Tuesday, 7 June 2016

New Zazzle shop

Hello everyone,

A little change to the normal Layout. 
Not to your right hand you can see the new DLA shop!!!

This little ( at the moment ) shop has all my own graphic designs. At the moment it has my collection of Forest friends, Fox, Raccoon and Weasel, in my try to make everyone a little more environmentally friendly.

 All with thinking green in mind you wont be able to use the design in every product Zazzle has, but only products that have been revised by me and that have certain links to sustainability.

All the current shirts available are all 100% organic and the totes available are 100% cotton
I am looking into other products to place the graphics on but the list is huge, so be patient.

So go ahead and take a look,



Thursday, 31 March 2016

Winter Spirit 05...... WWII reminder and Berlin

During this trip we got to see alot of history and quite a few of its scars. Before we got to Berlin we did get to go to Auschwitz concentration camp. A real eye opener for those who quite don't know or understood the gravity of WWII. I saw that it had a great impact to those who where younger. I personal have read and have studies quite a bit of it so for me the hardest and most unpleasant part of the trip. I how ever do recommend going to really get a sense of how hard and horrible a world war can be. (I didn't take any picture I couldn't  do it).

But History is History and ignoring it or avoiding it is wrong.

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" 
-George Santayana

Now on to a much better note.

Who hasn’t heard of Berlin before, especially with the great history of the Wall of Berlin after WWII.

But before we got into Berlin we had the opportunity to see the Soviet War Memorial. The scale of the memorial is astounding.( As well as really cold)

Once in Berlin we got to have a bus-tour, where we got to see the most important buildings and monuments in the city, such as the Reichstag Building which was originally Parliament’s building which went through a lot of damage in 1933 and was abandoned until its reconstruction in 1999 after the reunification of Berlin and became again the building of parliament.

And of course one of the most visited parts of the city is Charlie’s checkpoint, which is where the American pass was between East and West Berlin. Currently you can see a part of the wall as well as some remembrances about it. You can still see several parts of the wall around the city which I believe are kept as remembrance of the cold war.

And of course one of the most see points is the Brandenburg Gate which is said to be part of the inspiration of the arc d’ triumph in Paris. Because we where there right before new year you can see the structure behind the gate, I can imagine that this would be a great new year's reunion point because of its location.

Berlin is quite an interesting story, and for a city who was divided until 1989 its reconstruction has been admirable. The city is quite big as well, so I bough a day subway ticket, which I used to travel from one point of the city to another.  the Subway is easy to understand and at the time I used it it wasn't too crowded.

*All images are my own*
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Thursday, 25 February 2016

Winter spirit 04……. Krakow & Budapest

I have to admit, that this part of the trip is one that I never thought of traveling. And I can clearly say that I was wrong and that I would gladly return to them given the chance.

Krakow was an unexpected jewel find. Although it was always a place I was told I should visit, since a friend of mine lives there. So Agata if you are reading this I hope to meet you there again soon!
So we arrived late to Krakow and went directly to the hotel for the night. The following day was when we got to have the walking tour and had time to wander around.

We have to start with the Castle and its myth of course. It is said that in the mountain there used to live an evil dragon, so of course it was defeated and the castle is now build in its place. Not only did I find the tale amusing but I enjoyed seeing images of the dragon all around. In the castle not only will you find the cathedral but also one of Leonardo da Vinci’s most recognized artworks “Lady with an Ermine”.

Then we passed by the house where the Pope now Saint Jonh Paul II lived. As he was of polish birth. We entered the old town and went to the main square where a wonderful Christmas market was taking place, next to the church which has a story of its own. I was pleasantly surprised by the Krakow.

Unfortunately I can’t talk a lot about Budapest, Yes we were there but the mix of really thick fog, didn’t let us see much on the driving tour. Although it did give us some great pictures in Fisherman’s Bastion. It gave all the pictures a mystical sense to them.

