Monday, 28 February 2011

Another gift,another trip.

Another gift that arrived on St. Valentine's day again for my birthday was from my dear life long pen friend from Austria, Sigrid. We had met once for a while years ago and again last summer when we were invited by dear Sigrid and her family to spend a week in Austria. We had a great time and visited some lovely places. So here is a short tour of Austria as we saw it. Hopefully we will meet again soon.
 I think one of the most difficult things to take a photo of is a Swarowski crystal!Isn't it sweet?I loved it!
 And here are some photos from Austria.
The forest near Sigrid's house in Linz.
 Linz on the Danube.
 At Hellbrunn Palace with the amazingly entertaining fountains.My son got soaked there.
 Hellbrunn gardens were really beautiful.
 My son looking away at Mondsee.
 Sigrid and I at Mondsee.Our colours are matching the gorgeous colourful buildings behind us.
 At Sankt Gilgen park.
 At Schafberg we went up with the train and saw Wolfgangsee under us. The smell of the wildflowers and the view were awesome
 The Linz Cathedral.
 Schloss Schonbrunn,Sissy's Palace.
 The flamingoes in the Vienna Zoo.
 The hippos in the Zoo.
 The Natural History Museum in Wien which was very interesting.

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Films for teachers and little cottages.

This weekend was filled with movies.
Last night we watched True Grit and it was very good. Jeff Bridges was exceptional.I really don't know if he or my dear Colin Firth of the King's Speech should get the Oscar Award.Also exceptional was the 15 year-old Hailee Steinfeld.
On Saturday and Sunday morning we had breakfast and coffee in bed watching two films unknown to most people and quite old but both had a school and a teacher as their main theme.I recommend them both.
First yesterday we watched  The Jar (Khomreh), a 1994 Iranian movie which shows the story of a teacher in whose school the jar from which the students drink water breaks and how they try to fix it.
Today we watched L'ecole Buissonniere, a 1949 French film of the story of a teacher who after the war goes to work in a small village in Provence and works with his own modern methods for the times of experimenting and hands on experiences.It is the true story of the teacher Celestin Freinet of 1920.
The rest of the weekend included some reading (I at last finished The island and I think the Greek TV series is much better than the book), some cross stitch ( I started making some Easter cards and little gifts) and some painting.
I also got some older cross stitch pieces from my framers and here they are on my wall.
The three on the top row were gradually sent to me by my friend Cathy from England and they were supposed to be finished as fridge magnets.The three on the second row were freebies from cross stitch magazines.I decided to frame them all in the same style so they can be put all together on the wall.
A miniature freebie.
 A village scene by Jane Greenoff's Inglestone collection.
Another miniature freebie.
 Trent cottage.DMC
 Mill cottageDMC
Unfortunately I don't remember this one.

Saturday, 26 February 2011

An aquarium at home.

Or just the deception of it. My dear Marabeth again surprised me with this lovely sharong which I am not going to wear.I will prefer to hang it on my wall in the summer house. I just gave it a wash and put it on the line to dry and although the weather today was dark it gave my living room a lovely feeling as if I was in an aquarium.
 And here is a marker drawing I had done of a painting I had seen on the Internet some years ago. I was just reminded of it .

Friday, 25 February 2011

Happy birthday Johanna!

Today it is my friend Johanna's birthday. She lives in Finland and she is one of my first pen friends. We still are in touch and have met each other both in Finland and in Greece. She sent me a birthday gift which arrived on Valentine's day. Here is her gift to me. It is a pair of earrings that is based on the traditional designs of the Saame people of Lapland.It is Kalevala jewelry
 And I am also adding some photos from our meetings both in Finland in 2007 and in Greece in 2009.
 The Turku cathedral.
 Johanna and me with our Finn caps.
 The post office in Santa's Village in Rovaniemi,Lapland.
 Our boys in Ranua Zoo.
 Overlooking the Finn lakes.
 In Athens looking at the Acropolis.
 On the Acropolis.
 In Chalkidiki in Afytos beach.
 Staphylos beach on Skopelos island.
 Saint John's on Skopelos island where Mama Mia the movie was filmed.
Skopelos island.

Thursday, 24 February 2011


This is probably a Greek custom only.
Annually on this Thursday people eat meat and get dressed for carnival.
It is ten days before Clean Monday when Lent begins and fasting for Easter.
Tsiknopempti means Thursday with tsikna which is the smell of grilled meat.
We were not really in the mood to get dressed and have fun so we simply had some meat brought at home and the men (hubbie,son,brother) watched Manchester City-Aris Salonica. We are already losing with 3-0 but well ok we are still fighters.
Here is what we ate.
 Tzatziki and pita.
 I at the same time finished a beautiful sea themed frame which will be a gift,so no photos till it is delivered.
Here I would like to show you the two little parcels that arrived yesterday from faraway Canada and New Zealand.They are a je t'aime tea towel by Arounna and a lovely needlebook by Melissa of Tiny Happy.
 New Zealand is suffering from that awful earthquake of the day before yesterday. Christchuch suffered the most with a great toll of deaths. I am very sensitive on this subject because when I was only 12 years old back in 1978 my city Thessaloniki was hit by an awful 6.5 Richter scale earthquake that caused the death of 45 people and a lot of destruction.It is a memory I cannot ever take out of my mind.
I will close with a hopeful photo of my son reading a literature book. He doesn't usually do that so I was happy to see him read something at last.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

On strike.

Thank you all for sharing thoughts and prayers on my dear friend's dear daughter who is still in very critical condition.
Today we were on strike (teachers,state employees,shop owners,doctors,bus drivers,journalists,all kinds of workers).There have been huge demonstrations against the governement for reducing salaries.We were there.
You can follow us and do some sightseeing.
 We gathered at the Arch of Galerius or Kamara.
We were outside Saint Demetrius Church ,the Saint protector of Thessaloniki.
 We passed in front of the Ancient Forum.