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RIP old camera

It only seems like yesterday that I bought this camera but looking at my records it was 2005.  It has been around the world several times.  Up mountains, into the desert, been repaired twice and now it is dead.

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They don't make spare parts for it anymore.  So, I HAVE TO buy a new camera.  I have a lot of lenses for this one so I will buy another Canon that they can be used on.

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A big purchase but it is about the same price I paid for the dead one 16 years ago.  How can that be?


Strange subject but there are some people here on the island who paint rocks and them hide them for others to find.  Children can keep the rock if they want to but adults are asked to re-hide them for some one else to find.  And guess what?  We found a rock.

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We wanted to keep it but decided to re-hide it for someone else to have the pleasure of finding as was asked in the message on the back.

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So looking up the group I find there are over 35,000 members.  All spreading sunshine around the place.

As school has just re-started I bought Monique a new school bag to carry her books here.  Something other than the traditional back-pack.

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And as I didn't want to leave out Jasmine I got her a rock painting kit.

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Maybe she could hide some on the island?

New Term

School starts today so not much time for anything else.  But I do have a new book called "Why we Drive" by Matthew Crawford.

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I am so enjoying this book.  It isn't a novel but rather looks deeply at our society through the lens of this American.  Much of his observations could be applied to any first world country.  He puts words together in an order that makes reading a pleasure.  I have borrowed this book from the on-line library at my local council but I think it is important enough to buy a hard copy.  It is one of those books that explains so much of what is going on in our world today.  

His thoughts on the company "Uber"  ( the taxi replacement Company) is great.  I, for one, refuse to use Uber and if I need a car will call a taxi.  My children and most of my friends use their services all the time.  After reading his explanation of their business model I understand what it is I didn't like about this Company but I never had any firm evidence or understanding for my beliefs.  Now I do.  He also shows that how much everything changes it stay much the same, reaching back to Greek of Roman writers to illustrate his point.

The review from Penguin books said,

"Driving, it turns out, offers a near-perfect embodiment of the broader changes being wrought by government and technology throughout our lives. In Why We Drive,the philosopher and mechanic Matthew Crawford shows the driver's seat to be one of the few remaining places where we still regularly take risk, exercise skill and enjoy freedom. But it is here too that we discover what we are losing to automation and the technocrats, and who will profit from the vision of progress they press upon us."

There is much debate here about the Federal Government insisting that Companies like Google and Facebook pay for the news that they copy from Australian Companies, both print and on-line.  Trying to understand the broader picture of exactly what is taking place here, (Google has threatened to close it's search engines to Australia), has been my reason for my search for more information.  There are far more academic books on this subject but this one is written in a way that is informative and interesting to read.

I am going to have to read his other book, "The case for working with your hands", after this.

The end of the month

Well that is January gone!  It didn't stick around too long.  School returned this week but my student goes back on Monday next week.  My husband bought a new screen so that she can see better.  Problem is he bought one without a camera built in or a mic!!   We won't know until next week if this arrangement will work or if we will have to go back to the lap top only.

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I got a nice little stand at IKEA to put that screen on and the lap top slips away nicely.  My husband built a box to put it on.  I'm not using that!

Reviewing my 'To Do' list for this year I have only made progress in 3 areas.  The knitted animals has seen progress with 4 nearly finished.  As I only plan on making 12 I think I can slow down on this one. The class sample will be finished this week and although I am only up to Module 3 of stitching faces I have made progress. The charity quilt is a year long progress so that is on track. That leaves the rest.  My Easter gifts have moved to the top of the list, Easter is just around the corner and I want to get one or two portraits finished in February.

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As I can't see to stitch at night I will have to look at some knitting.  There is so much to choose from.  What I will need for winter is a new hat.  I have knitted this one before as a gift for a friend.  I think I should do one for me.


Australia Day

This is a day when 'white' Australia celebrate the arrival of Europeans to this continent.  Our first nation people call it "Invasion Day".  To most people it is just a public holiday where they can be together with family and friends.  This year I personally have moved my position on this day.  I would like to see it moved to another date, one we could all feel happy with.  Deliberately making many of our fellow country persons feel bad by reminding them of all that separates us can't be good.  Choosing another day where we can all celebrate our nation would be better and make the words of our national anthem,

"for we are one and free"

a reality.

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On a whim

That is how I would describe how I came to start this paper piecing project, on a whim.  It is actually a very relaxing way to sew, once you get over using the wrong interfacing, but even that isn't a problem.  I think this will make a nice quilt and will make a good donation quilt as well.  Instead of the one block a week I think two will be better and probably quicker to put it together.

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I want to ask my neighbour if she will give me of a copy of foundation pieced block of a lorikeet she designed to put into this quilt.  Margaret was one of the founders of foundation piecing publishing a number of books.  I remember back in my classroom days buying a CD of patterns that she had published.  All the students sewed a block and put it into a piece of work we were doing.

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Another whim that has turned out well is my little dog, Bear.  He has become a firm part of the family and is a constant companion.  His fur still has a way to go but it is growing back after the RSPCA shaved him to get rid of a matted tangled coat.

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He had been keep in-doors I think for most of his life and had to be taught how to go outside to relieve himself when I first got him.  Now he runs off the lead on the beach everyday, has taken over ownership of the house and even insists on sleeping on my bed!

