Sunday, June 21, 2015

MY NEW DIRECTION

Whilst in NZ Kate introduced me to the art of making models using the Gypsona Plaster of Paris over some sort of structure, wire, squished paper, foil and tape of some sort, the. Working in the same manner as happens with papier mâché. I've been getting myself into my work corner, in the cold laundry, whenever I can find a few moments. Really good fun until suddenly I'm coooold! Not having realised earlier as I was so absorbed in what I was doing.


This is for my artist friend and no, this isn't a model of her as she is in real life!


The paintbrush is made from a match and a snippet of our golden retriever's hair, he had very kindly offered to help in any way he could!


This is the beginning of a blue wren for one of my June birthday friends.


And a long legged something?! 


It is very exciting to find this new direction, to have ideas flowing in and through my mind after having felt stuck for so long.

Friday, June 12, 2015

HOME AGAIN

A long day yesterday, 12 hours door to door, and very happy to be home! However the pangs of leaving the family are pretty large! But, there will be a next time and I did have a very happy husband waiting for me at the airport...he didn't quite give me the welcome that Bear, our golden retriever gave me....he literally, the dog I mean, didn't stop spinning around, kicking his back legs up in a skip every time he completed a circle, throwing his soft toy up in the air, talking his talk, for at least ten or fifteen minutes all the time with his eyes glowing with love!! So funny! 
We didn't leave the house much as we were deeply involved in using the plaster of Paris bandages, following different paths with it. Too many great books, yummy meals and lots of chatting!




Kate's butterfly and her caravan...of course a caravan!


Not great photos but Kate will have better ones on her blog I'm sure. Don't you love Hugo's mouse house... Strangely his parents don't want the mouse house to live in their house, to have mice residing with them permanently just isn't on!
Archie with his sustainable art project, beautifully presented in the box he had made, maybe with a bit of help, I'm not sure. I'm so impressed with this work, so interesting to see what he was able to do.


No homecoming would be complete without a wander around the garden...


The first daphne, the delicate snow drops and a mushroom gleaming in the grass! 
So good to be home, good to be with family here just wishing we were all in the same country!

Monday, June 8, 2015

MY NZ HOLIDAY

Once again time is flying, bundled up with my family here, embedded as they say in all the everyday happenings that normally I only hear about. I don't need entertaining or to be taken to interesting places, just being here is more than enough.


I look out onto this from my bed each morning, very easy to sit in bed with my cups of tea and watch the sky light up through the last of the Autumn leaves, birds flitting and chatting a few feet from me.
I've been wanting, needing a new direction with creating, feeling very stuck and uninspired. And...suddenly I'm off in that new direction! So exciting! Kate had discovered the Gypsona plaster of Paris bandage crafting. Using it as you do with papier mâché. Building a structure, and then covering with sloppy pieces of the plaster bandage.
Kate has been making an amazing caravan, I'll leave that to her to blog about...it is beautiful...of course!


The rather spooky hand cast behind belongs to Archie, photo bombing! 



This poor old duck hasn't been quite finished, her pipe cleaner arms are to be covered. And she is rather knock kneed poor thing!
We've been using Gypsona bandage, bought from the chemist, I do wonder whether they are wondering about the boys, whether they have many broken bones that the parents are hiding from the medical world?!
Archie had a 'mental health' day on Friday spending a  quietly happy morning alongside his aunt, mother and grandmother who were all occupied with various projects and now today we'll have another special time with my extra family so lots of special times. Hugo had his time with the Gypsona yesterday, making a mouse house!
We did have a library trip just after I arrived to top up all the books Kate already had waiting for me. So many good books with a surprising one for me the best so far...Jodi Piccoult's Leaving Time. Quite different to her other books with a very surprising twist at the end. I think I could have spent my entire time here reading but one needs to talk, eat, (delicious meals!) create,  nap and of course, sleep so all these activities do rather distract me from reading!
And there are persimmons...I love them, eating, looking, appreciating the beautiful colour! 


Home on Thursday which of course will be lovely too, but oh, I do so hate saying goodbye! 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

SOME BITS AND PIECES, INCLUDING A TADAH MOMENT!


     
About three years ago I bought a camellia and planted it is a shady spot where I thought I might have a hope of it growing. Camellias seem to do well in our hot/cold area if they get a good start but I hadn't had any luck with them...until this one survived...but then we left it behind when we moved. And today I've just realised that the camellia I've been ocasionally picking is the same as the one I left behind. One of those happy little coincidences that has happened since we came here.


An at last finished jumper! For the 4 year old J. I was worried that it wouldn't fit him after 18 months of knitting, in very much fits and starts. Lastnight I finished sewing ll those ends from all those stripes and breathed a huge sigh of relief! I have been doing other projects in between knits and now can get going in earnest with my already begun ripple rug....


It is probably not a good idea to look too closely at the ripples, they aren't altogether in alignment but I'm hoping to be an 'expert' by the end!??!


I'm using wool I have in my stash, the brown is not a favourite of mine, nor is the blue but with the other favourites I think they work. And sadly the lime green isn't being produced any more so will have to find something similar. So....hopefully it won't take me two years to finish!
Hope you're all having a happy weekend.

