Monday, March 31, 2014

Autumn is Here!

Hooray! Autumn is here, which is probably my favourite season. There's still a little warm weather around-low 30s tomorrow with a fire ban. Hopefully, a last hurrah before some cooler temperatures.

Family-wise, it's been busy-ish. Luke has started uni, and seems to be enjoying it. He also turned 18 which he celebrated quietly-a family dinner, and dinner with his friends. Dell has started year ten at OAC (Open Access College) which in on line study. Work has been ongoing as usual for Ron and me. We celebrated our 22nd wedding anniversary last week, which coincided with the arrival of our new car. It's a Holden Calais, replacing our other car for towing. Ron's softball team made it to the grand final last Saturday, but unfortunately didn't win this year. We have decided not to head to Barmera in the Riverland for Easter this year. It should be a good break as Ron has taken time off between Easter and Anzac Day.

I also got to meet up with a new on line friend Cassie who loves quilting, which was great as we have quite a lot in common. More meet-ups are planned!

On the crafting front-I finished something-I know it's been a while, but this was cross stitch, which can be on the slower side. It's 'The 12 Days of Christmas' by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery.

I haven't framed (or ironed in this picture!) it yet but Christmas is a long way off ;) This is the only item I've got for this month of OPAM but I'm glad to have it done. 

I've received my first quilt block for the Modern InstaBee-it's from Letitia, and I love it-it should be a colourful quilt when it's finished.

I can't show you the block I made yet, as the recipient wants a surprise. I was quite pleased with how it turned out, although because I didn't read the instructions properly, some of my seams are extremely bulky, and a few of the points don't line up as well as I would like, so I may end up making another one for my partner.

I've got a few things on the go, or in the pipeline, but I'll talk about those another time. The rest of this week will include some costume sewing as Dell has plans for a new costume for Comic-con. I'm sure it will be a challenge as garment sewing isn't my forte and it tends to be sewing without a set pattern-definitely a challenge!

To finish, here's another cute cat photo ;)


Monday, February 10, 2014

Summer is Hot

Just thought I'd state the obvious, but still.... We've had some very hot weather, with many days around the 40C mark or over (I think we got nearly to 45C one day?) which is 104C-113F for those who use Fahrenheit. Even though it should theoretically mean that there should be hours of time spent in front of the air con crafting away, this doesn't seem to be the case. I think that the less than usual deep sleep has something to do with it.

Consequently, there hasn't been a lot of crafting, or indeed anything major happening. It's all been about conserving energy, keeping cool, and when it does cool down, catch up on things. I did go to see 'Saving Mr Banks' which is (roughly) the back story of Walt Disney getting 'Mary Poppins' made into a movie with the permission of P.L. Travers. As a lover of both the books, the movie, and the musical, I enjoyed it a lot. There's a fair bit of 'poetic license taken with the story, but nonetheless, I enjoyed it a great deal.

I've signed up for two 'a-longs' this year. One is the OPAM, or One Project a Month, where the aim is to try and complete one craft project a month. The other is the Australian Modern Instabee, which is a bit like a stitching round robin. We will all have the same book which has quilt designs especially written for quilting bees, choose a design, and then each member of your bee will contribute one block for your quilt which you assemble yourself. I think it will be a lot of fun, as well as a great learning experience. I have some great girls in my bee, and can't wait to get my book and choose which design I want.


Sunday, January 26, 2014

New year, new post

I've been reassessing my blog recently, after neglecting it for another six months or so. We have been struggling and working to cope with our youngest's mental health, and many things we once took for granted have been affected. At this stage, I don't want to go into too much detail, as this is a public forum, and I don't think it is fair on our child to put it all 'out there'. It's a hard decision, as so much about mental health is not talked about, and I may talk more about it in the future. At the moment, we are waiting for our appointment with a specialist psychiatrist which will have taken five months when we get to see him. We are still going with Open Access College, possibly with a reduced subject load-we will play it by ear. 

In other family news, Luke has completed Year 12-he was doing the International Baccalaureate, and did exceptionally well- ATAR of 97.9 out of a maximum of 99.95. He's been accepted into the courses he applied for- Bachelor of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, and Bachelor of Computer and Mathematical Sciences at Adelaide University.

My plan for the blog will mainly focus on my craft, with a bit of family updates here and there. I'm starting with an initial plan of a weekly post at this stage. I've had some finishes and progress, but I'll have to go back over my photos for the last six months to find them all. 

Halloween Sampler by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery

Finished Jelly Roll Race quilt-first finished quilt, hand quilted

Finished charm square quilt-hand quilted.

