Saturday, 22 December 2012

There and back again...

Tried to post from the now up dated iPad, but still won't quite talk to blogger. Managed to get a heading & half a post written, but can't figure out how to get a photo off the iPad into the post. Found photos from my phone (? how does that work!) but not the iPad I was using. Then an error appeared & I gave up (yet again).
So fingers crossed this one might work, any ideas for posting from an iPad (esp. re:photos) greatly appreciated!!!

Thursday, 15 November 2012

The school fete has taken over my life!!!

...and doing the roster is doing my head in!!! Normal transmission will resume AFTER THE FETE!
But please do come along - Sunday 25th November 10-4pm, Coburg West Primary School, Reynard St Coburg.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Cup day = craft day

Over the last couple of years  I have managed to do some sewing on Cup day, and had something new to wear to work the next day. Plans to make a skirt or too today, but haven't quite  got there yet.  Baked  a carrot cake in my dazzlingly shiny oven (my  wonderful husband had a day off yesterday and cleaned  the oven, can you believe it? I can actually see in the oven door now, for the first time in years! And the racks are actually silver, who would have known!)
I did manage to tidy up the one spot on the crowded shelf where my craft books are, and cut out some more zombie felt critters for the school fete ( which is so close now it is not funny). Cut out a couple of sets of bunting to decorate stalls at the fete but it is still sitting and waiting on the sewing machine.
The boys had a friend over, and they played around with the hama/meltable beads making "Minecraft" keyrings. Cool stuff -  if anyone is heading over to Ikea soon, let me know - they sell the  melty beads by the bucket apparently!

Have to make a Pokemon dress up outfit for an upcoming birthday party, and a birthday present for the birthday girl, planning on making another of these...

I have made about 6 of these drawing sets now, they make a great birthday present. With this one I also included a terrific "Paint your own babushka doll" set from blank. I love their stuff!  Bought some more lovely things from them at the Finders Keepers Market last month - end of year teacher's presents!
So now I will watch the Cup, and then maybe get to the sewing machine!

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

And the academy award goes to...

Yes dear readers, I have really nailed this parenting thing. According to the very nearly 12 year old, and the 9 year old, I have an amazing  skill - "somewhat surprising" they said, which has really impressed the boys, so much so that they ask for  more. What is this remarkable talent you ask? My creative, craftiness; all that home cooking & baking; decorating their birthday cakes;  vast knowledge of many things (ability to answer bizarre kid questions); hours spent on PFA fundraisers for their school??? No....
.... it is my uncanny ability to make cat noises, in particular  
to vocally re - enact the sounds of a hissing cat fight!!!

PS. craft group PO cafe  next Monday night.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

tomorrow night at the PO

Craft group is on again tomorrow night, 7:30 at the PO cafe on Sydney Road.
Sorry I can't post any photos at the mo' - the computer memory is chockers so can't load any new photos on, tried to use the iPad but need to load an app 1st & can't do that til we upgrade the ios which we can't do 'cos the computer memory is, as I said, chockers! AARRGGHHHH!!!!

But if you pop over to the Brunswick Brown Owls facebook page, there are some photos of me and my latest creation! Melinda & I went along to the owls group last Wednesday, a lovely bunch of very crafty people, making a wide range of amazing creations! I can't get to their next meet on the 24th due to a work commitment, but I would recommend  for anyone else to go along!

PS. Managed to get to the church fete, Oak Park PS fete and the Brunswick kinder fete yesterday! Lots of gorgeous crafty goodness at the kinder. And lots of very cute bunnies at the church fete's animal farm.  Not to mention the goats, I would sooooo love a pet goat!, always had a soft spot for them!!! Wonder if  I could fence off the lane way and keep one out there, maybe.....would make our backyard farm complete I reckon!

Monday, 8 October 2012


In the few lovely sunny days we had in the school holidays, I did manage to get my pushy out and go for a ride - for the first time in ages! Must try and do it more often!

Pop over here to see some brilliant crafty people. I have been wondering what goes on over at the Harvest Workroom, Lygon St Brunswick when I have walked past there. And thanks to a tip off from the Brunswick Brown Owls, now I know! ( and I want to go and do a screen printing course there... like  I need  yet another craft to get into!).  I might try and pop along to the Brown Owls this Wednesday night, usually can't get there because it is the same week as our Coburg craft group, or it is school council meeting night. Anyone else like to come along?

Thursday, 4 October 2012

School holidays...

Hiya holidays have kind of gotten in the way of things lately. Only crafting I have done is knit a quick "sock" cover for my new phone!
HEAPS of crafty events & such coming up this month, so get your diaries out- edited to add a couple more now!

