Tuesday 30 November 2021

A Postcard A Day - Tuesday 30 November 2021 - T for Netherlands, stamps and hot chocolate


Good morning lovely ladies! 

I've got some great cards and stamps to show you this morning. 

Here is the first one:

I have no idea where the photo on the postcard was taken. It could have been anywhere, it is so typically Dutch, with canals, waterways and draw bridges.

The theme is Holland. Holland, or more precisely the Netherlands. I know that abroad my country is generally known as Holland, but the country is called the Netherlands (Nederland in Dutch) and only the two provinces in the west of the country are called Holland.


There is a South Holland, where I was born in Rotterdam. The government meets in South Holland, in The Hague (Den Haag in Dutch). North Holland has the capital Amsterdam. 

As I'm on the subject, let me put something else straight. Some people think Dutch is the same as Deutsch. Dutch is the language spoken in the Netherlands and Deutsch is the language spoken in Germany.  Deutschland=Germany, Deutsch=German.

The stamps are lovely. They show some typical Dutch things such as cows and gable houses. The large stamp on the left is about the province of Overijssel. Coincidentally it is the province that the arrow is pointing to on the above map.

Here is a better image of this stamp:

My next card comes from the USA would you believe! It features the cover of a Ladybird book.  

It teaches children about different countries and this one is about Holland. It was published in 1971 and written by Betty Scott-Daniell. The illustrations are by John Berry.
I have not been able to find anything about the author, but John Berry is a well-known illustrator so here goes:
John Leslie Berry (9 June 1920 – 10 December 2009) was a British illustrator. He came up with the idea for the iconic Esso tiger adverts. At 19 Berry won a scholarship to the Royal Academy Schools but was unable to take it up owing to the outbreak of World War II. 
From 1941 to 1944 Berry served as an official war artist in World War II, attached to the Eighth Army in North Africa and Egypt painting battle scenes. 
Berry started his work for Ladybird in the late 1950s and between 1961 and 1978 he illustrated thirty five Ladybird books. He worked on their Key Words Reading Scheme. These included the "People at Work" series, featuring jobs such as policeman, fireman, postman, potter, nurse, coal miner, farmer and engine driver. The series forms an almost complete record of British industry as it was at the time. He also illustrated all six books in the "Hannibal the hamster" series between 1976 and 1978, and publications such as Come to France, Come to Denmark, Come to Holland and Learning to Ride. 
One day in 1951 the secretary at McCann Erickson advertising agency asked Berry if he could draw a tiger for the Esso oil company account. "Yes, put a tiger in your tank," Berry retorted. For the next 10 years he continued to draw tigers for the campaign, but he made only a flat fee of £25 for the famous slogan, a story he much enjoyed telling. 

Berry was also commissioned to do portraits of Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip, Lady Astor, Diana, Princess of Wales (twice), George Bush Sr., His Highness Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahayan, Ruler of Abu Dhabi and President of the United Arab Emirates and many prominent people including American Indians.

I have no picture of him. Strangely enough I have not even been able to find a self portrait. (Perhaps he never did one).

 This book is probably the reason why so many people outside the Netherlands think we all dress like this. No, we don't. This is the dress of one particular little village called Volendam. (Which is now a tourist attraction).


And this:

Eventually became this:

The stamps are stunning!

 On the left is  the oil-on-canvas mural “Sugarloaf Mountain”

 which was painted for Rockville, Maryland’s old post office, which is now a police station. The artist was Judson Smith.

The second stamp has the image of a tiger and is from the series: Save vanishing species.

On September 20, 2011, the U.S. Postal Service started selling the stamp. It's image features a beautiful Amur tiger cub, and was designed by Nancy Stahl. The price of the stamp marginally exceeds the cost of first class postage.
More formally known as the Save Vanishing Species Stamp, a portion of every Tiger Stamp that is purchased helps to fund conservation projects around the world. To date, 99 projects in 35 countries have been funded to help protect these beloved, yet highly threatened species.

The third one is close to my heart as it is a nurse stamp:;

US Postage Stamp Single 1961 Nursing Issue 4 Cents 

The stamp on the right features Clara Maass.

Clara Louise Maass (June 28, 1876 – August 24, 1901) was an American nurse who died as a result of volunteering for medical experiments to study yellow fever.

