Sunday, September 28, 2014

I'm acting like I'm ok. Please do not interrupt my performance.

In 41 days I'm going to have a hip replacement.
It's my second one so I know what I'm in for,
but even so I can't wait.

Currently I'm trying to finish the semester at uni,
writing essay after essay
on propaganda, media audiences and death and dying,
while trying to forget how much my body hurts.

I can't sleep at night,
so I lie awake waiting until it's a decent hour
and I can do some sewing before breakfast
so that I can forget how much my leg hurts.

The days that I'm not at Uni,
I spend here in my bed, writing, reading
and cheering the family on as they learn to cook,
to be nice to each other and to manage Annie's hair.

It turns out that it's amazing how much you can do in a day,
even if you think you can't.

I just can't wait till trying to forget the pain isn't one of them!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

#ScrappyQuilt Guest Post:: Sophie Slim

Oh hi there! 

You probably got excited like I do that Deb has put another blog post up, 
but sorry to disappoint! It's not Deb! Surprise!! 

It's Sophie here, from the blog Sophie Slim. I know Deb through blogging, 
but now I also live a few blocks away from her! 
I feel like I'm always popping over to Debs house to borrow or beg for something! 
Tea trolleys, ice cube trays, quilting cotton, advice - Deb is always ready to give. She is amazing!

She asked me today if I could write a wee post for her readers on the #ScrappyQuilt a-long
and I couldn't refuse!

I'm very new to quilting, I've made 1.5 quilts in my life time, all under the guidance and help of Deb! She even lent me her cutting mat, roller cutter and her box of pinky coloured fabric scraps, which sealed the deal that I would be joining in the scrappy quilt along

I've had so much fun cutting out my little squares of fabric to use. I've chosen lots of pinks, reds, oranges and purples, and for the blocks that will have the diamonds in them, I'll be doing a nice bright aqua colour (I think).

Whatever happens, this is going to be one big, colourful, absolutely crazy and beautiful quilt. 

As I sew, I can't help but wonder what each of these little fabrics were used for, and where the rest of them are today. I bet Deb could recall every single fabric I've used from her box of scraps.

I've just finished my second block and its so exciting to see all these little squares come together to actually make something. Something real, that will keep our family warm and happy.

If you're thinking of joining in the quilt-a-long there is still time! Grab some scraps and get cutting, it all comes together pretty quickly in little 5 minute slots that can be found throughout a day. 

And just for fun, my hubs made this sweet little video of me making up my first quilt block!

Pssst - I've also been using the hashtag #Debsquiltalong on IG, come and find me and join in the partay!
Thank you for having me on Deb's blog - it's been an honour to be her first ever guest poster!!
Love, Sophie xxx

Thursday, September 25, 2014

[Planning for Christmas] #100moredays

My friend Melissa has issued a challenge,
there are #100moredays left in the year
and what are we going to do with them and how can we do more!

I can identify with this because it is just a few short weeks till the end of the semester
and then I'm having a hip replacement.
With time running out and the to-do list enormous,
I've been working hard to get all my jobs done, including Christmas.

Annie-Rose is going to get this sewing machine for Christmas
from my good friends at Needle & Nail.

She loves her scrap basket and now she will be able to "sew" too.
It is beautifully made and has moving parts which make it
seem real for a little girl. 

It's going to look super cute in her room too (bonus).

My sweet little nephew Knox is going to get this chainsaw for his birthday.
He was two yesterday but the poor wee man is sick
so he hasn't got it yet.

You can pull that handle like you are starting it.
Knox's daddy is a builder so I know he is going to love a tool like dad.

Reuben who is 12, really wanted one of these for Christmas,
and I thought, why not. He has a wooden gun that he made with a friend
and they have shared custody of it. They are going to LOVE this one.

It has a real scope (is that the word) but the simplicity of a well made toy.
I like that it is definitely a toy rifle, not a real one.
We are not really into guns, but they feature highly in the boy's games.
Who is going to knock imaginative play? not me for sure.

Roo wants this gun and a Tiny Eyes doll and books for Christmas.
I'm pretty sure there are not many 12 (nearly 13) year olds
with such a simple list. I'm happy to oblige.

Needle & Nail are a husband and wife team
with five homeschooled kiddies.
They are down to earth, salt of the earth, real kiwi types.
I love them.

Their toys are beautifully made and will stand the test of time.
They ship anywhere in the world through their Etsy store.

It's actually a good feeling to get some of these things sorted.
The big kids are getting tools and I need to find some books for Annie.
Any suggestions anyone??

