Weekly Photo Challenge: My 2012 in Pictures

The last Weekly Photo Challenge in 2012 is, not surprisingly, the reminiscence of the whole year. I chose for you the views of Prague (mostly), places that I visited, actions that happened there.

In January I visited Vyšehrad, place with beautiful atmosphere any time a day, on the shot you see rotunda of St. Martin from 11th century, one of the oldest churches in Prague. More about Vyšehrad and its famouse cemetery you can read here.

Vyšehrad

Vyšehrad

February is a month for carnival and Mardi Grass celebration. This shot was taken in Karlín, where the celebrations took place at the main square around the church. More about Karlín you can find here.

Smíchov

Smíchov

Spring was coming and at the small garden by the Faust house in Prague (you don’t know who is Faust? Read more at wiki) yearly selling exhibition of alpine plants took place in March.

Faust

Faust house and alpine plants

You already read something about Prague subway in one of my previous posts, in April I visited it from the background and the experience was quite interesting. See trains in engine house on the next shot.

Metro

Metro

“It’s first of May the day of love”, that’s the beginning of poem May by Karel Hynek Mácha, a Czech romantic writer. His statue stands in the big public park Petřín and every first of May couples are coming to kiss under blossoming tree here and greet Mácha. The English translation of the whole poem you can read at this link. Warning: it doesn’t have a happy end!

Petřín

Petřín, the funicular at the background

At my blog you can read mostly about Prague city center, but there are big housing estates with block of flats around the city. Even there you can find parks and oases of nature, such as a farm called Toulcův dvůr with cows, horses, sheeps, and other domestic animals. I visited that place in June and on the shot you see the view from there.

Toulcův dvůr

Toulcův dvůr

Almost whole July I spent out of Prague, so this shot is from place called Czech Switzerland. It is at North Bohemia and the nature here is just stunning. You can hike there and admire the nature in its wildness. We were lucky, as the gulches on Kamenice river were opened after two years, when they were destroyed by big floods.

Tichá soutěska

Quiet gulch

August I spent travelling around country too. Kutná Hora, the second most important city in Czech Republic in our history. On the shot you see the St. Barbara cathedral and I wrote more about this place here.

St. Barbora cathedral in Kutná Hora

St. Barbora cathedral in Kutná Hora

Back to Prague, the famous John Lennon’s wall has been changing day to day, how it looked in September you can find on my shot.

Lennon

Lennon or Lemon?

Fall in Prague is really beautiful as you can check also here, my shot for October shows you St. Vitus cathedral, the most important church in our country, from a bit different perspective that we are used to look at.

Hrad

St. Vitus cathedral

Houses of Prague are full of house signs. People use to ask me why there is written “U” (U dvou slunců, U housliček, U prstenu, U kamenného zvonu, …) on the buildings. You can also find the “U” on my shot, where “U tří Turků” is written. The “U” means “beside” or “by”. Thus, the house is called House Beside three Turks, because of the three Turks heads on the facade. I plan to write more about house signs in Prague somewhere in future. Meanwhile, you can look at more house signs at my very first post here (bottom picture). That’s my shot for November.

TUrci

Turks

About December in Prague I wrote a lot, you can check all the posts and I also wrote about the tradition of nativity scenes. The last picture is from the famous church of Our Lady Victorious, where you can find the statue of Baby Infant Jesus (also on my list for next year posts). At the back of the church you can find shelves with figures of baby infant Jesus all over the worls but also small nativity scenes, like is the one on my shot. The creches are from South America (Salvador), and I love that simple style a lot.

Betlem

Betlem

I hope you enjoyed my 2012 tour and I hope we will meet next year, if not in Prague, then definitelly on my blog pages here :-).

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Your 2012 Best People or Animals

If you read properly the Challenge at Cee’s Challenge you find that you are supposed to post here your best shots from 2012 year. I decided that I will change the challenge for myself. I will not put here the best shots but the shots of my best people and animals. And as my most favorite and best people are my family, who would not like me putting their pictures on the blog, you will see now the shots of my most favorite animals. I hope you won’t mind this small cheating :-).

