Saturday, January 31, 2009

Two is Enough

This weekend I've had my two eldest grandsons to stay. 13 and nearly 9. What an age difference! I'm stuffed already keeping up with them. Last night we spent nearly 3 hours at the Esplanade park. A really neat place for kids with flying fox, swings, hoops, slides, heaps of things to keep them entertained. Today it was 3 hours at the pool and they really enjoyed themselves. We had a barbeque for dinner and back to the park. As much as I love them to bits they are much easier one at a time... haha. I must go to the Esplanade more often though. It is all of 1 km away from my home but I only go there when the kids are home. It is so beautiful and serene, lots of colour this time of the year and very busy, although peaceful with the trees and the bush walks.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Valentines for fabrics

I have to tell you about this really neat blog Kim is giving away prizes of fabric and novelties to celebrate her 100th blog! What a neat idea. It's gorgeous valentine's day colours and first prize is 100 squares in a little mini purse. She's accepting the first 400 comments and hopefully I was 370.. fingers crossed anyway.

I really liked her Some Thoughts I Try to Live By:
“Those that are flexible never get bent out of shape.”

“The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.”
“If your LOT in life is empty . . . put a SERVICE station on it.”
“When you have a problem, GO TO WORK”
“We are the Creators of our Own Happiness.”

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Big Hearts Little Hearts

Like they say you have to live each day because you don't know what's going to happen tomorrow. My big girl is in hospital tonight. She had another heart episode today. Nette suffers from Wolfe Parkinson White Syndrome but until recently it only affected her once in several months. The trouble with WPWS is it will strike and dissappear. The only way we found out about it was when she was called into hospital for her liver transplant and they did the ECG. She had had many ECG's before that but it never showed up. Luckily it did that night because the Head Cardiologist attended the operation. I'm sure she's going to be okay. I wish there was some medication she could take but unfortunately the drugs they can use affect her anti-rejection drugs for her liver.

So my little man, Cam arrived at 5pm to stay with his Nan for a few hours. He's such a joy to have around and so easy to keep amused. Even loves playing with my fabric and designing quilts! Tonight he had scissors and fabric, happily playing at the table for awhile and he had made this.. he'd made one for his Mum too. Cam is nearly 9 but he is such a loving kid. He melts my heart big time!
UPDATE - This morning I went up to see my girl and she was very distressed with pain, but they'd just done an ECG and it was okay. They had stabilised her heart last night with drugs. The Cardiologist was called and she had the diagnosis in five minutes. Turns out she has some Syndrome that is like arthritis in the chest bones. Causes a lot of pain every now and again very much like a heart attack. The irregular heart beat yesterday was just 'normal' but obviously worrying enough since she's been diagnosed with WPWS. Huge relief. She'll go home later today and rest for a few days. She'll live to be a hundred I reckon.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Monday - roll on Friday

Wow, I've just been to our Club tonight and oh am I ever envious of some of the ladies who can stay at home and sew at whim. Our speaker had endless quilts, with dyed fabrics, applique, tried and true innovations..some were very large bed quilts. I wish I'd taken my camera but do I need any more IDEAS?? Definitely too many days between Monday and Friday.

I want to introduce you to Carolyn designs the most incredible and beautiful one of a kind teddy bears. The ideal gift for a special child or a big kid even. But Carolyn has a special place in my life because we grew up together, right next door till I was 16 and left home. She was always knitting or sewing and making things as a child. And she hasn't stopped! I last saw Carolyn around 20 years ago (well Tauranga is a long way for a country girl) but I still remember our childhood. It is such a long time since we were kids and went swimming with her Mum at the pool across the road, bike rides and building huts down by the river and yet I can remember it like it was yesterday. Go and have a look at Aunt Hyacinth and Preston Bear - they are just adorable - keepsakes.

When you've had a brush with a health problem you start to remember the little things in life so much more vividly. Everything is so beautiful, you see things you've not noticed before and yet you've seen them everyday! And you realise how lucky you are to have had those people who've put footprints on the sand of your life.

