Sunday, 30 October 2011

Attitude for Gratitude post – week 43

The most meaningful thing that happened this week for which I’m super grateful is that my contract has been extended for an indefinite period. It gives me a sense of security, which I need to  focus on all those other things / goals I want to achieve / attain. I discovered a new genre of dancing Tuesday morning upon receiving the news. It is called the happy dance! Like the way I move Hot?

Hopefully this clip put a smile on your face.

I’m pretty satisfied with myself after finally finalising a article that I’ve written with some ex-colleagues. I submitted it Saturday. Hope to hear from the reviewer soon. To ensure my English was up to scratch I asked an English friend to look over it. This is what she said, ‘excellent stuff, it is astounding how good your English is, like I have said, you put most Brits to shame. Bravo’. This makes me euphoric. Thank you for those kind words. I’m ever so grateful, as I can ignore the little voice in my head, saying ‘your not good enough’.

I’m thankful to be able to enjoy these sights.


I get all happy when I see these roses on the dining table.


Delighted to let everyone know that I got my first pair of reading glasses yesterday! I’ll be able to pick them up after I get back from Houston. My first senior moment has finally arrived Nerd.

I’m trilled that in two days time I will go to Houston and finally meet- up with Amy, executive director of the Alliance for American Quilts, and the rest of the Q.S.O.S team, Linda from Quilts in The Barn and Laura from Laura’s Quilt Atelier in Amersfoort. Click here to read her blog.

Next week Sunday I won’t be posting my weekly gratitude post. But you can be assured I’m pretty grateful for the life I’m able to lead at the moment. It can’t get any better.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Meditative moment


It is neither wealth nor splendour; but tranquillity and occupation which give you happiness. ~ Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, 23 October 2011

No ‘gratitude post’ for week 42

Feeling a little under the weather today. My brain hurts and feeling a little nausea. It is too hard to verbalise my thoughts. So I’ve decided to give my brain a little rest. Really need to learn to pace myself a little better.


I’m grateful that I can finally allow myself a little ‘me’ time and not feel guilty.

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Being crafty

Today I had a Tilda doll-making workshop in Putten in the Quilt Cellar. Finally going to learn how to make those wonderful Tilda dolls. Do check-out Tone Finnanger’s website, here. I thought it would be easy and was pretty convinced I would go home in the afternoon with this Christmas man.  He is so cute!IMG_7014

But this is all I had with me at the end of the day. Two arms and two legs!! The body still needs to be stuffed. And, I still have to cut out his coat and pants.


Coming Wednesday, I can continue with this WIP. Here is me working hard today! Getting lots of assistance. I was really having trouble concentrating and remembering the instructions. I must have left my brain at home!

2011_10_22_Tilda Xmas Workshop1

Here is a collage of the other ladies who attended this class.

2011_10_22_Tilda Xmas Workshop2

Had a smashing time. However, my back is hurting a little at the moment. I should mind my sitting posture more. It would be really nice to get a massage at the moment, but sadly have to wait another two and half weeks!

The adventures of the Tilda Christmas man will continue.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Attitude of gratitude is everything – week 41

The weeks are flying past! Why does time fly when you are happy and time goes slow when you are not? It is hard to imagine that this time last year I was searching for an answer to the question: what do I want to be when I grow up, what makes me happy, what am I truly searching for and why am I not moving! What is holding me back? I felt lost and was very unhappy. Funny how a change of scene can put everything in a different perspective. It is hard to remember how I struggled.

I am grateful that I can set things in motion. I’m even more grateful that I’ve found my place at work. It is really true that the single most efficient way to increase your productivity is to be happy at work. Happy people work better with others. Happy people are more creative. Happy people fix problems. Happy people have more energy. Happy people are more optimistic. Happy people are way more motivated. Happy people learn faster. It is really true, choose a job that makes you go…


The new company I work for allows room for both positive and negative emotions. It also allows room for spirituality. As a result, people are happy at work. I’m grateful that I decided to follow my heart when accepting this job offer, instead of choosing rationally. I didn’t base my decision on the salary, titles, perks and status.

‘’… social scientific research has largely confirmed the thesis that affect, attitudes, beliefs and behaviour can indeed spread through populations as if they were somehow infectious.’  This is also true for the workplace. Through experience I’ve learned to spend lots of time hanging around "happy people" and keeping my distance from "deeply unhappy" people. ‘….negative emotions exert a more powerful effect in social situations than positive ones, thanks to the phenomena of emotional contagion.’ 