• Peppertree Place in Coburg have their monthly vege swap this Saturday 10-12, and their annual garden fiesta is scheduled for November 10, 10 til 4.
•Saturday 13th Oct is the St Albans (Reynard St. Coburg) church fete, 9:30-2
•and also the Oak Park PS fete 10-4
•and Made 'n' Thornbury market 10-2
• AND  Brunswick Kinder fete Glenlyon Rd 10-4

• Finders Keepers Market is on again at the Old exhibition centre Fri 19th- Saturday  - finders keepers
•Sisters' Market, Norhcote Town hall, Saturday 20th 10-4
• Sat 20th Oct PEGS school Essendon (across the road from Windy Hill!) Craft show & fete
•Sunday 21st Oct- St Joseph's  PS fete 10-4 I think some of these billboards have been read from trams, and I can't find details on the schools' websites either, tut tut!)
•Sunday 21st Oct Errol st Nth Melbourne Spring Fling festival, and the craft market is also on.

• Friday 26 Oct 5-9pm St Fidelis PS fete
• Saturday 27th Brunswick Nth PS school fete
•Sunday 28th Oct Moonee Ponds Central school - Spring fete, 10-4

Margaret Mary's PS fete is also on - another poster I saw from the road but not close enough to see the date! And nothing on their website or anywhere! Unlike the Brunswick kinder - when I googled the fete, came up with a whole page of listings. Good on them for promoting their event so well. HINT HINT people.

PLUS the Craft and Sewing show is on Oct 25-28! Not sure how many of these events I can get to without a tardis, but I will try!

Sunday, 16 September 2012

tomorrow night

Same bat time, same bat channel ...see you at the POH for craft group tomorrow night. Absolutely no idea what I will be bringing!

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

craft events coming up

20 October - craft market at PEGS school Essendon (next to Windy Hill) 10-4pm
21st October - St Joseph's primary school Victoria st Brunswick, school fete

There is also a market night next Wednesday I think, at a kinder in Pascoe Vale, kent rd or Derby st - I have seen the promotional boards but didn't write it down so can't remember the details.  Sorry for being vague!

PS if anyone is trying to send me a text & doesn't hear back from me -  I am not being rude- my phone can send a text but hasn't received any for over a week now. Hence I am reading lots of reviews on which phone to buy next!

YAY! brand new season of Dr Who starts next weekend!

Enjoying  the paralympics, love that my kids are so keen to watch it, cheering on Ahmed Kelly, Kurt Fearnly, & others that they have seen bios on "The road to London" on the ABC.

Grand Designs live is coming to Melbourne! I soooo want to go (the kids do to, but not my H!)

Sunday, 2 September 2012

You would never guess what I found... Coburg Coles supermarket yesterday! I don't usually shop in Coles, but ducked in to see what they had in marshmallows (same pink & white as Woolies unfortunately - I was after white only, really don't like the pink ones). ANYWAY at the magazine stand at the register, they had a whole stack of Mollie Makes magazines!  With free 'handmade with love" roll of cloth tape! All for just $12 - about $4 cheaper than at the newsagent. I just can't believe it was in the supermarket - an indie UK craft magazine, how weird is that... I have a hard time finding it in a newagent half the time!  I will bring it along to craft group at the PO cafe tomorrow night! See you there!

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Still here...

Still coughing, sneezing, going through boxes of tissues like they were growing on trees or something! I am sick of being sick! I have to get the wheat bags finished for tomorrow night, the owls all have faces now, just need to pin, fill & sew. The lovely Rachel from school & craft group has taken the plain bags ( and several kilos of wheat!) home to make the plain heat bags. I will try & so some sewing this afternoon. But I have a birthday present to finish first, ready for a special 8 year old birthday on Thursday. 
Here is the cat cushion I made for my niece's recent birthday (also 8). I made her brother the dog cushion, and found the cat pattern in an old "Women's Day Handcraft"  book -  1979!!!

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Hand sewing help needed

 In my enthusiastic sewing efforts last week, I made some of these and cut out some more, they just need eyes hand sewn on, then I can pour in the barley and sew them up.
The owls have their wings sewn on, and eyes pinned on ready to be hand sewn, then likewise filled & finished.
They would be done now, but of course I woke up coughing & had no voice on Friday. Which turned into the flu. Which means I feel like utter crap. Today is the most coherent my brain has been for days. I am sooo over sleeping/dozing/even sitting on the couch. Haven't slept much because of trying to sleep on the couch at night, and the damn rabbit, I don't  think she does sleep - she eats, drinks, chews, jumps around all night (Monday night she actually broke one of the  ramps in her house, so I suppose she does have an excuse for being extra restless that night). 
Anyway, I was planning on having these all finished to have a mini craft stall at the book fair/art show next Wednesday. If anyone can help with some hand sewing, that would be great.  Let me know. I wouldn't dare touch a needle & thread just yet, I would  likely have  a coughing fit & poke myself in the eye!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Looking up...

5 mins after my H left for work this morning, the phone rang. "Go out the front and look at the clouds" he said. So we did (well, Tigerboy & I did, Jedikid was still in bed coughing). Still in my dressingown, I skipped across the road, managed to find an angle to avoid the powerlines, and snapped this! And how cool are these clouds, they were like big grey bubbles, never seen anything like it before.

