Tuesday 30 December 2014

That BIG gift.

I know many of you are waiting to know just what that great big gift of mine could be, and why it should need sooooo much space in my room.
This is just a half of it!
It is very heavy, Santa had to help me move it.
Counting all the pieces and checking them twice, before he begins construction.
 Uh oh! 
There is one piece missing.
Never mind, he built it anyway!
What you see here is 60 inches of Grace Pinnacle quilting frame.
 That's fine with me, I can practice to my hearts content on smaller pieces.
 By the time I am ready for an upgrade to the larger frame, the missing part will have been here for a looooooong time! LOL
 Here are just a few of the spares! I'll need to find somewhere safe to put them, until we are ready for them.
So staying with the 60 inch version, rather than the 120 means there is still a little room left on that wall and things pretty much remained as they were, however, once it grows......
I see a massive learning curve in my near future.
So, now that cat is out of it's bag, what else did Santa deliver?
Tony has made a habit of purchasing me a lovely Christmas flower arrangement for our table. This year my floral gift came in the form of a bouquet of Christmas lilies. They smell divine.
 When we purchased my little scooter I immediately called it 'The Bumblebee' due to it's lovely yellow colour.
 So a pair of bumblebee stickers came along amid my gifts.
Love it!
I know I took loads more pictures of lots of lovely crafty gifts before I put them all away, but do you think I can find them?
My pen pal Maxine in Australia sent along three lovely little kits for ornaments and wall hangers.
And the lovely Janice sent along a cute wee cheese board and knife.
Some poppy napkins and pins.
And the 2015 Homespun calender.
Which of course will go up here in my room.
Thank you Janice. :-)
I have spread out on the floor behind me, a project that has been awaiting my attentions for a long, long time.
It's been in and out of it's box several times.
It's time it got finished.
Watch this space.
Soon I'll be announcing the name of this room of mine, but I'll wait just a little longer, in case anyone else wants to add their two pennies worth. 
And maybe even get some goodies from me for your efforts.
Back to work...

Sunday 28 December 2014

Where to start?

With the most important gift of all, of course!
Shez was my SSCS giver.
Remember this beautiful ornament that she made for me?
It is hanging on my tree in my sitting room.
Shez didn't stop there with the hand made lovliness.
 Look, I got a whole plethora of goodies.
 I adore this hand stitched wall hanger. 
 And another cute wee snowman.
Also in the package were a fat quarter of Christmas fabric and two patterns. 
Thank you Shez for taking part in Chookys SSCS and thank you for my lovely gifts.
Thank you also to Chooky for all that she does, not just for the SSCS but all through the year, with beautiful encouraging and inspirational posts and ideas, about everything, not just stitching but blogging and life in general. Love you Chooky. xx
The SSCSwapper who received gifts from me, was Maria. I already had a lovely thank you email from her and she made a lovely blog post here.
Thank you Maria for taking part in the SSCS, I'm so glad you like your gifts. xx
I have lots more to show and much more to tell, but I'll save that for other days.
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and that the SSCS ladies all enjoyed taking part as much as Maria, Shez and myself did.

Sunday 21 December 2014

Preparing for Christmas.

I've picked up plenty of extra shifts over the next few weeks as one of my colleagues has to take time off work following an operation on her knee and another has taken some time off over the holidays. So I'll not have much time to cram in the last minute things and shopping, before the big day.
Now that my SSCS package has arrived, (well it arrived a while ago, but life got in the way) I thought I would show the ornament part of the gift. I sent one of my button ball ornaments to Maria. She blogged about it here. I was delighted to read all of the lovely comments she received about it.
I made and sent one more button ball then started on a third...........
I don't think the recipients of these next two items will be reading my blog over the next few days, so it should be safe to show them here. I made two pairs of pot holders for two special people.

 This is the first time I have tackled binding a round item. There is one little tuck, but I'm sure I'll be forgiven.
The square ones were much easier! LOL
There is a quilted gift bag stashed under the tree and a second one will be appearing later today. I'll try to get a photo of them later in the week.
I may have lots of extra shifts, but I also made sure to take a few odd days off too. Today is one of those days. So, time to sew and pop into town to find a new dress. Something light and summery.
In other news, my giant Christmas gift has arrived, it was smuggled in and wrapped while I was at work one day. It is so big that it comes in two boxes. One for each tree. LOL  Well, one for the blue tree and one to sit on the sitting room floor, cause it's too big to tuck in anywhere.
I should take photos
Time to hang out some laundry, then play with my sewing machine and Christmas fabrics.

Wednesday 17 December 2014

Yay! At last we have internet!