My most favorite animals are our small dogs, Tiffany and Hubert. We call them Fany and Bertik, respectively, and they are really beautiful and smart and beloved.

Fany is half an hour older and she is explorer, flegmatic, has her own head.

Fany just leaving for some garden exploration

Fany just leaving for some garden exploration

Bertik is a sweetheart, very responsible, loves hugging, needs to have everyone (specially Fany) under control, looks like embryo when sleeping.

Betrik chceking if someone is coming to caress him

Bertik checking if someone is coming to caress him

They love each other, always kiss in the morning.

Sleeping on the sun and big fans on the petanquie tournament (unfortunatelly our team lost ...)

Sleeping on the sun and big fans on the petanque tournament (unfortunatelly, our team lost …)

The other important animal family, which is stupendously popular not only in our family but all over the Czech Republic, is the gorilla’s family in Prague ZOO. The family is very famous specially due to the project Big brother, where the cameras were installed at gorrilla’s place and till then we can watch them 24 hours a day. The Big brother show lasted few months and Richard (alphamale) won, but fortunatelly the cameras have stayed and we can still watch them on internet here.

Richard, head of the family, year 2003

Richard, head of the family, year 2006

The family consists of the head male Richard and his wifes – Kijivu, Kamba, Shinda and Bikira. Few days ago (Dec 22, 2012) Kijivu gave birth to her fourth child, looks like it is a third boy. Kijivu is very succesfull mother. Her first child, girl Moja, was born in 2004 and from the end of the last year she lives in a new family in Cabarceno ZOO in Spain. In fact she’s expecting a baby around March (we are waiting when the camera will be installed in Cabarceno? :-)). Moja is a real star in our country, the first gorrilla baby born in our ZOO.

Moja, two years old, year 2006

Moja, two years old, year 2006

The next baby born was in 2007 year, mother was Kamba, but baby died after the birth and the life of Kamba was endangered as well. That’s why there is prepared big team of vets and also human doctors and obstetricians now, as Kamba should give birth to a new baby any day and we are afraid of her.

The third child was Tatu, who was a cute and beautiful boy, unfortunatelly he died by accident in July 2012 and it was a big tragedy. Here you can find a picture of new born Tatu, mother Kijivu and sister Moja.

Tatu, about one year old, 2007

Tatu, about one year old, 2007

The third Kijivu’s baby is Kiburi, the only baby in our gorrilla family till the last week. Kiburi is a sweet boy, you can see him in a short movie from the beginning of 2012 year, his older brother Tatu is also seen there, at the beginning and at the end of the shot.

Kiburi, age about 2 years, 2012

Kiburi, age about 2 years, 2012

The next baby was Tano, but unfortunatelly his mother Bikira was not able to take care of him, as she didn’t grow up in a happy gorrilla’s family (she came to Prague only 2 years ago), so now Tano lives in Germany in gorrilla’s kindergarten, but he looks very happy there. See the gallery here and very funny movie shot here.

From Dec 22 we have a new baby born, you must check the movie here, it’s really cute! And also lots of pictures on that page. I will visit ZOO in short time, to have my own shots :-).

Kijivu in expectation, Dec 3, 2012

Kijivu in expectation, Dec 3, 2012

Now we keep our fingers crossed for Kamba and her new baby that both of them would happily survive the birth!

Travel theme: Festive

Theme Festive for Travel theme during advent time. What should I put in? I already wrote about Prague Nativity scenes, Christmas Markets at the Old Town, Christmas Crafts Markets and Czech Christmas Ornaments. What should I write more about Christmas? I decided to go for another Festive theme. In September I was in Rome and by coincidence I saw some festival there, which looked strange and funny for me. Here are the pictures from this feast. At Piazza Venezia we met a group of strange dressed gentlemen, they had hats decorated with feathers from fowls tails, some special traditional and honorable uniform. The Mayor of Rome was also present.

