Monday, April 29, 2013

Five Herbs almost for Free......

Boost your Health in Spring

nettle - early spring.

Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica): In the beginning of spring arrive the first nettle sprouts from the soil. Those first sprouts are especially filled with nutrition and energy. The herb contains large quantities of zinc, which is important for the production of insulin and sex hormones. It contains also much iron, which women are often deficient in - and this can cause anemia and fatigue. Furthermore the herb  has much beta-carotene, B- and C-vitamin, Calsium, Potassium, Silica, and Sodium. The parts above ground of the nettle are used in herbal medicine, typical for women for the nutitrious qualitites. They also work diuretic and mildly blood sugar-regulating.

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis): has a calming effect on the nervous system and is used in the treatment of stress and insomnia.

Peppermint (Mentha x piperita): is a wellknown ancient medicinal herb, which through centuries was used against stomach problems and nausea. It is also an excellent cure for influenza and colds. It stimulates the circulation - and at the same time it increases the blood flow to the brain and clears the mind.

Ground Elder (Aegopodium podagraria) with the many names is a great edible plant of all time. Most people are irritated by it because it spreads very quickly, but both leaves and flowers can be used in cooking. The leaves are good in salad, soups and vegetable dishes. The flowers are fine as a mix in salad. The leaves can also be used as a green touch in juice and smoothies. The young sprouts taste best. Ground elder is basic, rich in minerals and it is said to be detoxifying, which makes it especially good in joint problems.


Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale): The Dandelion contains almost double as much A- vitamin as spinach, which else is known for its large content of A-vitamin. The Dandelion-leaves taste bitter and stimulate the liver and the digestion. Pluck the fine leaves and chop them finely for salad,  put them in vegetable dishes or brew a tea. The flowers can be used as a decoration in salads and desserts. The Dandelion is used in nature medicine to cleanse the blood and to improve the work of the liver and the bile. The Dandelion contains much potassium and many good vitamins and minerals.


source: Sunde tips, Caroline Fibæk, Urt din Sundhed op, FEMINA.
photo: grethe bachmann

Sunday, April 28, 2013

What Children say -

"I don't fink my pyfon cares about this wittle wabbit...."
Wittle Wabbits
A little girl walks into a pet shop and asks in the sweetest little lisp,
"Excuthe me, mithter, do you keep wittle wabbits?" And the shopkeeper bends way down and puts his hands on his knees so that he's on her level, and asks, "Do you want a wittle white wabby or a soft and fuwwy bwack wabby? Or maybe one like that cute wittle bwown wabby over there?"
She in turn puts her hands on her knees, leans forward and says in a quiet little voice,
"I don't fink my pyfon weally cares."

photo market place : gb

Monday, April 22, 2013

 If you are interested in eagles!

There's a camera in a nest of the white-tailed eagle in Denmark, there is also a kid now.



Thursday, April 18, 2013

A Lake, a brown Forest, a Murder, a River with Trouts..........

Off we go under a blue sky.
I hadn't been out in the countryside for fourteen days, this time and this tour was on Saturday 6th of April in Mid Jutland,  one of the last days of this winter. I'm sure. The last two days from the 15th of April , have been higher in temperatures after a very cold period. It is so strange that it changes from below zero till 18 degrees celsius. Strange. But don't go back to the cold, please! Let's get some spring.....
6th of April - here you see - no snow, but brown shades.

On the 6th of April was still a thin layer of ice on the lakes and a little snow on the nortside of the hills. But the ice and the snow must now be quite gone  here on the 16th of April. Fortunately. Not just for us humans, but also for the birds. They have been waiting. These days happens an amazing bird migration on the wellknown places. The birds of prey have been awaiting a warm wind for their flight.

The winter has been too long for all of us. So they say everywhere, in the newspapers, in the street, among friends. We long so much for summer. Some go south and come home, still waiting for summer. People go out into their gardens doing a little work, but the soil is still too frozen....

