Thursday, January 29, 2009

Update on a caravan, a cake, puppies and a heart.

Last things first: Look what Heleen has sent me:

At her birthday give away I won one of her self made hearts. I am so happy with it. We are redecorating my daughters room. Changing it from a purple Arabic 1001 nights room into a Pip room and this heart will look so good over there. See that lovely Pip sticker? I love love love such details. Photos of that room will follow, but it is still under construction. DIY didn't go as planned and after a lot of 'I told you so's' and other not so nice words, we are now taking a break. It was either that or a divorce lol.

It's übercute, thanks again Heleen.

One of my favorite bloggers Marja was having her birthday yesterday, a special birthday while she turned 50. So I sent her this:

Alas no room for the 50 little candles. I think it's the first time that I have made a card that was not my own design, in fact it's Tammy Gilley's. She told how to make this cake card here. But still I liked working on this card anyhow.

I sent these labels last Tuesday to Karla for the puppy love tag swap. I have used some images of Stacey again. Thanks Stacey, I hope you are on the mend now! I have three kitty love tags too, hope that no one makes a problem of that. And one tag seem to have no dog at all...


he's just around the corner!
If you want to see the real thing, don't forget to check Karla's blog for she is having the cutest Yorkshire puppies over there!

This week I have been so busy jumping in and out caravans joining the 'One world one heart' give away. It's so stimulating to see what everybody has come up with, like home made pickles, goat soap, illustrated books, dolls, jewelry, you name it. It really is a creative caravan and there are already more than 700 (!) participants. It is still not too late to jump on. The last opportunity is February 3rd midnight PST, that's February 4th seven o'clock in the morning for us Dutchies. Read all about it here.

Of course you can still enter my give away here. I'm closing comments over there at February 11th, midnight CET.
Let's give Lisa a big hug for making this possible.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

One world one heart 2009

Yep, I'm jumping on the gypsy caravan again. Lisa 'Oceandreamer' Swifka hosts this fun give away event for the third time in row. There are already over 500 participants and the caravan is still growing. Want to know more? Just click on Lisa's name or the button above this post.

Here is my give away:

There are actually 4 prizes!

These are not empty boxes, the idea is vintage inspired. You have that sewing box from your great aunt and inside there is this small heart shaped box and when you open it:

There are all kind of vintage knick knacks!

To enter the drawing for this give away:

* You must have a blog.
* Give one comment, one only, on this post.
* Tell me in your comment which box (number) you would like to win plus your lucky number and your (2) initials, so that I'm sure that the box you'll win suits you fine.

That's it!

I'll be closing comments February 11th midnight CET (that is 6 til 9 hours before midnight in the US!).
The winners will be announced on this blog on February 12th.

A closer look of the contents. This may vary a little, but these things you can expect in your heart shaped box, if you are a winner of course!

Don't forget to take a look at the blogs of other participants! There are a lot of amazing prices to win but more important; this is a great way to meet new friends!

Thanks Lisa for hosting!

ps. Some credits: the image of box one was found here, thanks Stacey!
The image of box 2 was given by this lovely lady, thanks again Beth!

Good luck!

Comments are closed now at 302 comments.
Thank you!

You'll find the winners here.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Typical Dutch

Thanks for all wishes to get well soon. Yep I'm on the mend. Something that always makes me feel better is a little walk around town:

Some people are still having Christmas, I took this photo today, or is this early Valentine?

I like those wall decorations that give clues to the history of the houses, in this case;
small skipper guild house (nowadays it should be spelled differently), as I walked very near the port.

This one cheered me up too, if you had one of these it would almost be a pleasure to spend all day on the 'loo'.

Last week I read somewhere that there is going to be a musical about the Hema. Time to introduce you to the Hema, which is the most typical Dutch department store! So I love it!
The Hema started in 1926 in Amsterdam. Now every town in the Netherlands has it's own. What is so special about it?

Everything the Hema sells are products that are only sold here. Their designs are original and refreshing and are selling at low prices! Here you see some cleaning products. You would almost make it your hobby.

Their two most famous products are snacks;
The typical 'hema worst', it's a kind of hot dog like sausage.
The other is the 'tompouce' a kind of pastry made of 3 layers and yes the top layer is that pink.
Pictured are both Hema heroes in a dog toy edition.
(the sausage is on the left, the pink pastry on the right lol).

If you ever visit the Netherlands, don't forget to visit the Hema!
They have an online store, but I don't think they will ship world wide.

When I came back from my walk I worked on the tags for the Valentine puppy love swap (now full) that Karla is hosting. Picture is a bit blurry, but this is only meant as a peek.

Next post will be my give away for One World One Heart, a fun event that I joined last year too. Check here for the details. So stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

January blues

Not everybody has removed their Christmas decorations. I was happy to see this on my Sunday walk through the Vleeschhouwersstraat (the Butchers'street, this name will not surprise you!)

January just isn't my favorite month. I hate to complain, but I started this month on penicillin against an inflammation of my tonsils and now I'm having a sore throat again. Well that's said. I'm sure that you guys really have something better to do than to listen to my moaning. I'll just show you what I did last week. Last week started cold and I think all Dutch bloggers showed some photos of their beautiful surroundings. I'll do that too, here is my street:

It was my daughters idea to walk to the park around the corner for some photos. I loved that idea.

