Monday 31 October 2011

Annual Play Date

One of my friends and I have a very special day out each year that NO ONE and NOTHING gets in the way of.  We visit the local open gardens and catch up on all the gossip.  You can seen previous years here and here.

This year we were joined by her two daughters, which was really nice.  I don’t even think that they were too bored with it all.

Most of the gardens had never been opened before, so it was worth going along.  The Rahamin Centre is a community ecological garden.  They had a great plant stall where I purchased lots of herbs, my tomatoes and some strawberries.

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The next garden has been established for only about 5 years.  The couple previously had a beautiful country garden on their property.

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There were still lots of rural elements.

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They have really made the most of their sloping site, the retaining wall still being a work in progress.

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I think this was my favourite garden for the day.

No day out is complete without a visit to Blair Athol. A rather grand garden.  Here we caught up with a friend visiting from Coonamble with their garden club.

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There seemed to be more vege gardens than previous years.  I always love seeing them.

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One of the new gardens was beautifully manicured and looked so lush with its green and white theme.  No flowers here.

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This was the most surprising garden, as it was just on a regular suburban block in one of the newer subdivisions.  Not what you would expect at all.

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Next we headed out of town to visit Mary Moody’s garden at Yetholme.  It hasn’t been open before either.  She said it wasn’t a show garden and it isn’t.  However, it is a lovely comfortable country garden around an older home.  We really enjoyed our visit.

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I loved the quirky vege patch.

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We were so lucky with the weather, but finally, during the last garden we visited we were rained on.  We still had a nice wander around.

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As you can gather, we had a great day out and can’t wait to see what next year brings.

Sunday 23 October 2011

Weekend Goings On

It has been a wonderful weekend here with nice, warm weather for a change.  The temperature actually reached 30 degrees C, somewhat of a shock after a week or so back.  It is so nice to not be feeling cold.

Yesterday I went along to my local stitching group, which was nice, as I’ve missed the last couple of get togethers.

Today I packed away my winter woollies and brought out the summer clothes.  It is the first time this spring that I have felt confident that the cold weather has finished.  I hope I am right.

This afternoon, while Mick watched bike racing and rugby on TV I made this little zippered pouch for one of the girls at work who is visiting the Big Apple soon.  I hope she likes it.

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I just love the New York fabric.  Unfortunately, all the London and Paris fabric had sold out by the time I discovered it.

Saturday 22 October 2011

Everything Old is New Again

Remember the bottle top trivet I found at Bingara the other day.

Well, I’ve just stumble upon a tutorial for a fabric one in the 12 Days of Christmas Blog Hop. 

Who’d a thunk it!

Sunday 16 October 2011

Birthday Girls

Tomorrow is my Mum’s birthday and my niece celebrates hers later in the week.  This proved to be a great excuse to get out the pretty china  and linen for afternoon tea.

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It was the first time we have used the Royal Doulton tea set I found  here last year.

I had fun making some birthday cake bunting.  So quick and easy.

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I think everyone enjoyed themselves and had plenty of yummy things to eat.  I certainly didn’t need much for dinner tonight.

Saturday 15 October 2011

More Collecting

Today I visited my favourite Church Fete that I’ve mentioned a few times before and we always seem to bring home a few treasures.  This time my favourite white elephant stall was down a bit on stock compared to previous years, but I still found a couple of things.

I have a few vintage egg cups and I love gollies, so was rather excited when I spotted this one.

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The other two items are just because they were cute.  I think the acorn would have originally been a sugar bowl with a lid and handle.

I was also a little excited when I spied these moulds.  I don’t collect jelly moulds, but seem to be getting quite a few lately. 

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I also picked up a few tatted doilies.  There were six that matched, but in different sizes.  It isn’t often that you see tatting. I couldn’t leave the lovely old tracing wheel (I already have a couple) and old curling irons are quite an unusual find.  Don’t ask me what I’ll do with them, because I’ve no idea.

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This diary was on the book stall.  I missed out on seeing the textiles section of the V & A while in London (it is being relocated to another building and won’t reopen until 2013 – very disappointing) so at least I can have a look at some of the items in here.

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So, while I’m doing a bit of show and tell, I’ll share my finds from our trip to Goondiwindi.

I found this little sandwich tray doiley at a country op shop.  It is in lovely condition, so I am thrilled with it.  I wonder if the lady who made it designed it herself, as the bottom writing is off centre.  It just adds to the charm.

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The following items were found in “Upcycled” at Bingara.  I know!  Another jelly mould and a cute cake tin.  The tiny spinning wheel pencil sharpener is for my Dad, seeing as he spins and is the Mr Fixit for spinning wheels around here.  The final item had me intrigued.  It was sitting on an old timber ironing board with a flat iron sitting on top of it.  I don’t know if it was designed as a mat for an iron, or just as a teapot stand.  It is a lovely old “make do and mend” item.  See the little bit of frayed edge.

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Now look closer.  What a clever idea.  It is quite old, as I pulled the bottle top out and it was for Leeds lemonade – remember that?  Not only is it an old variety, the lid is lined with cork.  I can’t remember that style of lid, so it is old.  It appears to be constructed by making individual bottle top covers and then sewing them together.  The back then has a triangular crocheted panel sewn to the top.

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I couldn’t believe it, when on the way home we called into a little craft shop and there was a bunch of grapes on the wall made using the exact same technique, but with thinner crochet thread and a felt backing.  To have never seen the technique and then to see it twice on the same weekend is quite amazing.  I’m glad I found the old version.

Back on the home front, Mick has started slashing our paddock today.  We don’t have any sheep on the place at the moment to keep the grass down, so we need to reduce the fire risk for the summer. 