Spring comes and summer comes every year. No matter how beautiful a winter landscape can be, then we'll not keep it all year. We'll forget the snow and the ice until next time. So is it.

On the 6th of april :
The sky was a perfect porcelaine blue when we left that day. The clouds were thick as whipped cream. We drove across the new bridge crossing the Gudenaa -valley to Bølling lake,

Bølling lake- a little layer of thin ice.

Bølling lake

 - this place might be fine in the summer period, There are many paths around the lake.

Bølling Sø
Naturstyrelsen (Nature management) established a lake here in 2005, surrounded by fields, meadows, pastures and thicket. These areas are protected in order to create a pretty and varied landscape for the benefit of both humans and nature. The new lake was established in a large hollow in the landscape where the rests of the original lake was, until it was drained in the 1870s. Here is now a rich plant- and animal life - and it is an extremely interesting place when it comes to archaeology.  Here were once found two bog mummies, the wellknown Tollundman and the Elling girl, (Silkeborg Museum) and another interesting find were two small amber figures which might have been toys for a child.(National Museum). There are still on-going excavations in the district.  The prehistoric story about this place is a very long one, which shall not be told here, but if you are someone, who is interested in European /Danish prehistoric time, then you can find some material on the site:  www.  Here is also an English site.

Klode M­øll­e
The next place on our little tour in the country was Klode Mølle. In order to take a walk in the forest. Did you ever see a completely brown forest? Here it was. But the forest lake was nice and blue with a little ice. The tour through the forest ended in mud. We had forced a small brook with a homemade fragile bridge. Yes, it was necessary to use the bridge. Although the water was not deep, the bottom was deep. I would not end up as a bog mummy . So we forced the bridge. But later we had to go back anyway. Ice and mud and deep holes. Better luck next time.

Klode Mølle, the forest lake

Klode Mølle, the forest

Klode Mølle (water mill) was founded 1­596­ and abandoned in 1­872. Nearby was the old Engesvang church which was desolated during the Black Death and later broken down. The brook in the forest comes from Bølling lake. There are many historic letters from the 1400s and up. The name Klode possibly means j­ord­kno­ld (= lump of earth). Klosterlund Museum. The little house upon the hill in the forest is a museum for the peat industry and for the prehistoric Klosterlund settlement.

Klosterlund Museum

The Murder in Klode Mølle: 
A sailorman Niels Pedersen came from the north of Jutland on his way to Flensborg and went into the mill and guest house Klode Mølle to await a lift to Holstein. In the night he assaulted the miller and his wife. She  recovered later from her bad wounds, but her husband, the miller Niels Jørgensen, was killed on the spot. The murderer took flight towards the town Herning, where he asked for the road to Tønder in southern part of Jutland. People told that his right arm was filled with blood. Four men from the district went southwest towards Tønder to find him, and when they arrived in the small town Sønder Omme, they met a man who told them that the murderer was in town, but he escaped, and the men followed him south, until they after a long pursuit reached the town Husum, where they captured the Niels Pedersen and brought him back to the High Thing in Viborg. He confessed to the murder and had his conviction. He was judged to have his right hand cut off, then his head, and then have his body put upon the wheel, his head and hand put upon a pole above his body. During the trial was discovered that Niels Pedersen had committed another murder in one of his travels. He had strangled a man with his cravat, because he had threatened to report him, since he had avoided to sign up as soldier. In his confession Niels Pedersen admitted that he also wanted to kill the miller's wife because he wanted to get hold of the money and values he might find. The murdered miller Niels Jørgensen was buried at Kragelund cemetary, where was found a big, flat sandstone on the north side of the church in the 1800s, but it crumbled away soon after the discovery.

a view to the lake from the forest path.

the bridge across the brook,  yes there was a deep hole!

