Saturday, March 28, 2009

March 28 - Jelly Beans!

Just a quick post this morning! I have a hectic weekend and probably won't get any other chance to post today!

I went with another Easter themed postcard. This time; a bunch of jellybeans!
These Easter cards could be cute as clue cards for an egg hunt. Write clues on the back of them, leading them to an egg or to the grand prize in the egg hunt.
If you send out menu cards for dinner, this could be used for that as well!
I'm sure there are other clever ways it could be used in connection with Easter as well but at the moment, my brain is running too fast to slow down long enough to think properly!

Have any ideas on how these Easter postcards could be used?

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I forgot to post last night's dinner! I made homemade chicken strips last night. One of those meals that is really filling, everyone loves and there are seldom any leftovers! :o)
Tonight, I have no idea what we will be eating! Hubby and I are heading out of town today so we will be eating out somewhere along the way. The kids get stuck at home with frozen pizzas! lol
Not really a terrible thing to them! They love them and we will seldom have frozen pizza. Normally I make them myself, so for them, frozen is a treat! (Smart, huh? lol)

Ok, I hate to post and run but I really must! I have several things I need to do before leaving! Hubby just sprang this all on me last night so I didn't get much time to prepare so I am off!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone! I will be back sometime tomorrow so I am not sure when I will be posting the next postcard. Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, March 27, 2009

March 27 - Easter Eggs

Good morning! :o)
I am getting my ducks all in a row today and starting off with posting my blog!

It is a bright, sunny day here today so I am cheerful! It is so wonderful to see the sun! I hope the weather is good by all of you!

I was thinking what kind of a postcard to make today. I needed a break from the flowers and I'm sure you all did as well. I thought, with Easter coming, why not a few postcards that could be sent for that? Today's postcard is of foil covered chocolate eggs. I scanned these last year from a bag of eggs we bought at the candy store. Aren't they beautiful? :o)
The kids are grown now and Easter baskets are a thing of the past but I still enjoy decorating a bit and of course, buying some chocolate to have around for munching!

Here in Holland, it is normal to put up a "tree" for Easter. It is essentially just some willow branches, that may or may not have leaves on them. You stick a few of those in a vase and decorate with little ornaments. I am quite taken with the Easter trees and enjoy setting one up every year.
I have a massive spiral willow in my back yard from branches I got one of the first Easters I was here. After Easter I planted them and it has turned into a beautiful tree! When I planted them, I had no idea they would grow into a willow. I planted 3 branches together! Guess what? I got 3 trees in one spot! lol We cut down 2 of them last year and the other one is growing beautifully! It gives us beautiful shade each year in the back of the garden/backyard.
What can I say? The branches grew roots while it was an Easter tree. I just HAD to plant them! lol

We never have a formal Easter dinner here but I try to get a ham. The hams here are quite small! More like a small rolled rump roast. Some years I would kill to have a good ham shank! I miss having the leftover bone and ham to make split pea soup! Ah well, you learn to make do with what you have! :o) I usually make mashed potatoes and gravy, carrots, Brussels sprouts, dinner rolls, olives and pickles. Pineapple upside down cake for dessert. Nothing much really.
The kids have outgrown the egg hunts so no more getting up early to hide eggs! I do miss it though. I wish I were closer to my grandson so I could hide eggs for him. Maybe one year I will be lucky enough to be home for Easter to do that for him.

What are your Easter traditions? Do you do anything special? Have certain foods?

I have decided to add a 4shared link each day for those who may still want to download from there. For those of you that prefer not to, there is a Mediafire link for you. Take your pick!
Now, without further ado, here is today's postcard:

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Well, I am off to get some more work done and enjoy the sunshine we are getting today!
Thanks for stopping by! Have a wonderful Friday!

March 26 - storks

I know, I am really late in posting again today! *sigh* I start out the day thinking I will do it first thing, and then I find I have work to do. Then the day goes on and I keep forgetting!

Today's postcard is another one of those signs of Spring. I actually took this at the zoo last year! I wish I could have gotten higher above the nest to see if there were any eggs in there or maybe even babies! Ah well....I thought this would make a cute postcard anyway. A little plain perhaps but it would be great for baby announcements! :o)

Link has been removed

Tonight's dinner was sausages and mac N cheese. It was just DD and I tonight as hubby and DS both had to work late. It was tasty though! :o)

It rained all day here and was just plain yucky again! I guess I am glad I couldn't plant yet because the seeds probably would have just rotted in the ground.

I have discovered I just cannot grow parsley inside! It does fabulous in my gardens but in a pot in the house....dead, dead, dead and I don't know why! I give up! I will just stick to it in the gardens and keep pots of all my other herbs inside as well as out!

It looks like it is time to replant the marigold seedlings already. They are getting quite big! Not a bad thing though as it gives me quite a few more smaller pots to plant more marigolds! I use a lot of marigolds in the garden.

