Monday, 24 September 2012

Stage two in the garden

Today was stage two of the redesigned backyard,  early this morning I ordered the soil and the mulch, the garden supplier has a mushroom compost blend that he says is great for growing vegetables.  We spread a thick layer of newspaper  over the area, wet this and then,  my youngest daughter and the son who does everything filled the raised vegetable beds with the soil mix.  There is an area in the garden that has sunk, I'm thinking this is due to the sewage pipes and all the rain that we have had this winter.  We filled this in with soil to build it up and then covered the whole area with mulch, all this was done was in a couple of hours.  I left them to finish off while I made lunch, chicken and salads with fresh pita bread that I'd made this morning.  After lunch my son used his Karcher to clean all the paving, while we put away the tools   The yard is looking really good now.  All it needs now is for me to decide what I'm going to plant, and then, hope I can keep the dog from digging everything out.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Blocks, for Aussie heroes

Over the Christmas holidays I became aware of a small group of women who are sewing quilts for our service personell who are fighting in the Middle East, particularly Afghanistan.     This small group, "Aussie Hero Quilts and laundry bags" that started in New South Wales has now spread to all the states of Australia, and I'm not sure how many women are now involved, but I do know the list is growing fast.   Women who are giving of their time and resources to provide as many quilts and laundry bags to as many service personnel as possible.   From humble beginings the current total of quilts that have been sent has reached over five hundred.   Every month there is a new block pattern provided on the website that you can sew and donate, these are then sent to Jan-Maree, who co-ordinates this team,   the blocks that arrive are then sorted and sewn together to make quilts.   Last night I cut and stitched twenty four blocks, these will be mailed off to them today.   It's times like these that I wish I had a longarm machine, to be able to finish every quilt that I make would be wonderful.   This group now provides quilts  not only for troops in Afghanistan but for our soldiers in all parts of the Middle East, and now those serving on HMAS Anzac as well.   These women,  especially Jan-Maree need a medal for the work that they do to make the lives of our forces personell a bit brighter.   I am proud to be able to do the small amount that I do for this cause.  There is a donation button on the website, this is a secure sight and  is provided by Westpac bank,  if you cannot sew then maybe you would be generous with a donation.  You can find Aussie Hero Quilts and Laundry bags on Facebook or at where you will find a long list of thankyous from the people that have received these quilts and laundry bags.   Oh, by the way do you want to know why the laundry bags, well, it is very difficult to find one laundry bag in amoungst a pile of plain blue or grey bags, with a distinctive bag it makes this an easy find.

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Animals two by two

Look what arrived in the mail, I have been waiting seven weeks for this to be delivered.   My youngest grandson is named Noah, and so of course, he has to have an animal themed bedroom.   I have been looking for animal print fabrics to make him his first quilt but until recently hadn't seen anything that I liked,  until I found "Bungle Jungle" by Tim and Beck for Moda, this is it I thought.   I couldn't find it locally though, so had to purchase it online, something I don't like doing but this time I didn't want to miss out.   I have found a pattern on Moda Bake shop by Sew Crafty Jess called Jungle path baby quilt,  as soon as I finish the summer quilt I will be busy cutting these gorgeous animals into pieces for Noah's quilt.   I was hoping to have this ready for Noah's first birthday but because of the delay in getting the fabric I hope it will be ready for christmas.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Mosiac stepping stones

About ten years or more ago, when my daughters were young teenagers on school holidays, I was frequently hearing the usual "I'm bored, what can we do" So I organised some supplies for them to make mosiac pavers for the garden.   Daughter number one decided she did not want to get her hands dirty and daughter number two was enthusiastic enough to finish two of them.  I really liked the designs she made and was hoping she would finish the other two but the holidays finished and she went back to school. The supplies were packed away and forgotten.   I set these two in the garden under an arch way that was covered with a yellow climbing rose and they did look so good.   When I decided to sell the house I lifted them from the garden deciding to take them with me when I left.  While they don't have the same beautiful position in the garden that they once had they are keeping my feet clean when I go to the compost bin.  With the new garden beds in place I find I really need a couple more, not sure I can still buy the same paver anymore though.  A trip to Bunnings to see what they stock in pavers, tiles etc., I wonder if I can encourage one of my daughters to complete the set.