Karup Aa
And then we came to Karup Aa at a place called Skygge, where this legendary river begins its existence. This would be a fine place to visit in summer. The water stream is fast here, the river has many fine bends, and there is probably a lot to see on a summer's day. The salmon is in peace for me, but I like just to see it standing there against the stream down in the deep water. Karup Aa is known as a very fine fishing river.

Karup Aa has its outlet in Skive fjord. A stretch between Karup and Hagebro was listed in 1964, and the whole stretch from Karup till the town Skive is now EU-habitat area. The place where the river begins, Skygge, is northwest of Engesvang, so we are not far away from Bølling lake and Klode mølle. I love to see this river with all its fine bends, it is so great to see a river, which has not been changed into a canal, but this would never happen to the legendary water stream. And it is legendary among anglers. Any angler who knows this river gets starry eyes when he babbles on about his happy fishing days at Karup Aa - and his stay at the equal legendary Hagebro kro with stuffed record-salmons in glass boxes and lots of pictures upon the walls of happy anglers brandishing their finest catch. My father became blissful,whenever he was talking about his childhood's river, Karup Aa.

I don't know if you can see the "Høl". That's where the trout has its hiding place.

Høl  are the deep places in water streams which alternates between low places called stryg. On my photo there is a høl, but it goes down under the brink (which you cannot see) to the left, where it has begun eroding the earth below the country road. They will probably fix the eroding in order to secure the road, but they will not damage the river.  A høl is a perfect hiding place for a trout.

there is still a little snow on the brink. 
the river continues on the other side of the road with a heath behind. A fine place to visit in the summer...

1400s frescoes. It must be a bird with two baby-birds, don't you think?

Add caption

On our way home we visited a church with some fine and also funny frescoes. The sky was beginning to grow thick of something. Snow or rain. I would love to see some rain soon. I like to take a walk in the rain.
I always remember the scene with  Gene Kelly in "Singin in the Rain?" One of the fine scenes in film history.

See you later in the countryside. I hope it will be on a spring day.

photo Silkeborg district 6 April 2013: grethe bachmann

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Fish keeps the brain sharp ....

News about Health

New studies from USA have concluded that fish keeps the brain sharp. It is not news that fish keeps the brain sharp however, it is the way we prepare our fish, which makes the difference in relation to prevent dementia. If you eat baked or cooked fish at least once a week, you'll have a five times lesser risc of developing Alzheimer's demens - over a five year period. The test from USA has proved that persons who did eat baked or cooked fish at least once a week, had more grey mass in the regions of the brain, which are involved in memory and learning. The test persons who had fried fish, had in return seemingly no protection against the feared disease.

source: Nyt om sundhed; Søndags Sundhedspanel, Kvindemagasinet Søndag, 2012.

photo 11 March 2007: angler at Djursland's coast, grethe bachmann

Thursday, April 04, 2013

The Raven is a Clever Bird....

The raven might be the brightest of all birds , the myths about it are manifold. The raven was the messenger of the Nordic god Odin -  it was also aboard Noahs Ark, from where it was sent out to find land after the Flood.

After being almost extinct in Denmark for about 100 years the raven has now taken the old land in possession. The raven has a weight of about 1 1/2 kilo and a wing span of about 1 1/2, which means that it is the largest passerine in Europe. When you see the raven from a distance it looks as if it is black as coal, but if you look closer the plumage is more metal shining with a bluish sheen and greenish hues. The older the bird is the more metal shining feathers.

 A scientist and photographer had made a photo hide in the late winter, where the birds really need some food, and he had put out some baits for his models, the birds of prey and the crows. The first hungry birds were the crows, then came the buzzards and the seagulls. Suddenly came the golden eagle - and then he really got busy with his camera. It is rare to be that close to one of the great eagles.

But the raven kept away from the hide, it had discovered that someone was sitting inside under these camouflage nets. The guy had been there an hour before sunrise in order to "fool" the birds, but the black bird had fooled him instead. All the other birds were munching away, while the ravens were hovering above the feeding site and the photo hide shouting its krårk, which can be heard far and wide. He never got his close-up of the raven. His opinion is that the raven is the only bird whom he suspects being able to reason and figure things out.

