The first documented history of my family goes back to the 16th century. Our family probably descended from a noble ancestry who lived on the estate of 'Goed ten Herentem' located in the south of the Netherlands. The picture you see supposed to be our family's 'coat of arms'. The three silver stars are Mispel flowers in the formation of a (St. Andries) cross.
In the 18th century, my ancestors were well known (church) organ builders in southern Netherlands. Bernardus and and later his son Nicolaas van Hirtum for example owned an organ company in Hilvarenbeek. Moreover, in this place a small road is named after the Van Hirtum family. Unfortunately, this handicraft vanished during the centuries. My part of the family moved to Amsterdam where my grandpa (Nicolaas) worked in the heavy industries. My father (Antonius) was the first of the family who studied at the university. A funny fact though is that my father loves to play piano and even played organ for a while.
I was raised in a family of five: Father, mother and two sisters who are born on the same day (but they are not twins!). My 15-month older sister is a medical doctor, and my 9 year younger sister is a postgraduate student in Philosophy and Ancient Studies. My father is an Industrial and Organization psychologist and my mother is specialized in French language and culture. My girlfriend is a PhD candidate in the field of sexual development of youth. As you can see I am from a well educated family. You can probably imagine that we have a lot of discussions at the diner table.