Sunday, 28 October 2012

Zutphen & Dear Jane

Once a month I travel to Zutphen and park across from the Walburgis Church. This church was build between the 13th & 16th Century. This is the view from my parking space.


A couple of Janiac’s gather here every month.



I’m busy making an easy peasy baby Jane block. Thought I would give the appliqué blocks a miss today Blushing


Lovely threads. Had to take a photo.



I’ve nearly completed another baby Jane. Although I have to admit, the 2 hours are just not long enough for me to complete the whole block.

On the way home I naturally had to stop and visit the alpaca farm. Think this is a baby alpaca! Isn’t it cute? Love its cheeks!


Sunday, 21 October 2012

Meaning of ‘my’ life!

Who wants to live in a world where average is the expectation? I want to be somewhere that I am expected to be great. But when it comes to defining what I really want – what I love, it kind of gets all twisted. It’s not about the money, It’s not about the prestige or the recognition. It’s not even about success or happiness. It is about contribution. I want to make a difference. Be it big or small, I want to have an impact.

I want to give meaning to creating a better healthcare system, a better place for patients and their family and friends. To realize this, I choose my work as a catalyst. I want to change the world, especially for those who have lost something. May it be their health or well-being.

Right now I have a choice, I can sit on the sidelines and not get my work done, or I can choose to be proactive. I want to be heard! I want to matter. It is necessary to do it now when you look at the cons of our individualistic society.

“….putting problems at the centre of our decision-making changes everything. It’s not about the self anymore. It’s about what you can do and how you can be a valuable contributor. People working on the biggest problems are compensated in the biggest ways. I don’t mean this in a strict financial sense, but in a deeply human sense. For one, it shifts your attention from you to others and the wider world. You stop dwelling. You become less self-absorbed. Ironically, we become happier if we worry less about what makes us happy…” ~ Oliver Segovia

To analyze my level of proactive energies, I ask myself the following 3 questions:

  • Can I do it? Do I really believe I’m capable of achieving this? Can I accomplish this task? But most important do I recognize what is eating away at my ‘can do’ attitude? Can I steer myself away from negative orientated people and let myself not be affected by what they say and do?
  • Do I have a reason to do it? Is it worth it? Does anyone care? I believe so. There is a connection when I speak on this subject. People recognize what I want to achieve.
  • Am I energized? Or am I too exhausted (mentally or physically) to get something done? These last questions are tricky as I have to admit that the fire within me is a little subdued.

Bringing meaning to my life and work is important to me. If I don’t have that I don’t get anything done.

However sometimes obstacles just get me down and I find I’m forcing myself to get started even with the knowledge of why I’m doing what I’m doing. To overcome my inertia, I focus on what makes me happy. I look at my pick-me-up mouse pad.


What big problem serves as my compass? Patient care in the last phase of life.

Happiness comes from the intersection of what you love, what you're good at, and what the world needs.

Finding my way in a diverse world means further developing my role. Tapping into a new mind-set, a new skill set, a new habit.

Looking forward to the future for I know I’ll be doing something that matters.  Giving meaning to my life and making it a happier place for the ‘others’.

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Quilt workshop

Last May I signed up for a workshop that will be given by Jacqueline de Jonge. Want to know more about Jacqueline, visit her website here. For those going to the International Quilt Festival in Houston, you might see her! I heard she will be there.

I signed up for the Twinkle Star quilt, that she designed sometime ago. Found a picture on the web, to show how it will turn-out. Awesome quilt, don’t you think? For the curious, this quilt contains nearly 1400 pieces. What have I taken on, little worried nowWorried!!


Naturally I’ll be making the big version: 190 x 220 cm (75 x 86 inches). This week I received a envelop with the pattern. Although the workshop is not till a couple of weeks, I thought I better start with the preparations. Yes, I actually got homework to do!!

So this morning I drove to Putten to the Quilt shop to buy some fabrics. Lucky me, I was able to take advantage of the 25 % discount the owner was giving this week. The reason for this great discount was that the owner was celebrating her 12 1/2 year anniversary. The quilt shop, picture underneath, was established in March 2000. I missed the first 5 years but the other 7 1/2 I’ve been following lots of classed here. 

Photo: Vandaag de 1e feestdag van ons  12½ jarig bestaan,<br />heel gezellig, veel drukte en de ballonnen maakte alles heel feestelijk.<br />U bent van harte welkom

Here is a close-up underneath of the fabrics I bought for the Twinkle Star Quilt. Three greens, 3 orange, 3 pinks, one purple, one striped fabric and red fabric for the corners.


Nice and bright aren’t they? I think this quilt will go to Tess (my other niece) once it is finished. How long do you think it will take me to finish this quilt? Reminder, before you answer, it has nearly taken me 6 years to complete Zoë’s Quilt Blushing.