Tomorrow I need to make a friends birthday present and get it off to Australia, Wednesday I'm going to my friends home again to continue on our allotment quilts, Thursday a committee meeting and Friday my two eldest grandsons arrive for two days. And then back to work on Monday. Oh well, I love being a Nan so it's two days of pride and joy, cuddles and laughs.
On that note, I should be in bed catching up on some sleep before they come. Night all.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Blue Skies , Sunburn and Smiles

what a great weekend. It started in Woodville watching my grandson racing in the motorcross on Saturday morning. I only saw the first race as I had to carry on to Napier but it is so emotional seeing these little people from 4 years of age, racing hard out on something twice their size.

He just gives it all he can and again, second time in 3 months he came 9th in his class. Which is 9th in New Zealand... I am such a proud Nan! The weather was so hot and dry all weekend. I then drove up to Napier to babysit my two youngest grandchildren while the others went to Crusty Demons. I had a brilliant time with my granddaughter whose nearly 5 going on 25 years and Alex who's 3. We covered canvases with some scraps of fabric that were around diecuts. They cut them into little pieces and then we ironed them down and stretched them over the canvas. The kids get bored easily so this was a quick and easy project that kept them both amused till bedtime.

No 1 grandson, 13, had a great time at the show. He's mad on Mountainbiking - I just hope he doesnt try any backward flips.

And I saw 3 quilt shops on the way. Clare Moore in Waipukurau has a fantastic collection of fabrics. I could have stayed for ages but after 1 fat quarter and 4 fat eighths I left. In Dartmoor Road, Puketapu, not far from this statue carved out of a tree trunk13 minutes from Taradale I found Riverside Wineries which also is a Quilt shop but not open on Sundays.. but then I went to J and J Handcrafts in Greenmeadows which is open Saturday and Sunday 10-3pm. Hmm, I dont think it'll be the last time I go there!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Shoes - who cares about shoes!

I've just picked up 10 of the plastic shoe boxes for $28 NZ and I'm putting some of my fabric collections in them so I can store more fabric on my shelves. It's such a beautiful day over here in Palmerston North though I am too nauseous to enjoy it much. I used to feel sick only during the night and mornings (no chance of being pregnant haha) but now it's lasting all day and worse after I've eaten. But never fear, I've received the letter from the Hospital and my colonoscopy is now only 'semi urgent' and no date available yet haha. Oh well, life goes on. I will go and get some more drugs from the Dr to stop me feeling so uck. (Mind you it doesn't stop me eating altogether!)

On a positive side I have kept doing ... it helps pass the time. This is my scrappy floral quilt so far. I finished sewing the pieces at the weekend and now just have to put it all together. Very busy isn't it???

Monday, January 19, 2009

My sewing room

Where have I been? Totally immersed in fabric, patterns, rubbish, more fabric and more fabric and not to forget magazines. I have folded and refolded all my fabrics and cut off most selveges (thanks to selvege blogspot.. gosh I am such a sucker for creative ideas.. now to start the quilt?)Cameron, No 2 grandson was here yesterday when I found these blocks. I bought them at a Club Suitcase Sale so Cameron laid them out and desighed a quilt so now all I have to do is put it together.

But I am nearly 90% organised in my sewing room, give or take a collection of 'things' on the bed and my desk and even in my bedroom now waiting to go into my 'craft' cupboard.. So now this mess

and this mess........

are tidy again. I've hung up my display wall (goold old fluffy backed plastic tablecloth ($6)

My Horn Cutting table is on wheels so can be easily moved around. The unit in the corner is actually a cupboard and I've taken the door off which now forms the bench on top of the cheap Warehouse $10 shelves. Need a bit of tidying up here yet but tv fits perfectly. I've folded all my metre pieces to fit lengthwise on the shelves.
My drawers however are overflowing...
I'm thinking they are too FULL! so I'm now going to have a look for a shelf to put up above the mirror to hold storage boxes

such as
They're plastic shoe boxes from Payless Plastics and on special they are 10 for $28.00. They have holes in both sides for ventilation and double ended openings. So far I've bought two (they were'nt on special) and one has black and white fabrics, the other my black and gold collection. But I'll get more for eye spy, spots, charm squares etc etc and they could easily fit on the shelf. Where is that man in my life when I want one????

Maybe I put him away somewhere safe in my sewing room..... or I ignored him too much ... must find one in the future.. could be useful to have a man in my life!!

