Monday, October 10, 2011

Baby Violet

On Monday 26 September, at 2am  our family welcomed a beautiful, healthy baby girl, Violet Catriona and she is perfect in every way. Violet weighed 3390gms (7 pounds 7 ounces) and is 51.5cm long. She was born peacefully in water; an absolutely amazing birth for all of us. We are starting to settle in to the rhythm (chaos) of five in the house!!!
Her sisters are thrilled with their baby, particularly given all along they had been calling the baby Violet. Three precious, gorgeous girls – we feel truly grateful!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

birthdays and babies

This modern take on a cathedral window was discovered here - it seemed so easy to me from Christina's instructions - and it was SUPER easy! I made it for the big one recently.

We are still waiting around here for our imminent arrival. But, between a birthday for the now five year old (where did that time go?) and a stay or two in the hospital as well as insanely boring bed rest, I've not been around too much. Breaking the rules little to stop by this space right now but don't know how often I'll be about in the next month or so... We'll see if this little bubba is a sleeper???

Now off to have breakfast with this face and pick up Plod from the airport to fill him in on all the drama fun of the past two weeks while he has been merrily jaunting across the USA!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Finish it up! Friday check in...on Monday again :)

So, it's time to see how that list is looking... And I have to confess, I've not made anywhere near as much progress as I would like - I am always hopeful of time to stitch but I just don't seem to find the time that I dream of.

Anway, the list - here are the items I've progressed:
** Officer Plod's birthday quilt (for the significant birthday he had in February 2010! oops) - only one border to put on then off to the longarm quilter - delivered to quilter. Will need binding on return.
** Australasian Bee - bee blocks - finished one month, two months to complete:
** 1st Wednesday Block Swap - bee blocks - finished one month, two months to complete

** 3x6 Bee - bee blocks for 2nd and 3rd quarter - sent 2nd qtr blocks, 3rd qtr not proceeding - complete
** Binding on quilt for small (given to her unbound for Christmas) - stitched and on her bed again, this time with border - complete
** Red 1930's quilt (for me!!!) - quilt myself then bind - will deliver this to the quilter this week (shocking picture - this is before it was put together with the border)
** Bathmat - cut out, needs to be pieced and quilted - pieced and quilted, binding stitched to front, needs to be stitched to back
** Pillows for two friends birthdays (can't say who, they may be looking) - completed one pillow and found a different gift for the other friend.
** Heather Ross Munki Munki log cabin - finish blocks, piece, to quilter - more blocks assembled, many to go... 
** Baby quilt - to quilter and bind and then actually give to baby - at quilter, to be picked up.

Items still on the waiting list with no progress:
** Civil War repro quilt for my gran (nine-patch) - blocks are made, need to piece together and get to the longarm quilter
** Celebration of significant life event quilt for my Mum (large strip hexies) - cut out, need to piece and then off to quilter
** Birds quilt - piece my blocks received in the 1st Wednesday Block Swap
** Buildings quilt - piece my blocks received in the Australasian Bee
** Scrappy string quilt - finish blocks, piece, to quilter
** Lyrebird embroidery (design by Kate Ward)
** Vintage sheet star quilt (for my bed!!) - piece blocks, to quilter

Friday, July 29, 2011

Fabulous Friday!!!

Seriously. Fabulous. Day.
It started with an overnight low of minus eight and me being grumpy about getting out of bed - have I ever mentioned how much I despise the cold? Combine that with having been awake for most of the night with a small person in our bed having nightmares, I was feeling fairly pessimistic about what the day would bring. Oh, how wrong I was.
My friend Megan gifted us tickets to the ice skating rink set up in the centre of the city. The girls had never been skating before and I was feeling a little hesitant about having to get on the ice with them in my current "condition" - falling on my rear end with a baby in my belly, well... As it turns out, they didn't need me at all. They had SUCH a blast and I was the proudest Mumma ever! What fun. They started out with these cute little penguins for balance and the lovely lady in the shot there was a staff member who helped enormously by showing them how to move their little skates.

After a while using her penguin, the big one was confident enough to wing it on her own and she just took off. I laughed and laughed and they just kept going round and round, up and down that rink.


After skating we went for a hot chocolate and then arrived home to see this beginning:

I have been waiting FOUR years for this and today it came!!! It has taken me four long years to convince Plod that we need lawn. Today, it came. I am such a happy woman. Fabulous morning with my girls and brilliant afternoon with my lawn. I love today :)

And just because I am so excited to have turf, here is some more of it:

The garden has a looooooooooonnnnnnnnnnngggggggg way to go, but hey, I'm happy!

