Monday, 9 January 2017

Anniversary Celebrations

Thursday it was our 1st wedding anniversary!  I told him it didn't seem like a day over 10 years!  No, seriously, I wonder where the time has gone!  We got married on our 'anniversary' from when we first got together.  So, not only was it our 1st wedding anniversary, but also 5 years since we got together as a couple.  Well, every year (except last year of course!) we've gone to the same place.  I sooo wanted to go there again this year, but told hubby to 'surprise me'.   The suspense was getting too much,
however, and I managed to squeeze it out of him the evening before......we were going where I was secretly hoping.....Have you guessed it yet?

























Papier Hier, Efteling

I'm sure you've guessed it now!  That's right, we went to Efteling!  I absolutely love that place!  It makes me feel like a child again!  Of course I have my favourite rides, but I just love the fairytale forest!  Each time we go there, Theo has to almost drag me out of there so that we still have time to go on the rides!  Every time I go there, I seem to see something that I haven't noticed before!  This year, was no exception, of course!  I happily lost myself, and found my inner child once again in that fairytale forest!


My facourite rides, of course are Droomvlucht, Fata Morgana, Villa Volta and Spookslot (haunted house, not a ride but is stunning effects)  Of course I took my new camera, and got some varying quality pictures.  Really wanted to snap the fairies in Droomvlucht, but I was too slow to get the camera settings right!  I did get a couple, but I could have done just as well with my phone camera lol.  But here are a few snaps from what was a truly magical day.....

Sprookjebos, Efteling
Even grown-ups can play in the Sprookjesbos (Fairytale Forest)

Hans en Gretje huis, Efteling
Hans en Gretje huis/Hansel and Gretel house
Vrouwe Holle, Efteling
Vrouwe Holle/Mother Holle


Efteling elf
Efteling

Assepoester, Efteling
Assepoester/Cinderella

Indische Waterlelies, Efteling
Indische Waterlelies/Indian Waterlilies
Sneeuwwitje, Efteling
Sneeuwwitje/Snow White

Klein Duimpje, Efteling
Klein Duimpje/Tom Thumb

Sprookjesboom, Efteling
Sprookjesboom/Story Tree

Droomvlucht, Efteling
Droomvlucht/Dream Flight

Carnaval, Efteling
Carnaval - really for the little ones, but it's a 'must see' for all ages to ensure you have that memorable tune going round your head for a week afterwards!

Pardijn, Efteling
Princes Pardijn

Sprookslot, Efteling
Sprookslot/Haunted House

Roodkapje, Efteling
Roodkapje/Little Red Riding Hood
Langnek, Efteling
Langnek/Long Neck

Efteling
Efteling


Villa Volta, Efteling
Villa Volta

Sprookslot, Efteling
Sprrokslot, 'Don't Feed The Snowman' sign
Feta Morgana, Efteling
Feta Morgana

Winter Efteling
Theo at Winter Efteling






Winter Efteling
Theo, Winter Efteling










Efteling
Efteling

Efteling


Aquanura, Efteling
Aquanura - simply the most beatufiul end to a magical day!  Stunning water and light display

