Friday, October 31, 2008

It's Friday!!!!!!

I love Fridays particularly when I have a couple of days home so that all that is left of the weekly cleaning is the dusting, mopping and cutting flowers to fill the vases.

Today is an extra special Friday as it is daisyboy11's 12th birthday - henceforth he shall be called daisyboy12! Where does that time go he was such a little thing and now he is almost in High School.

Today he has a free dress day then a swim in the college pool and a sausage sizzle for lunch (they are having a fundraising day). Then this afternoon I am picking him and four of his friends up for a birthday afternoon and two of them are sleeping over.

Daisygirl has an exciting day she is off to see some Koalas on a school excurison. And she has taken my camera so the post that I was going to do I will have to wait until Monday and you will have to put up with photos of some of my quilts.

daisyboy7 has swimming.

and daisyson17 has three weeks of school left after today (2 of those exam block where he only has one exam)

daisydad is coming to the end of a frantic work week.

So all in all my lot were quite cheerful as they tottered off this morning.

Hope they come home in happy moods too!!!!!

Yesterday I did get some sewing done and some cleaning and some gardening but I have more of all of the above to do today.

But only a little cleaning and a little gardening so hopefully I can do a lot of sewing.

I picked up some fabric from Spotlight last night to make pj pants (inspired by The Old Dairy ) I rarely buy farbic from Spotlight but I was pleasantly surprised by how much 100% cotton they had for such things.

I also picked some things for daisyboy12s
birthday. And I got some of the grocery shopping done for tonight's Halloween shindig (Halloween biscuits, pumpkin pie, "body part" pizzas)

I choof off to my little job tomorrow and then daisydads family will be here in the afternoon to catch up with those relatives from England. We are having a "picnic in the paddock" which is the easiest entertaining we do everyone brings chairs and rugs and a picnic for their family and away we go!! I think with everyone these days including the in laws and new great neices and nephews we number somewhere in the 70s.

I have been very remiss in welcoming some new commenters to daisy mountain so to anyone who has stumbled upon us - HI there!!!!

I also had an email yesterday from someone who thinks I am "amazing" - I am really not. A few times in my life people have told me I am intimidating and that was another expression this person used yesterday. I really don't feel like that is what I am projecting - and to make sure you all know I am just normal I have a special post on Monday.

It will show you the views of my garden that I deliberately didn't show in my photographs - the fabulous crop of weird grassey weeds in the garden under that gorgeous pink rose bush, the absolute mess in the alley way between the house and water tanks, the inside of my "potting" shed (which to date has NEVER been used for potting anything because it is full of "stuff"), and the real not-sitting-on-my-knees-so-I-can-look-over-the-top-of-the-blue-top-weed view of the dam from those chairs near the vegtable garden.

Unless of course I get to and cover the whole lot with mulch on the weekend and then take photos! LOL

But serioulsy we all try to present the best of our worlds in everything we do - but I don't want anyone to think I am some superhuman entity that gets everything done perfectly all the time every day all - it just isn't like that. One of my favourite quotes was from a woman who had come to Australia to run one of our big retail chains and she said....(not quoting this is just my rememberance of it)

I am a terrific Mother, a fabulous wife and and astute and clever business woman - just not all on the same day

Much of what I do show is probably more about how I view the world rather than the strict reality of it. I am a glass half full person - always have been - I choose to look over the weeds, so I can enjoy the view. I choose to ignore the potting shed so I can sit and have tea with my four year old or play poker with my 12 year old.

So Monday a warts and all view of my world anyone else game to do the same?????

oh and PS: Remember two weeks ago when i went off to clean my sewing room????? Well those photos will be here as well - still not clean folks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Someone asked me to do something today. Not something horrible or daunting just something that I don't need to be doing - something I chose not to do. She then congratulated me for having the courage to say "no".

The other thing that happened today was I opened my email and there was an enthusiastic and beautiful thank you from someone I only know through blogging.

That got me thinking about the last few months and the journey that bought me here.

It started one day in March when I got home from taking daisyson 7 to school and then proceeded to sit down and cry - that continued pretty much all day every day for three and half weeks. I went through the motions got the kids to school, cooked, tidied, went to meetings, sent emails, went for coffee with the girls. But to say I was feeling flat is a gross understatement. We all have days like this but I couldn't shake it.

