Sunday, May 31, 2009

Eye Spy - A morning ritual

Mornings can vary so much at our place. Having 2 small people who now mostly sleep through each night has made mornings a much more pleasant affair (and something I'm savouring at the moment). Adelaide is usually the first to wake and being in a cot, she usually calls out for someone to come get her (thankfully that is usually Tim at the moment!). She comes in for a snuggle in our bed, and the very occasional snooze before the footsteps of Max can be heard coming down the hall.

Max has inherited my morning habits of wanting to stay in bed for a snuggle as long as possible. We often send Addie out to turn the heater on now the mornings are so cold. It is a gas heater so only needs the flick of a switch to get the 'fire' started.

It is a cosy looking fireplace that is safe-to-touch for the small people in the house.

From here on in the morning descends into typical breakfast chaos that is filled with strange food requests, occasional eating, lots of smearing (usually weatbix), glances at the paper (that's all you need when it's the Sunday Tasmanian...straight to Peter Cundall's gardening column), pots of tea, bottles of our fruit, jars of homemade jam, occasionally freshly bake bread, all accompanied by lots of chatter and so begins another day!

More morning rituals over here.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Eye Spy theme

Cindy asked me to come up with this weeks eye spy theme, after very little thought (to be honest) I came up with......

Eye spy 'a morning ritual'

Considering our last few mornings have been a squishy affair with 2 kids, 2 adults and a fairly large belly bump jostling for space in our bed I'm looking forward to perhaps getting a glimpse of some calm breakfast scenes with flowers & papers on the table and not a smeared weetbix in site (a girl can dream!)

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Creative Space - not recommended in front of the TV

The baby doll production continues.....

I've managed to cut Max's doll out but haven't started sewing him yet.

I was feeling like things were moving in the right direction with Adelaide's doll when I sat down to hand-stitch the legs on last night. I thought I'd have a break from the kitchen table & do it while watching TV......only to discover when I held baby doll up that I had just stitched the legs on back to front!

Despite feeling like throwing the monkey-faced-crazy-legged creation in the corner and going to bed to finally get the rather ordinary day over with I persisted, unpicked & re-stitched. Baby doll is now just a monkey-faced creation & I'm going to head into town now & buy some felt to see if a baby will emerge with the addition of eyes and mouth.

Go and see the talented Kirsty for a peek into others creative spaces.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Baby doll?

Ever since Addie lost her "babydoll" last Christmas she has had a series of replacement dolls that have sort of filled the gap, to varying degrees. With a new baby due in 5 weeks (WHAT!!!!) I realised I needed to get going if I really wanted to make Max & Addie a new baby doll each (dolls they can change nappies, feed, carry & dress while I do the same with the real baby....that's the plan anyway). My experience with doll making or softy creation is very limited indeed.

I decided (with a lot of encouragement from 2 very keen helpers) to use this pattern....

While buying the calico Max decided his baby should be brown - his favourite colour at the moment. We dyed some of the calico using tea, it's not really brown but he seems satisfied with the colour. It started off well enough....

Although I had not realised quite how unceremonious sewing softies can be....

Nor how much hand sewing would be involved....

The problem now is my baby doll looks more like a monkey.......

Here's hoping that hair & facial features redeem this project. Tim's mum is in charge of the knitting so at least the little monkey will have some winter clothes to wear.

Perhaps I should have just jumped straight to the dolls I really wanted to make from this book...

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Eye Spy - My Karaoke Masterpiece

When I saw this weeks theme, from Erin, I was a bit worried, I wish I sang more, or at least more confidently. While I would actually never karaoke I'm definately making more of an effort to sing aloud around Max & Adelaide so they see it as a normal part of their days (and hopefully they continue even if they sing as poorly as me).

At the moment this would be the song I sing most frequently (Dr knickerbocker excluded) , particularly when we are driving.

Max occasionally sings along & thinks it's quite amusing to sing "like a shoe on the wire" thanks to a pair of soccer boots thrown over the powerlines further down our street.

This is my current favourite Leonard song that I wish I did a better karaoke version of:

More karaoke goodness over here.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Creative Space? What space?