In April 1898, during the Spanish–American War, Maass volunteered as a contract nurse for the United States Army (the Army Nurse Corps did not yet exist). She served with the Seventh U.S. Army Corps from October 1, 1898, to February 5, 1899. She was discharged in 1899, but volunteered again to serve with the Eighth U.S. Army Corps in the Philippines from November 1899 to mid-1900.[5]

During her service with the military, she saw few battle injuries. Instead, most of her nursing duties came in providing medical aid to soldiers suffering from infectious diseases like typhoidmalariadengue and yellow fever. She contracted dengue in Manila, and was sent home.

Shortly after finishing her second assignment with the army, Maass returned to Cuba in October 1900 after being summoned by William Gorgas, who was working with the U.S. Army's Yellow Fever Commission. The commission, headed by Major Walter Reed, was established during the post-war occupation of Cuba in order to investigate yellow fever, which was endemic in Cuba. One of the commission's goals was to determine how the disease was spread: by mosquito bites or by contact with contaminated objects.

The commission recruited human subjects because they did not know of any animals that could contract yellow fever. In the first recorded instance of informed consent in human experiments, volunteers were told that participation in the studies might cause their deaths. As an incentive, volunteers were paid US$100 (approximately $3,000 today), with an additional $100 if the volunteer became ill.[5]

In March 1901, Maass volunteered to be bitten by a Culex fasciata mosquito (now called Aedes aegypti) that had been allowed to feed on yellow fever patients. By this time, the researchers were certain that mosquitoes were the route of transmission, but lacked the scientific evidence to prove it because some volunteers who were bitten remained healthy. Maass continued to volunteer for experiments.

On August 14, 1901, Maass allowed herself to be bitten by infected mosquitoes for the second time. Researchers were hoping to show that her earlier case of yellow fever was sufficient to immunize her against the disease. Unfortunately, this was not the case. Maass once again became ill with yellow fever on August 18 and died on August 24. Her death roused public sentiment and put an end to yellow fever experiments on human beings.

It is right that she is honoured and that human subject research is now highly regulated. Human subject research legislation in the United States can be traced to the early 20th century. Human subject research in the United States was mostly unregulated until the 20th century, as it was throughout the world, until the establishment of various governmental and professional regulations and codes of ethics. Notable – and in some cases, notorious – human subject experiments performed in the US include the Tuskegee syphilis experimenthuman radiation experiments, the Milgram obedience experiment and Stanford prison experiments and Project MKULTRA. With growing public awareness of such experimentation, and the evolution of professional ethical standards, such research became regulated by various legislation, most notably, those that introduced and then empowered the institutional review boards.

Today I am joining the T-Party hosted by Bluebeard and Elizabeth. To be able to participate I need an image of a beverage. So let me show you the churros con chocolate we had on Sunday. People often have those for breakfast on a Sunday, and our pastor suggested we have breakfast together at church. He would bring the churros and members of the congregation brought the hot chocolate and coffee.
The churros is dipped in the hot chocolate. Yum!

Here we have a whole bag of them, warm and fresh from the café on the corner.

They soon disappeared.

This is how they are made:

Home-made churros are piped into hot oil. 
But the street vendors (and cafes) have a 'tap' extruder which turns round and the churros get cooked in the shape of a spiral.

When it is cooked, they take a pair of scissors and cut them into bits.

Then all you need to do is dip them in hot chocolate, which here in Spain is slightly thicker than in England.

That was it for today. I had some book reviews lined up, but I think I will leave those for next week.

Have a lovely week,

Take care and keep smiling,



Friday 26 November 2021

A Postcard A Day - Friday 26 November 2021 - Friday Smiles


Hello lovely ladies! Here we are again to share our smiles and silver linings.

Lets start with one of my smiles, a nice postcard:

I belong to a 'club' called Postcrossing. It's an online postcard exchange group with more than half a million participants all around the world. Some countries issue stamps especially for Postcrossing as it is very popular. The above postcard comes from Guernsey and below are two stamps with 'Happy Postcrossing' on them. How cool is that!

Guernsey has a special place in my heart as my husband comes from Guernsey. He was born a Sarnian, as people from Guernsey are called. Apparently the Romans called the island Sarnia.

Last Thursday I hadn't done my collage when I was writing my Friday post, so here it is. As you can see the weather has turned and it is cold and rainy. Just the sort of day to do jobs like changing over the wardrobe from summer to winter.

In the afternoon my friend Antonia and I braved the weather and went for a walk to clear the cobwebs as they say. On the way back she treated me to a cup of tea at the cafe.

