About Me

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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

Monday 31 October 2011

Blogtober - the review

Well, I didn't manage it. Blogging every day in October I mean. I only managed 24 posts. Of course, that was a lot more than I would have done otherwise, so I think I am happy with the outcome. I would like to blog more often than I do (I love having a record of my life!) and I think that blogtober has helped me focus more on blogging, so that's got to be good! Today I am feeling tired. Still getting over this wretched virus. Mr 17 who was sick much worse than me is now starting to feel himself again, so I'm sure I will be tip top by the end of the week! Of course I did shop till I dropped today at Spotlight, Patchwork with Gail B, and Ikea. I should be tired! I did go and get more fabric for Mr 11's shaggy flannel quilt. Now I have all the ingredients and I have a deadline. Thursday night. (It's a race Sarah!)

Sunday 30 October 2011

Sewing a shaggy flannel quilt - blogtober

Today I started sewing another one of those shaggy flannel quilts. I cut the flannel out sometime last year and cut out just over half of the batting last month, so I put a little over half of the quilt together today. I made a goal to make a shaggy flannel quilt for each of the kids who lived at home last year and this is the last one. (You can see the others here, here, here and here.) I figured Mr 11 won't be leaving home any time soon, but he is yearning for his very own flannel quilt. I am beginning to think though that his quilt may need to be a little bigger than originally planned and I might have to go to the fabric shop to purchase more flannel. Both of his brothers were 6 feet tall when thirteen which isn't all that far away now. Oh well, if I must go to the fabric shop, I must!

Friday 28 October 2011

A yellow dress this time - blogtober

It looks a little yellow here, but in real life it is a buttery yellow.
It's hard to believe from this photo that this dress is the same as the one in yesterday's photo, but it is. Here it looks to me like a doll dress and like it wouldn't fit that granddaughter of mine at all, but it does. I haven't done much else today. A couple of school runs. That's about it. My Bradley even had to go off to the fish and chip shop to procure some dinner for us tonight. Chips and dim sims which caused a cry of glee from the very young here. Maybe I'll go look at the gleeful chips and dim sims.

Thursday 27 October 2011

OK. Back in the land of the living - blogtober.

I'm still sick, but have been pottering around at home this week. I felt I really didn't have anything to blog about, but Mrs 27 (picklesticks), who is still visiting with us, figured I should blog this. In fact she even took these photos. (Thanks Jess) This is three month old granddaughter 2 wearing the new dress I managed to finish for her this week. I also managed to finish sorting and tidying the sewing room and the lounge room revamp is just one area away from being finished too. Actually you can get quite a lot done pottering around I think. My Bradley celebrated his birthday this week and I decided to make him a sticky date pudding in lieu of a birthday cake. I had never made one before, but managed to find a most delicious recipe which was also extremely easy to make. It was so easy I made two of them and we have been enjoying the leftovers. Mr 11 has a birthday party with his friends coming up and he has requested the sticky date pudding as his birthday cake for that event. (I know! You know your kids are all grown up when your baby requests a sticky date pudding for his birthday cake!) Anyway, back to the sewing. I have another little dress cut out so will try to finish that tomorrow. Hopefully I will be feeling much better then! (I needed two naps today to get through the day. Bring on tomorrow!)

grandson showing his sister how to smile for the camera
Oh. And notice the Tis the Season quilt. That's what we have been doing with those quilts this week!

Sunday 23 October 2011


... and miserable. *sigh* Mr 17 has been sick since Thursday and now we are sick together. Mr 11 joined in first and now me. I'm planning to have the most awesome sleep ever tonight and wake up tomorrow morning fully recovered! (Well, you've got to have a plan.)

Saturday 22 October 2011

Saturday's Post - blogtober

Grant's Picnic Ground
A busy day. We stopped off to see Puffing Billy at Belgrave this morning with our grandchildren and then I spent the rest of the day sorting, sorting, sorting.

Friday 21 October 2011

Older - blogtober

Happy Birthday!
 Mr 10 became Mr 11 today. We had a birthday dinner with him this evening. It's quite strange to think that my baby is 11. It seems like just the other day that we went to the hospital so that I could push him out. It didn't take long actually. We were only there for a couple of hours before he arrived. All 11 odd pounds of him. Of course, a lot has changed. When he was born all my children were children. Now some of them have children! Only half of them are left at home and even they are old! I think he had a good evening. He is downstairs watching an action movie with the others. (I don't know. Action movies are just not my thing.)

Happy Lights
This is the only bit of the lounge room reshuffle that I feel happy to show you. My one year old granddaughter calls these happy lights. No, it doesn't need subsequent trips to Ikea, I am just not finished yet. Maybe I will be done sometime tomorrow. And when I am done. There will be photos!

