Thursday, June 18, 2009

Ot en Sien

I'm a very proud aunty of three beautiful kids... two girls and a litlle boy. I sometimes feel really sad that I'm not around to see them growing up. Luckily there is skype, so I can have a chat with them a few times a week. Well, it's not really chatting. It's more that I'm listening, and they tell me heaps of things. Then I nod and laugh or say.. 'that's great, auntie Monique is so proud of you!' Obviously most of the time I'm absolutely clueless about what they are on about, but it's just fun to see them and hear them getting all excited!

My oldest niece just turned four a few months ago (haha, my sister didn't sit still) and goes to school now. She tells me all about it. This week they had to come to school dressed in Ot en Sien style. Hmm, I hear you think...'what is Ot and Sien'?

Ot and Sien are the main characters in a series of Dutch children's tales that were very popular in the first half of the twentiest century.

Ot (short for Otto) and Sien (short for e.g. Francine) are two next door neighbors, a boy and a girl. Their illustrations were based on two children that actually lived in Holland. The stories are situated in Drenthe that was at the time the most impoverished province of the Netherlands where quite a few people were still living in dwellings constructed of peat and sods. The surrounding poverty is nowhere to be seen in the stories that depict a very idealized version of reality.

I must admit though, I have always loved the books about Ot and Sien. I especially love the illustrations and the childish simplicity of the stories.

So it was very nice to receive this picture of my niece dressed up as a little Sien of the past. Cute!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Monique,
    Oh, how cute is your niece.
    I also love the dress up, this would make a great painting.