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Charliie - update

Alive, but minus one eye. It was touch and go if they would get it out before it ruptured.  The vet said she must have been having severe head aches, but never a sign of that.   We go back in two weeks to have an operation on the other eye which they think can be saved.

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My bank balance is several thousand dollars lighter but hey,  it's just money.  Charlie (Charlotte) is more important. Goodness, I knew she was special to me but not 'how' special until this.


Today I will know if I have to have my dog put down.  I had been taking her to the local vet for problems with her eyes.  She has cataracts and I was told not to worry.  But worry I did and my husband took her to our old vet in town.  She is having an emergency  operation at 9am this morning.

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She has been my constant companion for the past 10 years.  I got her as a little puppy .

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I have always had family dogs but Charlie was my dog.  She laid beside me when I was ill.

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And now I may have to say goodbye to my dearest friend and her serious face.

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I do pray for a reprieve, but I don't want her to be in pain.


I am having serious reservations about Typepad.  After most of my comments being blocked, now, I find that I can't answer comments.  If this isn't resolved I might have to move my blog elsewhere which I wouldn't like to do as I have been at the address for the past 10 years.  Still, it might be the only solution.

I thought I might put a link up to Salley Mavor's new video.  boy that woman is talented.  It is a great little video and will worth the time to look at her embroidery.

Liberty and Justice.

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The other link is to the work of Claudia Pfeil on facebook.    And this one is her website.  I met Claudia in Huston last year and besides being a force of nature,  she is a wonderful quilter.  Friends Pam and Lisa have been in her shop in Germany teaching and It seems to me they were doing more falling about laughing than any serious work. 

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Coochie Ceremony

The weather here is beautiful,  Fine and warm but not too warm.  I missed the dawn service yesterday but did make it down to the mid morning service.  My Dad never missed a dawn service in all the years from the end of WW2 until his death.  I always think of him at this time.  He believed that his service in the air force was the defining act of his life.  Perhaps he was right.

Ours is only a small community but like all communities in the country we come together on this day to remember.  There were grand marches in the cities and the big towns.  Ours was small in comparison and we marched from the jetty to our small shrine, led by some local lads in WW1 uniforms, on horses.

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The nurses wore the capes I made and this  gave a dash of colour.

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The parade was led by a small group of local ex soldiers

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but there were plenty of others  in the crowd all proudly wearing their medals and a sprig of rosemary..

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Our service included reading from diaries, the first about "Bill the Bastard" the war horse from that time and tales of his exploits.

Then our nurses read accounts from the diaries of the nurses who served in WW1,  very telling.  It is not often that we have heard the voices of our women folk who served.

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Lastly came the account of Dick Martin, a Noonuckle man who enlisted as a New Zealander.  Aboriginals were bared from joining the services but over 800 still managed to enlist.

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Joshua Martin is the great nephew of that man and he still lives on Stradbroke Island with his family.  His great Uncle was killed in action in 1918.  It is also a good thing that our aboriginal people are recognised and included.   Of all those that enlisted in WW1 from Australia, and all were volunteers,  more than half their number were either killed or wounded.

Around us life went on with people picnicking on the beach.

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The war planes flew over on their way to the city parade.

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South passage had sailed up the bay to be with us.

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The trumpeter played the last post, just as beautifully, if not better than some in the city.

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And when I looked at the floral tributes that had been laid I saw that the majority were made up of native flowers.

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I looked  on the island Facebook page this morning and found that one of our residents had taken this image of our nurses at the dawn service.    I think this is rather special.

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My bed has been seeing a lot of me since last week.   I just lay there and read because that is about all I can do.  I have re-read Robin Hobbs  Farseer Trilogy and I must have read them so quickly last time or not really took in all the detail.   It was almost like reading new books.

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When I could get up and do something I have been working on the wedding dress.

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I am so afraid of making a mistake that I am taking it very slowly but I am nearly there.  I have tacked the 9 layers of net ready to cut the skirt to the right length.  I don't have a dressmakers dummy to work on so it is very slow.  The alteration to the shoulders is finished and tomorrow is the final fitting.

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Keeping the white dress clean has been a constant worry but I worked out that it was better to extend my sewing bench with an extra table up here on the 2nd floor.  I can keep the floors clean and the white fabric white with no red soil marks on it.  She is getting married here on the island so I suppose it could be all stained around the hem by the end of day.  I have attached a hanger to go over her wrist to keep that train up.  Hope it works.


