Friday, July 25, 2014

Helgoland and The Northern Gannet

I suppose I should tell you where Helgoland is and a little info. I realized after I posted earlier photos that I forgot to mention anything about it. Call me sleep deprived!

Helgoland is located 70 kilometres off the German coastline in the North Sea and consists of two islands: the main island is about 1 km2 and the Dune  is somewhat smaller 0.7 km2, and surrounded by sand beaches. The main island is divided into the Unterland at sea level, the Oberland consisting of a plateau and the Mittelland between them on one side of the island.
Helgoland's famous landmark, The Lange Anna, is a free standing rock column, 47 metres high.
The Dune is a paradise, no one lives there and you get to it by small ferry, only about 10 minutes.

While strolling along the red cliffs on Helgoland, I could see and hear in the distance many sea birds.  What a wonderful sound it was, but unlike anything I'd heard before.  As we began to approach closer to the Lange Anna, I could see the birds nesting in the red cliffs.... now I'm getting excited and really curious!

These are not seagulls!  These are a bird called the Northern Gannet, 
I have never seen one before, and I could tell as I got closer there were little baby gannets! squweee!
Ingrid tells me that they breed here in very large numbers and the babies literally learn to fly by jumping off the cliffs toward the ocean.  There must have been thousands of these birds all along the cliffs.

So here are some of my photos of the Northern Gannet and you'll see a couple of  babies in there too!

Stayed tuned for photos from the Dune.... coming tomorrow!

Helgoland Photo Collages


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Some photo collages....

The Welcome Point in Wedel, on the Elbe, welcomes all ships coming into the Port of Hamburg.
Small and lovely old church in Blankense (Hamburg), very popular for weddings
Coffee and Cake at Jacob's

Relaxing day at the beach in Laboe

Back home....

It was a long haul home (my flight from London was cancelled, so I was stuck at Heathrow for a couple days) regardless of the difficulties in getting home, I'm back safe and sound and have had a really nice time in Germany.  Everyone there is healthy and happy and we've had some wonderful time together.  I visited some of the usual haunts, revisited places I haven't been to in 10 years and I also went on a couple of adventures to places I've never been.  Being in Germany during the FIFA world cup was great too. All the energy and anticipation leading up to and including the final game was absolutely amazing!  So much fun! I'll be sorting and posting the pictures over the next week or so.  A reminder of the yummy coffee and cake in Germany :) Bis Später!

Time for kaffee und kuchen! LOL

Sunday, July 06, 2014

Hello from Germany!

Hello everyone, having a really nice Time visiting and relaxing These First few days in Germany. The Weather has been Great, we hit 30 c today, thank goodness Ingrid and I were in Wedel on the Elbe, nice cool breeze coming up off the water so it did Not Feel too hot. I have already Settled back into Daily Life :) having a Little trouble trying to get Lars' iPad to recognize english,  it. is Auto correcting everything and capitalizing Words at random..... Sorry about that! Will post Again in a few days from the Office Computer :) bis später

Saturday, June 21, 2014

More Zentangles

I've really taken to this Zentangling.... it is so much fun and quite relaxing!  Here are some more "experiments" I've done over the past month. I'm going to take a small "kit" of Zentangle supplies with me on holiday so that I can play while on the flight and also when I'm just having some quiet time in the mornings with my java!  I hope to incorporate some Zentangles into my travel journal.

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Pack me up.....

I'm officially on countdown! The first half of this year has been very busy, I'm ready for my vacation.  My "mini vacations" have been  fabulous breaks, but alas, way too short.  I need to recharge and refill my cup.... the cup is beginning to get empty.  Time for a top up... and what better way to recharge than to pack up and head out on vacation :)

I'm officially on vacation starting Friday June 27th - "Part 1" - we're headed to Valdes for an extended Canada Day long weekend with our friends, Ann and Rob.  This is an annual trip for us and we always have great fun, good laughs, yummy food and some sort of "Adventure".  We have always come away from Valdes with some story of hilarious adventure!  I think I'll take my journal notes from past adventures and write a "Valdes Tale" it will be a comedy!!  We'll be home on July 1st - just in time for me to do laundry and pack for "Part 2"!

“A” for Adventure – "Part 2" - I’ll be on my way to Germany for my annual visit to the family in Großenaspe, on July 2nd.  

