Friday, December 21, 2012

Snail Mail

Hi everyone,  Seems I can no longer add photos to my blog without having to pay a fee and I don't really wish to start doing that...... so not sure just yet what I will do in that respect.  However on another note,  I have to say that I just love snail mail.   The group I am part of is opened  for a very short time to receive some new members.  It does have a couple of stipulations - you need to be female, Christian and be willing to commit to snail mail and round robins (with the occassional swap thrown in) for at least 1 year.  If you think this interest you and you would love to see some snail mail arriving in your mail box just let me know by either a comment left here, an email to me    or you can click on the link in the sidebar (make sure you tell a bit about yourself and where you live.   The snail mail group covers oversees as well as within Australia.

Monday, November 19, 2012

I've been a little slack...........

Slack in posting that is!  Sometimes it just seems to take forever to get my photos uploaded onto blogger!!   And so I've been slack and not posted............. but I have been busy as well!

I managed to do up a few kitchen items for a friends daughter who is getting married on the 1st December.  Since she wasn't having a kitchen tea, I thought it would be a nice treat to get some homemade kitchen bits in the mail and I was pleased to hear that she loved them.

I've also managed to get all 3 grandchildrens "footy" crocheted rugs made up in readiness to post for christmas - Jacey only likes pink and purple and "not footy" LOL

Now it's time to get on with the other items needing to be made up in readiness for christmas..............  How is everyone else going?
Pray you all have a great week.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Market Day Finds

Sunday was Market Day at Yarrawonga and Pete and I headed off for our monthly visit - it operates on the 3rd Sunday of each month.  Often we walk around getting a bit of veg and the dog treat for Scruffy, but this week.................Look what I came home with

This cute little bicycle is just the right size for one of Teddy Bears to sit on, and goes well with the rocking chair and pram.................. Pete was wonderful and purchased it for me - although that could have had something to do with the fact that he was getting a number of cray nets from the same place LOL

Did I mention that place also had this amazing basket!!!  I have a thing for baskets............ what can I say???

And the Iris's inside the basket cam from another shop............ I had been on a garden walk about the day before and all the Iris's are out in all the gardens down here and looking so wonderful.  I do already have a few............. but I have decided I'd like to put a row of them in front of our front verandah.

Having a hubbie who is super efficient at "haggling" the price of things............ I ended up with these 3 wonderful lamps for under what 2 were originally going to cost me - and they were already a good price (so I thought ).
Unfortunately I can't download the photo right now - I have been trying the past few hours, so will just post without the photo for now

So I've now done a slight re arrange of the lounge room to incorporate the new item..............

Sunday, October 14, 2012

At last it's out!

What a busy weekend I've had!  Finally yesterday after quite the struggle, I managed to get the dishwasher out of the kitchen.  It's an old one that was here when we bought the house  over 2 years ago and it looked like it would probably cause lots of drama if we tried using it.  The original plan was to replace it, however after 2 1/2 yrs there have really only been a handful of times that I've wished it was working.... so I figured that since we are so short on storage space here, that I would be better taking it out and using the empty space for storage!  Let me tell you it was not as easy as I had thought...... old, the cupboards had been built to not alow it to be removed/replaced easily, it had no metal sides or top (as I discovered)..... I had to cut pipes and the electric cord!!!  But I do now have an empty space :)  I had thought I would put the microwave in there on top of a shelf..... I just have to wait now to have a hole put in the cupboard so the power cord can feed through!  We have found this house to be somewhat of a challenge each time you think you might easily do something!

I moved on with my day and got some much needed baking done since we were out of biscuits........ jam drops, macadamia biscuits and some with just a choc melt in the top

I managed to get the lawns mowed and a little gardening in between hanging out the numerous loads of washing that had been sitting waiting while our bore pump (which supplies our household water) was getting fixed ....... and then replaced!!! We now have a new one

And yes, I did get to work on some of my crochet and sewing as well....... and some decluttering and cleaning....... busy, busy :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

After much Ado...........

Rain outside, well icy rain actually and freezing cold today had made for the perfect day (since I'm on a "home" day today), to get some sewing and crochet done. 
I managed to sort through my stash and pull out a few pieces to make up some pot mits - one or two for me to use here, and a few that will be used for christmas gifts. 

