Sunday, October 14, 2018

Last breaths of life of Summer??

Goodmorning everybody!

Just for ten minutes more it is morning LOL!
Oh, the last few days we had fantastic weather. yesterday temperatures were , I think, around 25/26C here, gorgeous!
Today we have still another day with lovely temperatures of may be 24, and for a few more days we still will be able to enjoy real pleasant weather. But.....(as there is always a but..)from midweek all will come to temperatures that will be normal for the time of year.
So no more than 16-17C(which is not really bad), but something different from today's weather.
Oh well, let's enjoy the (perhaps or probably)last warm breath of Summer.

Jan went to the doctor last Monday, to have his ear fixed and it did work.
So he says he cann hear in stereo again now, hahaha.
He also finished the front windows, they are looking good, but there only was a slight little problem there. We have a little window in the large one, that at times we open for a bit of fresh air. Only after the paint job, it didn;t open again. Oops, he forgot to open it while he was painting it. Never mind, he managed to remove the bit off paint that got it stuck, with not a lot of trouble, and we can open and close it again.
There are always little things that give you some extra work.
Like this week when I did a laundry and had a duvet I washed and wanted to dry outside(yes, this duvet I can wash in the machine, it's not a "real"duvet with feather in it). I flopped it over the line, only when I used a bit of force to hand it right the line snapped. Bummers, now I had to put another line. Looked around in the house, I thought I still had a bit of line, but no, couldn't find it. Problem.
I found the solution. I had a lot of thick binding wire for plants, real soft and strong, so I made a drying line out of that. Pfffff, finally I could hand my duvet.
You see, not a big problem, but there often happens a little thing makes a job you want to do takes more time.

It was such nice weather yesterday that I walked to the market. We needed a bit of fresh veggie and some cheese and so I bought that.
I passed the gardening stand(very dangerous) and yes, I bought us some spring bulbs. I bought some mini tulips great for in a big pot, some a bit larger tulips and some daffodils. Over the years all my daffodils disappeared and I love to see them in early spring, they are so bright and bring a bit of happy feelings in still rather gloomy days.
Now it is up to Jan to plant them(of course I could do it, but it gives him something to do, hahaha).

Oh, this week Jan and I went into city town, to buy him a pair of new shoes. I was urging him already for a long time to buy some new ones and then a pair that would give him could support. With his not too good back, he needs that. So finally we went and hoorray, he found a pair. They look kind of sporty, but not too much, and he said they walked very well when he tried them on a walk. Good, something I don't have to think about anymore for some time.

This week I have the clusters from Arlene, made with the Peacock's Sanctuary kit. They are so lovely.  I am always amazed about her work, how she can come up every time with such lovely clusters and great quick-pages.

About time now to finish this post and watch an episode of Gardener's World I registered from Friday evening. I love that program and they always have some good tips.
Take care of yourselves, have a wonderful week!
Download   HERE

Sunday, October 07, 2018

My husband still can amaze me, LOL!

Goodafternoon everybody!

It is just after 12.00 so I am not really late. But first I had a long sleep today, I woke up around 8.30 then had a cup of tea, and my still weren´t awake, so I decided to take an extra nap on the couch, and oh boy, it did me good!!
The weather is still rather good, yeah. during this week temps did creep up again to around 20-21C, now today we have a temperature dipp again, it will not be more than 15C, but the sun is shining.
Then it will be better and better during coming week, if all will come true we will have up to 22-23C from Wednesday, wow!

This week I survived an attack of cleaning rage, LOL! No, serious, beginning this week I was busy in the kitchen, adn noticed that the drainer for the dishes and such could do with a thourough cleaning, and one thing lead to another, so a part of the kitchen had a good cleaning, plus the toilet, and did a laundry and some other things.
Pffff, I got tired of myself that day, hahaha.(but also was satisfied at the same time, I finally dug up some extra energy)
Wednesday Jan and I took our flu shot. and then  saw Jan talking with the secreatary about an appointment with the doctor!!!
Amazing. I tried to persuad him for two or three weeks to make an appointment(for his coughing and also to ask about his nails, he has very bad looking nails at the moment, they are very brisk and aweful looking) and now finally he made one.
So he had that on Friday, got a tablet for his cough, and he probably has a kind of virus or bacterie in his nails, it just has to grow out, doctor said. Well, hopefully after a few weeks that will be done with.
I do hope the tablet will help for his cough, because for him it is annoying.
The doctor really had to search for a medication, that Jan could have, because of his other medicins(specially his liver).
He has another appointment tomorrow, Monday, that is to clean one ear. He complained that he could hear much less with his right ear, doctor looked, seems he has some "dirt'there, that is the cause.
So tomorrow the doctor will spray the ear clean.