So now I get to bore you with pictures of our new home! Hehe.
I think all of the furniture is now settled with the exception of a large bookcase which arrived after I had installed this tree!
There is more than enough room in this massive hallway to accommodate a much larger tree. LOL
But this one will do just fine, and after Christmas I'll move the book case and hang some more pictures. For now I've put up only Christmas pictures.
 Of course, if you know me at all, then you will know that there must be two trees.
My red and gold tree is in the sitting room this year.
 It is sporting my wonderful new SSCS ornament.
Thank you again to Shez and Elf Chooky.
We have already sat out here several times to eat meals, it is a lovely spot to rest, out of the sun, but still nice and warm.
While I was outside I snapped a quick pic of the window of my room. You can see my sewing machines in there!

Those bushes will be getting the chop soon, at least one of them will get the heave ho!
They block quite a bit of light.
The wee bed in the foreground will also be cleared and I'll fill it with lilies and maybe some roses.
Here is a question for you....
What shall I call this room?
1) My play room.
2) The sewing room.
3) The craft room.
4) The Studio.
Leave me a comment. I might even manage to rustle up a wee prize and pick a name out of a hat!
How are your Christmas plans and Christmas stitching coming along? 
All set?

Tuesday 9 December 2014

We're in!

I've popped into work, to use their internet as we are not yet hooked up at the new place.
Thanks to our wonderful friends and family and lots of hard work we had everything moved in to the new place by Friday night. In fact by bed time, we were peetty much sorted.
I took a few photos, just to give you a taste.
This of course is the most important seat in the house.
 In the same room is an almost entirely bare wall, Santa tells me I may not even be able to leave the shelf unit there!
something big is on the way.
 Another very important seat, this wee spot is all set up for cross stitching.
Look at all the sun pouring in from the dining room.
 Speaking of the dining room.
I know I'm home and settled, because the cuckoo clock is out of his box and back on the wall.
Time to go home, if you want me, I will be in the pink room.

Wednesday 3 December 2014

OMG! Progress.

 Now that the majority of the secret sewing is completed and on it's way, I've been able to spend some quality time with Sleeping Beauty again. Here is where she was when I last showed a progress picture here on my blog back toward the end of September.
And here she is now! 
Wow, I see a huge difference.
But I'm still only on the first page. LOL
I have made a change to the charted design, see the curly-Qs on the image below? I left them off. The folds and drape in the pale green fabrics looks lovely as it is charted, with clever use of thread shades and blends, then the curly-Qs are beads which seem to just sit on top of the design and don't have any folds or shading in them at all. They just look odd in my opinion, so I left them off and filled in their spaces with the thread used in the surrounding areas. Now I'm beginning to wonder about all the spaces I left for beads in the pale blue area.......
Watch this space.
In other news.
The piles of boxes are growing, little collections of items are lurking in all manner of places.
The walls are bare, as all the pictures are down.
Dresser tops are bare and ornaments have been carefully packed.
Yesterday I planned to make a casserole for tea, then after the meat had defrosted I remembered that I had packed the casserole dishes!
Only two more sleeps.
Still not excited.
Packing up is just a chore.

Monday 1 December 2014


In just a few short days, we will be on the move again!!
Hopefully for the last time.
So, my life is once again making it's way into boxes.
The walls of my playroom are bare, all of my pictures are down and packed away ready to move.
 The cupboards are also bare.
 And collections of boxes are lurking in all manner of places.
On Friday morning a BIG van will appear and friends and family will help us to load it all up and then unload it all after a short drive.
You know I'm not excited, I'm so over moving!!
It feels like we only just got settled here, yet here we go again.
I am looking forward though.
I know there is a great new room for all of my stash. Hopefully I'll get to play in there for many years and have many new adventures with my sewing machines. (More about that later).
There is a lovely kitchen and living areas, even an area Tony can call his own. (No, not the garage! LOL)
A garden with which we can do as we please. 
I keep trying to picture what it will be like, with all of our stuff in it.
I must admit, I'm struggling.
But, I will make it my own.
In other news, before I packed up most of my sewing stuff I did do a little more sewing.
I made some pretty pot holders, as Christmas gifts. Then packed them away, before I thought about finding the camera!
One of my machines is still out and able to play, and of course there is fabric to hand, so just maybe I'll get some more made, before that final machine goes back into it's box for that one last move.
I've become a regular at the new sewing shop. The ladies are very friendly and we have established that the new place is across the road and two doors up from one of their homes! 
Friendly neighbours. :-)
Santa and I have been looking at quilting frames.
He has been promising for a looooooong time.
Now, we are actually working on it.
That does excite me.
There is no way there would be room for one here, we made sure to get accurate measurements of the new sewing room up the road. Not quite room for a king-size frame! But a queen is fine with me. I can join two pieces together!
Right, must dash off. Our land lady has decided to sell up. We have our fingers crossed for her and hope she gets a quick sale.
There have been several viewings already and another one this morning.
Lots of interest is a good thing right?
Just means I can't stay home and sew.
So I'm off to window shop for an hour, or maybe I'll go waste time with Sue and Claire at Sandy's sewing shop.
(a blend of Sue and her late husband Andy's names).
Claire will be my neighbour.

