Thursday, August 31, 2017

The yellow shirt

Here's a dodgy selfie of me wearing my new yellow shirt. See what I mean about the pleats? Very pretty. The binding on the neckline is actually a bit neater than it looks in this photo honestly. The angle of the photo is a bit peculiar but I wanted to get the top bit in, because the rest is very boring.

I think my yellow shirt was the most exciting thing that happened this week. I sent my uni assignment in, two days early after realising I was just picking at it and making it worse. Now I'm worried about the research paper - I had quite a good idea, or so I thought, but the preliminary work is making me think that it's not going to be very good after all. I might have to come up with something else... never mind. That is a problem for another day.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Wierdo weather

After all that lovely sun during the week it goes and SNOWS on Sunday! A bit strange to happen this late in the winter, although Canberra always loves snow - we only get it maybe once a year and it's very exciting. I went down the coast for the weekend so I was driving back through a couple of little flurries. Nothing to worry about, except that I wanted to watch it and not concentrate on the driving.

The coast was beautiful on Saturday - lovely sunny weather - as I did my footnotes and bibliography until the charge on my laptop ran out. I forgot to pack the charger so I put the brightness on so low I could hardly see and it lasted a few hours. Nearly done. Given the gap this created in my weekend productivity schedule (hahahaha) I put together the new Ikea tv stand we bought to replace the ancient plastic veneer one the previous owners had left for us. With an ancient video player too. It might work - who would know? Who has videos?

This is the after photo, which looks quite good,  but the halfway through photo is a bit of a shocker. I was turning it over after attaching the legs and caught the cord of the lamp that sits on the high shelf and pulled it off ... smashing everywhere. The lampshade, and the fitting, and the bulb, spreading about six feet in every direction. Took me an hour to clean it up, cursing the whole while. I never really did like the lamp though, so that's OK. My first reaction was to get my phone to take a picture ... what have I become?

I was at the beach on my own - I did offer to take children but no-one was free or interested. I also made a shirt which I am wearing at the moment so I will take a photo when I get home to show you! Nice and bright, and possibly on the loose and flowing end of the shirt spectrum, rather than the tailored end, but that's good sometimes when you're feeling a bit plump. I quite like the pleats on the neckline so might use the pattern again.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Sick day today

I felt so dreadful yesterday that I thought I must be coming down with full influenza (minimum - probably typhoid or dengue, not that I'm hypochondriac at all) but after some catch up sleep and a quiet day I feel fine again ... so probably not typhoid. We shall call it a virus, but I might just have been a bit tired and cranky. And if that's not an illness it should be. On the plus side, I had a sofa buddy.

We are at that time of the year when the sun buckets into the living room. Just six weeks in spring and autumn luckily - it would kill us dead in summer - but it is beautiful while it lasts. And yes, it is spring, the daffodils are up, the wattle is blooming and the baby magpies have been kicked out of the nest. They tap on the kitchen window if you're at the sink and eye you off until you give them cheese. Or meat. It must be working because we haven't been swooped in our yard yet.... It's a bit easier now the cat is officially deaf and, we think, a bit blind as well. She can still feel the sun though.

Saturday, August 19, 2017


Well here's a boring picture of my sewing desk today - covered in papers. I am still trying to knock off this essay - and it's only the little one! We have to do a big research paper as well, god knows how that's going to go. I don't find it particularly difficult to do or think about once I get going, but my attention span is so tiny that the main problem is keeping my head down and doing it! I'm sure I used to be able to study all day. Maybe I'm remembering it wrong, maybe I always wandered around doing other stuff and failed to focus in more than ten-minute bursts ... It is agonising. But probably quite good for me.

On a much brighter note, this is what I bought at the craft fair last week. Some beautiful variegated pink merino/mohair blend from New Zealand, and the yellow is recycled sari silk made into yarn! Isn't that cool? It's a beautiful golden yellow and not strong enough for anything other than perhaps a couple of stripes on a weft. But it is sitting in a bag waiting for me ... once I've done some footnoting and stuff. I don't think I'll be doing my masters any time soon.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Flowers in little pots

I have been making flower pot blocks. These are inspired by Freddy and Gwen Collaborate Again - although they use yo-yos for the flowers and I have gone with raw edge appliqué. I don't know why that suddenly decided to inspire me while I was flicking through the quilting books, but it did, and the blocks are rather fun.

