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I am a mother of eight and grandmother of four who loves to make and create. Rosemary Hill is the name of our home where we live, work, learn and create together

Friday 29 February 2008

The "February 29" Post

I just had to take advantage of the wonderful opportunity today presents. It's a once in four years chance! No, I didn't propose to some guy today, I'm just doing a February 29 post. I received an email from a friend today and the photo below was attatched. She went out and her kids (of the teenaged variety) made her an indoors autumn. Now, some of you might have been appalled to come home and be greeted by fallen leaves in your kitchen, but she was thrilled. Autumn is her favourite season, and walking through fallen leaves one of her favourite things.

Their dog looks as though she's not sure what to make of it all. I think it's a testament to my friend's mothering that her kids knew just what to do to make her happy! I hope I come home one day to a kitchen full of leaves. (Metaphorically speaking. And just incase any of my kids are reading this, that means that I would like you to do something for me that I would love, not that I would like you to put leaves in my kitchen!!! I think I prefer my outside outside and my inside inside. I think!) I hope your February 29 was as good as this was for my friend!

Thursday 28 February 2008

Found Objects

This week has been a frustrating one blogwise. I really enjoyed all the frequent posting I did with the "30 Days of the Everyday". I kind of got into a rhythm and enjoyed looking at a lot more new blogs too. I decided that I would try and blog more often to re-capture that rhythm. But so far, I haven't been able to get a post to stick! It's not bloggers fault. Mr 19 got very excited this month and used all our allowed downloads up 1 week before the end of our month. Hence the internet has been super slow and my computer gets sick of waiting and just gives up! (You'd never believe that we recently doubled our download allowance!)

Mr 7 and Miss 11 have been collecting things whilst out this week. They loved them so much, or considered them to be so special they photographed them too. The spotty feather was collected by Mr 7.

Miss 11 was responsible for finding the pinecone. This week we went to a friend's house for a knitting day and I have started some blocks for Quilts4Leukemia. That's about it on the crafting front. I have lots of photos. I'll post them soon.

Friday 22 February 2008

Does buying fabric count?

Such great and marvellous plans for this week! If only I had consulted my calender, or my children! We had a doctor visit, a hospital visit and a dental visit this week along with numerous trips to the chemist. It all takes time. However, I did manage to squeeze a fabric shop (DK Fabrics) visit in amongst it all. Miss 21 (overseas) needs a light coloured jacket so I bought some green fabric to produce just that. I don't have a pattern to show you because I just copied one of her favourite jackets. I have made this jacket up before, but didn't photograph it before I posted it to her.

Mr 19 (our ebayaholic) has been searching ebay looking for zoot suit patterns. He found this pattern in the USA and it's his size! This was not in an effort to get me to make him a suit, he sews too and is looking forward to the challenge this suit presents. He chose a pin stipe and a diamond patterned lining.

This is what I have spent my time working on this week. My Bradley made bookshelves for me last year. I painted them quickly and put all of our books on them. As you can see above and below, they didn't fit very well. This was a very sad situation because we are reading people and we couldn't get to our books easily.

So, after months of wondering "how did that happen?" and "what will I do?" I came to the conclusion that if we couldn't use the books properly there was no point in having them and I should cull our collection to those we really love. (Well, it didn't really take me that long to work it out, but I was slow to put the plan into action because I thought it would be difficult to cull our books. It hasn't been as hard as I thought!)

The shelves now look like this (above and below). This isn't the finished product yet, but at least you can get to all the books. I am quite fussy when I've decided to actually do something, it's just the deciding that holds me back! (I am the woman her keeps her dvds alphabetized afterall - it's so much easier to find what you're looking for!)

Some of the books will be kept behind closed doors. This is in an effort to combat dust and to keep the library looking better. I really love these cupboards because they were built to my specifications. It's excellent having a handyman live at your house! I have so many projects and designs for him in my head I think it would take him a couple of years to build them all if he could work fulltime on the jobs. Of course, he can't because we like to eat and feel more comfortable when our bills are paid. (I have to keep reminding myself of this!)

These are the piles I have assembled so far to go! Not sure what we will do with them. A friend suggested we see if a secondhand bookshop is interested in buying them. And there's always the Salvos! Mr 19 thinks we should give some of them a go on ebay (naturally!!!). Now that I'm in such a clearing out frame of mind I think I might tackle the fabric stash next! (If I get rid of any of that it will be a miracle!)

Monday 18 February 2008

The Engagement Quilt

I showed you bits and pieces of this quilt top last year, and here it is again! Mrs 23 (Picklesticks) organized this for my niece's engagement party as a memento of the evening. We encouraged everyone to draw or write a message to the happy couple. This was something we did for Mrs 23 and she loved it so much she wanted her cousin to have one too. Of course, Mrs 23 then fell pregnant (a good thing!) and had 24 hour sickness (not so good! It's kind of insulting to call it morning sickness when it lasts all day and night!) and still is not feeling the best. So, I started to put this together last year and then put it in a safe place (you know that, right?) where I unearthed it from last week. I think I need to finish it because the happy couple are married now and need their keepsake!