More photos when I finish the other side but for now I'm off to town with a friend to the Spotlight sale... WHY? Actually I'll be looking for fabric for my Saturday sewing group. What I buy may be a different story.

and this

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Time to get organised

My drawers arrived today. A real bargain for $65. They are just like brand new, maybe a few years ago. I reckon I'll get quite a bit of fabric in them which will give me more room in my sewing room.

I had an email from my friend Myra today. Myra got me into quilting about four years ago and she's the one who's responsible for my addiction!!!! Haha. We're going to swap 2 1/2 inch strips between ourselves, 10 at a time.

40 will make a quilt so this should be fun. I haven't seen Myra since I moved down here in 2005 and she's going to come to our local Quilt Show in May. Yes, I can't wait to see her and talk quilts etc etc all weekend. Oh, and I'll have to show her around the fabric shops of course.. hehe.

Nothing achieved on my UFO tonight. Going to the movies tomorrow after work with my friend Robyn. Probably see Australia, the movie.
Thursday night is a get-together of our club committee. Our friend has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer and has to have chemo for 3 months before surgery. This is so sad and reminds us all how vulnerable we all are.

On the good front, my Uncle has been given great news by his surgeon today. The cancer levels in his blood are low and have reduced considerably since his surgery. An xray on Saturday will show whether his lung cancer has grown or not so fingers crossed it hasn't. I am so thrilled for him, for all of us. I can't imagine losing him as well. He's a really great mate.
"Tomorrow, tomorrow, I'll sew more tomorrow, It's only a day away!!" Don't try and imagine me singing.. you can't! Haha. Nite everyone

Monday, January 12, 2009

Another one bites the Dust..maybe

Don't look like much now does it. I found yet another UFO in my spare room so my mission this week is to get it completed. All the ajoining sashings have been cut and pinned ready to be sewn so it's all ready to go. WATCH THIS SPACE! I found this blog of Quilt Studio Slob. What a collection of fabrics etc...obviously built up over a long time. I guess I don't feel quite so bad (but bad enough) about my mess. At last I found a lowboy today in good condition at the secondhand shop at my price!! So it is being delivered tomorrow night and I can tidy up my fabrics and fill the drawers. Hopefully then I will have some shelves to put in my bedroom for my quilting mags and my spare room/sewing room will have so much more room. I'd like a tallboy next! .... oh with lots of drawers too hehehe.
My friend has cancer. The surgeon was to see who today about treatment. Fancy feeling tired over Christmas and next thing your lungs have collapsed and you're fighting for your life. So fit, so young at heart but scary too.
I've had two messages from the Surgeon wanting to discuss when I will have my colonoscopy and I've rung them back with my mobile number for him but still waiting. I guess no news is good news though.

My time on the net is up. Now to get this UFO on the way. Night all. (and morning girls across the globe).

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A doing Day

Another weekend gone.. They don't go far. Yesterday I went to see my Mum who got home from a Christmas holiday. She is really strong and coping well on her own. It was my Dad's birthday on Friday and my sister's and I were concerned she'd be upset but she was busy all day. Good on her I reckon. My little sister went to the supermarket on Friday, bought some gladioli's (Dad used to grow and show them) and on the walk home she passed a bar that was playing "Long Tall Lanky Jones".. Our Dad's song. She said the flowers didn't need water when she got home.

After amazing hot temperature's for the last few weeks, today's been very cold and overcast. But I did manage to hang a couple more of my quilts on the clothesline and take photos. This is for George (my 13 year old grandson) and is now ready to go to the quilter. Roses - I have put the border on but might quilt this myself as it's just for me. I made this one a couple of years ago but haven't quilted it yet. It's called "Don't Cut Me Up" by Jacqui Karl in Kimbolton. She designs the most gorgeous quilts and this was my one and only kitset I've bought so far.

The wind was blowing a little when I took the photos and the sun wasn't shining. I'd better do something with this one while I still have little people in the family. My granddaughter will be 5 in March and Alex 4 in June.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Hey ladies, I'm on the cadge. I need heaps of selvege edges off cotton fabrics for a project I want to do. I would like selvege's with a half inch of the fabric attached. I've seen a neat idea for a future challenge but I don't have enough in my stash. Will take quite a few. I'm happy to pay postage so if you have some in your rubbish please let me know and I'll send you an sae.

