Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Cats & dogs

I found a quiz on Nathalies blog that I couldn't resist:

You Are: 60% Cat, 40% Dog

You and cats have a lot in common.
You're both smart and in charge -
with a good amount of attitude.
However, you do have a very playful side
that occasionally comes out!

Are You More Cat or Dog?

On another note... Today I had to go to my 'working with experience' course again. This second lesson we told about our not-so-good experiences as a client in the mental health care system. We each had about 5 minutes to tell about some of it. I started and told about my bad experience with my GP at the time (20 years ago), who said I had "no right" to have eating disorders and that I wasn't the type to have them. That caused a major relapse and it took time before I had the courage to ask for help again. I also told about the doctor of the centre where I had my last treatment that totally misjudged the situation when my thyroid gland almost completely stopped working. I got compliments about the way I told my story. The rest of the afternoon was filled with the stories from the others. They were impressive, very moving, at times incredible. The stories had a lot of impact on everyone. We closed the meeting positively by telling a good experience though.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Paranormaal Alternatief

Yesterday I went to Paranormaal Alternatief in Rijswijk, the biggest indoors spiritual fair in The Netherlands. I had talked about it with friends, but had completely forgotten all about it! They called me when I was just out of bed to ask if I would come too. I called Joke and asked if she wanted to go with me. She did, so I picked her up and we drove to Rijswijk.
We were at the entrance about 1pm, the fair would close at 5pm. There was a lot to see and do. Around 400 stands with all kinds of paranormal and spiritual participants: shops, massage, consultations (tarot, palmreading, iridology, etc. etc.), workshops, lectures... I didn't buy anything, though there was enough I wanted! Just nothing special, nothing you can't buy in an esoteric shop.
We looked for someone to do a reading. We chose a man with the sign 'voluntary contribution'; not to rip him off, but because that's the way to make it possible for everyone. First he did a reading for Joke with fairytale cards. When he was done, I decided to have a go too, but with other cards (Oracle of the Indian medicine men, or something like that). He told me to focus more on reason and less on feeling. That was a surprise; people often say I'm too rational. The man said that is because I'm good at putting things into words. I sound well-thought-out, but that doesn't mean I did think it over by reason. Hmmm.... I'll have to think some more about that.... Interesting....
At 4pm we attended a dreamtime concert by Nada Naga. We lay down, closed our eyes and the music started: singing and all kinds of instruments like didgeridoo, singing bowls, drums. The soundhealing lasted for 45 minutes and I really enjoyed it, very relaxing. I haven't made pics, but this is from another concert to get the idea.

Friday, January 26, 2007


Ron and I haven't had a real holiday for a couple of years. All our extra money goes into the rebuilding of our home. Ron still doesn't feel better and he really needs a break from daily life.
Last week we got the e-mail newsletter of Centerparcs. They are having last-minute winter sales with very interesting discounts and we decided to have a go! We've booked a midweek in February, in a cottage in De Eemhof. We've been there for our honeymoon in 1995. It's not too far from here and the village is great. We are sooo looking forward to it!!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

TT #26: goddess & fantasy art

Lady of Shalott by Waterhouse

Thirteen favourite goddess & fantasy artists

I love art in all its aspects. For this TT I listed (in no particular order) 13 of my favourite artists, especially in the field of goddess and fantasy art. Some do more than that, but that's how I got to know them. I give examples, but all the websites are worth exploring!


Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Working with experience

This afternoon I started with the course "Working with your own experience". I'm working on setting up an aftercare group for people who have/had BED (Binge Eating Disorder) and I'm a member of a pool with people who use their own experience to help others. My "experience fields" are eating disorders and depression. Last week I had an intake with the two course leaders.
The group consists of 9 people. Everyone has experience as a client in the mental health care system, but with different symptoms / illnesses. The course will help us to put our own experience to good use in different situations. There will be 12 course afternoons from 1 to 4.
Today's theme and aim was to get to know each other. We got several assignments. In one of them I mentioned that I'm a witch. Some people were interested, some tacitly accepted it, but one man clearly didn't take me seriously. He made a 'joke' too. Ah well, there will always be reactions like that... They don't hurt me anymore, I shrug my shoulders and let it be. No use or need to explain it to someone like that, waisted energy. Otherwise it's a nice man, nobody's perfect. ;-) All in all it was a very tiring but interesting and worthwhile afternoon.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

TT #25: If you say...