Nothing feels very creative around here at the moment, just BUSY trying to create space! I've spent the week attempting to:
  • sort & store away the kids clothing; dragging out baby gear, packing away toddler stuff. This is one of those jobs I really dislike. The only positives (besides having some clothing for when our baby arrives) seems to be the bags of stuff I've put aside for friends expecting babes & those taken to the op shop! I've yet to work out a great system for storing the kids clothing, I'm always finding gear that I forgot about that is already outgrown.
  • moving everything out of the "sewing room" again. I really should give up on calling this my room as it really is for visitors and considering we always have a constant stream of them I rarely get to actually use it as a sewing room! I did manage to put this rail up in the room (something I'd been planning to do for ages). It's handy for hanging crafty gear while also being useful for guests to hang their clothes & towels.
While I was at it I put one up in the hallway. Living in a small house means every space is gradually being colonised for some sort of storage solution!

  • finshing Etsy orders. The dress above and these bloomers (to go with one of these pinnies). I'm about to close up the Etsy shop for a while as it is getting too hard to find the time to get orders done with everything else going on.

  • I did manage to sew up these pillows as a wedding present for someone Tim works with. I never seem to tire of this lovely print by Australian designer Kristen Doran.

  • All the cleaning did unearth that lost sleeve from back here. With some divine intervention I'll find some time to sew it on soon.
More creative spaces over here.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Eye Spy - something green

I've been meaning to post about the current deal available from Nuenergy for ages now. If you've ever been interested in installing solar panels that feed into the electricity grid (thereby reducing your power bills) this may be your chance to do it for free....if you fit the criteria, etc. Check it out here. We signed up as part of our gradual 'green' transformation of our average suburban house.

While you are at it, check out the insulation rebates currently being offered by the federal government, some info here. Depending on your house size & what insulation you select this rebate could cover the entire cost of the installation, again helping to reduce your power bills.

And now a few green pics from around the garden, we finally got the garlic in this weekend...planting lots this year as I know I'm not going to have a lot of gardening time in the months ahead so the garlic can fill the garden beds to make it look productive (and we do eat a LOT of garlic!)

The land cress has been loving all the rain we have been getting

the artichokes are going strong....these are great as they look after themselves remarkably well (I've potted up a whole lot of self sown seeds from these plants that will be sold to raise money for a garden renovation project at the Centre where we attend be sold at this market)
Self-sown coriander (notice the self-sown theme?)

The last of the chillies....these will be picked & frozen for use over winter

Bulbs are popping up everywhere

Max's broccoli, netted off to protect it from the over-zealous gardener he can sometimes be

The broad bean crop slowly emerging

Some alpine strawberry runners (I think that's what they are called) collected from a park in the city, to be potted up soon, these are great ground covers that do actually produce little strawberries.

More greenery can be found here. Thanks to Trashalou for the green theme.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Offerings from the garden

It always surprises me when our rather neglected garden offers up something that looks so delicate. Not as many poppies self-seeded in the garden this year, but enough to allow a fairly constant supply for the kitchen windowsill (I'm pretending that's rain splatters on the window - despite the fact the deck has a roof!)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

WANTED: scapegoat

I seem to be constantly losing things at the moment!

I want someone to blame but of course it is me doing most (all?) of the misplacing.

For instance the sleeve to this's all I need to finish it off, I had it in my hand not 10 minutes ago, I went to get a drink and someone took off with it!

I go through this so many times each day at the moment, eventually it will turn up in the compost or veggie crisper (already looked there tonight). This is my reasoning for having 4 pairs of sewing scissors, 6 elastic bodkins, 3 quick unpicks.......the list goes on.

Unfortunately I don't have enough left over fabric for another little sleeve so this poor thing will just have to wait patiently until the lost part is rediscovered, then I might even iron it (although that might be getting carried away a bit!)

Creative Space - upcycling, recycycling or just good old frugality

My creative space....again it is the dining table!

I managed some cutting out last night after the kids were in bed, in between glances at the TV (Wednesday night being about the only night I watch TV, with the ABC's lineup of The Cook & the Chef, New Inventors & The Gruen Transfer.

