zaterdag 29 december 2012

X-mas gifts

In our family we don't have a tradition of giving each other X-mas gifts. When I was a child we always celebrated Sinterklaas on the 5th of december with the all family, brothers, sisters and grandmothers, with presents suprises and poems.

Well things in the Netherlands are changed a little bit, and I must admit it's fun to open presents on X-mas morning. Two packages from abroad were watiting under the X-mas tree. One from Kerry (Australia) from the SSCS2012 swap and one from our dear friends in Seattle.

Two special packages. Kerry made me some lovely gifts from wool. I really adore the dog pincushion. How did she know I love dogs ; ).

Marne and Elaine did sent us also lovely gifts, but one gift is very special: nine Sue Bonnet quiltblocks from the 1930s. They were made by Clara Petefish Moore (1918 - 2009), she was a friend of Doris. And Doris was the daughter of Grace, my other special 1930s quilt that I finished in 2011. Clara made the blocks 80 years ago, she used sugar, flour and feed sacks.

Oh I can't wait till the quiltshops are open again, but I have to wait  after New Year. Marina's quiltshop in Zeist got quite a collection of 1930s reproduction fabrics. I really want to make a quilt of it. I know that some quilters say that you shouldn't use them, and keep the blocks the way they are, but I like to finish the block into a real quilt. A good project for 2013.

vrijdag 28 december 2012


Time flies, X-mas is already over and now it's on to New Year. All the X-mas stuff is still hanging around in our house (till the 1th of januar). Come and have a look. The X-mas tree is filled with memories, and the packages from Australia and Seattle were waiting.  (They opened and they contained very special gifts, more about it later).
The old church in the X-mas tree was from my grandmother.

In the hallway you find my Tilda X-mas things I made. In the kitchen hangs my last creation " a reindeer guirlande". The pattern is from Atelier Bep and they were sewed on a tablemat, but I preferred to make a guirlande with them. So I got rid of a few more scraps.
In the dining room you find the X-mas stable/shed, it was made by an friend (who died 14 years ago).
The figures were made by myself.

Then in the living room, you will find Santa Claus, it was the Chookey swap 2010.

The Secret Santa Chookey Swap is my favorite, I join it already several years and it's just part of all the X-mas fun. This year Kerry send me some lovely gifts, pictures will follow, but it has to do something with dogs. For some reason she figured out I'm a dog lover ;  ).

Then there is my X-mas quilt, warm and cozy. It isn't very cold here in the Netherlands, it's mostly rain, rain, rain!!! 
X-mas we spend with my parents. My mother made us a very nice meal.
If you love sprouts (spruitjes), here is the recipe.

Second X-mas day (not common in every part of the world), my brother and sister-in-law came along with their three kids. 

That's fun, unwrapping gifts with grandma and granddad.

One of the traditions is going to the "living" X-mas shed at Joppe. (Last year I missed it, because I was in hospital) but this year it felt good to be back again. It was one thing we did from childhood on with my grandmothers and parents.

Good X-mas memories this year. Just another few days of holiday to go. Back to work on the 2th of januar.

maandag 24 december 2012

Blown away .....

..... at the beach (Kijkduin). Much too much wind, we hadn't expect it. Look at Mies her ears.

woensdag 19 december 2012

The first one is finished .....

.... and there will be following more. I'm just in the mood for nice little projects, and these candle mats are perfect when you're sitting on the sofa and watch a X-mas movie for the 5th time. Here in the Netherlands, it's evey year the same movies on the telly.

You can buy the e-patterns (2 or 3 dollars) here: Primitive stitches.

Just another two days of work. I finished my businesscase Marketing for my study Business Administration/Science yesterday, and today I got the result. Yes!!!!! 9 points (10 is the maximum). Oh I can tell you I'm very happy. Now the holidays really can begin in 1,5 days. Quilting, reading, making walks and just doing nothing.

zondag 16 december 2012

Candle mat

 On the blog from Atelier Bep I found this pattern of a candle mat. Not too complicated, just a nice project for under the X-mas tree, or a rainy sunday, like here in The Hague.

Yesterday Emma, Olivier, Nathan and Lucy came along for a  real dutch activity: gourmetten. We really had a great time together. And so another  week has gone. X-mas holiday is almost there, 4 more days at work to go. Have a good X-mas time.

zondag 9 december 2012

Dorry's X-mas party

It isn't yet X-mas, but it was X-mas all over the weekend. At 9.30 in the morning Dieuwke and I were on our way to pick up our friend Diana. On our way tooooooo .............. Dorry in Tilburg. (One of our favorite places). X-MAS-PARTY!!!!!! Oh I love this time of the year.

We had a really good afternoon. Dorry and the girls (her mum Jose and a friend), made a wonderful lunch, so we could eat and work at our X-mas bird. Quiltgirls in heaven, food and quilting ; )More photos

We couldn't believe that it was already 16.00 (time to leave). But you know what, I forgot to take pictures of Dorry and the girls. Sorry!!! But thank you all for a wonderful afternoon! Hope to be there next year.

The best Christmas gifts are memories.

zaterdag 8 december 2012

X-mas fun at the Winterfair

It really was winterwonderland, some snow left from yesterday and blue skies. Rob, Mies and I drove to the Estate Marienwaerdt (Beesd, Netherlands), we spend a good time with looking around on the X-mas fair and enjoying the beautiful estate park.

There were wood stoves all over the place to get warm.

 Mies thinks that snow is very interesting, it seems that everything smells more in the snow, that must be heaven for dogs. I can tell you she's sleeping all night now. Very tired from all the excitement and new impressions.

