14 Jan 2015

Hearts across the miles

I love Pinterest.  It makes me feel so happy, to know I have so many pretty things I can look at any time.  They're nicely categorised and provide endless inspiration.  My virtual life is so pretty, colour coded and creative.

Every now and then, I actually make something from the pretties, and this pin seemed irresistible.
There's a few different versions around, but these were definitely the nicest that I saw. The creator of these adorable hoops has extended her designs from this point, and sells some lovely things in her etsy shop.  

I'm lucky enough to have two sisters.  One lives around 10 minutes away, and the other around 10,000 miles away.  I made this for my English sister's birthday, which was yesterday.

When she first went overseas, phone calls were so expensive. We wrote letters, and waited and waited for replies.  Now we text, skype and email.  We have phone companies that provide international calls as part of package deals for no extra outlay.  I'm so grateful for these things. Our hearts will always connect us, but it's so nice to be able to be connected in the rest of our lives too.

9 Jan 2015

Starting the new year with a bang!

Well, not really.  We ended the old year with dinner with the inlaws and a couple of games of cards. Which we lost.

Then we celebrated with a sleep in.  It's a special thing, since our children are finally old enough do the same.  Soon, I expect I'll be complaining that they won't get out of bed.

On the second day of January it was the anniversary of starting this blog, back in 2006. Being the on-the-ball blogger I am, I completely missed this.  Oops.  To celebrate, here's a pavlova.
It's the perfect dessert at this time of year.

As always, I like to think I'll be organised in the new year. This year, 2015 will be the year of starting AND finishing new things. Quilts mainly, but there's room for some knitting as well.  January's never a very productive time for me with summer holidays.

I've also started the year with a splendid bruise, courtesy of a visit to the emergency room. Hours of bloodtests, xrays, and ECGs  thanks to a gallstone. It was my first stone, and I really don't want to grow any more, thanks very much body. Ultrasound has shown there's no more lurking at present, so long may they stay away, as it was just an awful time. Our hospital was fabulous, but it's not somewhere you want to go.

So at present I'm treating myself kindly, and taking it relatively easy. The Christmas decorations are still up, but that's OK, I'll get to them soon.

31 Dec 2014

Looking back

New Year's Eve and I've been introducing the children to the concept of evaluating your year, and setting goals for the coming year. I don't really do it myself, but it seemed like something organised people do.

We've had a pretty good year, although it has seemed a little like treading water in places.

One big event, which will probably be unique to 2014 for us, was being drawn out by the ACT government to attend a small gathering to watch a tree planting. The tree in question, an English Oak, was planted by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and his wife Catherine.

We both were thrilled to shake hands with them both, and exchange a few words.

While waiting to meet the Duchess, my daughter noticed the ring on her royal and pointed it out to me. I'm so glad she did, because otherwise I wouldn't have noticed, and OMG it's Diana's ring of course. (I was 10 when Charles and Diana married, and paid close attention to every detail the Sydney Morning Herald could give me, so I knew ALL about that ring.)

We had such a nice time. I was thrilled by the warmth projected to us.

Tomorrow, I'll be setting out my goals for 2015. I think it's time to get ambitious!

17 Dec 2014

Swapping mug rugs

It's been a long time since I was part of a swap. Life's been getting in the way, and losing my sewing room has made much more effort required for sewing to occur. When Angie launched a mug rug swap though, I thought I could probably manage it.

(A mug rug is a very small quilt, just big enough for a mug of coffee and perhaps a small plate. I like using them for my water bottle.)

That was before I got my swap partner. I was thrilled when I saw who my recipient would be. Then I started getting scared, because this quilter's very talented, organised and a prize winner.

So I put off starting, although was drawing up plans, most involving fussy cutting from my large collection of Christmas prints. Last week was when I planned to actually start, but I hit a snag when I couldn't find my fabric. I still can't find it.

Obviously, I changed the plan. Instead, I wanted a create an idealised version of a camping Christmas. It's one of our favourite things to do for the festive season, but is rarely as picturesque as I imagine.

It's a very simple quilt, with the silhouetted campsite vleisofixed onto my sky background. I didn't actually stitch around the image, as I thought given the heavy quilting I landed, and the end use of the quilt I thought it would be ok.

I'm pleased with the mug rug, and hope the recipient likes it too.

I'm looking forward to receiving my mug rug from my other, as yet unknown swap partner.