Thursday, 27 December 2012

Christmas Day

Today is a quiet day, just me at home alone.  Quite a contrast to Christmas Day, when we had twelve for lunch, and yesterday, when we went up to Lake Canobolas at Orange for another family get together with those who couldn’t make it on Christmas day.

The best Christmas gift was cool weather and some lovely, soaking rain.

Santa was kind to everyone.  My Mum heard a little birdy say that I may just like to receive this book.  I’m looking forward to making something from it in the New Year.

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The grand finale of present opening was my gift from Berit in Norway.

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Firstly, there was the little man, who is now sitting by my teeny Christmas tree.  Is he a troll?  I’m not sure, but he is very cute.

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The main gift was a lovely redwork table runner. 

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This could not have been planned better, as when I was setting up for Christmas I decided  that I would have to make a Christmassy redwork runner for Grandma’s dresser that lives in my dining room. Doesn’t it look festive, but still ideal for any time of the year. The workmanship is beautiful and the length – well I’m sure Berit must have been here taking measurements, it is perfect.

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There was also a tasty little treat to eat as well.  So, all in all, I was extremely spoilt.

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Another gift from the Northern Hemisphere was this cute Advent Calendar card from Loulee.  Not having kids, this was the first Advent Calendar we’ve ever had and we had fun opening all the little windows during the month of December.

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There is one other sweet gift that I haven’t shared as yet.  This came from one of my friends from my little stitching group here in town.

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The owl’s wings open up to reveal a needle case and pincushion.  The little purse is just the right size for loyalty cards.

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And……when you turn the owl over, there is a handy pocket for scissors and quick unpick (not that I would ever need one of those…Ha ha ha).

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It was a very clever little gift.

So now I am looking forward to a few peaceful days at home before heading back to work after New Year’s.  Mick, on the other hand, is back into it today, with long hot days each day for the next week, poor fellow.

Monday, 24 December 2012

Christmas Eve

I can’t believe that it is Christmas Eve.  After an incredibly busy month on all fronts I think everything has come together for a wonderful Christmas tomorrow.


Firstly, I had a whirlwind two day trip to Brisbane and the Gold Coast for work.  I was fortunate enough to sneak half an hour in the late afternoon to have a walk along the beach.

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The night time view from the hotel was stunning.

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Just a pity it was for work and not a holiday.

ShabbyBlogsDividerKEach year I like to make a decoration for each of my nieces for their Christmas tree. I learnt how to make these quilted balls recently, so had some fun making them. 

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They are easier than they look. That’s my sort of craft, maximum effect for minimum effort.

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We have given ourselves an early Christmas present.  We have been having internet problems at high demand times.  We are on wireless and in a bit of a hollow, so from about 7.30 of an evening till about 9.30 we have been getting no internet access, which is rather frustrating.   Mick has now installed an aerial on the roof and it seems to have improved things.  Two happy campers here.


Finally, here is our tree and table all ready for tomorrow.  We will be having twelve family and friends for lunch. 

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After an incredibly hot day, it is now cooler and raining, which is a great Christmas present in itself.

So, from Mick and I, have a wonderful Christmas with those you love.

Friday, 30 November 2012

A Cuppa and a Catch Up

I don’t seem to have been around here a great deal this month, so there are still a couple of things I still have to share.  Back at the beginning of the month we took part in the Geoff Martin Rally, which is a classic bike rally run by the local Panorama Motorcycle Club.

For a change we didn’t take a sidecar.  We gave “Sophia”, the Italian lady in a  beautiful red dress, an outing.  That’s Sophia on the left.  We rode a lot of the time in the company of the other Moto Guzzi on the right.  It was fun having the two together.

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It would be a good two years since I have been on the back of her and the strangest thing happened…….. my leather duds shrank in the wardrobe from lack of use.  Fortunately, my denin Draggin’ Jeans hadn’t shrunk quite as much, so were wearable.