Then one day I dropped into a friends house and proceeded to just blubber for what seemed like hours. I was still no closer to a reason or a solution but I felt much better.

After a while I picked myself up, dusted myself off and got on with things because that is what you do and I was fed up with feeling like this. I made some small changes - but really my life just went on.

Then the friend whose shoulder I used for blubbering collapsed one night she had an aneurism in her brain. My last contact with this friend was via text message three days before her collapse saying "can't do lunch catch up soon". A TEXT MESSAGE - 6 words.

As she lay recovering in intensive care - this is her story so I will not give any details except to say she is now fully recovered and well and beautiful and inspirational - I "resigned from my life". That is what I actuallly called it "resigning from my life."

I quit the markets I was organising once a month in our town to raise money for our church, I quit the three school committees that I was never officially on anyway I just worked on them, I quit the small business group and the committee for the fun day they organise, I quit picking up work from a place that always took months to pay me, I quit going places and doing things that I didn't want to do or didn't have to do - even if there wasn't anyone else to do it. I just resigned.

I just knew I needed to have less things in my diary and my head so I could just sit and breathe. Some of the things I was doing I was only doing because there wasn't anyone else to do them.

After I had resigned I looked around and my house was a mess, my garden was a mess, I was a mess, the only thing that had survived the turmoil of my life was my family. (resilient lot!).

I had a conversation with someone from my quilting group after I had done all these momentous things (and finally cleaned the house) and she said to me that it was a process - Maybe there was a 12 step program for people who are addicted to commitees - committees anonymous - to cure chronic volunteerism.

I really enjoyed waking up in the morning and knowing the only things I really had to do was look after my family. For a short while I avoided all situations where I might be asked to help with something or run something, but soon I realised that having more time was pretty good.

Through and the wonderful Bonnie, I found my way to Homespun Living, then to Down to Earth and Towards Sustainability.

I already had a small vegetable garden - was it so off the wall to think it could be bigger and supply us with more food?

I already made my own soap why not laundry liquid?

I already cooked from scratch - but had fallen into the habit of buying store bought biscuits for afternoon teas or lunches - why not cook more?

I already sewed, mended, created - why not make this a conscious life choice not just something I did because I did?

And therein lies the answer to my guilt post on Tuesday - MAKE THIS A LIFE CHOICE NOT JUST SOMETHING I DO BECAUSE I DO .

If along the way that life choice makes me happier than I have been for a long time, eating more home grown food than I ever have, finding more time to sew than I have ever allowed myself, falling in to bed exhausted at the end of each day, picking the charity events that I want to organise and be involved with, treading more lightly on the planet or choosing not to do something because it will take away from my family, my garden, my health or my time then that is just fine.

Just Fine.

I found a quote the other day on Little Jenny Wren's blog and I have put it on mine but in case you missed it it says:

"Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset." St Francis de Sales

So I challenge you all today to "do everything quietly and in a calm spirit"

Me? I am having a whole day sewing - have a great day.


The Flappers need a man........

Daisyboy4 got "baby wark warks" for his birthday last year, after the first two not doing so well we ended up with "the flappers" three gorgeous muscovy girls.

They are pure white and have lovely temperaments but the are seriously weird.......... They have been happily laying up a storm recently but today one of them has driven the other two out of the cage and has made a nest and is fiercly protecting her one egg - only problem is we don't have a drake! So unless the opportunistic roosters Gub gub and Lloyd have circumvented the natural order of things - she is being overly broody.

So does anyone out there have or know of a nice natured (and if he isn't the roosters and the flappers will pull him into line I am sure) muscovey or pekin drake that they would like to either giveaway or barter for something I have?????

I am on the northside of Brisbane and am happy to travel to get the right boy!!


Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Beautiful Tuesday

What a glorious day it is today.

I got my work sewing done and headed outside about 11 for a coffee and as I sat there I thought I should be doing this and this then I realised what I should be doing is sitting there enjoying the glorious day and maybe catching up on some hand sewing. So I finished a dresden plate block that I have had sitting there for ages. This and three other handpieced blocks are destined to be the new cushions for our bed.

