Sunday, January 25, 2015

Grow Your Blog 2015

If you cast your eyes over to the sidebar you will see a lovely little picture with a link that will take you over to Vicki from 2 Bags Full who is hosting this wonderful blog hop. I took part in it last year and it had lots and lots of various types of blogs to be able to go and have a look at.  The links should be up fairly soon, just keep in mind many of us are on different time zones so if you don't see it the first time, call back a bit later.

So for those who might be visiting here for the first time, this post is a bit about me .... So grab yourself a cuppa, find a nice comfy spot and come visit with me for a bit......  The front verandah is a favourite spot of mine ....  

This is Scruffy, my helper and family caretaker lol.    You'll probably see him around from time to time as he usually isn't too far from me when I'm at home!   He often sneeks into the photos ... like the one beside here.... see him near the door!

Firstly, I live in Australia, down in the north east section of Victoria these days - in a small country township (well, we have a pub, a cafĂ© and a shop - and the Murray River which makes it popular for campers over summer).  We/ I have moved an awful lot over the years, actually since I first arrived as a baby - perhaps I have gypsy blood, since I don't seem to mind moving, I actually find it exciting, like a new adventure about to unfold........  We have a small house on about a 1/3 acre with shedding and gardens, fruit trees and chooks .....

I tend to blog about things going on around our little home ,my crafts, and such since I have lots of friends and family who tend to visit here to keep track of what's going on lol   Initially it started when we were moving from Townsville back to Victoria - we've been here almost 5 yrs and I can feel my feet getting that itch in them again ..........  We are hoping that DH might be able to retire in the next couple of years, so we will have to have decided on our "forever" place once that happens!  Our children are spread with son, DIL and grandies in Townsville; youngest and only daughter in Melbourne with her boyfriend/partner, and currently the eldest son back at home with us.  I also work in one of the towns (about 40 mins or so drive) 7 days a fortnight.  

Around here I tend to various activities in my spare time - gardening,  sewing,  knitting,  crochet, soap making,  preserving , reading  and walking. 

Since joining Ravelry 1 yr ago, I picked up the knitting needles again and have been busy with them ever since learning lots of new skills.  I'm hoping to be able to give our winter wardrobe some nice additions that will be wearable, comfy and last until we've had enough of them!  

Last year my wonderful DH turned the carport into a "little cabin" for me to use for my craft. I'd show you inside it, but it's a bit messy right now ...... in fact I have to admit my whole house needs a good declutter!!  If I could just have a week off from work that could be devoted to decluttering and sorting out my house, that could be very, very useful ....... hmmm, I've just had another look - perhaps a month, since decluttering involves cleaning out cupboards and shelves, not just the piles and overflowing items...........   I need more coffee!!!
And so, on that note, I think I'll finish off here ............ maybe go and sort out a few things so I can show you around next time..........
Have a great day, and hope to see you here again sometime


Saturday, January 24, 2015

Australia Day Swap

It's the Australia Day weekend here, busy as ever down at the Boat Ramp.  I took part in the Australia Day Swap put on again by Jewell's

This year I managed to be a bit creative with all the letters.  I sent my gifts off to Fiona and it wasn't till I had them all packaged up that I remembered I'd forgotten to take a photo of them so I've had to "borrow" the one from Fiona's blog - thanks Fiona! Incase you don't work it out, we had to use each letter from the word AUSTRALIA for each item
I also received a parcel as well, naturally...... mine came all the way from WA, from Anthea of Hibiscus Stitches  and it was filled with lots of wonderful items, just take a look.....

Australian Flag Bunting; Utensil ;Stamps Printed Cotton Drill; Tea light candles; Red Spotty Tea Towel; Afternoon Aussie Tea; Lollies;  Ice Cube Trays;  Aqua Fabric

These things will be very useful and a lot of fun, so thanks heaps Anthea!!
I've also been busy with a couple of other things ...... some major dental work which is "crashing my style" so to speak with what I'm able to achieve some days!!   So with that I've been sitting and working on a bit of that knitting ..... progress .....

