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November 2019
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January 2020

December 2019

Taking a short break

Well Xmas is over, (thank goodness) and it is only a few days until the New Year.  This is a really busy time of year for me.  My grand daughter's birthday is today, 9 years old, and I am preparing for all the holiday makers who are visiting.   My workroom is about to be taken over with beds so I am packing away all my stitching and just keeping out some cross stitch that I can sit and do if I get a chance.

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I am still not up to cooking for lots of people so we will be having BBQ's or eating at the resort, which suits me fine.  I hope to get some ME time in all this activity so that I can look at the year gone by, review my progress against my goals and set out what I want to achieve next year.  One good thing happened just before Xmas, well I hope it is good.  The lack of mobility and a lot of my pain is being caused by bone spurs on my spine.  At this point I am not going to have them shaved off in an operation but have decided to do a course of physio.  (I had the same thing in my neck 30 years ago and physio has kept that in check.)

The other good thing is that it has been raining and is raining now, the water tanks are filling up again.  As usual all good things have a shadow and this one takes the form of a plague of mozzies.  As no one visited on Xmas Day, which upset me no end, (it all happened on Boxing Day), I spent the day making myself a food throw (and bag), a big one to go on my outside table.  Now I need the write a tutorial for it.   It isn't a quick project, it takes some time but it uses lots of scraps and is very usefull.

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I will be back on January 5th, 2020.  Goodness, 100 years ago in the 1920's there were flappers, women started to become visable and an economic depression, I wonder what 2020 will bring?



Toowoomba Visit

I took a trip to visit friend Angela last week, one of the many reasons I just shut down afterwards.  It is a long drive there and back and on the way back a truck exploded not far in front of me to add to the excitement.  Still, I love my visits ups there.  We had lunch at the James St Grocers, which leaves just about everything in Brisbane for dead.  I will be going there again.

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Another regular shop we visit is St Vinnies.  Here I bought an old hat, to go fishing in, and a couple of damaged embroideries.  All for the princely sum of $3.00

The embroideries were both very dirty and damaged.  But I have now got them a lot cleaner but the linen is still full of holes.  Another thing on my list for 2020 is doing some recycling.  I think these 2 pieces might fit the bill.

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The stitching on this one is so good I had real trouble telling what was the right and wrong side.  Maybe a couple of pin cushions?

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This one had the same design at each end.  A book cover?

Now I have to decide just how many of these I will do.  I thought maybe one a month?  I still have a few days to think about that and I must remember that I always over estimate what I am able to do!

Goodness, I've just realised it's Xmas Eve.  How did that happen?


Between all the Xmas parties and shopping it has been too much for me and I have become ill , again.  But, today I am out of bed and organising my life.  My daughter came to visit me whilst I was ill bringing her old dog Chester.  He and Charlie have grown up together.  They first met when Charlie was only 5 weeks old.

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My daughter lived at home at that time and these two were firm friends.

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Choppy, who passed away recently, was part of the crew but now there are just these two.  Like me, they are getting old but are still firm friends.


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I have been playing around with this image to see what I can come up with for a small quilt.

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I think I will have this one printed on fabric and then quilt the details.  One of my jobs for 2020.

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Yet another week to forget

The air quality has been so bad I have been back in my room for most of the week.  When I did venture out I found it took a couple of days to recover.  So, life is a little boring here.  One thing I have been doing is watching the garden grow. Literally!!  We had new fences put in and within  one week some of the vines went from below the ground, because they got stomped on, to the top of the fence.   That gives you some idea of the humidity.  In one storm we got a months rain overnight.


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It has been very hot and humid but this afternoon gale force winds swept in and that blood red sun was in the sky again.  That means that some poor people will be fighting fires again.

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The sea went from tropical, blue and inviting in the morning to grey and whitecaps in the afternoon.

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The winds have already pushed one boat onto the beach,

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I bet a few more will join it by the morning.

I have been busy with my card stitching.  I still have another dozen to finish.

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I found that adding a bit of weight to the fabric in the form of dressmaking interfacing made the stitching a bit easier.

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Next year I will either start in June with these or just revert to the bought version.

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One of the gifts I received from one of my Quilting Buddies has me wondering just how it was made.  She said that she used a postage tube cut into pieces for the top but I'm not sure how the bottom was constructed. It opens to make a thread bin.

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Still it is a handy gift.

Back to bed, again.

Like lots of other people I am finding the smoke from the fires debilitating.  Lots of just sitting or back to bed.  But I have risked the smoke a couple of times to see my grand daughters receive prizes for their school work.  I also keep surfing the internet and finding books.  A little while ago I wrote about Ruth Singer and decided that I could use her new book," Fabric Manipulations".  Most of the techniques in the book I already am familiar with but the ribbon folding is new to me and reminds me greatly of Japanese origami.  It was worth buying for this alone.

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I also bought a second hand book from the same author, "Sew it up".

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Not a thing I didn't know in it but my daughter keeps asking me for books to improve her dressmaking and this has all the basic techniques.  I have given her my more advanced books but I think this will be a perfect Xmas gift.  As I said, this is a second hand book, it cost me $15 including postage.  It is hard bound, thick and heavy.  Looking inside the cover I see it has come from a library in England.  I don't think any money was made by the seller here, but it has gone to a good home.

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To the girls, Monique won the academic award for her year level.  She is high functioning Aspergers, in fact although she is in year 3 she has a lot of her lessons with the year 6 students.  She is also very musical, playing keyboard, viola and trombone, and she sews. (Grandma loves this.)

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Jasmine is in year 2 and is our artist and very academically able but is not so keen on sewing, yet.  (She is super shy and looks so like my sister.)

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Oh dear, I know Xmas is going to get me.  I am so behind on my work.


It is hot, dry and windy.  We are enveloped in smoke, yet again.  My asthma is in full swing and I can't stop coughing.

I read a poem once by Elizabeth Bishop, called "One Art".    (It is copyright so I can't print it here.)

It describes how we deal with loss.  How little by little we accept it.  We accept the burning of the Amazon, it is so removed.


We accept the burning of Siberia, that is at the other end of the earth in the Arctic.


The coral reefs are under threat.


The list grows longer and longer, but we accept the loss of all these things, maybe because they seem to happen in isolation and we have time to accept the loss.

It is time to stop the acceptance and act. Time is running out.

Another revision

I have made another food throw in an effort to refine the techniques used to make it.

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I have devised another method to add the binding which eliminates the need for any hand sewing at all.  I just have to get the widths right.  There is a lot of sewing in these throws and I haven't been able to work out why it is taking so long to make.  Then I realised that the doctor has me on new medication for blood pressure.  He was quick to tell me it wasn't a heart problem, but a problem with my auto immune system.  What ever it is those tablets slow me down something shocking. 

This one is for my sister.  I will give it one more try and then leave it at that.  I have embroidery to do!


We were supposed to get severe storms with little rain.  So, when the rain began I wasn't hopeful.  Just a trickle to go into the tank.

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There was quite a bit of lightening and Charlie had to sit very close.  Then the heavens opened and the most beautiful rain came pelting down.  We even had puddles.

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The girls were far too busy to help me with the Xmas decorations, besides, I saw a python down there and there is no way I am going anywhere near that.  Jesus and the rest of the nativity are down there too, under the house.  I think I will just buy a new set.

But I did put out the Xmas runner for the hall table and added some small trees.

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And I bought a small tree from Ikea that I have added some lights too.

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The tree out the front of the house is to be lit up as well.  But, it might rain again tonight so that can wait.

It now feels as though Xmas is really on the way.