Jelly Roll race quilt-fabric Boho
Jelly Roll Race quilt, basted ready for quilting
'Old Yella' ready to head off in the Bay to Birdwood Rally-car restored by Ron
 Finally, I'd like to introduce the newest member of the family, my birthday gift, secretly bought by my lovely husband.
 It's not the best picture, but it's the Janome 6600P-I'm loving it so far, and have started quilting the above quilt on it.

Hopefully, I'll have some more craft progress in a week's time-we have another hot week ahead of us, so there should be plenty of quiet time near the air-conditioner.

Friday, August 02, 2013

July wrap up

It's only been about a month since my last post, which is pretty good compared to some of my recent efforts :)

Things are going fairly smoothly on the family front-nothing major to report which is good. It's nice to have stability sometimes!

Crafting wise, I've made some progress with a couple of finishes. I finished the binding of the jelly roll quilt. I didn't actually take any photos of the finished item before I took it to it's new home with my in-laws, but I do have a couple of in-progress shots while I was working on the label.

I also finished our July project for the SAL, which was a bag from 'Tis the Season' book. I chose to use the 'Scrumptious' line of fabric by Bonnie & Camille, along with some stash pieces.

As far as WIPs go, I'm finishing off a simple charms square lap quilt, and working on my hexagon quilt at the moment. I'm planning on making up a goals list for August for craft and may even put that here on the blog.

I've also signed up for an online class to extend my quilting skills- it's The Penny Sampler quilt class and should be lots of fun.

Friday, June 28, 2013

A few months, a few finishes

Just a quick post to update what's been happening. Ron's work has been busy, maybe more than usual, with challenges that come with managing strong personalities in the IT world. My work has been busy with one new system to get the hang of in the library, and another for the council to start next week. Luke is in the midst of mid-year exams. Caitlin has continued with Open Access College which we will stick with for the moment. We've had a bit of a hurdle with our psychiatrist  having to retire suddenly (as in, two days after we last saw him) due to extreme ill health. It has taken some time for us to find someone else, and then to get an appointment, but next week we finally get to see someone.

Craft-wise I haven't done a huge amount, but I have had a few finishes with the SAL. Here's the last few month's finishes.

I'm currently working on getting the binding ready to apply to the jelly roll quilt, so I may have another finish soon? We'll see ;)

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Good Mail

I don't know about you, but for me, there's a few different types of mail-junk, bad/boring, and good. As I've shown previously, each month I get two fat quarters of fabric from a swap partner as part of the Fat Quarter Swap, which means I get at least one lot of good mail each month. This month my swap partner was Arlene and our theme this month was 'lucky dip'. These are the fat quarters I received-they will be great additions to my stash!

The other 'good mail' I received recently was a prize I won on Samelias Mum blog. I was thrilled to win as I love a good period drama/crime and this series was a favourite. I've also been enjoying 'Call the Midwife', 'The Dr Blake Mysteries' and of course 'Downton Abbey'.

In other news, Ron had his softball club presentation last night, and won 'best team man' for his team. We have two weeks of school holidays now-we don't have anything specific planned, but will be out and about although Ron and I will still be working.

I have finished all the stitchery parts of my wall hanging, so I'm now onto the construction phase. I also finished the hand quilting on this jellyroll quilt (finally).

I don't have anything planned for at least tomorrow (although that could change) so I'm hoping to get some crafting done in between the usual tasks.

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

March, Easter, and a Finish

So-it's April already! March is usually a busy month anyhow, with Luke's birthday (he'll officially be an adult this time next year-yikes) and our wedding anniversary (21 this year) but with an early Easter thrown in, it's just flashed by.

We travelled to Lake Bonney at Barmera as we've been doing for...22 years-with only 2 of those missed, but it was only a short visit as it doesn't fall in with school holidays this year. I don't have any pictures for this post as they are still on the camera.

Before we left, I finished my SAL 2013 March pincushion from Anni Down's 'Some Kind of Wonderful' book. It turned out quite well, and I was very pleased to make the deadline amongst packing.

I did get a little stitching and knitting done while we were away (especially during the car journey) but I admit I did spend a fair bit of my down time reading too.

The SAL project for April is a Christmas wall hanging and it uses the same stitcheries for the quilt from the same book ('Tis The Season by Natalie Bird) which I started some time ago and has been languishing in my WIP/UFO pile. I made an executive decision to use the stitcheries I've done-I just need to finish off one. Here's what I've got so far.

 Hopefully this means that not only do I get a good start on this month's project, I'll get rid of a UFO as well. I'm also hoping to get caught up with my cross stitch SAL this month, so when I've got some decent progress on that one I'll take a picture.