 For a moment we thought about cooking outside. Don't you love those kettles, but we weren't sure that it would be good idea to do on our balcony.
More X-mas fun tomorrow at Dorry!!!!

X-mas fun: SSCS 2012

Today my parcel arrived all the way from Australia. It's the annual SSCS 2012 X-mas swap from "Chookey". It's really fun, it's my 4th time I'm joining.

We are only allowed to open the parcel that contains the X-mas ornament. The other parcel has to wait till X-mas morning.

To the maker:  I couldn't read your name on the envelope: thank you very much, the X-mas ornaments are lovely, they will be hanging in my X-mas.
Lucky she wrote me comment, her name is Kerry and this is her website. I hope my parcel will arrive safely in New-Zealand at Cat's house.

donderdag 6 december 2012

Sinterklaas fun .....

.... making suprises and "teasing" poems. Giving gifts, a good drink, cheese fondue, and fantastic company. We really had a good Sinterklaas eve. Mies behaved herself very well, of course she tried to steal the pate from the table. Well if they put it right in front of your nose, that's even for a well-raised dog too much.
Now she has her own angry bird pillow. And her own X-mas quilt. What a happy dog.

 Next year again!! Be sure, we will be there.

woensdag 28 november 2012

Seven nights to go.....

... ..... and then there will be Sinterklaas. Rob and I are having fun with making poems and suprises.

zondag 25 november 2012

Any quilting this week ....?

.... yes of course!

 I made a "dog" quilt for Lucca and Barbara. It will be a gift for the 5th of december when we are celebrating Sinterklaas all together with Willem, Dieuwke and Erik as well. You know, a very dutch tradition, Sinterklaas is riding his horse over the roofs and put gifts for the children in the chimney. Sounds very familiar to Santa Claus ; ).

If you want to read more about this very old dutch tradition, or want some food recipes:

The Dutch celebrate Sinterklaas (the name is a contraction of Sint Nikolaas) on Dec. 5 and 6. The holiday, consisting of St. Nicholas's Eve and St. Nicholas's Day, honors the life of St. Nicholas.

Although St. Nicholas is always shown wearing his bishop's attire, the Dutch tend to see him as a kindly old man, rather than as a Catholic saint. The result is that Sinterklaas is celebrated by Dutch people of all ages and beliefs, without any real religious connotations.

His feast day is observed by exchanging gifts and chocolate letters (of the recipient's initial). It is also customary to make good-natured fun of your loved ones, by way of humorous poetry written by the giver and the infamous 'surprise', which is basically a (homemade) gag gift that hides another present inside.

At Sinterklaas, the Dutch feast on: speculaas (spiced cookies), kruidnoten (mini spiced cookies, also called ginger nuts), taai-taai (aniseed and honey flavored figurines), borstplaat (fondant candies), colorful marzipan, chocolate letters and mulled wine.In Holland, it is more common to give presents on Sinterklaas than at Christmas, which remains a day to spend with family and attend church.

Carrots in your shoes
Dutch children believe that Sinterklaas writes down whether they've been naughty or nice in his red book. They put carrots in their shoes for his horse, hoping St. Nicholas will exchange them for presents if they were good. 

Dinner at granny

Nothing better then a good dinner at Granny. Stew (goulash) with red cabbage, cooked potatoes (something I never cook at home) and home-made apple mouse.

And Granny is going to finish my scarf, well finish is a big work, I bought the wool, but I didn't start it even.
So now I'm sure I can use this winter ; ).

Meeting old friends

Little Quilt made for Miep

For almost 20 years we lived in Almere (close to Amsterdam) before we moved to The Hague. Yesterday Mies and I visited our friends Miep and Diny. It was really good to see them again. It had been a pretty long time, it seems that times flies. Mies behaved herself so well, she was so sweet. She liked to put her head on  the little table before the sofa. Strange dog!

Happy Dog

Our Mies is not a very good photo model, maybe she got too much hair ; ).

But we think she really enjoys live at the moment. Especially when she can sniff and run around without a leash. The Hague Woods (Haagse Bos) is still our favorite place to be, it's so close to our house, just a 5 minute walk, so we don't need to pick the car (which is pretty awfull in The Hague).

zondag 18 november 2012

X-mas Quilt

The dog quilt for Lucca is almost finished, just 50 cm binding to go, that's all, photos will follow next week.

Time for a new project (oke, forget about all the UFO's, that are still waiting).

Yesterday in the "Cozy Country Shop"  my mum and I were looking around and then I saw  a kind of quilt I really liked. Pretty simple, but really cute.

What had they done? They just sew strips of fabrics together. The width of the quilt is about 140/150 cm and the length probably 200 cm. The strips were cut of different kind of fabrics, cotton, corduroy, wool, flannel and even some velvet. The strips had different sizes, for example 10 cm, 20 cm, 40 cm, only the length was about 140/150 cm. I can't wait to make one of my own, and when I was laying in my bed, remembering the day I thought of my "Westfalen" fabrics. Bought in Germany two and half years ago, still not used. And the advantage, the westfalen fabrics are 140cm width of fabric. I also found some matching corduroy in my stack,  maybe I buy a piece of flannel or wool. Applique X-mas trees and mooses?

zondag 11 november 2012

The results of a fun afternoon .....

..... wiith home-made soup, brownies, carrot cake, nice earl grey tea, and a lovely self-bought quiche. What else do we quilting girls need. And Mies (our dog) liked all the girls especially all the knuffles and attention she got.