What did your Friday bring?

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Please tell me how it is that eight weeks can feel like such an eternity yet so very little time?

I am feeling like I have forever until I can meet this tiny person growing everyday, whose being is very real to me and whose presence is being felt more and more in this house. I want to meet our new baby, I want to know the answer to he or she? And what they look and feel and smell like. I want her or his daddy and sisters to be able to touch and hold and love this little person.

So why when it comes to "getting ready" am I more than a little anxious? Washing a few beautiful hand knits yesterday made me realise the extent of just how unprepared I am for this bubba. There is no bassinet, no nappy change space, no feeding chair. There are boxes of clothes and blankets still packed away which need to be washed but more than anything, this mumma needs to get her head around having three babies!

And eight weeks is too long to wait yet absolutely no where near enough time! Birth for me is a beautiful, wondrous, miracle and meeting my bubba is exciting and there is a whole lot of love in those first few days and weeks, it is a time of joy and discovery.

I am also aware of the reality of the big adjustments one tiny person forces us to make. We have two smalls who will still require all the love and attention they currently receive and yet there will be one more little person in our family for us to care for and live with and give to. We will, all five of us, need to find a new rhythm. And I am spending a whole lot of time wondering about how this will all work... And at the same time, being so super excited, delighted, impatient about getting closer to meeting and welcoming this amazing new life...

I would love to hear your thoughts - comments are great but if you don't want to publicly share, please email me: relish (at) live (dot) com (dot) au - it could be just the wisdom I need to get me there ;)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Filling the days

We've been on winter school holidays here so not much time for my crafting. We've been filling the days with:

** Small person crafting (remember that tidy sewing space - the floor is now covered in children's acrylic paint):

** Discovering the magical words and worlds of Enid Blyton:

** And, birthday party planning for a soon to be five year old:
I suddenly realised just how big my big girl is when she asked if she could write her birthday lists. She drew boxes to make separate lists for friends, gifts and party plans. And the cake? A rocket flying to Saturn - of course! And I can always bring it back to fabric - I have some of this fabric stashed away so I've taken inspiration from that to draw a cake pattern... I'd really like to make some bunting but that is as far as I can think - any suggestions for space themed decorations, food and party games???

The girls are back at school (albeit only two days per week) and Plod is back to work so I hope to have some time to get on with finishing a few projects - but today, it's a long anticipated and much needed haircut for me - sheer luxury ;) I am going to take the plunge though and try a new hairdresser... He comes highly recommended but I am biting my nails about the visit... I feel like I'm having an affair when I try a new hairdresser and if this one doesn't work I can't go back to the old one because she'll know I cheated on her... Oh the drama of it - wish me luck (or at the very least sharp scissors!)

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Swaps received

I promised you some time ago that I would post pictures of a few items I have received in flickrland swaps. You've already seen the amazing bag I received in the Goodie Bag Swap so here are few more little delights.

The talented Kat sent me this perfect sewing machine cover along with a whole parcel of goodies - I couldn't believe how well she picked my taste - do go over and say hi to her and check out her blog post on this swap here - she is super talented. Kat also included some tea, a whole bunch of fabric scraps, a wristlet pin cushion and a new ruler as well as the most exquisite hand made card. It really was a mail day made in heaven!

I also participated in the Doll Quilt 10 and the My Favourite Mini Quilt Swaps and again, I received perfect parcels with the cutest ever quilts.
 My fave mini:
 And here they are, brightening up a little corner of my room:

Friday, July 1, 2011

I love post like this


Yesterday afternoon I arrived home to a card in my letterbox saying there was a parcel at the post office to collect - I am waiting on a few etsy purchases so I guessed one of these had arrived. I had no idea that the parcel would in fact be SO, SO, SO much better than that.

A while ago I participated in the pretty little pouch swap (organised by Michelle and Kelly - awesome chicas) and I sent off my package to my partner a little early. After much postie stalking, nothing arrived.

Eileen was my angel. And never was a better description given.

This lovely, lovely, lovely pouch arrived yesterday and I am super happy with it - it is perfect. I love those repro prints and the hexies (can you believe she says this is her first hexie project!) and also in the parcel was a gift for my girls - a summer crafts DVD as well as a pattern for a cute little frock I can whip up for them.

While the goodies are adorable and I am very grateful for the cutest pouch, the "extra" I most loved was the note included. It was a heartfelt, sweet and kind note that was so very personal and I am touched beyond words. This generous lady made my day.

I love my pouch and I love this online world of incredible women. What a way to end a day :)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

She's finally home!

