Monday, March 28, 2011

Resuming Normal Transmission

So, after a weekend of wonderful music and late nights, life resumes it's usual rhythm.........
The visitors have departed, so I plugged the machine in and started on a Blanket Bunny, but I was thinking about a little needle book with frayed edges and wonky lines

The bunny just needs sewing together and it's done, not another UFO.............

"Let us dance in the sun, wearing wild flowers in out hair" Susan Polis Shutz.

A perfect quote for the weekend just gone.

There was sunshine and much dancing, no wonder my feet are sore.......

Front and back.

A piece of recycled blanket makes a wonderful blank canvas ready for some stitching.

A couple of pieces of felt, in which to keep your embroidery needles.

I was hoping I had some hot pink felt, but have used it all, still.............

There was another surprise parcel in the post today.

After 3 trips to check the letter box the mail finally arrived and there was a parcel from the U.K.

Yippee, I know what it is, or at least I think I do.......

Looky, looky isn't he just the cutest gnome you have ever seen?

Love those sparkly snow flakes and he's holding a lamp with gleaming beads and thread lighting the way.
" Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home" ain't that the truth

Do you recognise the artist behind this wonderful work?

It's Karen over at Mimi Love, head over and pay her a visit, she's one clever lady and has an etsy shop chock full of wonderful creations.

Also travelling in bubble wrapped comfort with Mr. Gnome was one of Karen's cockney sparrows.

All the teeny tiny stitches Karen embroiders on her pillows make wonderful pictures.

"allo me old china" a bit of rhyming slang, just sets him off .

Thanks Karen, I love them both, they make me smile.

Still there was more.

A beautiful card with one of her stitchy paintings on it.

Graceful doves, painted and stitched.

If you haven't visited her blog, head on over there. I guarantee she will have you in stitches.

Oooh, just realised the pun , not intended, but very true.........

Come Winter this is where Mr. Gnome will reside. Hanging on my dresser, lighting the way with his little lamp and making me smile.

No. 1 son is a little jealous of Mr. Gnomes beard, hehehe......
He thinks it's a very 'manly beard'.

Mr Gnome will be joined by the lovely Red Robin I purchased from Mimi Love last year.

Till then my cheeky Cockney Sparrow will be hanging around, at least this one won't be stealing the wheat out in the chook run.

One final pic below.
Who would've thought inside an unassuming taped, cardboard box, I would find so much creativity.........

Well, the mornings are certainly getting cooler and there is now a heavy dew on the grass.
Need to wear boots outside instead of the good old flip flops.

The trees are putting on some lovely colour and I was very tempted to light the wood stove last week when it was raining.......... but I resisted.

We've had an extremely busy weekend with he local folk festival taking place. I shall post about it later in the week, when I have the energy and have caught up on some sleep.

Shall leave you with a pic of No. 1 and Tigger.

If you're lying down on the couch then Tig thinks you are fair game for a cuddle.........

I think Rich will be doing a bit of this over the next day or two, he's worn out as well.

He played some great gigs over the weekend. Always special playing in front of a home crowd, no travelling for a start.......

As you can see there's a long way to go before Rich has a beard to rival Mr. Gnomes.....

Thankyou all for popping by for a visit and for commenting on posts.
It' always lovely to hear from you and get some feedback.

Welcome, to any new followers, promise I won't lead you up the garden path.........

Well, I hope you all had a great weekend and enjoyed some fine weather and time to spend with family or do something creative.

Till next time, take care,

Claire X

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Inspiration Comes In Many Different Ways

Last week the postie left a card in the letter box telling me they had a parcel which was TOO LARGE to leave and I would have to go into town to collect it............

It had me wondering who, what, why.

When I picked it up I was even more intrigued, it was large, soft and squishy and I couldn't wait to unwrap it.

The lovely Sandra from Sam's Sewing Room had very thoughtfully put together a parcel of woollen fabric which she bought at a 'garage sale' held by some of her crafting friends.
She said as soon as she saw it, she thought of me.............

I was thrilled ad she also included a copy of Get Creative magazine which had some wonderful projects in it, one of which I was in the process of starting, so plenty of ideas to choose from .
As you can see there is quite an assortment of colours and my head was spinning with ideas as I unwrapped the paper.

Anyway, I really haven't had time to do much sewing recently, but just had to have my 'fix' today. So plugged in the machine and when I should've been cleaning bathrooms, ironing and vacuuming I made .............
........... this bunny.
Well, it's only half made, but I couldn't wait to post a pic.

Did you know "Bunny hugs are best"? Just ask a bunny.........

I love the combination of the lilac wool and green fabric. The fabric under the bunny will be for the back and I will add some detail to it.

It's a little bit different for me, colour wise. But so far I am happy with how it is turning out.