Oh, there is some good news. It seems, that slowly some parakeets are coming back. Last week we saw at least two, sometimes early morning and sometimes towards the evening. Yesterday we even had 4 again! They only stay for a short visit, but still, they found their way to us again. Silly, may be, but  am kind of relieved I saw them again.

Because of the mild weather, several things in the garden are still blooming, ,like a bush rose that has it's second flowering, wow.
Then we still have some dahlia's even fuchsia's that are still in bloom.
With this kind of weather it is hard to imagine that in about 2½ months
we already have Christmas. It soon will be time for me to think about one or two or may be more Christmaskits.
At the moment I am busy with a kit, so may be after I finished that one, I could already start on a Christmaskit, and work on that together with working on a general one.

Not this Saturday, but the Saturday before, we had a delicious easy dinner. I found a recipe for braised beef, then we ate the meat pulled on a sandwich(a bun), and it was sooo good.
It is meat you will have to take time for, but the good thing about it is also that you can prepare it one or two days in advance. It just takes 4 or 5 hours on the stove.
This is the recipee I used:
It is made with ca. 500 grams of braised beef, which could be good for 4 persons.

2 tablespoons of sunflower oil
2 shredded onions
2 cloves of garlic pressed
tablespoon grated fresh ginger (or use dried powder)
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
1 or 2 tablespoons sweet soy sauce (careful with the amount, preferably less than too much)
1 tablespoon of sambal (that is a hot pepper sauce from Indonesia, if you don;t have that in stock, use chili powder or flakes, or another strong pepper in sauce or even a chopped fresh one, and be careful with the quantity too, it depends on how much you like strong spicy food, if not so much, use less, obviously)
2 teaspoons of cinnamon

Heat the oil in a thick-bottomed frying pan, and fry the onions for about 3 minutes. Add the meat and fry until golden brown. Then add all other ingredients, add water until the meat is just below. Leave to simmer for approx. 4 hours (or until the meat is super soft) Add extra water if the meat is boiling dry.
Then simmer the meat for about 1 hour without a lid on the pan.
Pull the meat apart and put on the buns.
Nice to put some lettuce on the sandwiches, possibly some fresh cucumber slices,or whatever is at hand or to your liking, and some coriander.

Your bun could look like this.

Note for the ingredients, specially the spices. I often use spices as I have in stock, improvise a bit, and often the result is even better!
And also about the quantaties given in recipes, often you just have to use them exactly, (I think about baking), but in stews like this, or oven recipes, you often can improvise a bit(like i often do.)
Well, may be  have given you an idea for a meal in a weekend. Hope the recipe is clear enough.
it is worth a try, I found it very yummie, and I will certainly will make it again.

Good I think  have written a long anough post for today
Now it is time for you second part of the Peacock's Sanctuary kit.
Have a wonderful week, stay safe and healthy, please!

Download part 2 HERE

Oh boy, I just noticed now that on the preview I didn;t put the name of the kit! I am getting sloppy. Sorry for that.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Almost October! Can you believe it?

Goodafternoon everybody!

Yes, time goes as it goes, but it is a shame that we are saying goodbye to September already. We did had some days with rather nice weather, also days with less, most of it because the temperatures weren;t all too high. But you can expect that at this time of the year.
This week again we will start with temps around 15-16C, later in the week we may reach again 18C.

What did  do this week?
All the usual things, of course. Then i got busy in the garden, i did prune a lot of the ivy, really necessary!. It looks already much better now, but i think I will have to do another round one of these weeks.
Jan got busy on painting the two front windows, with one it was really necessary, because the paint began to come off. Now the window looks good again and today Jan is doing the second window.
So that will be ready for wintertimes.
I am a bit worried for Jan however. I have the idea he isn;t feeling 100%, but asking him has little use and he isn;t often speaking out about those things. Difficult man at times, believe me.
e said however that he though he was retaining a bit too much fluid, specially in his belly (and I don;t like that), with consequence he has gained a bit on weight. Not yet spectaculair, but he decided he would raise a little bit the mg. intake on one medicin(he has permission for that from his doctor). Now we must keep a good eye on his weight(and belly) and see if that helps. His next appointment with his doctor in hospital isn;t due till in November.
But let;s first see how the raise of the medicin works.

This week we will take our flu shot (our first). We though it might be a good idea to do it this year, with all the trouble we have gone through the last year. Better try to be as prepared as possible!

One thing however brightens my life for sure, and that is the start of a new season of Strictly come dancing on the BBC. I saw already the first two and it was great again. There are a few very good candidates again.I just love that program.

