Sunday, 5 February 2023

The Start of February

What a difference a week makes……

I had mentioned that my goals for this month were minimal, as we would be travelling.  Well……. that has now all changed.  Mick’s back has given him grief recently, and it is not recovered sufficiently for him to feel confident to travel overseas.  Therefore, at the last minute, we have cancelled our trip to New Zealand.  We are sad about it, but both know it was the right decision.

So now, I have more time to sew.  Yay!
Anyway, back to the last week.
I did make my pink Rainbow Scrap Challenge blocks.  I’m happy to tick that off my list.
On Wednesday I once again headed off to my new patchwork group.  This time I remembered to take a photo of the venue.  It is an old convent.  We are actually in a more modern wing.  The building was originally the family home of one of the pioneering families of Bathurst.  As the number of nuns has really dwindled, the property has been put up for sale, so we don’t know how long we will be able to use this venue for our stitching. It was called “St Josephs Mount”, but since the nuns left it has reverted to its original name of “Logan Brae”.

Not only have I joined the new patchwork group in town, I have joined a second stitching group.  This one isn’t specifically patchwork.  You can take whatever craft along that you like.  

I attending my first session of the second group on Friday morning.  Both groups are very friendly and welcoming.  It is so nice to be able to attend these groups mid week.

So what else did I stitch last week?
I did keep up with my 15 minutes each day. So that still works out that I have only missed one day this year.

Mostly, I just fiddle faddled with not a great deal to show. (Maybe I was preparing for a trip, rather than sewing.)
I have my first column of EPP for the Blue Quilt put together.  A good project to take to stitching.
I also finished off some more little butterfly magnets.
I’ve had some little scrap 30s fabric half inch hexies on their papers for a while, so stitched them into a flower.  I’ve no idea what I will do with it, but it will get added to something at some stage.  It’s cute anyway.
And today, I started fiddling with some crochet.  I have no crochet or knitting on the go at the moment and my plan was to get some nice wool in NZ. Now that has changed I dived into the stash.  I have some wool I want to make a rug from and am thinking of making lots of these long grannies from various colours and then playing with a layout.  Basically, making it up as I go along.  That way I don’t have to work out all my colours at this point.  I’ll think it over before I go too far with it.
Friday was Friday Night With Friends, hosted by Cheryll. I must say I didn’t do much on Friday night, but  I did stitch butterflies and EPP in the morning.  I think that will count.

The next thing to do is to start making some more stitching plans for the month, as it is a bit of a blank canvas at the moment.
We had a fun day out yesterday.
This weekend has seen the Mount Panorama racing circuit in Bathurst host the 12 Hour Endurance Race.  The race attracts some of the best international drivers. For the first time, we decided to go up and have a look, while they were doing their practice and qualifying.  The weather was perfect to be out and about.  Not too hot.

There were two major draw cards this year.  One was Valentino Rossi, who after being a world leading motorcycle racer, has now changed to racing GT motor cars.
The other was a Formula 1 race car doing some demonstration laps.  As a result there were record breaking crowds attending the event.  We’re glad we went along.

The race was on today.  We had the television on, to pop in every now and then to see how the race was going, and after twelve hours, it was a very exciting finish, with only a few seconds between the leading few cars.
Finally, today I attended some markets.

A couple of months ago some new “Makers and Growers Markets” have started up in the grounds of Logan Brae, where we have our patchwork days.  Our group was invited, at short notice, to have a stall.  Once again, the weather was perfect and the setting was pleasant.  They are still rather small, but there were some lovely stalls and a nice little crowd of visitors.
A few of us went along with a few bits and pieces to sell.  The primary reason was to promote the group and attract some additional members.  As a result we may have a few new ladies join in and we were also able to sell a few items.  I have a basket at home where random items I have made, just for the fun of it, have resided.  A couple have now moved on to new homes, which was nice.  We may go along next month as well and a few more ladies may contribute.  

I’m linking up with:

Wednesday, 1 February 2023

My Goals for February

Unlike January, my goals for this month are rather minimilist, as we will once again be travelling for most of the month.

My very simple goal this month is to make my Rainbow Scrap Challenge blocks. 

I will be making  the blocks for the black and white quilt as well as the split nine patch blocks.
The fabrics have been pulled ready to go.

HAND STITCHING
I have prepped some more of my EPP for the Blue Quilt.  The joining squares are ready to go.
They are all in order ready to start.  I don't think I'll get much done, but every little bit helps.

This is not going to happen this month, but I plan on keeping up while I am at home and who knows, I may get something done while travelling.  I will take some little project and do what I can.

Friday is Cheryll's get together for a night of stitching.  I should be able to join in this week.

And that's it.

In the meantime, I will enjoy playing the tourist.

I'm linking up over at Elm Street Quilts.  Pop over and see what the others plan for the month.

Tuesday, 31 January 2023

January Wrap Up

I can’t believe that we are already at the end of January.  At the rate we are going, it will be 2024 before we know it.

So how did I go with my goals for January?  Firstly to my stitching goals.