I was reading Kate Davies blog the other day and the role of Serendipity, which is a bit like a whim.  It has made me have a real re-think about the technology I use.  Setting up the computer for Monique's classes today saw me become very frustrated with Google and the roles that Twitter and Facebook play in our technological lives.  It would seem that we are being moulded by these Tech companies, mainly to sell us stuff.  I don't want to be force-fed by them and would much rather wander around the net and find my own information on a whim.


The list for 2021

So, the list of "To Do's" is ready for the coming year.  Last year saw me take the opportunity to finish many outstanding projects.  This year, although that list has been reduced, I haven't added all the things I could have.  I know that with Home Schooling my time is going to be limited so no use setting goals that will be impossible.  I might find time to do some of them but then again I may not.  No need to set impossible expectations.  I have left lots of spaces to add extras.

(Oh dear, I forgot the charity quilt! I will have to add that.)

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The "Stitching Faces" class with Sue Stone and the book "Faces of Friendship" are linked.  Those are the faces of my quilting friends and the friendship blocks they gave me all those years ago.  It just so happens that the classes facilitate my portraits of friends.  The first section was of those friends who have died.

Screen Shot 2021-01-03 at 8.25.09 amIn the next section the portraits will be more detailed.  These will be of members of the group who have moved away but whom I still count as friends.

That Graffitti Quilt requires just one more applique to the main section.  I was going to add a border but now I'm not so sure.


I am way behind on the 'Stitch Club' classes.  I'm not sure that I want to stitch all of them so I will 'cherry pick' the ones I find interesting.  I will keep my subscription for the year to these classes and then review where I am going.  Those quilting gifts for Easter are well on the way to being finished so I will keep these for my weekends when I visit Toowoomba, then again it might be better to just 'get in' and get then done.

I did decide to make my Charity donation knitted animals this year.  I have nearly finished the first one.  Just her dress to go.  These are really relaxing to work on at night listening to music or a podcast.  (I have to re-do the mouth.  I didn't have any tapestry wool.)

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But high on the list is my teaching sample for "Exploring More Stitches".  That is now drawn up and needs to be finished by the end of the month.

The Kogin stitched bags will be for Xmas gifts at the end of the year and they are my indulgence.

Now I just need fate to step in and blow it all out of the water!!!

A look back before heading forward

Well that was different, the year past that is. 

Personally there were a lot of positives, some downs, but that is life.   People keep saying "when life returns to normal", meaning the way it was.  I don't think we will return to that 'normal' we will have to negotiate a new form of normal just to go forward.

I pulled out my "To Do" list for 2020 to see just how I went.

Screen Shot 2021-01-02 at 1.11.03 pmNot too bad considering.  I had to adjust to the new conditions of COVID and when I listed the things I had done, extra to this list, I wonder where I found the time.

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There were some major life events this year past.   The marriage of my daughter,

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and the deaths of my beloved dogs Charlie and Chester,

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then the arrival of Bear.

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Also, in the last part of the year, taking on the home schooling of my grand daughter.  This is going to be my biggest challenge for the next two years until she gets to high school.

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So overall there were more positives than negatives.  No-one I know died from the virus, which is a wonderful blessing.  My Quilting friendships  have just became deeper and more meaningful.  I will still be able to attend the Embroiderers' Guild on the occasional Saturday.  I got a new car and although there were a few 'wobbles' I managed my PTSD remarkably well.  Physically things took a step backwards, but I can still function and I now have a permanent disability parking sticker for the car,  so that is a plus.  (This could have happened when I was knocked down by that car when I was 16, but it has held off until I was old.)   The only big minus' is the inability to travel, outside our state or overseas and not being able to go to concerts or plays and really that is just an inconvenience. 

Now to make some plans for this coming year!!!

New Year's Eve

So here we stand at the cusp of another year.  I found a quote that I think will be my moto for this next year.  I have printed it out, laminated it and put it up on my book case.

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I will leave it until tomorrow to look at what I achieved during this last year.  I might even leave it until the whole weekend is over.


Happy New Year.


The days inbetween

Those days in between Xmas and New year some how just muddle through.  I don't need anything from the sales, all the fabric shops are shut and so are lots of other business.  As I found out when I went to get some service on a hearing aid.  I did manage a trip to the Doctor to get my Vit B injection so my mind is working again.  The humidity is sky high here and the beaches are full of day trippers and holiday makers.  You can't get a seat at the local coffee shop and now it is starting to rain. 

So it is time to bunker down with a book and listen to the radio.  I got a good book from my sister for Xmas.

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I have read all of Jane Harper's books and this one doesn't disappoint either.  Set in Tasmania it is a great story, so far.

The other thing I bought was a new Diary for 2021.

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I am surprised just how much I have to put into it already.  Next year is going to be a busy one, that is unless that virus upsets all my planning.  The new year is rushing to greet us and after all the turmoil of 2020 I have been thinking about where I am headed.  My health has not been good this year and I am still dealing with the repercussions of Ross River Fever virus I got nearly 3 years ago.  That has left me with a movement disability that I thought I would recover from but it looks like it is here to stay.  Upside of that is I have a  disability parking sticker for the car.  It leaves me wondering just how long it will take for those that got Corona Virus to fully recover. There are stories emerging of it leaving lingering problems for some.  Just like myself and the Ross River Fever.