....ohh and pencils and paper

Friday, March 31, 2023

Hearts of Friendship

 Good morning dear friends. As you may have read in a previous post, I had sent off my Hearts quilt to friend Fiona @bubzrugz for her magic quilting.....and it was delivered back by lovely friends Marilyn and Susan. Part of the "quilting caravan" that goes back and forth up the mountain....and it's beautiful! I am calling it "Hearts of Friendship " and it will be permanently in reach of my favourite chair.

A little background on this quilt. Fiona coordinated blogging and quilting friends to gift me a heart block they had made to show me their love and compassion during the difficult time of caring for my husband during his terminal illness. Blocks came to me from the length and breadth of our land, from our cousins in New Zealand, Texas, Canada and UK. It was truly humbling and overwhelming. But stitchers kindness never really surprises me......they are truly amazing! Accompanying many of the blocks were heartfelt cards and notes of love and encouragement. 
You will never know just how much this gift means to me. It has taken me awhile to get it together as it was just too emotional to attempt it but I know my dear hubby would be wanting me to "get it done!" So with the heat subsiding.....although a fan still necessary, I got the binding sewn on and stitched down.
Fiona's quilting is so beautiful and she has put special meaning into it. She quilted ribbons tying all our hearts together, representing all of our friendship. 

And beautiful continous hearts on the borders.....
Some pics from the front. I also made a couple of hearts to make the layout even.

I have used two heart blocks that were a bigger size and couldn't be altered for the label.
I have written it yet but I will tell it's story.
My deepest heartfelt thanks to all of you lovely friends that sent hearts and messages and to my dear friend Fiona who organised this for me and then gifted the're a rare gem xx
Earlier this week I had a stitching day and lunch with friends at friend Bev's home. We stitched overlooking her lovely tropical garden.....amazing what such a heavenly slice of green does for you.....
I even got to have a little wander.....

And how about this stunning orchid! It truly is an oasis in the suburbs!
Our lunch was delicious and Bev knows her pineapple slice is a favourite of that was dessert.....ohhh it's heavenly....and I got a slice to take home....spoilt just a tad!
I could not have gotten through the last 2 years without my family and kindest of friends. Don't take them for granted....make sure they know what they mean to you.
Have a lovely weekend everyone be it busy or quiet.
Namaste and Blessings Michelle xxx 

Friday, March 24, 2023

Ladies Who Lunch

 Good morning. After a showery couple of days, the sunshine is back. Ever so slightly cooler and I for one am thankful.

I have had a visit to the city with my DD, DIL, GDs and friends to belatedly celebrate DDs birthday as life's schedule just doesn't always work out.
We have a family tradition of the girlies and Nanas going to the Shingle Inn for high tea. I did it with my Nan and so it went down through the family.
I was excited to take my Granddaughters. 
Whilst the fittings have been preserved having been dismantled from it's original site and stored until being set up in our City Hall......sadly the service and food was NOT as we remembered! The insta photos are pretty though....goes to show you can't always believe the internet lol!
The takeaway from the day was however.....great company and fun!

Sewing wise, I am managing to keep up with my BOM Owl and Hare with the completion of the last block in this part. I really am loving this project.
Gossip in the Garden is also progressing well. With this part completed to await extra blocks further down the track.

Because as you know I dislike piecing and will usually go to all manner of lengths to avoid bits I don't fancy, I have opted out of 15 star blocks around the main block. Instead I have paper pieced some elongated hexagons to make kisses.....with the block amongst them....butterfly kisses.

I have six more kisses to make and applique down....I like them!
My weekly stitching meditation is coming along.....such a calming thing to do....just stitch and let your mind relax.

My sweet Orang-utan is now rendered in coloured pencil. It was a lovely experience with his gentle eyes watching me draw the rest of him.
Someone commented to me a while ago that it was an odd combination that I stitched and quilted and drew birds and animals.....I was a bit taken aback.....why? Without nature we are nothing was my response! Why must we be one thing or the other. Why can't we embrace all the things that make our hearts sing. That make us uniquely us.
I think the strangest animal sometimes is the human being lol!
Well on that profound note I shall finish.
Take care lovely people.

Namaste and Blessings Michelle xxx 

Saturday, March 11, 2023

Letter to My Daughter

 Due to some hard work by my friend Fiona @bubzrugz I was able to gift my dear daughter her quilt on her birthday. Even though much complaining and some tweaking about the assembly of this quilt, it meant a lot to stitch it for her.

