Sunday, 15 January 2017

Crossing items off the list....

It is way past my bedtime, but I need to quickly post before I head to bed. I have had a productive weekend, and made the most of cooler weather. This photo shows what I did yesterday, although I still need to put down some mulch, but that might wait. I am crossing this item off my list, which was there in 2016, and now 2017, I am calling it done. I will need to keep it watered in the next few days, as the temperature is rising, after a lovely few days. Hopefully I don't have too many failures in this lot, as they are supposed to be hardy. I know it's a risk planting in January, but I had to shift them for the air con to go in, so it seemed silly to make 2 moves. Wish me luck.

Last night I started on the task of finding photos of all the quilts I have made since I started back in 1996, and posted some to the blog. After I came home from church today, I was motivated to keep working on that, and I have spent all afternoon at the computer, except for a small time out watering and setting up the sprinkler on the garden above.

I mentioned that I had digital photos from 2004, and printed ones before that. I did keep an album of sorts in those years, and have now scanned all those photos, and blogged them all in the Quilt Gallery page. I did not post photos of about 40 cot quilts that I have made. But there are about 100 quilts, and a few assorted small items on that page for you to look at now. Some I can work out a date for, but others its a guess. It certainly has been a time consuming task, as while I was going back, I found lots of interesting photos, and sent SMS messages to a few people with these photos!! So imagine me doing the texting on the mobile, adding photos and information on the computer, and scanning photos, all at the same time!!  A real trip down memory lane it was! (Seem to be doing that a bit lately, but it goes with the territory of sorting your life, doesn't it?) I can remember about 6 quilts that I made, including my first ever quilt, that I don't seem to have a photo for, so will chase them up soon and add them later. So I guess that brings my tally of quilts made, including cot quilts not posted, to about 150 or thereabouts. All since 1996, and not a lot recently. I do have quite a few PHD's to finish, so might make a list of these soon. And I am almost ready to cross the "sort my quilt photos" item off my list, so I feel pretty good about that.

Back to the machine tomorrow, and another week starts.

Blessings, From Jude

Blog housekeeping

I have spent some time recently updating pages of this blog. If you want to check out the Quilt Gallery page, I have loaded photos of about 23 of my quilts. This will be a work in progress, as I dig into my photo files for pics of my quilts. I am trying to compile a list of quilts that I have made over the years. I have a lot of photos, taken before I had a digital camera, and these will need to be scanned one day. These will be from 1996 to 2004. I went back to 2007 on my computer last night, and found the ones I have posted today. There are still more to come yet from these dates. I still need to go back further to 2004 for more. I did find that since 2010, I have not made many quilts, or perhaps I should say, not finished many quilts!!? One of my "to do" things on my list!

I have also updated the scheduled retreats page.

And I have changed the reading list of blogs on my sidebar. There were a lot from people that had not blogged for a long time, so they have been deleted, and I have added the ones I have been reading that were not there. You wonder why they are not blogging, whether life has changed, or something more serious.

That's all for now. Enjoy your Sunday.

Blessings, From Jude

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Today's project

Because the weather is so cool and motivating today, I decided to get out into the garden and plant the area I posted last night. And because the airconditioner unit will be going in soon, and I would have had to move all these pots because they were along that wall, it seemed like it was a job that needed to be done. The days are going to heat up again this week, so action was needed. I love these cooler days. I think I have said that before, haven't I?
This was my starting point. The old wheelbarrow frame was one that my 87 year old neighbour had given me to put in the garden at The Sanctuary. I moved it into my back yard in September 2015, and it has sat there ever since. Now it's back in the garden again. I shifted the rocks that were lined up in the photo yesterday. I would have loved to have quite a few more of these, but made do with what I had.

 Now this is my collection, and decisions needed to be made where to plant them. I am not sure what size each plant will grow to, so it is tricky. It will be interesting to see how it all works out "in the wash". .... Where did that saying come from anyway?.... 

And this is at the end and all the empty pots. I think a lot of those plants will be so happy to get out of the containers, as they were quite root bound, so hope they grow.  More photos will come later, as still a bit of finishing off to do yet, with some edging plants. And I will lay some newspaper, and straw down to mulch.

Well I am quite happy with my days work, and it's another job I can cross of the "to do" list.
Now to work out which job on the list I shall tackle next. Sorry if you came to the blog for quilting "stuff", as it has been lots of house renos lately. But as this is a story of my life that I am getting printed, I need to record all this too.

Might put my feet up and watch the news, and read some of my book. I am not really "into" the book I am reading, so not sure if I shall finish it or not. DD3 gave it to me for Christmas, and most of it is good, but I am finding it hard to read the violent bits. The story line is good, and it must be me, as I know that that "stuff" happens in this world, but I am happy to put my "head in the sand" and not read about it. I said this to my mum, and she agreed, and said I must have got that from her! I confess that even a movie, or TV show, when it gets to some parts, I have to get up and walk away and come back when it's over that bit. Is there anyone else out there like this?

Catch ya next time,

Blessings, From Jude

Friday, 13 January 2017

The difference a year makes!

