Lately….

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Little important nothings of the goings on at the Walker Residence. Like the summer nights that gradually start a little earlier, now midsummer has passed. It’s really noisy with crickets and cicadas chirping and buzzing like mad.

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Charley adorned with her favorite jewel is looking out for those cheeky raccoons!

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And what a glorious feeling it was, to safe together with a neighborhood boy and two police officers 11 little ducklings who had fallen in the sewer. Mama Wood Duck had alerted us with running in circles around the grate of the sewer. Amazingly, once we started hauling up the little babies, she settled herself underneath a bush in the garden calling to and collecting her brood.  The long limbed lady in hat is me, the handle of the net was a bit short and my arms were by far the longest…

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Summer baking..a lovely lemon pie and an upside down apple cake.

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Experimenting with markers…that’s actually quite hard to work with!

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Summer reading consists of revisiting classics like ‘Jane Eyre’ and ‘Middle March’ .But I also enjoy this delightful 1930 children’s book ever so much! I am certainly of a later date but it still brings happy memories!

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Youngest Mr. Walker was here for a week, and Charley enjoyed going for drives even more!

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And I always enjoy watching water striders. They have so many different names. In Dutch they are called ‘skate riders’ .

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But the Stars of Summer in my opinion are these elegant water damsels.

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De zomer gaat door, met steeds langere zomeravonden, samen met politie agenten en een buurjongen eendjes redden uit t riool , taarten bakken, lekker lezen, experimenteren met stiften , een bezoek van de jongste Walkerboy en leuke dieren in de natuur als schaatsen rijders en waterjuffers.

Love and Liefs, Johanna

Lately….

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What happened in every day life at the Walker residence? Well, there was a fabulous tea party with a couple fabulous friends in honor of a birthday.  The weather was perfect…

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Then the weather turned nasty hot and our backyard birds were so happy with our fountain.

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I gave a lovely smart cookie of a girl a book and card for her 6th birthday and look what she send me for a ‘Thank You Note’ !! What a talent and a promise for the future!!!

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It is always a secret wish of mine, to have chickens scurrying and scratching around in the garden. However, we travel too much and Charley loves chickens in different way (nicely cut up in her bowl…) So I am very happy with this jolly fat chicken, I found in a yard sale for 5 dollar and she takes care of herself!!!

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Knitting these mittens is such bliss…at least when my hands are not too hot and sweaty.

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And I finished and blocked this colorful shawl. Charley thinks it matches her coat very well.

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Wat gebeurde er zoal in Huize Walker de laatste tijd? Nou bijvoorbeeld een gezellig thee partijtje met gezellige vriendinnen. Vogels die verkoeling zoeken van wel heel heet weer.Een bijzonder leuk meisje die een wel heel fraai bedankbriefje stuurde voor een cadeautje met kaartje. En ach…deze gezellige dikke kip!! Slechts 5 dollar op een garage sale en zij zorgt ook nog es voor zichzelf. Charley was teleurgesteld want zij ziet liever een kipje lekker in t pannetje ;o) Zij wilde wel even fotomodel zijn voor deze gebreide sjaal…en als t niet klef heet is, brei ik ook graag aan deze wanten.

Happy Canada day and Happy Fourth of July…a nice long weekend for all here in North America!
Love and Liefs, Johanna

Lately…

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Well Spring has sprung and gave, next to work in the garden, lots of beautiful flowers in home to enjoy.

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There was painting to be done, the kitchen looks nice and shiny again.

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We had lovely warm days and I had plenty of time too, to just sit in the garden and watch birds and ‘our’ squirrels. They hardly left the owl box they live in and I suspected they had babies.

DSC_1049-001And indeed , we got some glimpses of them. There seem to be two…I am not always a fan of those greedy squirrels but this is so cute.

DSC_1040-001Knitting at the moment is this simple shawl but such a joy with this incredible yarn in the most beautiful colors. I so wanted to knit in colors after reading this book about Sonia Delaunay.