Thank you for all your congratulations on my 100th post! I was thrilled to read them all! I am still knitting the stripey rug and believe my future holds sewing. Clothes, soft furnishings, quilts, accessories - I'm not fussy! Any or all of the above would work for me this week!

Friday 15 February 2008

My 100th Post!!! (Work in Progress)

I was going to call this post "Work in Progress", but when I got to blogger I noticed that this is my 100th post! And then I figured that "Work in Progress" describes the baby rug shown below and also my blog. When I started blogging last year I was looking for a way to encourage myself to complete craft projects, and also for interaction with likeminded crafty people. I was already brimming with inspiration because I was reading crafty blogs and I wanted to transform this inspiration into crafting of my own. I was already a sewer and crafter, but hadn't had the motivation to craft for a while. I initially found blogging difficult. Difficult to get on a computer (Hey! There were nine of us living here at the time. You try competing with teenagers who need their daily fix of MSN and My Space!), difficult to get hold of a camera, and difficult to navigate the computer and blogger. (Yes, I'm a reformed technophobe!) The more I practised the friendlier the computer seemed! Miss 21 left for overseas and left her computer (George) in my care, and I got my very own digital camera. Now the only problem is the crafting! (And I even have a crafting room!) I'm getting more organised and I'm thinking more about how I can be more productive and what I want from life. I have gone from posting sometimes to posting more regularly. I want to keep this up because posting is so fun! Hopefully my crafting output will increase this year too.

This is the rug from the "knitting" post. I started it yesterday and I'm really enjoying it. It's my "I'm a mother who doesn't want to be bored" project at the moment. I try to always have one of these on the go. That way when you have to take the kids to (piano lessons, basketball training, the library, their friend's house, ballet classes, basketball games, golf lessons, craft classes, Open Access College activities, the playground, homeschool activities etc, etc, etc.) insert one here, you are not bored and feel that you are achieving something. You can even grab your current project as you head out to the doctor's appointment, the hospital, the physio and anywhere else where they consider that you won't mind waiting for them to get around to you! It's a sanity preserver in those situations.

I sewed up the booties. These are so cute. And smaaaaaaaaall!!! Miss 15 says (uncharitably) that I don't remember how small babies are. (Right kid. Thanks for that! I have hardly any "baby" experience at all. Afterall, pushing out 8 babies is not enough to give me that experience!) I'm pretty sure that these booties would not have fitted most of my kids. Mr 19 (10lbs 10oz) now wears size 16 shoes (try buying them in Australia!) and always had big feet. Mr 13 (11lbs 13oz) now wears size 14 shoes (Yeah, we can't do the "act your age, not your shoe size" joke with him at the moment!) which are equally as hard to find. Of course we're not sure what Mr 7 (11lbs 4oz) will get up to! And even the girls (who were all smaller than the boys) wear size 9 or 10 shoes. Anyway, I don't think they would fit my kids, but Mrs 23 is not one of my huge kids so they might fit her little boy.

A cake to celebrate my 100th post! I'm looking forward to many more! (This was the most celebratory photo I could find!)

Wow! Amy Butler!

I just looooooooove these trousers! These photos are from Amy Butler's website. Wonderful, wonderful fabric! Amy does have a lovely quilt (shown below) but how great are these clothes made from her fabrics? How amazing it must be to design fabric and then to use it in other designs (clothing, bags, quilts etc)! That's really handmade.

Beautiful skirt too! Looking at these clothes from Amy Butler just makes me want to rush out and sew clothes! So much inspiration! So far this week I haven't managed any sewing. I have knitted booties and finished the stripey trousers I was knitting. I have just cast on a rug and am having great fun knitting it. I love fat needles! The rug is knitted with 8 ply wool and 5.5mm needles. Photos of my knitted things tomorrow!

Tuesday 12 February 2008


I have gone from not considering myself to be a knitter to enjoying it immensely. I don't know if I have mentioned this before or not, but I am a brilliant crotcheter. I don't talk about it because my crotcheting days are over. I have arthritis and cannot crotchet without pain. I gave it up two years ago and my hands feel much better for it. Knitting doesn't cause me the same physical symptoms so I'm growing to love it. I have finished knitting the striped trousers I posted about, but have yet to sew them up. Don't think that counts as finished!

Mrs 23 and I bought some baby knitting books on the weekend. I think she is feeling a little better and thinks she just might be able to knit something for her little boy. She is in love with the green overalls. We both love the pink jacket and I love the rug.

I have crotcheted rugs for lots of babies and it feels strange not to be making one for my new grandson, so I've decided to get big and brave and knit a rug. I love this rug. It's garter stitch! Even I should be able to do that!

I have started on some garter stitch booties. They are so cute! And simple. I'm working on the second one at the moment. This is the reason why I think I wouldn't be very good at socks. It's hard to knit a second one!

Friday 8 February 2008


I have been spending far too much time surfing around looking at quilting blogs (according to my husband!). There are soooooooo many amazing blogs and quilters out there! I have spent all week being dazzled and inspired. It just makes me want to rush out and quilt!

