Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Can't I swap!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

             Sometimes I wish I could be a dog who lives here, instead of me!!


But instead there is ironing to be done!

And the vaccuum cleaner waits for me, not quite the carriage taking me off to the ball with my beautiful gown and glass slippers!

However I guess the work keeps me fit!
Last week I had a deep tissue massage from someone in Melbourne....I did ask him if this was the same as a torture chamber..... and daughter 1 in Melbourne had one yesterday. The therapist remaked that 'your mother is in good nick for her age'!! This is the first time I have heard someone say about me, good for her age! Well, I ask you!!!!
Well, Cinders, back to the vaccuum!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Crochet flowers for cushion

I have another sad tale to tell about my knitting! I have had to pull out the back of my cardigan as in my haste to begin, I looked at the number of stitches that were there AFTER I was meant to cast off for the armholes! I have started again but last night I needed some light relief and crocheted some flowers, some from Attic24 and three from Australian Better Homes and Gardens. They are going to look pretty I think on my 'vest' cushion!
I am making some pumpkin soup at the moment, a recipe from JenniferChiaverini's The Quilter's Kitchen. If it is as good as it looks iI will put it up tomorrow. It has maple syrup and orange juice as well as all the normal  ingredients and I felt like a change. There is some for a friend who has a nasty cold and I wish I coud send some over to The Greedy One as she is a bit 'under the weather' at the moment, some TLC from Mum would surely help, wouldn't it?!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Cold mornings all in a row!

Yesterday morning!

We have had two good frosts in a row, the second one this morning a really white one extending out into the paddocks, rare for us. I love the crisp freshness of the mornings, normally followed by the most glorious sunny days.
Our new black girls didn't seem to mind, their black coats contrasting with the white.

The canna lilly leaf yesterday and this morning, beautiful crystals of ice this morning.

A frozen Arum lilly, crispy crunchy!

A frozen succulent cutting, recently popped into the garden, strangely the mother plant wasn't touched at all.

 Oh dear, the poor little bird snap frozen whilst having his bath...... but no, it is the bird ornament fallen in!

And the 'frog pond' under the tap with the 'frogs' having a frozen bath! I didn't realise when I took the photo that our glorious morning was reflected in the 'frog
Sometimes we do not get what we expect and today has turned out to be just that. Within a couple of hours the day had changed into a raw, cold, grey day.
Good for our characters one might say although I think I am tired of having things to improve my character!
Enjoy your lovely sunny weather on the other side of the world and really, I do love our winter, such a relief after the heat of summer! I can still complain of the cold occaisonally and always have to remind myself of something I heard Billy Connelly say once, "There is no such thing as bad weather, merely bad clothes!'

Thursday, June 24, 2010

My Creative Corner

My creative space today is a corner of my verandah, and all the things I  have with me.........

my cushion cover, almost finished, two rounds around the outside.

My space today, in the weak sun!

My jars that sit beside me, knitting or crocheting.

The largest is to put all my ends in, all those cut off ends that seem to infiltrate everywhere, on clothes to be carried to other rooms, on the floor beside me, down the sides of the chair...... you know , you understand!
The medium size is to hold my embroidery cottons, for noses, eyes, mouths and maybe whiskers for when I make crochet animals.
The wee tiny the three bears plates of porridge.... has tiny buttons for eyes.

And my plastic container goes everywhere with me....pins, needles to sew with, an odd reel of cotton, perhaps little feet for an animal in the making, [so I don't lose any in the making] AND most importantly, my little nippers for nipping all the pieces of wool I need to nip!
Now the sun has gone in, the clouds have swarmed in, very black ones and I do need to walk with the dogs before it rains so I must go!!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Wood collection for cosy fires

When we built our house we decided on an open fire, imagining long winter nights with a lovely log fire to gaze upon and dream..... the reality was
a. It didn't last all night, the house was cold next morning
b. We used a lot of wood to keep our big room warm enough.......
and this meant lots of wood collections!
Now we have an in-built slow combustion heater which goes all night, our house stays warm and we don't use quite as much wood. And we are warm in the evenings without as much effort!
Today the 'hewer of wood' was getting himself organized when I suddenly had the idea of a picnic lunch and helping. Ham and cheese sandwiches, some cup cakes and a thermos for hot tea, the dogs and us humans set off!