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I watched the documentary on Vivian Maier and I am fascinated by her story. A sad story too in a way. I ordered her books from the library and I am enjoying it so much…what an incredible talent this remarkable woman had!

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DSC_1104-001My sister was here with my brother-in-law for a whole week …such bliss. She spoiled me rotten and amongst the many presents she left me with, this lovely donkey for my collection. She shook her head…

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Am I the only one who loves these??? Mr. Walker says, he likes them best in my studio ;0) …but I am still moping and sulking now my sister travelled back all the way to The Netherlands.


So best remedy for that: busy working again! For instance on a tea themed card set a lovey friend requested…it makes me very happy!

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Aaaand Mr. Walker and I did also some very exciting traveling ourselves!! Can you guess where we were? More about that later.

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Nou dat was een drukke tijd met veel werk in de tuin en ondertussen genieten ook van schattige eekhoorntjes, de keuken kreeg een likje verf, mijn zuster en haar man kwamen op bezoek vanuit Nederland (en gingen weer terug, snif!) Lekker breien en weer druk met tekenen. En meneer Walker en ik zijn op reis geweest…raad eens waar we waren?
Meer daarover later!

Love and Liefs, Johanna

Kelly’s Bear, Cold Birds and Judy’s Prize

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Finished Kelly’s bear…with the cold spell in the forecast, it seems he is in a good place. I hope, he falls asleep again soon and does not wake up before Spring;0)

And I will keep on feeding the birds until that time!

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And the Lovely Judy (please check out her blog, it is such a cozy place!!!) won the pillow cases. So please Judy, email me your address at colorpencil.2014@gmail.com and I will send them to you ASAP!

Have a lovely weekend!

Love and Liefs, Johanna

This week…All Important Nothings!

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How much fun that give away was! Although I was a bit sad for the ‘non-winners’, I really enjoyed the enthusiasm of the winners and the nice emails that followed. For the non-winners: Laurie has a fun give-away on her blog!

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The weather is hot, …even the eggs are sweating ;0) That is all I will whine say about it.

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It just means indoor fun with new knitting projects. I am still knitting away left over yarn. This Fair Isle project is perfect for that.

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I bought new yarn too. This glorious yarn is a mix of merino and yak. I had never seen that before. A little research learned me that Yaks provide excellent wool suitable for all kind of fabrics, used already for thousands of years by the people in the Himalayas. Louis Vuitton discovered the fine quality of it a couple of years ago and made it popular.
This name is so suitable, Tenzing Norgay was Sir Hillary’s sherpa and friend and they were the first to reach the top of the Everest. The yarn is delightful, soft and smooth and incredibly strong. And while I am knitting I think of Yaks,( and I love cattle of any kind) and mountain climbers..bliss indeed.

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I read these two delightful books about the fabulous illustrators Dr. Seuss ( one of the wisest men ever) and Virginia Lee Burton.

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Than on a summer midday this little fellow walked in our garden. It is a box turtle not often seen during the day and their numbers are sadly declining fast. I had never seen one before. I quickly took a photo because he was walking really fast. I think he was disturbed by landscapers next door and he was heading for the next garden. Not a good idea with dogs every were. I quickly grabbed the snow shovel and gently scoped him on it ( I respect the jaws of any turtle!) and brought him to the fenced of ‘wilderness’ in the back of our garden where he quickly dug him self safely away in the compost heap. I hope, he found a good new home there! That compost heap is their for the animals so he will be safe..I love that idea!