To go with the pot holders, I thought I'd make up some little kitchen hand towels with a twist....... I took a trip up to Albury yesterday and went to Spotlight where I purchased some plain face washers ( and a bit more wool for a few other projects....)....... then added some matching fabric to them....... what do you think?? 

On another note altogether........... we've been having quite the spot of trouble with our bore pump since July!  It supplies our house with running water (we also have a gravity feed tank for our drinking water).  The pump has been in & out for repairs and so we have had a couple of methods of dealing with things while it's been out of order (buckets & jugs, and then thanks to a wonderful neighbour - a garden hose connected to our place)........ anyhow - it could no longer be fixed and so we now have a lovely new one!!  May I also say how our water pressure has also improved - what a blessing!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

A bit of Cuteness

I had some fabric left over from making Jacey the little bag for her birthday, and knowing I have to get her gifts wrapped and posted off tomorrow or Tuesday in time for her 4th birthday this week... well, I decided to make her a skirt to match her bag

I managed to get made up pretty quickly and was so happy with how it turned out I decided to spoil her with this one as well................

Apart from sewing this afternoon, I did get into the garden this morning when it was a nice and sunny and got in some more potatoes, while Pete was busy in the vegie garden picking more of the peas........

And right now, the sunday roast is in the oven and I have a date and walnut loaf  I'm trying out........  Pray your Sunday evening is lovely,   Hugs, Sharm

Thursday, September 27, 2012

A great day

Managed to get this little bag made today ready to send our little grand daughter Jacey for her 4th birthday next week!  It was one of those "make it up as you go" type of bags. 

 I wasn't sure which fabric to use, so I picked out a few from my stash, lined them up and took a photo on my phone, then sent it to my DIL to show to young Jacey and get her to pick out her favouite one! 

They live 3000kms away, so it's nice to be able to use technology at times to help shorten that distance :)
And since it's springtime in the garden, I thought I'd share some of my bulbs and pansies with you...... and yes, that is wood ash - I find it works really well when used as a pathway through my gardens!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

In case this interests you...........

If you are into getting your house in order, want some cleaning tips, recipe sharing , homestead binder and such............ then the giveaway on a new blog may interest you...........       

Saturday, September 15, 2012

On a lovely Spring Day............

You just want to get outside and into the garden after that long winter with cold winds!

I decided the silverbeet that is now a couple years old and growing in a bunch in the vegie garden could come out....... And since it's mostly used for the chooks, it could maybe go in front of their yard.............
So out came the matic and the shovel...... I was surprised just how much was in the clump......
But at least it looks good now, and the chooks can nibble at it through the fence, and best of all, I don't need to head to the vegie garden first and then to their pen!
Cause that all meant Pete was kept busy fixing up taps and watering connections to ensure all the garden gets watered over the next few months........
Also managed to pull this little bird bath out that was hidden away in some bushes and fix it up where it can be used............. one of the local kookaburras has already been down to check it out this afternoon............. I'll have to share that photo another time since it's taken 4hrs to download these photos already......... ahhh the joys of living where you can't get good internet access!

Saturday, September 8, 2012


I've managed to get the little crocheted footy rug finished - this one will be for our grandson Jaxson for Christmas.  Now you can't have 1 heading to a family of 3 grandies, so of course I'm now working on getting one made for both Jacey and Lil Jarryn! 

 Since Jace isn't too keen on footy, hers is getting made with typical "girlie" (and her favouite) colours..........

I'm still trying to track down a face washer with "the cowboys" (North Qld) footy team for Lil Jarryn, since that's his favouite team!

On a totally different note altogether............ for those who have been asking me to share about various things around the home including homestead binder and such....... I've put that over to a separate blog for now.............   

Hope you are all having a great weekend............ I'm heading out now to feed the local kookaburras

Thursday, August 23, 2012

If You've been wondering .................

Have you missed me?  Well I've been a tad bit busy in the kitchen of late.............