In the Nordic mythology Odin used the ravens Hugin and Munin as observers. Hugin was the thought and Munin was the remembrance. This was a thousand years ago and there was a great deal of respect around the raven back then. It was a symbol of power, sharp senses and wisdom. Before Dannebrog came down from the sky in 1219 as the oldest national flag in the world, the Danes used the Raven Banner, a red cloth with two black ravens representing the national symbol of the Danes. The raven was a sacred bird.

Yggdrasil and ravens, Silkeborg Museum
Odin depict on a helmet, 7. century. wikipedia.

From the middle of the 1800s the view of nature changed in Denmark, and the raven was brought down with it. Together with raptors and largely all carnivors the raven was excommunicated and violently pursued. The wise black bird was virtually eradicated in the Danish nature, and it has not come back to its old land until the latest decades. But it came back in honor and dignity!  The Danish breeding population of ravens is today more than 1000 pairs and there is probably place and food enough for twice as many.

The raven, the raptors and other carnivors were in the 1800s indirectly victims of some high political changes, which contributed to feed a new approach in many Danes. The time of the land reclamation had taken off . A large part of the Jutland heath was cultivated, and furthermore came the comprehensive drainage of the "useless" wet areas. The new view of nature divided birds and animals in vermins, who had to be killed and useful game who had to be protected at any price. It was a kind of household philosophy. Raptors, ravens and other predators were shot, caught in traps, poisoned and had their nests destroyed. Shooting prizes were given for dead and unwanted birds and mammals. During only half a century several species of raptors were extinct in Denmark - and the raven held barely out.

The pheasant from Southeast Asia had an impact on the raven and the raptors, when this colourful fowl was introduced in Denmark as a hunting object in the 1800s. The hatred grew of the species who ventured to eat some meat now and then, and the omnivorous raven took of course a dead or wounded pheasant, if it got the chance. The raven has a secondary job in the renovation of nature.

In the 1950s were as far as known only about 10 pair of ravens in Denmark, most of the nests were in the southern part of Jutland - and it was from here the raven spread up through Jutland. It is now breeding in the main land of Jutland except in the outernest dunes at the west coast. The ancient bird of the Nordic gods has also won a terrain on the Isles, but it is shy and sceptical everywhere. It might take generations for it to get the distrust out of the body and achieve the confidence in the most dangerous mammal on earth, Man.

Ravn til Gavn. Som sendebud og sladrehank, Jan Skriver, Natur og Miljø, nr. 1, 2013, Danmarks Naturfredningsforening

photos of ravens: grethe bachmann, Vilsted sø, 2009. 
photo: Silkeborg Museum: stig bachmann nielsen, 

I have found the most wonderful Japanese blog about ravens and crows. If you are interested try to see this: ravens-of-japanese-myth

Grethe ´)

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Turmeric is a Painkiller...

 News about Health

turmeric from: Den store Danske

We use the turmeric powder to give rice dishes a yellow and colourful look - and this spice is the prominent part of curry mixtures. It is also called Indian saffron and was used as a substitute for this more expensive spice. Turmeric was also used as a dye for cloth and upon the skin - and still today the buddhistmonks' pretty yellow dresses are dyed with turmeric.

turmeric from: wikipedia

New research shows that the medical plant Turmeric is highly interesting. The content of the yellow dye, curcumin, is both a strong antibiotic and especially a strong painkiller. An Indian study has shown that 2 gram curcumin daily has the same painkilling effect as 400 mg ibuprofen. Turmeric's side effect is that it strengthens the liver and the immune system - which is a further benefit. 

Turmeric = Danish: Gurkemeje

Source: Nyt om din sundhed,  Kvindemagasin Søndag, 2012.