The Shasta Daisies aren't coming up very well but I did use old seeds so it was a hit and miss thing anyway. I guess I will have to replant with newer ones.

My 3 pots of lettuce I planted are doing fabulous!!! They are getting so big! All of the other lettuce I planted is still in the seedling stage. I will have a ton of lettuce right from my windowsill before I ever get any in the garden! lol

My oregano isn't growing so well. I have some sprouts in one of the 3 pots I planted and the marjoram, none of them have come up yet. To be fair though, I planted old seeds so it, too, was a hit and miss exercise anyway. I guess I will have to dig out the newer seeds and try again!

The basil seedlings got big enough to put into bigger pots and are doing nicely. I planted some more basil 2 days ago and it's already sprouted!

I keep waiting on starting any veggie seeds because of the cold weather and all the rain. I suppose I will be too late in getting them going and then the weather will turn nice and I will wish I had them ready for planting in the garden! I have bags and bags of seeds plus you will find cups and bags all over my house with various seeds in them that I have taken out of veggies! I have 3 different pepper seeds in cups right in front of me on my desk! lol

Did I tell you I built a new shelf on the windowsill? I ran out of room to put the starters so I grabbed some bricks from the back garden and piled them up on each side of the windowsill. I then laid a board over the top of them! Worked like a charm! I am going to add one more board between the bricks, about midway though. The starters can be on the bottom where they get the warmth from the radiator. When they start sprouting, I can move them up a few inches to the middle shelf. When they get too tall or need bigger pots, then they will move up to the top shelf! Plus, I have some room on the windowsill on either side of the shelf as well. Hubby said he is willing to give up his shelving boards for it since it is only temporary anyway! What a guy! :o)

So, there you have the farm report! :o)

Ok, it is after 2am here so I am going to close and go to bed! *gasp* In bed before 5am??? Unheard of for me lately! lol I am a bit tired again tonight though.

Thanks for stopping by! See you again tomorrow!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

March 25 - The Road Not Taken

Today's postcard, while not the very best in quality, is still one of my favorite photos. This photo reminds me of a poem I read when I was young and have never forgotten:

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
and sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
and looked down one as far as I could
to where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
and having perhaps the better claim
because it was grassy and wanted wear;
though as for that, the passing there
had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
in leaves no feet had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I --
I took the one less travelled by,
and that has made all the difference

What do you think? Does the photo fit the poem?

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I have added a beautiful piece of music from YouTube on the side bar, at the very top, on the right. My daughter played this for me today and I absolutely fell in love with this child's voice let alone the song! I think my daughter said he was 12 in this video. I could be wrong but he is not very old at all! His name is Declan Galbraith and he has the voice of an angel!

It is such a peaceful song and goes so well with today's postcard! Do yourself a favor, click on the player to play the song. Then go to the larger view of today's photo (just click on the photo) and see if you don't feel relaxed! Then, when you are done playing it again about 100 times like I did, :o) let me know what you think in your comments! :o) Isn't it just amazing? Looking at the photo and listening to the music made me feel like I was wandering through those flowers and what a relaxing feeling that was! I felt alone with nature with an angel above singing while I walked.

Dinner tonight - we had Kip Krokant Schnitzel. Tells you alot huh? lol Basically, chicken cutlets with a crispy coating. We also had mashed potatoes with chives and parsley and a blend of veggies (from a can, I admit it!). What did you have tonight?

Mary - I knew you would get the bulbs answer right! lol Being a gardener and in a club, I would be disappointed if you hadn't! :o)

Thank you all for stopping by! Don't forget to listen to the music!! :o)
See you tomorrow!

March 24 - More flowers!

Yes, I am very late! Was a busy day today but I am here! :o)
This will be short and sweet as it is 1am here!

Today's postcard is another flower one from the Keukenhof! With the dreary day we had today, I needed something bright and cheery and this does the trick for me! I hope it's the same for you!

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Dinner tonight: Hubby was sweet and we grabbed Subway and brought it home tonight. Hmmm, maybe he didn't like MY sandwiches last night? lol Actually, he loved them but he likes Subway, has been hungry for it and it sure made my night easier not having to cook or clean up after! What a guy huh? :o)
So, what did you have for dinner tonight?

The answer to yesterday's question about what the white blobs were: tulip bulbs! :o)

Sorry to post and run but it is late and I still have a few things to do!
Thanks for stopping by! See you tomorrow!

Monday, March 23, 2009

March 23 - Happy Birthday Mom!

It's my Mom's birthday today! Happy Birthday Mom!
Not that my Mom reads my blog but I wanted to acknowledge it online just the same! For all I know she does read it and just doesn't tell me! :o)

Today is nasty here! Rainy and gray. I'm glad my MIL told me it was raining where they live. We usually get it about a half hour after them so I ran to the store right away after talking to her. Boy, am I glad I did! :o) It started raining not long after I got home.