Tell you what, with kids home sick & me not going to work, I have soooo got my craft mojo back! I have done more cutting & sewing in this last week than I have for ages. Cut out a dozen owls on Sunday (I think I am really getting the hang of the rotary cutter finally, made a strong cardboard template & cut out all the owls with it, thanks to Nikki for the tips in her terrific book! AND I made myself a sort of tunic top.
I bought the pattern at the craft show, I had admired it last year, and when I saw it there again this year, I  had to buy one. It is supposed to have sleeves, but I have been wanting to make a tunic top for ages, so played around with the pattern & the bias binding maker. I cut the long placket opening 7 it flops forward a bit much, so I sewed a cool red button half way along it tonight, hope it will sit better now. Planning on wearing it to work tomorrow. Had planned on wearing it with my black pants, but they haven't been out of the bottom of the drawer for a while (buried under several pairs of jeans) and they had that funky smell unique to clothing found in the bottom of the drawer... I really need to finish taking up my new black jeans (which have been sitting in the mending pile since last year!)

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Busy busy...

With no plans for the weekend, the youngest getting over a bug and the oldest coming down with one, we spent the weekend at home. I actually got lots of sewing & cutting out done. Even sorted out my folders of patterns, so I can actually find a pattern when I need it, without having to look through 6 books of random stuff 1st. Since I was home 2 days last week when Tigerboy was ill, this is like some kind of record for crafting for me! Photos tomorrow I promise, just too busy cutting & sewing today to stop & take any!

Thursday, 2 August 2012

School craft stall sewing

Aprons - cut out, demo model sewn - ready for someone to take home & sew up the other 7.

Baby "taggy" toys - next week's project. Still working out which is the best type of plastic to put inside to make that lovely crinky sound babies love!

Owl heat pack - demo model here, whizzed up on the machine - should have hand stitched/embroidered eyes.
Hope to have a few of these ready for a mini craft stall at the book fair later this month. Figure there is not much point trying to sell heat bags at the fete in summer!

Craft group next Monday 6th, in the PO cafe.

Monday, 30 July 2012

Sewing day today...finally!

The kitchen table & chairs are covered in bits of fabric, the mini ironing board is set up on the washing machine, & the sewing machine ready to go. I have made 2 apron bodies, & have the ties still to sew up. Time for lunch now, then back to work! Determined to get some aprons & an owl finished. And whip up a new heat pack - mine was making popping sounds & looked a tiny bit not right in the microwave last night - time for a replacement!

Friday, 27 July 2012

Another week gone...

Another week gone again, I swear I go to bed Tuesday, wake up and it is Friday! Where does it go??? Still no sewing getting done, plenty of thinking & planning & occasionally even cutting out... "here's on I prepared earlier" should be the caption here, made another mondrian patch skirt a week or two before the school holidays. Purple. black & grey this time, again all done on the overlocker. I cut out the centre front  ( actually the end piece on the left side) a couple of inches wider this time, which seems to sit better/gape less! Skirts are tricky to photograph when you are wearing them!
4 of us at the PO Monday night, hoping to double that next time - 6th August- and meet at the PO Cafe which is mush bigger & brighter.
PS the boys have talked about getting up at 5am tomorrow to watch the opening ceremony, I have informed them that if they do so I will kill them! Or at least be very sleep deprived, cranky & snappy with them for the rest of the weekend! And be too tired to drive even the sewing machine, making me even CRANKIER!!!  ( I refuse to drive the car if I have had less then 4 hours continuous sleep)
PPS went to the Craft Show yesterday, must take some pics of my finds - 5cm bias binding maker YAY, quilting ruler- finally! + new blades for the rotary cutter, and BEST OF ALL - STAR WARS FABRIC. Awesome!!!

Monday, 23 July 2012

Crafting this week

Yes there has actually been some sewing, knitting &  general crafty stuff happening here...Last week I made a dog for my nephew's birthday. I think it is the first thing I have actually made from the "Softies" books. I have been wanting to make one for the Jedikid, but he always says he doesn't like it because he doesn't like the face on the photo in the book. So I made the face different to the pattern for my nephew ... and of course the J kid liked this one & now he wants one of his own, typical!!!
Last weekend I relieved our lemon tree of 12 1/2 kg of lemons! My H was fantastic in coming up with lots of " lemon maths" for the boys to do - weighing the lemons a couple at a time on the kitchen scales, adding up the totals, calculating the average weight of the lemons; then a guessing competition to try and figure out  which - if any- lemon was closest to the "average"!!!
  Enjoying the glorious sunshine on the weekend, we visited the Flemington market yesterday & got to  meet Ms Curlypops, and Beccasauras - although it turns out, (thanks to Bec's very impressive good memory), I actually met her last year  through work! Small world huh!
See you at craft group tonight - hope you can come along! Meanwhile I just have time to duck down to Spotlight before 3:30, to replace my craft glue  (why does the last bit in the bottle always go tacky & you can't use it???) & use my $5 scratchie!

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

We have a high school!

