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So Beautiful

My friend Angela has been quilting her old embroideries and the latest one is quite stunning.  It was a cross stitched embroidery stitched by her late mother-in-law, so it held special memories.  She turned it, from an embroidered table runner

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To a stunning work of art by mounting it on a background and then quilting it.

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This is then an heirloom for future generations.  What a wonderful way of transforming a piece of embroidery.

Mother's Day

I had a lovely morning with my family.  We breakfasted in the park and my daughter and daughter-in-law did all the cooking and arrange everything.  I was given a whole swag of loot.

The book I wanted,

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and a teddy from Monique with "Best grandmother ever" on it's T shirt and a lovely scarf from Jasmine.  My husband gave me a gift voucher, which I will put aside until the sales at the end of the season, and I also was given some flowers.

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The other gift was to see my grand daughter Jasmine crocheting like a true craft person.  She is making covers for water bottles and just churning them out.

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What a lovely day.  I am blessed.




One forgets that dogs have lives that are a lot shorter than us and this week we said goodbye to 'Cheesecake'. 

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He was my friend Hayley's dog and everyone knew him.  (Hayley owns the small farm a few doors from my home.)  Cheesecake had been abandoned on the island by his owners.  They brought him to the island and left him.  He was heartbroken.  He used to sit and wait for the barges or ferries for their return, but they never came.  Hayley took and cared for him and named him Cheesecake.

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Hayley's little farm is a refuge for abandoned animals.  There is Lollypop the donkey, who turns 21 this year, plus sheep, goats, chickens, ducks and guinea pigs, cats and a parrot.  Cheesecake used to keep them all in line.  But it was the sick or injured animals he cared for.  He would sit outside their enclosure and keep guard, whether it be a duck or cat.  His death wasn't unexpected.  He has been having trouble walking for a while and had to be pushed in a stroller when the animals went for their walk.    For such a small dog he had a big personality.

R.I.P. my little friend.

Getting last week organised

I know that sounds counter-intuative but some times I just do things and I have to get my mind to catch up with my actions!

My week started with car troubles and that just threw all my plans into disarray.  Because I had an appointment at a set time and the car battery was flat I just hopped on a bus to get to my appointment, which was at the Genius Bar at Apple.  (You have to make an appointment a week in advance they are so busy.)

The problem was with my watch, which I had lost some time ago and then found a week later in the garden.  Turns out that someone had found it, tried to get access to my information, failed, and then dropped the watch in the garden for me to find.  (Must have been someone local.)  I ended up having to buy a new  watch.

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So, Mickey is back again but I need lessons on how to work this thing.  (My phone calls keeps going to my watch!)

It was an hour each way on the bus and then another 2 hours waiting for the RACQ to come and tell me my battery was flat, then he tells me I have to drive around for another hour to charge it again.  That was Monday.

Tuesday is my day at the Embroiderers Guild.  This week there was no parking at the train station.  Luckily there was a disability parking spot at the next station but again It got me rattled.

Wednesday I had a lecture at the State Art Gallery.  I had a bad coughing attack in the middle of it.  Ended up even more rattled, I enjoyed the lecture but the place was packed and I felt stupid.

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Thursday I stopped.  I was due to judge at a regional show but I knew I couldn't drive all that distance so I cancelled at the last minute.  Something I have never done before but I knew I wasn't fit to drive.

Friday I went on that bus trip and chilled out.  I will tell you about what happened later, but by the time I got home I just about had my head together.

Saturday I was back to normal so mowed the lawns and worked in the garden till I dropped.

Sunday I unpicked my knitting.  What a mess. So I put that aside and did some 'silly stitching'.

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Now for a new week.  (I have to get that knitting sorted.)

End of the week

There is so much I could say about the happenings on International Women's Day that I'm not sure where to start.  I think the most important thing, besides saying it was a great day, with friendship and lots of stimulating ideas, was the recognition of women past and present and the sharing of ideas of how to proceed in the future.  Sharing the experience with other women was somehow more significant because of it's "ordinariness"

Let me start with the function.  As I said before, it was low key.  No notable people giving speeches, just a group of women from the Bayside suburbs of Brisbane who support the local "Schoolhouse Gallery", gathering together to recognise the role of women in our society.  Past, present and future.

