Why do we like to complicate our lives?

Watching my dog sleep today, really got me thinking. She looked so at ease, and comfortable, that I had to wonder why can’t humans be that happy in their own skin.

Sometimes, it just seems to me like we love to complicate our lives. We look everyday for more and more ways in which we make ourselves feel like we belong, like we fit a certain pattern. We don’t feel comfortable unless we achieve this goal. But, why do we have be like others? Why not just be ourselves?

This behavior starts very early in the life of a person. Ever since we’re kids we aim to be the cool ones in school, to have the nicest toys and games. Later in life, we want to have a perfect body and the most expensive clothes, cars, houses. It seems like our toys just get bigger with age.

944326In modern society, you have to meet all those conditions, in order to have a certain status. Media, through television and magazines, program our brains to follow a path in order to be considered successful in life. If we can’t reach it, we use social media to project into the world a perfect image of a perfect life we live, when behind closed doors, things are much different.

We seem to be willing to do pretty much anything to get to that level. People get themselves in debt in order to maintain the appearance of that status. Some get loans to buy things they don’t really need, just to be like others, and show that they can have a certain lifestyle as well. But what if you can’t? Is it so important to alter the quality of your life, in long term, just to impress others?

Media pollutes the brains of teenagers, by publishing modified images of perfect bodies which don’t really exist. This guided society in a place where ‘normal’ is putting on a mask, before going out in the world. We use make up, lotions, creams, expensive clothes and painful heels, covering our skin in chemicals, in order to achieve the ultimate beauty goal, dictated by the lies published in the right places.

What strikes me most is the use of medicine out of pure vanity, and altering our bodies just to fit in the patterns dictated by the new type of society. Some people put themselves through so much unnecessary pain and in the end, you have to ask yourself, for who you do all of this? Oh, yes, you do it for yourself. Is the outside going to change who you really are inside? The ‘wrapper’ is going to get old and wrinkly anyway. Is it worth the pain and falseness? Wouldn’t it be so much better if we would just act and look natural?

20120704-141109Why can’t we be sincere about our feelings and emotions? Why always hide what’s really going on inside us? What are we trying to prove and to who? It seems like we live in a world where we encourage and promote everything that’s fake, and discourage what’s sincere and natural.

The real value of each and single one of us comes from what makes us unique. Who would want to live in a place where we are all the same, and pretend to be something we are not? Some act so well, even they forget who they really are.

What a world would be, if we would all quit imitating and just be ourselves…

Happy Halloween!


First of all, both me and Lisa would like to wish you all a very Happy Halloween! 

Furthermore, because we want our pets safe, Lisa would like to ask all furry kid’s parents to read a few Halloween safety tips:

1. Remember, the candies are only for the trick-or-treaters! Dogs have their tricks when it comes to getting what they want, so make sure the bowl with sweets is out of their reach.

2. If you take your pet trick-or-treating check if your dog/cat has proper identification. In case they get lost, it will be easier for you to find them. But we don’t want to get there, so better put a leash on, and keep them close to you, at any given time.

3. If you dress your pet in a Halloween Costume please be 100% sure the costume isn’t unsafe or uncomfortable for your furry buddy, and also agrees to wearing it. We also want them to have fun, right? 🙂

4. Last but not least, the candle of your lantern might cause serious burns, or might upset the stomach of your dog/cat. Place the pumpkin in a place where you know it will be safe from your pet’s reach.

Speaking about pumpkins, we hope you like what our little Jack-O-Lantern can do:


Thank you for reading and Happy Trick or Treating!

To the Windmill!

20141019_1407111A windy day is a perfect day to visit a windmill and actually see it work. So, I hopped on my bicycle and started the trip towards a beautiful mill, from the beginning of 1900. You might think: ‘1900?! Oh, it’s probably a museum.’ Guess again! It’s still working, and it does a fantastic job.

Even before getting close to the fascinating building, I could see the enormous blades turning. What a fantastic mechanism!

I couldn’t believe my ears when the miller told me they used the windmill even during storms with wind speeds of 89–102 km/h. And I have to say, I was very impressed by the power such a construction can develop. Being inside, I could feel the entire mill moving. As soon as the wind starts, it all comes alive! This explains why it is used for such a large spectrum of activities. Historically speaking, the windmills kept Netherlands going, being used in pumping the excess water from the land into the sea, in cutting the wood needed for building ships, and, of course, as a source of power. The millers even use the windmill to pull the bags of grains, at the desired floor.


The bags of grains are ready!

I was touched to see all the work and dedication invested into maintaining everything. Basically, being a miller is not a job or a hobby, but a way of life. You have to love what you do, in order to feel the mechanism and understand it perfectly.

