Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

I'd like to wish everyone a very merry christmas. I hope everyone has a fabulous day filled with friends, family, food and lots of lovely goodies under the tree. In the new year I'm sure there will be lots of new quilting projects, and l look forward to seeing what everyone is up to.
I'm going away tomorrow, so there probably won't be much going on here for the next week.
All the best,

Monday, December 22, 2008

Three days to go...

Is anyone else mildly freaked out that Christmas in only three days away? At least the weather is finally looking more like summer than winter (34 here today!).

I handed in my thesis today; thats one less thing to worry about. Plus I finished quilting Wallflower...just have the binding to go.

And I had some new jelly rolls arrive in the post. The Fat Quarter Shop has been having a fantastic Christmas sale, with 50% off different selected items each day, and I managed to snag the two jellies for $15 each!


American Primer:

And Miss Rosie's 4OT quilt pattern which I plan to make next year (among a million other things!)

Now, I recently added a visitor counter to my blog, and I know I'm getting up to 40 hits a day, but very few comments. So to all you lurkers out there, please say hello; I like to know who is visiting here so that I can in turn visit your blog. Plus I'm just greedy, I like getting lots of comments, it makes me feel loved!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Counting Down...

I can't belive it's only four days till Christmas! This year sure has flown by. And the last few weeks have been pretty crazy, though I've managed to get a lot done!

I've been out for dinner most nights during the last week, trying to catch up with friends and family before Christmas. Some of my family have already left on their summer holiday, so we had an early Christmas dinner, for which I made this divine Pav! It cracked a little under the cream, but it tasted fab.

Today my Mum and I went to the Yarra Valley farmers market at Yering Station Winery. They specialise in preserves, pastas, and fresh fruit and veg. It's only a small market, but very popular! I also caught up with my sister for a coffee as she happens to work at the winery (very handy!).

I baked our Christmas cakes today, though they are actually just boiled fruit cakes, but just as tasty. I doubled the recipe, and made one for mum and myself, and one for my grandmother, as she doesnt cook much these days. I like to think I inherited my love of cooking from both women. My grandma used to mind me before and after school when I was younger, and we were always baking!

This week the peaches on my tree finally started to ripen, and of course the birds started to help themselves. The tree was only planted last year, and had to many fruit that it started to lean to the point where I've had to tie the branches to the fence to support the weight. I made a yummy white peach crumble with some of the fruit tonight.

Wallflower is almost quilted, just have the borders to go. I don't think I've ever got a quilt of this size quilted so quickly before! I've also put the binding onto B's baby quilt. My plan is to have the binding machined onto both quilts before Christmas, and I'll take them on holiday with me to stitch down on a quiet and lazy evening.

Some of you might remember that I finished my PhD a few months ago... for the last month I've been doing the revisions for my thesis, and I'm handing that in again tomorrow. Its gone from 250 pages to about 275! Tomorrow will see me printing off a couple of copies, having them bound up, and handing them in. I'm looking forward to having that out of the way before Christmas. I'm also excited as I've finally lined up a proper job (I've been working casually for the last few months), so I'll be making the most of three weeks off (and one week away in the country).

Bought some cute fish to hang on the tree; they are glass with tinsel in the centre. We got one pink and one blue (you can just see the eyes of the blue fish on the left).

Last, but certainly not least...Bella. It's been such a long day, that she curled up asleep in the hand-washing tub on the couch! And being a white cat in a white bowl, she is very hard to take a good photo of! She seems to like sleeping in things...

Sunday, December 14, 2008


Now that I've finished all my crafty Christmas projects, I can finally work on more selfish projects. While I've started putting together the sheep baby quilt for C, I've been itching to start quilting Wallflower, and I finally got there today (or tonight...).

The quilt is mostly stippled, so I don't imagine its going to take too long, however I'm a very restless person, and I can't sit still for long. I usually quilt a section, then get up and wander around, the come back and do a bit more. I do the same when I'm watching TV; as soon as there is an ad, I'm off and wandering. The only problem with doing this while I'm quilting, is that Bella very soon makes herself at home in the most inconvenient spot.

I've managed to get a decent amount done tonight, and I'm pleased with how it's looking. I'm just using a light cream coloured thread for most of it, but I might go for an olive to quilt in the leaves.

