New York Part 4


And of course there were the museums! We made a list of museums we wanted to visit and tried to prioritize…have to go back to New York!

Guggenheim is a beautiful building. To my disappointment the Kandinsky floor was closed to the public. The rest of the museum was dedicated to an exhibition by two very silly Switzers ..we will say no more about it.

But yes the Metropolitan is the BEST museum in the world!!! I could go there every week! The building is beautiful, the collection breath taking. We planned our must see floors ahead and enjoyed Chagall, Kandinsky, Calder, Miro and many more!! And very clever , the museum has set out a walk for one-day-visitors so you can have an impression of the collection without going crazy.




And at the American Museum of Natural History, a lifelong wish of mine came to happen in seeing the MOST beautiful dioramas in the world. Those of you who follow my blog a little longer know of my passion for dioramas.


DSC_0496-2These can be over a 100 year old and come from an era without TV, Film, color photos and traveling was a thing for the happy few. The marvel and wonders they must have caused. Mr. Walker does not share my passion but he admitted that it was pretty amazing.




I was so happy.

Love and Liefs, Johanna


New York, New York! Part One


Mr. Walker and I went for six blissful days to the Big Apple.
First time for the both of us. And of course, I want to share snapshots from the family album.


Man, what a fun city that is and so much cleaner as I expected ( spoken as a true cleanliness obsessed Dutch girl)

It was the biggest city I ever visited and I think I can easily spent a whole month there and still find things to see and do.

We walked over 70 mile, because to our opinion cities are best experienced when walking and New York is wonderful to walk, to stroll or as my friend Jane Austen would say, “promenade”.


Wonderful museums, delicious foods everywhere , weird streets where the sun never touches the pavement and of course we had the loveliest of spring weather.

It is impossible the show and tell all but for a few days I will post about our trip and I hope you will enjoy it!

Meneer Walker en ik zijn 6 dagen in New York City geweest en man wat hadden we t daar gezellig!! Zoveel te doen en te zien, echt genieten. t weer was prachtig en we hebben in 6 dagen een slordige 120km gelopen…steden zijn t best te voet te bewonderen!
De komende paar dagen meer kiekjes uit t familie album en ik hoop dat jullie t leuk vinden.

Love en Liefs, Johanna

Lately: Apologies, Taking a Break and Happy Easter!!!


Dear blog friends! Myohmyohmy, life is unusual busy here at the Walker residence. Kitchen redecoration, several travels, a garden that needs full devotion in Spring…most of it fun. However, my pace of life is usually very slow so when things speed up, I have a hard time moving along.

I have neglected you all terribly. So sorry about that.



Even too busy to do much drawing but I did make these two birthday cards for two veryveryvery special people.

So I have decided to take a break from blogging! I am going to miss you all terribly.

I wish you all Happy Easter and I hope we can all enjoy good spring weather.

Een ongebruikelijke drukke bedoening hier in Huize Walker! Keuken wordt eens opgeknapt, de tuin heeft alle aandacht natuurlijk nodig, er wordt gereisd ook…ohohoh, ik heb mijn blogvrienden verwaarloosd!!! Dus ik heb de knoop doorgehakt en neem eens even een pauze van bloggen!

Ik wens iedereen fijn Paasdagen toe en een heerlijke lente!

Love and Liefs,

Winter Time…Tea Time!!


tea cup001Really, a bit of a nonsense title…any time , any day (or night) I can drink tea. And yes yes…hot chocolate is nice too for the winter or a good toddy, right? To keep the cold of , I mean ;o)
Anyhue, sometimes it is just plain fun to make a simple drawing of something close to ones heart..a good cuppa!
Simple things can represent so much: an old blanket that reminds you of your childhood, hot apple pie of Grandma , the smell of a home cooked breakfast brings me back to campsites when the Walker Boys were little lads…

And tea!!  It symbolizes relaxing coziness, connected to reading, knitting, lovely get to togethers. The ritual of making that cup, choosing the right tea, pot and cup. And I have indeed way too many pretty containers with the right teas for the right moments.

This brand is very good and it is sold here in Cincinnati in the daintiest tea shop ever.

But when it comes to the best tea ever: I can, as a self appointed tea connoisseur, state that this tea is the best there is. Just a strong cup with a dollop of milk…the world is perfect again from the first sip onwards. (And no, this blog is not sponsored…though I will reconsider for free amounts of Trader Joe’s Irish Breakfast Tea ;o))

tea time in winter001
Having lots of fun with this drawing, also about tea and winter and coziness.

Ach wat is er nu fijner op een koude winterse dag dan even weg te mijmeren over thee..en gewoon even zo’n gezellig kopje te tekenen en te werken aan een die wat gecompliceerder is. En aan de hoeveelheid trommeltjes kan je wel zien dat ik een heuse thee connaisseur ben ;o)

Love and Liefs, Johanna


Back Again And Three Quotes It Is!