I have no idea what to do with her yet but she has arrived. I have always, always, always loved old sewing machines. I bought this one from a deceased estate when I was fifteen. For a very long time now she has been hiding away at my Mum's house and just this week, Mum arranged for her to be delivered to me (thanks Mum). After a good clean and a polish, she's sitting in the entrance next to the piano looking very pretty and making me smile each time I walk by. I don't know if this is her permanent place but for now, I'm just happy having her in the house.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Finish it up! Friday check in...

And what do you know - I'm late!!!

It's my first check-in for Meg's "finish it up" challenge and I'm checking in late. I got motivated last week and tidied the room before tackling any projects. Then I did tick a couple of items off the list including one pillow for a friend, my 3x6 bee blocks and dropping the baby quilt to the quilter but then the weekend happened - and what a weekend it was!

Thursday night, we got to go out for a real grown-ups evening. Our friend, an amazingly talented sculptor, opened a solo exhibition so we went along to check it out. Given we'd gone to the trouble of getting a babysitter and we met up with other friends there, we headed out for an impromptu meal with real conversation. There was no interruption of "Mummy", "Daddy", "I need to go to the toilet", just proper conversation and really, really good food.

On Friday, I had a wonderful day. I got to spend a whole day with my bestest ever friend, just us. We headed off to Sydney for the Craft and Quilt fair and took ourselves over to Calico and Ivy at Balmain. This shop is just stunning and has what must be the entire range of Liberty fabrics. I was in love but restrained myself somewhat and only came home with these:

Saturday found me in the kitchen baking for the cake stall at the school bushdance.
Plod and the smalls heel and toe-d their way across the hall and I managed to avoid exerting myself by selling cakes (and perhaps sampling a few of the offerings) while drinking hot chocolate. 

Sunday we all went to a birthday party for a very special little boy where all the smalls disappeared to the paddock. It was a divine afternoon spent eating too much with great company

Plod had a leave day Monday and we had lots of jobs we "had" to do. So, we ended up taking the girls to school and then sitting on the couch watching a movie together - the list can wait but snuggling on the couch for a movie on a cold day, well it was the perfect end to a perfect weekend!

What did you get up to?

Monday, June 20, 2011

Finish it up!

Well I'm three months today from my due date! The bubba is coming fast and I just know that means not much time for stitching for a while after that. In the spirit of nesting, I decided I needed to finish up a whole load of WIP's sitting on the shelf in the sewing room. And of course, I started my allocated sewing time with procrastination on flickr and browsing around blogland. In my travels, I came across this:
I'm sure there have been entire psychological studies written about people like me who even when setting their own goals, somehow then procrastinate until the last minute to meet a deadline! Well, now I have one. Meg (of Fashioned by Meg) fame is holding a "finish-it-up-a-long". And I've joined her group. Basically, I need to write a list of all my projects and each Friday, I check in with the other members of the group with what I've achieved that week.

The projects are to be those that have already been worked on - patterns and fabric don't count if they've not been cut into. So, taking out those, here is my (rather scary) list:

** Officer Plod's birthday quilt (for the significant birthday he had in February 2010! oops) - only one border to put on then off to the longarm quilter
** Australasian Bee - bee blocks
** 1st Wednesday Block Swap - bee blocks
** 3x6 Bee - bee blocks for 2nd and 3rd quarters
** Binding on quilt for small (given to her unbound for Christmas)
** Civil War repro quilt for my gran (nine-patch) - blocks are made, need to piece together and get to the longarm quilter

** Celebration of significant life event quilt for my Mum (large strip hexies) - cut out, need to piece and then off to quilter
** Red 1930's quilt (for me!!!) - quilt myself then bind
** Birds quilt - piece my blocks received in the 1st Wednesday Block Swap
** Buildings quilt - piece my blocks received in the Australasian Bee
** Bathmat - cut out, needs to be pieced and quilted
** Pillows for two friends birthdays (can't say who, they may be looking)
** Heather Ross Munki Munki log cabin - finish blocks, piece, to quilter

** Scrappy string quilt - finish blocks, piece, to quilter
** Lyrebird embroidery (design by Kate Ward)
** Vintage sheet star quilt (for my bed!!) - piece blocks, to quilter
** Baby quilt - to quilter and bind and then actually give to baby - this month

I'm stopping there - that's EIGHTEEN items. There are more on the shelf but they'll have to wait. Not all of them are going to be completely finished but I would like to make a significant dent in the pile!