Thirteen words to describe me

In a course (don't remember which one) we did a little game called "If you say" to describe someone. The leader started with "If you say (person X), you say....". The person next to him would answer with one word or little phrase to associate person X with and so did everyone in the circle. This is what they said about me:
If you say Cora, you say...

  • Tink or Tinkerbell - Easy, that's my nick and I listen to it as good as I listen to my real name. Some people don't even know my real name.
  • cats - I love all animals, pets and otherwise, but I've always been a cat person.
  • Ron - My other half! :-) We are together for more than half my life. We do a lot together, we belong together.
  • blue jeans - I rarely wear something else; only if I really have to or for a very special occasion!
  • computer - Yep, I'm addicted! I do everything I possibly can on the computer. I love to surf, mail, blog, etc. It is a necessity of life for me.
  • witch - my way of life, my religion or whatever you want to call it: it's me!
  • books - I'm a bookworm and have lots and lots of books, all read and most of them several times.
  • Robbie Williams - I don't think there is anyone that knows me but doesn't know that I'm a Robbie-fan.
  • lists - I like to keep track of a lot of things and make lists to do so. I use Excel and am very punctual in keeping everything up-to-date.
  • finance - My original profession is accountant. I'm good with money, check everything twice. I like numbers, digits, figures, numerals...
  • natural - Meant in the sense of "no make-up", also called WYSIWYG. I rarely use make-up. I don't like it, I have a very sensitive skin and it's just not me.
  • trees - I love nature: beach, forest.. everything, but I have a special bond with trees.
  • camera - When there is a special occasion or trip or event, I always bring my digital camera. I like to make pictures all the time.


Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Monday, January 15, 2007

Druid Animal Oracle

I finally have the Druid Animal Oracle by Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm! I've always loved it, but didn't have the money. Yesterday I found it on Marktplaats (a second-hand selling website) for a very reasonable price and it has already arrived. It is illustrated by Bill Worthington, the same one that illustrated their Druidcraft Tarot. The cards of both oracle and tarot are beautiful and the books are very informative and provide good explanations.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Ara meeting

Yesterday evening Sorcha hosted a meeting in Amsterdam for the women that are working on initiation into the Ara tradition, founded by Phyllis Curott. Unfortunately not everyone was able to come, we were with five women.
The meetings are meant to get to know each other better, but we also want to do something. We planned dates for 4 meetings before the initiation week. We will ask Phyllis what subjects we can work on, perhaps as some kind of preparation. We also want to do a ritual together.
The initiation will take place in October. We have discussed and looked into several locations, but there's one we would prefer. It's in the Belgian Ardennes, private, enough space in- and outdoors and reasonable prices. It will be expensive enough, because it lasts 9 days. In the spring a few are going to visit the location to make the final arrangements.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

TT #24: in my past

Thirteen things from my past

Yes, that's me in the header; taken in 1976! Get to know me a bit better by reading about the past. Here is a random selection of things that made me into the person I am today.