I really enjoy handpiecing but I have this mindset that unless I am sitting in my sewing room with the machine humming that I am somehow wasting time.
Attack of the guilts:

In fact I feel guilty quite a lot, I feel guilty if I have enjoyed a day in the garden, or if I have achieved nothing more than finishing the washing and folding and ironing for the day. Some days I am great about it but other days - because I enjoy being at home so so much I feel like I should be being more productive.
Today it is probably mostly hormonal I get this tight fluttry feeling in my chest and I think I am wasting time I should be........................

So my question is: does anyone else feel like this from time to time, like when you work really hard one day and catch up with everything then the next day you play in the sewing room or the garden - do you find yourself thinking that is enough of a treat now it is time to get back to work??
Or do you justify why you are at home instead of in paid employment or why you work part time instead of full time.
I know in my heart and my head that my 7 children wouldn't be the people they are without having had me here every afternoon when they get home from school.
I know I don't need to justify my decision to not take part in the plasma tv, new car every two years, overseas trip every year ratrace. I know that making my own soap, laundry liquid (thanks Rhonda) , cooking form scratch, expanding the vegetable garden, mending, making do and creating are all the right way for me to live it makes me really happy - but then there is that nagging guilt that perhaps I shouldn't be enjoying my life so much.

Anyway would love to hear what you think, how you justify whether you justify and whether you feel guilty sometimes too.
Our Other Boys:
Thought I would introduce you to the two ratbag boys in our lives - they haven't mean bone in their body and probably not too many brains either but they are fun and they are ours so meet
daisydog buddy and daisydog dufus (not his real name just the one he responds to!!)


Monday, October 27, 2008

Monday Already??

Look who was waiting to greet me this morning when I got home from dropping daisyboy7 off to school (via assembly, coffee with a friend, grocery shopping and the post office).

For those who aren't familiar with our wildlife this is a carpet python about 6 feet in length and a boy ( you can tell by their tail - the ones with a skinny bit on the end are the boys - and the ones with the fat stubby tail end are the girls).

This railing is at our front door - needless to say daisyboy4 has remembered to shut the screen door everytime he has ventured outside today - thinking I should buy a plastic snake to keep this habit up!LOL

This one looks a bit skinny wish I was cool with snakes so I could let him in to eat the little critter that I spotted in the house last night.

Today was a day of getting organised I am out with daisyboy11at school tonight for a year 8 information evening, then tomorrow night for daisygirls school concert, then Wednesday at my patchworking group and Thursday at a parents only orientation day for prep for daisyboy4.
So today I cooked - I got dinner ready for tonight and decided to use up some eggs and make quiche for tomorrow night (taking one piece out for my lunch today). I resisted the temptation to buy frozen pastry sheets I always used to make my own pastry and then in the last few years I got lazy.
So with four cups of flour, 250g of butter, a food processer some water and five minutes I made enough pastry for 3 quiche and a piece left over to freeze for another day. Shortcrust pastry freezes really well. So then I decided to make another four cup batch - now I have frozen pastry!!
I used a combination of duck eggs ( the big white ones) and hen eggs for my quiche I love the flavour of the duck eggs and I try to use them for my baking if I have them because they make fruit cakes and tea breads a really great texture. Here is what they look like cracked - the duck eggs have very little white but lots of yolk.

The duck eggs are on the right and on the left are two normal size hen eggs.

I also made two batches of fridge biscuits for the freezer and two coffee cakes for the kids for afternoon teas.
Fridge Biscuits:
2 1/2 cups plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
155g butter or margarine
3/4 cup castor sugar
2 teaspoons finely grated orange rind
1 x 55g egg lightly beaten
1/3 cup currants extra sugar
Sift flour and baking powder together.
Cream butter, sugar and orange rind until light and fluffy.
Beat in egg.
Stir in currants and flour until the mix clings together.
Turn onto a lightly floured surface and form into a log shape with your hands (about 5cm in diameter). Wrap in wax paper and refrigerate for 2 hours then slice thinly and dust with extra sugar before baking in a moderate oven for 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
Makes about 48
I keep the wax paper wrapped logs in an airtight container in the freezer. You can keep them in there up to six months.
I make a few different flavours and I write on the paper with a laundry marker what they are.
Choc chip - omit orange rind and currants add 20g exra butter or some olive oil and a cup of choclate or carob chips.
Choc walnut - omit orange rind (and currants although I leave them in this one) and take out three tablespoons of flour and substitute with cocoa powder, then add extra 20 g butter or some olive oil and stir in a cup of walnuts ( or hazelnuts)
Orange pistachio (these make great teachers gifts for christmas) - use the recipe as is omitting currants and add a cup of pistachio nut kernels.
Cinnamon and coffee - omit orange peel and currants - and add 1 teaspoon cinnamon and three tablespoons of cold brewed coffee ( you may need to add a little bit more flour)
Off to get the rest of the Monday jobs done.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Roses and ramblings..............