I'm going to make zippered pouches for all the teachers
but I figure I can do that while I'm recuperating.
All in all Christmas presents are getting organised.
Another thing to cross off the list.

What's on your list? 
If you join in, don't forget to use the #100moredays hashtag

Sunday, September 21, 2014

6000 Photographs

Today I posted photo number 6000 to Instagram.
I love taking photos, not just because I like taking pictures,
but I like telling stories.

My story is of a mum and a wife and a student
and someone who makes random stuff.

My story is about making fun with what you have,
and making life pretty.

My story is about finding the positive in difficult situations
while being real about how life is.

Yes Instagram is a happy place,
but a happy place is an attitude.
It's about finding colour in a day
that might otherwise just be grey.

My story is a work in progress.
Instagram is where I show the work happening,
both in my attitude to life and to the things I do.

So today I'm pretty happy to celebrate 6000 photos,
and I'm really looking forward to the next 6000.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Some more information #scrappyquilt #quiltalong

I know that a few of you have already begun to sort fabrics and cut scraps
for your quilts. It's so exciting to see the little piles grow. 
As I said in the first post, two really good patterns are the Scrappy Sixteen Patch
 and Katy's Scrap vomit.

Actually it really doesn't matter what you do,
some of you have existing scrappy projects that just need a push along,
and that is completely fine too.

I'm making a scrap vomit, because they are my favourite.
I'm planning on making as many of the A blocks as I can this week.
I need 18 for the bigger quilt (or you need 12 for the smaller quilt)

The A block is 49 2 1/2" square sewn into 7 rows of 7 squares.
Easy peasy.

I'm going to sew a few more rows before I start sewing blocks
just because I want to spread the colours
and I'm to lazy to sort them all out.

That is all there is to it!
What are you waiting for?? As Nike says, Just Do it :)

Don't forget to tag your photos on Instagram #scrappyquilt
I can't wait to see how you all go.

Aim for 2-4 blocks if you can this week,
but even two will be great. 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Raffle quilt for the Steiner school fair.

The Steiner school fair is coming up soon
and they asked me if I would make a quilt to raffle.
Of course I said yes! I used some low volume fabrics
and a handful of lovely scraps that Cat gave me.

The theme of the fair is woodlands,
and so Shenleigh quilted it with this pattern of swirls and leaves.
I used some of my favourite fabrics in here.
It makes for a very restful quilt that hopefully will 
appeal to a wide range of people. 

We are really enjoying Steiner school.
We've tried lots of different education options
over the last 16 years, and we learned early one that not all schools
are created equal!

But the structure and routine of the Steiner way
really suits our younger children,
and we hope that it will continue to be a place for then to grow
until they finish high school. 

To take these photos we popped down to see the last of the graffiti house 
before it all comes down. The whole house was covered in graffiti,
inside and out. It was amazing.

I just have to bind this one and it can go off to school.

Great to tick another job off the list.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014


Yesterday while I was sitting at Uni,
Clare messaged me at said: 
"Would you please give me your three best tips for a
beginner who wants to start a scrap quilt! x"

I thought for a while and wrote back:
1. Anything cut small enough goes together so don't stress about matching
2 Just do it
3. Just do it!!

We messaged back and forth for a bit and I suggested Katy's famous Scrap Vomit

I said, I have a bunch of scraps (of course)
and I haven't made a scrap vomit this year
so I'll do one as well and we can encourage each other!

And then I thought, what the heck!
maybe some other folks want to join in.
We can all encourage each other!!

A scrap quilt is my favourite quilt to make. 
I made all of the quilts in this post last year just in snippets of time
before breakfast in the mornings.
I made other quilts too, that wasn't all I did
plus I'm studying and have a family to love.

What I'm saying is, you don't have to have lots of time to do this.

It really helps if you leave your sewing machine set up somewhere,
even on top of your bedroom drawers 
or a corner of the kitchen bench. Just so you can sew a few seams
when you have a spare minute!!

So I think we will start next week.
This week's task is to drag out all your scraps and odds and ends of fabric
and press it and if you have time start cutting 2 1/2" squares.

So what do you think?? keen??
want to join in?? Clare and I are going to do it anyhow.
I think we will use the tag #scrappyquilt on Instagram
If anyone wants to make us a fancy button, we would like that
but otherwise lets just do it.

We can easily get this done before Christmas,
would make an awesome present for someone!!

Also, by the way, Congratulations to Jennifer and Prudence
who won a copy of Imagine quilts and a fabric bundle respectively.
These lovely ladies have been contacted and I'll get their parcels off to them shortly.

Edit: Oh what about this for a button??
Save for your blog or repost on Instagram