Archive for the 'Colorado' Category

Apr
13

Spring Update…

Just a quick spring 2010 update as it has been long ago since I posted something on the bog. First some updates about the family.

Saige is growing and growing, she turns 3 in July and talking like crazy, a real girly girl. Started school in January at Primrose, same as Gavin for 3 days but I think she will start soon 4 days as well, when Grandma and Grandpa move up to Wyoming for the summer.

Gavin starts to be a big boy, his clothes and shoes are renewed every 4 months or so, a big Dutch boy probably. He starts full time Kindergarten in September at the Blackrock elementary in our neighborhood, which is right across the daycare they both go to right now. He will turn 5 in June. Also he is getting more interested in playing soccer lately, now the weather starts to get better we are practicing a lot in the backyard.

Christy is going great, she looks awesome as she has been training and training with her fitness courses and running outside. She is enjoying her work from home about 32 hours a week, and lately is travelling a bit more to clients. As a matter a fact we are leaving for Los Angeles tomorrow as I have to extend my Dutch passport and I can’t do this in Denver because lack of biometric scan equipment.

Myself, I am going steady, working out twice a week in a bootcamp, see posts below and also running quite a bit, which will increase now the weather is getting better. Still have a goal to run a half marathon this year or triathlon after the summer.

Work at Staples is going great as well, we are staying as it seems for a longer period in the broomfield building in Colorado. We just merged 280 people from another location into our building so everyone is under one roof. Lots of projects and work to do the coming years.

We are really looking forward to the Summer time. We hopefully had the last snow last week, but you never know in April, gras is starting to get green now. Pool will open on May 29th and the kids can’t wait for that.

We have no big plans around the house for the summer, keep landscaping low maintenance as we want to save for a big overhaul in one or two years when the kids are bit older. So enjoying the sun and grilling from our deck after a day in the pool is probably going to be a lot of weekends of entertainment.

In August or  September we plan to visit Jon in Seattle Washington for a family vacation trip which would be the first time all four of us in an airplane.

Will keep everyone posted more coming Summer or visit our photo blog at http://www.slabbekoorn.us


Dec
31

New Year 2009 and Reflection on 2008

While I am writing this New York is just celebrating New Year, we still have 2 hours to go but its definitely a bit different from the lots of fireworks we have in the Netherlands on the streets, nothing here at all that is the Colorado law.

Tonight me and Christy made lots of food for tomorrow when a couple of our friends and their kids will visit, smokies, spinach artichoke dip, salmon cream cheese tortilla rolls, chocolate fondue, its going to be fun.

A short reflection on 2008…..

On a personal note 2008 probably encompassed two major changes. First of all my company Corporate Express was taken over by Staples Inc. in July of this year. Many changes, some good and some of course a bit sad if you loose a couple of good colleagues and friends who either left voluntarily or where part of the integration restructure process. That said there are many challenges ahead and opportunities with the new company. I am looking forward to 2009 although it will be difficult considering the current Economic conditions in the US.

The second major event in 2008 was probably the sell of Christy’s house and the purchase of my first real house ever. This was both exciting as well as really scary considering we did this in a period, the economy was going down and the house/mortgage financial crisis was really hitting everyone in the US. But with lots of luck and some help we managed to both sell and buy our houses in the same week. Just a week before the big collapse of Lehman brothers on Sept 15 and the Economic and Financial crisis was becoming a major issue.
We are now 2.5 months in our new house and we love it. So much more room for the kids to play and also the view of the mountains and neighborhood are great. The distance to work is about 20 minutes and 15 if I take the toll way.
We are looking forward to 2009 to further enjoy our house and plan to have a real office for Christy in place.

 

So what else sticks in my mind when looking back to 2008, well just a few words with some explanation.

