"an elegant tapestry of quotations, musings, aphorisms, and autobiographical reflections" (James Atlas)



Monday, March 20, 2017

March-ing right along!

Had a fun day with some of the Friday ladies, celebrating Paula's birthday in Ballan and Ballarat. We explored Millrose Cottage and I certainly let the moths out of my wallet! Woohoo!
We had a lovely lunch at the Millrose cafe. Had a delcious mushroom tart, with exceptional pastry. Very yummy indeed.
My haul from Millrose was a delightful red fabric, to go with my Scandinavian Rose sticheries, now almost completed (one to go!). I'll have to be careful with the cutting - as you know, Donna and cutting don't go well together. Then I found a cool fabric to go with my bear
 panel. I was looking for grey, but liked this small check in greens and browns. I also found a cat fabric, and I just had to buy some because it has a Birman on it! Good reason, right?! The charm squares are just beautiful, lots of colours and rich with golden accents. My mind is busily plotting...
Then, in Ballarat, I found this unbelievable owl fabric! Now, is this awesome or what? The bolt was nearly empty, so I got the rest, about 80cm. No idea what to make with it, but something will occur to me. It's a beautiful linen. I thought I was very restrained at Gail's.
It's been warm and humid today, and Sherman made himself comfortable on the bed in the back room. Nobody can relax as well as a cat! He's lucky he didn't get his feet tickled.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

March stuff

 Cool Labour Day weekend around here! Celebrated my friend Gudrun's 70th birthday on Friday. She even celebrated with two birthday cakes, lol!
Then my friend Kathryn visited, for some sewing, drawing, and cutting in the Owlery. I was inspired to draw Sir Basil, a cat about town. Very relaxing activity.
I cranked up the Accuquilt Go and cut out these tartan strips for my fox quilt. I wanted one more, a bright yellow tartan, and found one today at Millrose Cottage. And I must add my haul to the next post...
There was a nice sunset a couple of days ago, so I grabbed the camera and took a few shots. Not too bad, but I had major problems photographing that gorgeous big, red moon last night. Back to the drawing board!




Thursday, March 9, 2017

Thursday moose-ings

Felt inspired this week, and spent some time in the Owlery, makng cards, crocheting, and quilting.In between, I tend to read a lot. Just finished "The Little Paris Bookshop" by Nina George. It's about a whopper of a mid-life crisis, but beautifully written. I've started "Galileo's Daughter", but it's a little harder to get into. I shall persevere for a while.
Made some more cards, the 'fairy' one is for my little cousin, who turns eight later this month. I found a mag with all the stamps, and couldn't resist them. I used Gelatos for the background, they blended so well. I highlighted some things with my
Wink of Stella pen, but it's difficult to see on the photo. I really like this stamp set.
My friend Gabbi is a professional photographer, taking photos of newborns. She did me a favour recently, so I thought she might like these two crocheted baby crowns. They're tiny, for newborns' heads, and were easy to make.
The peacock card is for a quilter friend, it's her birthday next week. I hope she's not one of those people who think peacocks are bad luck...
And the pink one is for another quilter friend, whose birthday is on the same day...and she hates peacocks! It's just a bird. I used my new peacock
 die, with alcohol ink on yupo paper, which was left over after a fun day with Chris.
Finally, I started working on a new quilt top, which I'll probably turn into a large cushion. It's for a friend who has recently finished her degree, and the colours (black, red, apple green) are her graduation gown colours. The script fabric is a nod to her new librarian status. I thought I'd make a large cushion out of four blocks, so that she can "rest on her laurels".
In the meantime, I'm waiting for my KitKat quilt to come back, so I can do the binding. Kerry's picked a gorgeous quilt pattern, so stay tuned.



Thursday, March 2, 2017

Awesome Autumn!

 Yay! It's my favourite time of the year, and already I feel a little nip in the air in the mornings. At the moment, it's more of a late summer, with the grass drying out and large flocks of corellas in the yard. Well, here's hoping for a bit more rain.

A few things happening on the quilting front. My friend Kathryn gave me this wonderful fabric - and it's got owls on it! I have a project in mind for it, must dig out the pattern.
My friend Gabbie gave me these bright fabrics and last week I found the perfect use for them - a needlecase, to replace the one that was stolen. The old one was given to
 me by a friend, so I didn't have the pattern. I drew a pattern, and it's not as nice as my first one. It's a bit wonky, but will do what it's supposed to. Now I just need to fill it with needles again.
I also took the Kitkat quilt to be quilted, and look forward to finishing it off. Now all I need to do is decide what to quilt next. It's a toss up between a fox quilt, a Kaffe Fasset quilt, an American quilt, or a modern quilt for a friend. Hmm....
Also made some cards, one (sadly) a sympathy card for a friend, and a 70th birthday card for another friend.
Finally, I was thrilled to get the large Swallowtail stamp in the mail today. I've been hankering for this forever! Can't wait to get a few cards done with this. It's a retired stamp, and I
 was lucky to get it (at a fantastic price, too). I think the seller might have had second thoughts about selling it, so I count myself lucky.