I’m joyful that I could swap my regular yoga evening to another night. I’m absolutely blissful that I’m getting some extra light in my study! Yes, getting an extra roof window real soon, if it doesn’t rain coming Thursday. Pretty gratified after our shopping spree Saturday in Moers, Germany. It was fun shopping with my mum and MIL, especially on such a sunny autumn day. Smiling after hearing that I will get winter tyres for my car. Will be able to drive all those miles on cold and slippery roads because of rain, frost or snow and experiencing little stress. Still feeling pretty tickled after my phone call from my boss. But I’m most grateful for the feeling of elation nearly all this week.


"Be the change that you want to see in the world." ~ Ghandi

Walk the talk – show your attitude for gratitude!

flight socks!

Sitting still for long periods of time in cramped conditions can lead to swollen ankles and occasionally DVT (=Deep Vein Thrombosis). As I’m sometimes afflicted with swollen ankles even when I’m not flying, I thought I should get myself some of these.


Don’t they look charming? But flight socks can help prevent:

  • Risk of circulatory problems such as  DVT (blood clots)
  • Helps prevent swollen ankles and tired legs on long haul flights
  • Improve blood circulation

Practicing self-care before and during my flight can go a long way toward ensuring that my ankles and feet swelling doesn’t spoil my  vacation to Houston. Swollen ankles and feet are most likely the result of the accumulation of fluid building up in my body during the flight.

Preventive measures:

  • Regular stretching and mobility exercises and short walks around the cabin during the flight if possible.
  • Drinking sufficient fluids to keep the urine pale.
  • Taking a low dose aspirin tablet (75mg) for its anti-adhesive effects on blood platelets.
  • The use of compression stockings.
  • Wearing loose-fitting clothing

So if you happen to see me walking by, you now know why. As I need to drink lots of fluids (water), I’ll therefore will be going to the loo (toilet) a lot!! My was to kill two birds with one stone. Resolving two matters with a single action. I also get a little exercise! So guess who will be getting an aisle seat? This seat enables me to walk up and down the aisle for exercise and going to the loo (toilet) without disturbing others.

Another 15 more sleeps and I’ll be going to Houston!!

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Photinia fraseri 'Red Robin'

Just ordered two of these.imageThe stem is 1.80 tall and the top of the tree is about a meter wide. But it will take a little while before it will look like this. One will be planted on the left side of our backyard and the other one on the right side. I choose the Photinia because it keeps its leaves in the winter. It is a evergreen tree with glossy bright red young growth and white flowers in spring  Smile.

The gardener wouldn’t except my order by phone so I drove to our local garden centre. Checked out the trees in pouring rain. Can you imagine me in high heels and skirt trying to jump puddles?

They will be delivered in two weeks time. Expect some pictures of men in trees. Hubby and a mate of his, will be digging out numerous of trees. Some will be replanted and others will be replaced by these two. Can’t wait to see how the backyard will look. If you have any suggestions for scrubs that can be planted underneath, that can handle shade and moist, I would love to hear from you.

The trees will be delivered at 8am! Don’t quit know how I’m going to prepare hubby for this news. He is not a morning person, especially in weekends he likes to sleep inThinking. While the guys are working hard in the garden, I will be interviewing quiltmakers in Houston.

Run away to Houston with me and volunteer for team Q.S.O.S. Full information on the AAQ website, here


swapped evening!

Meditative moment is Wednesday this week.


“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else's life. Don’t be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” ~ Steve Jobs (1955-2011)


Sunday, 9 October 2011

Gratitude post – week 40

Grace is completely free! "Grace, the state of kindness and favour towards someone, often with a focus on a benefit given to the object." I personally see grace as the ultimate key required for spiritual self-realization. I find grace throughout the day. Trying to understand the Tao helps me find grace. I’m also intrigued by the philosophical aspects of Tao (or Dao), or to be more precise, the natural and mercurial outcomes of action. Where every action creates counter-actions. 

There are no days in life so memorable as those which vibrated to some stroke of the imagination ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

The power of repetitiveness amazes me. It is the engine that drives the ability to influence. The success of an influence can create transmittance of an idea. Two years ago I proposed that health insurers provide a policy to enable clients to save for future care needs. Today I read in my newspaper that health insurers are going to do that. Future patients when confronted with the outcome of their chronic disease, will be able to activate their personal budget that will enable them to get a nurse, hire a special bed or get a wheelchair. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who thought of this idea, but if you voice your thoughts often enough eventually this leads to many counter-actions and it becomes reality. 

I’m thankful for having found Emily, but especially her blog ‘Chatting at the sky, a place for your soul to breathe’. To be able to voice your thoughts like her. I applaud her style. But there is also recognition when I read some of her posts. Do check-out her blog, especially this post: change the world - receive grace. Absolutely awesome, if you want to know my opinion.

I’m joyous that my cash-flow enables me to buy a new bag and boots this week. I’m finally getting grips on my spending, now I’m out of debt. 