I loved this ratty bike that took part.  Quite a contrast to the one next to it.

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This BMW is only new on the road, and lives just near us.

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I was a little nervous about being on a solo again, so initially hung on to the grab rail.  However, after a couple of miles I was just back into the flow and thoroughly enjoying the ride.  It was also different going back to having no intercom between us and not being able to take lots of photos as we went along.

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The ride was on gorgeous roads, taking in Hill End, Hargraves, Mudgee and then to the village of Ilford for lunch and voting of the bikes.  Mick and I made a little detour from the route for coffee and cake (naughty us), so had part of the ride with the roads to ourselves.  It was just glorious on quiet sweeping curves.

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Sophia won runner up in her class, which was nice. 


Meanwhile, this little man is proving to be the worry of my life.

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The weekend before the rally, we noticed Joey down in the front yard chomping on something.  Initially, I thought it was a bird – naughty cat – but there were no feathers, so I went to investigate.  To my horror, he was chomping on a tiger snake!!! 

We kept an eye on him, just in case the snake had chomped on him first, but he seemed OK.  However, the following weekend, he was just laying around, as he does, being a cat, and we were out and about on the rally on the Saturday.  On the Sunday he seemed quite lethargic and I was starting to think that he had indeed been bitten, but it was slow acting.  Cat’s can slow down their metabolism once bitten.  He has already had $1,000 spent on him after a snake bite a couple of years ago, and heartless as it may sound, I was reluctant to go down that path again, if he is just going to go out and catch them again.  I was resigned to a sad visit to the vet on the Monday.

Come Monday morning, I was expecting the worse, but when I got up he wasn’t in his basket….. Next thing he comes trotting along the back verandah, good as gold, rubbing around my legs and wanting his breakfast.  Thank goodness!  I don’t know if he had been bitten and had turned the corner, or whether he was just off colour.

THEN……… the next week he was nowhere to be seen for two days, before turning up as if nothing was out of the ordinary.  I just tend to worry during the snakey time of year.

By the way, I saw a brown snake up our driveway on the way home tonight, but it was a way up the paddock from the house.


Other than that, not a great deal has taken place.  Our vege garden has been beaten into submission and finally had some veges planted a couple of weeks ago. Quite late for some things, however, we had a frost the next morning, so was glad that things weren’t further advanced.


We had a storm here on Tuesday night providing a much needed 12mm.  Then, on Wednesday evening, while I was driving home from work I encountered the heaviest rain I have ever driven in.  As I was driving home I could see the storm near our place, and the sky was green, which does not bode well.  Once I drove into the storm, on the narrow road to our place,  I couldn’t see where I was going, it was just a wall of white water, but, being a narrow road, there was no where to pull over and if I stopped, something may have driven up the back of me – they certainly wouldn’t have seen me…….then the hail started……..I’ve never been so terrified.  It was about the size of walnuts.  Fortunately, the car is not damaged.

Meanwhile, at home, Mick had the camera out while waiting and worrying.   All the gutters and downpipes were overflowing.  This is nothing compared to what I drove in.

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We had 43mm in half an hour and all the tanks are now full, which is great going into summer.  Fortunately, because the vege garden is running late, it didn’t get smashed, and it has had a thorough watering.  See, there was a reason for it, not that we are slack.

The last couple of days have been stinking hot – in the mid 30s - and I think tomorrow is forecast to be the same.  That is quite warm for here at this time of the year.  Farewell Spring.

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Ta Da! – At Last

Finally, I have a completed Some Kind of Wonderful quilt to share.

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I finished it at a quarter to twelve the night before our blog meet last Saturday. There was no way I was going to front up without it being finished.

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I’ve really enjoyed making this quilt.  There was one stage in the middle of the year where I wondered if I would actually get it done, but then I had some time and got a wriggle on.

My friend Val did the quilting.  Lots of free hand feathers.

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She outlined the appliqué beautifully.

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I love the pesky petals now that they are all done.  Worth the effort.