The quilt in the book has the flowers in vertical rows, but I quite like the idea of horizontal rows, so they look like they are on a shelf. I will see what to do with them when they're done - of course I didn't think of putting them together horizontally while I was cutting them so they're all different heights, but nothing some random bits of fabric added on can't fix. For now I'm just enjoying cutting different flowers out of bright colours and sewing them together.

I did spend a solid few hours on my uni assignment on the weekend, so I thought I could indulge with some guilt free sewing. As opposed to procrastisewing, which is laden with guilt. In the past weeks I have done procrastibaking, procrasticleaning, procrastiwashing and I even went for a 5km run rather than work on my assignment. This is why I haven't been back to uni for 25 years.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

The food

It's been all about the food this week - even more than a usual week - eating is one of the main pleasures of my life, which is why I am so fat. Oh well. It was my birthday, so we started off with dinner out at a Malaysian restaurant. We were going to go for dessert at a chocolate shop nearby, but it was closed, so we got chocolate from the supermarket and ate it on the sofa. Delicious. And this is the birthday cake my husband made me - fudge from the fudge shop interspersed with chocolate brownie he'd made. Isn't it pretty? And delicious. It took all week to eat.

My work also had afternoon tea for my birthday - I made a lemon drizzle cake because we have SO MANY lemons. And this weekend we went round to friends' last night for dinner and hear about their six weeks in Europe (looked gorgeous, very jealous), and brunch with friends this morning. I think breakfast out is my favourite meal. Bacon.

I went to the Canberra Quilters Exhibition this afternoon which was lovely as always. Lots of very beautiful quilts, and the one that won is stunning. There is definitely a trend towards very elaborate and detailed quilting, which looks fabulous but it's not something that speaks to my heart. Or that I would ever really be interested in doing. But show quilts are always a breed apart. I poked around the vendors and bought some wool for weaving - not that I have been doing much weaving lately. I must find something good to watch on foxtel and then I will no doubt get right back into it...

Thursday, August 10, 2017

The geese that fly

Another finished quilt! I do not know what inspired this, other than an urge to make something simple, in not many colours, and light and bright. It is all flying geese, which are easy to make in bulk. I didn't plan the placement, just put them together in strips that seemed to make sense at the time - some are groups of four, and some are groups of eight, and they go in various directions.

It's quilted with a flower-type swirl that was very swooshy and fun to do.

And the backing fabric even matches! How weird is that, I had it there, enough for a backing, and it is the same colours as the front. The quilt is called "This is all a result of your own life choices" because it usually is.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

A burst water main

It's back to work, and no free time, and dark winter days ... and the most exciting thing that happened this week was a burst water main up on the street. And it wasn't even that exciting because it burst about three feet from the drain and just happily flooded into it. Which is just as well, because if it had gone the other way it would have done some damage to our front garden, and possibly the house, given our feeble our drainage is.

We reported it to the water company, who came in an hour or two and chopped two large gum trees down. Well that was unexpected, we thought to ourselves, you would think they would have asked. We are assuming that the trees weren't on our property (it's quite hard to tell where our property line ends and the nature strip starts). But we still quite liked them - there's a little grove of gums with pretty pink blossoms up on the road. Or there was a little grove, there's only two trees left and I don't think you can call that a grove.

Anyway they chopped the trees up and left them on the front garden of the people across the road, which they probably weren't expecting either. And then a digger came and dug the ground and fixed the water, which was good, and that was the most exciting thing that happened this week! Other than our POSITIVELY LAST trip to Ikea yesterday morning when we bought more that could fit in the car, so had to leave number one son with the overflow boxes and $5 (all the change we could skerrick up) in the cafe by the checkouts for an hour while we went home and came back. We didn't think $5 was much help but he said it was five hot dogs, or ten soft serves, or two cans of cider. So he did quite well.