Thursday, October 29, 2009

my place and yours - bedside

This week's theme in the Meet Me at Mikes meme is 'Bedside'. 
Thanks pottymouthmama for this week's theme.  Make sure you check out some of the other favourite besides out there!

My bedside consists of a little posy of flowers picked from my garden, two books - 'The Creative Family' by  Amanda Blake Soule, which lives permanently on my bedside table and 'Our Mutual Friend' by Charles Dickens which has been sitting on my bedside table for longer than I care to admit, waiting for me to start reading it.  The problem is whenever I have a spare few minutes crafting or blogging wins handsdown every time! 

I also have a very daggy but functional digital alarm clock set to wake me at 7:29am each day just in time for the 7:30 news and weather report on 2CH (golden oldies station for those not in the know).  Yes you read right - I have tuned in to this station for roughly the last decade!  Not ALL the time mind you.  I listen to a variety of other stations during the day but there is nothing like waking up to the sultry sounds of Frank Sinatra or the like I say :)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

little patchwork, big patchwork

I spent the best part of ALL of yesterday making this patchwork quilt.  Made entirely from vintage bed linen I've had in my stash for quite awhile.  Unfortunatey the overcast conditions do not make for good picture taking and these photo's just don't do the fabrics any justice.

I had originally planned to make a quilt out of 6 inch squares but really wanted a nice 'quick' project (as opposed to the saga of Miss B's quilt which has been going for at least 6 months now).  I remembered seeing Amanda's Beach Blanket to go on her blog so loosely based my version on hers.

I have not yet bought Handmade Home (it's on my wishlist) so just made up my own dimensions. 
The quilt measures 60" x 60", made up of 15 rectangles measuring 12' x 20" each.  It is backed with a vintage bedsheet I couldn't bear to cut up and the binding, made by moi using a 1" bias tape maker,  is also made from an old bedsheet.  This was the first time I have made bias binding this way and I am a total convert!  There is no batting between the layers.  I got my walking foot out for the first time in about 5 years and simply stitched in the ditch just to hold it all together.  I even just zigzaged the binding on to save time. 

See the lovely backing!

Here's Miss A having her first sewing lesson.  Helping me out with the quilt.   I started at about 10 o'clock in the morning and finished it just after midnight.  I was determined to make the whole thing in a day!

I also did a little sewing on Saturday arvo, making this cute little belt for Miss B in about half an hour.  From the pattern Belt it Out in Pretty Little Patchwork I adjusted the measurements to suit a 1" D-ring.  Miss B chose all the fabrics herself from my stash and she has hardly had it off since I finished it!

Last but not least a lovely flash of colour on these rather drab, rainy days we've been having here in Sydney.  How I do love my lovely little sweetpeas...............

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Perfect mini muffins

I've made these twice this week.  First time round I added  fresh blueberries and yesterday made a saltana batch.  They take literally five minutes to make and about 10 minutes to cook, they are allergy friendly and to top it all off they are sooo easy to make which makes it a breeze with four little extra hands pitching in.

Mini Muffins

Pre-heat oven to 200Celsius.  Mix together 1 cup SR flour, 3 tablespoons of sugar and 2 teaspoons of baking powder.  Add 1/2 cup (soy) milk, 1/4 cup oil and 1 egg (or No Egg equivalent) and combine well.  Add 1/2 cup of fruit of your choice and stir through.
Spoon mixture into a greased or patty pan lined mini-muffin tin and bake for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. 

Mmmmm.... delish eaten warm from the oven.

By the way, did you see my entry in CurlyPops giveaway comp.??

I couldn't resist entering this giveaway over at Don't Look Now, I am so in love with the How Does Your Garden Grow pillow - sigh........

and this giveaway that Allison over at The Lark is having is in support of the Breast Cancer Network of Australia.  As well as a prize for the winner she is donating 50 cents to BCNA for every person who enters, so head on over and do some good!

This flower just bloomed in my garden.  Left behind by the previous owner (in pots all over the back yard).  It is such an ugly plant but I thought there must be something about it for her to have had so many of them.  I kept one just to see.  This is the first time it has bloomed.  Wow it is STUNning!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

My Place and Yours - On The Shelf

I am not usually one for joining meme's but this one hosted by Pip really took my fancy.  I looove this 'shelf' at my place.  A mantel piece is something I've always wanted to have in my house.  We had one in the house I grew up in and I just love them, I even love the name - mantel piece!