ONE MONTHLY GOAL
My goal was to have my Swoon quilt top completed, ready to add to the “To be Quilted Pile”.  
Tick.

RAINBOW SCRAP CHALLENGE
I completed my black and white blocks and started on some split nine patches.  I had considered working on a third project, but it didn’t happen.  I think I will stick with just the two, as there are so many other things I want to work on.

DONATION PROJECT
My plan was to make the little Winnie the Pooh quilt.
Another tick.

USE MONIQUE
The little donation quilt ended up being my first completed project using Monique.

HAND STITCHING
I wanted to make some more progress on my kitten cross stitch, which I did.  I can only work on it for short times as it is so hard to seen the light colours on the fabric.  I’ve finished most of the top left quadrant, so am looking forward to moving onto the next section.
I also ended up stitching all the butterfly antennae on my 2022 RSC quilt.

KNITTING OR CROCHET
I finished my socks.

UFO/WIP
Swoon was to fit the bill, but in the end my appliquéd butterflies also fell into this category.

FINISHED PROJECTS
My socks and the baby quilt both fit into this catergory.  

LEADER AND ENDER
Not a lot to show here, but there are lots of HST tidied up and some have been stitched together.  This will be a slow progress project.  Every little bit helps.

15 MINUTES A DAY
I managed to keep this up for every day except one.  So 30 out of 31.  I would have liked it to be 31 out of 31, but I’m still pleased with what I did.
On the non stitching front…….

READ A BOOK
Two were read.

TRY A NEW RECIPE
Two were tried.  One not so good, but the blueberry crumble was excellent.

HAVE A FUN DAY OUT
We ended up having two.
WALK
I have been walking most mornings before the day gets hot.  I have missed some days, but a good start.

MOTORCYCLING AND CARAVANNING
We knew that we wouldn’t get away in the van this month and motorcycling didn’t happen, partly because Mick did his back in and was not able to ride for a while, and we don’t tend to like riding in the heat.  Hopefully, later in the year we will do some.

In summary, I didn’t think I had done a great deal, but there is a bit there to show for it.  Mind you, being retired certainly helps.

I’m now looking forward to my plans for next month.

Monday, 30 January 2023

The Last Week of January

Our week has been rather quiet, which has been nice.  
We did have a short outing on Australia Day to visit the old gold mining village of Sofala for their markets.
We arrived fairly early, before the main crowds.  The weather was perfect for having a wander around.
There are some interesting old buildings and it was nice to see the little businesses open for trading, in addition to the markets themselves, which were only small, but had some nice stalls.
We caught up with some friends for a chat and had a nice morning tea.
The little second hand book store had all their books at $2 each, so of course we had a look.  I was very pleased with my haul of vintage titles.  It turned out that the Abbey Girl books are duplicates of ones I already have, but at that price it was worth the gamble, and to find two Mary Grant Bruce books at that price was quite rare.  Once again, they may be duplicates, but worth the gamble.  The Ethel Turner was a nice addition to my small collection of her titles.
I just liked the name of "Bruce of Boonderong Camp".  I sat down the other night and read it.  It is a Boy's Own type of story, published in 1920, set in Melbourne and outback Queensland.  It was a lighthearted, stereotypical naughty boy makes good story.  However, reading it over 100 years after it was written, there were quite a few parts that are now considered politically incorrect.  It makes you realise how much has changed in that time.
I finally found another new recipe to try out.  It is a very simple blueberry custard crumble.  You just make a thick custard, sprinkle it with blueberries and top with a crunchy crumble.  
Definitely a success, although not all that photogenic when plated up.  The recipe has been saved for future use.
On the stitching front, things have been rather social.  There has just this month been a new patchwork group start up in Bathurst, meeting each Wednesday at a lovely old building that was formerly a convent.  I popped along for a couple of hours last week.  There were ten of us present, some handstitching, some using their machines.  
I just took along some hand stitching and it was a good time to start embroidering the antennae on my applique butterflies from last year's Rainbow Scrap Challenge project.

No photos, but I joined in with the Chookshed Stitchers  for a Zoom get together or a little while on Saturday.  I was going to save embroidering the rest of my butterflies for next Wednesday, but ended up completing them all on Saturday.  It was lovely to catch up with the girls, quite a few of which will be together in just a couple of months.

I have continued to go into the sewing room for 15 minutes each day, except Australia Day, as after we went to Sofala we were at a neighbourhood barbecue. There isn’t a great deal to show for it at this stage, but every little bit helps. So I have missed just one day for January.  Not too bad.  

I'm going to link up with Kate at Life in Pieces.
In the garden, our elephant ears plant has decided to flower for us.
And, our little golden rain tree that we planted eighteen months ago, is growing nicely, now covered in yellow flowers and a few of the pretty seed pods that follow.
Mick went been out fishing at Oberon Dam with his brother and my brother on Sunday.  They had a lovely time, as the water was perfectly still.  They caught a few Redfin.  Hopefully they can get out again before long, if the weather is right.

To finish off, here are a couple more photos from my morning walks.