Thursday, January 30, 2014

Fresh Fields Quilt

It has been a joy to start sewing my new hexie quilt. The colours are a delight to the eyes and the 1" hexies work so well for these fabrics. Seven flowers have been completed this week.  I tend to use more stitches per inch than with my larger paper pieces used in Peaceful Night.

There are more photos of these flowers on my flickr photostream. I had wanted to share them here but between issues with blogger's photo auto-enhance and the current difficulties many are experiencing when attempting to transferring images from flickr to blogger, it just isn't happening (despite many, many attempts last night).  

I have started a new set on flickr just for photos of this quilt which I have named "Fresh Fields" to make it really easy to find them and for me to add more photos of progress as it happens.

I have been cutting the hexies using a quilting ruler and rotary cutter. Taping the hexagonal cutting template (which came free with my papers) to the quilting ruler has made the task quick and easy.

The little scrap triangles which remain after cutting are too pretty to throw away, these have been kept for another mini project or for my children to use in creating artwork.

Sharing at WIP Wednesday.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Still Finding Beauty, Joy and Contentment

Galahs, an Australian native bird

It was indeed a pleasant walk this morning, to check on the older siblings' fishing endeavours at the local boat ramp

As I've looked over the photos this afternoon I can't help but compare them with last January's images. You see, we've had major flood threats in our town each of the last THREE Januarys. I decided to start blogging in the wake of the 2011 flood threat, choosing to actively focus on the positive in each day and not let the thought of floods steal my happiness and contentment.

This morning at the boat ramp                                            The same spot 29th January 2013

31st January 2013 as the waters went down

Nine days after the 2013 flood peak

                     Today                                                  The same spot nine days after the 2013 flood peak

This is my favourite photo of the day! These two sisters are becoming special friends.   

Saturday, January 25, 2014

A Curly Question

The Cricket Australia Under 18 Female Championships were over, the team could relax - and they had fun. Miss G and Miss N had been interstate for 10 days, playing cricket in 40 C/104 F heat and then some cooler days too. Their team was very friendly and they literally let their hair down on the last night - well at least they let Miss G's hair down......

It seems so strange looking at these photos of Miss G with straight hair. By the time she arrived home the next night it was beginning to go wavy. One hair wash later and it looks just like the photos below as shared last September.

Miss N batting at the Championships - she bowled brilliantly too.

And the best news is...... she prefers it curly, as we all do!     :)

Thursday, January 23, 2014

A Fresh Start

My eyes have been delighting in the waterfall of beautiful fabric strips I've cut ready for my next quilt. Having reached the "big block" stage of my current Peaceful Night EPP quilt I've found myself hankering again for a small, portable hand sewing project.

Photo and quilt by A Happy Dance via Etsy

Looking over my EPP Pinterest board my fancy has been taken by the restful simplicity of the quilt above from Etsy. The long diagonal lines of hand quilting are simple, achievable and add to the tranquility of the quilt. It appears that the hexies are 1" or slightly smaller. I went to my stash to see what colours and fabrics might work for me.

Over the course of a few days I have refined my colour and fabric choices, partly inspired by this house extension which I see on my evening walks.

Fabrics have been washed, ironed and cut into strips 2 3/4" wide - I prefer a seam allowance of more than the traditional 1/4" for EPP.

Having cut all my own papers for Peaceful Night and my last hexie quilt, I decided to search for some ready cut papers this time. On Sunday I came across Koopip's online store in Melbourne. Their quality EPP papers are made in Australia and come with a free, thin cutting template. The store owner, another Karen, offers free shipping Australia wide on all orders. 

Koopip's also stocks a number of other quilting and craft items, including Sewline glue pens and refills. For those who wonder how long the Sewline glue pens last - I glue basted all of the papers for my Peaceful Night quilt with my pre-filled Sewline pen plus the spare refill which comes with the pen on purchase. 

My Koopip's order arrived today - maybe I'll make a start on the weekend.....

Sharing at WIP Wednesday, In The Studio.

Monday, January 20, 2014

"Life is Too Short to be Busy"

I read a thought provoking article today by Tyler Ward titled "Busy Isn't Respectable Anymore"

This evening I stopped to watch the setting sunlight dancing on the rippling river in the cool evening breeze. 
Stopped. And Watched. Until the sunset, big and red, and it was no more. 

 I've become so accustomed to being unavoidably busy with several young children for many years that I now have to retrain myself to take those moments and decide NOT to be busy. "Life is too short to be busy". Wise words by Tim Kreider.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Searching for Moonlight

Yesterday's moon rose upon a dusky sunset, wonderful shades of pink and blue mingling together. 

Tonight I returned to the bridge with plans to wait for a shimmering moonrise over the water. Miss E was my little sunshine to chatter throughout my walk. But the moon was later than predicted and as the cool river breeze strengthened and all daylight disappeared, we knew we had to head for the safety of home.

We stopped along the way, waiting and hoping for moonlight, only to find streetlights with a stream of bats in the far distance.

A car far away looked like a bright sun on the horizon.

One last look and I caught the shimmer I had sought but the moon and I were kept apart by private property. Never mind. My little chattering sunshine and I headed quickly home, a little disappointed yet pleased we had walked together.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Miss E enjoyed looking at the farm animals which were making a visit to our local shopping centre. She wanted to enter their enclosure for a closer look but once inside, wouldn't let go of my arm. A quick close up look was more than enough for her.

Sharing a little summer colour from my garden, thinking of all of those who are enduring a long, bleak winter in the northern hemisphere.

Miss O thoroughly enjoyed constructing a meringue tree from a kit, and most everyone enjoyed deconstructing it! All except our twins who are currently interstate for a week of cricket. They are playing cricket in heatwave conditions with the next three days forecast of 39C (102F) in their location. It sure is summertime in the land down-under. Thankful that our town isn't so hot and that we seem to be clear of the flood scares we've had in our town each of the last three Januarys!

Friday, January 10, 2014

I Love School Holidays

A time for everyone to do something creative......

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