30 Nov 2011

NaBloPoMo - the final post

NaBloPoMo  has come to an end. Daily blogging is quite a challenge, and the clear message I've learnt is that I don't craft that much.

However, I had two swaps due to be posted today, so have finished them off this morning.

Two more things learnt today;

  • Kittens are not assets when it comes to actual crafting.
  • It's best to beat a deadline, not just meet it.  We've had a lot of rain today, following on from last night's astonishing thunderstorms, which has meant terrible light for photographing my finished swap items.
Oh well.


29 Nov 2011

Finally some crafting content

Even if it is that same little quilt.  It's nearly posting date, and I've been sitting outside ballet, finishing it off.
A kitty-free location - maximizing productivity!



28 Nov 2011

Cuteness

All activity has stopped - we're too busy looking after wee Maggie.

27 Nov 2011

Purring

So happy to finally get my birthday present - this lovely little kitten. It's been too long since we've had a furry pet. The children are enormously excited, and suggesting names like "girly girly girl" or "cutie pie.".

26 Nov 2011

News from the Nest

The Common Blackbird (Turdus merula) is not a native bird here in Australia.  However, they do have lovely melodic song, and beautiful eggs.

Our nest has two eggs in it (and this stolen one, currently adorning the windowsill.)

I've never seen such a pretty egg.

25 Nov 2011

Bananas are back, baby

It's such a relief to have banana prices down again - after the cyclone and floods, they've been precious fruit. But now the prices have dropped, the bananas have the chance to become overripe on the bench, which results in luscious blueberry, raspberry and almond banana bread. Yum!



24 Nov 2011

Lists

I really, really need to start writing some lists.

Mum has gone home this afternoon, accompanied by our gratitude, many special drawings, and a little gift or two from Melbourne.

Crafty deadlines are fast approaching - a dolls quilt, and a Christmas ornament.  Children's events are fast approaching - the ballet concert is less than a fortnight away, involving normal lessons, extra lessons, a dress rehearsal, and a hair and makeup lesson for me.  School has a Christmas carols evening, and various special assemblies.

It really is time to find my inner organised person fast - or to fake it till I make it, or some such inspirational message.

Mum and Dad will be coming to the concert, which opens an opportunity for their car to be our sleigh and magically transport gifts.  A fabulous idea, but it does mean that Christmas shopping would have to be completed by the beginning of December.

Thus, time in December would be available for crafting, cooking, maybe even relaxing.... I think I like it.

23 Nov 2011

Nesting

During the weekend of luxury, we made a family trip to the Bredbo Christmas Barn. It's an enormous, magical, glitterabulous place in a very small town.  We had the perfect ratio of adults:children - one on one.  The children were captivated and enchanted, and each took the task of choosing a Christmas ornament each very seriously.

Personally, I was overwhelmed, and didn't buy anything. I possibly would have if we'd already decorated at home.   There were some adorable glittery birds nests picks that would look lovely on our tree, given the number of glittery, feathery birds that perch on it each year.  They started me thinking of how I could make nests of my own, as hanging ornaments.  Further thinking required.

This afternoon, I saw a bird fly out of a bush in the front yard. Of course, we investigated, and discovered a nest.  Immense excitement - especially since it's just outside our computer/sewing room. We're looking forward to peeking out the window.



Don't bother trying to see the nest in this picture - it was mainly a window shot!

22 Nov 2011

Luxury

Preparing to fly back home, it strikes me that these past few days have been all about luxury. Mum's looking after the kids (superbly, I'm sure), travelling business class(!!), and shopping till I drop. Lovely break, and mire details to come.

Big, big day


It's been a very big day - and being dwarfed by this lovely elephant really put things in perspective.  I love seeing animals from ground level - thanks Melbourne Zoo.

20 Nov 2011

Indulgence

Good for the soul. If not the waistline.  Lovely dessert at Koko Black with my Mum and sister.
(see full image)



19 Nov 2011

Packing


Packing for the trip - two sets of clothes, sandwiched doll quilt (ready for some evening quilting action), and a book or three.  All set!
(see full image)



18 Nov 2011

Hugging

Lots of hugging. Chooks and grandmothers.  We were expecting Mum to arrive but not quite so soon. Nor were we expecting said grandmother to be doing tricks at the skatepark. Illustrations tomorrow.
(see full image)



17 Nov 2011

Kneading

Dough for Christmas decorations.

16 Nov 2011

Planning again

Relaxing tonight is difficult - our skies are being patrolled by fighter planes (to protect the visiting President).  Low level grumbling is fairly continuous. By the aircraft, that is. And by the people - our town is a quiet one usually.

So instead, I'm planning.

Next week, I'll be going to Melbourne for two days.  Once again, my husband will be attending a conference, and I will be holidaying.  This time, Mum's coming to stay with the children.  What a treat!  And to add to the treatiness, Mum's excited about having been asked to do this.

So, what's good to do in Melbourne?  I usually go to the Zoo, but this time, with no children, and not the emotional connection I feel with Sydney's Zoo, it might not be on the agenda.

Reading, knitting, a trip to the beach, maybe a movie? 

15 Nov 2011

Celebrity plans

No creativity today, although I did take advantage of Spotlight's thirty percent off deal, planning ahead for another day.

A week or two ago, Queen Elizabeth II visited Canberra. While I didn't go along and wave, there were a number of opportunities for the public to do so.

Tomorrow, President Obama will be visiting Canberra. No public options here - if you're not a member of the media, parliament, or a generic VIP, this will be a tv only event. I suppose I could go and stake out the road from the airport, but won't.

However, I do plan to keep an eye out skywards, where apparently fighter planes will be patrolling.