Food notes:
I thought I would start putting in here what we are eating for dinner at night. Why? I have no idea! lol Perhaps you can leave a comment about what you are having/had for your dinner as well! It might give us some ideas! Kind of a "dinner meal exchange" of sorts!
Tonight, we are having sub sandwiches. We love the Chicken Teriaki (sp?) sandwiches at Subway but who can afford to eat out nowadays? I found a great sauce at my grocery store for just over an euro a jar. I cut up chicken breasts into small pieces, cook them and then add the sauce. I also add just a bit of brown sugar as we like it just a little sweeter. Add some onions, lettuce, tomato and mozzarella cheese and you have a sub for about 1/3 of the price. I will probably throw in some fries to go with this as well.
What are you having for dinner?

Today's postcard may look strange to some of you. Can anyone tell me what those white things are in the middle of the postcard? I know what they are but do you?
Hint: This photo was taken at the Keukenhof. If you have been following my blog, by now you should know what the Keukenhof is and what they have there! Shout out! What are those white blobs on the postcard? :o)

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Well, it is almost 5pm so I better get busy cutting up that chicken!
Have a wonderful Monday everyone! Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Sunday, March 22 - Lily

Look! I am posting early! lol
I haven't even opened my Facebook yet! :o)

We have another beautiful, sunny day here in Holland! Maybe I will get outside and get something done in the back garden. I do need to dig up roots from the Hedera. Never again will I plant any type of ivy plant. I grew Hedera on the fences, trying to fill in gaps between the slats in the fence. It worked beautifully and looked nice until we decided to take it out. We found it really caused some damage to the fences and when the high winds came along last year, the fencing crumbled. Needless to say, we had to replace all of the fencing on that side of the yard. The problem is, the Hedera roots really dug in and I need to get them out so I can lay my new veggie gardens.
I also have a lot of sand that we threw in for the pool that needs to be shovelled up and dumped somewhere. Where we had the pond, we dumped sand in as well so I have lots of sand to deal with now. The sand might be good for beets and carrots but I doubt many of the other veggies will grow well in it. *sigh* So much to do.

I have another flower postcard for you today. This is a closeup photo of some Lilies at the Keukenhof. I love getting up close and personal when I take photos. This gorgeous Lily looks just like the Lilies I have in my backyard behind the waterfall. While I am not a big fan of Lilies, I do like their bold colors and how they stand so tall and regal. They are an unassuming flower yet really manage to grab your attention! I hope you enjoy today's postcard.

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Well, I must run! Hubby made me breakfast so I need to eat it while it is hot!
Thank you for stopping by! See you tomorrow!

Saturday, March 21

Just a quick post tonight! We just got home from the in-laws not too long ago and I am beat! Going to post this, feed my eggs and go to bed long before 5am I think! :o) Too many late nights are catching up to me now!

Today's postcard is a waterfall, found, where else? The Keukenhof! lol
I know it is not a colorful photo but I really like the simplicity and peacefulness of it. It was zen-like, just sitting and looking at this fountain. Very relaxing and just kind of tucked away into some trees. I hope you like it!

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I am off to feed my eggs and hit the sack!
Have a wonderful night everyone! Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

March 20 - Welcome Spring!

I know! I am late again but today it's not because I was on Facebook! lol
Hubby got off early from work and asked me if I wanted to go shopping. Well now, I am a female and enjoy the occasional shopping spree so how could I say no? lol The funny thing was, I was cleaning, scrubbing the bathroom, doing laundry, really getting things done for a change instead of playing my game! But still, how is a girl to refuse an offer like that from hubby I ask you? :o)
We had a good time, just the two of us; roaming around the center in search of those delightful chocolate Easter eggs. They are like the small, hard shell, Cadbury eggs, I think they are. You know, hard shell on the outside and solid chocolate inside? They are about the size of a dime. Just little bitty things and oh so good! Our candy store has carried them for years but they didn't get them this year! Arrrrgggg So we went in search of them but nobody has them this year! How can that be? That is my favorite Easter candy and I was thrilled to find them here! *sigh* We will probably make a trip into Rotterdam one of these days and see if we can find them there. If not, anybody want to send me some eggs? lol Just kidding!

The day was a bit chilly, just the tiniest bit, but the sun was out so that made it all good! I am glad I am keeping my urge to get things in the ground in check though. Hubby said several days this week, while it was warm in the daytime, in the morning when he left for work, he had to scrape the frost off of his windows. Not a good thing for tender veggies!
I guess I will just have to start some more seeds in the house and be patient! Not one of my stronger points!