I saw this great concept on May Britt's blog (I think) and felt I just had to show it on my blog because this is one of my aims this year too. Not just with quilting fabrics, but also with clothing fabrics. I just have too much stuff so I'm trying to use as much fabric as possible from my stash.

I know I already showed Mrs 23 at her graduation, but couldn't resist this photo of her baby bump. Can't wait for the weekend! I'm gonna sew, sew, sew! Hopefully next time I talk to you there will be deliciously crafty goodness.

30 Days of the Everyday : No. 30!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mrs 23 (picklesticks) "graduated" today. A textiles certificate 3. Notice the baby bump. (22 weeks) Even after 30 days of practise I'm still the queen of blurry photos.

30 Days of the Everyday : No. 29

Mr 19 has been on the 5am shift for a couple of weeks now. He's always tired. This is what he looks like when someone at the park across the road plays her recorder when he's trying to nap!

Wednesday 6 February 2008

Painting (on canvas not walls)

I haven't done any more on my quilt back. I stood looking at my cutting table and thought I would tidy my sewing room instead of cutting out. What a surprise! (Considering how much I love cutting out!) My sewing room is quite trashed so it's taking a while to tidy. It's good to get things straight.

And that's what Miss 15 did to Miss 17's hair last night. Miss 17 has curly hair and usually just lets it be. Once it was straight we had to take a photo cause it's soooooooo much longer straight! (She looks so different too) I think she wins the award for the longest hair ever at our house. Maybe. I guess Miss 21's hair could be longer. She's been overseas for about 6 months now and I'm not sure how long her hair is.

To the painting. For many reasons I haven't painted in a long while. It's kind of to do with time and space really. Last year Mrs 23 wanted to go to a painting/collage course and I went with her. It was full-on, but fun. And this was the result. Mine didn't look anything like anyone elses! I can't help it. I'm a sucker for those bright colours. It was actually a very creative time and my head was full of all sorts of ideas. I went home with grand ideas to produce more work, but just never did. I found this painting whilst doing the sewing room tidy. Maybe this year I'll paint some more. Maybe.

30 Days of the Everyday : No. 28

Our apple tree grew apples! They're yum!

30 Days of the Everyday : No. 27

Hmmm........... Don't you love how those biodegradable packing bits stick to things when you lick them? NOT! I wonder who did this?

Monday 4 February 2008

Progress on the quilt back I'm piecing.

As mentioned in my 30 days post I have been looking at this a lot the past couple of days.

It has been some of the funnest piecing I have ever done. I'm just making it up as I go along which is a really fun way to put a quilt together! I started with the narrow strip of offcuts of the American Jane fabrics. I just started cutting the fabrics and then started sewing. I have done a little unpicking, but not much. It's kind of freeing to piece a back, because I don't think that I could just make up a quilt top! It would be too scary.

I have to admit that it doesn't look like I imagined it would, but I'm still pretty happy with the result. I have a black and white strip, a black, white and coloured strip, and the final strip I am still working on is a coloured strip. Perhaps tomorrow I will finish it and then I can quilt it!

I took the photos of the quilt back on my "new" cutting table in my sewing room. Brad has been busy preparing my cutting table for me so that I can more easily cut out clothes. I love sewing clothes, but hate cutting them out so a large cutting area is meant to encourage me in the cutting department! Don't know if it will work or not! Stay tuned to see the value of the new cutting table.

30 Days of the Everyday :No. 26

This is what I have been looking at for the past 3 days.

Sunday 3 February 2008

30 Days of the Everyday : No. 25

Okay, possibly not everyday. This shark captured my teenager's imaginations. How did it get here, on a main road nowhere near the beach?

Friday 1 February 2008

Shhhhhhhh! It's a secret!

Who can believe that it's February already! Time flies, and yet this has been a long week. Despite the fact that we had a public holiday on Monday and it was a short week! Not a lot of crafting, but we did have some excitement. Mrs 23 (Picklesticks) is pregnant and had her ultrasound this week. She was excited because there actually IS a baby in there. She was convinced that she was feeling sick for no good reason, but was thrilled to see a wriggling, kicking baby on the screen! We were excited because now we know what kind of baby she is having. I just checked her blog and she hasn't posted anything about her ultrasound, so I'm not going to say anything. Anyway, back to the craft. I have been knitting baby trousers for my future grandchild this week. I'm using Paton's Dreamtime in Navy and White that I got from Kmart in Mt Gambier. I must have been inspired! I love the yarn! It's so wonderful to knit with.

I am also working on the quilt back. I'm still not sure exactly what I'm going to do with it, but I decided to start piecing and see what happens!

I have some scraps of the American Jane fabric, some of the black and white fabrics, and some solids that I'm going to mix-up somehow tomorrow. After the basketball of course.

30 Days of the Everyday : No. 23

Some weeks everything just gets on top of you! Pots n pans this week!

30 Days of the Everyday : No. 22

Hmmm...... an everyday view of my hallway.