Oh Snap and No Drawings to Show For Either!!!

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Some memories stay engraved in your mind with date and all: two weeks ago, Friday morning I made the bed and whilst bending over I felt a sharp pain in my back which I had not felt for long time. Snap!!! I could hardly walk, not sit up straight, not lay down. Ouch Ouch ouch…

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The next few days I spent dozing of on muscle relaxers, soaking in the hot tub, scurrying through the house in the most inelegant way. Mr. Walker felt so sorry for me whilst I wailed and moaned  I complained just a little because in the greater scheme of things life was still good right?

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Of course it was, Monday morning I called a chiropractor and he turned out to be a man of action who does not waste time! An hour later he was doing his witchcraft with high tec machinery and skillfully pulling and twisting my arms, legs and spine, which I bravely tried not find scary at all ( in vain)

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So for the past two weeks, I could not sit up right, so no drawing to show for what so ever. I did read plenty of books.


And I did have fun crocheting these pebbles..and they fit so nicely with my green and blue light. Do not watch too closely, crocheting is not really my thing. Raveled it here

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I admired greatly a quiche I baked (yes, that is rather pathetic indeed)

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Knitted one sleeve at my from the top down cardigan.


There was snow and cold, as you can see in the first photos. I had cut a few branches earlier and put them in a vase. If you wait long enough, they will flower and you have a little Spring at home.

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I laughed out loud when the Oldest Walker Boy send this photo all the way from Toronto.We debated wether this was left by a contemptuous dog or was Mr. Snowman trembling in his little snow boots about the upcoming winter storm?

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We have nice Spring weather now…and I am knitting an Easter Hare in happy anticipation. You can already see it’s pretty behind ;o)

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And this is what Charley is suggesting every time, I lay on the floor, doing my re-hab exercises. That is twice a day…

Love and Liefs, Johanna

Lately: Looking for Sunshine, Yoga Knitting, and More…

 

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“It is a serious thing //just to be alive / on this fresh morning / in this broken world.”
― Mary Oliver, Red Bird

The Oldest Walker Boy send me this beautiful photo of the view from his office in Toronto. The sun broke through glorious.

At the moment, sunshine is a bit of a rare commodity here and it almost seems to reflect the state of the world we are in right now. Its hard, very hard not to be weighed down by the daily news I find. I am not going to discuss that, this blog is not about politics and the likes. But I find it difficult to make a post about my important nothings. However I am going to because I need to. We all need to find things that replenish our energy and make us keep going on doing what we believe in..right?

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Here you see a moment of sunshine in my living room…


I tidied up my card rack after Christmas. I love my card rack. It reminds me of lovely people and the beauty of great images. This year’s Christmas cards will not be discarded, they find their way as book markers  and make me smile every time I pick up a book and I read a lot of books!  


I baked scones and drank tea and lit so many candles on days the sun is hiding.


Lots of comfort yoga knitting too! These slippers looked so funny when they came fresh from the needle but they look so dainty when on the foot! Pattern here.


Finished my summer bag! I repurposed one of Mr. Walker nice cotton shirts. He wears them to work and when too old for wearing, I use the nice fabrics for all kinds. In this case, I lined the bag cleverly (if I may say so myself) with the breast pocket part so I have a nice inside pocket without any difficulty. There was a some yarn left for a little pouch for my shopping cards. Raveled it here.

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I picked up the “from the top down cardigan” again. I am not very patient with bigger projects. But we are getting there.

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And I started knitting a blanket!! The perfect project for me. Little squares in a wonderful lace pattern. It’s called the Tulip…ahw, the national flower from The Netherlands ;o) BTW the gorgeous deep purple yarn is a blend of merino and possum, send to me as a present all the way from New Zealand by my friends from Union Homestead…finally found a purpose for the beautiful and to me unusual yarn. Its so soft!!!

