Monday, July 30, 2007

Sun in the lilies

Yes, the title is right. Can't see the sun outside, as so often here in North Germany in this so-called summer. But for luck I have my photos. This weather sometimes provides very special light situations, when one sun-ray hits something. And when it it something beautiful like the lilies in my garden I run to get my camera.

Even more for luck we don't have this pouring rain like in England, where the people are suffering from flood-like sutuations nor do we have the heat and dryness from southern Europe, where people are suffering from that and the fires taking place in the dryness.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Auspicious shell

After quite a while a post for the Bead Journal Project.
My theme for July was already fixed, when I enrolled. Since 1,5 year ago I knew that this July I would travel to Hamburg ;-) for the teaching of H.H. the Dalai Lama.
Finally during the last days I developed a plan of what to bead. As long as it took getting an idea and thinking it through as long it might take to learning how to do it.
First I will tell you about it and if you have any hints I would appreciate them.

Remember my overall topic are bracelets for each month. I will take the golden ribbon from my entrance pass that was hanging from my neck for the week. In the middle I will stich one of the 8 auspicious symbols of the Tibetean buddhism, namely the conch. More about that in another post. I liked very much the design of it, a wonderful modern translation of a very old sign.
The brownish-red outline I will bead. The holography in the middle I will try to embroider. Since I'm a beginner in both techniques it will be kind of a trial for me.
Because I want some of the golden ribbon to show I will only stitch some lines of a opal white on the sides.
I have to figure out quite a bit, mainly the design and than how to transfer it onto the ribbon.

Hopefully I get around doing that and the beginning of the beading and stitching. End of the week I will travel for mountaineering and bicycling. My hands will be too cragged for such a delicate work so I won't bother taking it with me.
I'm already way past schedule and decided that the main part is getting the idea and design fixed for the month.
Today television is showing 5 hours of the public speech the Dalai Lama was giving in Southern Germany today and some documentations. I have recorded them, so I can watch and listen during working on the braclet on the long winter evenings (well, among 1000 other things I plan for them *lol*).

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Thubten Chodron in the evening

Each day after the teaching of Dalai Lama there are other programms to go to.
Today I went to the talk of Thubten Chodron, an American buddhist nun. What a lively speech, what an inspiring person. This lady really draws ones attention into her talking.

Dealing with anger - who does not know the situations where one is annoyed, frustrated, even furious.
I can't write down all the explanations for anger and all the remedies she was mentioning. The most important is contemplating about impermanence (everything is changing every moment). This prevents from exaggerated expectations and attachment.

As I found out Thubten Chodron has an expanded homepage. Have a look for yourself if you want to read more: Thubten Chodrons homepage

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Dalai Lama in Hamburg

His Holiness the Dalai Lama is in Hamburg.
What an honor, what a pleasure!

I've first met him in December 1994 in Dharamsala, where he and the Tibetan people are living in exil. In 1998 he was teaching for a whole week only 25 km away from my home in a tent village build for 10 000 visitors on a former army area. Very special.
This time his teachings are taking place right in the middle of Hamburg in a huge stadion.

He is a untellable wise man and very gentle. His humour is contagious.

Saturday was the starting day of the big event. Although buddhisms is amongst other things about a steady calm mind I was very nervous and very much looking forward toward the event. Thousands of people were moving into the stadion.
Exitment was in the air.

The stadion was packed. My girlfriend and I had fantastic seats with a good view to His Holiness and an overview of everything.

The Dalai Lama was speaking on the psychology of the mind, of global responsibility, of the importance of dialogue to prevent fight and violence, of peace among neighbours, of global peace.
The dialogue between the different religions of the world is very important and their mutual acceptance.

Compassion is the basis for everything.

During those 2 days there were people invited on the podium who are working in projects for peace and human relationsship.

Five days of buddhist teaching will follow from Monday on.

***tashi delek*** (the tibetean greeting :-) )

You can see more and professional done pictures for expemple in these newspapers:
"Spiegel" and "Welt"

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Colors, blogging, crafting and vacations

I love colors and I love crafting materials, especially fabric, beads, yarn .......
Since my vacation started (and this year I'm for once not travelling big style) I indulge in the above mentioned. :-)
Besides working in my home office, filing for school, making up the so long neglected house and garden, practicing yoga, watching Le Tour de France and some reading I'm crafting every day. What a good feeling!
I'm sure I won't and can't go on in this speed with crafting, taking pictures and blogging, but well, as long as it last I will enjoy it. Already Friday my programm is changing. For 8 days I will go to Hamburg everyday for the teachings of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and some of the events around that.

During my last christmas vacations I got the idea of sewing a bathroom carpet and a runner for covering the washing maschine. Oh well, I ended up with a rug vom Ikea, at least in one of my favorite colors - turquoise.
Yesterday the do-it-now virus hit me, I dashed into my in winter purchased fabrics and was ready with the decision after only 1 minute. You can see my draft lay-out at my flickr.
Telly-time was used for sewing. Tour de France is so very nice to watch because I know quite a bit of the meters they are showing. I just hate this doping and originally promised myself not to watch. But oh well, watching the TdF after the termpapers are done is equal for me with letting go and starting to relax, normally with a very nice nap while the drivers are doing the work.

