Thursday 31 December 2009

A Lovely Break

(Warning – very long post.)

I’ve been having a lovely break since Christmas.  It’s hard to believe that it was nearly a week ago.

Our Christmas was different this year as it was the first time ever that I haven’t had Christmas lunch with my parents.  We still got to see everyone, which was the main thing.  The weather was pleasantly cool and we had gentle soaking rain all day.

Lunch was at Mick’s sister’s place and despite the rain we ate outside under gazebos.  There was no fear of our food getting wet as we were escorted to the table by these gorgeous “brolly dollies”.


Santa was very kind to Mick and I.  We have a tiny laptop to take travelling on the bike.  Now we won’t be having to look for libraries and internet cafes.  Very handy.

I was spoilt by my Mum.  She made me this beautiful collection. 


Now, I maybe gave a slight hint a few months ago like “Mum, can you please make me some covered coat hangers for Christmas?”… and maybe I reinforced this suggestion by delivering some old timber hangers shortly thereafter that I had found in an op shop.

Dad also spoilt me with this exquisite, tiny brooch. It is only about an inch from wing tip to wing tip.


I had to go and ask the jewellers how to use it, as it just has a couple of little pins on the back.  The body is actually a spring, you squeeze the wings together, which opens the clips and it grips your garment as you release the wings.  How clever.  I’ve always loved brooches, so this is a lovely addition to the collection.

Boxing Day is our lazy day.  We normally sit (or lie) on the verandah reading our Christmas books.  This year it was cool and wet, so we sat around the lounge room reading our Christmas books and doing sweet nothing.  We so look forward to our Boxing Day together.

After that Mick had to go back to work.  He has tomorrow off, and then once again, back to work.

I’ve  been very lazy.  I’ve done a little work in the office, but generally I’ve just lazed about and read a lot of blogs.  I had grand plans of doing lots in this break, but very little has eventuated. The weather has been relatively cool, which has been pleasant.

Sewing was high on my list of priorities, and after the first couple of days of doing nothing I did make a few things.  Nothing of any consequence though.

Spotlight had a special on all their fat quarters and a bought a few.  I then made this “Poochie Bag” from Happy Zombie’s tutorial.  It takes just three fat quarters.  I was quite pleased with how it turned out. 


There was a strip left of the fabrics, so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to make a fabric basket from Pink Penquin’s tutorial.  Both these patterns had been on my “To Do” list for quite a while. 

I wanted to use linen on the basket, but as I only have a limited supply (the skirt I bought at the op shop) I had to finish making my placemats first. Therefore, I made a fabric basket to match my sewing machine cover and mat.  I’m sure it will be useful for something.  It turned out really well.


So,  before I could make the second basket I finished making the other two placemats and matching coasters. I made the first ones back here.


Now I was on a roll.  The second fabric basket is very sweet.  Another fat quarter fabric is used for the lining.


There is still a tiny bit of each of the main fat quarters left, quite a bit of the pink lining and still a bit of the op shop skirt.  I’m pretty sure there is enough of each to make a matching journal cover from Bloom’s tutorial


However, when I did the last stitch on the fabric basket my machine gave a big clunk and bent the needle.  Not good. 


I just turned it off and left it till later.  When I had a closer look, there is a rubbing noise in the bobbin housing.  Mick thinks something may be bent.  I now have to see if my wonderful sewing machine doctor is around and let him have a look at it. And it had been sewing so well up till then.  Fortunately, I still have my little Stella that I can use….or I may have to get out some hand sewing.

Today I went to town and called in to Spotlight to buy some more machine needles.  Just as I was leaving an announcement came over the speaker.  As a result I spent an extra $2.70 and came home with all this:


All Christmas decorations at 10c each for 10 minutes!  At the front are glass baubles that you decorate yourself.  I plan to fill some with thread offcuts and fabric crumbs.  Not something I would pay lots of money for, but at 10c!  Also, the Styrofoam balls are ready to decorate with fabric.  I haven’t made these for years, but it could be fun with the new fabrics out.  There are also rolls of ribbon and lots of baubles to make a wreath.  These wreaths have me fascinated, but being ikey like I am, I wasn’t going to make one if it was going to cost heaps.  I think I’ll have lots of fun.  Now…….. where to store them.

Tonight we are off to a New Year’s Eve party with a group of our friends.  It’s been nice this year letting someone else do all the hard work. (That’s very slack of me, isn’t it!)  The dress up theme is the era of your vehicle (we are all members of the Historic Car Club).  Mick will just wear his Goodies T-Shirt for the 70s for his Rickman Honda motorcycle and as the only vehicle I actually own is the 2009 Subaru Forester, I’ll wear all clothes I have bought this year.  Maybe that’s cheating, but too bad. The kitchen has a lovely aroma at the moment as I’ve been roasting pumpkin in olive oil and garlic for a salad.  I could just sit and eat the pumpkin.

Have a wonderful New Year and see you next year!

Thursday 24 December 2009

One More Sleep

Well, we are nearly there……..the little tree is up, complete with special ornaments, the presents wrapped and the turkey has just come out of the oven, to be served cold tomorrow.  As usual, it always comes together in the end, although this year it has been much easier as we won’t be having everyone at our house.


We went in to the children’s service at church this evening and we really enjoyed the way the children are included in the service and are learning about the Christmas story.

This evening has been nice and quiet for us, sitting on the verandah in the cool, enjoying some prawns. 


This was the view from our back verandah a few days ago.  No, we didn’t get any rain that day, although we were lucky enough to be under a storm earlier in the week and received 17 mm – beautiful – you can already see the slightest green tinge and the house tanks are full.