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And the ultimate “comfort food”: finding a new perfect fitting dress!!! This is better than pizza and chocolate!! What are the odds of finding my favorite kind of dress in a perfect size: a 100% wool jumper dress, in a second hand store…it was never worn, the label was still on it. I paid $12.- dollar. (And keep in mind, I am a royal 6ft+, finding clothes that fit , is a serious undertaking!) If you heard some yodeling…it was me!!! And I apologize for this selfie…I send it even to my sons that’s how happy I was. They were good natured about it, bless them!!

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Och hemel, t lijkt allemaal wat grijs: ‘t weer, ‘t nieuws. Dat laatste ga ik niet bespreken want deze blog gaat niet over politiek. Maar t maakt me wel somber en ik vind t moeilijk om over gezellige niemendalletjes te babbelen. Toch ik ga t wel doen, want ik heb  iets nodig om vergane energie weer aan te vullen…dat hebben we allemaal nodig toch?
Dus mooie momenten van zonneschijn vanuit t kantoor van mijn oudste zoon en in onze woonkamer. Ik word ook blij van gezellige kaartjes en als ze niet op t rek hangen dan worden t boekenleggers. Heel veel breien en kopjes thee en kaarsjes en lekkere warme scones. En och hemel…als je luid gejodel hoorde…dat was ik in mijn nieuwe jurk. Past perfect , ondanks mijn lengte, en nog een koopje ook. Dat is zelfs een selfie waard!! (Met excuses)

Love and Liefs, Johanna

Lately: Sketch Journal Project and Knitting and More…

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So my plan was to do Fall garden work…but the heat came back and I decided to focus on my other projects after a few very sweaty days.
And many of you commented on my last drawing that they missed the fairies…”its hard to see them and they never stand still” I replied ;o) So I had to give it another try!

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So quite a few my other projects which involved lots of knitting! This is my first sweater knitted from the top down with wonderful Jamieson Shetland yarn I managed to purchase at a wool gathering last year. Finally decided on what to knit with it. Knitting from the top down is actually brilliant: since I am so tall (6ft+) I have to adapt all patterns and now I could put this all on life lines and have a fit to check if it works so far!! I am a very happy girl.


How glorious: blocking a lovely merino and yak yarn shawl on a cool day with the autumnal sun pouring through the lace curtains. I love the smell of of wet wool. I had so many leftovers from this year that I knitted the pattern to match it. Its going to be donated to one of my friends’ Church group, so it will bring comfort to somebody that really needs it.

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More comfort knitting for a good cause are these lovely preemie hats for our Sick Kids Hospital. These are mostly knitted from my leftover silk yarns, so soft. I try to make something special of each little hat.

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My poetry mittens are almost done!!! And I started with some Christmas stockings, another ‘how-to-use-up-leftovers’ project. I will knit a few more and I think they might make nice Christmas presents.

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img_0012And this bear is my faithful friend for as long as I can remember. She was a hand me down from my much older brother and we have been inseparable ever since. Her name is Anne Marie and indeed she has a keen sense of fashion and several outfits to match the seasons. This pretty Fair Isle number is the latest addition. I was going to steek it but with so many WIP’s I just opted for pretty buttons and my dear friend was happy, as always.


A lot of this knitting, I did whilst I was traveling. I was in Toronto with the Walker Boys!!! We had a few lovely walks and a Thanksgiving Picnic in High Park.

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And had to knit this hat in a hurry…because Mr. Walker took me for a wonderful trip to…can you guess where I was?

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More about that tomorrow!

Och hemel, van die tuinplannen kwam niet zo heel veel terecht! De hitte kwam met volle vaart weer terug en na een paar wel erg zweterige dagen besloot ik me te focussen op andere projecten. Toevallig nogal wat breiwerkjes. Shawls en mutsjes voor t goede doel, kerstsokken en zgn poëzie wanten, een vest in wording en dat rode mutsje. Ik heb veel gebreid toen ik bij de Walker Boys was afgelopen week maar dat rode mutsje was voor een leuk onverwacht reisje. Ik vertel morgen meer!

Love and Liefs, Johanna


Toronto & Art

 

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You are probably familiar with the fact that both of my sons, The Young Misters Walker, study, work and live in Toronto. They are very close and share an apartment. We are close as a family and modern communication provides us with ample opportunities to be a close long distance family.IMG_1072

But nothing beats seeing my boys for real and since their schedule is pretty crazy, I travel to them more often. And often Mr. Walker, their devoted father, travels with me.This summer we went there a couple of times and here some snapshots from the family album.

