Friday, April 29, 2016

Thank You Miss E

Tuesday evening, just on dusk, a surprise visitor walked in our back door! Our eldest daughter, Miss E, had travelled all day by train from Sydney, then walked from the train station to surprise all of us!!! She only has a one week mid-semester break in her studies and her work load had been looking ominous. We had all accepted the fact that it really wasn't practical for a trip home, although there had been a few tears shed by our youngest, eight year old Miss E. These things happen. Then on Sunday night there was a change in circumstances, but none of us except eldest Miss E knew.....

Wednesday and Thursday were precious as we soaked up Miss E's wonderful presence in a flurry of hugs, conversations, movie watching (at home), kitchen treats cooked by Miss E etc. We squeezed in a visit to our favourite local park too. 

Then this morning the inevitable happened - we had to say our goodbyes. Almost 16 years separate our two Miss Es, the first and last of our eight children - they have a very special bond. There were tears at the train station, just after the last two photos, yet we have so much to be grateful for. We won't see her again until September as her five week, midyear break will be spent in Europe - part study, part touring, all very exciting. Thank you Miss E for being you - and being with us.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Appreciating Afresh

Our riverside town has many visual gems which I took a few minutes to appreciate afresh this week.  The huge Moreton Bay Fig is a majestic old tree, right in town. We have so many wonderful mature trees lining our streets, one of the joys of living in an older town. The very mild autumn mornings have been perfect for camera detours on the way home from driving my husband at work, especially combined with the more relaxed days of school holidays. 

It is quite a privilege to make my husband's lunch early each morning and drive him to work, especially after the last two years when he was not well enough to work. We celebrated our 26th wedding anniversary this week by going out for lunch, just the two of us, something we very rarely do, yet hope to do again soon. :)

My organic Etsy shop quilts make a beautiful stack as they wait for new homes. They are usually safely stored away in a cupboard along with two more. Very grateful for the sales I've had already.

Today I completed the last of the extra hand quilting on my Set Free quilt. It was soon in the washing machine then hung out to dry in the autumn breeze. This one is a keeper, I love the beautiful blue and white prints and the timeless design.

Sharing at Skywatch Friday.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Autumn - At Last

Aussie Landscape quilt and Butterfly Kisses air drying in our bright sunshine

Maze and Vale sample pack and left overs

Spin Spin Fabric Sample Pack

As our long, long summer slowly comes to a close we are breathing a sigh of relief, and looking forward to time in the garden being enjoyable again.

Our new Camellia Sasanquas, Paradise Vanessa, have begun to flower with pretty touches of bright pink around the edges of their petals. The hardy native everlasting/paper/straw daisies delight me with their daily opening and closing, growing larger with each day. The children have helped me with some well overdue garden maintenance too.

With cooler days, it's been time to wash quilts ready for use and hand quilting is once more a pleasant task. My blue and white Set Free quilt has been 'finished' for several months, however I've decided it needs some extra quilting to secure it well before I can confidently trust it to the washing machine! Looking forward to being able to wash it, ready for use, in another week or two.

I've been contemplating using a mix of natural/neutral organic cottons, hemp and linen, all hand printed in Australia, for a new project. Several possibilities in my mind, yet no urgency - just enjoying their pleasant earthy hues, clean smell and wonderful textures.

Last week also marked a family milestone with my husband successfully completing a gradual return to work, finishing his first full time work week in over two years! The balance of his health is still delicate but things are looking very hopeful.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Rain Walk Quilt

As much as I enjoy the pleasures of a slow, hand stitched project, sometimes I just want to sew something where the finish isn't too distanced from the beginning. Over the last few weeks this quilt has been the focus of available blocks of time. 

Starting with a few fat quarters of Anna Graham's Rain Walk collection and one of Pebbles in Turquoise from Landscape, my ideas gradually worked their way into a nice size quilt (40" x 60"). All of these fabrics, as well as the Cirrus solids (Amber, Sprout, Grass, Lagoon, Ocean and Shadow), are by Cloud 9 Fabrics - all are GOTS certified organic cotton.

The colours are not my usual palette choice, but as my husband commented a few times, they go really well together. The back is the Cirrus solid, Amber, and it teams beautifully with the navy (Ocean) blue binding. A row of fabrics from the quilt top make a nice little feature strip on the back. Machine quilted with organic 'straight' lines, the effect is in keeping with the water theme of the quilt, as if the raindrops have left trails in their wake.

Yesterday I completed hand stitching the binding, washed the brand new quilt and hung it outside gently to air dry. I love the rippled effect the quilting gives which is even more pronounced after washing.

We had fun at a local park taking photos this morning - with my plans interrupted by a large water dragon lizard sunning itself, so we relocated down stream a little to a spot which was even better.  :)  Now listed in my Etsy shop, awaiting a new home.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Wilsons Headland Walk


Wilsons Headland is another local gem which we had never visited before! Situated between Minnie Water and Wooli on the NSW Mid North Coast, it is relatively remote from large towns. Visiting on a school/work day meant there were very few other people out enjoying this beautiful area. Miss N alerted us to this location as she has spend many days weeding and planting in this section of Yuraygir National Park as part of her current environmental work position. I would love to return soon, yet there are still many other nearby areas which we are yet to explore. Maybe we should make a habit of this as the weather cools down, and it tied in very well with our recent science studies of rocks!

Sharing at SkyWatch Friday.

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