I am so tired today. Daisyboy7 is home from school with a runny nose and a sore throat figured I would keep him home today, and try to get him to rest, that will give him three days to let it run its course.

Yesterday after my cleaning job I got home and sewed like a maniac to get that formal dress finished so the girl could come and get it yesterday afternoon.

Just got that done and was about to step in the shower when my sister phoned they have been away at a conference for a few days. On the way back to Toowoomba from the airport they thought they would drop in.

My house looked like a war zone - no seriously - I knew I had about 40minutes so I vaccuumed, mopped the floor, dusted, tidied, swiped over the bathrooms, did the breakfast washing up ( see Caroline you are not the only one!), tidied and cleaned the kitchen, made a salad for dinner, put a load of washing on ( the one that had been sitting on the laundry floor since 6am), and even managed to fill three vases with flowers !!!! Guess it wasn't as bad as I thought because in 45 minutes it was clean and tidy. Mind you the middle three kids came home off the school bus just in time to help out so I wasn't alone.

What a great thing an unexpected visitor can be, I woke this morning, and the house was clean, so I got the rest of the alterations done that are being collected today. Now I have one shirt to hem and the stuff to get labelled for the Arts and Crafts Show this weekend and I can finally do some fun sewing.

Today I am going to finish off some block of the month blocks, that I am so far behind with that today will be called "almost a year in day". And I am going to print off some dishcloths patterns that I want to get to this weekend including a really cute one with a rose.

There is the folding to finish and the ironing to do and dropping off the A&C show stuff this afternoon. And we need milk and toilet paper. But still I will be able to sew before I have to go.

One of the reasons my sister dropped in was to give me a quilt she has made for her granddaughter (she is 9 years older than me so my youngest son and her eldest grandchild are 3 weeks apart - weird)

My sister is my big sister with everything that title entails she is organised, generous, busy and I want to be just like her when I grow up. But last year she came to my patchwork groups quilting retreat and it it was the strangest thing - she was asking me for help.

So here I am at 45 and for the first time in my life I know more about something than my sister, well maybe that isn't strictly true but she defers to my opinion or asks my advice about it and that is a real honour for me.

She has done an amazing job on this quilt but is nervous about quilting it so I am doing it for her.
I posted photos of some of my roses I would have had more but I cut a whole bucket full this morning to give to a friend of mine for her b&b. I should have remembered to take a photo of the bucket before I gave it to her!!
Happy potteirng in the garden weekend

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Day four in a very busy week.

Last night I attended a talk given by Sister Pauline Coll. The topic wasn't a comfortable one - human trafficking and slavery - yes even here. Interesting, informative and a little sad at times.

It got me to thinking that one of the consequences of living simply must be that we will pass that on to our children or grandchildren - passing on the concept that growing your own food, making your own gifts, or recycling other people's cast offs is a responsible way to use limited resources, our time and our energy.

I hope the lesson my children take from our example is that - you don't have a right to have everything just because you want it - with the flow on that not everything is for sale - and therefore NOBODY is for sale - no matter what you want. I find the concept of harvesting organs from people who are deemed expendable just because you can pay for it reprehensible likewise harvesting human eggs and selling them to infertile couples. It is all those 70s fringe scifi horror flicks coming to life.

On those days when you are simply too tired to weed, clean, cook and mend remember that in doing so we pass on solid "work for it" values to all those who can see into our lives.

On November 18th a website will be launched with links to podcassts, videos, articles and things you can do to help stop slavery, it will be desinged to be a youth friendly site so your teenagers can access appropriate information with loads of safeguards. I will post the button link on this blog when I get it so you can check it out.

