Saturday, January 29, 2011

Kayaking on a cake!

Well, it has been a busy couple of weeks now my holidays have finished and I am back at work. Doesn't take long for that holiday feeling to disappear, does it!!

A good friend of mine asked me to make a cake for her daughter's 21st.  She is a very sporty girl into all sorts of outdoor sports and adventure activities...certainly not into traditional cakes at all.  One of her favourite activities is kayaking so I thought she would love something along that theme.

I spent my nights this week fashioning a kayak, rocks, a sporty girl and making the cake.  It has been so hot over here though that within the space of a couple of hours my poor little kayaker had gone from being a very upright smiley gal to a slumped adventurer with no expression!! I ran it past the quality control officer and he reckoned it still looked ok so I hope she doesn't sink any more otherwise she will be under water!!






The party is tonight so I hope she likes it.


Friday, January 14, 2011

Postage stamp quilt along Part 1.

Kona Snow and Keiki Tweet Tweet
Well it seemed too good an opportunity not to do the Postage Stamp Quilt-Along since a bunch of jelly rolls have just arrived in my mailbox from the Fat Quarter Shop.  I have chosen Keiki Tweet Tweet by Moda as I like the colours in this range and I think they contrast well with the Snow. So the last couple of days have been spent sorting and sewing into strip sets.  My eldest daughter did come into the room while I was sewing and comment that I seemed to be taking over the house with fabric and my sewing! Sound familiar, anyone??

I have 2 days left of my 3 weeks holiday and am not sure how on earth I will be able to get up for work at 5.45am on Monday. I haven't been waking up until 9.30 - 10ish every day!  Anyway, the thought of work is all very depressing, so I am planning our next holiday already!! Tony and I are off to Vietnam in April for 3 weeks. Neither of us have ever been there, so we are looking forward to exploring a part of Asia that we have both read so much about. He loves war and history books so is very excited that he gets to drag me around all the war memorabilia and museums. Yawn! I am more interested in the beaches and food!


Was sorting through the paperwork in the office a couple of days ago and Dinah, the cat, came and plonked herself down beside me (as they do) right in the middle of all the paper. There's no show without Punch, so Max the dog came and made himself comfortable on the cat!

And lastly, my thoughts and prayers go out to our neighbours across in Queensland with their terrible floods. We watched the news tonight and the devastation is incredible. Thankfully, my friends over there are all safe, but I know many families are grieving for loved ones. A terrible tragedy.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Postage stamp quilt along.

Rachel from P.S. I Quilt is having a postage stamp quilt-along that I have decided to do.  All you need are 2 jelly rolls, one plain and one whatever, and some fabric for the backing and binding.  I love the look of postage stamp quilts and quilt alongs are always fun. I love seeing what other people come up with.  I love Rachel's blog too. She is another quilter and blogger with lots of great tutorials on her blog.


I took advantage of the Fat Quarter Shop's  sales before Christmas and picked up a heap of jelly rolls, so this will be perfect for them. However, I really wouldn't mind Central Park or Sunkissed in a postage stamp quilt, and of course I didn't buy them at the time! 


Perhaps I could do the Blogger's Block-a-Palooza  as well as this looks like it is going to be fun as well, and I could use either of these 2 ranges in this.   Oh, decisions, decisions...


Giveaways
Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict has been blogging for a year. She has a fabulous blog and is an inspirational quilter who has formed a quilt ministry and dedicates many of her quilts to those who are ill or in need of comfort.  To celebrate her anniversary she is giving away the most gorgeous pillow cover.


Ryan at I'm Just a Guy Who Quilts is another talented quilter with a fabulous blog. He is having a giveaway of 10 FQ of Denyse Schmidt's Greenfield Hill.



Sunday, January 09, 2011

Summer holidays, quilting and giveaways!

Well, I have just had 2 glorious weeks at the beach which is why I have been very quiet on posting comments to blogs and on updating mine.  Free wi-fi on my iphone was all I could manage and those times were few and far between considering I had to traipse to the mall every time I wanted to do it.  The only thing to spoil it was Sarah getting an ear infection on Tuesday, which of course is a public holiday so it cost a small fortune to take her to the dr and get antibiotics ($64).  They didn't work, so it was quite a palava to get another antibiotic without having to pay the casual rates of the medical centre over at the Mt.  We got there in the end and she is much better now, poor little poppet.  My own GP was away on holiday, and none of the other doctors at my medical centre would authorise a prescription without seeing Sarah, and I wasn't going to hike an hour and a half back home, nor was I going to pay another consultation fee at the beach.  So I pulled the nurse card, which I hate doing, and hey presto, things began to happen!!


So apart from that little hiccup I relaxed and read and sewed and swam and walked along the beach and did not a lot else.  Something to be said for the Kiwi summer at the beach.


I cut out the fabric for the 4 blocks I have so far for  Down in the Garden and sewed the blocks. Will start the stitcheries on them this week. Lighting is not the best in the photo, sorry. Was taken at night.