Tomorrow we visit some friends for breakfast, then to my family for morning tea and then Mick’s family for lunch.  Hopefully, it will be a wet day, which would be the best Christmas present possible.

I wish everyone out there in blogland a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year.

Sunday 13 December 2009

It’s Starting to Feel Like Christmas

I’ve been somewhat slow in getting into the Christmas spirit this year.  If anyone asks if I’m all organised I’ve been replying that “I’m in denial”!

However, yesterday was our work Christmas party and today was the Historic Car Club party, so I’m feeling a bit more in the spirit.  We won’t be having everyone at our house this year on Christmas day, but yesterday a couple of us dressed the table at the party venue and I used all my bits and bobs, so they didn’t just stay buried in a box this year, so that was nice.

Last night I finally made the decorations to give to my nieces, a little touch I like to do each year.  They ended up being more fiddly than I anticipated, but they didn’t turn out too bad.  They were just big enough to hold a Freddo Frog and Caramello Koala, which didn’t last long when received by the girls.


I’m blowed if I can find my box of felt.  I’ve looked in all the logical places to no avail.  This may be telling me something!  I did however find the red felt that I used, together with some green that I had forgotten I had.  I bought it for next to nothing at a garage sale at Grace Bros department store about 15 years ago.  It had been used in a display and is lovely wool. There is heaps of it.  I must keep it where I can find it again.

Anyway, onto today.  Mick decided that it would be a good idea to attend the party on “Olga” and that she should get in the swing of things, so we prettied her up a bit.  We received quite a few waves on the way into town.


Now that the parties are out of the way, we still have to do all our gift shopping – I’ve only bought two presents so far.   We normally have a big shopping morning before the Car Club party, but Mick had to work this morning. 

I did put up the tree this evening.  It is just a small table topper instead of the big one, but has some special decorations on it including my swap ornaments.  I’ll get a photo tomorrow.

Believe it or not, it will all come together before the big day and we will have a great time.

Tuesday 8 December 2009

Christmas Ornament Received

Today my Christmas Ornament arrived from Beccasaurus.  She has created the cutest gingerbread man who looks quite shocked that he has had a couple of bites taken out of him.  He is also accompanied by a little tree with sparkly decorations.


They will look lovely on our tree.  Thanks so much Bec.

Sunday 6 December 2009

What We’ve Been Up To

Yesterday was our last craft group meeting for the year and we celebrated with a delicious lunch at a local restaurant. Previously we have had the traditional kris kringle swap, but this year we each made a Christmas decoration for the swap.  There were some beautiful creations. I made this little birdie.  I’m liking red and white this year.


I received this sweet necklace.


There was lots of  talking and laughter, so it was just as well the restaurant was fairly quiet. 

When I got home, Mick asked if I’d taken any photos for my blog.  Oops, I just plum forgot.  I must have been talking too much. Fancy that!

During lunch, one of the ladies mentioned that the Millthorpe Markets were on today.  I’m so pleased she said something, as I would have forgotten all about them.  I went last year with a friend and thoroughly enjoyed them.  This year Mick wasn’t working so we both went up.

The Millthorpe Markets are only held once a year in the local showground to raise funds for the Primary School.  There is a great variety of stalls, about 200 in all. 


Lots of craft (more than any other markets around here),  bric-a-brac, food, you name it. The weather was perfect, so there was a big crowd.


We were sort of looking for Christmas presents, but we seemed to be the only recipients of purchases.

Mick wandered off, as I take too long, and spotted this booty.  He did well, and it was cheap as chips.


I was thrilled with this pattern.  It is printed in Australia, I’m guessing in the 40s.  I haven’t heard of the brand before and am amazed that it is printed in colour.  50c well spent!


I also found this necklace.  I’ve been looking for something in turquoise and I love this.  It is actually fashioned from an old fork.  They had lovely wind chimes as well.


And Mick, well his main score is this lovely old wind-up butterfly.  Isn’t it gorgeous.  It will go on display with his other old toys.


On a more serious note, two rather major fires started in our district on Friday afternoon with properties threatened.  Fortunately they are now under control.  Properties not too far from us were door knocked “just in case”.  Hopefully they will be fully extinguished soon as the weather is forecast to be in the high 30s with strong winds on Tuesday.  Not what you want with fires around.

Today is in the low 30s with just a breeze.  It is hot outside, but the verandahs are keeping the house cool.  Our house is built from corrugated iron, sort of in the style of a Queenslander, so it is good in the summer, no bricks to retain heat.

Just to close, it was full moon through the week.  My little point and shoot camera has very minimal zoom, but I was able to take this photo of the dramatic moon rise.


Tuesday 1 December 2009

Swap Sent and Loot

I have just received word that Bec, my swap partner has received her Christmas decoration.  I posted it off on Friday and she received in on Monday in Melbourne.  I’m impressed.

Anyway, this is what I sent off.  I thought Bec’s daughter shouldn’t miss out on the fun, so sent an extra little one for her.


Now, as promised, here is my booty from Braidwood.  Firstly, I added to my Christmas fabric stash with these cute little robins.


Then, there was this cute fabric with retro transport, which will go really well with a Michael Miller panel I have and will one day make a cute kid’s quilt.  The English seaside fabric is gorgeous.  Don’t ask me what I’ll do with it….probably just look at it.


Then there is some very cute yellow cowboy flannel.  Why did I buy it….I liked it.  What will I do with it?  I can just see me swanning around the house with yellow PJ pants next winter.  I know, I’m a dag,  but why not!


I haven’t opened the Jelly Roll yet.  I’m savouring the prettiness of it all wrapped up at the moment, but I’m sure temptation will get the better of me soon and I’ll have a bit of a peek.  Once again, I don’t know what I will do with it, but it is pretty.