When I went to the gym on Friday morning, we were shown into a smaller side room as the main hall was being prepared for a youth event.
On Thursday we had gone into town to buy some baskets for my new book case, but they didn't have white ones. I chose some different colours and I think it looks really nice this way. Now all I need to do is make some labels to put over the existing one to tell me what is where.

Saturday was an indoor day too as it rained almost all day.

Sunday it rained even more and we had a record 12 litres per sq metre! In the evening we went to a local worship group to sing our hearts out.
Monday was our 29th wedding anniversary. We didn't do anything special but I did cook hubby his favorite meal: Toad-in-the-hole. His pain is increasing so I went to the family doctor to get a prescription for something stronger. And then after lunch we went food shopping. Nothing exciting about that.
On Tuesday we went out for lunch to celebrate our wedding anniversary. I had grilled chicken breast and hubby had ham, egg and chips. The latter is not on any Spanish menu but this is our regular restaurant and they always make it especially for him.
Our neighbour got bitten by three dogs who attacked him. He had rescued these dogs and was feeding them when they got aggressive and attacked him. So he had to go the the health center and get some injections and antibiotics.

On Wednesday the sun shone again, but I spent the day indoors as I had the accounts to do. (I am treasurer of the photo club and the accounts have to be done by Saturday. All done now!
I had my booster vaccination a couple of days ago plus a vaccin against pneumonia. I was feeling a bit 'icky', and slightly nauseous, so we just had pasta with butter and parmesan cheese for dinner. (I just assume it was as a result of the vaccination. I feel fine now).
Our friends usually come on Wednesday, but they needed to go to do some official business in town on Thursday and I came with them to do some translating. It all went well and we had some coffee at a café that in the summer has an enormous terrace with lots of people outside. Now it looks rather bleak. But the coffee tasted just the same.
They spent the rest of the day at our house and I roasted that enormous parsnip together with some potatoes in the oven for dinner.

That was my week. How was yours? I'm going to join Annie at A Stitch In Time. Please join us with your smiles.
Have a lovely weekend,
Keep smiling!

Tuesday 23 November 2021

A Postcard A day - Tuesday 23 November 2021 - T for seafood, anniversary and rainbows

 Hello my lovely ladies,

How are you all? 

I have another postcard for you. This one comes from China:

It reads:" A Bite From China - Greetings from a country with delicacies"
I can see seafood, parsley and lots of chilli peppers.

The stamps are spectacular!

The one on the left is from a series from 2017 of children playing. Here is a better picture:
The one in the middle is from a series of the Cantonese Opera:
Here is a bigger image:
The stamp on the right is clearly from the 2011 Expo in Xian. 

This is what the International Horticultural Expo looked like in 2011:
The design looks very spectacular, and it looks like a visitor should be able to walk without problems as the place looks enormous.
I think I read somewhere that the building sticking out into the water, are laboratories.
Here they are from the other side.

 Look at all those people!

Now for something different. Hubby and I are celebrating our 29th wedding anniversary! I'm writing this on the Monday the 22nd and we have just had a drink. But did I take a picture? No!
We had alcohol free gin and tonics. I can show you the bottle (but we've finished our drinks )
I found some photo from our wedding day back then. This is me I pinning the flower on my sister's jacket:

And here are the happy bride and groom.
I married in a turquoise outfit. I thought it was beautiful back then, and looking at it, I still do. 

I'm trying not to put too much food on my blog as many of you get very hungry looking at all the meals. But this is yesterday's lunch. Good ol' Full English Breakfast! Bacon and eggs on toast with tomatoes and baked beans. We normally leave out the sausages.

Hubby cooked it for me. He's very good at doing this type of thing.

He's a good man! He's a keeper! Here he is with the Anniversary card from his sister.

We've had three days of rain, that is very unusual in our arid climate. So people are rejoicing!
This meant we had 12 litres/sq meter in the preceding 24 hours.

When we went shopping this afternoon it had stopped raining where we were, but obviously somewhere else it was still raining and a beautiful rainbow was visible all the way to the store.

I have a Christmas cactus that nearly died. But it is now in a place it likes, and it has picked up. Yesterday I spotted a bud!

I found this on the internet:

And mine is this shape:

So it must be a Thanksgiving cactus!

This is all from me today. I will be joining the T-Party hosted by Elizabeth and Bluebeard. My qualifiers are the gin bottles and the wine with our lunch.

Happy T-Day to all,
Keep smiling,