31 december 2015

New Year's Eve

This is what we traditionally eat today: oliebollen!

'Oliebollen' are a variety of dumpling made by using an ice-scooper or 2 spoons to scoop a certain amount of dough and dropping the dough into a deep fryer filled with hot oil. In this way a sphere-shaped oliebol emerges. They are traditionally eaten on New Year's Eve and at funfairs. In wintertime, they are also sold in the streets at mobile stalls. Oliebollen are usually served with powdered sugar. (from Wikipedia)

I wish you all a wonderful New Year's Eve!

30 december 2015

Kiss and Ride

take and bring

A sign at the entrance of a primary school in Coevorden.

Linking to signs, signs.

29 december 2015

The start of multitasking?

At the exhibition 'Knitting!' in the Fries Museum there are several showcases telling about the history of knitting in the Netherlands. This particular display shows a number of knitted cakes and pies as well as a few magazines from 1934; the left one named 'praten & breien' or 'chatting & knitting'. Well, I am pretty sure 'multitasking' wasn't a word yet in the 1930s but is this how it began for the women in the Netherlands? ;)

28 december 2015

Knitted art

Of the pieces from the exhibition ´Knitting!' in the Fries Museum this is one I liked very much: the knitted artwork created by Zoë Landau Konson, a London based artist and designer.

Doesn't this make you smile? :)

27 december 2015


Encouraged by the Fries Museum in Leeuwarden, nearly 2,500 primary school students started knitting last September. Until November 2015 each of them knitted a piece - or more, if they got hold of it. These so-called 'lappions' (a combination of the word 'lampion' and the Dutch word 'lap' or in English here: 'knitted work') show the marvellous result of their efforts.

Several lappions can be viewed in the Fries Museum now as a part of the current exhibition 'Knitting!'. Go see it if you can, it's fun!

26 december 2015

Ice carvings

A few days ago I showed you an ice sculpture of a Brazilian dancer. This thick wall of ice was actually at the start of our 'journey through a frozen world', as the ice sculpture exhibition in Zwolle is called. The carvings picture symbols from ancient cultures in central and south America.

25 december 2015

It's Christmas!

Let's take a step back from our busy lives today and enjoy time with our loved ones. Best wishes to you!

Photo taken at the Saint & Angels Christmas Fair in Meeden.

24 december 2015

Fijne Kerstdagen!

Merry Christmas!

Imagine there's no countries,
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope some day you'll join us
And the world will be as one

(From:  'Imagine' - John Lennon)

21 december 2015

Christmas #10 - the dinner table

With only a few more days to go until Christmas, another fine decorated corner from the indoor Christmas Fair "Saints and Angels" in Meeden.

20 december 2015

Ice sculpture

View the elegance and extravagance of a Brazilian dancer at the carnaval of Rio de Janeiro sculptured in ice! It´s part of the "Journey Through a Frozen World", as the ice sculpture festival in Zwolle presents itself. With unusual high temperatures outside of +12°C (53.6°F) today, but inside around -10°C (14°F) we felt a touch of Winter ..  ;)

19 december 2015

Christmas #9 - red and white

A display of Santas and a snowman at "Saints and Angels", the annual Christmas Fair of Tuingoed Foltz in Meeden.

Enjoy your weekend!

18 december 2015

Christmas #8 - Groningen Christmas tree

The Grote Markt is the central square in the city of Groningen, with the Martinitoren or St Martin's Tower on the right. Note that 10,000 lights shine in this year's Christmas tree!

Shopping for Christmas in the Herestraat, earlier today.

17 december 2015

Christmas #7 - Bourtange shop

The shops at the market square in Bourtange are always opened during an event like the Christmas Fair. 'De Commanderie' (The Commander's House) on the photo sells all kinds of presents as well as nostalgic Dutch candy.

15 december 2015

"DAVID BOWIE is" in Groningen!

