This Easter weekend we’ve been visiting friends, learning to knit and eating lots of goodies. But I did get a lot done as well here at home. Come in for a peek of my sewing studio, which has had a Spring cleaning and has been reorganized.
Wow, it has been a really long time since I last blogged. I haven’t touched my blog since the end of May. Yikes. Half a year has passed, so what have I been up to? Well first the good part: a lot of holidays, some short long weekends and this last one in November was a long one to Bermuda.
Jungfraujoch, Bern and Bern city
Lauenen & Gstaad
And last but not least, my island paradise:
Quilter’s Block: I was blocked. Maybe you are a quilter or maybe you’ve experienced this phenomena in another creative area of your life. It was not nice. From the time I finished all my quilt group responsibilities in May until the time I cancelled an Australian magazine project I was working on, but not making any progress, I was blocked, completely unable to get anything quilty done.
It wasn’t until June or July that I started preparing my fabric again to make a completely different quilt. I decided on something easy. Beginner easy. I was so convinced I didn’t have it in me to do anything more complicated: squares, no boarders, checker board pattern. But it was the fabric that saved the quilt, the fabric that brought me slowly back to life again, back to my quilting.
I must say I am not my 100% quilting maniac self again, however, but I am getting there. I had a breakthrough this week. The kind of breakthrough which sends you back into quilty heaven, dreaming of your next project. I had just dragged out one of my quilts to curl up with on the sofa. I was trying to do my husband a favor and not curl up with his flannel quilt which is just so tempting at this time of year.
So I had just spread out the quilt over me, curling up in front of the TV to watch another Christmas Hallmark movie (yes I know cheesy-but I love them), when suddenly I began to admire my quilt. It is my best quilt, #4, the Granny Squares Quilt. Such a classic pattern. I love how it is so simple and yet with the fabrics I chose, looks classic, almost antique. I also am extremely proud of the hand quilting (I am not much of a machine quilter). But what stole my attention was the fabric. For a moment I couldn’t believe I made this quilt. It was just perfect and each little piece telling a story of who I am, as a quilter at least. Sure, some of the fabric, some may say, doesn’t really go together. But you don’t notice it much when you look at the quilt as a whole. Oh just talking about it makes me want to open my fabric drawers right now and start planning my next project. Organizing them is more what I need to do.
I am sorry I don’t have anything more for you at the moment to share but at least this one picture of the fabric for the quilt I am hand quilting. I will write and share more on that in a future post.
Ok the two modern prints, the wordy one and Kaffe Fasset print I took out.
Anyway I hope you enjoyed this post, the unedited version. Please let me know what you are up to creatively, I love hearing from readers.
Gorgeous weather was forcasted on Thursday and so my friend and I, having not ventured from our little village, for one of our road trips, decided it was time to get in the car and drive. Two hours later we found ourselves at the quilt shop I wrote about in my previous post, read about it here.
As I had travelled to the quilt shop before with my parents for a few days, I knew where to go as soon as our stomachs started to rumble.
Just up the street from my quilt shop, a short walk, is the border to Germany, where we originally drove from in order to get here. (Driving through Basel is only a headache, this way was much more peaceful).
The Hotel Krone in Inzlingen is a small, road side, business hotel, on the same street as the quilt shop. It is a little ‘Geheimtip’ (‘secret tip’ in German). One I want to share a little with you.
As always it’s beautifully decorated restaurant was a pleasure to the exhausted traveller.
I will have to dig up the old photos for a proper post of the hotel, for another time.
3 Course Menu at The Krone (35 EUR)
Trying to stay seasonal I opted for the Asparagus Tiramisu, which was a cold mousse on bread.
Very sensitive to non asparagus eaters palate. Lovely presentation.
My main course was devine saltiamboca with a light beef sauce served with plain risotto and ratatouille. Pure Divinity, let me say.
Mrs. K’s main course was fish
I had a taste and that was delicious enough for even the pickiest of eaters. Simple but just melt in your mouth goodness, that was served on a bed of lovely ‘al dente’ cucumber (for lack of a better description).
As the meal, was more than adequate for lunchtime fare, the simple dessert was just the thing to send us on our way on the long drive home, happily satiated.
Rhubarb Sorbet with strawberries that had been soaked in something delicious.
Inzlingen itself is another little recommendation of mine, as it makes a great, affordable base if you are visiting Basel. It is a small town nestled in a narrow little valley North East of the center of Basel. It has an interesting past linking Basel and this little German town, but not much is available in English, you can however access the link on Wikipedia here. If you know German than this link will fill you in on it’s past here.
As I did with my parents, we stopped at moated castle, which lies at the center of this sleepy little village.
At the entrance to this open park is the explanation of the history of the little village and castle.