Friday, April 17, 2015

THE DUCK PARTY MORNING

I've neglected my blog so much lately and I do miss it. However I always read my blogging friends first thing whilst having my morning cup of tea.  At last I seem to be pretty organised, most things have a home even if I would like a few more shelves...just waiting for E to have some me time...that is time for my wants rather than his time for himself!
The weather has been extremely dry in our corner of the woods and the creek which runs through the middle of the town had all but dried up, just a 'puddle pond' left where people tend to picnic instead of the flowing stream. The ducks had deserted the area, not enough water for them to have more than a splash. However! We have now had a little bit of rain, some further up towards the source of the creek and our 'puddle pond' has grown and with the growth the ducks have returned, so many of them it is a treat to see. I'm not sure whether it is 'legal' these days to feed the ducks but decided it would be fun to walk down with our 4 year old grandson who was with me this morning. And it was fun! We scuffled through the leaves, he picked up the conkers  from the plane trees, carefully bringning home one that had 'horns' on it and best of all he fed the ducks! Two pieces thrown into the melee of ducks, one piece for him! Obviously the grandson didn't want to go hungry!!



The one magpie who tried to attend the party! But wasn't allowed to participate but the ducks!




Al in all a happy morning, for little J, for the ducks....and for me!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

OUR NEW HOME!!





It has been such a long time since I wrote, so much happening here in our corner of the woods...packing yet again and moving house. Not far this time, only a kilometre away from where we were renting. But now it is our permanent home, no more shifts for us...I now need to get rid of all the packing boxes we have accumulated with each move, maybe keeping them might be a subconscious message we are to move again! No thankyou Universe, we are very happy here and intend to stay for our forever!
And no, the above picture is not where we are living! I'm not quite prepared to livie in a tiny cottage like this as someone so obviously did years ago, the old tank stand on the right hand side of the house showing that the rain would have been collected from the roof, every precious drop. I have seen the cottage on morning rides before but this morning it inspired me to write my first post I think for the year. Our house is a little bigger than this, probably at our age one might say too big but we have nestled down very comfortably. One of our requirements for our home was to have a big shed that didn't dominate the entire back garden, not so easy in a small town to find exactly what we wanted. We have our shed, not mine you would all know but the domain of the very industrious, clever and handy husband of mine. We all think he can do anything, going right back to Kate from Greedyforcolour  who at the age of 11(think) bought me a special tumbler for a present, dropped it and broke it. She came home and said to E that she had collected all the pieces as she knew he could mend it! Well, not quite!! Sad for Kate! The shed is a very big double garage with an extension at the back, just perfect for our needs....sorry...for HIS needs!
I'm still sorting out boxes of all my 'making' and 'doing' stuff I've collected, that has been in boxes since we left the farm. The tricky part is where I'll put it all as I haven't the same cupboard space as I luxuriated in before. So there is some culling, more op shop with all sorts of 'stuff'. I won't show you the state of two rooms, one is to be cleared with the conglomeration going to somehow fit into 'my room'! I feel so lucky to have a ’room' to call my own and can't wait until there is some more order and calm in there. I have an armchair in there and a desk from where I can look out onto the prettiest part of the garden, particularly in the afternoons when there corner is in shade.


Not a great photo as it was through the fly wire sliding door...I'm sure you can imagine! 
Moving isn't much fun but the nesting sure is! Happy day to you all!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

WHITE


I was just browsing through photos thinking I hadn't been in blog land for a little while so looking for some inspiration found a theme of WHITE. As our days are lengthening and becoming hotter I see so many beautiful snow photos, stunning snow photos and I sigh for the cooler weather. I do know that for many the snow becomes very tedious but from this little corner in Australia I'm rather envious!


This photo was such a fluke...the pair of cockatoos had been sitting quietly, but as I snapped away I caught this one taking off. They are such naughty chaps and are now haunting our garden again. They have stripped a crabapple of all of the beautiful dark red fruit as well as little offerings of the ends of the branches and leaves. Then today I caught them in the apricot tree, it doesn't really matter as the fruit was destroyed by fruitfly last year and no doubt it will be again. The apricots are green so they aren't nipping them off to eat them, just to have fun. And then later this morning the baby quinces were being attacked! Ugh!


Gardenias...such a favourite!


Quince flowers, so delicate and sweet.


And our visiting white rabbit. He is wild, very timid but seems happy to visit. For some strange reason our golden retriever absolutely ignores him, will happily be in the garden at the same time ignoring him. Just lately a small grey rabbit visits too and it has been funny to see the white one chasing him, pulling him into line. 


We visited a beautiful garden a couple of weeks ago where we admired these romeneya poppies. Luckily my sister-in-law knew their name so could look them up when we arrived home. The next morning I discovered them flowering here and I hadn't noticed them before. They weren't as good specimens but still beautiful as you can see.
So lots of white even if it isn't Christmassy snow! How are your plans for Christmas? I'm slowly getting there, the pudding and now the cake as of today are made. I have at least a million, slight exaggeration, cards to write as I'm putting in our change of address for when we move, a bit premature for our move but it will help later on and save 'double handling.' Only a fortnight now until our NZ family arrive, how exciting for us all!