Thursday 20 October 2011

A partly finished dress - blogtober

I seem to talk about long term projects here quite a bit. This is one you may not have thought of as a long term project. A tiny dress that I cut out in 2010 for a granddaughter, that I am sewing in 2011 for a different granddaughter. I started sewing it yesterday, and whilst there has been progress today, it's not finished yet. I am using a seersucker fabric. I love seersucker! So soft, so cool in the summer months. Anyway, my fairly ordinary amount of sewing achieved today was because I embarked on a bigger project. I decided to shift my living room around. Something I have been thinking of for a while. Bam! I was hit with inspiration today and decided that THIS was the moment! It's not quite finished yet, but hopefully that will happen tomorrow. The shuffle neccessitated a visit to Ikea (of course) to pick up a now urgently needed item. All I can say is thank goodness Ikea is open until 9pm every week night here in Melbourne! I took "before" photos this morning, so if it turns out beautifully tomorrow I will show you. If I don't post it you can assume another visit to Ikea is in order!

Wednesday 19 October 2011

My how the weather has changed! - blogtober

The coldest day ever!
You know I'm struggling for blog fodder when I start talking about the weather, right? Well, I have done some sewing today, but there are no photos! So perhaps I am struggling for images. Today was warm. My Davis weather station told me it got to 30 degrees celcius in my backyard today. Our first really warm day for the season here in Melbourne. The photo above was taken in August when our grandson came to visit us for a little holiday. It was soooo cold that day at the playground that immediately after this photo was taken he agreed to put a jumper on! (Something that has only happened a couple of times this year.) Well, two months later and he is visiting again and it is hot! He has had to eat several ice blocks today to keep cool. In fact, we all have!

I managed to sew a little of a dress for granddaughter two today. This morning we had a friend come by to learn to sew. She is determined to sew clothes for her daughter. She started by learning to thread the machine and do a little sewing. Then she traced a pattern and cut it out. I think if she enjoys the sewing she will actually do it because she is very determined. Next week she will come back to learn how to put the shorts together. I have decided to sew one day a week and invite others to come sew with me. I so miss my sewing groups that I sewed with last year that I decided I should make my own happen. I'll let you know if anyone turns up next week!

Tuesday 18 October 2011

Pinboards! - blogtober

Three pinboards in the sewing room.

As part of the tidying process I have been putting pinboards and pictures up. (Five pinboards yesterday. No wonder I am in love with pinterest. Pinboards feature largely in my life!) I use the 3M removable velcro hooks to hang pinboards. It works wonderfully and really is removable! (I actually reused the velcro hooks from the last house, just with new adhesive sections.) Today I started pinning up some of my favourite things. My sewing room just keeps getting happier!

A closeup of my favourite things!

Monday 17 October 2011

Tidying the Sewing Room - blogtober

One of the things my daughter and I plan to do whilst she's here is sew together. Of course, it's never quite that simple, is it? My sewing room is messy. The pinboards aren't on the wall and my cutting out table is piled high. Then there's the washing, meal preparation, and child tending. Let's just say that we haven't started sewing yet. However, today we did make a dent in the mess and the washing. Oh. And the pinboards are finally up. Tomorrow looks like more of the same and then Wednesday we should be sewing!

Sunday 16 October 2011

Visitors! - blogtober

daughter-in-law, along with her nephew (grandson)


my Bradley along with granddaughter 2

picklesticks and granddaughter 2
It's a family kind of weekend here, with picklesticks (daughter) visiting with her three children and our daughter-in-law visiting on the tail end of a business trip. So, a full house today and a busy one at that. We have grand plans to spend a week or two sewing. We'll see how we go!

Saturday 15 October 2011

Black Cockatoo - blogtober

I had a great day today! Not sure what it is, but not having a migraine today really gave me a zest for life. Everything seemed impossibly wonderful. Then late this afternoon I saw three black cockatoos and I knew it was a wonderful day for sure! You see in Australia we have lots and lots of cockatoos. Mostly they are the white, sulphur crested cockatoos pictured below. They are everywhere! (And noisy too! Of course, I can forgive them that because they are beautiful.)



run of the mill
But black cockatoos are pretty rare so it really was a special day today! The cockatoos I saw looked something like this. (Not my photo)

black cockatoo, wikipedia
We actually have a sulphur crested cockatoo featured in part of our family folklore. When Mr 17 was just 18 months old we went to visit one of my Bradley's cousins. They lived on a farm and apart from dairy cows the farm was also home to rescued wildlife. They had a cocky in a cage and for some reason as my little boy toddled across their grass the cocky opened it's cage (have I said they are pretty smart creatures?) and went straight for my boy. It got in his face and then bit his top lip open. They have very strong beaks! There was blood everywhere and our visit was cut short so that we could race our 18 month old to the hospital. Apparently cocky's beaks are not only strong, but also full of germs so in addition to having to have plastic surgery on his lip to sew it up (general anesthetic) he also had to have an IV of antibiotics. It made for an interesting weekend and makes a pretty interesting story too. I still love cockatoos, but Mr 17 is not so sure. He doesn't really trust them!