Bailout
Yes the US government decided to basically spend tons of tax money on Financial institutions like Banks and Insurance companies as well as the Car Manufacturers in amounts of 700 billion dollar to prevent bankruptcy and job losses. Not sure if this is really going to help in 2009, I think certain companies will not get enough to survive after all…

Obama / Clinton
Yes for the first time in history this country selected a Democratic Black President. A milestone I believe and a good thing for America and the world after the Bush disaster. It will be though the first years to get back on track with the current financial crisis but with better spending of funds from ending the war in Iraq to internal infrastructure, education and health care projects so job creation can take place  inside this country. I think in a few years the Economic growth will come back. Also remarkable was that Hillary Clinton will take place in Obama’s cabinet after all the mud throwing campaigns during the pre-election period for the Democratic candidate. But yeah that only happens in America right.

Mumbai
The horrifying terror attacks in Mumbai, India are probably the 2nd worst after 911 I can remember. 5 days of terror in several hotels in this capital of India made the world shock and still alert that terrorism is something nobody will ever be prepared for or can protect itself  against completely. Innocent people lost their lives mostly native people from India. Another proof to me that the US should focus more on Afghanistan/Pakistan to destroy any taliban al queda cells hiding in those countries.

Gas cheaper then a glass of beer?
Due to decreasing demand in oil, gas prices have dropped in the US to the lowest levels since years. I gassed up the cars for less then 20 dollars the other day. With 1.48 per gallon, lets say 35 Euro cent per liter, this is even cheaper then drinking a glass of beer in the pub 😉

Sport moments?

I don’t think there are a lot of sport moments I remember this year. The European soccer championship did not bring what I expected from the Dutch national team. Also further in Soccer the Dutch teams seem to loose track with other European countries. Olympic Summer Games where ok, but I think we lost to many spots in the finals when it really became important to win some medals.

Change
Probably the most spoken worth after bailout this year was Change. All around the election in November for the new presidency in the US. Change will definitely be needed after the last 8 years of screw up under Bush and to see in which state he left this country. Lets see how much Change Obama can bring to Washington and how fast he can turn the economy back on track.
That’s probably it right now for 2008, lets see what 2009 will bring…


2009 outlook..

Well not sure what to say about 2009 but there are of course always a couple of goals we have.
Ok the obvious is to say to stay healthy with the whole family and to enjoy every moment with the kids and the wife. But here is my personal small list..

1. Loose some pounds….(probably yearly a goal but food is to good in America 😉 )

2. Make a trip to the Netherlands in the summer (as I need to spend my vacation time under the new Staples rules this might be an obvious opportunity in August)

3. A bigger LCD tv (nice wish, probably ain’t gonna happen till maybe sales by end of the year 😉 )

4. A nice office (well the room is ready, just need to save up a bit for the furniture)

5. Make some trips in the US to maybe Main and California to our friends.

6. Have fun at work with the remaining five folks in our BI team..

7. Have my parents and brother flying in to the US for a visit..

8. Learning Golf this spring/summer (with the new neighborhood golf course, this is definitely on my wish list).
9. Write a bit more on my blog (just too busy with kids to take some time to write)

A pretty long list but we will see next year how far we accomplished that…

 

I WISH EVERYONE A HAPPY AND HEALTHY 2009!!

ARNOLD


Jun
29

Corporate Express soon to be Staples

image

For all friends and family and other interested folks. Yes indeed my company Corporate Express, formerly known as Buhrmann when I worked in Amsterdam,  has been taken over by Staples Inc. Last Friday they announced to have acquired more then 95% of our outstanding ordinary shares. I expect in the next week we will be officially part of Staples Inc.

What happens next is as of this moment unclear, we will have several integration teams formed over the next couple of weeks and they will take some time to analyze our company and its departments and functions. Also it is not clear if and when our name will change, but would be obvious to me with such a brand awareness Staples has in the office products market, due to its retail shops.

For all your Dutch folks who don’t know staples, in the Netherlands they own Office Center retail stores. They are the number 1 retailer in the US and with taking over Corporate Express we are now the Global Leader in the Office Supplies Business to Business as well.