Sunday, 15 January 2023

Last Week

Time for another weekly report.

The highlight of our week was a Fun Day Out.  We have friends who stay at the Narrabeen Caravan Park, on the northern beaches of Sydney, for a few weeks each January. They invited us down for the day to see where they hang out and also check out the park in case we wish to stay there in the future. Neither of us have ever been to that part of Sydney before.  

Our original plan was to travel down on the train, but an 18km length of the railway line over the Blue Mountains is currently being replaced due to a freight train derailment in mid December.  The line won’t be open again until 21 January.  Therefore, we decided to drive down.  That way would also see what the route was like if we take the van down there.
Wednesday was a good day, as it was going to be very hot here, but only 23 degrees C in Sydney.  We could see the cloud cover over the Blue Mountains not long after we left home.  It proved to be cloudy all day, but no sign of any rain.
The caravan park is located alongside Narrabeen Lake and just over the road from the beach and rock pool swimming baths.
We went for a little walk around the headland to check out the view.  Not bad at all.
The track continued through the bush to further beaches, but we only went along for a little bit.  It was nice being in the bush, but still close to the city.

Our friends then took us for a drive around the area.  The lake is lovely and surprisingly large and would be perfect for taking the kayak out.  We then enjoyed a delicious pub lunch nearby.

The caravan park is large and despite its location, still has a really relaxed holiday feel to it.  Who knows, we may go down with the van one day, but definitely outside school holidays.  It was a very enjoyable day out.  

When we thought about it, we have not been to Sydney since January 2019.
At home things have been rather quiet, which has been nice.  I did manage to read a book.  It was a murder mystery set in the West Australian goldfields.  Not too bad.

I did try a new recipe for a date slice.  It was OK, but not the best, hence no photo.  I had been given the recipe, after liking the slice, so I will have another go at making it and see if it was just me.
We had a couple of rather noisy thunder storms during the week.  On Tuesday there was a lot of lightning, but not a lot of rain.  We were sitting on the front verandah and saw one strike on the side of Mount Panorama.  I made the throwaway line that this would easily start a grass fire.  A couple of minutes later we noticed a plume of smoke from the site.  The lightning struck a power pole which started a grass fire.  We had no rain here, but fortunately there was rain over there which extinguished the fire.  Phew!
On Thursday we had another storm.  This time it started with lots of hail about the size of marbles. Fortunately, no damage to cars and the like.
Then the rain came.  What a downpour.  Only 9mm in the guage, but the hail wouldn’t have gone in, so it would have been more.

On the stitching front I have not got a lot to show.  Yes, I have been keeping up with my 15 minutes every day, not missing a day since the start of the month.  Some days it was only just 15 minutes, either doing a little knitting or pressing and trimming HST for my leader and ender.  
I did manage to get one of the little cot quilts stitched together.  Jo will be pleased to know that I used the webbing method and didn’t get too confuddled.  Now to get it quilted.

On that front, I have had a little play around with pantographs.  I came across a YouTube tutorial by Whirls and Swirls.  It was so helpful.
In her tutorial she has a large plastic cover over her panto, so that she can add markings for borders and advancing the quilt to line everything up.  Coincidentally, I had a big roll of plastic that has been hanging around for years.  Cut in half it was the perfect size to use on my frame.  Bonus!  Plastic over the panto and the roll of plastic gone.
Here is my first attempt.  A bit rough around the edges, but on a patterned quilt would do at a pinch.
And my second.  Once again, a bit rough, but I think I can use it.

I have made a couple of more Rainbow Scrap Challenge blocks.  These finish at six inches, so I will need quite a few.  I may make some more later, or it may carry over to next year.  Who knows.  At least they are a start.  They are nice and easy.

I am making slow progress on my sock.  I’m currently working on the gusset.  The hold up was me sitting down to watch the tutorial again for the heel section.  I still expect to be well and truly finished by the end of the month.

Mick just asked how I can type so much when we did nothing, but when you look at it, there was a bit of this that and the other.

I’m going to link up with So Scrappy for RSC and Life in Pieces for 15 Minutes a Day.

I’ll finish with this little girl I saw on one of my morning walks.
Initially, she sat looking at me as I looked at her.  Normally, they hop away immediately.
Then off she went.


Raewyn said...

Plenty of This And That Janice! It looks like you had an interesting day out to Sydney. Amazing how much 15 minutes a day can add up! Love your RSC blocks and also the pantographs look great - well done.

ButterZ said...

So good to see you doing some quilting. If it was on a busy scrap quilt you wouldn’t even notice. It looks good. Being on plain fabric everything shows. The best way to get used to webbing is on smaller projects. This was perfect. Put it into practice on a 9 patch too. Looks like a lovely spot for a break.

Jenny said...

Looks like you have got the hang of using your quilting machine. I think I would find it rather daunting.

Kate said...

Yeah for keeping up with the 15 minutes every day this year. Even a bit of progress eventually leads to a finished project. The Caravan Park looks like a nice place to hang out. Your trial quilting looks great, that's a skill on my to do list for 2023. Happy stitching this week.

Marti said...

You are a busy woman! I looked at your first picture and thought your part of Australia looks similar to Central Texas, except for the wide open space and lack of traffic. The beach looks wonderful. What is the object with carving in your second picture? Both of your long arm practice patterns look great to me; it almost makes me want one too.

Pat said...

Looks like a fun week with a little of everything nice! your pantos look great! remember...only you know what the original looked like...everyone else will think they are stitched great!

loulee said...

Lots of this and that makes for a good read.
You're going great with your pantos, you'll get better with practice.

Anorina @SameliasMum said...

It's always lovely to visit your blog and see what's been happening. What a storm you had pass through! Looks like it was snowing.

Fiona said...

Lovely chatty post.... I am intrigued what you mean by the webbing method? the panto's look great, definitely would be fine on a patterned quilt.

jude's page said...

Your pantos look great Janice, it's all about PPP, practice, patience and perseverance. When I first started it was suggested that a wine before is a good start, helps you to relax and go with the flow!! Can't say I ever did try that, just the PPP.

cityquilter grace said...

i wouldn't say nothing....i love these pictorial sojourns that take me far from my own drab nothing...

Karen's Korner said...

You were right in my "back yard" last week. That was some storm. Great progress with Monique.

kiwikid said...

You have been busy Janice. Your quilting looks really good. That beach looks beautiful, great for a van holiday. Seems like you have had all kinds of weather.

Michelle Ridgway said...

My brother loves Narabeen and yes good idea out of school holidays. Thatcwas quite the downpour. Very nice RSC blocks...What a lovely early morning visitor x

dq said...

So cool that you and the lady kangaroo had a moment! I hope I get to see some in the wild while I am visiting.

I have always enjoyed your blog, now I am going back over things to get ideas of what I want to see when I come. I look forward to meeting you in person.

Your quilting is lovely and so are your blocks. Good job on your 15 minutes. I missed several days last week and am at 72%.