Next week, it's our favourite Tasmanian, Princess Mary. Public opportunity available - if I win the ballot.

14 Nov 2011

Topping

Today, I was in a whirlwind of activity. Groceries, washing, vacuuming meant time for sewing.

I was very pleased to get my top finished for the swap - and after trying out about fifty different fabrics, simply changed the angling of my log cabins. It made such a difference.

13 Nov 2011

Log cabins for a swap

Log cabin blocks by pugglelogic
Log cabin blocks, a photo by pugglelogic on Flickr.

I finished sewing these blocks this morning, but now am stumped as to how I intended them to fit together.

More colours are needed, surely...

Off to rummage through the stash.

12 Nov 2011

Saturday morning


Saturday morning typically involves crochet in the car, while listening to a TED talk.  Lovely stuff. Inspiration, creation and peace, all wrapped up in a one hour space.

Soon enough, the ballet lesson is over. I'll look forward to the next one though.



11 Nov 2011

Home.....

My loving husband tells me today it's five years since we committed to buying this house. Fancy that! We haven't done much to it, except replaced the oven.

We still live with an indoor brick wall, look regularly at where the paint tends to peel on the kitchen ceiling, and consider how we really do need to put up curtains as well as the blinds that came with the house.

If its been home for this long, maybe we should start working on making it feel more homelike. Since we both have the clutter gene, this is more complicated.

Or maybe we should just move instead. Not really.

10 Nov 2011

Organizing for summer

Well, actually, more Christmas, as that's the most exciting part of summer.

Today was busy - no time for sewing, despite the machine still being setup on the dining table.

I took the kids over to my sister's this afternoon, where they enjoyed playing with their cousins, as always. Meanwhile, she and I discussed making Christmas foods, and made one important decision.

This year, we're having an official Christmas cocktail. And that is the sole productive thing to come out of today - a single decision. If you've any suggestions for a festive, summery cocktail, please share!

9 Nov 2011

Peaceful piecing

Lovely afternoon - I was sewing, Annabelle drawing, Lucas playing Harry Potter with Lego. All busy. All happy. Bliss.



8 Nov 2011

Online Life

I've just spent the last hour trying to gain access to a parenting website.  Having been a member for nearly 11 years, it's been part of my life for a long time.  Having said that, I was surprised at how personally affronted I felt.  Not that I am a big part of the community or anything - I average  1/2 a post per day.  It's just part of my day.

Having finally been readmitted, the first topic that caught my eye was questioning if all blogging is narcissist.  Well.  Possibly.  For me it's more about record keeping, monitoring my own satisfaction, and validation.

When I first realised that everyday people could blog, it was quite an astounding idea.  I was spending all day with my two very small children, and had just moved away from friends and family. Starting my blog gave me an area where I was me. Still a parent, but me.

As I'm reading more widely now, I've come to realise I've missed the boat with making money from my blog - it's not pretty enough, or regular enough, and I'm not selling anything.  I'm interested in those who are, but it's fine that I'm just blogging. This month I'm trying to post daily, but it's Ok if I don't.

And since I hate a post without a picture, here's a wordle of my blog;

7 Nov 2011

Swim like a fish

Or a mammal.

In the last few days, we've shown our holiday photos to various family members. We've enjoyed it, and I think they have too. It's been nice thinking of little adventures we had during the trip, like getting soaked by orcas at Seaworld. Such a thrill.

My own little mammals had their first day of school-based swimming lessons today. They were fine, although a little tentative. I'm really keen on these classes, as the daily lessons seem to result in more progress than weekly sessions.

DH had the day off, suffering with hayfever, which put paid to my crafting plans. However, the decks are cleared ready for tomorrow.

6 Nov 2011

Family Sunday

A busy day, preparing for a casual dinner for some family we haven't seen for a while. Happy cleaning (now that's a bizarre thought), and the first barbecue of the season. Lovely.

Tomorrow, I'm looking forward to cutting some fabric.

5 Nov 2011

Glitter

An afternoon spent colouring and glittering butterflies for her room has my girl perfectly happy. Since it was a reward for cleaning the room, I'm also happy.

4 Nov 2011

Whales and rockpools

Last weekend, mum and I took the kids out to a local headland looking for whales. We spotted some of the migrating humpbacks, but they weren't very close, so we descended to the rocks. Lots of treasures to be found. Such a treat, now we're living so far from the coast.

3 Nov 2011

Annoying quilting

Today I've been doing a little quilting. Only a little, since I'm having trouble with my thread shredding in the needle. I've tried all of the obvious fixes, and nothing works for longer than ten minutes or so. It's been very frustrating.

Attending the Canberra Quilters meetings always gives me some motivation to get in and sew - possibly I should attend more meetings!

2 Nov 2011

Chooky love

I love having chooks in our yard.

They give us lovely eggs - so fresh that the whites stand up, as well as the yolks do.


They also provide cuddles when you're feeling worried. Grade One are doing their end of year tests at present, and we are enduring nightly hysterical sobbing. She's worried because she can't get everything right, and then her grades will fall, and then the world will end. Well, I made up the last one, but that expresses the feelings of horror she's experiencing.

I'm horrified, because this is year one. We've a long, long way to go.

So once again, I'm off to the library, for information on boosting self esteem, relieving anxiety in children, and general how-to-fix-your-children's-worries type books.

After I've read these, it'll be time to return to quilting.

Edited to add; when I arrived at school this afternoon, I asked how the test went. She told me it was fine, and that there was no reason to worry!!!!!

1 Nov 2011

How to make a broom

First, collect lots of jacaranda twigs off your grandparents back lawn.
Second, ask for help from your loving grandmother to attach said twigs to the broom handle.