If you haven't heard the news - the govt today announced that Coburg senior high will re-open in 2015 as a 7-12 high school! 5 years of hard work by the High School for Coburg group has paid off!  I haven't been as active in the group in the last 2 years due to CWPS commitments but have followed & supported the group since the start. Big thanks especially to Cate Hall who started the group and has been tireless in her work lobbying politicians, media & the Education Department.

PS Craft group at the PO next Monday 7:30-9ish, see you there! Getting a few more projects ready for the school craft stall, if you want a project let me know!

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

We had a couple of days out of town, our annual weekend holiday with 4 other families. We all have a child in grade 6 this year - we got together when the kids were at 4 year old kinder together.
Loved the rocks, the weather (we were sooooo lucky, it was cold but sunny!), the bushwalks, and the kangaroos that were everywhere (you had to be careful walking around the caravan park of an evening,  a couple of times we rounded a corner & nearly tripped over a 'roo.).

One family weren't quite so lucky, they hit a roo 15 mins out of Halls Gap as they arrived on Friday night. Lucky it was only a small one, so not too much damage to the car. But of course not so good for the roo either. But it was magical to be able to quietly walk up to within about 3 metres of a couple of grazing roos - close enough to hear them chewing! I'm sure the caravan park managers don't really need to mow the grass - it is grazed constantly by the roos!
We walked into town  with the kids (there are 9 altogether) on Sunday evening for some hot chips, and came across this mum & joey. There is something very endearing about the little joey popping its head out of the pouch, and munching along with its mum! We saw another one earlier who really looked far too big to fit in the pouch any more, but he was still trying!. Can't you just imagine the kangaroo mum saying "look sweetie, you are just too big ...  don't you think you are getting too old for that...and you are so NOT getting in with those great big, muddy feet anyway.... you never tidy your room....!!!"

Saturday, 30 June 2012

craft markets- quick review

Last Sunday I dropped in to the North Melbourne craft market, after I saw in The Age that it was on. I hadn't been for a year or so, and the Age gave it a great write up, saying it was the best market for handmade & vintage or somesuch. So I had a look, for 22 minutes. Yep, after coughing up the $2 entry fee (what is with that, does it go to a charity/cover the venue hire???), when I check my watch, I had seen the lot in 22mins. With out rushing. Including a brief chat with the nice lady at the recycled-t-shirts-made-into-rugs-fair-trade-giving-women-a-job-in-a-developing-country stall (ok, that would have been soooo much easier if I had've picked up their card!).
There was the usual ho-hum hair clips (sorry, but I have seen too many of these at sooo many other craft markets), some ok-but-not-me jewellery, and lots of overpriced  former op shop clothes. Basically a market for hipsters, judging by the rest of the punters there. But the BEST of vintage? C'mon AGE writers, I know it is only on once a year, but you can not beat the Finders Keepers Market for recycled/upcycled/new/vintage!
Today I had a  chance to duck into  the Northcote Winter Artisans Market (it is on again next Sat. & well worth a look ). It was only a quick look as we were on our way across town for lunch, but I could have stayed for ages. So many lovely, clever, gorgeous things to see!  Loved the sister outlaws re-sew-cool craft kits, and just lost the last half hour or so perusing their website/blog/links. Tea cup candles were lovely too, and I could just smell them through my stuffed up nose. The stall holder there was telling us how one amazing fruity banana/pineapple  candle (like  when you first open a bag of jelly beans I thought!) was  actually called  "monkey farts" but she thought that was silly & not nice! I said it was from the kids' joke  Q.What is invisible & smells like bananas? A. Monkey farts!
As in the one my kids used to say Q. what is invisible & smells like carrots? A. Bunny farts.
I say used to tell this joke... because now we have a bunny, we can confirm that this is not at all true! No carrot smell, just .... smelly bunny smell!!!

Friday, 22 June 2012

More fete sewing...

These are just a few from the MASSIVE pile of granny squares I found at the op shop last year.  I sewed a square of felt on to one to use as a coaster at home, & after seeing a set of 4  felt backed granny's  selling for $28 at the Finders Keepers a while back, I thought we might as well make some for the school craft stall.
I have been re-purposing a few old pairs of jeans too, photos yet to come ( when I remember to take some!). But for now I am off to bed, exhausted after the school disco tonight - it was a HUGE hit! Tigerboy fell over 5 minutes in, had a few tears but then kept on dancing for the next hour and a half. But once he got home, turned on the tears  (boy that kid can act!) insisting the ankle was BROKEN and must be taken to the hospital now because he CAN'T walk anymore. Didn't stop him DANCING earlier  though did it!  
PS finally got my hair cut today, & dropped in to GJ's to chat about bunnies with Georgie. Well I can't go to Angela T's ( hairdressers)  in  Lygon st Bruns & not go across the road can I? I only bought a little bit of fabric....

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

I feel the earth move under my feet..