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Toronto is a great city (apart from its crazy traffic!!!) We love going there and visit its many beautiful museums and pretty neighborhoods. There is always something beautiful to admire.

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The AGO is our favorite museum. The building itself is already gorgeous, Mr. Walker took a long time taking some good shots….

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…Youngest Mr. Walker and I got impatient and studied some dance moves. The Oldest Young Mr. Walker considered giving himself up for adoption.

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Best cup of tea ever there…that to me is art every day!

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Oh, and the Bata Shoe Museum!! A must see for every fashionista! The best of both worlds, art and fashion!!!

 

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Finally saw Casa Loma…as a little girl I dreamt of having a bedroom like this! Maybe more towards the Kitsch here?

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Fantastic food is every where in Toronto but I highly recommend Buk Chang Dong Soon Tofu Korean restaurant on Bloor street..this is the BEST food in the whole world and that is an art in itself! (they do not have a website)

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Have a great weekend!

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Love and Liefs, Johanna

Lately…Lots of Important Nothings

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Whilst I was still daydreaming a little about Yellowstone Park, life went on most pleasantly. Fall has started and most of you know how happy that makes me. Long walks in colder temperatures, enjoying the colors and all treasures Mother Nature leaves us whilst she is preparing for a good rest.  It gives me a chance to show this photo again…already 2 or 3 years old. But I love it so much and can you imagine how many shots that took?;o)

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I love the atmosphere Fall brings into the house, so delightfully cozy!

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Charley and I want to be outside all day and she is giving me the stare until I grab the leash!

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Reading is so much better too when temperatures drop. I am really enjoying these books.

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I was really happy to see this flyer from Rickey illustrated by me…

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I also spent a week with my sons in Toronto for Canadian Thanks Giving and it was a celebration of so much to be thankful for indeed.

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It made even worthwhile to endure the shenanigans of the most spoiled cat in the whole of Canada…

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However, I will show you soon more of my experiments with pastels! I love working with it and it seems even lovelier on black paper.

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But first I am going to spoil a very special person for a whole week. Was I so happy to meet up with one BFF in Denver..now I am again in high spirits and very happy because another BFF from The Netherlands is coming here. I am already at the airport, for I do not want to be late for her plane to arrive;o)

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Ach de weken vliegen weer voorbij na de heerlijke reis. Allerlei belangrijke niemendalletjes die te maken hebben met een verrukkelijke herfst, geheimzinnig breien voor Kerst, meer oefenen met pastels, Thanksgiving vieren bij mijn jongens in Toronto en hun immens verwende kat! En nu ben ik al helemaal door t dolle heen omdat ik weer een fijne vriendin uit Nederland op bezoek krijg!!! Oei, ik zit al t vliegveld zodat ik haar aankomst niet mis ;o)

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Love and Liefs, Johanna


Toronto, Canada…11mm to 16mm

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We had a great Easter weekend, we were invited by The Walker Boys to spend the long weekend at their apartment! So wonderful to have the family together, sigh. We went for long walks, played board games and had a few very good home cooked meals. The weather was quite cold and no sign of Spring yet, all was sepia, grey and bare. Mr. Walker and I thought that was the perfect setting for some ‘different’ photography using the 11mm to 16 mm lens we gave each other last Christmas.


We went to The Beaches this time, explored the R. C. Harris Water Treatment Plant and loved taking the subway. Well..how do we call this kind of Photography..Documentary Photography?

Ach het was weer zo gezellig om t lange Paasweekend bij de Walker Boys door te brengen. Omdat alles nog zo grijs en grauw was besloten Meneer Walker en ik om de 11mm to 16mm mee te nemen en eens een ‘andere’ vorm van fotografie uit te proberen. Hoe noemen we dit: documentaire fotografie?

Did you have a good long weekend?

Love and Liefs, Johanna.