Aquanura, Efteling
Aquanura

Aquanura, Efteling
Aquanura

Aquanura, Efteling
Aquanura

Aquanura, Efteling
Aquanura
Aquanura, Efteling
Aquanura

Aquanura, Efteling
Aquanura

Efteling
Efteling

On that note, although some of my pictures may look enticing, I would like to advice that nobody goes there.  Never, ever, ever! Especially not non-Dutchies.  Firstly you would hate it!  Secondly, you will add to the big crowds already there, and turn my little fairytale paradise into a big bustling Disney kind of place.  Nothing wrong with Disney, I might add, only that I love the tranquility of Efteling more!  So, don't go there!  Nothing against non-Dutchies either, of course, as I fall into that category.....but I found it first, so go get your own fairytale!  Previous years, we've been lucky and it has been very quiet there.   Apparently it gets extremely busy in summer and during school holidays, but they are now trying to entice foreigners to visit, and are adding more attractions.  This year schools were still on Christmas holiday so it was packed.  Apart from three inconsiderates, it was no problem, just longer queue times for the popular rides/attractions.  Those three though should not be let out in public though!  First, was a man that literally pushed in between Theo and I, trampling on my foot, and sending me flying into the other mans buggy, just to barge in front of us.  This was going in to the Snow White House.  There was a crowd of quite young kids, stood looking through the window into Snow Whites room.  A man with a buggy was stood at the back, clearly waiting for his older son/daughter to rejoin him.  He was just stood considerately, allowing the kids to look, so I left him space while this other clown who thought he was God simply rammed us all, kids included to get his little monster to the front of the viewing glass.  I had to steady myself by grabbing the mans arm with the buggy, so I didn't fall onto it and crush the snoozing child in it! Charming!  Second was in the queue for Feta Morgana, where the man behind me, holding a very young child was so close that said child got swallowed up IN my hair - sticky fingers and half spat out sweets included!  Words failed me (and the language) - I turned my head a few times, but he failed to notice....too scared that somebody was going to queue jump and squeeze into the 2mm gap he'd left behind me! lol.  The third was something else.  This time it was a woman with a toddler, who blatently climbed UNDER the queue barrier at Carnaval, pushing not only in front of us, but all the way down the queue lines!  Theo muttered something to me along the lines of 'Did I just imagine that?! in English, and very quietly, but she heard it (that wasn't his intention, but I would have said it a LOT louder, believe me lol) - she replied, snapping back in Dutch that she was taking her sprog to the toilet (no mistaking what she said, and what she was doing. She most definitely wasn't rejoining someone in the queue, but was indeed taking her child to the toilet - in the queue line!).......perhaps she let her little one do that IN the queue line?!  Really?!  I know theres a parent/swap thing in place, and rightly so, but that was something else.  I don't know how far she got through the queue as we were only at the halfway mark, still with almost an hours wait to go.  She disappeared out of sight after a minute of ducking and diving under the barriers!  I hope somebody braver than us managed to stop her, and I feel truly sorry for her child being dragged up by THAT!  Anyway, rant over!  The rest of the day was perfect!  Busy places always attract a few people who think they're superior to everyone else, but mostly everyone waited their turn.  My only regret was that I didn't have the guts (or time) to get the camera lens off and snap those 3 ignoramouses and plaster their mugshots all over the internet, in shame - yes, I would do it!  One thing is for sure though, I laughed about it!  If you can't go to a Fairytale park and chill a bit, forget the bustle and rush of daily life.....you're not going to enjoy it half as much as those who are!

We had planned on eating at the Pancake restaurant in Efteling, and planning somewhat wisely, we thought if we got there soon before 5pm, we'd beat the rush hour for dindins.  Wrong!  The queue for the restaurant tailed not only out of the door, but around the corner, so we delved into some milka snack bars that we'd taken with us instead, and stopped at Burger King on our way home later that evening for dinner!  My guess is we would have faced about a 2 hour wait to even get a table in the restaurant, so we didn't bother!  That is on my to-do list for next time we visit there though.  I love pancakes, so would love to sample them in Efteling!  As we didn't have a special dinner on our anniversary, we went out the following evening to Il Pozzo (Italian restaurant) in Utrecht.  Not only fantastic food, but also budget friendly, and a beautiful location on Oudegracht (the old canal) right in the city centre.  One of our favourite haunts, I'd highly recommend it to anyone visiting Utrecht!

So, that was our special day, and it was truly magical.  Although I didn't manage to snap any good fairy pictures on Droomvlucht, I am proud to say I did physically catch a couple - okay, I exaggerate, we bought them in the gift shop lol.  Got them sat on the shelf in our bedroom at the moment, but I'm planning to make a felt fairytale forest backing and base to sit them on.  I have so many projects on the go though, that I don't know when I'll get around to doing it, but it is on the to-do list!  I want to recreate a magical looking piece that captures that mythical theme from Droomvlucht.  I just can't get enough of that ride, and want to capture it.  So, I hope I can do it justice......perhaps another trip to efteling will be in order - inspiration! lol  I did also get another addition to my teddy bear collection.  You've guessed it!  As if I don't have enough already, but this little cutie wearing an Efteling embroidered sweater just kind of fell off the shelf into my arms.  What could I do?!  Theo approves of my teddy collection a lot more than he does of my shoe collection, so even he agreed that we just had to take that little fella home!

So, our first wedding anniversay, which is paper, was two tickets to my favourite place in the world!  Next year, will of course be 'cotton' so I am going to make a cross stitch wedding sampler.  I've had it for a while as I found the perfect pattern a while ago after extensive searches!  I was originally going to make it for our wedding itself, but I decided to keep it back for the cotton anniversary instead (that, and I ran out of time!) I didn't want too old fashioned a design, but I do nonetheless want to do it onto evenweave fabric, not aida - for that timeless look.  I've done cross stitch for many years, but believe it or not have never used evenweave!  So that will be a small learning curve, but the project itself will certainly keep me busy for a while! It isn't a huge project, but cross stitch is very slow going, so it will keep me out of mischief!  I just need to source some fabric and stock up on any threads I may be lacking.  On that note, I am of course working on some crochet items too, so watch this space!

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