Today is officially Spring! It sure felt like it would never get here this year, didn't it?
When we were out today, we saw all of the daffodils and crocuses in bloom. They line the streets with them here and it is so pretty to drive along and see it! I will have to go out and take some photos! I have some from several years ago but my photos were smaller then so they wouldn't make for nice postcards.
Because it is Spring, I thought I would send you another flower postcard. Again, these are from the Keukenhof! You will be seeing a lot more photos from there since I have a ton!
My mom loves Gerbera daisies so I snapped these photos especially for her. I think these are double Gerberas, are they not, Mary? I just think they are gorgeous no matter what they are called!
Here is today's postcard:

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I did check in to Facebook earlier tonight and I was gifted with 13 fabulous warehouse eggs. It made me cry! It was such a wonderful gift and sure saves me a lot of time! Warehouse eggs are bought with "shells". You earn 1 "shell" for every egg you find. The cheapest egg is 100 shells and the most expensive one is 1000 shells. It can take some time to build up enough shells to buy all the eggs you want so being given so many warehouse eggs was an amazing gift! Thank you Jeff! :o)

Judy asked where to find the game. I am not sure! lol It is probably found under applications and it is called Hatchlings. I can send you an invite if you are on my friends list! You can add me if you'd like! I will delete this part tomorrow. (Denise Hultman van Riet) Let me know it is you and I will send an invite to the game! If anyone else would like to join, send me a message on Facebook!

Ok, I am off to find some eggs! :o) Thank you all for stopping by and for leaving all of your wonderful comments, yet again! See you again tomorrow!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

March 19 - Tulips

Do I dare say, "Oops, I did it again"! lol
I really thought I posted this earlier this morning! I actually made myself get dressed, make the bed, empty the dishwasher, throw in a load of clothes and actually get some coffee before going on Facebook! I even made it to the store today, had some face time with my neighbor and made gyros for dinner! I thought I did this as well but I guess I meant to, thought I did, but really didn't! I'm sorry? :o)

Before getting to the postcard, I would like to comment on your comments!

Becky - I am so glad you were able to grab the postcards! I leave them up for a week before I remove the links just in case people miss them. If you still miss them, just leave me a comment and let me know what day you are missing. I don't keep the zips but I do have all of the postcards!

MaryE - Holland really is so beautiful and there is no better time to see it than in the Spring. Everything is in bloom then and while it is still a bit chilly and a lot rainy some years, it is so worth it!
You are doing great in Hatchlings! :o) Don't forget to feed your pets every day! They are kind of like neo pets. They need love and care to survive. If they starve too much, they will fly away from you!

Aleah'sMommy - Thank you so much for the great comments! I'm glad you were able to grab the ones you missed, like Becky! My internet has been going in and out the last few days as well. It is seriously cutting into my Hatchlings hunting! lol
Great ideas for the funny face postcard! Especially the funny friend!

Judy - Thank you for your sweet comments on the postcards!
Be warned, if you start with Hatchlings, be prepared to get addicted! lol You can add me to your friends list (Denise Hultman van Riet) (I will delete this tomorrow!) It's a wonderful game but oh so addicting!

Sherry - Sherry, Sherry, my dear sweet Sherry! Cut down on my Facebook time??? Are you crazy?? lol Hey, the house is clean, the family is fed, clothes are clean, enough said! :o) Besides, I don't go back to QC until next month so I am enjoying my vacation! Speaking of which, when are you coming back???
As for posting the postcards on FB, I would rather not. My blog is small and only a handful of people get the cards which is fine by me. I don't worry about theft that way. I am not a professional photographer but even so, these are MY photos and I definitely don't want someone to snag them and claim them as theirs. FB has too many people plus, if they change their rules again, what you put in your account could become their property and I certainly don't want that! :o)
PS Hatchlings doesn't end! lol This game ends April 12 but then the new one starts! lol

Corrine in WA - You are so very welcome and huggs back to you!

Now, that feels better, doesn't it? I like to comment on your comments. It makes it feel nicer that way, more like friends interacting. I like it when you all leave comments even if just to say hi! It just makes everything more personal, I think. Not just some sterile blog where you grab a link and run, don't you agree?

Ok, now for the postcard! Another floral postcard of some flowers at The Keukenhof. It opened today and is only open until May 21. I am hoping I can convince hubby to take me again! It's always so beautiful and even though it is tulips, daffodils, hyacinth, etc., year after year, the way they do it is always different! Plus, of course, they have other displays as well. Next to the Efteling, it is probably my favorite place in Holland!
I think these cheery, bright tulips are just the thing for the last day of winter, don't you think? Yes, tomorrow is officially Spring!!!!!!!!!
Here is today's postcard:

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I have certainly enjoyed your visits. I look forward to seeing you again tomorrow!
Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

March 18 - pipe organs

Surprise! :o)

Good morning!
I thought I would set up today's post BEFORE checking my Facebook account today! lol I think while I am at it, I should probably unload the dishwasher, vacuum, mop, do some laundry and iron some work shirts for hubby as well before I open that page! That's probably the only way they will get done!