Men with feathers hats

Men with feathers hats

Then we walked to Colosseum, and listened to some music we saw big group of musicians in uniformas coming around us.

"Red" musicians

“Red” musicians

And the third, soldiers with fowls tails on the hats were coming, performing music, and then dancing special and short dance (therefore I didn’t managed to make movie with it :-(), after which they left to Colosseum direction.

tails singers and dancers

Fowls tails singers and dancers

So that was my festive meeting with “fowls tails” celebration in Rome.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Surprise

During my recent visit of winter Stockholm I wanted to enjoy the trip as much as possible. So I decided to look at everything like a child, like I see it for the first time and everything surprised me. Now I will share some of my surprises with you, according to the Weekly Photo Challenge.

It already started in the airplane, where we met another plane above the clouds, and we had to cross our journeys, so the other airplane had to descend a bit and then it went close under us.

Finnair below our plain

Finnair below our plain

The other surprise was, how soon there is a dark in winter and how much snow lays on the streets of the city (yes, we also had some snow in Prague, but there was much more). I believe that I was not the only one suprprised by this, as you can see from the next picture.

Bikes covered with snow

Bikes covered with snow

Another big but nice shock came when we entered the subway. I have heard that Stockholm has nice subway stations, but this one really surprised me, nothing special on the ground, but down there was an art gallery.

Kusträdgården subway station in Stockholm

Kusträdgården subway station in Stockholm

Within our trip we visited a lot of museums, and one was the museum of Vasa ship, the warship, that sank on her very first voyage just a few feets from the harbour. 333 years later it was taken from the water and now you can see it in the museum. Vasa brought lots of surprises, first the unexpected sinking and then the almost intact state in which it was taken from the water.

Vasa ship

Vasa ship

And very close to Vasa Museum there are another museums, Junibacken at one side, I wrote about this one at my previous post, and Spiritmuseum on the other. Spiritmuseum is quite small, it has very nice exposition of Absolut Art Gallery (I always loved the Absolut commercials). You can enjoy here a quiz: in which movie which spirit played it’s role (“shake don’t stir”), and also the room which will show you the morning of drunken man on screen. But what surprised me most were “smelling” machines, where you can “pump” and smell the ingrediences of spirits, enjoy the smells of herbs, fruits, but also spirits itself.

Smelling machine in Spirit museum

Smelling machine in Spirit museum

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

At this very special day I would love to wish you Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

I would love to thank you all for stopping by at my blog, for your likes and comments. My special thanks belong to subscribers who pushed the Follow button. I hope we will spent another beautiful year with our posts and photos.

Thanks, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013 to you all

Katy

Big thanks and the best wishes for the coming year

Big thanks and the best wishes for the coming year

My Post about Christmas:
PragueChristmasSKOI

Betlémy – nativity scenes
Christmas Market in Prague Old Town
Christmas Crafts Markets in Prague
Czech Christmas Ornaments (Rautis)
Traditional Gingerbreads
Christmas Wish 2012
Family Tradition – Fire-crackers

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Things that make you happy

I believe that if you can enjoy the world as it is, when you don’t accept everything as normal, but as something special, then you always can find something that makes you happy anywhere. Here I will share just a few pics that make me feel good and happy.

The first shot was taken in Prague’s New World, not far from Prague Castle. I love the creativity on it, I love the atmosphere of the picture.

"Extended" sign at the New World in Castle District area

“Extended” sign at the New World in Castle District area

When I am in St. Vitus cathedral at Prague Castle and the sun shines, I always feel amazed by the colors lights coming through the stained glass windows.

Stained glass window in St. Vitus Cathedral

Stained glass window in St. Vitus Cathedral

In Old Royal Palace at Prague Castle I am always impressed by the creativity of office clerks, who decorated even the books full of laws and propriety ownership like these ones. Detail from this library was also used for my previous Cee’s Challenge here.