Waiting for Spring002

Well…long time no posts, I’d say. Time for me to start again. Amazingly 2016 is already almost two weeks old!!! Man, I had a great time. The highlight was of course traveling to Toronto, to see the Walker Boys and we all had a great time together. Did not bring the camera this time so no new pics there. I am using some older images of snowy weather. We have some decent snow here finally.

Anyhue, Universe Sketcher tagged me for the Three Quote Challenge. Now I have done this before but since The Sketcher has such a marvelous blog that spreads so much artistic knowledge and inspiration in the most creative way, I was honored by his request…I am all to happy to oblige and start my blogging year with three quotes that mean a lot me and I hope will inspire you too.


And now we welcome the new year. Full of things that have never been.
-Rainer Maria Rilke
I love welcoming a New Year, making plans, looking a little critical at last year and on what to improve on. My New Year resolutions will not differ much from last year’s…stay in the here and now, being kind to Mother Earth and her inhabitants, keep on developing creative skills.


Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.
-Oprah Winfrey

And I will have to develop some discipline. I have too many projects that are not finished..not my style!!! And I need some discipline in using my sketchbook (love it more and more…) and yes…physical excersise!! Thou shall not stay fit by hiking alone!! Swimming and rowing have been added to keep up strength and general good health. ( and I will do my best not to whine about it ;0))

Everything has been done before…but not by me!

I know, I know, I have said so many time before: but this is my absolute life’s motto, applicable to all areas of life and it gives me great joy and motivation every time I think about this!


As always when I am challenged…I do not tag other bloggers but I would LOVE to see some volunteers!!

Love and Liefs, Johanna

Ps Ik was een tijd weg maar nu weer terug hoor. T hoogtepunt van mijn afwezigheid was natuurlijk t bezoek aan de Walker Boys in Toronto. Nu weer aan slag vol nieuwe plannen en goede voornemens: ik  begroet elk Nieuw Jaar altijd met veel enthousiasme! (Ik ben wel verbaasd dat t al bijna 2 weken oud is…) Mijn voornemens zijn eigenlijk altijd t zelfde maar dit jaar voeg ik wat meer discipline en lichamelijke beweging er aan toe…en ik zal mijn best doen er niet over te mopperen;0)
Als je een interessante blog aan je lijst wil toevoegen…kijk naar eens Universe Sketcher!

Lately and Hoppipolla Indeed….


What happened here lately? Well the winter so far is unusual mild. Last week a balmy 22C…that is crazy! However from time to time a few cold nights kick in and the world is so beautiful at sunrise then. 

And of course busy times with getting ready for the festive Season and entertaining a few lovely parties. Charley made it clear what her opinion was on that…


And I have been also doing a lot of reading. Somehow, reading and Christmas is connected to me, I enjoy it even more in the coziness of December.


My knitting at the moment consists of many projects and none finished. Shame on me!!



But I did knit these sweet premi hats. A project for the Children’s hospital. I try to make something special of every little hat and hope to bring a little smile in worrying times for new parents. (awful photo from cell phone, had to the deliver them to the volunteer group..more will be knit and better photos next time!) 


And I went to this fabulous High Style: Twentieth-Century Masterworks from the Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at the Cincinnati Art museum with a group of like minded fashionistas. It was wonderful and of course I bought the accompanying book and I enjoy it so much!!!


And then I will leave you with a little personal note. A while ago I told you, I had troubles with my neck and without the boring details: I am now allowed to start swimming. A lovely BFF is joining me once a week, while I float on my back in warm water, carefully moving my arms and try to slowly strengthen my muscles. And I must say the first time, my usually positive frame of mind left me the moment I got wet. There I struggled in the water trying to find balance whilst this group of senior ladies were laughing and chatting, doing water aerobics and then this man of at least 110 years of age, jumped in the water and started his laps like an Olympic swimmer.
I sighed and felt older than all of them…oh what silly self pity!!!
So I slapped myself on the fingers, grinned at my lovely supportive friend and sang that song in my head that I was taught at Sunday school when I was a wee lass, about counting your blessings.
That brought back my common sense. So in case you feel too old to be happy today, I share another song with you (‘count your blessings’ was not on YouTube ;o)) Sigur Ros is an Icelandic band and you probably heard of them. Hoppipolla means so much as hopping in puddles. That’s what I plan to do, the rest of my life ;0) ( and please for you knitters out there , look at all the marvelous Icelandic knitwear in this clip)

Love and Liefs, Johanna

A Christmas Joke For Bekki


‘If you see a fat man, who’s jolly and cute, wearing a beard and a red flannel suit;

And if he is chuckling and laughing away, while flying around in a miniature sleigh;

With eight tiny reindeer to pull him along;

Then – let’s face it – Your eggnog’s too strong!!’  (-Author Unknown)


So the lovely Bekki took on a challenge to tell three Christmas jokes on her blog and asked her friends in the blogosphere to join in. Here is to you Bekki!!