I picked up this linen shirt at the op shop this week (in the 50c basket). I usually try to find clothing that are marked or really ugly so I'm not cutting up useable items (to someone else) for these upcycling projects. I figure if it has been in our local op shop for long enough to make it to the 50c basket no one must want it (there are a high proportion of Grannies in my neighbourhood, I'm imagining that is who this style of blouse would most appeal to!).

I used one of Adelaide's frocks to cut out the basic pattern, although the without the buttons at the shoulder becasues of the ready to go buttons that will feature down the back of the dress.

All cut out (allowing a small seam allowance & cut a little larger so it fits her for a while). I plan to stitch up the lower half of the button opening, leaving something that resembles a placket at the top. This would have been suitable to reuse the hem except it was a wonky hem on the original shirt so I'll need to restitch it.

That then left these great sleeves....

Perfect for a simple pair of baby pants I think ....

Not that Addie will be likely to fit into the pants once I cut them to size, but here is how the whole thing could end up looking!

And best of all there is a care tag ready to be sewn into the dress!

More creative Spaces over here. Other great upcycling, refashioning projects over here, found via Gina's blog (she even took the pledge!)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Yogurt 101

This is yoga, Max style (pronounced yogurt apparently!)
  1. Lay out your equipment
  2. Gather an audience
  3. Start your yogurt routine
  4. Demand applause! (graciously given by younger sibling)

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mother's day - the start of something

I just had a wonderful weekend.

It may not be every mother's idea of a great Mother's day but it was perfect for me.

Tim took the kids camping for the weekend. Thank you Tim, for everything!

I think this will become a tradition in our family.

It was the first time in 3 years I had an evening alone.

Yum Cha with a friend (& others) on Saturday for her birthday.

It was not until Sunday afternoon I even put any music on, the quiet was just so blissful.

Hope all you Mother's out there had a great day.

Eye Spy - "reading"

It's not what I call reading but this is what I've been looking through before bed, working out what I need for the quilts I want to make (or start to make soon)....

It's this book by Denyse Schmidt, the one I used for making Max's baby quilt.

I've got the patterns copied & the fabrics (purple being the chosen colour) ready to go for this quilt, long ago promised to my niece....

And this is the one I'm contemplating for the new baby (cot sized), with some mustard in there no doubt...

See what others are reading over at

Friday, May 8, 2009


It started with this little bit of 'fluff' (polyfill) found on the floor at Spotlight, carted around for the rest of the morning with constant talk of all the things we could make with it. Max decided it was just right for a rocketship when we got home and in the interim it could be snow in the back of his tip truck (an op shop find, also carted around all morning).

When we got home I remembered this op-shopped single curtain. I had planned to make a pillow case & actually probably still have enough left over to do so. Out came the scissors after the PERFECT rocketships were selected....
More fill was found (this is the last of some polyester quilt batting offcuts I bought from reverse garbage 6 years ago....did I mention I rarely throw anything out?)
Sewn & stuffed (wow....these things really take a lot of stuffing....I was thinking of getting some wool stuffing to have on hand but I'll need quite a lot if I ever get around to making 'softies' again). Besides being hit in the eye by a flying rocketship (which I suspect was actually from Tim's over-zealous testing) they have been a roaring success.....BLAST OFF!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Creative Space - clothkits

This isn't really where the sewing is happening at the moment, but I'm reluctant to show how the sewing space actually looks at the moment as I work on getting orders finished & sent. Instead there is this.....the reward for getting through this lot of orders.

It is from clothkits who have a lot of things reduced at the moment (given the exchange rate it almost makes them affordable!)

This is too make a dress for Adelaide (although even the size 1 looks too big for her at the moment). The colour was described as rubine red, which in reality translates to pink. It should look like this when I'm done....

I kind of wish I had ordered the blue now.....

And to top it all of I also got one of these kits as well.....although it will be a while before I can wear it - the best bit is the sizing is from 8-18 so whatever I end up as after this baby I can just make!

Pop over to Kirsty's to see her fabulous circle scarves & other creative spaces.


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