Feeling rapturous the past couple of weeks. I’m enjoying my work again, but most of all I enjoy being part of this organization-environment. I’m so pleased to notice a change in me. I’m less effected by the opinions and needs of others. I feel more confident and capable. I have more control over my life and the decisions I make. I’m more resilient. Empowerment is far easier to write about than to achieve. But I think I’ve finally understand the principles of it and for this I’m grateful. There many qualities to empowerment: having decision-making power, having access to information and resources, having a range of options from which to make choices, assertiveness, a feeling that the individual can make a difference (being hopeful), learning to think critically; learning the conditioning; seeing things differently, learning about and expressing anger, not feeling alone; feeling part of a group, understanding that people have rights, affecting change in one's life and one's community, learning skills that the individual defines as important, changing others' perceptions of one's competency and capacity to act, coming out of the closet, growth and change that is never ending and self-initiated, increasing one's positive self-image and overcoming stigma. I’ve overcome the harmful impact of stigmatization. I’ve had to re-learn how to handle prejudice and discrimination, but I especially had to re-learn how to react to it.  Overcoming these adversities has been an empowering process but I truly can say I’m now more resilient. But my biggest achievement is to allow myself to be me.

There are two great days in a person's life - the day we are born and the day we discover why ~ William Barclay

Saturday, 8 October 2011

What to do with $1000?

Well I’ll try to answer that question. It was Sweet P, from Coffee Times Stitches, who put this question in the world.

By the way Sweet P, a Happy birthday to you ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪

Firstly I will have to convert this amount to Euros. This leaves me with € 744.82. It is now real easy to answer this question. So many choices to make but I think I definitely want more light in my study! Now the winter is approaching slowly, the days are becoming shorter and the evenings longer in the Northern Hemisphere. Today sunrise will be at 7:53 and sunset 19:03. That is 11 hours and 9 minutes of light! At the moment while writing this post, it is real dark. I see no stars, no clouds, it is pitch dark outside my window.

But I’m evading in answering the question. I’m good at that Nerd.

Before I start rambling on why I do that, I will answer Sweet P’s question. I would spend an large amount on installing one of these. A roof window.


So when the sun comes up, I will hopefully catch the first ray’s on my desk.

With the money I have left, which won’t be much, I would spend on a Rhythmical Hauschka Massage. Two hours of bliss.

But than again, I kind of also want an iPad Tongue outSad. I so love my iPhone that I have to admit I’m becoming an Apple fan. The iPad can sit on the dining table and I can read all those blogs there instead of behind my desktop computer in my study.

I was deeply saddened after reading that Steve Jobs died, last Wednesday, as I just started to appreciate Apple. I’m crazy about the iPhone4 and love my iPod Nano. Steve was indeed a visionary man but the reason I appreciate him the most was that he truly understood how applications should work. The iPhone is so easy and intuitive to use even I can use it.

I was saddened but not surprised. My diagnostic skills are still pretty good. I’m actually amazed that he was able to hang on to life so long.

There is so little one can say, but my heart goes out to his family and to those people he mentored. We really lost an insightful and visionary person.

Friday, 7 October 2011

New quilt circle

Sometimes you need a little change. I’ve joined a new quilt circle (F.I.E.T.S.-groep) which is on a Wednesday night. We individually work on our own projects/works but it becomes a lot more fun because we do it together. And the bonus is, when you need assistance, Aagje is there to help.

I’m back working on my log cabin quilt. Haven’t made much progress during the summer months. Naturally, I thereforeI had some difficulty in getting started. Pfaffy refused to sewAngry I forgot how to insert the bobbin correctly into the shuttle case!!! That is why practice, practice is so important.


I did remembered how to insert the bobbin in the case and that the thread runs in a clockwise direction Smile.

But when inserting the bobbin into the shuttle, it just didn’t pop in.


It wouldn’t click, heard no click-sound and so Pfaffy refused to do what it is good at, sew. Lucky for me , Aagje was there to showed me (again) how to do itEmbarrassed.


However I do have to admit that there is a definite ‘experience curve’ to be noted. But I need to concentrate and focus, but I have to admit this is a little difficult as the quilters in this group are real friendly ladies and chatter-boxes. I’m sure this will become a nice new experience as it is real ‘gezellig’ homey group.


Produced one block this evening! Can you believe it?


Got to know the quilters a little better especially the ladies on the left. Looking forward to the next quilt circle. Here is a picture of the quilters in my new circle.


The lady standing is Aagje, our teacher.

Naturally, there is always time for show & tell.

A bag.


A pillow under construction.


A quilt top nearly completed.


A bear wall hanging.


  This will become a tea cosy.


This is becoming an art-quilt.


A beautiful big traditional quilt, partly quilted.


Last but not least, someone will be making this little quilt wall hanging. It is so Dutch! Love the pattern. Isn’t it cute?