In the Garden..

It has been a week since I planted out my first seeds and NOTHING NADA ZIP - am I being impatient ?? Surely something should have come up by now!!! Planning to plant out some more this afternoon - so I am not giving up just yet.
But on a more positive note the tomatoes have survived the heavy rain and are ripening another day or two of sunshine and they will be ready to add to our salads.

I think someone needs to send me a formula for working out what when and how many of things I should be planting we eat a lot of salad leaves. After just two salads this week the plants are going to have to hurry up and grow. I am going to need a diary so I can remember to plant at least double or more next year to keep up with the demand.

But last night as I rushed (around after being out for the day) folding, hanging out washing, tidying up and getting dinner I sent daisygirl to the garden to get some more leaves for chicken burgers when she came back with bowl full she said to me "they just look so great mum" - funny how a few words and big smile make all the work so worthwhile. But of course I was rushing out the door and I missed the opportunity to relish that moment with her - instead I was half way to the presentation stuck at traffic lights before I really thought about how lovely it was.
SO I resolve....
not do too many outside things in a week, it takes a long time to get the chores done around here and have everything running smoothly and this week I am really out of whack the kids shopping trip Monday, Tuesday's breakfast, yesterday at the Craft Show, out last night, working today and then home to get a heap of work sewing done before 5pm. Tomorrow will be catching up day.

Next week we have a HUGE week of end of school year things with three schools and daycare this time of year can get really crazy. So I will remind myself to keep the days clear as we are out almost every night.

The Craft Show
It was a lovely day and I was able to spend it with a new friend, someone I hope will be in my life for a long time to come she is funny, intelligent,thoughtful, kind and most of all she doesn't feel the need to stop at every stall - just the ones she is interested in - which are the same ones I am intersted in. Bliss - a whole day of not having to feign interest in beading, dolls, scrapbooking, machine embroidery, photos on fabric, and those weird eggs etc.etc. I can appreciate all these crafts when someone else does them it is simply that they hold no fascination for me.

As far as purchases go I bought no fabric as per my promise to use what I have, I bought some rotary cutter blades (I have been resharpening the four I have for five years and one snapped the other day so I figured it was time).

A darling little chook bell that will serve no other purpose other than to make me smile.

Some Lion Brand cotton to make a dishcloth or three for a friend.

To be honest I bought this at Spotlight on the way home as nobody at the Show had it.

My other purchase was a template for Shaseiko quilting. It is a Japanese style of quilting usually done with thick thread in white.

It is very effective, I am not sure I will do a whole quilt in it but I am sure I will find some small project to use it on soon so I can have a practice.


Today I am trying to get home early this afternoon after this cleaning job is done and get some baking happening. The freezer is empty except for this chocolate cake of indeterminate age that I found at the very bottom - think the chooks will be having that. Think I will try the brownie recipe that The old Dairy made yesterday for afternoon teas, and some walnut and cranberry biscuits and get the fruit ready for the Christmas cake and pudding. Our ducks have decided to lay again and I love making the Christmas cake with duck eggs it just makes it so much better. SO I am going to do it now before they stop laying.

Here is the photo of the hedgerow roses on the shady side of the driveway The Old Dairy was asking if they grew in the shade. These are four years old, have never been watered or trimmed back and they grow under these two pine trees. The dogs have done a number on them by running through them whenever anyone walks past and I have transplanted the last two from a really shady spot just a week ago so they look a bit sparse. The bigger ones get about an hour to an hour and a half sun a day the two that I transplanted have been in almost full shade.
Have a wonderful porductive day.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Sit a while................

At the pink Breakfast today they had an auction with all proceeds going to Breast Cancer Research - bear with me that is my justification for spending - I bought lot 7 - A garden bench.

That got me thinking on the way home about where I sit in the garden at various times of the day and year.

So here is a tour of my garden via the places I like to sit .............

My little white table and chairs (that are now my new photo id on the blog) came to me via a playgroup mum who was getting rid of them for the princely sum of $40. They sit in the little grassed area in front of our verandah. I sit here on my own in the morning at 5am with a cup of tea and my diary working out where,who,how and how much for the day, and waiting for daisydad to come home from his early run.