I found these new quilting terms on the net and I have to laugh

WOMBAT = Waste Of Material, Batting And Time
SABLE = Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy
WHIMM = Work Hidden in My Mind
STASH = Special Treasure, All Secretly Hidden
FART = Fabric Acquisition Road Trip
PIGS = Projects In Grocery Sacks
SEX = Stash Enhancing Experience
CHAOS = Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome

I’ve got plenty of PIGS and WOMBATS. I’m working on my SABLE. I have a few too many FARTS lately and more STASH which gives me great SEX (CHAOS)! As for WHIMM’s I think they’re hidden better than my fabric!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Up to the final border/s

Okay, one top nearly finished.. but what to do next - Have put a think pink border around, now do I put another thin one in another colour Or do I put a skinny green (I know this green doesn't match but it's all I've got at home) with or without the hydrangea borderOr do I put hydrangeas around the outside... Or just the hydrangea

Or something else

Procrastinating.. I said I wouldn't do that anymore??

I've decided to enter another challenge. It's to be inspired by a postage stamp. Have to have the photo in Wellington by 14 January. Yeah, well that's nothing new for me. I've found a stamp with a gorgeous duck on it so now to build a nest!!!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Work in Progress

It is happening. I've yet to work out the order of the blocks but have been playing to see how many more to do!

A friend told me about this neat Kaleidoscope site where you can change your photos into a kaleidoscope Take a look, might keep the kids happy too.
9pm I'm making progress though have been a bit sidetracked today. Will only need to sew the rest of the strips together and then decide on a border. I'm thinking of a green border on two sides with the word Hydrangeas appliqued on. Maybe a 'paint chart' of the colours too.
My friend Carol came home today from their holiday to Fiji. Sounds like she had wonderful time though glad to be home. I am glad too
Time to quit tonight and tidy up a bit. My neck and shoulders get a bit sore after too much sewing. Might even try and find a pattern for my next quilt. I found some gorgeous tho unusual fabric in Arthur Toye's sale yesterday. At $5 metre I couldn't resist it.
Bad girl!
AS for the weight loss I think my scales might be stuck. I'm the same weight I was on Monday.. and I have been good?

A Productive Day

New Years Day was shared with three other quilters and progress was made!! At Last. I am now inspired and motivated!! My sewing machine came home and was set up on the table and I've carried on sewing. I chose a really simple pattern for my hydrangea fabrics and will hopefully have all the blocks finished by tonight, so check again for the photo later. I've set a goal to have both quilt tops done by Sunday. So back to it.

Here's a photo that my Mum had of the Golden Years Quilt I made for their 50th wedding anniversary. I need to hang it outside on the clothesline one day to get the whole quilt.
Have a great day everyone.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

It's Over!!

2008 is over and I can only say I'm glad to see the back of it.

I started the year recovering from breast cancer
In february I was told I could no longer do my job and had to take a secondment into a new job in the legal team (way out of my comfort zone)
I spent about 4 months training away from home.
My dear Uncle was diagnosed with bowel and lung cancer so I went to care for my Aunt who had a stroke 3 weeks before his surgery. (Away from home). His surgery for bowel cancer was successful but there is nothing they can do for the lung cancer.
A week later I was called to hospital here at home as my Dad had had a fall a week earlier (my mum had said he would recover). He was going into a coma and ten days later he passed away. There is nothing to describe losing someone who as been a big part of your life whether it be a friend or family. I know I'm not alone but it is the pits!
Three days after his funeral my Aunt had a heart attack so I went back to help my Uncle through this. She was eventually transferred to a rest home and died a month ago. Aunt and Uncle have always been like my second Mum and Dad and even though it was hard to watch Aunty dying at least she knew who I was and could communicate. I feel happy she will be with Dad and she knew how much I loved her.
I have put on 12 kgs (which takes me back to the heaviest I have ever been) grrrr!!!!!

Today is another year. And it's going to be a good one. My birthday is 9, my Dad's birthday was 9, and I live at No 9. It's time to enjoy life and make the best out of every situation.
I will start looking after myself, healthwise and emotionally.
I will visit Mum, my Uncle and all my children and grandchildren more often.
But I will make more time for the things I enjoy in life like sewing, friends, movies and having fun.

2009 and to celebrate I'm off to sew with three of my close sewing buddies. A shared lunch.. better move it.