  • In the first class (when I was 6) I wore glasses with one eye covered. I have a lazy eye, but the glasses didn't work. I hated them and they were hideous too. I have one picture of me wearing them, but that's still packed somewhere.
  • My brother Gerard and I had a love-hate relationship during the time we both lived with our parents. He is 6 years older and we argued all the time. Very harsh sometimes, but when one of us was away we missed the other terribly. And when something happened to me, he stood up for me like my "big brother"; don't touch his little sis! We drove mum and dad crazy.
  • I have been a majorette for more than 10 years. I loved twirling and was very good in it. I also was the instructor for the younger group. And... I met Ron there, who played drums in the drumband!
  • I liked school very much. I have always been the best of the class with high marks without too much effort. That made me proud but it also caused a lot of stress for me, because I didn't want to "fail". The perfectionist in me prevailed.
  • When I was a child, I often came home with wounded birds and other little animals. I even got angry when my mum killed a fly or ant. Needless to say I still love animals that much, all animals!
  • I remember playing in our street when I was about 3. Suddenly a car (a Beetle) appeared and hit me, but stopped just in time. The image that remains is that I'm lying on the ground watching the bumper of the beetle. I wasn't hurt, just had a few scratches.
  • I was a father's child. He could answer all my questions (and I asked a lot!) and when he couldn't he helped me find the answer elsewhere. Later he was waiting for me after school with a cup of tea. He knew perfectly when to ask further and when to be silent. We watched sports together, discussed just about everything and made cryptograms together.
  • I also loved my mother very much, but with her I did other things: shopping, visits, etc. We were both early birds and in the morning she often helped me with my homework. She pronounced the words exactly as they were written. Her pronunciation of French, English and German sounded hilarious and we laughed about it a lot. But it worked and I always knew how to write the words!
  • When my sister Joke was 18 (and I was 8) she moved out to live together with Leo. I often stayed with them for the weekend, first in Beverwijk, later in Haarlem. I always enjoyed myself very much. My mum and dad didn't have their license, so Leo's car was the first in our family. When they got married in 1980 I was bridesmaid.
  • I've had issues with food and my weight for as long as I can remember. I can't say exactly when it became an eating-disorder. I have had anorexia, bulimia, binge-eating disorder and mixtures of them. I've been obese, skinny and everything in between. I've been addicted to laxatives. I tried all kinds of self-help and therapies. Finally, when I was 32, the breakthrough came when I checked myself into a specialized clinic in Amsterdam. I never say I'm cured, but I can handle it and know what to do when I'm going the wrong way.
  • When I was a teenager I looked older than I really was. I often had older friends. My boyfriends were always older. I had more, but before Ron I only had a few serious relationships. I got engaged with Arie, my dancing partner. We were together for two to three years, but he cheated on me with (what I thought was) a friend. I was devastated.
  • When I was 13 or 14 I was raped. Horrible, but I've had great help. I'll never forget it, but I have given it a place. Unfortunately the perpetrators have never been caught. About a year later I lost my real virginity to a very special friend in a wonderful and loving way. He knew about the rape and made me feel very special.
  • After school I wanted to go to university to study English and/or Dutch, but that wasn't possible financially. I decided to step in my father's footsteps. He was a book-keeper/accountant. I started to work 4 days (for KPMG) and go to school 1 day to become a registered accountant. I loved the work. Unfortunately a few years into it I had to stop because of my depression and eating-disorders.


Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Monday, January 08, 2007

Moving Wonder

Last Friday Wonder moved from Breda to Den Haag (The Hague). Very early Ron, Leo (my brother-in-law) and I drove to Breda. Unfortunately we were the only ones there to help. There was a lot of last things still to be packed; that kept us busy for hours. Then all the boxes and other stuff had to be walked to the elevator, load elevator, go down, empty elevator, walk outside, load removal truck and all over again. By the time everything was finally loaded into the truck, the four of us were worn out! The people moving into his old flat had left us something to eat and drink when they went back. The piece of chocolate I got tasted like heaven!
Ron was driving the removal truck and I was with him. It was very special to him. He has his driver's license for trucks, but it's not his daily work. He has fond memories though, because his father was a truck driver and he went with him very often. His father has died in 1996, but he was with us in the cabin. Ron felt it too. I know his father is very proud of him.
First we drove to Wonder's mother to collect a leather couch. She had made vegetable soup and sandwiches for us. Ron emptied a bottle of pop to quench his thurst. By then it was past 4pm, high time to leave for Den Haag. Wonder tried to get some more people to help over there, but we got only one man extra to unload in Den Haag. Not enough by far, but the truck had to be back that day, so there was no choice but to start. The new apartment is on the second floor, first a long straight flight of stairs and then a long one with a twist. I think you get the picture... When the truck was empty we sat down for a while, drove the truck back to Breda and were home around 1am. Needless to say we all were exhausted, empty and feeling like a wreck.
I knew I would do too much during the move; I had taken that into consideration. It turned out to be way beyond my capability. I have gone too far for too long, so now I have to pay. Over the weekend I have only slept and stayed on the couch. Saturday my throat started to hurt and my voice got worse. Since yesterday my voice is completely gone. Today I feel a bit better though. I won't complain too much; I know why I did it and it was my own choice to do so.
Still, the new apartment is a lovely place to live! I had been there before with Wonder, the old occupants are friends of us. It feels good and it matches Wonder perfectly. It was hard for him to leave the old flat, but he will make this his own little paradise again.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

TT # 23: 2007

Thirteen facts about 2007

Some interesting stuff about our new year!