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

A summer quilt top

Pattern from Missouri Star Quilt company by 3Dudes
Yesterday,  between another visit to the dentist, the moulds, impressions, were taken for the plate for my new molars, and shopping  I finished stitching the blocks together for the summer quilt.   I did find with this pattern that it was diffficult to match all seams, in the end I just gave up and made sure that the blocks were just square.   I'm happy with the secondary pattern that emerges,  I tried a couple of other ways to join them but like this one best.   I have sewn on a two and a half inch white border and am thinking of either another scrappy border or just a scrappy binding with the fabric pieces that are left, not sure, what do you think?   I am leaving it on the table to contemplate this as I get on with other things.   It looks so good on the table it may just become a table cloth, except when the grandsons are over, hehe, no messes on this little lovely.

Sunday, 9 September 2012

A summer quilt

Fabrics are Summer house by Lily Ashbury for Moda
Yesterday while browsing through some online quilting sites,  I came across a video on you tube from the Missouri Star quilt company.   It was showing a quick and easy shortcut using 2 &1/2" strips, anything with quick and easy gets my vote,  so last night I rummaged through my stash,  which I don't have a lot of now,  but  I did find a pack of fabrics that I had purchased last year to make a quilt for the family room, these are blues and greens in bright summery colours.  These would be perfect to cut  into strips,  I was able to get all the cutting done last night and this morning set to work to sew these together.  The interesting thing about this pattern is when you have your strips sewn together and then cut into squares,  I cut 10' blocks, you then turn one block around with right sides together so you have a vertical block on top of a horizontal block and then stitch all the way around the two blocks, stitching them together, press then cut twice through diagonally, just like you would for pinwheels.  Press these open and you have some interesting patterns, not sure yet which way I will lay these out.  Let you know when I have them pieced together.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

A home in the corner

When I moved into this house, I brought a few pieces of furniture with me from the last house that I couldn't part with.  This house is much smaller than the house the kids grew up in and while a lot of futniture didn't make it here I was determined that these would.  I have moved these around several times trying to find the right spot for them and sometimes wonder if I should part with them.  Yesterday it was the old treadle sewing machine cabinet which belonged to my grandmother,  I had learned to sew on this machine and was always told it would be given to me, remember,  my sisters don't sew.   Imagine my horror when I found they had taken the sewing machine from the cabinet, it was too old was the comment I received when I asked where it was.  So the poor cabinet has lived in the passage at this house, and to be honest has been in the way of through traffic.   Yesterday I decided to find it a new home, the corner of the family room and kitchen looked like a good spot.   As I pushed it down the passage it rattled and shook on the tiles, then settled as I pushed it into place.  Yes I think it looks good, as I stood back to admire it.   I have two lovely handmade tiles, made by my very clever sister-in-law several years ago positioned above it,  I think I have them a bit too high though,  I will have to lower them,  and sitting atop the cabinet one of the small cases that I collect.   I think the word that is being used a lot these days is vignette, not sure, what do you think. Next to find a home will be the curio cabinet or that will be going.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Here comes the sun

Yah, It's spring, the sun is out and so is my enthusiasm for getting outside in the garden, over the past few weeks I have been planning changes to my backyard, these entail raised vegetable beds and adding a few fruit trees.  Last week I dragged my poor complaining younger son off to the local hardware store for all the supplies needed for the extravaganza I had planned.   I rang son number two to invite him along to lunch at the weekend, oh,  and by the way I will need your help on a little work that we will be doing in the yard, my eldest daughter was included as well, she did a great job of digging out the grass.  With tools in hand we got to work and by the days end and with a beer in hand stood back to admire our work.   I must say that I am very pleased with all that was achieved, everyone worked especially well, and although not quite finished it is looking fantastic, just what I had envisaged.  What would I do without these fantastic kids of mine?  Youngest son returned yesterday to add the cross slats and wire to the posts, now to order the soil and mulch, then onto the planting, can't wait for those fresh summer vegetables and herbs.