The views were simply stunning, click on the photos to enlarge.
Along the brook that flows into the pond surrounding the castle, we were able to go Kneipping.
Kneipping is a type of water therapy which includes walking barefoot in cold water. This kind of therapy was discovered by Sebastian Kneipp a German priest from Bayern. This therapy is used to tread various ailments including, circulation issues as well as Bronchitis. You can read more on this medicinal treatment here.
For my friend and I we just needed a little adventure and a bit of a wake up before the long drive home.
After completing our walk along the easy path along the pond, we checked out the castles inner courtyard.
Inside the castle walls was a lovely little jewel. A restaurant and the city hall leading off of the beautifully peaceful courtyard.
I couldn’t help but wish I never had to leave. Wouldn’t this make a great location for a retreat?
But alas, it was time to go and end our little excursion to Riehen, Basel (CH) and Inzlingen (DE).
Well we hope you enjoyed our little visit to Inzlingen. If you have any questions or comments I would love to hear from you. I wish you a great rest of the weekend. And lots of Creative Inspiration throughout next week.
At the beginning of the week when the calendar switched over to March, I was like woo hoo! So excited!
It was snowing and the world was good. I have been doing a lot this week, especially with my blog, making some physical changes to it, as you can probably see if you are not reading this in a reader.
I have been working on various posts, but they still need tweaking, so this week I decided to revisit one of my feature posts, well it can’t really be called a feature if there is such little writing, but in any case it is one of my favorite as I get to share with you my photos of the things that have been inspiring me, whether they are as insignificant as the snow flakes falling from the sky, as they are doing right now in my cozy little corner of Switzerland, or what is blooming in my garden right now.
I spend so much time of my day photographing the most ‘trivial’ of objects. Though I don’t know if I like what that word connotes. For me these are objects of my daily life, and are anything but “of little value or importance”. They are elements of my day, which bring a smile to my face and joy to my life. They make me feel happy to be who I am, content in where I am, and excited about where I am going.
So with no further ado, I give you My Creative Inspiration for the week of March 1-6.
This week I will not be adding any commentary on the photos, they are for your interpretation. But just for your information, the locations of the photos are as follows: the Church is in my sweet little village center, and the other photos are either at home, where I was most of the week, or in Zurich, where I made a quick visit to on Thursday.
Please, if you have enjoyed this post, or have any questions or comments for me (even constructive criticism), I would greatly appreciate hearing from you.
On this I leave you and wish you a peaceful Sunday!
P.S. The photos were taken on two different sized mobile devices, hence the difference in size.
Zermatt, is a popular tourist destination located in the Southern Swiss Canton of Valais. Tourists, skiers, hikers, and mountain climbers all flock to this region to experience its main attraction: the iconic, pyramid shaped mountain peak, known as “The Matterhorn”, which towers over this little town.
At 4, 478 Meters above sea level (14, 692 feet) the Matterhorn is just the icing on the cake of this region which prides itself on having 38 mountain peaks at 4000 meters above sea level or higher.
With this year being the 150th Anniversary since the Matterhorn was first climbed by the British Alpinist and his team in July 1865, there has been a lot of publicity, including documentaries on the event, which my husband and I watched with interest. So it didn’t come as a complete surprise when my husband mentioned his wish to make a detour to Zermatt on our way to our annual country music event, which is held each year in Gstaad, in canton Bern.
With my loyalty to the mountains of Graubünden, I was a bit reluctant to go somewhere which seemed so stereotypical, and so popular with the jet set. But nevertheless, I gave in.
Arriving in Zermatt in the early afternoon, we decided to check out one of the main tourist attractions, the Gornergrat Bahn which would provide us with one of the best views of the Matterhorn. Although it cost a pretty penny at 86.00 SFR round trip, we were lucky to get a rebate using our ½ fare card so we only spent 43.00 SFR each.
The Gornergrat Bahn railway is a cog railway train which takes you on a half hour trip up the mountain, giving you many opportunities to view the beautiful Matterhorn, or its neighboring mountains. Although you can get out at various stops to hike or have a meal, Yves and I travelled all the way to the top, getting out at the the Gornergrat station.
From there we enjoyed a nice late afternoon meal and a cup of tea, before venturing out into the cold and up onto the observation platform at the top of the Gornergrat mountain which lies at 3131 meters above sea level.
The view of the “Gorner-” glacier and the “Grenz-” glacier as well as the “Monte Rosa-” glacier, were among my favorites (see above). The weather was sunny with cloud, but on a clear day, there are apparently 29 mountain peaks above 4000 meters that can be seen.
Unfortunately I did not bring my Nikon camera on this trip, but I was able to get a number of decent shots using my tablet and smart phone.