Sunday, February 26, 2017

More February fun

 Last week was relatively busy. On Saturday, I headed down to Geelong to the Quilters' Guild, for sit n sew with the Gisborne (and St. Leonards) girls. That was enjoyable as always, with lots of interesting show and tell quilts, and an interesting speaker, who demonstrated her 'pixel' quilts, which were quite impressive. My friend Sue gave me a bag full of her lovely plums, which I cut up and pitted, to be frozen. I want to see if I can find an (easy) recipe for a yeast dough, to make a German-style plum cake. Yum!
On Tuesday we dropped Sherman off at Kepala, which was a new experience for him. He had a nice garden access suite (!) to lounge around in, and a couple of feline neighbours to talk to. We were certain he was in good hands.
 The photos are a bit out of order, but the next one is the Wildlife Photography of the Year Winner. We saw the exhibition in Geelong on the way home from our little excursion to the Mornington Peninsula. It's a great shot, but there were so many good ones to  choose from, the judges would have had a hard time making that decision. Well worth a visit.
We stayed in Rye for a few days, potterning around at the Tyabb Packing Shed one morning. Love that place, it has excellent antiques and other interesting bits and bobs. I even managed to find a new lens for my camera, a17-86mm one for my Canon. Very happy camper I was!
We took a few shots of the ubiquitous bathing boxes along Mornington's beaches. Always good fun. I had hoped for a reasonable sunset at the Rye back beach, but unfortunately the cloud cover was too thick. So the seagull was the most interesting thing we saw there.
Found some good eateries along the way. A fabulous Greek place in McCrae, Alatonero. Had some mezze dishes, and felt myself transported to Mykonos. And in Sorrento, we had dinner at Acquolina, a very authentic Italian restaurant, with excellent food and wine, and very welcoming staff. In Rye, we met with some friends at a Thai place (Ruby Modern Thai), where the food was scrumptious. In addition to that, we were located just across from the Gelateria in Rye, so I think it'll be Lite n Easy again next week!  



Sunday, February 12, 2017

Sunday morning happenings

Felt unaccountably energetic this morning - and no, it didn't last. But I got a few things done.
First, I checked out a few goodies I got from Lincraft yesterday. Must have been in the mood for Valentine's Day, since I treated myself to some hearts, a die and some brads. Rather liked the little cat and the stamps with sewing-related bits.
Then I got stuck into the Kitkat-Quilt, and started to sew the rows together. I try my best to get the points to match, but best not look too closely! Still, so far, so good.
And then I made a Valentine's card for my better half. Inside it says -
"...means All my Love! in Cat". Seeing that he likes his kitties.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Assorted

 A bit of a mixed bag today. Have been busy in the Owlery, mainly putting the kitty quilt together, but a lot of unsewing happening! It's those dratted angles that are hard to figure out. But I will battle on.
On Tuesday I'll be off to the Macedon Photographic Society again, they're having a little com around a "Wildlife" theme. So I got three of my photographs matted and wrapped, to show. Funnily, I think all of these were taken before I had my fancy DSLR. Goes to show, you can get a decent shot with any camera.
 Next is the stamp set I was hankering for - it's a beauty! Can't wait to use it. The tree comes up beautifully on cards, especially when it's embossed. Very excited!
Then a friend told me about her father, who will be celebrating his 94th birthday soon. I thought he might like a card all the way from Australia (to Nova Scotia), so I made him one featuring my photo of an old truck, plus some gears etc. on a background of rust. He's into trucks and cars, having been a car parts salesman for many years. I hope he enjoys it.
 The Friday ladies visited again, and one of them, Ann, makes these wonderful hardanger stitcheries. How beautiful, it looks almost like lace. A very talented lady. I shall be missing the Fridays in the Owlery, but next week it's back at Mary's for sit 'n sew.

Finally, a little more wildlife - a spider made its web on on our front porch. Very pretty, and I hope he stays outside!



Wednesday, February 1, 2017

February fun

 February arrived faster than usual, I feel. No idea where January got to! It started like proper summer, too, with temperatures in the mid 30s. Not my cup of tea, but hopefully not too many of those days ahead. Mind you, I like the garden at the moment, with beautiful aggies flowering, and my climbing Blue Moon rose smelling and looking divine. I love roses when they're just about to wilt. Lots of ducks in the yard, too, keeping our little lame duck company. And several young roos have been exercising their muscles, running around like mad things before heading back to the safety of mum's pouch.

