Sunday, January 31, 2010


Tomorrow it's back to school for the boys. All day Friday was spent labelling and labelling books and clothes and sorting lots of stationery, but by the end of the days the schoolbags were packed and sitting ready by the back door. At least it left us with time for a trip to the pool today (and yesterday). The kids are a bit ready to go back too.

But tomorrow is back to the "real" job too. Boo hoo. Honestly, it's great, but the holidays went just that bit too fast this year.

Stitchery blocks designed by Hatched and Patched from the pattern "Tim's Things".

And I didn't finish any pattern writing either ..... and Callum and Kane start at 8.35 am now too!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

It's a skirt... oh and a robot cushion

Yesterday we spent most of our time next to the radio, traditionally listening to the Hottest 100 during Australia Day. I sewed up this skirt using the "Cute Skirts" pattern by Favorite Things.

The skirt is very quick and easy to make and I lengthened the skirt a bit for my height. I do really like this pattern and next time I make it, I will make the panels at the back the size smaller. The back is elasticated and I prefer the flatter look to the front. I figure if I make the panels just that bit smaller, the skirt will gather less at the back.

Ayden told me that the ducks on the skirt look creepy, so I guess this one will be for home :) For some reason I only saw spots on the fabric when I bought it!

Handy Ayden also told me that I needed to make more of this cushion red, so a quick trip to Ballarat Patchwork to buy the last fat quarter. Trust me to design the stitchery first and the construction second... and Ayden should get back to his Geography homework too.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

I just love a scrap...

Thanks to Stephanie's Challenge, I have been working on these strip pieced blocks every now and again. At the moment they are not square, but I will trim them down to 6" finished blocks after a good press and a bit of starch.

Just asking ... has anyone ordered recently a pdf pattern from Whole Grain Baby? The website says that a pattern would be emailed within 24 hours but I ordered on 10 January. I have sent a couple of emails but not sure what to do next.

Last week of holidays next week. Books, uniforms, shoes bought, haircuts booked and a couple of days of holiday program booked for Callum and Kane to get everything organised ... and a few days without brothers for Ayden to finish off his holiday homework. Now, I just have to track down the two different styles of school socks that the boys would like..

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Escape to the Beach...

We escaped for a few days at the beach. It looks a bit cloudy but the kids swam each day.

Played on beaches between Port Campell and Apollo Bay on the Victorian coast.

Encouraged them pose for pictures.

Lots of coastal walks and runs, and walks through the Otways National Park, sand castles, shells, boogie boards, steps and a waterfall..... and takeaway.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Taaa daaah ...Art Smocks

Last night I finished appliquing the initials to the front of the boys new art smocks. I don't know what my problem was, but they were sooo tedious to make. Maybe it was all the binding that goes right up the back, about 2 metres in each art smock. They were made using Kane's old smock that I unpicked as a pattern.

The boys are very pleased with them, and Callum took one look at the fabric on the initials and commented that I would have to put spotted fabric in there somewhere! Yep, that's me. I'm very hopeful that these smocks won't go missing and I won't have the kids with the big black stripes on their school uniforms this year.

And best of all ... I saved enough money on these to buy myself some new scissors. Clever!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Gifts ..

Last week I received two wonderful packages, no, not more etsy shopping, but gifts from both talented and generous bloggers.

I don't often enter giveaways but could not resist congratulating Christine on her two years of blogging at Aunties Quaint Quilts, and entering the giveaway. I could not believe that I was the lucky winner of this beautiful table runner. Thank you Christine. The fabrics used and the quilting are just perfect. The table runner is already in use and I just love it!

This package was such a surprise to me. It was a replacement angel package as I missed out on my Stitchers Angel swap arriving, and Lisa had nominated to be my replacement. Lisa is such a prefect stitcher and I will treasure her gifts. We were both test sewers for Melly & me and I have a piece of Lisa's work already in my collection.

The zippered bag (all photographed on the reverse of my table runner) is appliqued with a vine on each side, and the back is made up of small patchwork squares. Lisa's fabric choice is perfect for me too! My kids are in absolute awe of the pear pincushion and there is a felt needle book too.

Thank you so much Lisa, I appreciate all the extra work and cost that was involved in being my replacement angel, and your generosity and kindness. Your gifts will be coming with me to my next craft group for a show off to my stitching friends!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

the monkeys at the zoo..

Yesterday we took the kids for the big day out to the Melbourne Zoo. Matt took these beautiful photo's of the lemurs, and many more (so did the kids).

The kids loved the lemurs, otters, meerkats, all the monkeys, seals and penguins. We didn't even make it all the way around the zoo before closing time.

I couldn't resist this pic.. near the Elephants. Happy and tired family at the end of the day.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Summer ..

For the past few days we have been trying to enjoy the holidays and keep cool too. Our days have ranged between 37 degrees and 40 degrees. Trips to the swimming pool, movies and late evening trips to a lake and playground to stretch our legs and scare away some of the cabin fever. Very appreciative of our new air conditioner too. Sweet pic of Maya taken by Ayden.

I've been tackling the scrap box (when I was brave enough to get close to the iron) to make a start of my strip piecing for Stephanie's challenge. Kane was my helper. Photo by Kane.
A few bundles arrived today.... packages from Sweet Pea Fabrics, HomeGrown Pillows and patterns from Sewing Garden. They were bargains too!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

cheap, cheap ...

20 cent patterns from the op shop for a wrap skirt (1976) and dress for Maya (1981).

The kids have been unpicking last years wrecked art smock to use as a pattern...

Thrifty shopping ..... or too much spending on etsy last week?

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Recycle .. toddler dress to sweet pj's

Finally, finally, I am on annual leave from the "Real Job", hurray! Nearly a month off work. The kids who have had to be very patient and good while I worked madly finishing off the reports, and Matt and I juggled our jobs around the school holidays, are now doing the fun things that were promised.

And I managed a bit of sewing. I noticed that Maya is a bit short on summer pajama's and thought I should be able to fix that.

This poor shirred toddler dress that I made a couple of years ago has been unpicked and made into shorts and binding for the pj's (first pic). No cost pajama's using bits and pieces from a range of patterns in my stash. Maya was pretty unhappy about the unpicking of the dress, but she is pleased now.

A bit more shopping at the Book Despository before Christmas (some photoshop and illustrator books too) so I am full of ideas!

Monday, January 4, 2010

No large pieces of fabric were harmed ...

Inspired by Annie, I'm back working on my 9 patch quilt-a-long. The scrap box can almost have it's lid closed, and I can honestly say that not a single large bit of fabric was harmed .. and a large bit is a fat eighth to me!


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