Whoa, how about that earth tremor tonight? I was drying the dishes, and suddenly the pots & pan on the stove top started to rattle, then the panty, fridge, rabbit hutch - I was waiting for the sound of the police helicopter buzzing low overhead ( it makes our house rattle & the little tv on the fridge goes on the blink), but no - just rattling & shaking. The kids came running out a bit scared - with the Jedikid now sleeping in the high bed above his brother, they felt the shake quite a bit!
 Nothing on the net at first, but lots of people calling in to ABC 774 confirmed what we had all felt! It was SOOOO weird, scary & exciting all at the same time! Like  being next to the washing machine in the spin cycle! I hope the chooks didn't get shaken off their perch! Of course the killer rabbit didn't even bat an eyelid. But at least she has finally got over her aversion to the new litter!

Sunday, 17 June 2012

That rabbit...

Ok, her name actually is Merlyn, but I think she gets called "That rabbit" more often really, because she can be so naughty & cheeky! Last night I couldn't stand the dusty smell of the litter tray anymore, so I dragged her out, trapped her under a laundry basket & changed the litter to a new brand I had bought. WELL that didn't go down too well, she refused to go downstairs at all! (the hutch has  2 ramps and  2 upper levels)
We left her there overnight, and this morning she was still a pissed off bunny! No sooner had I said "well you will have to go down there and  pee sometime" than the cheeky bugger peed on the 1st floor platform instead!
In the end I tempted her with food treats and a large piece of broccoli stem, & she finally came down! Who would have thought something so cut could be so damned obstinate!!!

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Felt critters ready to go!

2 new models for this year's craft stall - cut out  - thank you freezer paper, and my sizzix sidekick!!! - & ready to be sewn up.  Thank you to the lovely Sally who has asked for some hand sewing to do! 
I bought a fantastic cutting die from vicsew - which cuts out 2 pairs of small circles-  the tiny teddy eyes, and the purple guys eyes, slightly bigger; as well as 2 other slightly bigger circles (diff sizes but still useful). The hardest part was finding the right shade of purple wool for the little tuft of hair!

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Just quickly...

...spinners & weavers show wonderful as always, bought a hank of gorgeous really bright green& blue wool for a bright winter scarf (though I really should be finishing my sister's scarf, since it was her birthday yesterday). Busy putting some fete  craft kits together, so if you want to do some sewing for the craft stall - hand sewing & machine- let me know! I will try & get some photos up tomorrow.

Friday, 25 May 2012

Pascoe Vale Spinners & Weavers

Pascoe Vale Spinners & Weavers have their annual show on next weekend, June 2 & 3 at the Swimming Pool hall, Prespect st Pascoe Vale, 10am-4pm.  I have been there several times over the last few years, and the quality of work on display, and beautiful hand spun wool for sale, is just amazing!
I am planning on wearing my "granny squares" t-shirt made. Granny photo print fabric found at the craft show a while back. I wore it to the Brunswick knitting & wool show a few weeks back, and had lots of comments. Mostly positive, although one lady grinned at me and said "well that is just cheating!"

(sorry, I turned the photo around, but when I pasted it in it unturned!)
 The Yarn Barn in Reynard St also has some fantastic balls of wool on sale, $2 each - the whole left side  shelves of the shop. Dropped in today to buy one ball I saw a week ago, couldn't see any more of that, but ended up with 4 others instead (like I need MORE wool!!!). 1 ball should be enough to make a scarf with my easy dropped-stitch pattern from  my "Stitch & Bitch" knitting book.

Will try and get the the PO for Craft Group again next Monday28th too!

Monday, 21 May 2012

For Mum, from D & M

Mary Kathleen Webster was born  September 2 1938 in Rochester, Victoria. The  only girl and forth of 6 children. Mum went to school in Rochester, and also in Maryborough when the family moved there in 1950. The family moved to Nanella in 1953, then to Bendigo after that.
Mum was working  at a jewellers in Bendigo when she met Dad. They married in 1966. I was born a year later, & my  sister Meredith 3 years later.

Mum told M just last week that she lived a very happy life together with Dad, he was a good husband and they enjoyed lots of holidays, with friends and our family. Family holidays were particularly special to her.
In 1978 we had our first big family trip and drove to Queensland to visit our aunt, uncle & cousins in Brisbane. September became the time for our annual driving holiday, which meant we were often away for Mum's birthday, but she never complained.
There were several trips to various parts of Australia including Tassie, back to Qld, SA and the NSW coast. In 1985 we  made our longest trip, driving to Alice Springs & Ayers Rock, accompanied by Mr & Mrs B.

As kids, most weekend were spent "throwing a rod in" (fishing), exploring the bush, sitting at the gun club, or at "The Shack" (family holiday shack) in Barmah. Barmah weekends usually meant fishing in the  boat on the Murray, and Meredith would delight in having a turn at steering the boat - right under the overhanging willow branches, which would of course brush over Mum & make her jump, every time.

Every Easter since we were little, we went to Torquay. Mum usually gave up eating icecream for lent, so Easter sunday always involved chuch followed by a trip to one of the Torquay icecream shops!  The Easter holiday became even more special once the grandkids arrived!

