my dream of becoming a writer coming to live. And a little heart with bursting flames because well, that’s just me haha.
LOIS & BELLE ARE WEARING
We did not see a lot of plastic toys around your home and loved the ’Season table’ What’s important to you when it comes to toys and playing?
I try to invest in toys that are sustainable. Plastic is obviously a very bad choice for the environment and plastic toys also tend to break a lot sooner than wooden toys. Additional benefit is the fact that those sustainable wooden toys really blend in a lot better in our interior. And of course we also get some Duplo or Barbies for our girls from time to time, but I just stuff those in a wicker basket haha.
You share beautiful books that you read for your girls. What are your personal 5 favorites and why?
Yessss, I’ve got a massive book addiction haha. Our favorites at this moment our:
- Ogen die schitteren in de hoekjes. – Joanna Ho
- Julian gaat naar een bruiloft – Jessica Love
- De Notenkraker (muziekboek) – Uitgeverij Christofoor
- De Tovenaar van Oz – L. Frank Baum met illustraties van Marieke Nelissen
- And off course, my own children’s book ‘Laat mij maar even’ Click here to shop!
You have written a few beautiful books yourself. What are your plans for the future writing & career wise?
I just want to keep writing forever. There is a new book in the making. I have been working on this book for almost a decade now and it’s gonna be some sort of autofiction. But in my mind it’s never gonna be finished so I have no idea when it will come out. And ofcourse there is a new Bowie book coming.
Your book ‘Laat mij maar even’ is a big succes. What was the inspiration to write this book and what do you hope kids and parents take from this book?
Belle was my biggest inspiration voor ‘Laat mij maar even’. I wanted to write a children’s book for quite some time and there was this one evening when the story just came to me. Frida was just a newborn and I had to rock her to sleep for long periods of time. This one night, I was so tired that I could barely keep my eyes open while rocking her, so I started writing a story in my head. It was a story about all kinds of real moments I recently experienced with Belle. We are both highly emotional people and the arrival of her babysister hadn’t just been easy on her. So I wanted to write something about her, about us and about the fact that her being sad or angry would never be a reason for me to stop loving her. She was the one who said ‘laat mij maar even’ to me for the very first time and it brought tears in my eyes because I was just so proud of her setting her boundaries.
I hope kids and their parents learn to accept their emotions through Bowie, but more than that I just hope they have a nice moment together while reading this book. Because quality time between parents and children is everything in these rushed and busy times.
‘I wanted to write a children’s book for quite some time
and there was this one evening when the story just came to me.’
Do you have a success recipe at your home? Healthy, easy and a hit with the girls? I would love to know 😉
Yes, this is actually the recipe that made Hilbert marry me. He told me in his vows haha. It’s nasi goreng and it’s been in my family forever. I don’t use a recipe for it but I’ll try to write it down. I take a wok or a frying pan and I lightly fry four thinly diced shallots in butter. Then I add vegetarian chicken and a teaspoon of trassi. I add leek and spring onion, cut into rings. I let this stir for some time. Then I add the cooked white rice and I stir it all. It’s the best with some fried egg on top.
We have been following your Instagram for some time and I love how you shine light on important subjects, vulnerable topics and taboos whereas most people don’t. Why is this important to you ?
I don’t really know why. It just is. I have always had a high sense of justice. Even when I was a little girl and my friend stamped on a little spider, I was mad at her for a week. Couldn’t understand she would kill a living thing like that. Now I have a wide reach through my Insta-following and it is really important for me to use my voice wherever and whenever I can. I think I wouldn’t be able to look at myself in the mirror if I would just only share my outfits or stuff like that.
it is really important for me to use my voice wherever and whenever I can.
If you could name five things you can’t live without, what would they be?
Hilbert, Belle, Frida, my memories and my bicycle.
Are there any words you live by/ quotes/ poems?
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” – Theodore Roosevelt
What’s the nicest piece of art you ever got from Belle and Frida?
Belle is making the most beautiful drawings for Ozosnel (the horse of Sinterklaas) lately. And Frida always brings me little turds made of Play-Doh.
Frida always brings me little turds made of Play-Doh.
If you could go anywhere in the world with your family where would you go and why?
I would like to go to New York with Hilbert and the girls, because we went there on our honeymoon and Belle was already with us, without us knowing. And I would love to go with them to Bali, because my roots lie in Indonesia and Hilbert and I both have beautiful memories there, but we never went together.
Do you have any wishes/goals/plans for the future for yourself, for your girls and for your family?
I hope we find our dream house in the future. Doesn’t have to be much bigger than our current apartment, but I just really wish we could have our own garden, maybe here in Schiedam or maybe more towards the countryside. I want to keep on writing, bring out more beautiful books. And just furthermore enjoy watching my girls grow into the beautiful people they are meant to be. Just be there, that’s the biggest goal.
Which one is your favorite Lennebelle item and why?
Definitely the heart shaped medallion. Such a romantic piece to keep with you forever.
Watching my girls grow into the beautiful people they are meant to be.
Go to the website of Lois to find out more about her work, her (custom made) poems and books.