Tonight the fabrics will be washed and once they are dry and ironed, I will cut strips in preparation of the workshop.

New Bike




Going shopping!

comfortable anonymity

I usually go through life with comfortable anonymity. Until that moment someone comes up to you and says where do I know you from? Usually my response is I don’t know. But there are times that this answer does not satisfy the other person. I like living incognito, but I have to admit I love seeing the surprise when they realize it is ‘me’! Yes, besides being a quiltmaker I’m also a  researcher who has published on quality of life of patients who survived a cardiac arrest and have an ICD. For some I’m know as Dr. Helen Kamphuis.

Here is ‘me’ giving a presentation in Munich a couple of weeks ago.



It is a big happening! Total attendance this year was 26600 people. 


The taxis kept on coming and going. Dropping of nearly all the medical professionals working in the area of cardiology in Europe.


Inside view.


Lots of cardiologists, nurses, allied professionals, and researchers. Lots of men! Didn’t see hardly any women. I’m sure the ratio was 90 to 10 for every 100 health professionals.


This week someone approached me in my village. She was sure she knew me. After a while it became clear her husband had an ICD. It is scary, when you realize you are not as anonymous as you thought.

Monday, 15 October 2012

Meditative moment

“When we make room for silence, we make room for ourselves. Silence invites the unknown, the untamed, the wild, the shy, the unfathomable – that which rarely has a chance to surface within us.”  Gunilla Norris, Sharing Silence

What does it mean to wonder? According to Gunilla, it means to fully experience without mental conclusions. To wonder is open-ended and full of attention. To wonder is to be alive with curiosity and spaciousness and with such courtesy toward the given that it has the chance to become a gift to us.

The 33rd verse of the Tao has brought me into a ‘wondering’-state. Wonder how this verse  will  effect  you?

One who understands others has knowledge; one who understands himself has wisdom. Mastering others requires force; mastering the self needs strength.

If you realize that you have enough, you are truly rich.

One who gives himself to his position, surely lives long, one who gives himself to the Tao, surely lives forever.

It will take me a few days to process this. I’m paying attention to the flow of my life.

I’m practicing letting go. Yes, letting go of my expectations and judgments. This will be a challenge considering the place I am at now. But I’m hoping that in  time, my open attending will become a continuous state, a deep relatedness that is known as meditation or prayer without ceasing.

“Let your ears hear whatever they want to hear; let your eyes see whatever they want to see; let your mind think whatever it wants to think; let your lungs breathe in their own rhythm. Do not expect any special result, for in this wordless and idealess state, where can there be past or future, and where any notion of purpose”. Allan Watts, Tao, the watercourse way.

Trying to grasp the


Saturday, 13 October 2012

Going to Nantes!

Next year April, from the 24th till the 27th, you will find me here.

View Larger Map

Yes, you guessed right, I’m going to Pour L’Amour du Fil, the big quilt fair in France.

My French isn’t that good, but lucky for us we now have Google Translator. This is the translation: For the love of Yarn.

As many already know, this trade fair is exclusively dedicated to creative and imaginative ideas for working with fabrics, threads and yarns of all types. Can’t wait to experience the atmosphere, meet the many different designers and take a class or two. There are some quilters I have been admiring from afar for some time. Artist like Di Ford, Kaffe Fassett, Polly Minick & Laurie Simpson. It is great to see that Petra Prins will be there too.

But I can’t wait to meet Brenda Papadakis, yes, the author of the Dear Jane book. As a janiac I won’t miss this ‘Dear Jane’ exhibition.

Like the international quilt festival in Houston, there will be lots of booths. Wonder who will be there. This is an impression of the show in 2012.

Hope this quilt fair will be just as good as the one last April. From what I hear from other quilters, I won’t be disappointed. 

I’m sure I will need lots of pocket money.

I’m not going alone! Mirjam, will be joining me. We have been talking about undertaking this trip for some time. I guess she is looking forward to this adventure as much as I am. As she has already booked our hotel! This means we are really going!

If you have plans to go too, let me know. Would love to meet up with you and hear about your quilt passion.

Countryside bike ride












After a 14km bike ride last Sunday and taking lots of photos, the handlebar of my bike collapsed downwards from the stem and I nearly fell off.  Had to walk the remaining one kilometre home. Had this aching pain in my shoulders for a couple of days. I guess I got of lightly. There could have been a lot more damage.

Guess who has replace her bike with this beauty? I present the Gazelle Espirit Tongue out


It will be delivered coming week. Hopefully I will be riding again soon.

FIETSgroep = quilt bee










A impression of all the works my fellow class mates are working on. Some completed and some still a WIP. There are definitely some crafty people in this class.