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We don’t have a tractor, so he has the use of one neighbour’s tractor and another’s slasher.  We are lucky to have such wonderful neighbours.  He will be at it for quite a few hours to get it all done, but we will both be much happier when the job is completed.

With the better season  we are also seeing a much greater number of kangaroos.  Whereas, for most of the time we have been here we occasionally saw them in the paddock, and if so, a family of four.  Now it is unusual not to see them when in the car and the family has grown to six, and quite often we see several more and usually some joeys in amongst them.  Yesterday, they seemed quite happy to sit in next door’s paddock and have their photo taken.

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The one on the right doesn’t look all that big in the photo, but when he sits right up he would be well over six feet tall.  He is a big powerful looking fellow.

The only downside to all the roos around is that they often on the road and being hit.  Not a good outcome for the cars or roos.

I’ve no sewing to show, but I have made a bit of a start on the SSCS projects.  Once I decided what to make it was so much easier to get going on it.

Friday 7 October 2011

What’s in My Name?

Dawn has asked this question of us all and it is amazing all the different blog names and what their origins are.

Mine is rather simple.  As a littly I used to refer to myself as “Janna” – or so Mum tells me.  Apparently I used to tell her “No nawny Janna” when she scolded me.

Move forward about 25 years and a work colleague used to refer to many of the girls at work by both of the Christian names – me being Janice Mary.  Of all of them, mine seemed to be the one that stuck and I started referring to myself by the shortened version of “Jannimary”.  Long after I no longer worked there I still seem to call myself “Jannimary” if I’m talking to myself – hopefully not the first sign of madness.  More along the lines of “Come on Jannimary, get a wriggle on”.

When I started my blog I had no idea what to call it, as it was to be about all parts of my life.  I don’t do enough craft to include that in the title – it would be a bit presumptuous, so “Jannimary” it is.

Wednesday 5 October 2011

Off Exploring Again

Each year on the October long weekend, or thereabouts, we like to go to dinner with some friends of ours.  They live in Rockhampton, so it is a bit of a trip.   This year we decided that Goondiwindi was the ideal venue, a nice halfway point.

We had planned to ride up, but after watching the weather reports ended up taking the car.

Along the way we had time to poke around in places like this.

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We stopped in parks for a cuppa and picnic lunch.

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We called in at the little country town of Bingara.  This is one of those places that we always seem to go through when we are in a hurry to get somewhere, or when everything is shut.  For a change we had time to browse.  There is some lovely leadlight on the shop fronts.

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Around the corner from the main street, Mick spotted a ladder out the front of a shop, so we went to investigate.  It was rather well spotted.

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Upcycled was a fascinating shop, with lots of people in there browsing and spending their money.  I left a bit there too, just quietly. I just haven’t taken photos yet. Don’t you love their bunting.

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Next was the craft shop with this rather splendid fellow out the front.  He is made entirely from stuff found at the local tip.  His feathers are binding twine.

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Over the road is the magnificent old Roxy Theatre.

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Mick had a peer through the windows.

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Just then a lady came up and told us that if you go into the tourist office, a few doors down, they do guided tours.  As we weren’t in a rush, we partook.

The theatre is celebrating its 75th birthday this year.  It was started by three Greek fellows and they also had the adjoining cafe.

The architecture is stunning, although difficult to photograph.  They were setting up for show that night.

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The seats and drapes are not original, but the wall finishes and lights are. There are shutters behind the ornate screens, which would have been used for ventilation before air conditioning.

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A lot of money has been spent on the theatre, but it was well worth it.  Even the loos were in keeping with the style.

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Next door, Peter’s Cafe has been restored as well.  They use it occasionally for catering, but are looking for someone to run it full time. The timberwork behind the counter actually came from another cafe across the road.

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The tables and chairs came from a cafe in Inverell.  However, the original booths were found in a shed and have been reinstated.

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After we dragged ourselves away from Bingara we went into some fairly stormy weather, so were pleased we ended up travelling by car.  The scenery was wonderful.  I just love the wide open spaces.

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It was still wet when we arrived in Sunny Queensland.  The temperature, at 1.30pm was a whole 12 degrees C!  Not what we expected, and especially not what our friends from Rocky expected.  Fortunately, they had packed a jumper.

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We even had some hail, which apparently is quite rare.  It didn’t clear up for some time.

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We had a lovely evening with our friends and then in the morning started to head south again, this time travelling down the Newell Highway.  Mt Kaputar looked spectacular out to the east.

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Our next destination was to visit some friends who also went to the Isle of Man on their bike.  Part of the reason we took the car was that we had about 30kms of dirt road to drive and it had rained the previous week.   Fortunately, it had dried out fairly well, and as long as you followed the tyre tracks it was fine. It would have been a bit interesting on the bike though. Excuse the bugs on the windscreen.

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The weather had cleared by  now and we spent the evening sitting in front of a lovely fire, eating food cooked in the camp oven and chatting with good friends. You can’t get much better than that.  The lovely Chookyblue and her family were even in attendance.  I will note that she was busy crafting as well as chatting while there was sufficient light, unlike the rest of us that just chatted.

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The next morning we went to a neighbour’s to see his collection of old bits and bobs.  The fellows in the Car Club would have been drooling.

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Finally, we started to head home again, stopping briefly in Gulargambone to check out the Galahs.

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Then in Gilgandra to check out the windmills.

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We were both rather tired by the time we got home.  We had covered quite a bit of ground and seen so very much.  It is amazing what we crammed into such a short time.  Now we have to decide where we will meet up next year.