I've shown quite a few photos of Bella over the past few months, but I've never really gone into detail about her. I adopted Bella from the RSPCA almost three years ago, after my old cat died of cancer. The thing about Bella which makes her a bit special is that she is deaf, which is very common in white cats. However, the blue-eyed part is a myth; many white cats with blue eyes have perfectly good hearing, while Bella has green-yellow eyes. No one is entirely sure why being white causes deafness.

Because she is deaf, she is an indoor cat, as she can't hear things like cars or dogs. She is also an incredibly affectionate cat, and gets very upset if she is left alone. If she doesn't know where you are in the house, she howls loudly until she finds you. She can be so loud that I've had neighbours come to the door to see what the noise it. She also has different noises for different occasions; a sad howl when she can't find you, an excited meow when she is about to be fed, and a funny sound we call her "moth noise" when she spots a moth or fly in the house (which she usually catches). To get her to come to you, you wiggle your fingers, or tap on the furniture and she comes running. And if you ignore her for too long, she hops up on her back legs and taps you till you pick her up.

For some reason, she also likes to sleep in lots of funny places; shopping bags, cardboard boxes, a casserole dish I've got stashed away under my bed, and even in the lining of the couch. She also loves umbrellas!

Friday, December 12, 2008

More progress

It's been one of those days where I've managed to get a lot done. I'm having people over tomorrow for a Christmas get-together, so I've cleaned the house from top to bottom. I also put up the Christmas tree, finally. However, we have to put the tree in the bathroom every night to stop the cat crash-tackling it. As you can see, she likes to hang out near it, waiting for my back to be turned for just a second.

I've finished Dilbert.

I've basted the Wallflower quilt (it's been hanging on the clothes horse for a couple of weeks just waiting...)

B's baby quilt is all quilted, I just need to buy some fabric for the binding (ok, so I finished this about a week or so ago, but haven't shown it yet).

I've made the little goody boxes for friends at work.

I've wrapped up a few presents, and tucked them away to stop Miss Bella ripping them open...

And somehow I've managed to cause an error with my Mum's SLR camera while taking photos of barnacles...hopefully its nothing serious :-\

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Another present finished!

After a bit of fiddling around yesterday with different combinations of fabric, I finally whipped up a cushion cover as a Christmas gift. I used 9 Swell charm squares, with a small white border to make it the appropriate size.

For the backing I used fabric left over from the back of the Crabapple quilt as a bit of a contrast.

I'm pretty pleased with it; it's only the second cover I've ever made and fits more snugly than the one I made a few years ago. Just hope the recipient likes it; otherwise I'm more than happy to keep it!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Tablerunner 2

A couple of days later than I planned, but those tablerunners are just about done. One is completely finished, the other needs the binding stitched down on the back. But anyway, I did solve the problem of the sashing disappearing under the binding, and I'm pleased with how they look.

I've also almost finished Dilbet; he just needs eyes and spots, and he's done.

Bella is always close by to keep an eye on things. Never mind the fact I made her a quilted mat to sleep on (the red at the back of the photo), she seems to like the sewing machine cover better...

Gradually getting through my to-do list. Still need to put a label on my Crabapple quilt; that bit always takes me ages. Also need to work out a christmas present to make for my sister (I've got some ideas brewing), then shop for the rest, including all the girls at work. Only two and a bit weeks to go!!!

Monday, December 1, 2008


Oops...blogger had a hissy fit and posted twice. Not deleting due to the comment, but for the actual post, head down to the post below.


It's oficially the first day of summer today! The weather has been a bit on and off the last few weeks, but today seems to be ok; warm without being hot.

The fabric for my tablerunner backing only arrived today, so I haven't got them finished yet, sorry. Hopefully in a few days if I've had a bit of time at home. However, I haven't been completely slack! I've been working on a Dilbert for a 3 year old boy I know, who will be getting it for Christmas. I've got all the spikes done too, just need to sew the body together, then finish off...

I've also picked up another Liberty fabric that I need for the Pappilion quilt. I don't plan on making this quilt anytime soon, but I'd like to have all the fabrics for when I do. One more to go!

And I bought a Portobello Market fat 1/4 bundle. My sister turns 21 next year, and I'm already planning on what quilt to make for her. I've chosen the 4OT pattern from Miss Rosie's Quilt Co. (Bad photo sorry, all the fat 1/4s are loose in a box).

The lovely weather we've been having has bought a few new visitors to my garden. We have a family of Magpies in the street which like to come to the front door for a feed. One in particular is quite happy to take food from my hand, so it gets more than all the others....

Also, out Feijoa tree is covered in flowers, which is feeding about 6 gorgeous parrots.