I enjoyed working in the brighter palette for a change and I think all the brighter Tildas worked well.

Fiona's quilting made it shine!

Dear Daughter with her quilt.....I nabbed her fresh from the shower lol!

Of course being a birthday there had to be cake.....Belgian chocolate cake.....her Dad's include him in the celebration x
BTW I think I was somewhat clever giving birth to a little woman on International Womens Day *wink!
As my main objective was to get the binding on that quilt done I have now only gotten back to Gossip in the Garden with Fiona. I completed this easy "Daisy in a Teacup" block.....very hard to get a good photo.....its so skinny and long! 
It is lovely in real life. I am also working on the second stitchery for Owl and Hare with Lorel but nothing really to show there. 
Another spool roll has been calling to me.....I wanted to stitch a Christmas one and as I had it already cut out and prepped I dove right in!
First page is "snowy" and before all the Aussie......we don't have snow at Christmas....begin to tutt.....I LOVE snowmen and so I am having snowmen lol!
Always feels good to free those little treasures from their tins and drawers and create something with them. The doiley half I retrieved was a collar from a dolly I had made way back when and who was damaged and couldn't be saved.....I like that!
Well friends the day is closing in and as I have actually cooked.....yes you heard that right....I made a pot of tasty bacon, potato and carrot soup and I have a fresh, crusty roll to go with it.....I am going to enjoy it.
Leaving you with my two awesome little women of the future. 
Take care and hug your tribe.
Namaste and Blessings Michelle xxx

Friday, March 3, 2023

Owls, Hares and Teacups

 Hello friends, I know time doesn't really go faster but...we are in March! Both my quilt projects are coming along and giving me enjoyment. I have now completed the centre panel for Gossip in the Garden that I am stitching with my friend Fiona @bubzrugz and we may have coerced...I mean encouraged a couple of other friends to join us. I have loved this pattern for so long and am loving stitching it. This centre panel was what originally attracted me to Gossip in the Garden. 

And being the strange little person I am, meaning and connection always attracts me first.  If you will permit me a little wander off the path. 

This block reminded me instantly of all the precious time our family spent with my Grandmother on the open front verandah of her workers cottage, shaded by a huge poinciana tree....

It was a glorious tree and cooled the whole home. It's soft end leaves gently brushing the verandah roof. We would sit, have tea, coffee, cool drinks and sweet treats she had baked and most important of all.....yarned.....its where I and my children learnt the value and love of a good story.....learnt your family history and tales. It's where we caught up with visiting country family and all their news, shared good news and sometimes sad. There were sometimes a few and sometimes a horde....all were fed and watered and embraced and you sat sometimes on a comfy cushioned cane chair, sometimes on the floor or front one be there was enough!
And this gentle woman was at the heart of it all.
And her favourite teacup was this set....Colclough English Fine bone china. It's Indian Tree pattern. This one has a different shaped cup than those I have researched. 
I use it often when my friends come for sewing....she would love that it bears witness to a cuppa and lots of chat!
So I managed to keep my February deadline for Gossip....just! But lovely memories definitely kept me company.
Well that was the "teacups" The "Owl and Hare" refer to Natalie Birds sweet new BOM that I am stitching along with friend Lorel.
I have completed one stitchery and glued and stitched the hexie circle but they aren't sewn in place yet! If you love hexies this is the quilt for you!
Also the same applies for the lovely elongated hexie wheel spokes that hooked me on this project! Just waiting to be stitched down. This really is a pretty quilt.

My last little project to share is a weekly, stitching type of meditation....basically just for the love of a needle and thread.  My Mum on one of her OpShop journeys picked up this length of heavyweight woven cotton fabric and gave it to me.
I never knew quite what to do with it....until now! So I drew up 52 odd segments marked them with running stitch and have begun to fill one a week with whatever stitch I fancy.
I have probably got enough to make cover ends for another accordion sketch book as happy to make use of it.
I have been going through a cycle once again of waking at odd hours and rather than allow my mind to go to those places I pick up a book.....just finished this one..... sweet Orang-utan is coming along slowly.....he's a chubby chappy with textured skin....a lot of it and it's slow going.
Also a bit of back to basics for me and my pencil too.....different pencils and shading.
Ok lovely folk.....the kettle is on the boil and calling me to make a brew. A little thought to!
Have a lovely weekend and I hope you trip over a few ideas lying around.
Namaste and Blessings Michelle xxx