There will no doubt be teacosies and more softies made in the coming weeks. Plus more projects as the ideas evolve.

Thankyou so much Sandra for your thoughtfulness.
As Sandra said in an email one of the best things about blogging is making new friendships and I totally agree.
Hop (sorry about the pun) on over to her blog she's been crocheting up a storm recently and has some cute little owls about the place too.
You know how it is when inspiration strikes?

You have to write it down there and then.............

No1 son was mowing the 'lawn' when he pulled up by the kitchen door and motioned to me that he wanted to write something down. I knew exactly what he needed it for.

I duly took out a pen and some paper and he sat there for a minute, engine running and wrote down some song lyrics.

Had to smile to myself, wondering what on earth they would be. What would you think of when mowing the lawn? All sorts of things apparently.

Shall keep you updated on the song as he has already written the first verse and the melody.
So far so good.
A quick look at what's happening outside in the garden.

The purple beans are ready for picking and the basil plant will soon be made into pesto. There are some lettuces nestled in amongst the straw, doing very nicely and as you can see the Zinnias are still flowering their heads off.

A bit of colour still happening in the shrubbery, beautiful bright Nerines, probably on their last legs. The roses are still flowering and the Dahlias have put on a lovely Autumn display.

Still plenty to pick and bring inside.

The Hoodie hanging on the line, belongs to my son. I purposely put it in the pick as it was made by Rich's mate Luke.
Luke did a brilliant job and has lined the hood with some recycled woollen fabric. He used an overlocker, made buttonholes and put ribbing on the sleeves.
It's quite long, covering his butt, apparently that's how snowboarders like them and Luke is a snowboarder. At the moment he's working at a ski resort in Canada and making some extra cash on the side whipping these beauties up.
Not bad for a 19 y.o. fella.

As you can see from the photo it's a rather overcast day here and I am loving it. Have put on the trakkies (yes, I admit I wear them) and the slippers and it's nice and cosy inside.
Shall have to get ready for work soon...........

It's been a while since I last posted, have been tidying up as we are having a couple of house guests this weekend for the local Folk Festival. So that means tidying up the spare room and finding the bed for them to sleep in, hehehe.........

No. 1 and I also made a quick trip to Melbourne last week to see the Doobies Brothers in concert.
I love their music and wasn't going to miss this opportunity. hubby wasn't interested so rich and I headed off. We had a lovely time, stayed with friends who also came to the concert.
Had breakfast out on Saturday morning, visited the Rose St. market in Fitzroy loads of clever, creative people there.

Best dash and see if I can get a few jobs done before I head off to work..........

Thankyou one and all for the lovely comments on my last post and welcome to new followers nice to hear from you all and meet new bloggers.

I hope you week is going well and have managed to squeeze in some creativity into your week,

Till next time, take care,

Claire X

Monday, March 14, 2011

Monday, Monday...............

Now don't be fooled by his sweet demeanour.
You know the old saying:-

It's not the size of the dog in the fight ,
It's the size of the fight in the dog.

Wee Jock may be a cutie but he's a canny wee Scot (Westie actually!)

He's been inspired by Pene over at Scrap my Midlife Crises. She has some cute little Westies made using a die cutter and I couldn't resist making some using the tartan sent to me by Anne at Nana Go Go

Apart from 'playing' there's also been some time out with hubby and No.1 son.
It doesn't happen very often these days as they are often away on weekends travelling to music gigs.
So when it does happen, it's very special and time to be relished.
I decided we should head up the Kiewa Valley and have lunch at Ceccanti Winery.

Off the beaten track Ceccanti is a small family run winery.
They serve Tuscan food and we sat at an outside table enjoying the balmy weather and lovely breeze.
Above is the view from where we were sitting.

Peaceful and relaxing.

Time to be savoured.

Cheers, pure rain water...........

We're teatotallers.

But we enjoy good food and this antipasti platter was as delicious as it looked.

Made for two but shared by three it didn't leave quite enough room for the next course...........

Ok, so now you can put a face to the writer of these ramblings.

It's me on the right .........

Spaghetti Carbonara, like no other.
No 1 and I couldn't resist a bowl of pasta while hubby had a warm chicken salad.

The pasta was unbelievably delicious.
Not at all creamy as I would have expected and not sure what the meat was, prosciutto or parma ham!
It was the best Carbonara I have ever had.
Unfortunately, it was just a little on the large size.
No 1 just managed to finish his and then promptly announced he was sinking into a "Carbonara Coma"
You know that feeling you get just after you have lunch and all you want to do is have a siesta......
Hubby finished off the last few mouthfuls of my meal.

Sadly, the dessert menu which we always read before the mains, (don't you?) wasn't needed.
After looking at the photo of hubby and myself perhaps it's just as well........