At the moment my favourite 'shelf' holds a number of things very dear to me.  A bunch of 'get well' cards from loved ones wishing Miss A all the best.  And from left to right - a beautiful green and blue Art Nouveau tile I bought from an antique shop in Newtown many years ago, a portrait of my mum taken in the sixties, my new jug/vase from Ikea filled with freshly picked from our garden lavender and the last of my ranuncula's, an art deco mirror (above mantel) also bought many year's ago from an antique shop in Darlinghurst (my love of vintage started at an early age!) and two pictures of my beloved daughter's in lovely shiny silver/mirror frames. 

And yes that is me reflected in the mirror - quite intentionally thank you very much!

SuperPops to the rescue

Courtesy of CurlyPops, an hour spent creating our very own version of SuperPops out of Playdough!!  Keeping Miss A occupied during her post-op recovery is proving to be quite a challenge, so I seized the opportunity to get Miss A (and Miss B) involved in this creative SuperPops Challenge

Who could pass up the opportunity to create your very own Super Hero, winning would just be an added bonus.  We had alot of fun, until the girls lost interest and I was left with a kitchen covered in Playdough to clean up.....  They were also very excited to see their very own SuperPops on our computer :) 

I have also discovered that explaining how a competition works to a five year old and the fact you may not win is rather difficult!!  She now thinks the prize is a SuperPops doll.............

Friday, October 16, 2009

Welcoming Alexander to the flock (pun intended!!)

Miss A is recovering admirably, taking the whole operation/recovery thing in her stride.  But with news from her post-operation check-up that her arm will be in a sling to prevent ANY movement for at least another four weeks we are all feeling the boredom and frustration kicking in. 

So a family trip to Birdsville was in order!

I made a customised birdcage skirt and cover to make Alexander O'Bird more comfortable......

We've also spent some time on a crafty project inspired by retromummy which kept the girls occupied for the afternoon.  The best part is I used up some of the scrapbooking paper I had stashed away and Miss A got to use the fantastic craft scissors (you know the ones that make all different pretty edgings) given to her as a get well present by her Nanna and Pappa.

And a little project using the lovely lace and dye I bought at the Stitches and Craft Show that has been waiting in the wings (I just can't help it).

I really love how these singlets turned out! So, so pretty and summery.  Bring on the warmer weather I say :)

Friday, October 9, 2009

Distractions, distractions........

Edited to add photo's!!
So it's been just over a week since my last post, but what a hell of a week it was. 

My eldest daughter spent five nights in Westmead Children's Hospital here in Sydney after having an operation on Friday.  Although it was a big operation, she has astounded and amazed me with her strength, resilience and the remarkable speed at which she is bouncing back.  We came home yesterday and she has had my heart in my mouth ever since (five year olds know no bounds) trying to do things I think she should not yet be attempting!

On the morning of the big op. I was pacing the living room floor, waiting until it was time to leave for the hospital, when I heard the postman's motorcycle go by.  So for something to do I went and checked the letterbox!!  I was most pleasantly surprised to find these wonderful sewing cards from the very lovely and generous Cass of Snailblazer had been delivered to me.  Wrapped in sewing pattern paper (what a great recycle) and with a little something extra for me thrown in!  I really wish I could show them to you now.......I can't wait to give them to my lovely little sweetpeas at Christmas.

A little while later the door bell rang, it was a delivery guy with a big box of craft goodies I'd ordered just the day before from here.  Some stuff for me and my girls and some stuff for my Playgroup.   Talk about good timing, we needed all the distractions we could get that morning.  Miss A and I spent some time looking at all the goodies and got stuck straight into using some too.


The girls and I made these fridge magnets last week and spent  Friday morning adding the magnets to the back after the delivery from CleverPatch

During the long wait while the op. was taking place, and the following days spent on the ward I whiled away the hours with a little crochet.  I think I'm now up to about 70 squares.  As each is only 9cm x 9cm I think I'm going to need about ohhh..... 360 of them! 

Lucky I'm still really enjoying the process.