Growing up, mum enjoyed the annual circus that came to town, and as kids she ensured we had similar opportunities. We enjoyed trips  special trips to Melbourne for shows like "The Moscow circus on Ice"; "Disney on Ice"; Pompei; and Dinosuars from China.

Mum was always supportive of us, and encouraged us to do well at school & to go to university; saying we could do anything we wanted to "if you put your mind to it".

Mum showed us the importance of being involved in the community and was herself actively involved at our primary school, Flora Hill. We remember her going to the "Mother's club" meetings, working in the canteen, helping with reading groups, photography, baking for the fete and helping run cake stalls held at the local Woollies. Mum was also a very passionate Sunday School teacher, and would often involve us in making her lesson materials.

No surprise then that Meredith is P&F president at her kid's school, and I am on the PFA & school council at mine. The sense of "giving back", being part of the community, came from Mum & Dad.

Once we were both at school, Mum enrolled in a sewing course at the Bendigo TAFE. Dad had bought her a singer sewing machine with money from fox skins!  Mum made lots of dressed, skirts, pinafores and a much loved corduroy jacket for each of us. Of course everything was made in 2's - same pattern, same or sometimes different colours, 1 for each of us, it had to be fair!

The Women's Weekly magazine was always a great source of inspiration, we were always amazed that we could show mum a pattern for something in the magazine or a craft book, and she could make it for us. Cakes & recipes too - I remember a cake made to look like a record (ABBA of course!) Mum copied from the WW for my 10th birthday.

As we grew up, Mum continued sewing, making some beautiful dresses for us, including bridesmaid's dresses for M's wedding, and even occasionally something for herself.
One Saturday evening, Mum was frantically trying to get a dress finished for M to wear to her college graduation ball. Her friends arrived to pick her up, but the dress wasn't quite finished & mum was still sewing. Our new dog Mich was still a puppy, and he heard the visitors arrive and was barking outside, so Mum said to let him into the back room to stop him barking. Within minutes we heard crashing & banging, because the pup, determined not to be ignored, had destroyed all the newly watered pot plants in the room, spreading dirt & muddy paw prints over everything!  Somehow mum kept her calm & kept on sewing, got the dress finished, M dressed & out the door, and the came to survey the damage!

When I said I didn't want a traditional wedding dress, Mum searched through all the pattern books, and even travelled to Melbourne to drag me around Lincraft; tried & tested patterns; and made my beautiful medieval skirt, blouse & vest.

Knitting however, wasn't her cup of tea. Meredith recently found an unfinished jumper mum started knitting her when she was in primary school.

Mum didn't actively teach us how to sew or cook. But we think being around her cooking, baking & sewing definitely rubbed off on us, because both of us enjoy sewing & making things, and cooking & baking.

Family was central to Mum, and celebrations were certainly done in style, although she never made a fuss. Many events in our lives were celebrated at home, with mum doing all the catering and organizing; such as our 21st birthdays, Dad's 60th, Webster family reunion, a gathering of Dad's duck opening group, M&B's engagement party, and most Christmases.

Family was even more special to mum once she had grandchildren.
Although Dad was regularly away on weekend fishing trips, we had never known mum to go away & leave dad at home - until her first grandchild was born. When I cam home from hospital with J, Dad & mum drove to Melbourne, and then mum stayed for a week to help out with the new baby.

Mum has four grandchildren, JH
 J, MC & H all of whom adored her.

For the last 5 years, Mama 7 Papa have collected J & H from school or kinder once or twice a week. Suddenly the variety of food in their pantry increased, "boat" sandwiches were made when ever H requested, ballet was practiced in the lounge room, and many a detailed chat about their day was shared between Mama and J.

JH & M shared their lives through trips between Bendigo & Melbourne, phone calls and photos. Granma was always excited to hear MC's latest piano recital, to follow JH's adventures at cubs and scouts, and to hear the latest antics of the chooks!

Since Mum's diagnosis in May 2 years ag, she showed true strength and courage. Never did she say "why me" or feel sorry for herself. Instead she tackled it face on, and turned what was to be six months into two years. Her strength and stubborness was no more evident than when in hospital before Christmas last year, when she told Meredith that she wouldn't make Christmas. Together they made a deal to have one more Christmas, and through her determination we enjoyed Easter as a family too.

We know mum genuinely appreciated all the support she was given during her illness, including from the St John of God oncology nurses, whom she called her angels.
Mum it has been an honour to have been able to call you mum.
Your strength is our inspiration. Your love our rock. We will always miss you and love you Mum. And we will keep the promise to look after Papa and Max.

(Max- the dog)
From the eulogy, co-written with my wonderful  sister Meredith, 17 May 2012.