Any words of encouragement??? I'll need plenty along the way


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Gorgeous Bags - Received

Insert large squealing sound combined with me jumping up and down around the room and doing an incredibly uncoordinated ahem, graceful happy dance (ok, I'm six months pregnant, at least give me graceful!) and you will have an image of me this morning when the postie came a knockin'. Immediately, I knew this would be good and I was SO right!

I have been stalking this bag over in flickrland for a few weeks now. From the beginning when my partner posted fabric selections through to it's finality, I have had a sneaking suspicion it would be mine - and I am SO thrilled to say I was right!!!

I'm not so great at taking pictures of it but it is a nappy (diaper) bag and has a whole world of pockets inside and out as well as a key chain which is fabulous as I'm always losing keys at the bottom of my bag.

Also in the package was a matching coin purse - I think I'll use this for lipstick being the ever so glamorous Mummy that I am - you know, existing on less sleep than anyone ever thinks is possible and no showering or teeth-brushing before leaving the house an hour late with three children in tow - lipstick will be my first priority ;)

I digress. I am so, so happy with this - the bag is perfect, the pockets are terrific and the quality of the making is just amazing - this is one seriously talented stitcher! You can see a better picture of the bag here.

Thank you, thank you, thank you Christine, this is absolute perfection. It is everything I could have asked for and I can see myself not waiting until the baby is born to use it - I'm just not that patient!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Gorgeous Bags

Here I am again, I found myself in another swap over on flickr! I seem to hit the accept button before I actually think...

This time, it's the Goodie Bag Swap. Essentially, make a gorgeous bag, include a small ziplock full of fabric scraps, send to secret partner and wait for the mailman...

Please, please, please dear postie, come knocking soon...

NB: Although the only required "extra" were a few fabric scraps, I couldn't resist making my partner a small coordinating pouch. The bag is Meadow by Melly and Me and the pouch is the inset zip pouch by Keyka Lou. Do check out Melly and Me for fabulous patterns - these girls are Aussie designers and they have amazing stuff here.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

New artworks

I love the creativity of my children. The reckless abandon with which they just get into something. There's no big sit down sketching a plan, thinking about colours for hours, they just get into it and make it up as they go along. How I envy their ability to produce something so beautiful in a matter of minutes and their confidence that whatever they do, it will be perfect just as it is.

Today, we participated in a workshop for preschoolers held at our local museum and art gallery. The smalls examined objects from the past 100 years and then dreamed up unusual places to find those objects. Above is the result of active imaginations, painted in watercolours on canvas. Of course, we had to come home and hang them in the girls very own gallery - I think their bedroom wall is the perfect backdrop!

Left: An 80's white high-heel and an old wooden peg on a "flaming Jupiter wtih all it's colourful gas rings". (Mollie, 4)

Right: "A cricket ball in a storming jungle". (Lulu, 3)

The lesson: stop thinking and start doing!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Doll Quilt Swap 10

I was super thrilled to be able to participate in the Doll Quilt Swap this round. Getting a place in this is a bit like a lottery - you have to enter and then have your name drawn... I can't believe this was my first time entering, and I was in - call it beginner's luck :)

This is the front of the quilt I made for my partner. Her flickr favourites included some bright happy quilts and all were in more traditional layouts - using blocks rather than applique so I went for a free-hand cut log cabin (I couldn't be too precise and traditional, I just couldn't).

She also mentioned that red was her favourite colour. So I made it double sided - a red quilt on the reverse:
I can't wait 'til Mr Postie brings me a little delight... Will share with you when he does...

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Pretty {little} Pouches

This is a swap I am both excited and VERY nervous about...

I love the swap (I have FAR too many items kicking around my handbag that could be better organised) and am really happy with how the project turned out... but... the person I am making this for is one talented chica. I've got some of her work here and I know how lovely it is so... making a gift for her is rather daunting...

My partner mentioned a few fabrics and designers but I've gone Australian with Saffron Craig. I absolutely love Saffron's fabrics - the colours she uses, the quality of the cotton and that fact that she is an Australian designer achieving fabulous results.

I'll have to reveal what's under the linen on the purple side when this is received... Don't want to give away who it is for...  What do you think???

Saturday, May 7, 2011

MMM - Make Mine Modern

While I've been away, I've been crafting a whole lot so I'm going to spend a few days sharing delights - some made and some received.

Today is the package I made for my partner in the Make Mine Modern swap over on flickr. A sewing machine cover, tea cosy and a whole bundle of fabric scraps...

I loved making this as I got use up scraps and work with lots of different fabrics... Disappointingly, my partner never received her parcel due to customs in Denmark but I am working on getting it to her - hopefully it will come home so I can resend...