Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A Little Here, A Little There

A little sewing here and a little sewing there, slowly but surely it adds up. Another pile of blocks for my Musical Stairs quilt, still growing and waiting for ironing and trimming. I really like Tula Pink's latest range of fabric, Acacia, and have included several Acacia blocks. About another dozen blocks to go and then I'll start piecing them together......

Here's the newest butterfly too. It's about half the size of the first two I made and happily lives in our kitchen for me to enjoy every day!

For those who have been asking - Miss E is enjoying her time in the big city, dreaming of new beginnings for next year. She is due back Sunday night. Master J is also firming up dreams and plans for the years ahead, he now has just one last exam to sit to complete his school years. It has been a rather amazing week with glimpses of exciting times ahead!

Sharing at WIP Wednesday.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Dreaming and Praying

Dreaming is a form of praying and praying is a form of dreaming.
                      Catherine Marshall

The day we stop dreaming is the day we start dying. 
If your dreams don't scare you they're not big enough.

Get a God-sized dream, birthed in prayer.

God is infinitely bigger than your biggest problem or prayers.

Just a few thoughts from today's message at church.

Very early this morning Miss E left for a few days in the big city far away to spy out the land and dream big dreams.

I'm planning to work on my dreaming and praying from this day on......

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Used and Treasured

You know how some stories and memories become even more endearing over time? I believe this is the case with many quilts too.

No, this isn't a quilt I've just secretly whipped up, but one which is two years old now. Some of my early readers may remember me sharing this story back in 2011. Here's the shortened and updated version.

Six months after teaching myself to quilt I bravely ordered some fabric from the US - oh the wonderful range of fabrics to choose from and prices less than half what we have to pay "Down Under" in Australia. As soon as I saw the American Retro blue floral I thought of my Mother-in-Love. After much searching of the internet I settled on the Ohio Star block, fussy cutting the centres to make the most of the print. I ordered more fabric - enough for the back in the lovely blue print and a little in both of the other colours available.

I stippled the bulk of the quilt, hand quilted the interior of each block and machine stitched the outer border in widely spaced diagonals.

I made a card to match and unexpectedly gifted it to her on Father's Day 2011 (the first Sunday in September in Australia). I couldn't bear to keep it hidden away when she could be enjoying it!

Don't you love it when a handmade gift is used and treasured. For a while it seemed she hardly used this quilt except to show it to others. I was delighted to find that it is one of the few things she chose to bring with her in her move to the local aged care facility this year. It lays proudly on her bed. In fact, the staff often make her bed and spread the quilt back side upper on her bed for the backing is so beautiful and bright.

 This quilt, along with the Scrapbooks and photo books I have made for her over the years (and my late Father-in-Love) are some of her most treasured possessions - which blesses me so much.

Sharing at the Blogger's Quilt Festival: Bed Quilts.

Friday, October 25, 2013

The Little Things

Thank you so much for all who empathised and make suggestions regarding my frustrations in my previous post - and a special thank you for those who took the time to visit my flickr photos. The little things can make all the difference to our days whether they are points of frustration, or encouragement and help. For now I'll just continue posting as usual, using only photos which don't seem to be altered/distorted by the "enhancement".

This afternoon I took Miss E to the cricket nets to join her older siblings at the end of their practice session. It didn't take much of my time but it's something which she has wanted to do for a long, long time, something little which made a big difference to her day.

It's that time of year again when the hundreds, maybe even thousands, of jacaranda trees in our town are in full bloom. It sure is a wonderful sight to see, especially along those streets which are lined with them.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Shades of (Pink) Frustration

I've recently had difficulty uploading photos accurately to my blog and upon investigation it appears that Blogger has recently added a default auto enhance feature which can only be corrected/disabled once you have joined Google+. At this stage I have no intentions of joining Google +, nor can I tolerate the editing which it applies to some of my photos.

This is rather frustrating as I don't know which photos will look awful with google's auto enhance until they are actually uploaded. Today this has happened again, so I'm trying to work around it by using my Flickr account. This may sound crazy to some, but I treasure my photos.....

I was wanting to share with you photos of a beautiful poppy - but I can't do it here. Yes, you can enjoy the pink cornflower (indeed I had a variety of lovely pinks to share) but the photos I really wanted to share won't load correctly on blogger so I have uploaded them to my flickr page here for your pleasure - and mine.....

Do many of you use flickr? I love it as a way to keep interesting quilting/craft ideas and inspirational photos together in one place. I'm thinking I may be sharing more at flickr over the coming days.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Little Critters

 Superb Blue Wren (male)

Juvenile male Scarlet Honeyeater

Mature Scarlet Honeyeater (a second one in the background)

Just a few of the smaller critters which have frequented our garden over the last few days.....much nicer than anything I could possibly create with my own hands.

Sharing at Wild Bird Wednesday, Aussie WW.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

A Compass

God doesn't give us a map, He gives us a compass. 
Our next step is the most important, following our compass directed His spirit. 
We are not tourists in this life, we are explorers.

Thoughts from today's message by the lovely "L" who spoke while our pastor was sharing elsewhere.
Another ladybug enjoying our cornflowers. I affectionately call this variety Tiger Ladybugs.

Friday, October 18, 2013

A New "Creative Something"

 While searching yesterday for that new "creative something" to try I came across a wonderful site on Etsy - Blue Terracotta by Laura. At once I loved her butterflies and decided to have a go at making one, working it out as I went. The smaller aqua-white butterfly was the result. 

Then last night I discovered Laura had a website which includes a tutorial for making her butterflies. My method and materials are a little different but follow a similar basic process. 

Today I bought some iron-on interfacing (to give more body to the wings while using quilting weight fabrics) and made the larger purple-green butterfly with a wingspan of 5"/12.5cm. The possibilities are endless for recreating life-like butterflies or being as creative and fanciful as you like. I can't wait to make another one, maybe a little smaller this time.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013


"It is always exciting to open the door and go out into the garden 
for the first time on any day."
                                                 Marion Cran

Although only a small section of garden (one neighbour's leafy trees and another's house can be seen in the background above), it gives me great joy, several times every day! I love watching the sun dapple the poppies, cornflowers and other little jewels in this circle.

 Each day there are fresh wonders. The poppy above makes me think of frosted cupcakes.

This is the only poppy with three inner and outer petals, all the others (even on the same plant) have only two.

I can pretend there is a whole field of wildflowers growing out my back door and enjoy every little flower and insect which live in these few square metres.....that which started as a couple of packets of seeds amongst some struggling plants now brings such joy to my soul.

Sharing at Weekend Flowers - Macro.

Monday, October 14, 2013

I Came, I Saw, I Conquered

Whatever your day brings, may it be a good one!

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