Tuesday, 16 December 2014

ABC Wednesday, W for Waterfalls, Wood Nymph

Vøringfossen (2004)





This summer I was in Norway, as I told you in my previous post.

 For Dutch people Norway and other mountainous countries are very attractive . One of the main attractions is a waterfall. There were many of them in Norway.

One of the smaller falls we saw.


There were  "Huldra" at Kjosfossen where  the train between Flåm and Myrdal halted.





 When ever we stop here we can hear the strange singing of the huldra. The huldra or woodnymph has a very beautiful face and  body, but at the back she has an ugly cow's tail.


Sometimes her back is hollow. She sings to seduce human males. She possesses cows which are either blue or grey. One could get hold of these cows if you threw a piece of steel over them.This way you could also get silver and table cloths.

The waterfall, which is called Kjosfossen, is in spring very impressive and always makes me think of the Holberg suite by Edward Grieg. 

We thank Denise Nesbitt, who created ABC, and we must thank Roger too for the weekly job to find  ten bloggers for each of the ABC Team members  to visit and to read their posts. For more interesting ABC posts click on the logo in the sidebar . This week we are looking for words    beginning with W.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

ABC Wednesday, V for Viking Law

This last summer I was again in beautiful Norway. I read several books about the Vikings, because they were the guys who sailed all over the northern hemisphere and invaded our countries. There were at the time no human rights treaties and the actions of the Vikings were quite understandable if you read their laws, especially their first law: Be Brave and Aggressive!

I sincerely believe that they were law-abiding people! They were obedient to these rules! I, personally like the fourth law!

 They left their traces  like the jurisdiction in the UK! They also had a judge and jury in court like in Britain and the USA.

Their alphabet however is very complicated. See for your self and try to write a comment with  these letters.

 We thank Denise Nesbitt, who created ABC, and we must thank Roger too for the weekly job to find  ten bloggers for each of the ABC Team members,  to visit and to read their posts. For more interesting ABC posts click on the logo in the sidebar . This week we are looking for words    beginning with V. 

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

ABC Wednesday, U for Undredal in Norway


"The charming village of Undredal, which has a population of 80 people and 300 goats, is situated by the Aurlandsfjord.  In the heart of the village is Scandinavia’s smallest stave church, built in 1147."

Undredal is well-known for its cheese production,especially for its white and brown goat cheese.  www.visitundredal.no.

While we were sailing in the Aurlandsfjord we saw this village from a distance and I took some photos to remember this delightful place in its peaceful surroundings.

With thanks to Denise Nesbitt,  who created ABC, and Roger, who took over from her. For more interesting ABC posts click on the logo in the sidebar. This week we are looking for words beginning with U.


Monday, 24 November 2014

Our World Tuesday, ABC Wednesday, T for Toadstools,Biology, Netherlands

During our stay at the holiday park in Hoenderloo, we saw a great variety of toadstools, of which we don't know the names. As usual I wanted to have some information about toad-stools and mushrooms, but I got so much to read that I decided to keep this post as short as possible.

The thing is that I must tell you that toadstools are very important for our environment. Without them trees will die and consequently so will we.

Because toadstools are so different from other organism around us, people thought for a long time that they were creations of witches, evil spirits or gnomes.

Now we can enjoy their beauty easily, even if we don't know much about them.

At school I learnt that we can divide them in several groups.

There  are mushrooms with gills under their caps,

but boletes, have tubes extending downward from

the underside of the cap, rather than gills.

Boletus edulis (English: cep, penny bun, porcino, or king bolete, usually called porcini)


The following article might help to understand that this group of fungi is complicated but very interesting.

By Susan Patterson, Master Gardener

Mushrooms are sometimes an annoyance to homeowners who do not welcome them in their gardens or lawns and often wish to get rid of them. However, mushrooms are considered decay fungi and make quick work of organic matter, such as thatch in lawns or compost materials. Their presence in the lawn and garden greatly improve the quality of soil. But how does one distinguish between various types of mushrooms? Continue reading to learn more about mushroom identification.



Mushroom Identification

A real mushroom is in the shape of an umbrella with a cup-shaped or flat cap on top of a stalk. Spores are produced by a group of cells, called basidia, found on the underside of the mushroom cap. While mushrooms come in all shapes, sizes and colors, the general structure remains the same.

These funny looking structures are actually fruiting bodies, or flowers that are produced by fungi. The body of the fungus is actually underground. There are many kinds of fruit bodies that are not true mushrooms, including puffball and morels. There are over 8,000 types of mushrooms found throughout the world. These include toadstools and fairy ring mushrooms.

Toadstool Info

Learning about mushrooms includes toadstool info. Many people are curious about the difference between a mushroom and a toadstool. In fact, the word is often used interchangeably. However, toadstools are actually considered poisonous mushrooms.

