Monday, 28 January 2013

Its Raining

"Its raining, its pouring, the old man is snoring"

How many people sang that as kids and then sang it to their own children?

It has rained non-stop now for at least 48 hours, and the forecast is not showing it stopping for another 12. And when I talk of rain I mean it is bucketing down, not showering or drizzling. As usual there is flooding in Northern NSW and in Queensland. What a land of contrasts! Last week there were bushfires everywhere, with evacuations and home loss due to that. This week it is floods, and more people being evacuated.

The rain is reminding me of school days in the rain. Walking to the bus stop and being drenched before you made it onto the bus. We had clear plastic covers for our hats. They may have covered the hats, but because the hats were wide brimmed, the plastic formed a conical shape on you head, and the rain just slid down the sides and all over you making you even wetter than ever. Plastic macs just flapped around your legs and dripped on your shoes. On the bus, the smell was quite memorable - wet plastic, and wet wool. Windows steamed over and everyone cold and cranky.

Getting to school wasn't much better. Hanging the macs and other wet things on the pegs outside the door onto the verandah. Shoes still soggy, no heating or means of drying off. Miserable. And then you would need to get from classroom to classroom. If you had to go to the canteen, that was another trek across the puddles in the playground.

At home it was better. Sitting dry in my room and watching the rain run down the window panes. The bleak day outside and I was warm and comfortable and dry. Until I had to go to the outside loo, which was at the end of the garden and down the path.  Having to bolt past the overhanging shrubbery & trailing vines, which my mother had planted in the vain hope that it would hide the atrocity in the garden. Days like this were jig saw days, or sitting at my desk writing to my pen pal, or doing homework.

These days, a rainy day is a good day to be holed up downstairs playing with fabric. And that is exactly what I have done today.  I have been designing a quilt for Aussie Heros, for a chap who wanted a black and yellow quilt. I have gathered all the black & yellow fabrics I have and have created a design which I hope will a) work, and b) appeal to him. Will take some photos to post as I begin constructing it.  It is both terrifying and exciting cutting into the fabric, planning the design and praying it all works out. 

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Making cards this time

I have had little time to sew this last couple of days :-(  But I did manage to spend some time on Tuesday night with a few other ladies at a Catalogue Launch for Stampin Up.

My daughter has been doing scrapbooking since forever, and is a keen photographer.  Her scrapbook pages are gorgeous - very inventive and have lots of lovely decorative stuff on them.  I have resisted getting into scrapbooking for ages as I already have one expensive hobby! 

However, when I first moved to the Central Coast, I was asked to a Stampin Up card stack night, (where you make 6 cards in 3 different designs) and not being on the social scene here at that point, I decided to go.  Well the resistance has crumbled and I have a stock of stamping products.  I don't go often any more, so Tuesday was something special.

We made three little designs, all quite cute.  Looks like Kath will be hosting in a few weeks time, so I will probably go, depending on the day.

There they all are.  The one right in the front is so cute - its a little pocket into which you can slip something secret.  It is made with the Big Shot Die Maker, and in this case, it has a couple of lollipops in it.  Not so secret LOL.
My personal favourite is the card at the back on the left.  Three cute little cut outs from gorgeous paper, and with a smaller one over the top, stamped with a tiny stamp.  Love the colours too.

Monday, 21 January 2013

Aussie Hero Sewing Bee

Another inspirational day at the sewing bee for Aussi Hero Quilt.  If you don't know about them you can read about what they do here.  There were 5 of us plus Jan-Maree, the co-ordinator.

So we pieced backings, pinned quilts, and trimmed the blocks that people have sent in as part of the Block of the Month.  And gossiped and ate lunch, and gossiped some more, then went back and did it all again!  So much gets done in such a short time when you get a group together like that.

Jan-Maree told us stories of the service men & women she has gleaned from emails which go back and forth, and read out some thank yous from the troops.  Just so much makes me want to do some more!

Yesterday afternoon, DH took me to see Skyfall (at last!) at El Paradiso in Ettalong and then to La Fiamma for dinner.  What an amazing place.  It is all art deco and Italianate decor which sounds awful, but works very well.  There is a motel, cinema complex and quirky little alleyways and courtyards, which would be lovely on a warm summer evening.  Sadly it was quite cool and drizzly.  Not that I am complaining after the heat of the last week.

Gotta choof off and do a bit of sewing.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Stitching Hearts Day

I have been very slack with blogging, as there have been too many other distractions.

Today was huge.  Jan and I were off to Stitching Hearts, our charity sewing group.  We meet in Cabarita, and that is well over an hours drive from here, more like 1.5 hours.  Still with school holidays on, and many people still not back to work, the trip was OK.  Although it was a terribly hot day, and even with air con going it wasn't all that comfortable to be in the car.

We had a challenge before Christmas. Jackie produced little packets of fabric for everyone, and we had several weeks over Christmas to produce some blocks using these fabrics.  Well some of these came in today, and we had heaps of fun putting them all together and arranging into a quilt top.  There were enough blocks there to sew into 2 separate tops.  Woohoo!  Maria sat at the machine & did some of the piecing.  Great stuff Maria.

The other thing we did today was a stock take of the quilts we had in the cupboard.  There were 39!  Some are going to Kathleen York House which is a centre for women who are recovering from substance abuse.  There is a pile to go to the local Meals on Wheels organisation.  It is awesome to actually see them all laid out on the floor.

Next time we meet we are planning a sewing bee to get some more quilts pieced.  I spent most of the day cutting fabrics, sorting into piles & kitting them up so that next time we can just sit and sew.  I brought some fabric home with me and intend to put together some more over the next couple of weeks.
Sunday is my birthday - too many years to contemplate, but I give thanks to the Lord for each day I have in this lifetime.  Looking forward to some family time.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Playing with blogging

Such a hot day today that I really didn't feel like doing anything.  However I revved myself up and finished quilting a quilt for my charity group this afternoon and after dinner I put on the binding.  The binding still needs to be stitched down by hand, but I'll do that while watching TV in the next few days.

The quilt is a gorgeous green and black one made by one of the members of the charity group Stitching Hearts, to which I belong.  Cheryl used a very simple block, but the colour choices in this quilt are stunning!  And I think the lime green backing is a perfect choice.

I had big ideas of doing some spiffy quilting on it, but in the end I decided simple stitching in the ditch would be enough.  Anything else would detract from the simplicity of the quilt itself and spoil it.  After much deliberation, I decided to create a strippy, scrappy binding in various greens.  Plain black looked flat, and one fabric in any shade of green looked boring.  I am happy with the end result.  The quilt will be going back to Stitching Hearts on Thursday.

Now that took me about half an hour to work out how to insert this photo.  Clicked all the buttons at the header, with no luck, read the help text (that is desperation), even watched the video.  All to no avail.  I had totally given up on ever getting that done, when I clicked on the only button I hadn't tried - the html button.  Bingo!  The load image icon there prompted me to load a photo from my computer. 

So it looks like I have a new blog, and have managed to create a post for it.  That's enough for one night for a techno challenged wrinkly.  Until next time.