The other reason was we were there on Christmas an as you can expect a lot of things where closed so all we got to do was a little walking tour, to the Millennium monument, on which you would find the contemporary art museum and the fine arts museum, which were closed but seemed quite impressive.

 ( I also have to note that I got sick on this part of the trip and completely lost my voice, so a big thanks to Emma my trip buddy who became my interpreter , you are the best!)

*All images are my own*
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Friday, 12 February 2016

Winter Spirit 03..... Switzerland and Austria

There were two places in which you would have been able to ski during the trip. Switzerland and Austria.

Our second stop on our winter trip was in the Swiss alps, in Ladenbrunen. It is said to be the inspiration on the elvish city of Riverdale, in Lord of the ring by Tolkien. It’s a little sleepy town situated between the Alps.  With waterfalls and small streams flowing though the city.  Although there isn’t’ much to do if you are not the skiing type, or don’t want to ski, I still recommend you go up the mountains. They have the most spectacular view of the mountains that will leave you breathless.  It showcases nature’s beauty in the Alps.

And even the infrastructure of the little town is looks perfectly situated. And where all that you think of in Christmas can be seen, the snow, the lookalike gingerbread houses, the trees, frozen ponds, etc. And here of course it’s also the perfect place to buy Swiss Army knife, since they are completely made and manufactured in Switzerland. And if you are a chocolate lover you can clearly see why the Toblerone represents the Alps.

After Italy it was off to Austria, not only was the birth place to Mozart and many composers but also where one of the biggest European powers used to live, the Hapsburgs.  The two cities that we visited were Salzburg, birth place of Mozart and Vienna who doesn’t need any more explanation. Now if you want to find one of the best Christmas markets on Europe go to Salzburg, not only is it a little town,  and close to the mountains where you can ski, but the market was absolutely gorges, filled with food stalls and every kind of Christmas decoration you might want for your house.

  Another of the tourist attractions to Salzburg is that it’s the town where ‘The sound of Music’ was filmed, so you can take the tour that takes you to all of the filming locations and sing “do- re-mi” to your hearts content.

You can also go to the Castle, which was a for trains on the top of the mountain, and not only does it have spectacular views, but the castle is in pristine form, now this is a medieval castle, not renaissance you got in Italy, so don’t expect glamour, but rather a fortress. And before you leave be sure to try the Mozart Ball’s a delightful little chocolate/ almond ball named of course after the famous composer.

After a quick stop to see the summer palace which we unfortunately didn’t have but an hour to look around and walk in the gardens.

 It was off to Vienna, in which we were given a small driving tour of what we could see. However with only half a day there, we didn’t have much time to explore especially because we decided to go to a concert. We did walk through the main street, and got a warm drink by the palace, before going off to the concert hall. There we were given an interesting night , not only did we get a concert but we had a couple of opera singers who sang a few songs, and a ballet couple, who danced to another set of songs. It was quite interesting and we really enjoyed it.

It is one of the cities that I wish we had more time, but then again I apparently said that to every single city we went to.

*All images are my own*
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Friday, 15 January 2016

Winter Spirit 02.... Italy

Italy = Renaissance

I have never been to Italy and it was the part of the trip that I was really looking forward to it. It was one of those places that everyone told me I would love, so expectations where quite high.

The first stop was Pisa, it was a quick landmark stop. As it is winter and late it was quite easy to walk and there wasn't much of a crowd, unfortunately  we lost the light quite quick and a lot of the pictures didn't do it justice.  We weren't able to go into the main cathedral, but we did a walk around the grounds. the story of the tower is so interesting that it has taken the spot light of the church, although it was supposed to be the other way around. And back to the bus to finish the driving for the day.

Firenze or Florence the city of the Medici, home of the David, and location of Il Duomo. Although not that big of the city there is enough to keep you busy for some days. narrow streets lead you to the center of town Il Duomo.  I was surprised by the size of it and I can easily see how it inspired MichelAngelo who was born here, and the place where he left one of this masterpieces.

