About Me: Pauline van Hasselt

February 18, 2018 , In: Expat Mommy , With: No Comments

I am a bit like marmite, either you love me or you hate me. I am a fire cracker; I love having fun and am always up for a joke. I love connecting people, spending time with my family and friends. But believe it or not, I value my alone time just as much as family time. I would not be able to exist if I did not have any time by myself. At the end of the day I turn of my phone and read in bed, alone. My passion is decorating and organizing every inch of our family home. It drives my husband crazy, but it’s my joy in life. If I would stop redecorating my home, and repainting my furniture you would know Pauline is not herself. I love organizing kids and adult parties, but somehow by working two jobs not a lot of time is left.

After being born in The Netherlands, I was quickly was baptized in the expat life, moving at young age from the Netherlands to Belgium to Paraguay. After I turned 21 I moved to Houston Texas to attend culinary school for one year. Instead I stayed for four years, finding my Italian husband while working as a chef. After our work VISAs ran out, we caught the same flight back to Europe, relocating ourselves to London. Soon thereafter our daughter decided it was time to make her appearance in our lives. We became the young parents of Laila. She was born under the Bow Bells in Whitechapel hospital making her a true cockney girl.

My husbands and I always dreamed of traveling the world, so when Laila turned three we decided to move to Beijing. Our family’s first few months in Beijing summer 2016 where an absolute nightmare, anything that could go wrong went wrong. I was cursing the day we decided to move to China. But slowly life started falling into place; I found work at beijingkids magazine. Being part of the workforce instead of being a stay at home mother has truly changed my experience in Beijing. I have always loved magazines and now I was working for one. I dream came true. Suddenly I was a writer, after successfully working as a chef for 15 years.

The difference between working as a chef and writer could not be bigger. I wanted to quit many times, I did not go to culinary school to become a writer. English is not my first language plus I am severe dyslectic. But I persevered, and now absolutely love the work I do at the magazine. Beijing was a rough start, I was sure we would not find our way here. But now I love this city, it’s the city where the roughest is the roughest, but the best is really the best. The international community is so diverse; I have found more friends here in China than I had after living for four years in London. I wanted to share more of my life in China, giving the world a bit of a peek into my sweet and chaotic life.

I am a mother, a wife, a daughter, a granddaughter, a friend, a writer, a chef, a homemaker, a procrastinator, a perfectionist, a friend, a clothes auction addict, a book lover, a magazine fanatic, a blessing way believer, but most of all I am just Pauline a girl who is pretending to be a adult.

Picture by Dave Studio

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