We spent an enjoyable afternoon soaking up the mountain views and sunshine before deciding it was time for the return journey down the mountain. Down in Zermatt, we were keen on a little sightseeing and eager to find somewhere for dinner which we would need soon enough.
Cars are not allowed in Zermatt and so these little hotel electric mini buses together with a public bus line are the only form of transport, beside push bikes which are available to tourists in Zermatt. Of course, after the long drive across Switzerland, we were quite happy to walk. It is of course quite idyllic.
As a popular destination for both winter and summer sports, a quick tour of Zermatt, proved that I wouldn’t be doing all that much shopping. Sure there was the sports clothing and supplies stores and tourist shops but aside from that there was just a lot of hotels, bars and restaurants and the odd museum.
At last, we found a lovely restaurant in the basement of Romantik Hotel Julen, called Restaurant Schäferstube (translated roughly as Shepherds Den). As it is a tradition in Valais, we tried the Raclette, a meal of melted cheese over potatoes. In Valais, they melt the entire cheese wheel over a fire and scoop out the melted cheese as they go, which they also did in this restaurant. The restaurant was so lovely that before we left, we booked dinner for the following night.
For information on attractions and restaurants mentioned in this post you can click on the links below:
I hope you enjoyed this post!
Gorgeous weather this weekend, meant time spent outdoors, was a definite must. Despite a pretty full schedule, we knew we needed to get back to one of our favorite hobbies: hiking. We decided to head on over to Appenzell, a mountain located near the train station, Jakobsbad, which lies south west of the canton’s capital of Appenzell, between there and Urnäsch.
The Kronberg mountain, is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike, both young and old, offering a number of recreation options year round.
On this end of August, Saturday, it was booming with young families, enjoying the rope park, play area and lining up to take an alpine ‘coaster’ ride.
For those wanting a more physically involved way to spend their day, hiking paths were, as anywhere in Appenzell, abundant. There is even a ‘barefoot hike’ along the brook and meadows going over to Gontenbad.
Of course my Countryboy was only interested in altitude, so getting in the Cable Car, we set our sights on the Kronberg, which lies only 1663 metres above sea level. Unfortunately, as we were just starting our day we couldn’t stop at the restaurant.
But I will admit it is a great place to start or end a hike, with a fantastic view. On a clearer day, I am sure you would have a great view of Lake Constance (Der Bodensee).
The Säntis mountain, the highest in the Alpstein Mountain Range here in our local, Eastern Switzerland, area seemed only a short hike away, but I knew better.
We opted for a ‘gentler’ approach back down into the valley, though my knees and thighs wouldn’t agree as I sit here this morning in pain.
Pain aside, I must say it was a pleasingly scenic hike, with lots of beautiful alpine flora, such as these silver thistles.
On our way we passed a number of alpine farmhouses and barns, where the local farmers keep their animals throughout the warm months, taking advantage of the alpine grazing. I like to think of it as holidays for the cows, their summer house, so to speak.
The house above had the most lovely little porch full of geraniums, but unfortunately, it’s watch dog wouldn’t permit me to get a better picture.
Finally we could spot the end of our journey as this lovely monastery came into view with a beautiful garden.
With a number of little breaks for photos and drinks on this hot day, our hike took us roughly 3 1/2 hours. It was certainly a great way to experience Appenzell.
If you would like further information on this destination you can visit the Kronberg website which is both in English and German here.
For tourism information on the Appenzell region in general, you can visit the tourism boards website here which is available in German, English and French.
Please let me know if you have any questions or comments and have a great Sunday!
The reason is, that we have had such a fantastic Spring here in Switzerland.
After a long rainy period, followed by weeks of sunshine and mild weather, everything is lush and pumped with rich, vibrant colors. Perfect for indulging in my passion for photography.
So in today’s post, I thought I would focus my photographic images around the topic of color.
As a quilter, color plays a significant roll in the creative decisions that need to be made throughout the quilt making process.
Not only would understanding color and color theory, greatly enhance my creative process but it would aide in my quilt making. It would help me to choose quilt designs, quilting patterns, fabrics and to determine pleasing layouts .
So over the next month or so I will be trying to focus my quilting and crafting around this subject .
This post in My Creative Inspiration series will hopefully be a nice introduction to the subject of color. For those of you who may not have previously seen your surroundings, in terms of color, I hope this inspires you to do so; to look at your world as a rainbow of different colors, made up of an array of different shades, hues and tints.
Whether you are an artist or a ‘creative’ type , or just you, a reader, I would love to hear from you on your ideas about color and how it plays a role in your creative life.
But first, I will share with you my own personal encounters with the images that have made me think about color this week.