This is some of my choc mint soap and chocolate lip balms!  I'm busy getting my stocks up as orders start coming in............. If you are interested in what else I'm making head over to my Soap Blog... ......  and maybe even decide to "follow" me and lend some of your awesome support!
Hugs to you all,  Sharm

Saturday, July 28, 2012

My Soaps

After having spent the entire afternoon trying desperately to work out how to get my little soap and natural cleaning line onto facebook........ hmmm, seems I set up a whole separate identity and then worked out it was meant to be a "page" connected to my own FB identity!  I've been struggling with it all for a few weeks, but not had the time to just sit at my VERY slow internet connection (no broadband here!!) and work it out!!  Finally, success........... so the facebook link is currently right at the top left here  "Hazelmere Cottage".  I also have a blog for  Hazelmere Cottage as well and would love to have you come and visit and take a look around at some stage.  It's been very difficult as I don't have funds to pour into getting it up and going really well and certainly cannot afford the hefty product liability insurance.  The soaps are made using olive oil, essential oils and herbs as the main ingredients (no nasties!).  The candle melts are made using bees wax.  Anyhow, I was just sooo excited that I finally worked it out, I just had to tell you all about it and perhaps I will see you at one of these places - do leave a comment if you come over as I plan on having a giveaway to clelbrate - so keep watching :)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Getting on with Things..................

It's been rather interesting around here since Thursday evening when the water pump decided to break down.  For us this means no running water to anywhere in the house except for our 1 little drinking tap that is connected to the small gravity fed water tank.  For those of you not used to having water tanks or bores to rely on - no pump =  no hot  running water, toilets flushing by the push of a button, showers or washing machines.  
 So it's been a trip back to the past around here..........   We are just thankful we can access the tank water from the gravity fed tank so we at least have water.... filling buckets for the toilet flushing and the old fashioned jug for the bathroom......... and since it's winter and we thankfully have the old wood heater, we have our own supply to be able to pour into the bathroom basin for washes, the kitchen sink for dishes etc etc.

So in the absense of running water, I've been busy getting on with other things..........

These 3 little beauties are already winging their way to New Zealand for my 3 nieces who all have their birthdays in July (just different days & ages ).   I had heaps of fun making them and plan on doing one for my granddaughter for her birthday in October.  Today I also managed to finsih off a little beanie (photo yet to come) that will be going to a friend from work who recently had a little baby.
The postie arrived on Thursday with some wonderful packages full of goodies from 2 swaps - a private one through my snail mail group where we sent some yarn & material to celebrate our 5th anniversary (yep, 5 years of penpalling)..... this is the collection from all of those :

And 2 other packages were part of a swap from a facebook group called Magic Yarn Ball Swap.  It currently only has US girls & me - being the only Aussie on board.  The international postage is a killer for both the US girls & myself, so I'm keen to know if there are any Aussie gals out there that have facebook and are looking to be involved in swaps that don't necessarily mean having to complete a project (just getting bits and pieces together around a theme ).  If that sounds like you then let me know - or look for the group on facebook.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Apparently He Likes It !

The little rug made it safely across the waters to Monicas home in the US  for her baby Matthew.............

Who apparently is quite happy with it!  YAH!   Monica and I have been penfriends for quite a good number of years now, so it was great to be able to spoil her little family.  So glad you all loved it Monica!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A finish already!

Just into July, and I've got something finished already??  This little play rug is headed off to a penpal friend of mine who had a baby a few months back.  I fell down in my quilting - I always do - I'm just not good at the "sandwich it altogether" part - But it was made with love and prayers for little Matthew and his great mum and dad!  They love their dogs and this just seemed such appropriate materia! 

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Mission Accomplished!

Don't you just love it when you can look around and see your home nice and clean and tidy! 
 Let me tell you, it sure wasn't looking that way this morning - You know how it is when everyone comes in and dumps bits here and there, piles grow and dust seems to accumulate with it. I looked around this morning and it was driving me crazy - more so after having spent all that time and effort getting the house in Townsville all clean and set up ready for tenants! I was so exhausted when I got back (and it's taken me till today to recover from it) - well I'm afraid mine fell apart - but not anymore! 

Whenever the cleaning seems to be overwhelming and you get that feeling of " I don't know where to even begin"? -  Well, That's when I start with a corner of a room - usually the lounge room since I'll be able to see that straight away and focus on what a difference it makes!  Today I started in the corner of the lounge where I've made a little "mini office type of area".  I have a small $29 desk, the filing cabinet and a small table on which I have filing baskets to sort out the paperwork.  So I started my cleaning here this morning.....