To be on the safe side, it is always best to consider all mushrooms as poisonous unless you are an expert at mushroom identification. Poisonous mushrooms, when eaten, can cause serious illness and in some cases, even death.

What are Fairy Rings?

You’ve probably heard mention of fairy rings at some point or other. So what are fairy rings? Lawn mushrooms that form a distinctive arc or circle, especially in the lawn, are known as “fairy rings.” They are the result of a special fungus called fairy ring, and there are between 30 and 60 different types of fairy ring fungi.

Fairy ring fungi feed on decaying matter in the lawn and tend to be worse in poor or sandy soil. Fairy rings can become very dense and kill grass. Good lawn aeration generally helps improve the quality of soil and reduce the presence of fairy rings.

This article was last updated on


This is my contribution for the letter T. Thanks to Denise Nesbitt who created this meme about 7 years ago !

Thanks to Roger who organizes these contributions every week.

Welcome to Our World Tuesday! This meme continues in memory of the work of Klaus Peter, whose "that's My World" brought people together from around the world every Monday to share the wonders therein--big and small.Please click on our  logo for "Our World Tuesday" in the sidebar. Thank you Team of O. W. T.!

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

ABC Wednesday, S, Scandinavia,Sod roof .

The first time I visited Norway I saw these remarkable houses covered by grass roofs. I was fascinated by the look of them. A long time before, I had met a Norwegian young man in one of the workcamps, where we worked during the holidays as volunteers. He told me a lot about Norway and also about the grass roofs. He said that some farmers put their goats on top of the roofs to keep the grass short and to prevent trees from growing on the houses.

Maihaugen in Lillehammer

Valdres Folkemuseum

Valdres Folkemuseum

"A sod roof or turf roof is a traditional Scandinavian type of green roof covered with sod on top of several layers of birch bark on gently sloping wooden roof boards. Until the late 19th century, it was the most common roof on rural log houses in large parts of Scandinavia.

 The load of approximately 250 kg per m² of a sod roof is an advantage because it helps to compress the logs and makes the walls more draught-proof. In winter the total load may well increase to 400 or 500 kg per m² because of snow.

 The birch bark underneath ensures that the roof will be waterproof.

The term ‘sod roof’ is somewhat misleading, as the active, water-tight element of the roof is birch bark. The main purpose of the sod is to hold the birch bark in place. "( Wikipedia)

.A sod roof has a lot of advantages: Firstly it is cheap, for the materials used for it, like birch bark and grass turf, are available in abundance.
Secondly: It's an ideal way of insulation in the cold and long Scandinavian winters.

But it requires a lot of time! No problem, for neighbours and friends are invited to join in a roofing party


    Sod roofs on farmhouses in Gudbrandsdal, Norway. Photo: Roede.

    This practice of covering roofs with birch bark and grass sods in Scandinavia, dates back to prehistory. The Vikings and People from the Middle Ages built their houses this way.This lasted until the beginning of the 18th century. Gradually houses in towns were built with tiled roofs and sod roofs almost disappeared, This was considered to be a threat  to ancient traditions. This caused a general revival of vernacular traditions, including these sod roofs.


    Mountain lodges and holiday homes with sod roofs became very popular. Open air museums like Maihaugen in Lillehammer, and reservations all over Norway, contributed to a better knowledge of the ancient culture of Norway and the rest of Scandinavia.

    Røros, old mining town

    Røros, old mining town.

     Isn't it wonderful to have flowers on your house?

    From these reservations, sod roofs have begun to reappear as an alternative to modern materials. The more recent idea of the green roof is developed independently from the traditional sod roof, but could benefit from the experience gathered during hundreds of years in Scandinavia.

    Birch bark

    Doukhobor house in Yefremovka, Georgia, with a sod roof.

    Birch bark is important for a sod roof, for it is strong, water-resistant and soil-resistant enough to last for generations, although 30 years was considered the normal lifespan of a sod roof in most places. Birch is common everywhere in Northern Europe, and its bark is easily stripped from the trunk in spring or early summer, while the sap is running.

    "Bark has to be weighted down with a heavier material to prevent it  from curling or blowing away. Therefore sod is used and this  has an additional advantage because it is an insulator.

     The first layer of sod was traditionally placed with the grass down, as the wilted grass would protect the bark from acid humus and act as a drain. The grass of the second layer faced upwards to establish a solid surface. Grass roots would eventually permeate the bottom layer to create one solid structure. The finished roof would in time look just like a flower-studded meadow. "( Wikipedia)

    With thanks to Denise Nesbitt,  who created ABC, and Roger, who took over from her. For more interesting ABC posts click on the logo in the sidebar. This week we are looking for words beginning with  S.