So now I'm off to work on it a bit more, and perhaps see to a cook up of meals to put some things in the freezer for later in the week, when I'll be back in the dental chair and feeling very ordinary, definitely won't be feeling like cooking dinner for the family that day!!
Enjoy your Australia Day Weekend everyone

Monday, January 12, 2015

Bundles of Joy

After moving furniture hither, thither and yonder over the New Year break (and chasing a whole
lot of dust bunnies and their offspring lol), it seemed time to settle down with some knitting or sewing again.  The cabin is mighty hot right now with no fan or air con, so the sewing machine didn't get plugged in ....... instead the balls of yarn were ushered into the coolness of the air conditioned house......  Well, I've had this lovely yarn sitting for a good number of months waiting for me to make a particular pattern I had in mind at the time -  "Park Slope" by Laura Aylor.  I've taken up a Ravelry challenge to try to get it completed by the end of January.  We shall see, but at least it has me working on it!  This time last year was my introduction to using Wolmeise Yarn and the return to knitting with my hitchhiker scarf.  I'm pleased to say that at least my skills seem to have increased during the year.

With checking out my patterns and of course my "wishlist", I noticed another little number I'd like to knit, which of course led to looking at yarn, and ........ well ....... I ended up purchasing some lovely bundles of joy that I hope to knit up as the year progresses ...... in the meantime, lots of touching, and oooing and ahhing is allowed (smile)....... 
And just in case you wanted to see this one up close......... can't wait to knit it up

I've also managed to complete a mini knit - this cute little cowl with some yarn I already had in my stash.  So guess its number one for OPAM - ohhh, must check if I've signed up for it again this year yet!!
Brightside by Laura Aylor
And I'm about to get another project started pretty soon ........ a dress using some of the yarn I have in my stash .......and another one of Laura Aylor's designs.  I'm really enjoying her patterns....... guess we shall see how this next one progresses over the next couple of months lol
And this week I need to get my items wrapped up ready for the Australia Day Swap hosted by Jewell's.
And something else that I need to get onto at this time of year is getting this poor old body back in shape somewhat......... you know, waist line needs to get back to that recommended number (just think of the clothes that will fit me again when that happens )...... mostly I would like that fitness level boosted upwards instead of sitting at ground zero!! 
HAve yourselves a great week, whatever you are doing,

Hugs  Sharm

Friday, January 2, 2015

Start the New Year Fresh

I'm enjoying dusting off the dust and dirt from 2014 and embracing a fresh start to 2015!  I've decided this year I want to spend more time enjoying life and enjoying things I like to do.......  I will still be required to work outside the home in order to try getting our mortgage paid off (retirement would be rather good, particularly for my DH who is 14yrs older than me and I see the daily work grind beginning to wear on him).  But apart from that and the travel time involved in living in the country - it would be nice to not spend most of my "time off" cleaning house and pulling weeds!!

So yep, you guessed it......  I'm busy moving furniture into new places, decluttering and still there is M O R E  stuff ....... at some point I might get through it all, but for now I'm concentrating on the kitchen, dining and lounge room areas.  It really is nice to see some clear spots!

As for the garden ...... well, I love to enjoy the garden - the smells, the produce, the flowers and the birds, insects and critters it brings.  See the lovely crop of white nectarines and apricots we picked yesterday?  I've been busy making more apricot jam again this morning - all up I've used 5kgs of Apricots to make up the jam which should last us the whole year.  
The garden's a lovely place to sit and read, or stitch  or write a letter - when its under control.   But when it's been neglected for just a couple of weeks (like the past few where we just couldn't get out to it)...... well, let me tell you, there is grass and weeds growing like crazy and well out of control in some areas!!   So this means that part of the yard will be getting a makeover as well - that's still on the drawing board, but I'm looking for lower maintenance and something that can handle us being away for a couple of weeks here and there.

Naturally I'm looking for extra time so I can spend it in the cabin knitting and sewing.  In 2014 I took part in OPAM - a fantastic way of keeping track of just what things you get made up during the year and my total for 2014 was  48 items from dishcloths and ornaments to knitted adult sized jumpers and an afghan (6 knitted, 29 crocheted  and 13 sewn objects).  
Some of the knitted and crocheted items

 It appears my best month was January (no doubt because all the various family crisis had barely started then!) and the months of Feb, March, August and October saw no items completed.   I look forward to improving on that this year as I have quite a bit of stash I'd like to reduce and UFO's that need completing.
Right now, I've started on a tee shirt that I'm knitting up in some Wollmeiser Yarn in the Ballerina shade which is a blend of purples.  I have quite a knitting and sewing queue of items I'd like to get made up!!  

I do hope you have had time to reflect on what you would like to achieve this year.........  I'm off now to do some knitting.....
Hugs Sharm