Then daisyboy4 and I sit here at 10ish and have morning tea as it is still in the shade of gum tree then.

When we first moved here the gardens were awful. The one at the front behind the white table and chairs was a metre wide strip in front of the verandah with a dozen scrappy looking native shrubs that were all dead at the bottom and stringy at the top. Apart from that, a flame tree planted 80cm from the side of the house and eight coffee trees planted in the shade on top of the biocycle unit there was nothing. So I set about building and planning garden beds to soften and enfold the lawn rather than edge it. We had a lot of shade from the pine trees, our gorgeous gum and various other tall trees so the beds were built around them and I edged them all in granite.
I moved all those rocks myself and hand selected each one for its spot - amongst them I put four "sitting" rocks the one above is near the kids sandpit and is a great place to sit and have a chat to daisyboy4 and 7 while they play. The other three are a wonderful place to rest while I weed or mulch, or for one of the daisies to perch on and tell me about their lives while I work.

This little white table and chairs I bought from the dump treasure sale for $10 - it is so adorable I love it I had it powder coated white and it sits through the archway at the back of the garden. You can just see the fence post for the house yard in the background and beyond that is the gully that leads to the dam. The orchid in the pot was my mothers she has had it for as long as I can remember - it is far too shady here for it so it doesn't flower much but sometimes it surprises me.

So this is where I sit when I need an early afternoon pre pick up cup of tea or for afternoon tea with kids when they get home from school. It is also lovely for a late afternoon glass of wine and chat with daisydad. This photo was taken at 3.20pm today.

Here is one you would have seen before this white set was my mothers and it now sits behind the house near the vegetables garden adn voerlooking our dam. We sit here and have a drink in the afternoons, or have lunch with the kids as it is in shade these days from about 2.30pm.

And here is the view from those chairs. Across the dam and into the back paddock. I cannot tell you how much of a difference to the feel of this property was made by putting in this dam. We swim in it all summer long as you can see there are shady bits that get really cold and sunny bits that are really warm. It is about 3 m deep in the middle when it is full at the moment it is half full when it is full it is half a metre short of the base of the gum tree at the far end.

So that is a quick tour of the house yard, I will take some photos next week of the orchard paddock and the back paddock.
Not sure where the little garden bench (did you see the bird on it??) will live yet but I will move it around until I find the perfect place.

And now it has gotten very dark very quickly and I can hear thunder rumbling through the saddle of the mountain so it is time to get off the computer and start moving some of this furniture away from windows.

Off to the Stitches and Craft Show tomorrow.

Enjoy your day hope you get some rain and no damage.


Pink Breakfast...........

Rushing this morning getting kids off to school and heading off for a Pink Breakfast for Breast Cancer at the local nursery/coffee shop.

I harvested a whole bowl full of wonderful fresh salad leaves for dinner last night and I pulled up a beetroot and took off an eggplant - probably the smallest eggplant I have ever seen - living proof people that you shouldn't grow the same thing in the same spot two years running. This bush came up of its own accord and I left it there.

It tasted great just sliced and grilled on the BBQ.

When I hung the washing out this morning I was looking at the nasturtiums in the garden bed next to the line and I found this gorgeous little beauty. I love the dark red ones but they don't seem to grow as well in my garden as the orange, yellow and these "apricot" ones.

I planted the luffas in the garden yesterday under my new trellis. None of the seeds I planted last week are up yet, I don't think I am very good at this seed thing but I have a few more so I will give them another go this week.
I have moved some of my tyres into a light filled but shadier spot behind the water tank in the hope that I will be able to keep growing lettuce longer into the season.
My pumpkins and rockmelon vines are growing well in their bathtubs now I just have to hope that over the next week they spill over the edge and trail downhill instead of back through the fence!! I am trying to utilize the sunny east facing bank of the dam that is currently populated by weeds and some weird grasses. I have mowed it down and planted more nasturtiums and I am hoping that between them and the pumpkin and rockmelons they cover the bank.
I keep forgetting I wanted to buy some sweet potatoes to pop in a few bare spots in the garden beds - can I grow them from sprouted ones??? We have a great organic shop in town and I can buy some organic ones there maybe I will try that.
Other than the garden which seems to be my main focus as soon as the sun comes up these days, I have a heap of sewing to do later today. And then usual round of cleaning, washing, folding and cooking.
When we went to the library yesterday I got myself a book on tape to listen to while I sew. I usually listen to music (or one of daisyboy4s videos) but after I read on someone's blog that this is what they do when they iron I thought what a great idea!!!
So I am off to find something other than yard clothes to wear to this breakfast this morning and if my day goes as I think it might (or rather hope it might) there will be clean sewing room photos tomorrow!!!
Please note I have deleted my rant. After spending a wonderful few hours with some dear friends and some new ones, raising $3000 for breast cancer research - and coming home with an auction item myself (check out tomorrows post for details and photos) - I don't think anyone needs to put up with my views on the media. I promise I will keep them all to myself from now on - this blog will be peace and tranquility and the fun chaos that is my everyday.
Have a wonderful day.

