Monday, June 10, 2013

The List

Since we have moved here we have missed some of the "luxuries" of the states (I use the term "luxuries" loosely).  We have actually started an "import" list of the things we miss and want to import when we come home to the states.  We've have received some requests from people wanting to get some stuff for us, so I have decided to publish the list or a registry if you will (since Publix doesn't have one):

  • Kraft Mac and Cheese (We know it's fake, but we love it).
  • Irish Spring Original Soap (I have used this for years and it's only sold in the US).
  • A bag of large marshmallows (Carmen is really needing some).
  • Box of graham crackers (Can you guess what is next on the list)?
  • Hershey bars (My wife is having serious s'mores withdraws). 
  • Jiff Peanut Butter Creamy and Crunchy (The peanut butter here is a little gritty and not as sweet).
  • Boxes of daytime Cold/Flu medicine (Apparently they really use pot here for medical purposes, which is the only reason I can come up with as to why they don't have cold medicine here).
  • Hunt's Manwich Original Sloppy Joe Sauce (This is for me).
  • Coffee-mate Hazelnut Creamers- Singles (My wife will kill for this).
  • Sweetened Condensed Milk (If you don't know what snowcream is, you won't understand).
  • Stevia in the Raw packets (See hazelnut creamer reason).
  • Anti Bacterial Hand Gel (Apparently they are pro bacterial over here).
  • Betty Crocker Cake mix Yellow and Red Velvet (If you know my wife, you know her love affair for cake and all cake products)
  • Betty Crocker Cream Cheese Icing (You can't have Red Velvet cake without out that).
  • Baker's Semi-Sweet Chocolate Squares (Don't ask).
  • Bisquick (For pancakes and biscuits, duh).
  • All the plastic bags you can send (They make good packing and they are like gold over here, although we use them for cat litter).
I know this is an odd list, but we are really craving these things.
Now for the scam, that is right a scam.  If you decide to send these things, send them via the United States Postal Service and claim a "low" value.  Do not send them via UPS or Fedex cause you will need to send a commercial invoice with them and we will have to pay a tariff (an importing tax) on them and it is not worth the hassle.  Your donations can be sent to the Sean and Carmen Withdraw Foundation, care of:

Sean and Carmen Allen
Prinsenstraat 11 II/III
1015DA, Amsterdam

In exchange, if you need some wooden shoes, stroopwafels or anything Dutch you would like we can send that to you.  Although I don't think the Dutch are really known for anything other than wooden shoes.


  1. As someone who went through culture shock, I can understand missing things from home.

    My very serious and very honest opinion is to not do this for right now.

    First, you don't actually need more for a cold or the flu than paracetamol, OJ, lots of water and tea and rest.

    Second, anti-bacterial hand soap is in every grocery store. But it's bad for you. We're not anti-bacterial, we're anti-creating super bugs.

    I used the lack and expense of cake and pancake mixes to learn to bake my own. Same for waffles.

    I know it may not sound very nice, but right now, you need to let the US go a little bit. Yes, things are different here and you're not comfortable, but you won't ever be comfortable if you keep clinging to what you miss.

    You're in hard place and I completely sympathise, I was there, too.

    1. We have been doing really well here by "winging" ourselves off somethings, but it is nice to have a taste from home every now and then. We have anti-bacterial soap, but my wife loves to carry the gel with her. She hates touching all the knobs, handles and not being able to instantly clean her hand. She is still getting use to people touching money and the register and then making your food without cleaning their hands.

    2. Yes, it's nice to have a taste of home, I completely agree. That is why 3X a year or so, I go spend enough money to buy 500kg of decorative stone and bring home one small shopping bag full of goodies. ;)

      You'll probably not find the gel in the grocery store, but at the drogists.

      One thing I have noticed is that I'm sick a lot less here, even with more 'indoor weather'. And I refuse to use anti-bacterial ANYTHING.