---Notes to myself (sewing):---

----right----..................................................................... ----wrong----

Press the seam allowance to one side and the allowance of the second strip to the other side.
Put them under the foot of the sewing maching so that the facing-down seam allowing is directed to you, meaning being in sewing direction. Because it is hard to control you might end up with the mistake from the picture on the right, if you do it opposite way.
It's much easier not getting it caught if the "wrong-running" seam allowance is on top.
The left picture shows the tidy corner.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Google blogger - changing template

Using the template "Minima" a lot of space on the monitor is lost. The very short lines are not good to read.
Finally today I managed to change the width of the posting part. I like it better this way. Hopefully my readers do so too.

Dashboard → Template → Edit HTML
→ change outer wrapper width from 660 to 880 pixel
→ change main wrapper width from 410 to 610 pixel

Get more space for the actual blogging area
→ change outer wrapper width to 990 pixel (done 2009-05-05)

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Summer also in Hamburg *yeah*

I know that there is too much heat and dryness in South Europe, the States and other parts in the world, but here in Northern Germany we are so pleased to have the sun back.
Quick make-up of the too wet garden, putting on very light clothes, smiles on the faces and enjoying summer life.

My flower of today shows the butterfly tree (with bee) which the parents of my 4th-graders gave me last week as a thank-you at the goodby-party. After 4th-grade kids are splitting into different schools. The idea behind is that I sent the students in the world after teaching them the basics. Each butterfly nipping on this tree should remind me of the kids. What a thoughtful, enjoyable present!

As if to answer Sunnis question: Shortly after I read the comment this fantastic peacock butterfly landed next to his silky companion. :-)
The butterfly tree has its German name, because it attrackts butterflys. Yes, it does! There are more around in my garden than in many years.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Flowers 2

It is and it has been raining cats and dogs for weeks. Everything is wet. My shoes and the seams of my pants suffer and the flowers in the gardens here in the wood are invaded by slugs.
My neighbour gave me this beautiful bouquet yesterday. She picked those on her field where there is more light. They are really cheering one up. :-)

Thursday, July 12, 2007


This is what kept me busy all last evenings after those crazy days of the last school weeks. My 6th graders to whom I teach basic sewing skills mended together the little squares in the middle. Motivation was that their class teacher was very pregnant. I had to do the rest and since the class is leaving it had to be done before summer vacations. It was a great surprise for their former teacher who visited her students on their last day. Unfortunately without the by now not so little baby, but she was so very happy. What I did not know was that she wanted a patchwork cover but could not find one. I have to tell you American readers, that quilting is not a German tradition as in the US. We do have it as a craft, but we don't use blankets etc. for sleeping, but duvets filled with feathers or other stuff.

It is almost my first quilt ever. I know it's not perfect, but my aim was to get it done without getting lost in instruction books and to get it done now. What a satisfaction to finally doing something and finishing. I really liked it, even more now that the presentee is so happy with it. Of course for the students it was a very good experience also.

School's out

It's my first day of vacation and I even don't have time to go on with this post to show what's inside.
Have to be back in school in an hour, just realized the time and got to rush.
::::to be continued::::

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Flowers 1

No beading, no blogging.
Instead end-of-the-workyear-activities, prep for the next, a bit of other craft and summer parties. Dress code for the last is warm sweaters and closed shoes. We have fall weather with rain, rain, storm and rain. Yak! No sitting in my nice garden. I'm growing webbed feet! (thanks for the phrase , LML
;-) )
If you want to you can notice the moss under the flowers.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Switzerland 1

This is a photo I took during my last visit to Switzerland this May.
Switzerland has always been one of the places in the world where I wanted to live - but never managed to. I was pretty close living in Zurich (of what a dream!) for a year in 2002/2003, but could not stay due mostly to reasons of my profession and the need of making money.
I was so sad to leave I hardly could return for the vacations I normally spent there, e.g. for ski-mountaineering.
All of a sudden in May I found an add for a job, in which my skills would perfectly fit. It's one of the almost non-existant jobs by the German government, which is my employer. I was not given an appointment for showing myself, but I was told, that I might look in if I'm near there. You bet I was! I had a week off my Hamburg job anyway and drove the 900 km to look into this job and to say "Hi, here I am."
They are still going through the applications, around 150 for two jobs, so I did not hear anything so far.
I want to put my mind on that job, the town and the surrounding there and work with all my sentiments, and there are many, regarding Switzerland.

I can't show a progress photo of s*w*i*t*z*e*r*l*a*n*d because I'm going to frog what I had worked on the weekend. I want to make it as technically perfect as possible for my ability or non-ability at the time being. You know what I did? Did the same thing wrong as in my very first bracelet. There I discovered I needed some backing to get tension. I was satisfied to figure out by myself to put some fusing on. This time I forgot my self-taught lesson. Oh well, such is life. ;-)