Monday, October 20, 2008

New look!!

I am so excited I finally worked out how to change the look of the blog. So expect a different one every now and again until I find the one that screams ME. I really like this one though. The one on the weekend was a bit too bright.

In the yard...................
Yesterday was spent mulching more gardens, mowing, planting out five Hedgerow roses in pink....I get these from Diggers at first I wasn't convinced they would grow in Qld but after putting in 10 (and only losing 1) 4 years ago I am a convert. I didn't water them at all they have survived on what nature provided (not much considering we have been in drought since I planted them) and look at them they do need the sun though, the ones on the other side of the drive are in the shade of a pine tree and they aren't as lush. They only flower once a year but they are so beautiful and form a great soft hedge.

Then I decided I am putting more vegetable gardens in the orchard paddock and we are going to take back the weeping paperbarks we bought for the front area and exchange them for some fruit trees perhaps avocados. And I finally got my head around where I am going to build the trellises for the cane berries.

And we got a trellis up for the luffas so planting them out today.

Up until this point the garden has been largely my baby, daisydad hasn't been that interested, but that is unfair he has been studying a law degree by distance ed for the last 8 years so every weekend has been full of study, assignments and the work he has to do for his real job. But now that his study if finished he has been out helping me more and yesterday's decisions were "us" not me. So it was a turning point I suppose.
Busy Sunday....................

We usually have a cooked breakfast on Sunday after Church but this week we got into the garden first then had a late brunch, then back out to the yard to get some more done. We did some weeding and then had a swim in the dam with the daisies, and then played gin and go fish with the kids for a while we even got to sneak away and do a bit of grocery shopping on our own and pop in to the local pub for a quick drink on the way home. In a busy full household it is these little moments that help to remind you that one day there will be just us.

That bedroom.............

Daisygirl13 sorted out the boys bedroom on Saturday it looks great apart from the fact I really wanted the drawers painted before the clothes went in them but never mind we can do that in a few weeks when everyone is home on holidays. For now the floor is empty of clothes and everything looks neat and tidy - a room to think and plan in at last.

Kids are home.................

So we are off to the library and then we need to buy daisyboy7 a pair of goggles for school swimming. So while we have to be out of our valley and over at the shopping centre we will get some meat to put in the freezer. Then home again to drop the kids here while I choof off to another job interview then back here to pick them up and off to the nursery to swap those trees over and pick up a punnet of lettuce (no forgot to plant out lettuce seeds!!!!) and a play in the park in the village with a coffee for mum and a walk to the local take away for a 50c packet of lollies for the daisies. And then home to plant lettuce and luffas!!!
Enjoy your day whatever you are doing and whatever surprises it may bring.
PS: My potatoes are up!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! But my cucumber have gone not died not shrivelled just gone...... possums??

Friday, October 17, 2008

New for old

Had to jump on quickly to tell you of my purchase.

After being very inspired by The Old Dairy and mulching for a few hours, I ventured upstairs to tackle the little boys bedroom (again inspiration well perhaps motivation might be a better word thanks to The Old Dairy).

About 18 months ago I splurged at Ikea and bought three chests of drawers, a wardrobe and a loft bed (for daisyson17). Well the loft bed has survived but the chests of drawers have all had it and the cupboard went to the tip ages ago. So I popped daisyboy4 in the car (yes mulch in the hair and all) and headed off to the "local" Lifeline store where I purchased two dressing tables with solid wooden drawers for $75.