Still not very much birds in the garden. Perhaps there is one explanation for the parakeets. Jan read in the local newspaper that they found  a new place to sleep and that is in the middle of the city, around the government buildings(there is a lake, the Hofvijver and also quite some big trees around), so that might explain why they don;t come(yet) to our garden anymore. Their last "hiding"place was in a park, a bit closer to our home.
We will just have to wait and see during winter.

While I am at the computer, and Jan is outside painting, I though it would be nice to have some music(I do that at times when I am busy at the computer), but this time I put on some classical music, for now the Nocturnes of Choping. Beautiful music, so romantic. However I don't like all of them the same. Nr.1 is lovely, so is nr.2 and there are more.It also depends on the performing artist, every performer has his or her own interpretation, and it makesa big difference , believe me!
Of course  have lots of LP's with piano music, but I also like at times some violin, or guitar or other instruments, or just orchestral music.
But other times I put on some "modern"music, and I have many favourites in there too.
Music brings peace, happiness, it can be a comfort. It's is just something fantastic.

Okay, time to finish this post. I have a new kit for you. Lately I got several requests if I had the links for a Peacock kit. I did one a few years ago. Well, i don;t have a link anymore, I believe I even don;t have the kit anymore. To cut it short, I've made another kit, with a peacock theme, I named it Peacock's Sanctuary. I got carried away a little bit when busy on it, so it has become a rather big kit. That's why i decided to split it in two downloads. You get one today and the second next Sunday. Hope you don;t mind.

Have a lovely week.
Download part 1 HERE

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Some Royalty this week.

Goodafternoon everybody!

Weather report: start of the week still good with nice temperatures, after Wednesday temperatures went down and today we have only around 15-16C! Brrr, hard to get used to. That with quite some rain it suddenly seems to be autumn indeed. However, later this week we may have some rise of temperature again to may be 19C and more sunshine.

This week, on Tuesday, we had our Prinsjesdag again, which is the official opening of the parliamental year. It is always nice to look at the ride of the King and Queen in their carriage. And there always is the IG question: what dress will our Queen Maxima wear?
she had a very nice one, although I have to admit it wasn;t her most beautiful. Well, you can judge for your own, I have a nice link to an English site with lots of photos.
And admit, we do have a really charming and good looking Queen!
here is the link to more nice photos

What else happened? h yes, of course there was the final of the America got's talent with our Glennis Grace. She didn;t win it, such a pity, but we are still very proud of her. And it already is a fantastic achievement to have reached the finals.

Yesterday I made a phonecall to my friend Heidi, just to hear if all was okay, and it wasn;t. Stupid girl made a fall last week on the street, and banged her head. It all seemed to have turned out weel, without real big conseqeunces, she only has a very bruised face in all kind of colors now. I was very cross with her, because she didn;t let me know.
I asked her if she had been at the ER at the hospital. She finally went there after 2 days! Then they have made a scan and there was no real internal damage, still she was held in hospital over 1 night, just to check. She has been very lucky, I guess. It is kind of tricky with her, if she gets wounds because she used bloodthinners. I believe she has to take a bit less for a shorter time, but all together she did give me a scare, you know!
So if all goes normal, I want to visit her tomorrow at some time, just to see her for a moment.
It really isn;t her year, because she also has trouble with the new implanted line for her lung medicins, so probably it needs to be replaced and then it may be necessary that she undergoes an operation to or around her heart, to close a bloodvain by burning it. It seems she has a bloodvain(lucky a little one)too much or so, and it disturbes the bloodpressure on her heart, making it working in a very high rythm at times. 
All this has to be done in October or November, as quickly as possible anyway, as soon as there is room in the operation schedule of the hospital. it would be nice if the two operations could be done at the same time, she has to ask that at an appointment start October, but that might be a problem. Also she has the bad luck that she cannot have a complete anesthesia, because of her lung illness. 
No, she isn;t having much luck this year.