After London, Toronto, São Paulo, Berlin, Chicago, Paris and Melbourne, the next city is Groningen! Since last weekend the Groninger Museum hosts the famous exhibition "David Bowie is"! According to the museum's website (HERE) it is a stimulating multimedia experience that includes more than 300 objects from his personal archives. Bowie kept handwritten lyrics, original costumes, photographs, album (cover) designs and other rare material from the past 50 years.

I have planned a visit in January, as tickets need to be booked online with selection of a date and time. Looking forward to see the exhibition, and I will let you know how it was! :)

14 december 2015

Christmas #5 - reindeer and santas

A gathering of Rudolphs and Santas just begging passers-by to take them home! :)
Photo taken yesterday at the Christmas Fair in Bourtange.

13 december 2015

Christmas #4 - Christmas tree sale

Christmas trees for sale across the library at the Wirdumerdijk in Leeuwarden, yesterday afternoon.
In the background is the Mercuriusfontein (Mercury Fountain), dating from 1923 and created by the German sculpturor Gustav Adolf Bredow. The fountain symbols the prosperity of Leeuwarden and surroundings.

12 december 2015

Christmas #3

A mirror view in the old barn of Tuingoed Foltz hosting the Christmas Fair "Saints and Angels".
Are you getting in a festive mood already?  :)

I am linking to Weekend Reflections.

11 december 2015

9 december 2015


This bronze sculpture pictures Wilhelmina, Queen of the Netherlands from 1890-1948. and great-grandmother of our King Willem-Alexander. The sculpture was created by Dutch sculptor Charlotte van Pallandt (1898-1997). It is located on a beautiful (a bit hidden, surrounded by trees on 3 sides) location in the garden of Museum de Buitenplaats in Eelde. During my visit the sculpture was caught by the sun and I liked the Autumn-coloured background.

Another piece exactly like this can be found in front of Palace Noordeinde in The Hague, where I photographed and posted it on this blog in December 2012, please click HERE to see it.

8 december 2015

Christmas #1 - Saints and Angels Christmas Fair

Every other day (or maybe everyday) for the rest of this month I will be posting photos taken at local Christmas/Winter Fairs. "Saints and Angels" is the annual Christmas Fair at Tuingoed Foltz, a local garden nursery in the small village of Meeden in the province of Groningen. In the weeks prior to Christmas the barn on their property is one big display of candles, lights, season's decorations, luxury chinaware etc. etc. And it's all for sale!

7 december 2015

Stained-glass windows

These are four beautiful stained-glass windows in the old part of the Drents Museum, a building that dates from 1885. The photos I posted yesterday were taken in the new part. On the left "De Bloemen" (The Flowers), and "De Maaltijd" (The Meal) on the right..

.. followed by "De Dronk" (The Drink, or The Toast) and "De Vruchten" (The Fruits).

6 december 2015

'The Glasgow Boys' in the Drents Museum

Another exhibition I enjoyed seeing in the Drents Museum last Friday was "The Glasgow Boys". This British group of some twenty highly diverse painters of roughly the same age were inspired by French impressionists and the Barbizon and Hague School artists. They challenged the establishment and set out across Scotland and France to paint.

Old Willie - The Village Worthy (1886)
Oil on canvas by James Guthrie

(From the comments next to the painting:)
"For years Guthrie endeavoured to show rural life in large paintings depicting several figures. When this failed, he limited himself to a single figure in a landscape. In this work he went one step further, painting a local personality without any surroundings or props. The flat, white background focuses the viewer's attention on the weather-beaten face and direct gaze of the man posing for this portrait.
This painting is Guthrie's last naturalistic work and perhaps his best."

5 december 2015

Ground squirrel

For Saturday´s Critters another photo from our holiday last September: during a hike as well as a picknick in Rocky Mountains National Park (Colorado, USA) we spotted several of these small squirrels. From the park website we learned that there are 10 different species living in the park, and this is a golden-mantled ground squirrel. They're brave, quick, good humoured by the look of it, and so funny to watch!

I'm linking to Saturday's Critters.

4 december 2015

'Corporeal' in the Drents Museum

I visited the Drents Museum in Assen today and enjoyed seeing the exhibition ´Corporeal´ by Laura Eckert. This young sculpturor, born in 1983 in Leipzig Germany, creates life-size sculptures and firm heads using wood and stone.