Although after lunch we headed up the valley to Mt. Beauty where we had a lovely coffee at the bakery and couldn't resist sharing a Vanilla Slice.
The perfect sweet treat to finish off a lovely outing.

Well, it's back to the usual routine tomorrow with work.

I'm not going to complain at having to be up at 5.15am
I'm going to be thankful and count my many blessings.

Life goes on despite the devastation taking place across the other side of the world.
It's hard to comprehend and take it all in.

Thankyou for taking time to stop and read my ramblings and for leaving a comment.

Till next time, take care of yourselves and those you love,

Claire X

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Snippets from my Saturday...............

Saturday at last and a chance to 'play'.

Here's a few snippets and snaps of what's been taking place in the Sweet Birdy Love household.

The tartan swatches Nana go go sent have been snipped into already.
It really had to be more egg cosies.

I mean to say
chooks + tartan = McChooks

or McChickens depends where you live, hehe........

I have some more ideas swirling around in my head.
Little things that make me smile, will share with you over the coming week.

After a break of a few days from the crochet rug I am back into it but perhaps in a manner slightly more reserved...........
My enthusiasm for this project aggravated an old RSI type of injury, ouch.
Now in case you can't see the difference in the above pic and one from a few posts ago........
Here 'tis and it's big enough to throw over my knees.

I have invested in a wrist bracey thing and it feels good having it on.
Hopefully, it will mean I can crochet away to my hearts content without the 'ouch' factor kicking in later on.

This week has been warmer than the last couple. Maybe Summer was trying to redeem itself......
Yesterday, saw a brief shower of rain and the most spectacular rainbow across the valley.
If you click on the pic you can see the Maples changing colour.
It has been a little more humid too, which is not particularly pleasant, but today is lovely and mild.
Showers are threatening, but at least the breeze is keeping the humidity at bay.

Now where is the end of that rainbow?
Oh, right at my Crabapple tree, how exciting is that?
Better go and check for that pot of gold..........

Nope out of luck, all I could find were weeds.

There's also been a spot of cooking taking place.
Tomatoes with Basil to put in the freezer and use in Winter when we have brunch.
Bacon and eggs with a taste of Summer on the side, yummo.

Hubby has been a great help peeling and cutting up peaches.

They are lovely and sweet and quite a size due to the good season.
Hmmm, peach cobbler in Winter, sounds good to me.

My kitchen feels a little like the above.

Wouldn't I love a beaut fire place like that.

I do have a wood stove and as the wood shed is full to almost overflowing with wood, I shall be firing up the stove as soon as it's cool enough.

Not sure if my pies and cakes will look like those above but I'll give it a try.
Wouldn't mind that patchwork rug either........
Check out that huuuuuge dresser full of wonderful produce.

I know, I know .........

It only happens in the world of Brambly Hedge but I would love to live in a house like that.

If you haven't yet figured it out, I am a huge fan of Brambly Hedge.
Jill Barklem is a little like a modern day Beatrix Potter, in my mind.

Beautiful drawings and what an imagination.........

After the peaches there's apples to cook.

Next week there will be more apples ripening plus pears.

It doesn't get any better than eating your own home grown produce.

No 1 son has been checking his didge stand in preparation for Carnivale in Wodonga tonight.
A community celebration of music, food, workshops etc.
It's put on by the Wodonga council and is free.
It's a fun night with a wearable art competition and I have to say the ladies who enter this comp. are seriously creative with their outfits.
Art activities for the kids, a parade and 3 different stages with various musical acts, dancers etc.
Will be a great evening of entertainment, if only this rain would clear up and go somewhere else.
And of course Tig has been doing what he's best at.......

Need I say more?
So, this has been a few snippets out of my Saturday.
I hope your Saturday has been an enjoyable one too

Thankyou for visiting, it's always nice to hear what you have been and are up to.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend and till next time take care,

Claire X

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Spreading the Blog Love

I recently participated in a Valentines swap organised by Jackie at Sew Special Bears.

I was paired up with the lovely Anne from Nana Gogo.

Earlier this week I found this parcel in the letterbox.

My heart skipped a little beat when I saw the Royal Mail sticker

Don't you love getting parcels in the mail, specially ones from overseas?

Love the roses wrapping paper and that sweet little crocheted flower.

That's a great idea using little flowers to decorate parcels.......

There were parcels galore, I could see tartan peeking through the tissue paper, yippee.....

Anne, had sent me a lovely Scottish calendar which was quite funny as I usually buy a UK calendar each year but had been too slow off the mark and settled for one with nature photos.

There was fridge magnet, some lovely rose guest soap, yummy heart shaped chocolates, sweets which No. 1 snaffled before I could take a photo and there's more..........

Tartan, yeeeeeees..........
Must be my Scottish background, I love the stuff.

Oh, ideas are already swirling around in my head as to how I will use it.