Once again I’ll be taking the overnight flight from Vancouver to London Heathrow on British Airways and then connecting at Heathrow for Hamburg Germany.  I’ve come to enjoy this particular flight, mainly because I can actually get some sleep on the plane after I’ve eaten a meal and had a nightcap. I'm traveling in the ‘new’ World Traveler Plus, this is the former Business Class section of the plane, the planes have all had major revamping and I have to say being in World Traveler Plus is really worth it! Good food & drink service, loads of room and the cabin is much more private and very comfortable for the long flights.  I also like the fact that I have a bit of time to stretch my legs and have a snack before getting on another plane.  Flying to Frankfurt is okay but the connection is way too tight and I feel like I've run a marathon by the time I get to Hamburg.

This is the first time in a couple of years that I’m going in the middle of summer, usually I travel in late August until late September. I’m hoping for some warmer weather and a chance to have a few days away on a beach at the Baltic Sea Coast. 

Katharina already plans to take me to the new Michael Kors Lifestyle store in Hamburg :) I’ll enjoy that! and as an employee at the Michael Kors Outlet store in Neumunster she get 50% off at all the stores.  Can you see my big grin!? :)

Ingrid and I are hoping to take a few days to head up to Denmark & possibly Sweden.  She has a friend in Sweden that we can visit and stay with.  If this plan doesn't work out this year, then maybe next year! but I'm sure that Ingrid and I will get up to our usual tricks and have an adventure or two.

At the same time, I'm sure that I'll be glued to some sort of big screen TV with Lars, watching the World Cup Soccer, because you all know.... I'm a fußball fan! Lars and I usually end up shouting like fanatics at the TV..... it isn't like the players can really hear us tell them how to play the game! but we do it just the same.

Andrea and I are planning a few "outings" - maybe a trip to Städe - for a lovely stroll and lunch along the river.  I really like Städe, it has that "old world" feeling about it, and the town is so easy to walk around. I haven't been to Städe in 10 years.  10 years! that's a time trigger!! I just realized.... I've been visiting the family in Germany for 13 years now. 

It will be nice to get back to Großenaspe, with its 'village' charm and slow pace.  It's no wonder the ladies at the bakery and the market recognize me and say 'hello'.... I've been there enough times!  I just slide into the usual routine of life in the 'village' - roll up my sleeves, do the work, help around the house, in the garden and generally, just carry on like I've never left the place!   I'm really looking forward to 'practicing' my German speaking - full time - no better way to practice than to throw myself back into it!  

I'm using my blog as a journal (of sorts) since I still love my paper journals and the good ol' pen, I will have a "paper edition" but recently I've been reading a few interesting books and articles about travel journaling and one thing that struck me as really cool was the idea of "Pre-Journaling". 

Pre-journaling is writing about your trip before you go. Journeys don't begin when we step off the airplane. They begin the moment we start dreaming and planning our journeys.  I've always written a journal while I'm on my adventures, but other than the planning 'file folder' full of plans, reservations, information, maps etc. I've never really thought about writing about my adventures before going on them.  So this is new for me.... 

Stay tuned, I will be posting bits and pieces of my travel journal during the trip, but also I will be Post-journaling - writing about my trip after I get back.  Be sure to stop by around the 25th of July, I'll have photos and post-journaling for you to enjoy!

Stepping out of the norm and stepping up my travel journaling skills - here I go!!!

Friday, May 30, 2014

May Photo Blogging Challenge = FUN!

Another month gone and here are my 5 photos for the May Challenge over at A 'lil HooHaa
Pop on over take a peek at what other people have done for the month May and join us for the June Challenge!

FUN weekend in Portland Oregon with mum

FUN and Funky Art in the City of Nelson, BC
FUN in the SUN - Victoria Day Long Weekend at Valdes

FUN - doesn't this statue look like it's having fun?!

FUN times at the Vancouver Whitecaps soccer match
FUN under the Big Top at Circque du Soleil

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Twirling and Whirling....

Life has been very busy - lots of stuff going on and some out of town travel too.  I have been good at keeping track of life and taking photos, but I've fallen down on getting things posted to the blog.  Actually, to be honest, I haven't had the time to post on the blog!

Here's some highlights of what's happened over the past three weeks.

Dinner with our nephew at Pied-a-Terre - one of my favorite local restaurants!
 VWMS meetings/prepping for the AGM - our last concert of the season is on June 18th

Whitecaps soccer game with Kathy - 40th Anniversary Game - it was groovey man! and loads of fun!
 Surprise Baby Shower - KM goes on mat leave on June 6th
 Portland with Mum - 4 days of  fun
Nelson BC - 3 days of work - nothing has really changed in Nelson, the scenery is still beautiful.
Valdes - rest and relaxation with the Mennies!