Our daughter Eryn has a friend called ‘Joep’. He can run really fast and they both love to play throw and catch with a ball. Eryn is very fond of Joep. He’s a two-year-old and really sweet. However, she’s only been able to spend a few days with him. When it’s up to us she will meet Joep again. We are also very keen of him.
And we are very keen of his owner too. Greetje is a woman, who besides being a great host of apartment ‘Bie oans oefje’ and a private hairdresser also is a lovely person. She is great with children. I had a good time, listening to her stories and I found it easy to talk to her. We would definitely love to go back to her, her partner Hans and of course their dog Joep.
It almost was my 45th Birthday. I didn’t want to celebrate, but I did want to get away from our house for a couple of days. All I needed was the presence of my husband and daughter and a change of scenery. It had to be somewhere quiet, but with possible daytrips nearby in case we felt like it. Bie oans oefje turned out to be the perfect place to stay.
For a second I was afraid we had made a mistake leaving our home. It was mosquito time, also in Flevoland where we live. After we arrived, Eryn stepped out of the car and met Greetje and Joep. She then noticed all the little mosquitos flying around. I know what Eryn can be like when it comes to her fear of bugs. But Greetje grabbed her by the hand and asked her to close her eyes. She explained to her that the mosquitos were just dancing and would not sting her. Eryn actually listened and walked with Greetje to our apartment without any problems. Once inside she was safe. The mosquitos could not enter. After a few times walking in and out of the apartment Eryn was no longer afraid of them. Greetje had taken away her fear.
Bie oans oefje.
The chalet ‘Bie oans oefje’ is situated in Lewedorp, a small township in the Dutch Province of Zeeland. It is a separate two bedroom apartment on the property of the farm of Greetje and Hans. Yet when you’re inside you don’t notice that it’s on their property and you can enjoy a beautiful view over the farmlands. The farm itself is well taken care of with beautiful plants, flowers and trees.
Inside the first thing that caught our eye was a pellet stove. Along with it came two metal coal scuttles filled with pellets. For those of you who don’t know how a pellet stove works: at the top you fill up the stove with little sticks that are made of saw-dust, pressed together with wooden leftovers. This material is 100% natural, CO2 neutral and it does not produce much soot. It was easily operated by a remote control and all we had to do was figure out what temperature we wanted in the room and fill up the stove a few times during our stay.
The living room had a couch, a small table and several comfortable chairs. The kitchen area had everything we needed, including a table with chairs. Even a children’s chair was available. Eryn was a very spoiled girl, because there were lots of toys around to play with. She could even make a neckless out of the beads, which she found in her room. In her room there was a bunkbed and in ours and large double bed. The rooms were next to each other so in the morning we woke up with little food steps entering the living room, our door opening with a bang and then a little girl jumping in our bed.
Near the entrance of Bie oans oefje you can find many animals like pigs, sheep, chicken and even a donkey. A bunch of peacocks and sometimes some chicken walk around freely as well as some cats and of course Joep. Joep often put his ball near the entrance of our apartment and waited for us to come outside and play with him. Because of him and the many other animals our daughter immediately had a good time at this place.
One evening Greetje pointed at the big tree in the garden. In it we saw three peacocks sitting down on a branch and getting ready for the night. It was a beautiful view. Greetje told me a story about the peacocks and after that we somehow felt closer to them. They are mysterious animals the way they parade around the farm and do their own thing.
A walk on the dike.
Greetje has grandchildren of her own. I don’t think we’ve ever been to a place that had so many toys for Eryn. Outside she has several little trucks she could ride on. Our best memories were of the walks on the dike. During our stay Greetje took Joep, Eryn and me several times to a dike that runs along the farm. Eryn was on her pedal tractor and most of the times she could ride herself. Only the path that brought us onto the dike was too steep. So Greetje would get Joep’s leash, attach it to the tractor and pull until both the tractor and Eryn were on the dike.
Once we were walking along the dike, Greetje and I had the chance to chat while Eryn and Joep could run/ride. Every now and then we stopped to throw Joep’s ball. Most of the time he would bring it back to us, but a few times he refused. Although he probably knew exactly where he could find it, he felt it was our turn to get it. Only once the ball landed in a field we could not enter. We had to walk all the way back and open a gate for Joep and ourselves. We started walking towards the ball, but Joep retrieved the ball in no time without our help even though it was miles away. He’s got an excellent nose.
When you’re staying at Bie oans oefje there are many places you can go to on a day trip. In a previous story I told you about the Delta Works and our visit to Neeltje Jans. This was only 45 minutes away from the chalet. There are several cities in Zeeland that are closer. Middelburg, Veere, Domburg and Vlissingen are all closer and they are all nice to visit. We especially had a great time in Veere. I will tell you more about it in an upcoming story on this blog.
For people with children I can strongly recommend Hof Poppendamme. It is a restaurant and playground in one. They call it a ‘nature, play and experience farm’. Children can play freely inside or if the weather permits outside while parents have time to relax and enjoy coffee or proper food, without having the feeling they’re ‘just’ inside an indoor playground. I will also tell you more about it in an upcoming story, but can already tell you that it is one of the best child friendly restaurants I have seen. And the entrance is free when you eat/drink something.
When the weather permits I can also recommend going to the beach. There are several options in Zeeland and it is a good way to enjoy the sea, sit or lay down and read a book or do absolutely nothing. There are not many places where you have such variety: farmland, cities and beach. Bie oans oefje does and we look forward seeing Joep and Greetje again.
If you would like to book your stay at ‘Bie oans oefje’ click here.
Hof Poppendamme is located at: Poppendamseweg 3a, Grijpskerke.
Also on Travelharts.com.
On our blog you can read more about a day trip to Neeltje Jans in the story ‘The battle against water‘.
We also have a photo site. Here you can find several photo albums about the Netherlands.