Sunday, January 24, 2016

Shopper SewAlong

We all know how terrible plastic bags are  for the environment.  In the Netherlands Dutch shops are banned from giving away free plastic bags to their customers starting January 1, 2016. Plastic bags are still available but you pay for it. I wonder if this will limit the use of these bags. For me, I always bring my own shopper.
I follow the blog byMiekk  and she organized a Shopper Sewalong to make a good start into the new year:  using our own hand sewed shopper.
The tutorial is in Dutch but it is easy to follow. 
In the tutorial canvas is used, but jeans works too. Since I didn't have any of these in my drawers I used a lighter weight fabric. This can be fold up small 
and it's easier to stash in my purse if I need it, since I will not be using this one for grocery shopping.
I found this fabric
And started..
Because I sewed in the evening I wasn't able to make good pictures but in the is my shopper.

 Not my own design but don't have name labels yet.

 Ready to take to the store!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Our Weekend Away

Happy New Year 2016!!!

It has been almost a year that I've posted something on my blog.  One of my new year´s resolution: to give it a new start again......

For our birthdays we got a gift card for "A Weekend Away" from our daughter Naomi and son Leon and their families. The last weekend of October was going to be a nice sunny weekend so we decided to leave on Thursday and stay 3 nights. I had checked earlier on  WeekendAway's website where we could use the gift card. I was born and raised in the province of Drenthe (northern part of the Netherlands), so we choose for a mystery hotel in Drenthe. Where and which hotel , we would find out  after making the reservation. I love surprises!
It turned out to be the "Abdij de Westerburcht" in Westerbork, a town centrally located in Drenthe.

We left on Thursday. It´s a 175 km (108 miles) drive. Instead of heading straight to the hotel, we stopped in Beilen, a town near Westerbork, parked the car and walked to the town of Brunsting, just outside of Beilen. My maiden name is Brunsting and my father and his ancestors were all born in Brunsting. Instead of a town you can say hamlet as there were just some farms. Nowadays there are 30 households living in Brunsting.
*PS  photos are best seen when clicked on, this is for every photo on my blog* 
 The history of Brunsting.
 My aunt told me that this  used to be the families farm but it has been renovated over the years.

Later in the afternoon we arrived in Westerbork at our hotel.
Abdij de Westerburcht.
Small room but we'll be gone all day anyway. 

Across from the hotel was the Museum van Papierknipkunst (Paper cuts).
It's a small non-profit museum.
I took some pictures.....

......but was caught in action: PHOTOGRAPHS NOT ALLOWED.....

Next day was going to  be a nice, sunny day again. We walked to Orvelte, a museum village, 5 km up the road.

Here we are entering Orvelte. There is a saw mill, a blacksmith and a wooden shoe maker, all open to the public. A number of events are held throughout the year featuring traditional Dutch activities but it was the end of October, not the summer (tourist) season, so no activities were going on.
The old toll house

Here you see typical Drents monumental farmhouses​

Interlacem​ent of straw
Traditional​l interlacem​ent of straw were used for these old barns. This decoration was born out of shortage. Farmers often had no plank wood left to finish building the barn. Wood is relatively expensive. To finish the wall ,straw was used which was easier and cheaper to get. Just under the eave, where the rainwater almost can't get, straw was braided together with crossed straw bindings. It looked very nice and it provides good ventilation. Nowadays reed is mostly used which is stronger.
Peat turf brick shed house

Schaapskoo​i (sheep pen)
The sheep were just released to graze on the heathland

We looked for the sheep herd and found them away from the village

On the way back towards the hotel, we took another road...
...and look at all those fall leaves on the side walk. 

In the afternoon we drove to Emmen... 
...My cousin Helge has a ladies fashion shop in that town and we had never been there, I'm not a shopper but this time I can tell you that I shopped with the help of Helge and she gave me 20% discount...

Saturday, again beautiful fall weather. Good for a 10 km (6 miles) walk around Anloo.
The oldest church of the province of Drenthe in Anloo
 Everywhere beautiful fall colors.
Then walking through the forest we saw this pinetum. It's an arboretum specializing in growing conifers. This came to a surprise for us as we didn't know this area too well.

Again the fall colors were awesome.
And what about this pretty fungus. We call it a "Vliegenzwam" (Amanita muscaria)
A beautiful majestic Atlas ceder, cedrus Atlantica (Cedrus Libani Glauca)

Droplets of dew
And further we walked.....
...until we saw this hunebed (Neolithic tomb)
Then we passed a grafheuvel ( burial mound)
 Fomitopsis pinicola,  Red-belted Bracket
No idea what type of fungus these are.
Passing through heathland
A rest moment

Then it's departure day. The weather had changed completely and it was very foggy that morning. We drove to Dwingelerveld, a National Park, for a short walk. The world here is covered in a mysterious fog.
Blankets of fog add a layer of mystery and beauty to any scene 
Drentse heideschapen

More fungus 
This map gives you an idea where Drenthe is located.

Thank you for visiting my blog. 
Comments are greatly appreciated.