Old law books in Prague Royal Palace

Old law books in Prague Royal Palace

In Prague’s New Town I love the surrounding of Wenceslass Square, specially old Franciscan Garden with roses and also Wenceslass Square itself, as in the middle of it you can see colorful flowers.

Franciscan Garden by Wenceslass Square and flowers stright on the Wenceslass Square

Franciscan Garden by Wenceslass Square and flowers stright on the Wenceslass Square

To be more personal, the happiest moments are brought to me by my family and also by our pet family members.

Our family, Tabinka - the progenitor top right, her chioldren Tiffany and Hubert as babies top big, grown up in the middle and the next generation, Tiffany's babies bottom big

Our family, Tabinka – the progenitor top right, her children Tiffany and Hubert as babies top big, grown up in the middle and the next generation, Tiffany’s babies bottom big

Being adult I also enjoy my doll collection, doing the dresses for them and making pictures.

Lovely Tonner dolls

Lovely Tonner dolls

Last but not least is my cup of coffee, prepared by someone who likes and enjoys his work, who wants to make life better by small addition :-).

There is swan in my coffee!

Look, there is a swan in my coffee!

Weekly Image Of Life: Children And Their Gifts

In Prague and Czech Republic you can find lot of attractions for children, we have beautiful ZOO and other activities, which families can enjoy.  But as I just came back from Sweden, for todays weekly image of life I chose the world of Astrid Lindgren, Swedish author of childrens books, whose books are brilliant and I grow up with Pippi and Children from Bullerbyn, I lived in robbers castle with Ronja and Birk or at the roofs of Stockholm with Karlsson. My first detective steps were made with Kalle Blomkvist, the young forerunner of Mikael Blomkvist from Stieg Larsson Millenium books. Astrid Lindgren was my favorite author and I believe it was because the child in her never grown up, see on shot from sweden.se.

Photo of Astrid LIndgren from Sweden.se

Photo of Astrid LIndgren from Sweden.se

In Sweden you can find (at least) two museums dedicated to Astrid, one is in Vimmerby, the city where Astrid and most of her character lived, and the second one is in Stockholm, at Djurgården Island, where a lot of museums are.

AL book at Vimmerby park

AL book at Vimmerby park

Village Vimmerby is in the South Sweden, not far from the highway from Stockholm to Malmö, and big part of it is the World of Astrid Lindgren’s park. You can meet there all your favorites characters from Astrid’s books, visit small cities, play lot of games, watch performances like this one from Emil’s home at Lönneberga.

The walk throug the village is very nice, lot of small buildings and colors all around.

Colorful houses at VImmerby park

Colorful houses at Vimmerby park

And when you are tired of walking, visit the interiors,

You want to visit Pippy?

You want to visit Pippi?

or take a boat …

Pram competition, who will be first at the other side?

Pram competition, who will be first at the other side?

sorry, I ment the boat with Pippi :-).

Pippy on the boat

Pippi on the boat

If the Vimmerby is too far for you and you just came to see Stockholm, then you can’t miss museum Junibacken, perfect place for families and Astrid Lindgren lovers. At the entrance you will find a stroller park :-).

Stroller park

Stroller park

Behind the entrance is a playground area, where children can enjoy small houses or castles.

Entrance hall

Playground hall

After visiting the playground area you go for a train/cabin, which takes you through the beautiful world around villages and above the roofs, through the mouse hole, you are the onlooker of stories that happen around you.

Cabin and the villages around

Cabin and the villages around

The tour is like a short performance, for example this one with Ronja and Birk.

After the challenging trip you can go to the dining room and choose from dishes and sweets in colorful area.

DIning room

Dining room

And finally the place that cannot be forgotten, the place where everyone can find the right tallness :-).

Bathroom for everyone

Bathroom for everyone

I hope you enjoyed the tour through the world of Astrid Lindgren, woman, that stayed a child in her heart, had brilliant fantasy and who was a big inspiration for children, as well for me.

I really like how Swedish people enjoys children games, so the last short video is from dancing around the Christmas tree at Skansen, sorry for the sound, really not good quality, but the best I have now :-).

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