I got a new die, a rather gorgeous peacock, and thought I'd try it out today. Used the alcohol ink & yupo paper Chris and I made when she was here. Not sure yet how I'll finish the card, will get some more inspiration on Pinterest, I'm sure.
One of our shops here in Gisborne has some Kaisercraft stuff, and I found a very nice pack of BoBunny papers (French Provincial). Will have to have a brainstorm and make something with these pretty papers.
I'm waiting for another stamp set, which I got at a spectacular price online. Been hanging out for this one for quite some time, so I'm quite excited. For those who like stamping etc., there is a Facebook group about retired Stampin' Up stamps and sets for Australian residents, which is where I found the set. You need to be quick though, the good ones go quickly. I'll post the set as soon as it arrives.


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Weekend fun

 It's been a fun couple of days. The Friday ladies visited the Owlery and we had a lovely afternoon stitching, knitting, quilting, and laughing. These ladies don't do things by half, they brought cake, freshly baked cookies, chocolates, tea and coffee, and we sure did justice to all of that. I was nearly finished with this panel of my Scandinavian Rose quilt, and completed it yesterday at Alleyne's place, where went for sit n sew. Only two more panels to go!
Alleyne kindly gave me this adorable owl door hanger for the Owlery. Those birds are taking over! Sweet little owls though.
 This week I also received my long-awaited Graphics 45 Ladies Diary paper pack, and I'm just blown away by how gorgeous it is! I got a shadowbox from Kaisercraft last week, and one of the projects I envisage using this paper for is the shadowbox. And lots of cards, of course.
The kangaroo is Ernie, a young-ish male who's been hanging around our place a lot recently. He has a small harem of three ladies and a couple of joeys, but they are not always with him. He seems to like it here. He's a lazy thing, doesn't move very much or very fast, usually lying down and grazing on one side, then turns over
and grazes on the other side. Not a bad life.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Bits & bobs

Have been in the Owlery a few times this week. First, I needed to make a get well card for a family member who broke her leg skating on a frozen lake in Germany! Very adventurous for an over-70yo.
I quite enjoyed making this one, very different for me. Must push those limits.
Then I finally started on a new project, with the cute cat fabrics Tracee, Sue, and Marg gave me for my birthday last year. I cut the triangles on the Accuquilt Go, which took all of half an hour. I got a whole section done yesterday, and a kind friend cut some strips out for me (my shoulder is playing up
 again). But I noticed that I gave her the wrong measurements, so I'll have to re-cut - ugh! AND will lose quite a bit of fabric. Donna and cutting do not go well together.
I so enjoyed the cooler weather yesterday, but this afternoon it's quite warm again, and I'm very lethargic.
The warmer weather brings the parrots to the back yard, cockatoos, corellas, galahs all congregate in our yard. Our apple trees were a big drawcard this week, attracting the cockies. They had a feast with the semi-ripe apples. I wondered whether the birds get a tummy ache from the unripe fruit too. Hmm.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Hello 2017!

 Happy New Year! January is already half way gone, and I've only had to write '2017' once this year! Got it right, too. Hope it's a better one than 2016, I plan to focus on good things, such as friends, family, Sherman, travel, craft, good books, creativity, and health. My aim is to lose 5kg by mid-year. Should be doable.
Sherman is sitting here helping me with 'Quilting Cats' membership applications. It's a hard task, and I'm afraid he's fallen asleep on the job. Although the purr motor is still going.

 The new year has begun quietly, and I'm happy about that. I'm just in the process of taking the tree down and putting the Xmas decos away. How boring does the house look!
The sales are on everywhere, and although I usually don't care much about that, I was tempted by some bargains I found for card making. This mag had a whole lot of common sentiments for cards, which is really useful, and comes just in time for me to make a get well card for someone.
Then I got the Merry Mice stamps, which will be a delight to work with for my next batch of Christmas cards.
The Tim Holtz stencil will be handy in combination with a large pinetree stamp I have.
Spotlight in DFO had a heap of Kaisercraft items on sale, so I invested in some paper. Can't wait to get my paper pad "Ladies' Diary" from Graphics45. I will be busy!
I spent last weekend watching a movie marathon on SBS On Demand, called "Crimes of Passion". A very slick Swedish production, set in the 1950s. Amazing fashions, cars, and very authentic sets. Even remembered some of the props from the early 60s. Does that make me old?!

I must say, SBS online has a wonderful array of series and movies to watch, all for free. They've got a slew of films with Mats Mikkelsen, one of my favourite actors. Another marathon....
The Owlery is seeing good use this week. Hope to welcome a few quilters this evening, tomorrow a friend is coming for sewing, and on Friday the ladies are coming for an afternoon of fun and sewing. Bring it on!