Thursday, 26 April 2012


...we will be at the PO at 7:30 to do some craft (maybe), have a glass of wine (for those who are inclined) and have a good old chat!  The H & I snuck down to the PO last Thursday night, when we realised that with the youngest at cubs, and his big brother at school camp, we actually had 1 1/2 hrs child free time! So we shared the quince crumble (yum!), and the girl behind the bar said hi and asked when we would be back for craft group because she hadn't seen us for a while! So... see you there next Monday !  (30/4)

PS we will actually be talking about  what we will make for the school craft stall and possibly even making something. Plus we will try & work out a date to meet on a Saturday arvo at school for a big sewing session ie. involving sewing machines 'n' all!!!

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Back to school...

2 weeks of school holidays, and what do I have to show for it? One kids apron, promised weeks ago ( possibly months actually), and sewn up Saturday night (hey, the footy was on, what else was there to do?). New resolution - get some sewing done now that the footy will take over the telly most Friday & Saturday nights.
I did make MILES of bias binding to use for the neck strap & ties. I can use it for skirts & stuff, I figured I had a metre of navy gingham, so might as well slice up the lot. But so much for those plans of new skirts, and trying out some tunic tops...

Monday, 2 April 2012

Autumn days...

Loving this Autumn weather! I have been trying to ride my bike into the shops at least once a week. The Jedikid has a new grown-up sized mountain bike - with gears! ( And of course Tigerboy is a bit jealous and wants a bike with gears too now!). Found the bike on gumtree, and also recommend bikexchange to find a good second hand bike. The boys are out in the backyard now washing Tigerboy's old bike he grew out of last year, so we can take a photo & put it up for sale.
Planning on doing some skirt sewing in the hols, andtrying out some new recipes, but lots of cleaning up to do first! We have been inspired by watching River Cottage (6pm Thurs, ABC) and have dug out the bread machine. Weekend before last we made and ate 3 (small) loaves of bread in 2 days! Even bought some chia seeds and made our own chia bread, but I don't think we will be putting Bakers' delight out of business anytime soon!
2 great up coming markets to go to - Brunswick Town Hall on April 14 for the Sisters market; and the wonderful finders keepers market is in the Royal Exhibition centre on April 20/21.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Craft group next MONDAY

All being well we will be at the PO again 7:30 next Monday.

I have my year 10 school reunion in Bendigo this Saturday ( high schools in Bendigo are year 7-10, 'cos there is an amazing senior high school there, it was one of the first in Australia. The failed experiment of the Coburg Senior High could learn a lot from Bendigo Snr High!!!)

The reunion is supposed to be "dress up - 80's theme" (yeah, I'm gettin' old!) but it is one thing to dress up in full on 80's gear for a friend's 40th with your mates, and quite another to turn up in costume with a bunch of people you haven't seen for 10/20/30 years! So I will err on the side of caution and not go too over the top! Had a flick through my collection of old "Dolly" magazines still in my wardrobe at my parent's house for some dress-up inspiration.
PS. Nicole Kidman had seriously curly hair when she was a "Dolly" model in the 80's!!!

Friday, 2 March 2012

Felt & button necklace

I made this a while ago for a friend, along with one in red/black/grey for me. But the 1st was only made of crochet cotton & felt, and although I loved the look of it, it was too light and blew around in a breeze! So the 2nd one (above) was put on the back burner while I figured how to modify it too add a bit of weight. Finally, I decided to sew some buttons on the flower shapes (pairs of buttons, from & back) and it seems to work! Plus it adds to the look.
But I can't decide which is the quicker way to do it - sew the buttons on 1st (one at a time) before glueing the shapes together, or put the necklace together & sew the buttons in pairs, with the slight complication of sewing through the dried glue and coping with the occassional tangle. Hmm, have to try both methods & compare. Planning on making some for the school fete anyway - once I have the felt shapes cut, I can put it all on the good old "stable table" on my lap & make them up while watching the telly.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

The last race

I just watched "the last race" on the ABC, about organ donation. Beautiful, moving - I was crying through most of the show. One of my Dad's best mates (all-round great bloke, and an honorary uncle and to my sister and I when we were growing up) died waiting for a heart transplant. A school friend had a kidney transplant several years ago and which has turned her life around. My husband's phD supervisor and mentor also needed a kidney transplant but didn't make it.
Go over to Curly Pop's blog and have a read too.
Then talk to your family and sign up.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Just popping by... let you know craft group is on again next Monday 27th Feb at the PO. See you there!!!

Monday, 6 February 2012

School holiday sewing pt.1

I did manage some sewing in the holidays - here is a bag made for my dragon loving friend Cheryl. She LOVED it, yay!!!
Dragon fabric from the craft show last year, vinyl & denim from Rathdowne Remnants, lining & inner pocket fabric from GJ's. This is about the 4th bag I have made from the Sew Hip "modern messenger" pattern. Very easy to make (once I figured it out, their patterns/photos/instructions never quite match. I have given up buying the magazine now!).
CRAFT GROUP - back on at the PO next Monday 7:30-9pm. I will put it in the school newsletter, and gave it a plug at the prep parents' morning tea at school this morning too!

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Yarn bombing in Melbourne city square!