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Look at all those feathers.

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I’m not sure which is my favourite block, but I am rather partial to the suitcase, which was the only block I tailored to suit me.  I just have to make sure that I do visit New Zealand in the not too distant future.

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Thanks Chooky for the inspiration and the occasional whipping.  I would never have attempted, let alone completed this quilt otherwise.

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So the details are:

“My Favourite Things” designed by Anni Downs.

Completed as part of the Stitch-A-Long arranged by Chookyblue.

Started on Boxing Day 2011. 

Completed 23 November 2012.

Appliquéd using machine blanket stitch.

Coloured fabrics from Anni’s shop as a kit, neutral fabrics from my stash.

Bamboo wadding.

Machine quilted by Val O’Shannessy.

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Oh, and it is a bit more significant than a bib for OPAM.

Only Nine Days

That’s how long it took for my SSCS gift to arrive all the way from the other side of the world.

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I’m amazed that a parcel travelled from Norway to here in just over a week.

My partner is Berit. Aren’t the gifts beautifully wrapped.  I do love the heart ribbon.

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Of course I have opened the small parcel to reveal a rather lovely ornament.  I think it will live on my pantry door until we put up the Christmas tree.

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Thank you Berit for such lovely gifties.  I can’t wait until Christmas to open the other parcel.

I wonder how long it will take the parcel I sent to arrive?

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Boys and Their Toys

You know what they say about boys and their toys.  Well, Mick bought himself an early Christmas present this week.

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Today he christened it out at Burraga Dam, which is a lovely peaceful place.  We last visited here last year.

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We took a picnic lunch and found a shady tree by the water.

Mick found it very relaxing paddling around.  He took his fishing rod, but it would have been a very unlucky fish to be caught in the middle of a hot day.

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I had planned to take out some stitching, but didn’t get myself organised.  Instead, I did this.

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It took me all afternoon to complete three Sudoku puzzles.  I may have just had a little nanna nap while doing them.  I took a pile of magazines to browse through, but didn’t open any of them. Rather a pleasant way to spend the afternoon.

The weather was rather hot here today, reaching 37 degrees C on our back verandah, however, at Burraga, which is an hour from home, it was only 29 degrees C.  We hope to have a weekend camping out there at some stage, so I will definitely have to have some stitching ready for then.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Bathurst Blog Meet

I had a fabulous day today.  There was a blog meet here in town, starting out at Anni’s Home Patch.  Ladies travelled from far and wide to be here.

Everyone had a lovely time searching for little treasures and lovely fabric.  Here are Lea, Chooky, Kate and Anita.

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Shopping up a storm.

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After our retail therapy we adjourned to the Chai Wallah cafe for a rather leisurely lunch and the obligatory Show and Tell.

Firstly, Chooky shared several quilts from her neck of the woods, including her version of Some Kind of Wonderful, in 30s prints.

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Next Kate shared a few quilts, including her version of Some Kind of Wonderful.

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Susan showed off her recently completed Tis the Season and her stunning hand pieced and quilted stars.

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Lea displayed her vintage feed sack quilt purchased on her recent trip to the Quilt Festival in the USA.  She was lucky it was still around when she left this afternoon.  I was eyeing this one off.  It was just gorgeous.

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I also revealed my Some Kind of Wonderful, which I finished at 11.45 last night.  I don’t have a photo, but will reveal all very soon.

I’ve never been to Chai Wallah before, and the meals were rather tasty looking.  I certainly enjoyed mine.

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Here we all are.   Chooky, Anita, Khris, me, Kate, Fiona, Deb, Susan, Peg, Suze, Dale, Lea and Sandy


We were also joined for lunch by Chooky’s sister Little Chicken and Baby Chicken, who I had lots of cuddles with.  Little Chicken has that same cheeky streak as her sister.  It was lovely to have them along.

It was a really enjoyable, relaxing day.  Thanks for organising us Chooky and Khris.