maandag 16 januari 2017

Sunday stamps: Winter sports

This Sunday Stamps' theme is 'Winter sports'.

In the Netherlands there are no mountains, so it won't be a surprise that I don't have Dutch stamps about skiing.
On my turn I was surprised to receive a postcard from Portugal - not to receive the card itself, as Alvin and I send each other a postcard every now and then, but by the stamp he added to the back side, as I didn't link Portugal with winter sports, until now:



Nevertheless there are several Dutch people who go to mountains to ski in winter, too.
But the typical and most popular Dutch winter sport - which I used to practise in my childhood only - is ice skating.

Dutch Post has issued not one, but as far as I know at least eight stamps linked to this type of sport.

This one is from a definitive stamp sheet. The type of skate is 'Friese (Frisian) doorloper', a skate made out of wood, bound to the shoe, with one iron under it.



For speed skating the 'Noren' ('Norwegians') are more suitable. As you can see on this December stamp issued last year, the iron under this type of skate is longer and straight at the front side:



In contrary to skates used for dancing on ice (figure skating) and for ice hockey.
See this december stamp issued in 2014:



To improve the speed at speed skating, the 'klapschaats' ('clap skate') was invented in 1980 in the Netherlands. The idea already existed in the 19th century, according to a patent application in 1894.
Dutch Post has issued a stamp sheet on Dutch inventions in 2007, one of the stamps is this clap skate stamp:



Now some stamps showing skating people / personalities.
This famous one you will know. The stamp has been issued in 2010 as a December stamp, for the 60th anniversary of Snoopy:



This is a 3D stamp - scanned not as nice as in real as the image 'moves' when you move the stamp. It shows Yvonne van Gennip, a famous Dutch speed skater:



The stamp was issued together with a stamp of Ducth skate legend Ard Schenk. I don't have that one, but you can find it on the internet, see this picture.

Last but not least a stamp issued in honour or Reinier Paping. He won the so-called Elfstedentocht (Eleven cities tour) in 1963, which was a horrible tour at that time:



Each winter all people from Friesland (Fryslan, a province in the north east of the Netherlands) and West-Friesland (a part of the province Noord-Holland in the west of our country) and some other skate lovers, wonder if the winter will be cold enough to skate on natural ice and, more important, for the Elfstedentocht to take place. Most years it wasn't. For the ones who are curious about this 200 kms long tour skate happening, see for example wikipedia about Elfstedentocht and the official Elfstedentocht website.

See more stamps on Winter sports at and via this Sunday's Sunday Stamps!

zaterdag 7 januari 2017

Sunday stamps: Winter white



This Sunday stamps' theme is 'Winter white'.
How coincidentally: the first snow in my city arrived in the night of Friday to Saturday. In the west of the Netherlands however almost all snow has gone. In the east and south of our country the snow will last for at least this Sunday, but by the expected temperatures of over zero degrees Celsius it soon will be over.

'Winter white' makes me think of large winter landscapes. However, I don't have a lot of stamps showing this. Only the one above from Germany does, so I am happy to show it here.

But 'white', 'snow', shows up in several other stamps. Or not:
The following stamp immediately makes us think of snow, while in fact no snow is visible, on this Nijntje-(Miffy)-on-a-sleigh stamp:



In contrary to winter landscape stamps, single snowman stamps have passed through my hands already three times, thanks to so-called chaincards. After receiving, before forwarding, I scanned them. I hope my own card will return in the coming weeks or months, but at least I can show you the following stamps.

The most surprising ones to my opinion are these from Indonesia. Surprising because snow is the last thing which comes into my mind when thinking of Indonesia. A quick search on the internet however, learned that there is snow on the high mountains in Papua.



Also Hong Kong Post has issued a stamp showing a snowman:



In Russia there is more snow, and note the typical (?) hats these Russian snowmen wear:







These Dutch snowmen I added to the chaincards, two are from December stamps series (2012 and 2014 respectively), and the flying snowman showed up on a 'kinderpostzegel', children's welfare stamp sheet in 1983:





Here a regularly received stamp, from the United Kingdom:



And a regularly sent one, from the 2013 December stamp sheet, designed by Sieb Posthuma (1960-2014):



Finally there is a snowman on the most recent December stamp sheet, which, in a way, brings us back to a 'winter landscape' (-:



See more winter white stamps on this Sunday's Sunday Stamps blog, and follow the links mentioned there!

vrijdag 6 januari 2017

Postcards for the weekend: Trains / trams

This weekend's Postcards for the weekend's theme is dear to me, too: trains and trams. In the past I've sent and received several postcards (and stamps) on this subject, see trams, and trains (and of course the corresponding subject: railway stations).

This postcard I got at the Railway Museum in Utrecht (which happens to celebrate its 90th anniversary tomorrow).
Some years ago we visited this nice museum and that day there was an additional theme: safety on and besides the railways:



I must say that I prefer the present (electric) trains to the older (steam) ones. The main reason is the fact that these modern electric trains remind me of my trips to and with my late grandparents in the seventies.