I am so cross with myself for spending all that money on furniture which I probably knew deep down wouldn't last in a little boys bedroom. But I won't be making that mistake again.

After convincing the men at the store that I really did know what I was talking about and assuring them that of course they would fit in the car - and without resorting to lecturing them on the virtures of a car and a mother that can pack away four kids , one teenager, two adults and enough camping gear for a two week trip to Townsville - without a roofrack. We headed home via the shop for ice cream and the dump (see below).

One has mismatched handles and I left the mirror from it at the "trash n treasure" shed at our dump on the way home. But the other one is quite small and boyish and I have enough drawers and bits from the two remaining Ikea jobs to make one good chest for daisyboy4's clothes (which currently reside in baskets on an old painted bookcase.)

So while I am at work the "family" can give them a coat of paint and some new handles (daisyson17 works in a hardware store on the weekends so we get good discount) and on Sunday I can reinvent the bedroom from hell. At the moment it is just the clothes that end up all over the place because the drawers fall out or won't close properly.

In the Garden: we almost have a flower on our first Agapanthus I love them they just scream SUMMER IS HERE!!!!

And I found a strawberry plant in the wheelbarrow that I have planted out with Silverbeet! Not sure where it came from and it wasn't there the other day.

The Mulching is done out the front, daisydad and some of the younger daisies will do the vegetable garden while I am at work.

The sewing room didn't get touched but I really enjoyed my day in the garden and I think it cleared my head a little although I had a splitting headache by the time I got into the shower last night.

It is a gorgeous day today - it is a shame I am here at work.

Have a restful Sunday my friends.


A day of finishes!!

I actually woke up yesterday with the head cold that my kids have had for the last few weeks. It seems every year I end up getting a head cold just as the weather is starting to warm up and chase the last cool mornings of winter away.
Maybe it is my body's way of clearing out winter!!

So even though I was feeling miserable I got into the sewing room and this is what I managed to finish.
Two lunch packs and two tea cosies for the Arts and Crafts Show and.....

After starting at 9am with this..........................

I ended up binding this at 7.30pm...................................

It is a baby quilt for a friend of one of my sons. he asked me to make it for them, I had been wanting to try the Braid pattern and I had some strips cut ready to sew, so I used this for the centre. The heart on the front at the top has the little girl's name and date of birth embroidered on it (by machine) and I added the extra fabric hearts on the back to give an interesting quilted heart pattern over the front.

I am really pleased with my day of sewing and along the way I emptied the bins, picked up pins and filed some stuff away in my sewing room so by this afternoon I should be able to post a clean work room photo.

We had 21mm in the storm the other night and it drizzled yesterday as well so I haven't needed to go into the vegetable garden to water, but later today when I feel a little brighter daisyboy4 and I will go and pick some flowers for the house and do some weeding and tidying. ( and now that I have read The Old Dairy post - MULCHING)

Off to work again tomorrow - hope you all have a wonderful weekend and for those of you in Qld a great pupil free day Monday.


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A play day...........and a mystery

Today I am hiding.

Yesterday was a busy and productive day so today I am free to play!!!!!!

And today I purposely kept the day free of any appointments, clients, or "have tos" - so what am I going to do with my free time??????

sew sew sew and then clean the sewing room, I was going to do it the other way around because I am always so much more productive and inspired in a clean work room but I haven't really been near the machine for "fun" for weeks. Here are the "before" shots

Sewing for me is fun so much so that I feel guilty sometimes just sitting there all day making things but it is one of the real joys of my life. As you can see cleaning up after I have been sewing isn't so much of a joy!!LOL

And as I am writing this I remembered that I am putting together some items for the Arts and crafts show at our local school, I have done it for the last few years and it is amazing how much I sell, the school keeps a percentage and the rest I get which is really great this close to Christmas.
So it won't just be sewing for fun I have a few teacosies to make and some appliqued teatowels and some lunch packs and maybe another hobby horse or two.

Have a wonderful day -take some time to play and think of me!!!!


PS: Does anyone know what this flower is it is a big caney kind of bush that I planted I got it cheap from some nursery about three years ago but it didn't have a tag. Please don't tell me it is a declared pest or something I just love it and if I had known how lovely it would be once it grew I would have bought more of them.