Is there perhaps some brighter news too? Nothing special, really.
All things go as they go at the moment. I do my little things around the house, as everybody has to do LOL. And with the weather not being fantastic, we spend more time indoors now. When we still had the nice weather, beginning of the week, I did some re-planting in the garden of some smaller bushes(well, they have to become that in time hahaha), and a I splitted up a few plants, because they have become too big. 
The "extra"bits so to speak, I planted in another spot. Good way to get some more plants and at the same time it unites the planting. 
Also dug up some bulbs of gladiolusses and smething else, of which i don;t know the name. We had them in a smaller border, but it wasn;t the good place for them. I planted part of them in another place, where I can give them more easily some support. Another part is lying in the little shed, till I have figured out where to plant them.
Jan also put away the chairs and umbrella, I don't think we will need them anymore this year. and if we still would have some nice days, we do have another pair of smaller chaires we can put at the patio.

something strange is happening though. The last few weeks we hardly see any birds. Just a couple of doves(normally we have a bunch of them), almost no or no parakeets at all, also other birds we don;t see.
Now Jan read in a newspaper that there is a might be a reason of a pesticide used, but it isn;t yet proven that rreally that is a reason.
And this might apply to some species of birds but not all of them. Could it have to do with the dry summer? Or perhaps there is somebody in the nieghbourhood who doesn;t like birds and is doing aomething about it(don;t know what, but it might be a possibility?). Anyway, I think it is very strange, specially that I don;t see my parakeets anymore. we always had at least two or three that ALWAYS came by for a bit of apple or some birdseed. We just will have to wait and see what happens later in the year.

Good, think I covered all I could tell you, I think my washing machine is ready with the laundry. Will hang that out to dry, then I want to make some apple compote. It is so yummie when you make it yourself and it doesn;t take much time. Most of the time is taken by peeling the apples and cutting them.
Today I have two sets of clusters from Arlene for you, and next week there will be a new kit, okay?
Wishing you a lovely Sunday and fantastic week to come, hope everybody is safe from tornado effects and such.
Till next week.
Download    HERE
Download   HERE

Sunday, September 16, 2018

A bit of Holland to America!

Goodafternoon everybody!

The weather here is okay and large part of next week it will only get better and warmer, kind of second summer. Well, you know i don;t mind a bit of nice temperatures of around 25 C.
 don;t think it will last for very long, but every day like that is better than one with ice and snow!

Jan is still suffering from his cold, not couching as much as he did, he only suffers from it in periods, it seems. Worst is when he wants to lie down to sleep, then it gets to him. But.... perhaps mending is around the corner. He slept this night for quite a long time, without having to cough. let's hope it will go upwards from now.

I am a bit angry with myself, perhaps silly, but true. I should have made a few phonecalls this week, but i didn;t make them. I did feel rather tired and tried to sleep some extra in the mornings, so that kind of "disturbed" my normal "schedule". Still I could have made those calls. Now I must make them next week. I really hope I can live up to that promise to myself LOL!

Apart from that, all went rather well I can say. I did finish a new kit, so that is a good thing, and i even started another one(well, I chose the color scheme and made 1 or two papers, haha).
And yes, we have a Dutch lady singer who entered America;s got talent and she is in the finals now! I have to say she is a really good singer and on top of that she also is a very nice women. I have for you two links, so if you want you can look and listen to her.
First if a video with her audition song and second is with a video of her semi final song plus a newspaper article.
Wouldn;t it be fantastic if she actually would win this contest?
Well, here are the links for those interested and if by any chance you think our Glennis deserves to win, well, America, you can vote for her!
If you want to know more about the contest and the other finalists, you surely would be able to find that on Google.

The finals will be broadcast on America's Got Talent network NBC at 8pm ET on Tuesday and Wednesday, September 18-19. 

Okay, I did my bit of promotion here, I think LOL!

So now it is about time to have a sandwich and also to look at my pan with a stew of lamsmeat, with some paprika, onion and mushrooms in it, to see if it is ready. Then I only will have to boil some potatoes later.
Today I have clusters from Arlene, made with the Stories told without words kit.
Have a great week and I hope everybody stays safe, (with all those hurricanes around!).

Download    HERE

Sunday, September 09, 2018

We cleared a bit the garden.

Goodafternoon everybody!

Hmmmm, I am kind of late today. But I had some late winks this morning, I was up rather early, but after a while my shutters fell down again, so  took some extra sleep. Probably needed some.
Jan also slept late today, but that more because he didn;t sleep a lot last night. Probably caused by some caughing he did almost all the time.
It started yesterday late afternoon, and it didn;t stop. we took his temperature, but that was normal(I already was glad about that). I think he caught a cold or so which is playing those tricks with him.
Well, he just has to "sit"it out, I suppose. You know how he is about going to our doctor with things( very difficult, must be very bad before he makes an appointment, sigh!).
May be the weather in the cming days will help somewhat, next few days, at least till Wednesday, temps will rise again to around 22C, sometimes with some clouds, but also lots of sunshine and probably no rain. Then they say on the weather channel that the temperatures will drop again somewhat to around 19C. Okay, I can live with that, although the 22-23C sounds better , hahaha.