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I also love oatmeal and to my delight I see oatmeal recipes popping up left, right and centre.
This bread is fun to bake and delicious! With this hot weather I am good with a salad, some cheese and cold cuts and this bread. I did use sweet potato instead of pumpkin since the pumpkin has not really started yet (snif)

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And a few of my friends came over for a knitting circle and I baked a salmon quiche for lunch to share with them. This is my own recipe where I mix a small tin of salmon with three eggs, 1/4 cup of sour cream and 1/4 cup of shredded cheese,  add mustard, garlic,chives, thyme and oregano, pepper and salt. Use any kind of non-sweet pie crust you like and bake in the oven at 400F for 30 minutes and than 15 minutes more covered loosely with foil. This quiche is best served cold. My friends loved it.

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And I will leave you all again with a funny story. I was at supermarket and the store-manager said:”Boo” in a funny way to try to startle one of the employees. That girl was cool as a cucumber but I, who was deep in thought and studying a label, almost jumped through the roof. That alarmed the store manager again and we ended up laughing our heads of and hugging each other and many customers laughed with us. To quote my dear friend Jane Austen: “…able to make a spectacle of herself where ever she goes.” Anyhue, when I left the store, she gave me this bunch of flowers as a ‘Thank You’..well no need for that but I loved the flowers nevertheless and it resulted in other hug.

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Ondanks de wamte (de eieren zweten zelfs) toch een leuke week met nieuwe breiwerkjes, fraaie boeken, lekker bakken en delen met vrienden die gezellig langs komen, een schildpad die de tuin in kwam wandelen en een bos bloemen die ik kreeg van de manager van de supermarkt omdat ze me per ongeluk aan t schrikken maakte. Ach, dat hoefde natuurlijk helemaal niet want ik vond t wel grappig maar de bloemen zijn wel erg mooi.

Have a great weekend,

Love and Liefs Johanna.

Birds!

DSC_7089 ‘It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.’ -Henry David Thoreau DSC_7243 Although I love birds and love watching them, I do not know one warbler from the next. I have no clue what species this nimble nest builder is, but we enjoyed watching him/her weaving its pretty nest in the reeds.

We met this stately peacock in the zoo the other day, walking freely over the patio with an attitude of ” Why yes, I will pose for you for I am beautiful!” DSC_7167 And some more beautiful birds that were willing to pose for our camera… DSC_7296 DSC_7332 Love and Liefs, Johanna

This week…

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A week full of Spring surprises..have a cup of tea and I will tell you all about it. First of course, this pair of ears peeped from underneath the deck at the end of a nice Spring day…I wondered who they belonged to.

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Ah yes, a little raccoon…hungry awoken from hibernation.

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OK..it started raining, I let the little fellow have a good meal.

The garden was full of daffodils..but alas a few violent rain storms made daffodil season very short this year. Blue grape hyacinths proved to be of sturdier material. This little jug is just perfect for a little bunch, it makes me very happy.

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The vultures are back and every day there is a group of five ‘floating’ over our neighborhood,in the morning and in the evening. I wish to make a photo that shows all five gliding in circles majestically. They are an acquired taste but I think they are beautiful!

Of a totally different beauty are these tree swallows…Spring has not really begun without them.

Mr & Mrs Squirrel have properly settled down and are very territorial. So they actually prevent more squirrels from coming into the garden which is a good thing for the bird feeders. And I just love the idea that the adorable couple snuggled up cozily in their new home, lined comfortably with dry leaves and lots a hair from a shedding Charley.

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Talking about Charley…I was very surprised to find my darling girl nicely snuggled up too. She was very surprised that I did not approve.

Now she is waiting for the company of dear friends who will come and stay for the weekend.

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Ha, de lente brengt zoveel nieuw leven en verrassingen: kleine wasbeertjes, grote  gieren en snelle zwaluwen en veel regen ook. (vind ik niet zo erg) De eekhoorns hebben zich helemaal gesetteld en houden andere eekhoorns uit de tuin. In Amerika hebben we erg veel eekhoorn! Charley had zich ook comfortabel gesetteld..maar dat mocht natuurlijk niet ;0) Nu wacht ze op lieve vrienden die hier gezellig een weekend komen door brengen!

Love and Liefs, Johanna