Slow living

This virus sees me living my life at a much slower pace.  I have to sleep a lot and just can't do anything at my normal speed.  I am still not able to drive, my reactions are too slow, so life is confined to the island most of the time.  I did get to go to the mainland last week, I should not have gone.  I had to stay in bed for the next 3 days.

As I was coming home a rainbow formed and the end was on the island.  I thought at the time how apt that was.  This place really is a treasure.

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It is school holiday time at the moment and there are a lot of holiday makers on the island.  Before we moved here this was our holiday destination.  I have always felt this is a magical place, everyone I speak to believes that as well.  I have tried to find out from the traditional owners of the land what it is that makes it so special but they have lost that knowledge.  That doesn't change the fact that everyone who comes here feels a connection and it regretful when they have to leave.  As you can see from the message in the sand.  I have no idea who wrote it but I love the island as well.

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But I can be surprised by people who live here as well.  Maxine is a friend who lives a couple of streets away.  She is the author of the children's book who's launch we attended.  Now I find that she makes the most whimsical jewelry. 

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I just had to buy these ear rings.

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And after speaking to her I find that the character is based on a real person, who she says looks like this!.

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They are made under a magnifying glass to get all that detail.  (They are not very big.)

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She and Gary have developed there own materials.

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I need to get some more they are so quirky.  When I was teaching full time I always used to wear unusual ear rings.  I never had to say "look to the front", all eyes were already there to check what I had on that day.  This time I will wear them just to feel happy.


Those dratted mosquitos

I have been feeling very poorly for a while.  Firstly, I had a bad reaction to a prescribed drug.  Needless to say that is in the garbage.  I kept blaming that drug for how I was feeling, but, I was also bitten by a mosquito that has given me Barmah Forest Virus, ( a bit like Ross River Fever )  Seems there are quite a few of us on the island who have this.  I thought for a while that I was going to be crippled by arthritis but it is just this virus.  Bad news is it can last for over a year before you recover.  So I can look forward to more pain and tiredness. 

It does have an upside.  I have an excuse for just sitting. 

Sitting and knitting. The wool is on it's way for this one.

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Or sitting and embroidering. 

Sitting and crocheting.  I am going to make a blanket for each bunny using this pattern.

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Sometimes getting up and baking a cake.

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Sitting at the computer. 

Sitting and reading.  I've read these books before so it will not be taxing at all.

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Everything has a silver lining.


That was months away and now it is tomorrow!!

I have a ton of sewing that has to be finished.

A wedding dress to alter.  The neckline and shoulders to be changed and the hems, 9 layers of hems, to be shortened.

 Capes to be made for the ANZAC nurses for the 25th April for the memorial ceremony. (ANZAC Day)

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And this wedding dress thing is getting a bit big.  I have 2 other weddings for a couple of months time.  Funny how life goes in cycles.  In my early 20's I made wedding dresses to suppliment my income,  now I am old they turn up again.  We are going to have a quiet Easter but I'm sure the island will be busy with holiday makers.  We might have to escape to the city?


Samantha and Geraldine are finished.

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Those two have been on my 'to do' list for a few years now but the time was never quite right.  They were always destined to be for my grand daughters but with so much work involved I wanted the girls to be a little older so they could look after them better.  I am so surprised at their different personalities.  The patterns are identical but each rabbit is different from the other.  And, they took some time and a lot of effort to make.  I stitched each one in a different coloured thread so that, even without clothes on, they could tell which was which.  I am not altogether happy with the boot laces.  They are probably a bit long but little fingers have not perfected the skill of tying them so I make the laces a length they could manage.

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I see that Salley Mavor over at Wee Folk Studio has a wonderful idea for slippers that I could also sew.  ( Everything Salley does is inspiring, I have all her books.)

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At the moment their wardrobe includes;

a good dress + capelet

a skirt + jumper

and 4 pair of undies.

Each rabbit has it's own overnight bag.

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I need to make hoodies, slacks, cardigans, night clothes, quilts and pillows.  One cardigan is finished but I am a bit worried with the amount of wool I have left to finish No 2.

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Grandpa is still working on the beds so they will not be finished until after Easter and I might leave the quilts until then.

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I have become quite attached to these young girls.  They have been writting to my grand daughters so hopefully they will get a warm welcome.