Friday 14 October 2011

Wishing for a grey day - blogtober

... but not getting one. I have had a migraine the past couple of days and missed posting. I love grey days, especially grey, wet days because they make your aching head feel better. Maybe this is why I am a winter girl rather than a summer lover. Anyway, winter appears to be over for sure, even here in Melbourne. So, in order to simulate a grey day, I close the heavy curtains at our windows and sit in the dark. I have sat at my sewing desk going through my scrap basket, touching all my scraps and even ironing a few really crunkled pieces. I have a pattern in front of me along with the fabric and yet still nothing has eventuated. Maybe tomorrow. (I'm hoping for a grey day tomorrow too.)

Wednesday 12 October 2011

Ten days is all it took - blogtober

fingernail art, Miss 14's latest obsession

two penguins, three snowy scenes
Darn! Missed posting yesterday. I had one of those days (spent doing nothing much more than housework and chores!) and then spent the evening out at Young Women's (church youth group) helping 20plus 12-17 year olds with a charitable sewing project. The girls were all very fun and some of them even wanted to sew! Some of them could sew even! I was most impressed with my own young woman who took one of the newly turned 12 girls under her wing and helped her. Oh. And here are the results of her latest "thing". Picture nails. Cute penguins. I took these photos before she'd had a chance to clean her fingers up, but they're still cute!

Monday 10 October 2011

I finished a quilt today, how was your day? -blogtober

the back

second Tis the Season quilt

closeup of quilting

more, because I like it so
Yes, I finally finished my second Tis the Season quilt this morning. I like it. After finishing it I started writing my "This Week" list. That's because it was on last week's "This Week" list. It doesn't do to mix your weeks up you know. Are you a list maker? I have been writing lists of late. I'm not sure whether I get more done or not, but it feels like I do. I very bravely put a more than three year old quilt on this week's list this morning. I know how old the quilt is because it was intended for a grandchild. I have dragged it out previously and that ended in tears, so I feel brave today. I unpicked some quilting-gone-wrong on it last week and am hoping that I will be able to finish it and send it to a young man. We'll see if the list works!

Sunday 9 October 2011

PJ day - blogtober

Lego dude by Mr 17
We managed a pyjama day today. Well, I did anyway. I love days like that. And then dinner was a roast. Easiest dinner ever I think, a roast. Just get it all ready, stick it in the oven and then disappear. Dessert was fairy floss courtesy of the recent Melbourne show. A good day all round. See you tomorrow!

Saturday 8 October 2011

Some Kind of Wonderful - blogtober

This year I have been busy stitching along with about 90-odd others. (That sounds like an insult, doesn't it? None of the 90-odd are "odd". Just not sure exactly how many of us there are!) We have been stitching Natalie Bird's "Tis the Season" and it has been a joy. We share our progress with each other via a Stitch-a-Long blog. It is an encouraging place to visit, and fun too! I enjoyed stitching Tis the Season so much I stitched two quilts worth. I finished the quilting on the second quilt today. That just leaves the binding and I'm sure I will finish it in the next couple of days. So this post is about our next stitch-a-long. It comes from Anni Downs book, "Some Kind of Wonderful".

The quilt is called "My Favourite Things". The first fabrics have been shown on the blog tonight. (Check it out here.) Many thanks to Chookyblue for such fun! I'm off to think about fabrics for the new SAL!

Friday 7 October 2011

A week of pies and tarts - blogtober

A couple of pies, and some tarts from this week's sewing. I tend to do this stitching in the evening, when I can't possibly concentrate on anything else because I am just too tired or too done with the day. No such stitching this evening though. I did a little quilting on the red and white quilt this afternoon (3/4 done now) and then developed a headache so promptly took it off to bed. That's where I am now, contemplating sleep. (And wondering if I know how to turn my Bradley's phone sounds off because he is asleep and keeps getting SMSes. I'll have to work it out or wake him up I think!)