From Firenze another quick stop at Orvieto which is located at the top of a hill. It was used  as a safe place for the pope for quite some time. It has an impressive cathedral and impressive cliff views.

Roma, the capital and heart of Italy,  not only was it the heart of the Roman empire where you can see the Colosseum and the Parthenon, you can see the historic sites, and of personal importance to me was the ability to go into the Vatican, which is a country on its own. Saint Peter designed by my favorite Bernini.

In Verona is where you can find Juliet's balcony and everyone knows the story of Romeo and Juliet.

And to end our tour of Italy the last stop was in Venice. They say that no matter what you will get lost in Venice. However you cant get lost without really knowing  where you are, so the day was spent wondering around the streets without a direction, at the end all you have to do is either take a  water taxi or make your way back to St Mark's Basilica and track your steps out of the city.

As I probably have said before,  the Renaissance is one of my favorite artistic eras, and Italy is filled with them and you can feel it in every city that I visited. I can easily say that i will go back to Italy and spend more time, eating gelato, wandering the streets, and be inspired just by its culture.

*All images are my own*
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Friday, 8 January 2016

Winter Spirit 01...Paris

Paris, just saying the name of the city brings the images of the Mona Lisa, the Impressionists and many  more the mind.

From the Eiffel Tower to the design of the city in general it makes for a wonderful walking day. It is hard to decide what to do in Paris if you only have one day, but I would recommend a general tour of Paris, either a bike tour or a walking one, to see the mayor monuments of the city. This would then give you an idea of that interest you the most for when you return to the city. I have been in Paris before, so i did not feel like going into a museum as I know that it would take few hours in each and one day only has so many hours. Had I more time I would of been on the line into the Louvre to say hi to Lisa by Da Vinci, and Orsay for some  Monet, ManetRenoir and others. 

You can clearly see how it became the inspiration to many artist, and not only painters, but writers and movie makers as well. This is where I would recommend the film 'Midnight in Paris'.

But if Art isn't your thing there are plenty of things to do and explore. Something special this time around was the Christmas market that where on both sides of the Champs Elisse. Where you can find as many souvenirs as much as Vin au chaud, crepes and macaroons. Not to mention seeing all of the mayor stores all light up with fairy lights. and decorations.

Paris in winter is beautiful but it is cold and wet so be prepared, It also helps that there aren't as many people as there would be in summer, so lines to museums and attractions are always shorter.

*All images are my own*
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Sunday, 3 January 2016

Happy New year 2016, Winter Spirit

Happy New Year everyone!!!! I hope that this 2016 is a prosperous and fulfilling year.

I know that this will be  year of many changes for me, starting by finding a job, relocating, and hopefully traveling and lots of museums.

I know I went missing for some time and there is an explanation to that. After my hectic MBA year, I decided to do some traveling, so I took an European tour,

It will not be any time soon again that I will have the opportunity to have such a long travel time, so I took a 24 days 12 countries tour, Winter Spirit by Topdeck:

France, Switzerland, Italy, Vatican city, Hungary, Poland, Germany, Netherlands, Czech republic, Austria, Belgium and a quick stop in Slovakia.

All I can say its the its a once in a life time experience, And although there where some days that  did feel like we where stuck in the bus its those days that we found little gems in our lunch stops, such as Verona, Orvieto and our quick stop in Slovakia.

Every single stop was followed by I wish we had more time,  and by the end it felt weird to be separated from the group you spent almost a month with. Same group in which we celebrated Christmas, New years and in my case my birthday.

Both our Tour Guide Alyse and our driver Zully  took excellent care of us, And because we did have a free day in every main stop, It was easy to follow your own interests, for me ( as you can expect) it was museums and churches.

I will try to write a couple of post more Art and architecture related in the following weeks. Including some pictures of the places I visited.

PS this picture was taken in Venice

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