It looks like another sunny day here! My garden should be rototilled any day now with all of this nice weather! Maybe by this weekend, I can actually get some peas in the ground! I might even be able to get the potatoes and onion sets in if it's dry enough.

Last year was my first year growing potatoes and they were a definite success! I just planted a small patch of them last year since I had never grown them before and even though it was small, we still ate potatoes out of the garden through November. That was even with giving some away! This year I am tripling the number I am planting and if all goes well again, then next year I will plant even more!
LOL I know tripling sounds like a lot but you have to know that last year, I planted 30. This year I have 90 of them ready to go. What do they call seed potatoes in English? Here they call them potardappelen.
Now of course, this means I will have to forego my Hatchlings game! lol That's ok though. I LOVE gardening so it's not like I am giving up the game to do something I don't want to do! :o)

Enough about all of that! On to the postcard!
Today's postcard is of a pipe organ from the Efteling. (Imagine that! More photos from the Efteling! lol) This organ is in the Laaf area. Laafs are little knome like beings. They are just the cutest little things! Laafland is probably my favorite area in the Efteling.
Anyway, it's not a real pipe organ, as you can see! It does have music coming out of it but not organ music.
Here in Holland, you see a lot of these pipe organs on wheels, playing in the streets. We have one in the center, the downtown area. They are there every Saturday for your shopping pleasure. I just love the music and it puts a big grin on my face every time I hear it.
Here is the Laaf pipe organ:

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Well, I guess that's all for today! I better get some housework done. I feel the urge to go on Facebook coming on and the minute I do, the rest of the day is gone!

Have a fabulous day everyone! I wish for you warmth and sunshine wherever you are!
Thanks for stopping by!

Happy St Patty's Day!

Hello. My name is Denise and I am a Facebook Hatchlings addict! :o)
I swear this game is going to be the death of me yet! Seriously, if you are on Facebook, stay away from Hatchlings! lol It is a fabulous game and so much fun but it's so addicting!!! That and the word hunt. Oh my.

So, did you all have a nice St Patty's Day?
It was warm and sunny here again so the day was perfect! Well, almost anyway! I didn't get my corned beef brisket since I have yet to find that here in Holland. My mom had sent me some corned beef hash in the last box she sent over so we had that mixed with hash browned potatoes and cabbage. I just threw it all together in a pot after it was all cooked. It was pretty good but still not a brisket! *sigh*
I also made a mint brownie dessert that was so good! A bit sweet but so tasty! The bottom layer is brownie, then a thick layer of green, mint flavored, powdered sugar frosting and then a layer of chocolate over that! Oh my was it sweet! I found the recipe on the internet last week and knew I just had to make it today! Everyone loved it.

Well, today I needed something green for the postcard! I couldn't find anything "green" but I did find a photo with a peacock that had green in him! Another photo from the Efteling. The peacocks just wander about and don't seem too bothered by all the people! This one was busy grooming himself but stopped long enough to give me the evil eye for interrupting him for something as silly as a photo! Ah, the life of a photographer huh? lol
Here is today's postcard:

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Well, nothing else to write plus I should get to bed! It is almost 3am again!

Happy St Patty's Day everyone! Thanks for stopping by and see you again tomorrow!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Monday, Monday.....

I am late, I know! I am absolutely addicted to the Hatchlings game on Facebook! I was up until 4am last night playing and then again today, all I did was play on Facebook! With all of the hunts and games, I spend way too much time on there! I am so sorry!

I will just get right to today's postcard! This is just one of the things at the Efteling. I just think this close up face is funny. I am not exactly sure what kind of a reason this would be sent to someone but I am sure, with time, I could think of one! lol Perhaps my faithful visitors can come up with a few good ones??? :o)
Anyway, here is today's postcard:

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Have a wonderful Monday! Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Sunday - March 15

Happy Sunday everyone! I hope it has been a good one for you!
We got some more sun here today and this evening, I was outside after dark and the sky was so clear you could see the stars! That doesn't happen very often where we live. It was so nice to just sit and look at them! :o)

Yesterday it did rain like the weatherman said it would but the sun never really came back out like he said! Well, it did show up just in time to go down, literally!

We ran out to the big garden yesterday to get the wheel barrow so a neighbor could borrow it. I was so happy to see the garden has been plowed finally!!! Yea!!! Now we just need some more good weather so it can be rototilled since it is just big chunks right now. I am really getting antsy now but with the garden plowed, it is much closer to being time to plant! :o)