 It must have been making quite a difference cause when Hubbie arrived home just after lunch time from having worked all morning, he looked around and grabbed his pile of bits and pieces to take out to his shed and then brought in a wonderful big load of firewood to fill up the basket, and stoked up the fire ready to sit and relax (the lounge/ living and kitchen area were looking good by then)  And I moved on to do our bedroom and the bathroom.  (The laundry and spare room are for another day LOL)

- and now, everything is nice and clean, wood items have been oiled down with natural orange oil today, floors had a dash of essential lavender oil added to the water before mopping, dusting done, piles from dumping grounds have been addressed!  Oil burners and candles are sending a delicious fragrance throughout the house and giving a wonderful feeling of "now sit, relax, enjoy" kind of mood! 
So I guess now that is all done, (and it's raining outside - so no gardening today lol), It must be time to choose one of those baskets of crochet to pick up and continue on with.  As per usual, I'm in the midst of several projects - Is there another way???
Seems this photo has turned out a little blury - but you can still see the baskets of projects at various stages
Another little bag almost finished for one of my nieces for her birthday in July, the Tigers Rug in progress for little Jaxson for Christmas (yes, I'm getting ahead this year and starting work on projects for Christmas before I find out there are only 2 weeks left and no time!) I also will need to do a footy rug for each of the other 2 grandies! Next basket contains a shrug I'm knitting for myself and the basket at the back near the window has the very start of another blanket and some "ideas" for other projects.  Talking of little crocheted baskets....... I have 3 nieces to make one each for (all from the same family, Sister Kathy and BIL Jim - and would you believe each of these little girls have their birthday in July!)  The pressure is on! 

The first was finished a few weeks back - I blogged about it then (This will be for the eldest), the one above will be for the youngest - That leaves the middle little precious............. Luckily, during a trip down the Towns main street yesterday I happened on this little bit of inspiration.............. I guess this will be basket number 3!
And now my friends, I'm off to enjoy a cuppa, while I sit and relax with some yarn and a hook :)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Back from Townsville

I've had a quick trip back up to Townsville in order to take the house up there back off the market (which has currently crashed through its boots and the only "kind of" offer came in $50,000 less than what we paid for it) - hence it needed to go back onto the rental market to get let out.  At least that way we are only having to pay part of the mortgage on it each week (as well as our own morgage here of course).  So a trip was needed by either Pete or myself to assess what really needed to be done and get it in order for a condition report.  Unfortunately the very cool cubby house had white ant damage, so it was deemed to be knocked down.  Weeding of gardens, small repairs (like washers and reseating of some taps, smoke alarms have to be changed over with new tenants, the dishwasher was removed, the skirting board that Pete had taken off to fit in the fridge was put back on, the pool was turned back to blue - and apparently due to awesome red tape - needed a new pool safety certificate, including a new latch for the pool gate; the carpets just couldn't be salvaged and so some rental style cheap as possible carpets with "give me the choice of what you have on stock so you can lay them before I fly out" choice was made.   Jaron took 2 days off work to give me a hand, and we had our old neighbours from over the back come to give a hand with cleaning and fixing of things when they realized just what a big job we had to undertake in just 4 days!  The row of tiles that the "tenants from hell" had removed during the first 6 months we had the house for rent back 18months ago or so needed attention????? 

The answer lay in a couple of bags of cement - the "just add water, yes you can mix it in a plastic bucket with a garden trowel if you are very careful" kind of cement - which Jaron was able to seal in the tiles and did a great job - especially when you consider his tool was a tiny bit of wood left over from doing the skirting repair job! 