Last week and start of this one, we filled a lot of big plastic sacks with lots of pruning stuff, weeds and mostly dried pine needles that comes of the huge fir tree of the neighbour. Alltogether I think we filled  around 10 big sacks. So I called the city council to have those sacks picked up by the "garden-garbage"truck. We had to put the stuff outside on Thursday evening and yeah, oh miracle, they did pick it up on Friday!

What happened the rest of the week? I cannot remember much so it must have been a rather quiet week. Funny thing though happened.
During the week I was thinking about Jan's sister, who lives in Belgium now. They don;t have a lot of contact but the last couple of years a bit more. So I though I should send her a little email this weekend, just to say we were more or less okay and such. And what happened? before I did so, she was on the phone yesterday. Strange things sometimes happen.

I also did some designing on the computer, I am busy with one kit, but it is only progressing slowly. So that one I couldn;t finish for this weekend. I already had that feeling midweek or so, which made me decide to make a smaller one, so that I had at least something for you to download. Pffff, I just finished it yesterday afternoon and got it uploaded this morning. Near escape ROFL!

Oh, sometimes there are happy things that happen! There was a huge problem about deporting two children from the Netherlands back to Armenia. Those children came here as they were 2/3 years old, so they lived all their life here in the Netherlands, folowed dutch school, talk Dutch as native language etc. First it has to nbe said that of course lots of refugees that come here cannot stay here, at least, they have to go back to their country when that is safe for them. And there are also lots of "economical"refugees trying to get asylum here, which is a different category, so to speak. But sometimes there are circumstances that you just cannot strickly follow the law only.
I have two newspaper articles for you(if you want to know more about this case). Those children were in suspence till almost the last minute(they must have almost a trauma about it now, they certainly need peace and quiet now and some stability), but then suddenly the minister who decided they had to go, changed his mind(well, perhaps he didn;t completely by heart, but he used his right of discretion) and the children can stay in the Netherlands. And I am very happy about it.
Those children would have had a very uncertain future in Armenia, whcih no one could want for them.
No, I am not saying that it should happen for everybody, but one thing that is causing this "problem"is that the procedures are taking much too long time(sometimes 5 to 10 years, like with these children), and that is no good at all.
And there are still some cases like this one, also with children that are already here from very young age and don;t get a permit to stay after 8 or 10 years. That isn;t right. They are brought up herespeak Dutch, are Dutch as we, followed school etc. You cannot be serious to send them back to their native country, with which they have no connection at all.
I know, it is a tricky subject to discuss and very difficult to handle, but in a certain number of cases government should give children a "pardon", meaning they can stay here as Dutch citizen and live and built their their life here.
Okay, enough said, here are the two links to the articles, that explain not all, but a bit about the case.

Enough rambling now, time to say goodbye and give you the download for the small kit, named Autumn is Close.
Have a fantastic week ahead and if all is well, I will be there again next Sunday.

Download    HERE

Sunday, September 02, 2018

Sometimes I really accomplish something, hahah!

Goodafternoon everybody!

Today we seem to have a lovely day. Better weather started around Thursday, and it will even get better. Next few days we will have temperatures around 21-23C, perhaps later in the week a chance of a rainshower here and there. So that is good weather for Semptember.

My tomatoe crop is almost over. The few that are on the plant might get ripe next twoo weeks or so. Then we will have to remove all of them from the pots, get the soil out of the pots(may be we will safe half of it to mix with the garden soil or so) and clean the pots so they can be used fresh again next year.
We still have some flowering going on ion the garden. The clematis is giving it's last shot, the smaller rose bushes still produce some flowers, a larger one is getting into a third flowering!
Still on th corn flowers( but they are getting at their end too now), of course the dahlia's start now, and I am happy that some of the bulbs sutvived and flower again. We lost a few of them, probably because we didn;t store them properly.But never mind, that is gardening: you win some and you loose some.

Last Monday  got a shot of extra energy I suppose, I cleaned my fridge of the inside(and it was about time, hahah). So I did it in a quiet tempo, and it had gone well and I am happy with a fridge that is "freshened up"again.
The rest of the week I did some ordinairy stuff in the house, and even spent a bit of time at the computer, so  have a new kit for you today.

Happy to say that not much disturbing happened this week. I think I am really getting a bit old when I am glad to be able to say that, am I?????

Okidoki, it is about all I can tell you about this week(although I am almost sure that I am forgetting something, I should takes little notes during the week to remember, ROFL). Time to post the kit and then i will sit down for a moment at the couch with a sandwich and watch an episode or two perhaps of Bargain Hunt on the BBC.

Have a great week and stay safe!

Download    HERE

 It looked as if last post on last Sunday didn;t post, so I "updated it and now it is on my blog. Very strange.