Another 19th century town house. Here the new riches started to settle in the late 19th early 20th century. As Dordrecht is a medieval town, it is built like a circle. The 19th century part is like a peel around an orange around that medieval circle. Hence this part of town where I live is called 'the 19th century peel' or in Dutch 'de 19de eeuwse schil'.

When my kids were small we went to this park everyday. To play and to feed the ducks and deer.

As some ladies and their kids were doing in 1906 too!
This park Merwestein was already there in 1786 and it's a public park since 1885.

Last Saturday we went to Utrecht:

Another beautiful city in the center of our country. In the background you can see the famous Dom tower.
Utrecht is also known for it's lovely antique shops:

I would love to have this big tin to put in my most precious vintage Christmas ornaments, but the price tag said 56 euros (74 usd). I thought it was way too expensive, what do you think?

In most shops everything is locked away in showcases. I can understand that, especially here in the Pijpenla, where a lot of stuff is kept in the basement. What I don't understand is why they put the price tags upside down. So you have to get somebody upstairs, let them unlock one showcase, ask: 'What does that cost, and that and that?' and then move on to the next show case. Well, to tell you the truth the few price tags that were visible kept me from doing that. Like that card in the background in a quite common frame had a visible tag; 35 euros ( 46 dollars). I would sell all my cards in frames like that, if somebody would buy at that price. Interested? Just shoot me an email!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Everything back to normal?!

Yep, he isn't wearing his Santa hat anymore. I'm always late with removing the Christmas decorations.

I packed my nativity scene yesterday.
When you look carefully, there is something very odd about this set. I inherited it from my parents and I'm not sure whether the set was actually theirs' or my grandparents'. My mother was a very practical woman who decorated minimal for Christmas. We used to live in a very small apartment. Having a Christmas tree meant that something else had to be moved. Where to? That was the problem. We always had a Christmas tree and in my memory my mother hated it every year. So I'm not having many memories about this scene and the (very ugly) stable that goes with it. The set wasn't put up every year, that's for sure.

The odd thing about this set are the proportions of the statues. Look here are two shepherds. One is so much bigger than the other.

and baby Jesus looks about 5 years old in comparison to Mary. While packing I suddenly had a 'vision'; perhaps my mother made one undamaged nativity scene out of two. It would be so much like her. Throwing the damaged chalk statues of their nativity set as well as those of my grandparents' set away and keeping the best ones, no matter that there is a difference in size. So now I have a large Jesus, big and small Kings and a smile on my face, I'm not sure whether she actually did this, but the thought that she could have done it is enough to make me smile.

The best thing about this nativity scene is the way it is packed. Do you keep your old newspapers to pack again and again and again? I even reread them :-O

Does tea (=thee) work against fall-out? That was something that was bothering the population beginning Januari 1962 (the answer is and was no!). Does anybody cares nowadays what to do against fall out?

And there is some vintage Christmas wrapping paper to pack with too.
Every year I put the statues back in newspapers starting from 1956 and ending 1965. This takes too much time actually. So that's why the first week of Januari already ruins my resolutions. At least I got this excuse!

There is more Christmas in this blog post;

Remember Wanda? She and I were swap mates in Sweet and Sinister swap. The vintage cupcake plates that I sent her back then didn't make it in one piece, so I sent her another totally Dutch package as some sort of consolation. Sorry I have forgotten to make pictures and I think Wanda has forgotten that too. At the end of 2008 Wanda sent me a Christmas goodie bag and a whole box of snacks, which disappeared miraculously ;-). I love it!

And the last Christmassy item until let's say December 2009 should have been the award that was given to me  by Jeanette, 'the Christmas spirit award' but I cannot upload photos for the last three hours :-(. I guess I should have chosen another title for my blog post.
Just check Jeanette's blog, she is the Dutch styling queen! Her home appeared in one of our major home decorating magazines 'Ariadne at home'. She has fab, authentic and creative ideas about home decorating.

I received a lovely award from Elly too. Well I guess you all know Elly's crisp and lovely blog by now and if you don't just pop over, you won't be sorry! I was planning to do something immediately with those rewards, another resolution that doesn't work, though this time it's Blogger's fault.
Ok there is no reason to write another post about this soon!
See you soon!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

Translation: Sincere wishes because of the New Year!

I like to wish each and every one of you a very happy, healthy and creative 2009! 2008 was a great year to me having so many valuable blogfriendships, I want to thank you all for that!

Do you have some resolutions? I always have, even if there isn't a change of years ;-), here we go:

1. No chocolate nor lumps of cheese shall be eaten by me during Januari. In stead of that I will be art journaling. :-)

2. I'll try to write down a little family history together with my aunt, who isn't aware of this resolution, but I'll need her help to complete this one.

3. Starting a little project 'a smile a week'; I'll try to surprise somebody in a pleasant way once a week at least. Stay tuned for more about this project.

4. I want to blog more, write more often, perhaps (I will not make this one a promise!) shorter posts, create more!

(This is what I sent Elly winner of my October give away)

With of without resolutions 2009 will be a special year!

In April hubby and I will celebrate the fact that it is 30 years ago that we were dating for the first time. Oh my, there were times that I thought that 30 was an age for dinosaurs let alone that somebody could do anything for 30 years!

We booked a trip for 2009:

What do I have to say? Well, that we are all looking very much forward to this!

I do hope 2009 will be filled with fun and laughter for all of us!

What are your plans?