I hope you enjoyed my little wanderings, around Mörschwil, in canton St. Gallen and Teufen in canton Appenzell located in Eastern Switzerland.
Hope you join me next week for another journey in my little Home Sweet Dreaming world.
Wishing you a very colorful day!
P.S. If you would like to have any information on the photos I have taken here for this post, please ask. I have already made a lot of comments on many of these images on FB and Instagram and do not want to overload anyone!
Last weekend I had a friend visiting from Zurich. When we started, the weather wasn’t great for anything major, but good enough for a ‘quick’ walk.
Now if you are using my husband’s definition of a ‘quick walk’, you will find that this only extends to the perimeter of the neighborhood, so maybe if you walk the furthest paths and do a bit of double backing, it might amount to a 20 minute walk.
For me, a ‘quick walk’ is usually anything over 30 minutes and under an hour.
You can get an idea of the location here using google maps. The route shown is just to give you an idea, as we took a few detours before ending up on the Rheintaler Höhenweg, a panorama path that looks over the Rhein valley; click here for maps and information in English. The panorama hiking path looks East to Austria and south to canton Graubünden, which is why I go. I love Graubünden.
From where I live, Berneck is the closest little jewel in the Rhein valley’s crown and it is the closest place in the valley offering a stunning view of snow covered mountains (Austria, Lichtenstein, and depending on the visibility in the alps, canton Graubünden).
The photograph above was taken from the Rheintaler Höhenweg and looks down to our final destination, a little Besenbeiz , which is what the Swiss call a gastro-pub which is located in a wine area and sells locally grown food and wine. At least this is what I was able to gather from the translation / encyclopedia entry on Wikipedia.
For further information on the town of Berneck, in St. Gallen, Eastern Switzerland, you can go to my previous post on the wine region here or go to the town website (German).
I hope you enjoyed this little dip into Swiss culture and travel.
Please let me know if you have any questions or comments, and I will be happy to answer them.
Have a great day,
This winter, I have been avoiding any personal, fun purchases. You know, buying stuff -just because. This meant I haven’t been out gallivanting too much, so no road trips to any cute little places that might inspire me into spending money.
I am still very much in this mindset, but yesterday, my friend was visiting and we drove down to Berneck, St. Gallen for a nice walk amongst the vineyards and surrounding mountains of the Rhein valley.
We weren’t planning to do any shopping, except maybe some very quick window shopping in Berneck. But on the way, we passed the town of Au, where I wanted to start our walk to Berneck. Now Au, is simply a border town, the gateway to Eastern Europe from my side of Switzerland, and the border to Austria’s Vorarlberg area.
There are just homes and some businesses, nothing worth blinking at with regards to shopping, let alone, spending a lazy half hour or more. Or so I thought.
It started with this Potter’s, Töpferstube.
It looked like it had some bright and colorful pieces, just like what I thought my friend might like. I have been wanting to try a pottery course for ages as I love collecting different pieces of ceramic and porcelain and want to make my own designs. So this seemed like a great place to pop into before starting our walk.
Well we weren’t disappointed, the shop owner was very friendly and had some very pretty pieces on sale, as well as little decorations to hang which one could paint oneself. I was particularly taken by some utilitarian pieces, which were very traditional and yet something I had yet to see here in Switzerland, the perfect breakfast pieces, blue and white and chunky- sturdy. (I will send my husband back for my yearly mug gift.) Mrs. Müller also offered courses, which I may just check out.
After we walked out of the store, we were greeted by the tantalizing view of yet another interesting looking store.
With all the flowers outside, I mistook it for a flower shop and thought it was a pretty safe bet that I could resist any temptations to buy.
But I was wrong. Oh so wrong!
I fell in love with this fancy geranium, but nevertheless, resisted the temptation to purchase it.
Though I guess the bottom would rust after a while. I love the herbs one, this is how I had mine, before it became an eyesore in my garden.
Coming to this store was just an overload for my visual sensory organ and such inspiration.
While outside was a treat, inside this little store , querbeet -Flor and Glor made me feel at home, and reminded me of all the things I love: like little boutiques, antiques and home decor items.
What was inside was not your typical Swiss florist. No, it was actually a boutique selling specialty gifts such as foodie gifts like fancy balsamic vinegar, and chutney and chili sauces from Stonewall Kitchen. I immediately felt transported to trendy big city like Boston or Seattle, where these quirky little shops abound.
What I most loved of course was the upcycled furniture and picture frames, as well as some quirky antiques and big-stitch quilts.
What made it even better was that my friend was almost as excited as me, and she lives in Zurich, and so has access to cute little shops like this one.
I hope to show you what I bought at querbeet -Flor and Glor soon, so stay tuned!
Now, the sun is out and my garden is calling, so until next time, I wish you all a great Sunday!