I have to say that I have already cut into and used some and I'm loving it.

Wrapped up in that lovely rose paper, was this fab cushion cover, with a Scottish thistle Anne appliqued on it.
I had the perfect size cushion insert in the cupboard and then found just the spot for it it the snug.
On the wall above the couch is a print of some Highland cows by a loch in a glen, 'jus perfick'............

Now it feels like I have a little corner of Scotland in my home...........

Anne, really did spoil me, have a look at this gorgeous hand embroidered table runner she sent me.

It now resides on the table in the entry, I love it.

A closeup of the embroidery, just gorgeous

Just click on the photo if you want to see the embroidery in detail.

This swap has been so much fun and if you have never participated in one why don't you give one a go.
It's a great way to 'meet' new bloggers.


Well, as we near the end of another week (they are just flying by....) I hope it's been a good one for you.
I hope that you have found something exciting in the mail, apart from the usual bills and junk mail.
Thanks for dropping by and sharing the blog love with your comments.
Love hearing from you all,

Till next time, take care,

Claire X

Monday, March 7, 2011

Autumns' Bounty

Hello and welcome to a new week.
I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.

We had beautiful Autumn weather over the weekend.
Cool mornings and lovely days, although at this time of year the DES (Dept. of Environment and Sustainability) start their controlled fuel reduction burns.
These burn offs are carried out to get rid of undergrowth and reduce the intensity of bushfires.
After all the rain we've had and the growth that's taken place, whilst we may not like the smoke etc. it needs to be done.
I had plans to plug the machine in and spend Saturday sewing as my boys were away for the day, so no distractions.............
I had several ideas for various projects but when push came to shove, I couldn't find my creative mojo despite turning the house upside down looking for it..........

Perhaps it was the thought that I really should be outside on such a beautiful day and working in the garden or cleaning out the chook house.......

Anyway, I decided to whip up a few egg cosies.
Quick, easy, colourful and cute.

I was hoping the creative vibe might return if I just started on something, but no it wasn't to be .
Not to worry, I finished these three and headed outside to do the jobs I had been putting off.....

My collection of 'spotty dotty' chooks........

I wonder what colour their egg shells are?

Should've guessed.

Wouldn't you be surprised to find one of these eggs in a laying box?..........

I've noticed quite a few crocheted flower scarves in blogland recently.
I've seen some beautiful examples and was reminded of one I made some years ago.

Obviously, I had found a pattern for a crocheted flower and gone berserk whipping up dozens of them............ as I do!

Somewhere along the way I decided to sew them together and make a scarf.
I thought it was a good idea at the time......
Took me ages to sew them together, but loved the end result.
Anyway, for some reason I never wore it and put it back in the draw and there it remains.
That was 4 years ago, does that make me a trendsetter but I didn't know it at the time?

Love pink and green, throw in a bit of red too, mmm.....

The garden, is still yielding plenty of fruit and veg.
Homegrown tomatoes are just the best.
I love green beans too..............
I remember Summer dinners when I was a child.
We would be sitting around the table in a hot, little kitchen.
Mum would have the wood stove going to cook our meal and we would be having meat and 3 veg. as you did in those days.
There would be homegrown beans on the plate and as a 5 y.o. I couldn't find anything appealing about them.
Fast forward ahem!........years and I love homegrown green beans with my dinner.
You can't beat them.
I could eat just a bowl full for a meal, delicious....
The late peaches are now ripening and beautifully sweet and tasty as are the last of the blood plums.............

Beautiful Dahlias putting on a few blooms before Winter.

I love the randomness of the white in amongst them.
Each bud is like a surprise waiting to bloom.

Will it be a single or bicoloured flower?

As Saturday was such a lovely day, I thought it right that I should have a picnic in the back orchard.
I think I was really putting off the job of cleaning out the chook house......

The 'girls' were having their own little picnic there, but obviously thought I had brought out some treats for them too...........

No nothing left, it's all gone.
I did get the chook house cleaned out, fresh straw in the nesting boxes.......
It looked a treat afterwards and got the tick of approval from the girls.

Well,that's a little of what I got up to on the weekend.

Thanks for stopping by to read my ramblings.
Thanks to those who leave a comment, it's always lovely reading them, discovering new blogs and finding out which part of the globe you hale from.

The week ahead is full of adventure yet to be had. Hopefully I will find my creative mojo somewhere.
I am still working away at my first crocheted rug, which is growing little by little.
I am taking it a little easier as I have developed a sore wrist.
Anyone else find this happens and what do you do for it?

We are on the countdown to the Yackandandah Folk Festival, which takes place in 3 weeks time
A weekend of music and fun and something we all look forward to, here in the Sweet Birdy Love household.

I hope whatever your week brings you enjoy it and have something to look forward to.

Till next time, take care.

Claire X