An other reason is of course that the old, steam engined, trains produced a lot of smoke.
Nevertheless I was very happy to receive these postcards:

From John, from the United Kingdom:



On the back he added this matching stamp:



From Nomi, from Sri Lanka:



From Ravindra, also from Sri Lanka:



Be sure to check Ravindra's train blog, he collects postcards of trains and trams and has received many, from all-over the world!



And here a modern Japanese high speed train, I received from Hana, who designed this maxi/postcard by herself:





Finally a few trams:

From Natalie, a double deck tram sent from Hong Kong:



From John, also a double deck tram:



And this horse power driven tram:



The following postcard is Dutch and has been sent by me to Ravindra. It shows three historical trams. These - and other historical trams - still ride in summer between Amsterdam and Amstelveen, thanks to the people from the Tramway Museum:



See more trams and trains on Maria's Postcards for the Weekend blog and follow the links mentioned there.

maandag 2 januari 2017

Sunday stamps: Free choice or favourite stamp

This Sunday Stamps' theme is a free choice, or favourite stamp.

Of course it is impossible to choose only one favourite stamp. There are so many beautiful pictures, designs, colours!
Fortunately you can see some of my favourites on blog posts by Eva and by FinnBadger. And on and via this Sunday's Sunday Stamps!

Meanwhile I forced me to limit myself to two themes only. The first is 'Think Green', 2016's Europe Stamps theme. I think there is an urge to behave more 'green', to cherish ecology, and the Europe stamps make us a bit more aware of this.
All-over Europe the same design is shown slightly different. In future I hope to receive two chaincards with more Europe 2016 stamps, and I'm looking forward to show them here, then.
Today it is the Italian version which I love to share with you:



The second theme concerns the ones who provide us with so much joy: mailmen (m/f)!

In Dutch a mailman is named 'postbode', which rhymes. So here is my tiny 'Ode to the Postbode':







And my favourite drawing, for it's simple but powerful design:



See more great stamps at Sunday Stamps and follow the links mentioned there!

vrijdag 30 december 2016

Postcards for the weekend: Time, clock

This weekend New Year's Eve will take place. In Dutch we name this evening 'Oudejaarsavond', which means 'Old Year's Eve' :-)

'Time' and clocks have a major role in this time of the year, so I am happy that Maria chose 'Time / Clock' for theme for this weekend's Postcards for the Weekend.

The scenes in the two postcards which I like to share here with you are possible any day of the year.



I've send this one to John, who in 2015 had a mail project on the theme 'clocks'. It shows a painting by Marius van Dokkum. The painting speaks for itself, doesn't it?!
Personally I am a fan of the works of this Dutch painter. I learned to know his works thanks to postcards!
Especially his paintings about 'modern times' cause a big smile on my face, as do the 'couples', and some of his 'nostalgia' works ring bellsof recognition, too. I hope you'll enjoy his art, too!

The following postcard I bought in a museum and I've sent in 2015, too. Alas I forgot the name of the photographer, and I didn't write the name when I scanned it. Anyhow I think it an intriguing and nice picture.



See more postcards on 'time' and/or 'clocks' on and via Maria's Postcards for the Week blog.
Wishing a Happy New Year to all of you and your beloved ones!

woensdag 28 december 2016

In: from Kazachstan



This beautiful postcard I received from Assel from Kazachstan. The illustration has been made by Svetlana Popova.

On the back nice stamps, and I learn to say 'Hello' in more languages.
And do you notice the tulips on the round stamp? My country, the Netherlands, is said to be a land of the tulips. However, tulips don't originate from our low country. Their origin is in.. the mountains of Kazachstan! Via Persia, China, Turkey and Antwerp the first tulip finally reached the Netherlands in the end of the 16th century.



Thank you very much, Assel!

vrijdag 23 december 2016

Postcards for the weekend: December Holidays

This weekend's 'Postcards for the Weekend' theme is 'December Holidays'.

The reason of my crashed computer appeared to be an amount of dust in the desktop's ventilation system. So thanks to our vacuum cleaner I am able to scan and post postcards and stamps again!

The coming period I have some days off from work so I can spend my free time... writing cards! There is a delay in my outgoing season's greetings mail, despite of the fact that my computer didn't function during the past two weeks (by which I should have had more free time), and despite of the important message on the following card (thank you, John!).



The back side of the card shows matching stamps:



What else one can do in the December holidays? When there is snow, one could take a sleigh :



(Although made in Danmark and sent from Spain, I discovered the Fox speaks a nice season's wish in Dutch!.. Thank you, Eva, for the great card and matching stamps!)

One can buy some food and make some music:



Put on your best dress:



And while there still is no snow in the Netherlands, this pretty christmas penguin-in-snow was sent to me from Malaysia (thank you, Shufen):



On the back a nice stamp showing, among others, the Tapir, one of my all-time favourite animals, so it is always a great addition, even to a christmas card.



See more December Holidays postcards at and via this weekend's 'Postcards for the weekend'.