Not an easy job I would say, but people really love their mills, and take very good care of them. Hard work, as the reparations have to be done in the same way and with the same type of materials used by the original constructors. This was learned the hard way, when the mill was repaired, at one point, by a contractor who used new, fancy construction materials. From the very first use of the windmill, it was easy to see that the newly set bricks couldn’t support the movement of the entire structure. The whole reparation had to be restarted, and done properly, the ‘old fashioned’ way.

Very imposing and fascinating buildings, and all the respect for the millers who invest so much time and energy into keeping them going!

The Majestic Owl

Even if I never saw this fascinating bird, I know she lives somewhere close to my home, as I can sometimes hear her during the night.

This inspired me to make the painting below and I believe is one of my best, so far 🙂


Contact me to buy an original painting or a very high quality reproduction on canvas 

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Spooky Halloween Night

I hope you enjoy my latest painting: Full moon night, spooky castle on a hill, bats, black cat and carved pumpkins, in a perfect Halloween landscape.


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Introducing my adorable pup, Lisa

20141023_2306366After years of waiting, THE moment is finally here. I’m very proud to let you know I finally have a dog! Her name is Lisa, and she’s an adorable 12 year old Husky Labrador Mix.

I didn’t have in mind to get a dog anytime soon, but when we met, she adopted me, and the rest is history.

Welcome to the family, sweet Lisa! We’ve very happy to have you here.

How to make a Halloween Jack-O-Lantern!

I’ve carved my first pumpkin a while back, and since then, I made a Jack-O-Lantern every year. It’s too much fun! Here’s the evolution of my lanterns, during the years:

joined halloween photos

It’s that time of the year, and in case you decide to make your own, I’ll guide you through the carving process, step by step.

What you will need

  • One Pumpkin, of course
  • Caring knife
  • Spoon
  • Chalk or a Pen
  • Candles

How to Carve the Pumpkin – Step by Step

In case your pumpkin is muddy, before getting to the carving, you can give it a bath. He’ll love it! 🙂DSC_13900

1. Moving to more serious things, what I always start with, is a plan. I think about what I would like to carve and draw it on a piece of paper. This way, I can make as many adjustments as I want, before actually drawing on the pumpkin. I like to draw freehand, as the end result will be unique and original, but you can always choose to download a template from the internet and follow a specific pattern.


2. Draw the selected pattern on the pumpkin. Use the pen or piece of chalk to draw the face of the pumpkin. I recommend drawing on the smoother side, which looks the most as a ‘future-face’.

3. Create a removable cap in the pumpkin. Cut around the stalk carefully, inserting the knife at an oblique angle. This will create the cap. Make sure the hole is big enough to allow your hand to reach inside the pumpkin.DSC_13933

4. Use the spoon and remove the seeds and flesh from the walls of the pumpkin.


5. Give your pumpkin a face! Start carving, carefully, avoiding severing any floating features, such as teeth or the center of the eyes. Watch your fingers!


6. Clean the outside of the pumpkin, if needed.

7. Because adding lighting is a very important part of creating the atmosphere, insert a candle in your pretty lantern. Remember to use a short, wide candle, that won’t tip.

DSC_140558. You’re done!  Find a nice spot for it, in your garden, sit back and enjoy your work. Remember that the best time to see the full impact of your carving, is after dusk.

So, what do you think of my Jack-O-Lantern? 🙂

In hope I’ve stimulated your imagination and creativity, and you will find this guide useful for your own little project.

Happy Carving everyone!

Spring Tides in Netherlands – The Ultimate Machine (II)

Just as predicted, only 5 hours later, the sea level dropped, and everything went back to normal. The harbor and surrounding land are visible once again.

Underneath the brown grass located in the center of the pictures, between the harbor and the birdhouse, is actually water, not land! It will take a few more days until the sea fully cleans the area.

11:30 AM:



5:00 PM



It’s almost unbelievable to witness such a dramatic change in landscape, in only a few hours. The sea claimed part of the land for half a day, and then returned it. Impressive force of nature!

Spring Tides in Netherlands – The Ultimate Machine

The exceptionally high and low tides, called spring tidesoccur at the time of the new moon or the full moon when the sun, moon, and earth are approximately aligned. 

Waking up in the morning and realizing all the birds from the reservation are gone = it’s happening. The birds leave when they have nothing else to sit on, as the land turns into water, and also when they feel the weather is going to get a turn for the worse. Two days of extremely powerful wind from the right direction, combined with the spring tide, did the trick. Because the conditions mentioned above must be just perfect in order to experience this phenomena, it happens quite rarely, about once every 20 years.

Reaching the dam, I was amazed by the view! The harbor is gone, the stairs which used to take you to lower ground are underwater, and the Kiekkaaste(bird observation house) is in the middle of the sea!


From what I understand, in just a few hours the water level will be back to normal, and the landscape will look the same as before. Absolutely mind blowing, especially when I was here a not very long ago, and it looked like this:

DSC_64077This was an absolutely fascinating experience. Thank you Mother Nature, for an amazing show!