In Germany Eckert is regarded a huge talent in figurative art. She doesn't use models or sketches, the heads she creates 'just' come to life from the material she is working on.
The heads on these photos are made of wood. I was impressed!

2 december 2015

Mass path

During the Midwinter horn walk of last Sunday we passed the Ten Arloër kerkepad (Ten Arloër mass path), a very old pedestrian track leading from the hamlet Ten Arlo to the church and cemetery of Zuidwolde.  Farmers were not allowed to herd their cattle along this mass path as it had to be accessible at all time for 'four men carrying a fifth'...

1 december 2015

On the road

During our stay in Yellowstone Park a few months ago, we were very surprised to see a couple of motorbikes with Dutch license plates. They were far away from home! 

All their destinations and mileages were written on one of the cases. Isn't that impressive! Unfortunately we did not meet the owners, it would have been nice to hear where they were going from there..

30 november 2015

State Capitol murals

Three pictures taken inside the Utah State Capitol in Salt Lake City, during our holiday in the U.S. last September. It is the house of government for the state of Utah, located on Capitol Hill and overlooking downtown Salt Lake City.
Much of the so-called 'rotunda', floors and stairs are open to the public. Our visit was on a Saturday so it was very quiet inside, but the interior was magnificent!

From 2004 the capitol underwent a major restoration. The project added 2 new buildings to the complex, while restoring many of the capitol's public spaces to their original appearance. There are 5 floors: 4 main floors and a basement. The interior is decorated with many paintings and sculptures depicting Utah's history and heritage.

The building is 123 m (404 feet) long, 73 m (240 feet) wide, and the dome is 76 m (250 feet) high. Very impressive! If you would like to read more about the capitol in Salt Lake City click HERE.

Linking to Monday Mural.

29 november 2015

Midwinter tradition

A still very much alive tradition in the eastern part of the Netherlands is called ´midwinterhoornblazen´ or ´blowing the midwinter horn´, that takes place during the period from Advent through Epiphany on January 6. More than 2,000 years ago people believed that the sound of the horns would scare off evil spirits that came in the darkness, but later it was used to announce the coming of Christ.
On this first Advent Sunday the midwinter horn group from the village of Zuidwolde organised a midwinter horn walk. Along the route of 11 km there were 15 different groups like the one on the photo.
It was wet, it was muddy, but a wonderful tradition to experience!

28 november 2015

Black with some blue

A photo taken in Yellowstone Park (Wyoming, U.S.A.), last September. I'm no expert though: is it a crow or is it a raven, or ...? Because of its bluish black colour and shiny feathers I think it's a raven, but please feel free to correct me if I'm wrong!

I'm linking to Saturday's critters.

26 november 2015

25 november 2015

My cappuccino in... Eelde

View from inside Museum de Buitenplaats in Eelde to the museum café, across one of the ponds...

...where I ended my visit with a cappuccino, served with a piece of home-baked speculaas. Speculaas is a type of spiced shortcrust biscuit, very Dutch and traditionally eaten this time of year, but of course it also tastes delicious the rest of the year!

24 november 2015

More Autumn colours

There is so much to discover in the garden of Museum de Buitenplaats in Eelde, with its many walkways, ponds, and sculptures. Beautiful in all seasons, though I must say nothing beats these Autumn colours. This photo was taken last Friday.

23 november 2015

Bovine Metropolis

Back to September and our holiday in the U.S. for this mural on the Bovine Metropolis Theater in downtown Denver (CO).

The words painted between the upper and lower windows are: DANCE, DRAMA, FILM, MUSIC, POETRY.

It appears to me that the building has been there for some time, and I believe the colours used in the mural, the round shapes and flowers look very Art Nouveau-style.
According to their website, Bovine Metropolis Theater on Champa Street is "the first dedicated school and theater for improvisation in the Rocky Mountain region and teaches the art of accepting the unknown gracefully".

I'm linking to Monday mural.