Love and Liefs, Johanna


About Christmas And A Few Of My Favorite Things


“At Christmas everybody invites their friends and thinks little of even the worst weather.”  Jane Austen, Emma

And my dear friend Jane is so right. What is not to love about Christmas, about the Holidays! Celebrating and being grateful for love, hope, new life and old friends.

Of course, I have not been in the shops anymore since last November;0) Cannot find much Christmas spirit there to be honest!


And yes, yes, I do love the decorations too…Kitsch and all!! My vintage Christmas music all through the house (poor Mr. Walker…)

DSC_9785And talking about friends…this delightful chalk ware dog from the thirties was a present form my lovely friend from The Netherlands, who visited me not so long ago. ( and I moped for the longest time after she left again…) She knows me well, I was over the moon with it. It looks so much like the first dog, Mr Walker and I had together , named Saar. I pat it on the head every morning and think happily of my wonderful friend and that fabulous Saar!

DSC_5324And if you want to know how to make these lovely little dioramas yourself, here is the link to my previous blog.

DSC_5306Ach wat weer verrukkelijk knus met al die Kerstspulletjes overal!! En die leuke hond was een cadeautje van mijn lieve vriendin die hier onlangs was. T lijkt precies op onze eerste hond, Saar. Dus elke morgen krijgt ze een aai over de bol en ik denk blij aan mijn vriendin en aan Saar. En als je ook van die leuke mini diorama’s wilt maken, hier is de link naar mijn vorige blog.


Love and Liefs, Johanna

Wovember: about 100% wool & being green, fashionable and thrifty

Had I not had the flu big time earlier this month, I would have made this post earlier in the month. How I love Wovember: a whole month of celebrating and promoting 100% wool. So much to read, enjoy and learn! And I see the nicest post too everywhere in the blogosphere, especially amongst the knitters and weavers, crocheters.

Well, I am finally joining in. Not about knitting this time. But about 100% wool clothes. I love clothes and I love to have a lot of clothes so I can dress properly for every occasion. I do not necessarily follow the latest fashions but I do like to express myself, my style through my clothes.  And I love good quality clothes, and 100% wool garments make me very happy. When taken care of with TLC, they practically last forever.


To create a wardrobe to my desire is a delightful challenge since I measure a generous 6 foot+  and I prefer skirts and dresses. So I am always on the look out for new additions to my wardrobe because the rule is: if it fits, it’s mine!  “And it will cost a pretty penny! ” you might add. What is a frugal Dutch girl to do? A simple solution: she shops second hand!


When I was a student, living on a tight budget and faced with a diminishing  wardrobe ( oh horror)  I discovered the noble art of second hand shopping. My fellow frugal fashionistas took me by the hand and taught me how to sniff out the quality garments in mint condition at flea markets, thrift stores, consignment stores etc. And I have never stopped doing this.


There is also another component to this. To shop second hand is green! Textile waste is a serious matter. In the US alone a shocking 25 million pound of textile waste is produced each year and only 15% is reused or recycled. And I am so happy with all the women who were bored with their outfits, sold or donated them instead of throwing them out!

So all the clothes you see here, showed by Sally, my faithful 1960 dress doll, are 100% wool, in perfect condition bought second hand. Two tweed skirts, two jumper dresses, a turtle neck , a jacket and a coat, all 100%wool, for about $100.- (including dry cleaning for the jacket , coat and the grey jumper dress) Not bad, right?


The red coat has a funny story to it. It was brought in at a church sale, the tickets were still on it, it was never worn. All the ladies who organized the sale tried it on but alas nobody was a match. “You have to be skinny giantess for this one, does a woman like that exist?” One of them exclaimed. And at exactly that moment I walked in and got everybody laughing…and they sold the coat to me for a ridiculous $3.- ( I did leave a generous extra for their fundraiser..)

The coat is from the 1980’s so you see that indeed 100% wool will last forever. I made new buttons, took the shoulder fillings out and shortened it. Tadaa….

And with all that frugalness I could afford these cute boots and the delightful 100% merino tights that will keep my legs nice and warm when hiking in winter!

Wovember viert en promoot elk jaar de hele maand November alles wat met 100% wol te maken heeft. Ik geniet daar bijzonder van en ook van alle posts die mede bloggers maken. Ik had al eerder ingehaakt als ik maar niet geveld was door een hele gemene griep! Maar goed, hier zijn we dan: al deze kleren zijn 100% wol en gekocht tweedehands voor pietluttige prijzen ;o) En dat is heerlijk voor iemand zoals ik die heel veel van kleren houdt, het is een fantastische manier van hergebruik!

Love and Liefs, Johanna