The plants I started inside are growing great! I have 15 lettuce growing like crazy. I planted 3 different kinds; Buttercrunch, Iceberg and Lollo Bionda. I have several types of leaf lettuce seeds as well but those I will just seed directly in the garden.
I am experimenting a bit with some of the lettuce. I took 3 big containers, not huge ones but about 6" deep and probably the same across, and planted some Buttercrunch in them. So far, they are doing fabulous! I wonder if I will be able to grow them to adulthood (lol) in those containers. We will see! I am trying to grow as much as possible in containers here at the house to see how much I can actually get out of this small garden. Between the containers and the square foot gardening, if I can get enough veggies to put up for the winter then I may give up the big garden. I love the big garden but because it is elsewhere, it can be a pain to get there and hubby hates going to the garden! I have really been trying to work out what to plant in the spring and what to plant when the spring crops are done. I am a big fan and believer of companion planting so with a smaller area, I have to take those things into consideration as well.
I am also thinking about if I keep the big garden and use it for the potatoes, pumpkins, cucumbers, melons, corn, onions etc.; all the big crops, then I can use my back garden here for the smaller crops like carrots, beets, etc and of course, my tomatoes and peppers. Unless you have a greenhouse at the big garden (which I don't), it's almost impossible to grow tomatoes and peppers because it is so dry and windy out there. Like I said, we are out in the middle of farm land with nothing around us.
Anyway, so much to think about for the gardens and now it is almost time to start planting!!! :o)
I will try to take photos this year and keep you all updated as it grows!

Ok, enough about the weather and the gardens! Time for today's postcard! By now, you probably know I love birds! It doesn't matter what kind, I love them all! Well, today's postcard is of a bird, a seagull, that I caught on camera while at the Efteling last year. He posed so nicely for me and I got a gazillion photos of him and his feathered friends! This is just one of those photos.

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Well, I am running late and it is already after midnight here so I better close for now and carry my butt to bed! Thank you for stopping by! See you again tomorrow!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

March 14 - Cake anyone?

Happy Saturday!!!
It's another sunny day here although my daughter tells me she heard it was going to rain today but that the sun was supposed to come back out again after. I can live with that! Just keep that sun coming!

A friend and I were talking about the weather here in Holland. She is a transplant, like I am, but she comes from Canada. We were wondering how it is that more Dutch people don't have depression, especially in the winter months. Holland is so gray and dreary all winter long. There is no snow to reflect what little light you do have. We think they must put an anti-depressant right into the water in the winter. lol How else do you survive the long, gray days?
Seriously though, winters can be long here with all the gray days even if the temperature is mild for the most part.
Do you or someone you know suffer from winter depression?

Ok, well yesterday, I believe I said I would have cake for those of you who stop by to visit. Well, here it is! :o) Another photo from our weekend getaway last year. I just love the baked goods here in Holland. They are always so fancy and oh so good! It amazes me that Dutch people are so dang skinny (like reeds!) when they have so many wonderful, tasty baked goods to choose from. Eating a sweet at about 8pm is pretty normal here. Now mind you, they don't eat sweets like this every night! lol Coffee and a treat at 8pm though is normal. (Same thing at 10 or 10:30am. Break time for coffee and a snack)
The bakeries and stores are just loaded with goodies to tempt you and it is so hard to choose just one! If you ever come to Holland, be sure to try the baked goods. They are so worth the extra pound or two!

I thought today's postcard would be cute as an invite to a party or a cup of coffee and a chat. Are you hungry yet? :o) I am so I think I will go get some breakfast! Enjoy the postcard!

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Thanks for stopping by! Have a wonderful Saturday!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Friday the 13th!

Well, here it is, Friday, the 13th! I don't know about you but Friday the 13th has always been a rather lucky day for me rather than unlucky! Point in fact: today is sunny and warm! lol It's a beautiful day outside and I am wondering what I am doing here inside, on the computer! As soon as I post this, I am out of here! :o)

Wikipedia says that here in Holland, according to a study done in 2008, "fewer accidents and reports of fire and theft occur when the 13th of the month falls on a Friday than on other Fridays, because people are preventatively more careful or just stay home." It goes on to say that driving is safer on Friday the 13th, at least here in Holland. It's funny really, because I consider Holland to be a pretty safe place for driving! Granted, there are always traffic jams! I swear there are more cars than people sometimes! However, you just don't see the pile-ups on the roads like you do in the States. They do have them on occasion, don't get me wrong, but you just don't see a lot of accidents on the highways here. When my Dad was here last year he even commented on how considerate drivers were here.
I think not being allowed to even take driving lessons until you are 18 makes a big difference! They take private lessons and then go for their exam and I swear, no one passes on the first try! (I think this is a way to get more money though as opposed to doing things wrong! JMHO!)
I honestly feel kids of 16 are just too young for that much responsibility! They are talking about lowering the age for driving here and I pray they don't do it! In their quest to be just like the States, they don't take into consideration the bad that comes with all the good. I like Holland just like it is and if I wanted to live in a country just like the States, I would have stayed there to begin with! Now before you think I am down on the States, I'm not! I am proud to be an American! I just feel America has lost her way in so many things and it is nice to be in a country where I have some peace of mind. There is good and bad everywhere though.

So, is Friday the 13th a good or bad day for you? Sound off! (PS If this day is bad for you, be warned! We get another one in November!)