Time for that post I promised to show the progress of my garden on the laundry side. You can see from the following 2 photos, what a jungle it was, and not really an area that you wanted  to see much. And the only time I really went out there, was to get wood for the heater. I did not have a clothesline, and used to hang my clothes on the airer, inside, or use the dryer. You can see that the honeysuckle had grown right over the path......

 and the tree right outside the laundry door, was right onto the house roof. This also caused some tree roots to occasionally block up the pipes which were all down this side of the house. These 2 photos were taken at end of 2015.

In February, 2016 a good friend, who loves to get loose with a chainsaw, came and chopped down that tree.

In the foreground you can see an almost dead rosemary bush, which really added to the "ambience"!

The mess still being cleaned up. This end corner took a long time to get to.

So when the tree came out, it really opened up the side, and of course you could see right into the neighbours carport. The fence extensions that I purchased just added to the height of the fence and the privacy of my yard. My plan was to plant creepers all along the fence. But the tree had left a lot of roots that went for "miles". A bit, lot of digging was needed to get them out, before I could plant anything. And I am pleased to report that I have not needed to call the plumber in to clear the pipes at all since the tree went.

I had a nice little pile of second hand bricks in the back yard, so decided they would make a nice edging, to keep everything contained. This is the start of my "bricklaying", and also the planting of various plants. Since this photo I have also added more fence extensions down along the fence. You can see that the honeysuckle has been pruned right back.

 The view down towards the tank.

The bricks are moving further along, and the plants are all very new. I have planted 2 creepers along the fence.

I got this far with the bricks, and it took a long time to get this last corner done.

And then in the spring my sweet peas looked like this, until a big wind came along and blew them over. They did eventually bloom in lots of colours.

You can see how far the bricks have got, and this is end of spring.

 The bricks were finally finished the week before Christmas 2016!

The next few photos were taken the day after Christmas, and still a bit of colour.

You can see that I now have a clothesline, that means no clothes hanging around inside! And a table and chairs in the corner, which makes a nice spot to sit and "smell the roses", and listen to the many birds that are in the trees nearby. While I might not be able to smell the roses, which are on the other side of the house, there was certainly plenty of perfume earlier from the sweet peas, the honeysuckle and the carnations. It is now an area that I like to spend time in, but it is not a space that is visible to anyone else coming to my house, unless we are doing a garden tour!

This bath got over filled with water, and I was thinking I should have planted rice, as these plants don't look quite so good today. I might need more drainage holes in the bath, which was taken out of the bathroom when it was renovated last January.

Tucked in behind the tank, is also another recycled item from the bathroom renovation! This creeper is flowering very prettily in it.

 This is today, and you can see my piles of rubbish waiting to go into the green bin, from my pruning and trimming efforts this week. You can just see some red cannas about to flower on the right, although most of the spring colour has gone.

And this is my next project. I have a good collection of hardy plants, (I hope), mainly succulents that are going to be planted under this tree, very soon!!? The weather is cool for a couple of days, so might be a good project. (And you know I need more projects, don't you?)

 I have finished the binding on that quilt today, so hope to be working on custom for a few days now. And soon it will be time to get myself organised for the first retreat of the year, when the girls arrive for an Aussie Retreat on January 25th. There is lots planned for 2017, and I have made some changes and additions on the scheduled retreat page of the blog. There is one place left in the house for the Aussie retreat, so would love to hear from you if you might like to join us.

Catch ya next time.

Blessings, From Jude

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Back at the machine

In my last post I said I was going back to "work" this week, and Monday morning I cleaned, and oiled Max, and pressed the switches, and off we went. I have had some allover quilting jobs to do, so decided to start there, and ease back into it.

This is the first one, which I am currently putting the binding on. I will photograph it properly later. I don't get asked to do very many bindings, but it is a good job to do, while Max has been quilting away on other quilts. I am giving the fingers a  bit of a rest at the moment, so thought I better check in with a blog post.

On Tuesday we had an "impromptu" Angels sewing day. Pat and I had planned to have a day and quilt a few of the quilts that had been made last year, before the year gets too busy. It has been awhile since Pat has used Max, so it would be a bit of a refresher for her. I had a brilliant thought, that instead of loading all the different quilts, that we could stitch the backings together first, and then would only have to load one, although a rather long one. There were 7 quilts in the queue, and 4 of them had a similar size backing, so these were sewn into one length. You can see just how "fat" the roll was as we came to the last of the quilts on the frame. We even used up pieces of wadding, and instead of sewing them together, we just butted them together under the top, and once they are quilted, it is all secure.

During the morning, another lady happened to call in with a quilt for me to quilt. So she stayed to make bindings for the quilts on the machine. And then another friend called in, so there were 4 of us, all getting the job done. And when they were finished all folded ready with the bindings, and I was going to photograph the days work, I was "nicely" told that the photograph would have me as well, and it was to go on the blog!! So here I am. 

They are now being bound by some other angels, ready for donating to recipients. And we have a head start for the year.