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There was a selection of works on display, from both men and women artists, but the work of women featured.

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  They had taken time to decorate all the bollards with knitted and crocheted covers.  These looked colourful but certainly home made and that was part of their charm.

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The morning tea was prepared by the women themselves and it's charm was that it looked "home-made", not professionally prepared by a caterer. 

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There was tea made in a teapot, china cups and saucers, plates and serviettes and a tray to put your used utensils so they could be taken to the kitchen and cleaned.  (Not the usual disposable ones that get put in the garbage bin.)

We recognised the difficult times in which we live and how women are trying to survive in Ukrane, Turkey, Syria and other troubled places.  That what was once a whole collection of women's organisations has seen them being "watered down" and that the move to "gender equity" has actually seen many women pushed to the margins.

When I watched the news that night there was a feature about the presentation of a new set of statues outside Federal Parliament. 

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These were the first female members elected.  There were no toilets for them in the building and they had to drive to their homes to access one.

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What troubled me was that there were no young women there.  I know that many would have had home and work responsibilities but for all the gains that have been hard fought for I hope 'complacency' doesn't see them slide away.

International Women's Day

 Friend, Bev Perel, who used to own a Patchwork shop up at Maleny, has held a function to celebrate this day for years, from 2006 actually.  They were always great events with inspirational speakers and rather grand affairs, this year was a lot smaller and "low key".  Each year Bev asked if participants could donate a block, in the International colours of women, which she then made into a quilt.  This was the first one.

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This is one from 2014.

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This is this year.

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And the block that I donated acknowledging my grandmother and her membership of the suffragettes was part of it.

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It gave me a great deal of pleasure to she her here and to know that I have said "out loud" how I admire her and how her example has influenced the course of my life, in a medium that we both love, textiles.



Today is my "day off."  I was going to sit and stitch flat out, but, I have hit a wall.  I was also going to mow the lawns and tidy the garden, but that wall is right in front of me.  So, I look myself off to the coffee shop, with the dog, for a cup of tea.  (I'm restricting all coffee to just special occasions.) Also, I heard of the death of a small child, the grand daughter of a friend, and my heart began to weep.

It was a good decision.  I met a fellow quilter who lives on the island who is here from Canada, I spoke with the chef about how the kitchen is going and a light rain fell on me as I sat under a tree to drink my tea.  I got to thinking that what we concentrate on, the way we spend our time, tells us what we really care about.  Stitching is high up on my list.  As is my family.  Yesterday I dropped everything to take my grand daughter to get a new pair of shorts to wear to  "scouts". 

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She has joined to local "troop" and is off to camp.  It is the last thing I thought she would like but she loves it.

While I was sitting under my tree I read another of the essays from my book "Wheesht" by Kate Davies, again telling myself just how much I enjoy this book.

Screen Shot 2023-03-02 at 11.35.02 amI think that I will buy this as a Christmas gift for a couple of my friends.  Essays are a much underrated form of literature.  The essay writting that I studied at school put me right off this genre but this book has rekindle my interest.  (Every time I pick it up I think that.) Also, I love the way Kate writes, I learn something new each time I read something she has written.  At the end of each essay she has a list of "Creative Assignments", all of which stretch you a bit.  And at the chapter I have just read is a note to read the work of Adrienne Rich.   A poet I hadn't heard of, but , I found this poem and now have an order in at the council library to read more.

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Now I think I can sew again.

Some Shopping

I managed to make a great purchase for only $2.00!

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The cross stitch is for my grand daughter, the wool for a bennie.

Then, I managed to buy a not so great set of ipod airs for myself at $400+

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Why not so good?  Well as I am setting them up I find that my hearing aids will do the same job!!

No one explained to me that this was possible when I bought the hearing aids some time ago.  But after I set up the apps on my phone I could hear music through my hearing aids.  They are connected to my phone so that I can hear all the calls that come in.  (They must be blue tooth technology.)  This is the same technology that the airpods use, all I need to do is to install the App onto my phone and "Hey Presto" I have sound in my ears that no one else can hear.

Now I have a very expensive set of AirPods that I don't really need, all set up to go.  My daughters birthday is only a few days away, I think this might be her present.  (lucky girl!!)