  • 2007 will be the year of the sign Pisces in Western Astrology. The next year of Pisces will take place in 2019.
  • Most of 2007 overlaps with the Year of the Pig (Boar) in the Chinese calendar (dates until February 17 are in the Year of the Dog). The next year of the pig will start in 2019.
  • International Polar Year - a collaborative, international effort researching the polar regions. 2007-2008 is the 4th time, read the history here.
  • The UN Convention on Migratory Species and the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society WDCS have declared 2007 the Year of The Dolphin.
  • The European Union made 2007 the European Year of Equal Opportunities for All to make people in the EU more aware of their rights to enjoy equal treatment and a life free of discrimination.
  • Newsweek is declaring 2007 Year of the Widget (blend of window and gadget, fun web programs you can run right on your desktop or add as a feature on your blog)
  • The Australian Government has announced 2007 to be the Year of the Surf Lifesaver (YSL) to recognise the centenary of Surf Life Saving in Australia.
  • UNESCO designated 2007 the Year of Rumi (famous poet, jurist and theologian) to celebrate his 800th birthday anniversary.
  • African science ministers will ask their heads of state at this month's African Union (AU) summit to designate 2007 as the Year for Science, Technology and Innovation in Africa.
  • The city council of Santa Fe has declared 2007 the Year of O'Keeffe; Georgia O'Keeffe was an award-winning painter.
  • VisitBritain calls 2007 the Year of the Garden.
  • 2007 will be the Year of Europe in Brussels, Belgium.
  • Three weeks ago The New York Times invited predictions on what 2007 would be "the year of" in media, and the user-generated responses were abundant and wiki-licious. Unfortunately you have to be a member to read them!

main source: Google


Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


A few days ago I found a website to which I'm already addicted now: LibraryThing! It is an online service to help people catalog their books easily. You can access your catalog from anywhere, even on your mobile phone. Because everyone catalogs together, LibraryThing also connects people with the same books, comes up with suggestions for what to read next, and so forth. If you like books, it is really worthwhile to check it out. I find new features every day.
Joining is easy: just a (nick)name and password are required. A free account allows you to catalog up to 200 books. A paid account ($10 for a year or $25 for a lifetime) allows you to catalog any number of books.
Adding books can be done easily:
  1. adding manually
  2. search libraries from other members and simply click "add to my library"
  3. search 80 sources around the world (Amazon, all kinds of libraries, etc.)
  4. import books (by uploading, URL or source code - for example BookCrossing, Amazon)

I've put a LT-widget in the sidebar of my log, that shows random books from My Library. The covers bring you to the Amazon website, the rest are links to LibraryThing.
I already joined some groups there too, in which I can meet other LT-ers with the same interest. There's even a little community of Dutch people already. Not a lot of Dutch sources yet, but I think that will change.

I hope to see you on LibraryThing!
(and no, I don't get paid for this, I really like it that much!)

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year

First of all, happy new year to everyone who reads this! All the best to you and yours for the coming year (and after). 2006 wasn't exactly my year. I hope 2007 will bring positive and happy things. I'm all ready for it!

New Year's Eve we wanted to stay at home, because it was the first time for Freyja and Bastet. We didn't know yet how they would react to the fireworks. Our former cats weren't afraid or just hid until it was over. Both the dogs are pretty scared. Wonder and his girlfriend took them to the beach in the afternoon where they could walk without the banging of fireworks.
We had invited 6 friends to dinner and to spend the evening with us. Wonder and Ron prepared a delicious dinner. As a starter we had shrimp cocktail (soup for the vegetarians / non-fish eaters). Main course: grilled salmon with mustard sauce (veggieburger / steaks with mushroom sauce), broccoli and baked potatoes. Dessert: Viennetta (ice cake) with whipped cream. Yummy!!
We had a very pleasant evening together. Sometimes I felt sad because of mum. We had our own little routine for New Year's Eve. She always wanted to stay at home alone, but I brought her something in the afternoon, called her and after midnight we walked to her home to wish her happy new year. I missed her and dad so much, but I didn't let it spoil my evening. Whenever I needed it, someone saw it and gave me a hug.
At midnight we hugged and kissed and wished each other a very happy new year. I cried. Outside the fireworks burst out. I put Foofur and Boris in the little hall under the stairs, where it was dark and sounds seemed farther away. Freyja and Bastet weren't impressed. At the most they pointed their ears to the banging. No worries there.
We had no firework, but Wonder had brought his stuff for fire-spitting. He has done that more often, but Ron had never seen it. The wind was tricky and a bit dangerous, but it was spectacular to say the least. The neighbours were impressed too. Afterwards we sat inside and talked. Some went for a walk. When everyone went home (or to bed) Ron and I cleared away the mess so we wouldn't have to do everything this morning. I was in bed around half past 3.

pictures: IJs