 

About Young Gentlemen, Christmas, Aussies and 11 to 16 mm

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Dr. Who and a Christmas tree?? Yes, you guessed right…we spent Christmas at the Walker Boys apartment in Toronto. But have a cuppa tea maybe, I have lots to show and tell…

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First more about the Oldest Walker Boy, who spent a well earned vacation at the Walker residence. He was very proud to treat Mr. Walker to whiskey and cigars. Do not worry…this is only a once-a-year-happening..and outside in the garden, thank you very much;0)

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And Young Mr. Walker made his mom very happy by taking her to the Antique Mall, where she found the most photogenic Christmas present of the year, though the rest of the Walker Clan found that very debatable. I love Royal Copley from the fifties and I wanted this Deer with Fawn planter so badly already for a long time. Young Mr. Walker knew what to do when he saw his mom cooing and purring when she discovered this one. He gave it to me for Christmas.

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I have more Royal Copley. This fine example was giving to me by a dear friend last spring..according to her it was the most hideous present she ever bought. She was still shaking her head when she saw me yodeling and doing a little dance when unwrapping it.  Mr. Walker claims it grows on him but is ( very, very) happy I keep them in my studio….

I know you can buy them by the dozen on Ebay, but I rather find them at sales etc or get them as presents. OK I am rambling back to the story.

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Juuust before we left for Toronto, this lovely Christmas bunting made by Dani arrived all the way from down under Australia…I could not post about it anymore but thank you so much dear girl!! We enjoyed it so much and we never had a Christmas card from Australia before. We and everybody visiting us, were completely fascinated by it! Dani, btw has a lovely blog about her beautiful home and garden and twins and the sweetest critters and gorgeous crochet work. 

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Mr. Walker and I both like photographing and since Christmas and both our birthdays are so close together..we decided to give each other an 11 to 16mm lens ( by which I mean, we bought one and share it;0)) and of course we could not wait till Christmas but started playing with it right away;0)

It still needs a lot of practicing but I love the unusual, cartoon like atmosphere it creates.

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Our House looks like a castle;0)

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Charley is wondering why there is no turkey in this oven.

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So of to Toronto: The Youngest Walker Boy just started a very nice job at a Computer Store in the Eaton Centre in Toronto. Of course he had to work during Holiday Season. Bravely he said;” Mom, we can skype on Christmas.”  Ha, no way…we packed our things and traveled to Toronto. The Youngest Walker Boy was so very happy.

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Mr. Walker and I sat relaxed on a little bench outside the store in the mall, watching all those people shopping. But even more fun, watching our son working with so much pleasure and enthusiasm and his colleagues like him so much.

And then of course, I had a fluttering handkerchief moment…because he had such a bad start in life, and things looked so grim for such a long time and he is such a fighter and now 6 feet 5 , in college and working and happy with friends and family, oh dear oh dear…such bliss.

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Well,and than Christmas at the Gentlemen’s Apartment. As you can see, the Modern Young Men even provided a crackling wood fire with presents in front;0)

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Here you see the Youngest Mr. Walker entertaining us with dancing, whilst everybody is busy in the kitchen;0)

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Leo, that cat, was happy as ever..more hands presents for belly rubs: he was ready for it!

OK tomorrow, back to work!

Love and Liefs, Johanna

About Love, Light and Winterknitting

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After living in Canada for more than seven years and with our sons in Toronto, of course, the horrible news from Canada was close to home! We know Ottawa so well, a lovely and beautiful city. And, a little to my surprise, I found it hard to make post about my ‘Important Nothings’. But the beautiful posts by Kerry and Gallivanta, made me decide to just keep on going and add a little weight to Balance in the Scale of Light and Beauty and Goodness.
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My blog is not about political statements and world issues. This is my way of contributing to ‘The Big Picture!’, just to the simple and good and loving side. ” There is a lot of love”, Anne, who lives in Ottawa, told me. And I want to feed that!
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So here it is: Simple Things in Life!
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More beautiful flowers.
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My crochet is just coming along nicely and after the slippers, I am knitting more leftover yarn away in a pair of gloves.
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That made me think of a stamp I made years ago at a workshop and I used it to make it into a drawing on this Japanese paper I still had…it looks like little snowflakes all around it.
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My favorite food: a perfect boiled egg and that egg cup makes me so happy.
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Charley…giving all her love!
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I wish you all Love and Light,
Johanna

A Gentlemen’s Apartment, Part Three…The Regal Cat!