Today, since it is so beautiful outside, I decided on another flower postcard. I believe these are a Rudbeckia, are they not? We have some gardeners here so maybe they can tell me for sure!
I snapped this photo while in Urk, a little fishing village we stopped in while on a weekend getaway last year. I just thought they were pretty and they made me smile to see them so I took a photo of them!

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Well, I hope today is sunny and warm for you, wherever you are! Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by! I will try to have some cake for you next time you come! :o)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

March 12 - goats & statues

Hello! Sorry I didn't post yesterday. I couldn't get my files to load to Mediafire for some reason. It could have been our internet but I am not sure what the reason was. I do have 2 files for you today though!

First, I have a goat! lol This photo just makes me think he should be talking somehow. Perhaps you can ad a caption or a talk bubble with something cute in it?
He just posed for me so nicely, how could I refuse to take his picture? :o)

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Next, I have some statues by the water. I got this photo while on a boat trip. These little guys were on the water's edge, entertaining the birds. I just thought it was a cute scene and thought it would make for a different postcard. (Looking at the preview, maybe I should have left the texture off?)

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MaryE - Thanks so much for finding out the English name for the ijsbloemen! (Ice Flower) How original, huh? lol No matter what they are called, they are beautiful and I love looking at them every year in my garden!

Aleah'sMommy - I am so happy to know you are enjoying the postcards! I hope your family and friends you send them to enjoy them as well!
I understand your grandma's antsiness! It is so hard for gardeners when spring is so close and still so far! I look forward to seeing your photos!

Mary - creating puzzles out of the postcards is fine since it is for your own personal use! What a great idea! I bet that is a lot of fun! Thank you for telling me how you use the postcards! What a great idea!

One of my readers, Mary, creates puzzles out of the postcards. She does them on her computer but you could also print out the puzzle pieces, cut them out and send them to someone! :o) They get a postcard and a puzzle in one! Perhaps fashion a card, with the postcard on the front and the puzzle pieces inside so they can see what they will be putting together!

Does anyone else do anything with the postcards besides send them to others? Leave me a comment on how you use them! I would love to hear how the postcards are being used in other ways.

Well, it's another gray and wet day here in Holland! Well, not so wet at the moment but it did rain in the night again. Back to the starting line for the dry days before plowing! lol

I have been eyeing my backyard and trying to figure out what to do with it. We have a small backyard as most people do in Holland. I used to have a pond and waterfall in the garden but I couldn't keep the green slime out no matter how hard I tried so I dug up the pond. The waterfall is still sitting there and I am debating on whether or not to put in a small pond again under the waterfall. I also want to put in plants again. 2 years ago we bought a pool and it took up just about the whole yard. I gutted the gardens, added a bunch of sand for under the pool and then we got a freezing cold summer! The kids swam maybe 3 times all summer! Last summer we didn't bother putting it up again and before winter set in, hubby took the pool to the dump. Now I have a garden full of sand that needs to be dug up, new dirt added and then plants again but which ones! lol
I would like to create some of the square foot gardens back there since it is right outside the back door. If I can't make it to the big garden one day, at least I can putter around in my back garden. I also want flowers and bushes in the garden again though. It used to be so pretty back there and I want it to be that way again. It's just so hard to decide what to do with it! I stare out at the garden, seeing different things in it and then sketching it all for future reference. I want to do too many things in too small of a space though I think! lol Ah well, I have some time yet! I will just keep staring, sketching and dreaming, I guess!

Well, I guess that is all for today! I should probably get busy!
Thanks for stopping by! It was so nice to see you again!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

March 10 - garden

Well, so much for getting the garden plowed anytime soon! Today is gray and rainy! That means at least another week! It has to be dry for a week straight before they can plow! *sigh* Oh the joy of living in Holland! lol
Seriously, I lived in Washington State, out on Whidbey Island and I don't remember getting as much rain as we get here! Even my neighbor, who is from England, says they didn't get as much rain there as what we get here! Ah well, I do love how green Holland is with all of the beautiful flowers, trees, bushes, etc. I guess without the rain, we wouldn't have that, right?

Speaking of beautiful flowers, etc., today's postcard is a photo of a beautiful garden I spotted on one of our many trips. I just love the wrought iron table and chairs against the greens. I think it looks so pretty and thought it would make a pretty postcard. I hope you do, too! Here is what today's postcard looks like:

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Well, it is raining so no outside work today. I already have my house cleaned, mopped, dusted, etc. so the rest of the day is mine and it is only 11:30! I am stuck at home though as I am waiting for the repairman to come and fix our dishwasher, yet again! This is like the 6th call now. I sure wish they had the lemon law here because this dishwasher is definitely a sour one! I wish I could afford to buy a new one but like everyone else, money is tight and to be honest, this dishwasher is only 2 years old! Oh well, they come and fix it, over and over and it is still under warranty, thank goodness!