The other purchase that arrived in the mail is my Gold Work Kit.  (again not cheap.)

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I am not opening this!! Can you see that list  behind it?  Well that has to be finished first.  I have to stop this starting things and not finishing.

Back to experimenting with the pin and clip pillows.


Some old photos

Some old photos have begun to appear on Facebook.  Many are from my youth in the 1960's and 1970's and I am amazed at how the sight of them can transport me back to that time.

The swimming pool where I learnt to swim.  There was another pool out of shot where the diving boards were.  Oh, I Ioved the apple fritters from the fish and chip shop.

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The railway station across the road from David Jones department store where I did my cadetship.  I started as a Xmas casual when I was 15 y.o.  I was too young to be allowed on the sales floor so did that first year in dispatch.  Everyday I got on and off the train at this station.

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The ground floor of that store.  I had started as a cadet when this "British" promotion happened.  The 'Lion'  on the shield was sculptured from card.  As there was not a lot of work for artists  many were employed in the window dressing and display department.  Some of those men and women were super talented and the culture, at that time, just had no place for them.  (No wonder my father would not let me have anything to do with art.)  Those escalators had wooden steps and I had forgotten how everyone still wore hats and gloves.

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And Cronulla surf carnival.  I might have been a child in that crowd.

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A 5 minute walk around the rocks to North Cronulla Beach Puberty Blues was being acted not that long after this.

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I'm glad someone took photos of all this.

More resolutions

I am having serious problems with my knitting and have ripped out all the final lace panel again, actually for the 4th time.  Missing one stitch is a disaster,  still, just keeping at it is the task in hand.

But, on the upside I got to go to my first concert for the year, and it was here on the island.  My friend has a beautiful property and when she was landscaping it she installed an area for concerts, a small ampitheatre.  What a great place for a recital?  Most people brought their own seating, food and beverages of choice, some even brought their dogs.

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Tidal Moon is a duo from the island, although Barbara played harp with one of the Symphony orchestras and also plays numerous other instruments. 

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I didn't really think about the music I would be hearing, and for the most part it was made up of original music that Barbara had written.  (We have some seriously talented people living here.)  In the second part of the recital another group performed, Green Gratz.  I was blown away with the 'fiddle' playing.  Mainly Celtic, but lots of other genres as well.

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Overhead the Southern Cross shone from above, the night birds called and you could hear the sea lapping on the beach.  It was a most enjoyable night.

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Then, I picked up my chair and walked home, which was a bit hairy as we have very few street lights on the island.  I trod carefully on one section of the walk home where it was pitch dark and I was frightened I might step on one of those animals that come out at night.  Namely a snake!  But, I got home in one piece.

So, I have started on my journey for another resolution, to attend concerts.  I see an advertisement for another one I want to attend coming up in February.  If I can afford the tickets I would like to attend one a month.

Schools Back

Yes, the holidays are over.  My grand daughter started at high school yesterday after a 3 year break where I helped home schooled her.  I thought I might be called on to help get her home in the afternoon but her parents have arranged with their employers that they will do this.  Things have changed so much since I had my children.  By the time the eldest was 7 years old and his brother 6 I had them travelling on their own.  They had to catch a bus from outside their school, get off in the busy Fortitude Valley, which wasn't a very savoury place for kids or any one else for that matter, cross a very busy road and then get another bus home.  If they walked home from the Valley the old Italian men who sat in the pub, which was on the way home kept an eye out for them.  They were accosted once and all the men came out of the hotel to their rescue, which they thought was very exciting.  Then I insisted they had to get that second bus, no walking.  But they learnt how to look out for their own safety and be responsible for themselves.   I also took the time to teach them how to be safe on their push bikes in the traffic in the inner city suburb.  My parents had given me similar lessons when I was 5 and 6 years old out in the country where the risks were different but still real.

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Today those little boys are in their 40's and the eldest is responsible for his own family.   I know it is easier to take the children in the car to and from school.  There is more traffic and we are more aware of the risks.  Up to 12 years of age it is against the law to leave a child alone, although I'm sure there are plenty of parents who do.  I believe, learning how to look out for your own safety is something that should start early.    I got a call from my son to tell me that my grand daughter had a great day at school today.  Well now this grandmother has more time for stitching