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And of course…every Gentlemen’s Apartment needs a Cat With Attitude. And what a fine example the Regal Leo is. A very well mannered Aristocat who greets everyone who enters the door with polite authority and receives exclamations about his magnificent appearance with dignified modesty. ( yeah, as if…that vain cat does not fool me!)

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Can you believe it that about six years ago this lovely fellow was found on the road, hit by a car more dead than alive. Our vet was taken by his beauty and performed extensive surgery to save his life. (Later we adopted him.) Today he still limbs, has only one shoulder blade and a bit of a funny expression caused by a broken jaw, healed a bit crooked.

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This does not bother him at all, he is good natured and full of humor. Always on the lookout for a warm lap and cuddles. He is quite vocal and appreciates a good conversation, especially about food and himself.He loves all people, except women with high pitch voices. Reminds him of a cruel owner in the past or does he think it is just bad taste?

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Charley Dog and Leo hated each other with a passion, so Leo happily packed his suitcase when the Oldest Walker Boy went to university and moved with him from pillar to post in the past few years. And never minding that one bit, claiming every new dwelling immediately as his new Kingdom.

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However, he approves very much of this Gentlemen’s Apartment and the arrival of the Youngest Walker Boy, who waits on him hand and foot.

Tja, en in een Herenappartement hoort natuurlijk een deftige kat. De koninklijke Leo voldoet aan t plaatje en t is ook nog eens een gezellige prater en knuffel.

Love and Liefs,

Johanna.

A Gentlemen’s Apartment, Part One and a Winner!

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Last weekend, it was Thanksgiving Weekend in Canada. Mr. Walker took some extra days off, we packed our suitcases and went to Toronto where both our Walker Boys live. A few weeks ago, we helped them move to their beautiful two bedroom apartment. And now they had invited us for Thanksgiving! Uhm, before we go further: my wide angle lens is absolute rubbish, but we all are going to pretend the following photos are perfect and ready to star on Apartmenttherapy.com ;0)

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I still cannot believe, we found this gorgeous apartment so close to downtown. Shops around the corner with bus stops and subway stations. From the balcony a view to stately gardens and a little park: shade in the summer, sunshine in the winter and a feel of nature all year round…I sound like a real estate agent here!

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After moving from one to the next ‘student-settlement’ for a few years, Young Mr Walker and the even Younger Mr. Walker decided to look for a decent place to live together ( they get along very well) and after a long, very long search found this lovely, lovely place. ( can you tell, I really like it?)

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Aaaaand, Mr. Walker and I do not have to stay in hotels anymore when visiting our offspring. There is room enough for us for a couple of days and we can relax, cook and share meals and have quality family time.

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I think, these Young Urban Gentlemen did a very good job in decorating this place.

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More tomorrow.

So now about my Giveaway: it turned out that Anne from Ottawa, Judith from London and the lovely Milk Maid from Christchurch had the right size. Oh, agony, who to choose??? I know you are all good sports, so here my decision:  since Judith already owns an example of my knitting, and in New Zealand Spring is well on its way…it seemed so fair to protect Anne’s feet from the harsh cold winter in Canada…which I know from experience, is very cold indeed!

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So Anne, my dear, email me your address at colorpencil.2014@gmail.com and you will have them before the snow flies!

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We hadden een geweldig lang weekend in Toronto, op uitnodiging van the Walker Boys, die sinds kort in dit prachtige appartement wonen. Mijn groothoeklens is tamelijk waardeloos maar je kan toch zien dat het een bijzonder leuk en erg fraai ingericht Herenappartement is!

De slofjes zijn overigens gewonnen door Anne in Ottowa, die in Canada de grootste kans op erg koude voeten heeft!

Love and Liefs,

Johanna.