Thursday 6 October 2011

Quilting, quilting, quilting - blogtober

second Tis the Season tonight, half done
I spent another day quilting today. Well, some of today that is. There was some housework/chores that needed attention too. I am quilting my second Tis the Season in a similar manner to the first (lots of squares) but the quilting will be heavier on the second one. I tossed up whether to free motion quilt it, to go all curvy and flowery, but Mr 17 convinced me to go with squares. I am glad he did, because I am very happy with it tonight. Six of the twelve blocks are quilted. They feel great! I really love a heavily quilted quilt. They just feel so wonderful. Hopefully I will finish the other six blocks tomorrow. Then I will have to think about the binding. Red? White? A combo of the two? Or some of the stripey backing fabric?

beginning this morning

Wednesday 5 October 2011

Today I quilted - Blogtober

Just beginning to quilt
Quilting in progress

I basted my two "Tis the Season" quilts this morning and then began to quilt. It is school holidays here, which means no school run and friends over to amuse the kids. Well, the boys had friends over and played Yu-gi-oh and Magic the Gathering card games. Miss 14 amused herself with some homework and some jewellery making. My Bradley had a country trip to do, but said he would shop for and make dinner for the 10 of us who were eating here tonight. So I just quilted and quilted! It was a lovely day!

A pieced back
The finished "Tis the Season"
 And I managed to finish my first Tis the Season quilt. I love it. I am really pleased with it. The second quilt is sitting on my machine right now waiting for me to quilt it tomorrow. Tomorrow looks like it's going to be a fun day too!

Tuesday 4 October 2011

Today I sewed - Blogtober

I have been sewing today. These blocks are from my second "Tis the Season" quilt. I finished the stitcheries quite some time ago and the blocks were all half done until today. I had been thinking that I would use these blocks to make table runners and other such Christmassy items, but despite making that decision some time ago nothing much happened. I decided that perhaps that wasn't what I really wanted to do with them, so today I finished the blocks and turned them into a quilt top.

Rather than just bordering the blocks I decided to do a bit of a log cabin thing. I like it very much and can't wait to finish it! Miss 25 was assuring me today that it is time to start getting Christmassy because there is Christmas stuff in the shops already. I am disbelieving of this, but can't wait to finish my Christmas quilts so they can decorate my house! So today, sewing 1, decluttering 0. Roll on tomorrow!

Monday 3 October 2011

Our Pods, Blogtober

 I am still busy organising things here at Rosemary Hill. (Rosemary Hill is what our home is always called. Mostly because no matter where we live one of the first things I do is plant a rosemary bush. Love rosemary!) This is what one of the pods that held our stuff for six months looked like.

Mr 10 in superhero mode
It was kind of nice living in our house without a lot of stuff. There was sooo much room! I don't want you to think that there weren't upsides to having no stuff. Space is lovely. Of course, I am a stuff kind of person (You don't become a patchworker with a stash without an appreciation for stuff!) but I am beginning to wonder if we perhaps have too much stuff? So last week I got Mrs 27 (picklesticks) who was visiting with her bloke and three gorgeous children to photograph the kid's artwork from 2006 so I could get rid of it. (Great idea, right?) Now I am one folder down (It doesn't sound like much, does it?) and I have actually looked through the artwork too!

left to right, Miss 14, Mr 10 and Mr 17
Speaking of those visitors, we had picklesticks and her family and we had a surprise visit from Miss 19 as well. It was a lovely time and we are all missing them (especially my Bradley. He is "Pa" to the grandchildren and he is missing them mightily. He is missing that Miss 19 too of course. He had the privilege of driving her home to Adelaide and so got to spend nine hours with her in the car. Driving long distances can be fun!) Anyway, back to the sorting. And maybe to some throwing out? We'll see...

Sunday 2 October 2011

Blogtober Fest

 It's the second of October, but here goes. I am going to join in with Blogtober Fest, which means a post a day in October. I saw it here on Sarah's blog first and if you click the button to the right you can find the links to everyone participating. A great way to discover new blogs and to find more inspiration!

Gluing paper and fabric together
I did spend most of September working on my Pies and Tarts quilt. Mostly it was just a little each evening and there has been progress from a little each day. Some of the progress has been physical, but some has been mental too. Yes, I made a decision about the quilt. I decided I wasn't completely invested in a 100 pie quilt. So at the moment I am planning to make a 48 pie quilt, which means I am only eight pies away from a complete quilt. Eight pies and 30 tarts. Maybe one day I will pull the other five months of the BOM out and make a second quilt. Maybe.

36 pies joined together
I am still working on my Tis the Season and am up to basting the quilt. I have pulled out two other quilt tops to baste when I do it tomorrow. So this week should be a week full of quilting! (I love quilting!) I am also planning to keep working on the pies and tarts each day. Oh. And I'm planning to blog every day. (That means taking more photos, something else I love!) See you tomorrow!