I also cut out my Bliss fabric for Wild Thing.


And I had a bunch of goodies waiting for me from The Fat Quarter Shop when I got home!! I took advantage of their Christmas sales. Got a bunch of fabric and 3 very cool books....Simplify by Camille Roskelley, another of Carrie Nelson's books and a Sew Scrappy mag. Love Camille's book. I can see it will become a fav along with Elizabeth Hartman's one that arrived a few weeks ago.

Giveaways
And, of course, I came back to a load of blogs to catch up on and there are so many giveaways out there in blogland at the moment!


Check out Kaelin who has reached 10,000 hits!! Woohoo!! She has some gorgeous fabric up for grabs and a book that I would love to own. 


Jo at Bear Paw does the most amazing mini quilts and is having a giveaway of one of these, a ball of yarn and 10 FQ of fabric. The mini quilt is incredible...


Linda at Stray Stitches has an amazing giveaway of 25 fat quarters and 5/8 yard of black fabric as well as a beautiful pattern "Flying Colors" that you could use this beautiful fabric for.  I really enjoy Linda's blog as well and there is always something interesting of fun to read on there.


Inch Worm Fabrics has the yummiest, richest looking red fabric in "half a jelly roll" with a lovely pattern to go with the fabric.  There will be just enough time to whip it up for Valentine's Day.


The Jolly Jabber is giving away a new range of delicious looking fabric by Amanda Murphy. I say delicious as it is called Swiss Chocolate and it looks good enough to eat!!



Ann at Renegade Quilter has a lovely French General jelly roll to give away "just because"!!



Sunday, January 02, 2011

Reflections...

Well, doesn't it feel strange to be in a new decade. I can remember when everyone was panicking with Y2K, and that just seemed like a couple of years ago.  Now 10 years have gone by and there have been so many changes in that time....

My father died nearly 6 years ago and I still miss him such a lot, but time is a great healer of easing the pain. I still think of him so often and there is so much I want to share with him....

I completed my family of 3 gorgeous kids who drive me demented at times, but I wouldn't swap them for anything....

I started a business Countrystitch which specialised in hand-dying cross stitch fabric. Back then there were only 4 stores that did this and they were based in the US and Canada.  Ironically, most of my sales were to the US though as our exchange rate at the time meant that my fabrics were cheaper than in the US. However, I created a monster and it was too successful which meant I worked long hours and wore myself out, leaving no time for my family and ME! So sadly after much contemplation, I sold the business and it is still going strong now with its third owner.

I left my husband, because of many reasons but his drinking and violence while drinking was extreme and then I found out he also took illicit drugs, and he was not willing to stop, so I made the very difficult decision for me and my family to end our marriage. He still has not forgiven me, despite having remarried and is supposedly very happy as she lets him drink, smoke and take drugs to his heart's content!

I remarried as well to a wonderful man, Tony, and am incredibly happy. We have been together 5 years and married for 3. We had a lovely wedding with all our kids in Rarotonga.  We complement one another so well and are so in tune with one another it is spooky at times.  And we are always laughing and laughter is such a good tonic.

Our wedding day October 2007

We gained a dog, Max who is the most adorable thing when he is not rolling in sheep or hen manure, dragging disgusting old bones around or pretending he is a Great Dane!

Look Mum, I made a hole in the garden!

We bought a lovely old house in the country. just outside of town.  Here, I potter around in my vegetable garden, talk to the sheep, entertain friends, lie under a tree and read, sew in a sunny room or generally relax. It is my sanctuary as it is away from noise and hustle and bustle (apart from when the 5 kids are here!).

I returned to nursing after a long time away and am loving being back. I was originally doing shift work in an ICU, but took on an educator role 18 months ago that is clinically based on a cardiothoracic and vascular ward. Lovely hours, no night shift (yay!) and a great team of nurses to work with.

And I returned to quilting after a very long break away. I started quilting when I was in my 20s, but then went travelling overseas for several years, then family commitments took over and I got into cross stitch instead. Anyway, I got bitten by the quilting bug again earlier this year and am loving it. I treated myself to a new Bernina 440 QE and have so many quilting plans now!!

New Year's Eve  31 Dec 2010
  



Saturday, January 01, 2011

Vignette Giveaway

I was very excited when Leanne Beasley released her magazine Vignette.  She had mentioned a block of the month quilt that would spread over 8 issues, with each month featuring 2 blocks. This is what caught my eye initially. I am enjoying Down in the Garden and I like Leanne's designing style, and of course, she uses those yummy Rosalie Quinlan fabrics. The more I see of this quilt, the more I want to make it!

Anyway, I missed out on getting a copy here, so was chuffed to see a giveaway for it on the Vignette blog. Go and check it out if you haven't discovered Vignette already.

Source: http://vignetteinstitches.blogspot.com/

Happy New Year!!


To all my readers and followers

Happy New Year!

May 2011 be filled with happiness and laughter for you all.
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