It was great being able to spend time with my grandchildren in between and at the end of each day.  I had taken up a crochet hook and couple of balls of yarn to do up a little scarf for each of them and managed to get all 3 done while I was there!  Little Jarryn (LJ) was so excited with his he took it to school and became the highlight of the classroom!  Nay (my DIL) was quite taken in watching how quickly the scarfs took shape, so I suggested I could teach her - if I got the chance to get some ordinary type of yarn to use (in order to see what you are doing).......... Nay had the wool ready for me the next evening LOL   I am soooooo proud of her, she had mastered both chain and double crochet within 15 mins and was "hooked"!  You know the drill girls, staying up to enjoy a bit of hooking LOL   Before I left - actually about an hour or so before I was to leave and get on the plane I taught her the Treble stitch (these are the Aust/English versions).  I should have grabbed some photos but forgot to!!
And on another note........... before I headed to the airport, whilst in Melbourne I managed to get to a packaging plant to check out some containers for my other soap products.  I really do want to give my little business a go - you can see the latest at my business blog (which I'm trying to revamp at present- in between everthing else)  and I've also got the page attached to my name on facebook- which I'm trying to work out how people can find it???  I'll keep you updated on that one LOL............. but right now, it's time to head off to work at the hospital, pray you all have a great day, Hugs Sharm

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Thanks Jacey !

I got an "SOS" call from my DIL on Thursday night letting us know that our darling little 3 1/2yr old grandaughter "Miss Jacey" had decided to give herself a haircut............. to the point where they had to shave her head!  This was the type of hair that has taken all this time to just make it into a little pony tail and her mum was heartbroken - as most of us can associate with!  So Grandma has come to the rescue in a fashion.............. I decided to get out my crochet hook and get started on a couple of little head bands to help.  

 They must be ok, cause when I went into our local shop with them to get some "feature" buttons to add to the centre of the flowers, the shop owner asked if she could order 3 for her own granddaughter :)  So it seems I'm now making a few extras to sell !
As you can see, I had to find a willing model as 'Miss Jacey' lives 3000 kms away and won't yet have received her package that I posted out yesterday.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

This was Fun!

It's always fun to try something new, something I had wanted to do for ages but had no idea we had one of these places relatively close by!  So Stace took me up to the place and we had a great time - although my arms did feel a little "jelly like" afterwards! LOL
Harness on & halfway up the wall......

Made it!

Stace on her way back down.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Left overs Turn Fab

I stumbled upon a fantastic crocheted bag that could be made with lots of left overs.............. ok, so instead of left overs I went and bought a whole rainbow coloured collection of yarn so I could have a go at making up a few of these little bags to have ready for some birthday gifties for my grand daughter and little nieces later this year!  It was super easy and I'm really pleased with how it's come up.  Aren't the little flowers soooo cute! I loved making them and can see alot more flowers are going to be getting made with left over scraps!!  Head over to Attic 24 to find the pattern.

After being relatively inactive on the crochet front for a number of years, up until I got the bug for the dishcloths last year...... it's nice to begin branching out again with some nice easy patterns that give such a great reward...  Thans again Lucy for sharing your pattern with us.


And if anyone is wondering about how well the crocheted dishcloths go....... I have a couple just now beginning to fall apart after a year of very hard work!  Each night they get thrown into the wash basket (sooner if I've been doing lots of cleaning with them during the day) - so they work great & look so much nicer on the kitchen sink than the old "chux cloth"!

Last night we had roast chicken for dinner and we had a bit left over from it, so I decided to jazz it up a bit and hey presto........ left over chicken turns into chicken vol e vonts!

It was super easy............ a bit of butter or marg into the frying pan, add sliced mushrooms and very finely sliced broccolli, a bit of salt, pepper to taste & approx 1/4 tsp of curry powder. Saute/ fry till the vegies are looking tender, then add a bit of plain flour to the pan (I added a couple tablespoons) & stir in - now take the pan off the heat while you add a bit of water - small amounts & stir it in so you don't get lumps forming.  About 1/3 cup water.  Now add milk to tthe pan, coontinue to stir it in and place back on the heat - keep stirring & add milk to make into a thickened sauce.  Once you are fairly happy with it - add chopped up chicken & stir.  Place into bought vol u vent cases and then pop a little grated cheese on top - now into the oven (preheated up high) for about 5 - 10 mins till heated & cheese melted.................. all done ready to eat!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Making a Milestone!

I could hardly have a blog and not post about turning 50, now could I??? Especially since it was made into such an enjoyable event.  So thankyou to the lovelies from my work place, to my family, to my friends, penpals, blogging friends and facebook buddies....... you all helped to make me feel special!  Do I feel different? ........ No, so I'm afraid you are all still stuck with the same old crazy person you have knows LOL.

Thankyou to my darling daughter Stace for all the thought  & organizing you did xox