On our way in to Brickvention on Saturday, we came across a yarn bombing event in the city square! All the trees have been wrapped in beautiful knitted and crocheted pieces, including these gorgeous flowers! If you are heading into the city, stop by and have a look!
Brickvention was FANTASTIC of course, more about that next post. But one of the best things about it was that it provided motivation for the boys to FINALLY sort out their lego ( for about the first time ever without arguments/begging from me!!!), & they have had a major clean up and actually have room on the desk to play and build now!

Monday, 16 January 2012

Maker Faire last Saturday

We took the boys along to the maker faire last Saturday, it was really quite amazing! Lots of enthusiastic people showing off the amazing stuff they make in their sheds! Got to see the very cool MAKEDO cardboard creator kit in action - it's a set of joining tools, cardboard saw etc. safe for kids to use, to make cardboard boxes into all sorts creations! I was totally amazed by the 3D printer, I had seen the prototype on Catalyst on the ABC years ago, but to see one in action (and a home-made one at that!) was really mind blowing! Just goes to show you should never underestimate the power of imagination!
The Steampunk costumes were FANTASTIC! I love the book "The Difference engine" by Bruce Stirling, & William Gibson (who 1st coined the term "cyberpunk"); and the whole family loved watching "Going Postal" on the ABC recently (must find our Terry Pratchet books & read them again . The outfits on display - and worn by some people at the faire, looked like they had stepped out of one of those novels. Plus the designer and other people from clockworkbutterfly were so friendly, happy to pose for photos, talk about the outfits and how they are made etc. The designer said someone will contact her and say "can you make this dress for me? just like the one in this movie/picture/ book I read..." and she can do it! I am only just learning to read basic sewing patterns - this lady is AMAZING!

The only disappointing stall at the Faire, was the lady from the Steiner school, who just sat there doing some needle felting. She had some gorgeous felted people, trees etc. on display, but was a bit reluctant to actually talk to anyone! I said her creations were like the ones at the friendship tree in Northcote - she hadn't heard of it , and had to write it down! A man was interested in felting & thought his daughter & grandkids might like to know about it, & wanted to know more - all she did was give him a handwritten card for her blog! (Which I had a looked at when I got home and although it has some cute photos there are virtually no words ie. no tutorials, no lists of suppliers, handy hints or anything - just a label for the photos) Nikki has more felting info on her sewing blog! I told him that tools etc are available from Spotlight, but the wool is cheaper from the yarn barn in Coburg.
But thankfully all the other people there were a lovely, friendly, incredibly creative bunch, happy to talk about their passion for home- built technology! AND we got to see the very cool "robot" hands which can spin & solve a rubiks cube in under 10 seconds. I could only ever manage the bottom & middle layer, and that was with the book next to me. For the top layer I had to cheat & get my pocket knife out to take it apart!

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Lazy January...

Made another batch of yummy lemon butter for a last minute Christmas present, it is so easy to make! Homegrown lemons (my Dad's lemon tree this time) and lovely brown eggs from our chooks of course!

Finally feel like the holidays are starting, this will be the first full week of me being home with the boys. Lots of sitting around in our PJ's & watching new Pokemon dvd's. Sitting on the couch watching the bunny run laps and do mad leaps in the air. Have to watch the little bugger though - last night it bit a button off the tv remote & ate it!!! Thankfully it was the settings button we never really use!
Hoping to get some sewing done too - now I have sorted out the massive pile of "stuff to be fixed" and the UFO's too. But I am itching to make some new skirts & bags. Excited about the maker faire we are heading to this Saturday! And of course we also have our tickets for Brickvention the following weekend, and the MSO Dr Who concert in Feb! wondering if I should try to print a Tardis t-shirt, or maybe make up a fez hat (I think I spotted a pattern over at konstant kaos) for the boys to wear!

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Happy New Year 2012!

Welcome to 2012! Dunno where 2011 went, I'm sure I it was just here somewhere, then I turned around and suddenly it just disappeared!
Things have been kind of busy, with the mad rush to finish up at work for the year - try and catch up with all my families, 2 new referrals to make contact with in December - both of which involve booking interpreters for. Plus Christmas stuff, end of the school year.
My mum has been really ill & in hospital ( but came home just before Christmas & is slowly but steadily recovering), so I have been re-aquainting myself with country train travel a lot lately. Got some knitting a few weeks ago, but it is a bit too hot to knit at the moment.
You know it is really summer when you can't bear to even look any cool weather clothing - wool, polar fleece, even long sleeved t-shirts seem too much to even contemplate ever wearing again when the weather is pushing 35+!!!
One thing about train travel is reading - a great excuse to buy some extra magazines to read on the train. I have found a couple of really nice English craft magazines- "Mollie makes", "Craft Seller", and "Making" . I saw a copy of "making" in the hols in Leongatha of all places, but have yet to find anywhere near home which sells it. The newsagent in Bendigo where my Dad buys his lotto ticket has the best range of craft mags I have seen!
My new year's resolution - get more sewing/crafting done of course! And finally do something about renovating our house!