Sunday, August 29, 2010

Interview with me! On Dutch Handmade!

A group of creative women in the Netherlands run the blog called Dutch Handmade. They all sell on Etsy and love to browse around the platform for Etsy sellers from The Netherlands.
One of them: Marylin Grando wanted to interview me. Such an honor. Thank you so much Marilyn!! She has asked me all kinds of things about my work, my future plans and . And I just kept on rambling of course.

This is how she introduced me:
Crafty Ladies and Gentlemen, brace yourselves! I am happy and very glad, to have again stubled upon this creative designer, Myrte de Zeeuw. [...]This week we'll ask the 'feathers off off her birds!' And luckily she is very willing to fill us in on the details of her craft. [...]Do not hesitate to visit her shop, she makes the coolest bird prints, paper goods, pillows, card sets and jewellery items.
Read the entire interview! And check out some of the other articles and creative Dutchies on there!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Mount Robson's a place to be!

And then there's another place that means something to me in Canada, starting this vacation. Mount Robson. The hummingbird incident happened there, and next to that it is a great place to sleep, raft, and eat! Mount Robson and more specifically Mount Robson Lodge , Mount Robson Whitewater Rafting and The Goat restaurant (where's that website Dave?)
To make clear how nice the cabin was at Mount Robson
Lodge I only have to show you one picture, the one of the view from the cabin:

That should be enough to convince you. But beside that, the family, The Cinnamons, running the place are really friendly. We talked to Gloria and Jody and his dad Paul, they told us loads of things about nature and the surroundings. They are truly dedicated to their guests and love Mount Robson. Jody filled me in on the fact that hummingbirds tend to fly against the window pane occasionally. His dad told us some nice places to go. The cabins are great, but you can also stay on the campsite. This is the area where you can see the Salmon jump up from the Fraser river. We saw only one because it was a little early in the season at Rearguard Falls, but a few miles south-west you can see a lot of them at Swift Creek. I just hope they monitor how tourists behave around those places. I, of course will always be a good girl. You can just sit by the water and watch the huge fish in the shallow creek. Unbelievable.

To find out just how fast and powerful the rapids are that salmon have to swim against, you can try some rafting at Mount Robson Whitewater Rafting. This was a personal victory for me, and I am proud of it, eventhough we were well looked after, it was scary in the beginning. Walking up the Stawamus Chief in Squamish had given me a panic attack on 10 meters from the top, so I was pretty nervous about rafting. I clung to a tree and that was the end of the climb for me! So what if I freak out in a boat: that's bad. Or if I panic in a boat in a rapid, oww, bad too. Or what if I panic in a boat-in a rapid-where I am expected to paddle because 6 others want to get out safely too? Worse. Luckily there was Shawn to guide 6 inexperienced tourists and Brett on call in his kayak. Cowboys ride waves in 2010. We were only a group of 6, so surely they could each save 3 people right? Shawn told us how it all worked and what to do in case of a (wo)man overboard. I listened very carefully and he was very funny about it, but still serious and professional enough to make me NOT FORGET. In the raft he told us all kinds of things about the surroundings, important places, people and of course to paddle FORWARD!!!!! Because we weren't drowning Brett had time for some moves with his kayak. The rapids were fantastic, and I could go on for hours! The rollercoaster feeling but then better, and more beautiful.
While I was calming down in between rapids with the stories Shawn told, I incidentally saw an American Dipper(check!) who has a love for rivers too. As long as tourists don't drown or act annoyingly, this must be a great job. Bruce who also made the photographs picked us all up and took us back to the lodge&campsite.
Photo courtesy Bruce from Mount Robson White Water Rafting.

The food at The Goat is wooonderful. A Dutch stomach doesn't respond well to daily fastfood, so looking for a good restaurant was always a priority. Dave, who is the owner and proprietor of The Goat does a fabulous job in making good food that is not too light for a hike( I walked up to Kinney Lake within the hour on his French Toast with Blueberries and Crumble) but not too heavy to drag yourself up the hill either. Just perfect. I like eating veggie (no, I am not a vegetarian, more a demi'tarian, I eat less meat, not every day, you know) and Crazy Dave is also Creative Dave. His meals have names like: Crazy Dave's Favorite Thing To Eat. And really, it will be worth the chance. When I wanted to order his delicious veggie burger again the second night we were dining there, he recommended the bean lasagna. A huge leap, I was afraid it might not be as delicious as the first night when I had the veggie burger. " It'll be better." he said. I was not disappointed.

Just seeing the photographs - I just know I will be back in cabin #2 one day!

Ceci ce n'est pas une dead hummingbird- thankfully!

Back from an amazing vacation in Canada! The land of lumberjacks and bears (love them both equally). And also the land where I would shop for new birds to draw! Even the most ordinary bird can make me jump up and down. Ever since my first trip to Canada I knew it is hard to find a country that has more of what I want: the sheer beauty of nature and the wild! They are so close to the normal world in Canada. Just when you think you can handle it, rafting the rivers, walking up the mountains, you realise it is so big and powerful and you feel small again.
In all this great beauty, I was fascinated by the little things. Little things with feathers that I can draw!
In Victoria I saw the first hummingbirds, but they were so high up a tree that I gave up on photographing them. In a lovely place in Mount Robson(later more on this) I saw two of them feeding on one of those sweetened water bird feeders. I jumped up and tried to photograph it, but she/he saw me of course, and took off. A couple of blurred pics as a result.

Then the day of our departure; I woke up and a hummingbird was lying on the patio of our cabin. It looked dead. Quite dead indeed, little paws up in the air, eyes shut. This wasn't going to be my hummingbird kodak moment was it?? I looked at it and wanted to check if it was still breathing. I got a teaspoon to lift it, and put it in my hand to have a good look. Suddenly it opened its little eye and there was hope! For 15 minutes I sat motionless(besides of moving to make a picture) and hoped the warmth of my hands might help him recover on that chilly morning. Then I turned it over-little feet down- because, well it seemed more comfortable to me, for the little fellow. Within seconds it opened both its eyes and carefully tested its wings, and flew off. Of course I didn't have time or the notion to photograph that because I was jumping up in the air. It flew a bit uneasy and not as fast as they can, but it went safely to a tree. Only glad it didn't get a heart attack and died on the spot anyway from seeing me when he woke up.

Say Jay...

The ShorePine Bog Trail in Tofino( Pacific Rim National Park)must be one of my favourite places on this earth. It is a boardwalk over a swampy area with pine trees. You feel like you're the only person on earth when you're there. It has a fairytale-like feeling. The first time I was there it was a bright blue sky and we heard young eagles crying for their mother. This time it was cloudy, but the bright green pine trees were radient nonetheless. We also had a good look of this Steller's Jay, that was still figuring out if it was interested in us or not. He(or she) came closer, and then he changed his mind and took a few hops back. Then we continued our hike, and it came back again. We took a few photographs, and although he was close, there was always a branch in the way. It looks like he is the gothic cousin of the blue jay. I think it is a pretty amazing bird!


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