Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Paddle and Breakfast .....................

What an amazing morning I've had. Twenty Dragon Boat paddlers went out early this morning for a fun paddle - no race starts, no endurance paddling, no sprint exercises - plenty of Christmas shirts, reindeer antlers and tinsel.

We sang Carols across the river, and to walkers along the river bank.

The most magical part of the morning was spotting 5 dolphins, then quietly following them with "stealth paddling". As we sat silently in the middle of the river the dolphins came within a couple of metres of the boat. We were not a threat and they were not threatened. Just beautiful - what a precious moment.

then off to our favourite café for breakfast - 30 paddlers, lots of fun and noise, chocolates, raffles and Christmas wishes for each other.

It's all good.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Nearly Christmas ....................

It is going to be a busy time and place at home this year. Three families and three dogs will be here for most of a week - it will be hectic and also just wonderful.
I am waiting on a few swap blocks to arrive. One more 6 inch block to sew and my December swaps will be completed. These are my latest blocks out -

Ellie asked for any block in baby colours - a love making my blocks all different -

and Nikki asked for any block in black, white and red. I made a second block for Nikki [paper pieced] but didn't photograph it before mailing. Maybe Nikki will post a picture.
I had a fun Christmas party at Manning Point, with the Dragon Boat Club. There was an evening paddle followed by dinner at the Waterbird restaurant. The evening was quite late, most stayed over and had bbq breakfast at the reserve before heading home. Many could not face an early morning paddle on Sunday. Wonder why!!!
Croquet District party and Trophy Presentation was at Gloucester this year. The Gloucester members are wonderful hosts - the shade, seating, games, company and specially the food made for a great day.
Taree Croquet Club Christmas Party proved to be an all day event. First players beat the heat by hitting off about 8.00 am. Lunch was 'Bring and Share' - what a delicious array of food, an absolute feast. This was followed by our Trophy Presentation -
Proud Winners for 2013


Monday, November 25, 2013

Tile block from Carmen ..................

This is my new block choice for the QBSA 12 inch swap - a Tile block in black and white with one patch a solid colour. [It could of course be made as a scrappy, or in a particular colour scheme with matching or contrasting sashing throughout.] Any of the patches could be the coloured one.

Thank you so much Carmen, they are beautiful, Jan

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Cat Minding ....................

We have had cats in the past - when my daughters were children. Now they have children of their own and when 2 families had a beach holiday I was asked if the kitten could stay. Of course she could!!

She didn't want cuddles at first, after all she did not know me. But soon she snuggled up, or helped with whatever I was doing. The only thing that was not so good was when she walked on the computer keyboard.

Fluffy Grey had a lovely weekend.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Sisters 10 QAL ................

I was immediately attracted to this QAL, found a collection of Asian style fabrics in beautiful, rich colours, and I am catching up. My choice of background is Fig, a deep purply plum that is in all the other fabrics. I resisted silver grey and pale blue, and now I am torn - would a lighter colour be better, what about a mid lime green? This happens every time, but I think the darker fabric will give the quilt an exotic richness. That is certainly my hope.
Blocks to date -

Two each of three more blocks and I can put it all together - maybe not until early next year as I am making dresses for my youngest three grand daughters for Christmas - ho, ho,ho.

Friendship Stars ........................

for Joanne, my 6 inch block swap partner. Joanne asked for blue and green with white - and I made three variations of this block -

I received a $40 voucher from Spotlight this week, so bought fabric for a quilt for my youngest granddaughter, the only grandie I have not made a quilt for yet. It will be a third birthday present, and these are the materials I am looking forward to working with -

love the cats

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Paper Piecing Swaps ................

In September I swapped with De. This is the block I sent to her -

Cupcake. In return De sent these cat blocks, eyes will be embroidered and tails added with quilting -

I have asked for my blocks to be in real cat colours - black, white, brown, grey, orange - but in any patterns.

Yesterday was wet all day - a great opportunity to spend time at the machine.
I did spend a lot of time sewing and I am so excited by the result, very pleased indeed. This is Julianne's scrappy Starburst -

I can't imagine having the patience to make enough blocks for a quilt, but collecting some in a swap is the way to go.

90 mm of rain so far. The trees and grass look greener and the air is clear and green. The earth can soak up a lot more before we think we've had enough.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

November Swap Partners ..............................

Carmen asked for a Box Kite block in black, white and red. These are the blocks I made for her -

Carmen asked for Any Stars in pink, burgundy, green and cream. These are her blocks.

I have 2 options at the moment - Tall Ships, and Tile Block in black and white with one patch a solid colour - like this -



I will join a number of these ships to make a large floor cushion for my sailing grandsons.

Yesterday I spent over an hour choosing books for my older grandchildren for Christmas. There is a lot of rubbish on some book store shelves, but I believe I found 4 beautiful, meaningful and well written books appropriate to the ages of the readers.

For the little girls, I am making summer dresses in co-ordinating fabrics from Prints Charming.

What a very busy time of year - Dragon Boat Regatta at Forster next weekend, Manning Dragon Boat Christmas party [and breakfast] the following weekend,
district Croquet clubs Christmas celebration and trophy presentation early December, and our club's Party and Trophies the following weekend.

Our district is sooo-oo dry the trees are shedding leaves and the grass is brown. At this very moment the rain that started last night is still falling, and is forecast to continue for a number of days. The vege garden and the water tank are also benefitting.

Can't work outside today, so I think I'll warm up the machine and do some more of my paper piecing swap block.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Two parcels in a week ..................

My swap partner for December was Lori in USA and her blocks took nearly 3 weeks to arrive. My January partner Helen and I swapped very early in the month - soo-ooooooooo - two parcels arrived in one week. Lovely!

These are from Lori,

and these are from Helen, all beautiful blocks that fit well with my collection of spinning wheels.

This is the blue and white star I sent to Helen, along with a mug mat made from the same fabrics.

Now I have made contact with my February partner who has asked for a block with a teapot or cup and saucer theme. I have found some foundation piecing patterns I will make up with some new exciting Asian patterned fabrics.

I was also part of Sue's cushion swap - mine arrived a little while ago - picture in an earlier post. This is the cushion I made for Fiona -

The petal shapes are held in place with buttons, and the cover closes with a single overhand knot in a matching tie.
I am currently making a couple of cushions for ME. Pictures will follow their completion.
More sewing is planned for my grandies - next birthday is for 5 yo - angry birds purse and a wall banner with her name is planned.
For an older grandson I have plans to make The Hobbit quilt from fandomin stitches. If I start now it should be ready in plenty of time with no rushing.