Monday, January 28, 2013

A Week's Mish-Mash

First of all, today is my turn at Vision and Verb again....

...and it's about coloring outside the lines.
This is my second time in 3 years to pick up the 12 books I brought with me
when I moved here to the Netherlands, collected from 10 years ago.
I feel like I have found a much-neglected friend!

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Secondly, Astrid and I went to see Les Miserables yesterday, Sunday, at our nearby theater's 11a showing.  We were the only ones there!  It was our own private presentation...and meant I could cry unabashedly every time I wanted to.  OMG!  I don't care what anyone else says, it was W O N D E R F U L.  

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Thirdly, my laptop was in for its manual maintenance for 4 days last week.  OUCH!  I do NOT like being without my friend day in and day out.  Sure, I was able to use Astrid's and did, thanks to her gracious generosity.  But as you know, it's not the same.  For one thing, I didn't have access to PhotoShop and therefore did no processing of images.  HEAVENS!

BTW, I had never heard of an annual maintenance for a laptop, but I've faithfully done it now for 3 years...and it appears to be paying off.  And the reason why it took 4 days instead of one is because they found a virus that by-passed our Norman security.  That little bugger!

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Now, with what was left of the weekend, I was able to process images from a couple weekends ago when we drove out into the polder...after getting more snow.

 I suspect one day I will sing "I left my heart in the Polder!"
That's how much I love it.

 Astrid took a slight detour from the way we ususally drive home after the pannenkoeken restaurant. 
Lucky for us, we found a small stretch on one of the canals where skating actually was good.
Most of the canals this year have had slushy ice because the snow fell while it was freezing.
Astrid can give you the whole science behind it.  Trust me.

 But it was the sheep...always the sheep...that stole my heart.

How can you resist them!

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Did I ever mention that Astrid has a green thumb?  As second nature as it is for her to bike-ride and ice-skate, she thoroughly enjoys growing flowers and plants on our window sill.  So, I got out my macro lens while my laptop was gone.

 She bought 3 amaryllis bulbs...one pink...

 ... and two red.
Oh yes, I also got out my oculus, as you see.
Those plants totally blow my mind.  Have you ever watched them grow??!!
And seen how strong their stems are to grow so tall and hold so much weight!

 But THIS blows my mind even more!
Astrid buys hyacinths throughout the winter but this first one is, as you see...in water.
I had never seen this done in my life, with a vase made for it.
Not only did she never add water after the initial fill, it never turned cloudy or dirty.

You all know by now it doesn't take much to make me happy!  Which reminds me to remind you about my coloring post today at Vision and Verb

18 comments:

  1. Snow and ice, you have been so lucky that the last 4 years we had both of them.
    I always smile when you see 'sheeps' in the polder. I have to stop and you get some pictures. I intended to get a nice shot myself.... NO WAY, the moment they spotted me, off they ran, to the far end of the meadow.....
    You took some fabulous shots of the amaryllis and the hyacinth. To me the hyacinth on water, is and will be, always spectacular.
    The amaryllis is a treat, for so little money, so much pleasure.
    Great post again with beautiful pictures.

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    1. I KNOW I am lucky to have seen snow here each year thus far...kinda like having it in Atlanta. I just wish you could have skated this season. Is there really no more chance? It won't get freezing cold again???

      You know how much I love your green thumb. It thrills me to no end the way you love your plants and watch over them with TLC. The orchids, of course, are all year 'round!

      Hartstikke bedankt, MLMA.

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  2. A delightful post again Ginnie. The pictures of the sheep in the snow are so good – you could make Christmas/New Year cards out of them for sure. The Polder is certainly beautiful when blanketed with snow. No snow here, we are in the mid 50s today and going to the high 60s this week. Your flower pictures are great. Looking at hyacinths makes me sad, in a way. You see my mother used to buy a potted hyacinth for my birthday, each year. On the morning of 26 March (my birthday) there would be a potted hyacinth near my café au lait at breakfast – every year. So, when I see them I remember this – it’s a little remembrance of things of my past in France.

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    1. You're very kind and generous, Vagabonde. We make a good Mutual Admiration Society. :)

      What a sweet remembrance of your mother's gift for you every birthday. I don't think I'll ever forget that story! Thanks for sharing its bittersweetness.

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  3. What a perfect shot of those sheep, just posing so prettily for you! And Astrid's flowers are just spectacular ... that's a grand idea of growing the hyacinth in water, it's like a work of art!
    You girls are very talented, indeed!

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    1. You're a sweetheart, Susan. Thank you. You would fall in love with Astrid...a woman of MANY talents. She, too, would fall in love with all the creativity of you and Larry both! :)

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  4. Somehow I am not surprised that Astrid has a green thumb. :) I love amaryllis and hyacinth. How lovely!

    And oh you poor thing to be without your laptop so long!

    I love that polder. Those sheep! All wonderful.

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    1. Astrid is one of those rare persons who can do just about anything, sister, in or outside of the house! She'd be the first to tell you if she couldn't do something, but I'm not sure what it would be. Actually, I do know: she has a real mistrust of the internet and computers, having no clue about how they work most of the time. I think it's probably a healthy fear, to be honest!

      Speaking of which, it's never fun being without my laptop. But it's probably a good exercise once in awhile, now that I have it back. Easy to say now. :)

      I know you love the sheep as much as I do. The brethren! May they live forever. And thank you, as always.

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  5. i've never seen a hyacinth survive without soil before. another talent in the arsenal of talents that astrid have, a green thumb. my hyacint sits in my kitchen window sill and while the leaves came out early, i don't see a sign of any bloom yet, pity.

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    1. I have no clue how these things work, Maria, only that they do under Astrid's surveillance. She finds great joy in watching plants grow and seems to know exactly what to do and when. I quite admire her! :) Maybe I should send her over?

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  6. I love the sheep photos and Astrid's lovely flowers!

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  7. Those hyacinth "vases" brought back childhood memories - my brother and I each had one and putting in the hyacinths was probably the first of the build up to Christmas. I've tried mini ones for crocuses, but they have never been nearly as successful.

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    1. I love it when someone else knows exactly what I'm talking about, Anne. This is all new stuff for me. :) Thanks for sharing.

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  8. The bare trees in winter take my breath away, but add sheep and you have perfection. ;) The hyacinths are fascinating - just WoW!

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    1. It doesn't take much to please us, Margaret, does it! May it always be so. Thank you.

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  9. I neglected to comment on the V&V post how beautiful your coloring effort is! It never occurred to me that coloring patterns could be soothing/relaxing.

    Love the sheep images especially out of your snowy scenes. They are so cuddly looking! And the flower macros... YUMMY!

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    1. Thank you, Victoria. I've really enjoyed coloring again because it IS so soothing and relaxing. Therapeutic, too. And creative, since I have to envision what colors to use and how they will look together.

      You know me: I LOVE the sheep whenever I see them. Not growing up around them in America makes me like them even more. Here they are everywhere! :)

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