We find the log, tie up the dogs so they can't go off chasing kangaroos.

They don't think much of that!

Chainsaws all ready!

Now in use, getting small enough pieces to then split with the magic splitter.

The magic splitter, no more chopping of wood!

Beautiful markings and colours

Some sustenance for the workers

We don't have a twincab ute but a 1 1/2 cab, meaning the small seat in the back is OK for the little ones and slim ones, not so good for me to climb in....or out for that matter.
Because where we were we decided the dogs had better come home in the ute instead of running along beside us and getting distracted by those jumping things we have here in Australia! So guess who sat in the back and who sat in the front!

I'm the one in the back sea!

Wool chaos and a special birthday

Why doesn't my evening, sit by the fire stash, always look like this?
Yesterday I needed to change

                                                     this mess
                                                     this mess

                                                 into some sort of order.
No photo of my table, too dark as I go back to it now. Just take my word for it! And make do with the stash in the old copper preserving pan!


On Sunday we went to Melbourne to a very special 80th birthday partym our friend June. She is the most amazing person, an artist, still painting and teaching at80, no plans for stopping. Shehas an enormous amount of really good friends, and she makes each one of us feel as though we are really the very best, a warm loving person. She has worked really hard for an organization called Very Special Kids, a place where terminally sick children can go with their families for respite or to have their final days in a place where they will be nurtured and loved. Her sense of humour is gorgeous and every-one feels so loved and cared for when in her presence. Her son did ask for names for her 90th, I am sure that there will be another party for her then, she hasn't time to pass over, even though her beloved husband will surely be waiting for her. My words do not do her justice, nor do my photos  of two of her paintings we have here but here they are anyway!

We need more treasures like June!!
Now it is off to help get wood for our fire. Normally I don't go out to help but today I just feel like being outside with my 'hewer of wood' and might take sandwiches and a thermos for our lunch....if it is not too cold.   


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Early morning

I am off to Melbourne for two nights and have quite a bit to do so thinking to myself there would be no blog this morning I glanced outside and saw the morning sky. How often we miss the things that bring us back to where we are, right now. My chores are not so important when I see the gifts that nature continually brings us, this morning it is the early morning sky.

As I took the photos from the top of a rock wall,[not to have wetr slippers!' I had a bird's eye view of my round garden bed.......

So often we need to see things from a different perspective.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Love is..

Love is in this case, a wheelbarrow full of wood, ready for the fire, even with an awful back. Along with my morning cups of tea, a cheerful face and new tyres for my car. How lucky am I!!!!

Only four more granny squares to go, I can't wait to finish and then get on to the next project!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

The week that was

We have had our first real winter weather this week, the sun shining only very briefly and brightly before returning to the bleak grey skies. Hibernation seems to be a very good option at this time of the year with a lovely warm fire, pots of soup for lunch and lots of projects to complete.
We have had the highest of highs with the birth of our new grand-daughter, Lulu , in Christchurch and now we are hanging out for photos. I keep picturing the family there and wishing I could be there for the cuddles...and the smells, the delicious scent of a new baby, the delicate touch of the skin next to yours, the tiny fingers curling around your own. All tiny miracles rolled into one little bundle.
Life is never static is it. Birth and death in some ways go hand in hand. We have this lovely addition to our family and my son, Lulu's father has had the news from one of his best and oldest friends that his father has died on the same day as Lulu was born.  My son and John were often not the most well behaved boys growing up and I think the two fathers despaired of them ever taking a mature place in the world. Well, these two 'boys' have grown into wonderful caring people but oh, the stories they tell about their exploits. We have laughed until tears ran down our faces, John's father had wonderful tales about these two as well and we will always remember his sense of humour as he recalled their mischievous behaviour. There wasn't anything BAD, just the thought of'what next' for the parents.
Life goes on, it just makes us think as we enjoy memories and make new ones!
I have had some sewing to do, mending work shirts for my husband [he is a farmer] so mending is always 'something' I have to do. I was determined to do something for me to end the afternoon so backed a tapestry cushion cover I had completed many years ago with a woollen jumper from the Op Shop. I couldn't believe myself for when I was nearly finished sewing the two sides together I found I had cut the woollen side near the seam. What to do, I wasn't going to unpick the whole thing so I crocheted some of Lucy's tiny flowers, stitched one over the cut and then sewed several more on the same side. I will take a photo tomorrow when I hope the light will be better... I'm so pleased to have finished this project! I do have another waiting in the wings but it will have to wait!
Two of the baby beanies have begun their journey to their new owners and am now to put faces on the mice for them to go in the post.
I have said it before.... I do love to see all the summer photos from the other side of the world which help us remember that life is all about balance. The summer flowers are bright and joyful but there are still the lovely winter flowers to be enjoyed as well.