Monday 24 November 2014

Stitchy stuff.

Yesterday I had a play-date with a pal. Debbie came to play, she brought along a project, her daughter and her sewing machine. She put together this cute wee discovery bag.
Debbie is a child carer/teacher, she has up to 4 preschoolers in her home each day and thought these bags were a great idea.
While Debbie was busy with her project, I finished off a wee gift bag, but forgot to take a photo! 
I also finished this little cutie. It was lying neglected for over two years. I had put the borders on, but never got around to backing it.
Yesterday was it's day!
It's now all packaged up waiting for a trip to the post office.
Debbie brought her daughter with her, while we sewed, Courtney looked through some of my books and asked if she could make a pin cushion. I helped her to make two cute wee nine patches, then I sewed then onto a gusset for her, alas I had no stuffing! But Debbie said she had some at home and would help Courtney to finish it off this week.
Courtney was also looking at my cross stitch pictures and asked if she could do one of those too!
I found a Christmas card kit and sent that home with her. Debbie says she will teach her how to do that too!
Another convert. :-)

Friday 21 November 2014

A new friend.

Way back in May, just not long after I started work at the pool complex, this guy was handed in over the desk. Someone had found him in the car park. He sat for a while on the desk, we were sure someone would come along and claim him, but alas no one did.
 After a while, one of my colleagues moved him into the lost property room.
Well I was in there the other day looking for something and came across him. Poor soul, left in a dark room with a load of smelly gym gear and togs.
I felt so sorry for him, so I sat him on the bosses desk with a note.
I mentioned that he had been in the pound for nearly 6 months and surely I could adopt him.
Now he sits on the back of my chair, and watches while I sew. :-)
Speaking of sewing.
 I bought a quilt hanger for this advent and got it into the post yesterday.
It is on it's way to my beautiful little grand daughter Faith, along with a bag of chocs for the pockets.
Almost done with the secret stuff, So hopefully I'll be able to blog about my sewing again soon.

Tuesday 18 November 2014

It's here already!

My SSCS giver is Shez.
How do I know this?
Well I panicked when I realized that moving house was coming right about the time we would all be stalking our posties.
I sent an email to Elf Chooky who emailed Shez, who was ready, willing and able to send my package early, just to allay my worries.
Thank you ladies, I realise now, there was really no need to worry, I guess I'm used to things taking a little longer to get up to the Northern hemisphere! LOL
So anyway, my package arrived today. Carefully wrapped in red paper.
 The big black label on the larger package says I must save it until Dec 25th. :-)
But the figgy pudding label says it is my ornament and I can open it now.
So I did just that!
I got a cute wee stocking ornament.
Yes, Shez, I do like it, in fact, I love it.
It's all hand stitched, with gold beads and gold string and cute robins on the back.
Thank you, thank you, thank you. xx
Thank you also to Chooky for all that she does at this time of year.
Love you.

Monday 17 November 2014

It's that time......

No, I'm not moving house just yet, that's in another two weeks!
No, this is far more important.
The time to get all of our SSCS packages onto the sleigh has arrived.
This week, all around the world crafters will be heading to the post office with packages made up of carefully and beautifully crafted items. 
Here is mine, all wrapped and ready to go.
But where is it going?
In other news, we went to the Geraldine Arts and Plants show at the weekend. The local quilters always put on a great exhibition. 
Guess who forgot the camera?
I did take some pictures on my phone, but didn't figure out how to get them off there yet!
While we were there, I visited the local quilty shop and bought a couple of end of bolt pieces, they just sort of jumped into my hand!
At the quilt exhibition I picked up some bundles of New Zealand quilter magazine.
I was a little disappointed with them and glad I hadn't paid full price.
They are very glossy and expensive feeling, with lots and lots of pictures and features about exhibitions and individual quilters. Not too much advertising, but only two or three patterns. Not at all what I'm used to with the UK, US and Aussie magazines, where you get loads of patterns and ideas, amid all of the inspiration. I think I'll stick to 'Country Crafts' for now.
Right, time to head out to the post office.