I have a couple of kits I have been playing with for quite some time. Maybe I will work on them for a bit. I really should actually get them done and in the store! I know I said I was retiring but I found I was just in a serious funk with designing. I just needed a break, I guess. Maybe one of these days, I will actually finish these kits!

Well, I guess I am off to see what I can do!
Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful day!

Monday, March 9, 2009

March 9 - More Ijsbloemen

Hello everyone!
Thank you so much for the wonderful comments and the welcome back! :o) It is so nice to see you all again!

I have another photo of the Ijsbloemen for you today. In this postcard, you see a bit more of the waxy leaves.
MaryE, you had said they are like Gerberas and while they look a bit like them, they are definitely not Gerberas! These flowers grow very low to the ground and are about 2", maybe 3" across. The roots are quite shallow and can be a pain transplanting them because of it. The leaves are thick and waxy and almost look like they have beads of water or ice crystals on them all the time. The colors of the flowers are very vibrant and the flowers only open when it is sunny and close up when the sun is gone. They last pretty much all summer long.

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I spent the day cleaning or planting! Nothing very exciting!
I have quite a few seeds started in the house for my gardens. As some of you know, I have a garden in a town not too far from where I live. 300 sq. meters of pure dirt. lol I have a small shed on the land, a couple of water barrels and nothing else! We are out in the middle of farm land, no running water or power. I use a generator and pump in the canal for my water and if I need power, for a tool usually, then the generator is used.
I start a lot of my seeds inside every year. So far I have 3 different kinds of lettuce, cabbage, cauliflower, beets, basil, parsley, marjoram, oregano and some flowers (Shasta Daisy and Marigolds) started. Everything has already popped up and is growing good! Too good, I am afraid! My field hasn't been plowed yet because we can't seem to get any decent, dry weather! It didn't get plowed in the fall either since it got so cold here so early. Usually the fields are plowed in Nov/Dec but it froze by then so it never got done! Now we are having to wait because it keeps raining day after day. I am getting quite antsy to get my plants and seeds in the ground! Just another week and it's St. Patty's Day and the peas should be going in! I am keeping my fingers crossed the plowing gets done by then! I have so many more seeds that need to get planted soon but my windowsill is full!

I am going to try a bit of square foot gardening this year. Normally, I plant in rows as most do in fields. I am intrigued though by the ease of the square foot method and the amount of food in such a small amount of space. I am not sure if I am going to actually raise the gardens though and create individual beds that are up about 4".
I bought some weed cloth and am thinking about just laying it on the ground and then planting flat like that within the foot squares. We will see! I design my gardens every year and always end up with something different than what I planned! lol

Does anyone else garden? Have you tired the square foot gardening and did it work for you?
Have you started seeds in the house yet or are you in a warm place where your garden is already started? Shout out and let me hear! :o)

Well, that is all for today! Thank you all again for hanging in there while I got things straightened out! It is so good to see you all again! :o)
Have a wonderful Monday!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

March 8 - I'm baaaaaaccccckkkk!

Hello everyone! I bet you thought I forgot all about you, didn't you? Well, I did and didn't! :o)
I was looking at new places to store the files and then was watching to see what others thought of them. I was going to go with but then I read some comments about downloads being slow or cutting out before they were finished. I decided I didn't like that at all! I have been watching the comments about Mediafire and they all seem positive so far so I have loaded a batch of postcards to Mediafire and we will see how it goes!

I have 2 downloads for you. The first is the batch of postcards from February. Out of the 5, there is a church photo, 2 religious statues, 1 mixed postcard of various views from Trier, Germany and one last postcard of a donkey! :o) To save time and space, I won't be loading the previews for these. You will just have to take your chances and delete them if you don't like them, ok?
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The 2nd zip is for Mar 1 - 7. These postcards are all of flowers. We have Fuschia, Impatiens, a Lily, a Passion flower, some spring flowers of which I just can't think of their names right now for the life of me and a flower with a ladybug up close and personal! Again, I won't add the previews to save us all time and downloading.
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Then, lastly, I have today's postcard! This one you can see! :o)

I am not sure what these are called in English as I had never seen these flowers until I moved to Holland. Here, we call them ijsbloemen. (ice blue min). These little sweeties are one of my favorites! Every year I look forward to them finally coming out for sale! They are so sweet and so beautiful! The thing is, they only bloom when it's sunny but man oh man, are they gorgeous when they do! If you find these by you, grab some, plant them in a sunny location and watch them all summer long! They are so worth the time, money and effort! I hope you like them!
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I do believe that catches us up to today! :o)
If you have any problems downloading the files, please let me know here in the comment section! I am not too familiar yet with Mediafire so I don't even know if you can leave comments there!
Ok, that should about do it! Thanks for hanging in there! I appreciate it and am so happy to see you back! Have a wonderful Sunday everyone!