Maybe the borage is a little early to be flowering but who cares, not me!!
And these star shaped daisies are always happy to show their cheerful faces.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

My creative space

There seems to have been a rush of babies in our family circle which explains my beanie knitting frenzy. Our most exciting piece of news is that our son and his partner had a little girl this morning. It will be August before I see her so will have to make do with lots of photos. Her parcel went off to Christchurch at Easter time, right colours and all as I knew the sex and the parents to-be did not, thanks to a kind radiographer who put the notes into the grandparents' envelopes. The parents didn't open the parcel until after Lulu arrived, great self control! An email was sent to me a few hours after the birth, wrapped in the shawl I had knitted and with my beanie as well. Tears in the eyes stuff for sure!!

I have beanies for two little girls still to be sent and one for a little boy as well as another still in the beginning stages for another friend who knows she is to have a girl. The blue beanie is from 'Unravelled:Time Thief Watch Cap and the pink  stripey ones are the same pattern but my own version. Also Attic 24's tiny flowers... they are so cute, I love them!
 The little mice are surely 'the three blind mice', all faceless at the moment as my embroidery threads are still in Melbourne but they too will soon be winging their way to a new baby home!
So now it is over to Kirsty at Kootoyoo.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Wet morning

Woke up to the sound of rain on our tin roof, which is a lovely thing to do but why does the garden look so abandoned!

I have had a great week in the garden, weeding, shifting things and most of all planning but the end result on a wet morning looks positively miserable apart from the lovely late roses and the jonquils popping up. I love the late roses, a tinge of brown on the petals and a bit 'blown'...and the buds, well, fabulous!!
There has been a little friend in our garden for several years, a blackbird with one feather sticking straight out from his wing, very identifiable! He has hopped around the back garden, scratching to his heart's content making an awful mess on the path. We put up with the scratching, always listening for his glorious song, a real little character. Then two weeks ago when my husband cleared the path, it stayed like that for days. We were very sad and thought he was no more, perhaps one of the dogs had chased him to a bad end. BUT NO! My husband has spied him, and our path, and life, is back to 'normal'.

Yesterday I went to Melbourne to see a watercolour exhibition in the converted gas works in Albert Park,  a suburb of Melbourne. The artist has only been painting for  a little over two years, a bicycle enthusiast who is retired. He even has a pennyfarthing he regularly rides in a little town close to us. His wife is a member of our book club but I hadn't met him before. When two other friends suggested we go I was delighted and we had such a great day.

In many of the paintings there were bikes and so many of the scenes were local ones with the bikes added. The old VW in the snow was exactly the same one as I had years ago, I wonder whether this one could possibly be mine! I really loved 'A Quiet Morning', a yacht drifting in some calm water but they were all good and I loved the quirkiness of so many of them. He had them reasonably priced and had sold nearly all of them, maybe fifty or so, a great effort!

I think this is to be the order of the rest of the day AFTERI have earned my keep and have completed some chores!