The following picture is of a filing cabinet that I have cleared out of my room, and had no further use for. It was posted on the local buy, sell and swap facebook page, and it was only minutes before I had a buyer! One more thing decluttered!

And I am sorry that this photo is blurry, but I was excited to make my first sale of some of that ribbon that I posted last week!

There are more quilts that have been finished, but no photographs yet. The next on the machine will be custom, so my easy week is over. Still a bit of sorting happening in between the quilts. I still need to reorganise the shelves on the wall behind Max, but will leave this until after the air conditioner has been installed. (This might happen sooner if it is delivered in time!) Then I will have no excuse for stopping work at 3pm on a hot day!

The summer temperatures have been so up and down, but I am loving the nice days when I feel so much more motivated. Early mornings I have been out watering, and pruning and tidying up the last of the spring flowers. My sweet peas got pulled out this week, after we collected lots of the seed pods.

Hope your week has been a good one, and you are staying cool, (or warm if you are in the northern world!)

Blessings, From Jude

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Reporting on my week

I can see that it will be a week tomorrow since my last post, and I have had 2 ladies tell me they have been checking for a post. Lots has been happening in the last few days, including a trip over the border.

The weather for the last 3 days has been HOT, HOT, and you know that I wilt when that happens. I worked through until lunch time, after watering the garden early morning. The air con in my studio is past it's prime, and was only designed for when my room was half the size. This makes it "not so pleasant" to be working after lunch, so have had a few spells sitting in front of the lounge air con, and not doing very much, in between my continuing sorting. Yesterday it peaked at 42 deg, and night did not bring a lot of relief either. Today is much better at around the 30 deg mark, and should stay there for the rest of the week, In an effort to be more productive during the summer, I am getting a new air conditioner in my work room, which will also cool the sewing room next door. This will be installed in the next 2 weeks I hope.

Tuesday lunch time DD2 and I went on a little road trip to Melbourne to visit with DD3 and DSIL. It was very rare, and lovely to spend 6 hours in one on one conversation with her, as usually there are other family when we see each other. It was a special catch up time for us both. And it was nice to be driven somewhere, and to be able to take photos.

 Heading onto the Westgate Bridge.

And down into the city of Melbourne.

And into the Burnley Tunnel, although the colour is not good. I had been through here with DD3 several times, on our way to the train station, and last time, I casually asked what highway we were going under through the tunnel, and was told we were under the Yarra river! Now this is a very long tunnel, and I'm not sure I want to think about what could happen. And my "funny" DSIL told me with a very straight face, that they have quite a few leaks in the tunnel!!!???

 We had a good visit, ate a few meals out, went shopping, and stayed 2 nights, travelling back on Thursday, just before it got very HOT. The last few trips I have gone on the train, and I hope to be able to drive myself one day, so was very observant about the roads we took. (And of course I will have Tom to help me!) We left by 6am that morning, and it was fine weather, but part way back we went through lightening, thunder, and heavy rain.

This is called Green Lake, but looks quite blue to me! But we did pass Pink Lake later, and that did look very pink.

 On the way to Horsham, and the Grampians on the left of the highway.

And this is the reason for our trip to Melbourne. It is 2 years now since DD3 purchased the shop stock from Maney's of Mundulla. You can read about that post called, Newventure if you click on the link. Her work committments are changing from January, and she will have less time to spend on her Ebay Store, which is linked on the side of his page. So I have brought some of the remaining stock back here to Bordertown, to help her out. She still has plenty of stock, and will continue to list on Kiki Fabrics store, so click on the link to find a bargain.

The last few days I have been stacking fabrics, sorting ribbons, braids, laces and assorted "stuff". I have a few ideas in my head for some of this, (as long as I live to be 500!) We use a lot of this in the Embellished Quilts classes I teach, which will continue this year,  and I have ideas for some more of my own quilts like this. (I think there are a couple in my PHD pile!) And I hope to sell some of this as well.

It was a challenge to work out how to sort the ribbons, and I would love to have them out on display, but these underbed containers will work well, as you can see what it is in the container easily. And they are stacked neatly in the space under Max.

This is only just a few of the laces that I have.

All of the above has been sorted, and packed into containers. The fabric is in those empty shelves you saw in my last blog post, and those shelves now look like this. Some of this will find it's way into future Pick a Case Mystery retreats, and maybe it will be just the fabric that someone is looking for. I did have some of this already, and have more on order, so will be adding to it over time. I plan on selling excess kits from the Mystery retreats.

So if you are looking for fabric, lace, ribbons, braids, ric rac, beading, needles or thread, I may just have what you are looking for! 😉

I have had 3 weeks holiday from quilting, and intend to get back to Max tomorrow. I still have a lot of sorting yet, although it is organised as it is. Can't say I have had much of a holiday, but as my mother said, I have been doing different things!!? And it certainly feels great to get this much done, and have some order in my chaos of STUFF!

Max will have a clean out in the morning, which will include taking the sides off the computer towers, and cleaning out the dust, and an oil routine and needle change. I have a large allover quilt to load to ease back into my working week.

If you have read this far, thankyou.

From Jude