Quick Post

Quick Post

Can it really be almost three weeks since I posted?  I am so slack!  But I’ve been so busy!  And tired!  And ticked off at work!  And lots of other things that end in an exclamation mark!  I’ve been coming home and falling asleep and have just been too tired to think straight, let alone post anything coherent or interesting.
I can’t say this post will be any better, but, at least, it’s SOMETHING.

I’ve been doing lots of op-shopping on the weekends, and gardening and making some crafty bits in the in-between times.  Some of my op-shop finds include :

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…this awesome fabric.  It’s blue and white (hard to see in the photo) and a nice thick, good quality material that I want to make a skirt from.  I got about 15 metres for $5!  Pretty good!  There’s enough there to make cushions and all sorts from it.  I have visions of myself parading about in a Von Trapp manner, looking like I am wearing curtains…

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…also picked up this delightful little Christmas scene.  Hand-painted and slightly age-worn, I just loved it and look forward to decorating with it at Christmas time.  Only $4…

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…made this necklace for the lovely SH as part of a craft swap I did with her…

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…and completed this glass, crystal and porcelain bead necklace (love the purples)…

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…I’ve been working on some friendship bracelets for my friend K – she wanted some in bright, fluoro colours so I chose a neon red and a yellow (they’re brighter in real life than in the photo).  I haven’t made a friendship bracelet since about 1989, but I found that I soon remembered the knotting technique and got stuck into in whilst watching TV…

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…I also made her this polished stone, coral and glass beaded bracelet (she wanted one for a friend at work)..

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…then quickly made these crystal earrings (using the beads from a bracelet I bought a couple of weeks ago)…

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…this little owl bracelet is for my cousin.  She saw one I had made for K and wanted one in green for herself.  Ask and you shall receive…

And then, I’ve been gardening, or, at least, planting lots of succulents and trying to propagate little cuttings and off-shoots.  It’s so exciting when the little babies appear and you can start off a whole new plant.  I had to buy myself a shelving unit to house them in because my front porch has limited space and if I put them out the back I will forget all about them.  At least if they’re by the front door, I have to go past them everyday and notice if they need anything like water, or more sun or shade or if they just need some conversation ha ha (yes, I am one of those crazy people  who talk to their plants!).

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Just look at some of the amazing colours they are displaying!  So pretty and each one unique.  I am still learning though and managed to kill one little specimen last week.  I think I overwatered him.  Never mind – the rest are doing fine and growing and looking happy 🙂

Sorry about the quick post – I promise to do better in the coming weeks.  Work has been so busy and stressful and I am just over everything by the time I get home.  I went to the hospital this morning for my 6 month renal check up and all is well so I don’t have to go back for another year now.  Good news 🙂

Hope you are all well and filling your lives with much more interesting pursuits than work! (Unless you have an awesome job – in which case, keep doing that!).

Bye for now (and a promise for better posts in the future)

x

Handmade Home

Handmade Home

I am lucky to be surrounded by things that have been made by people I love.  Wherever I go and wherever I live, I always have things with me that remind me of family and friends and are special to me because they have been handmade, with care and attention to detail.

My Mum has always made things for my brother and I – when we were children she made us clothes and toys, quilts and other hand made items that we loved then and treasure now.  I still have many of those things, either on display or packed safely away, to be taken out on occasion when the nostalgic mood strikes.  She is now continuing the tradition with her grandchildren, nephews and nieces,  and they have already benefitted from her skills with sewing and painting.

Some of the items Mum has made I have on display in my new home :

A birthday card she made me for my 40th, complete with a handmade tag inside…

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…a sweet little doll (I like to think she’s a fairy with invisible wings – she is so light and dainty and pretty)…

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…a heart-shaped country plaque – I used to dream about having my own little country cottage nestled in rolling hills, with a white picket fence…

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…cheerful and uplifting messages…

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…gifts for our wedding (this was on our “candy bar” on the day – I still display it, even if the marriage and jars of sweets are no longer in existence)…

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…my gorgeous patchwork quilt that she sewed and quilted by hand, that bears the handwritten cloth label “…this quilt may not be perfect, but there is love in every stitch to keep you safe and warm…”.  I treasure this and will keep it forever.

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My brother also is artistic, and I have many of his pieces in my home, many of them rescued from his moments of artistic passion and frustration, when “nothing is working!” and he wanted to throw them out.  I love having them here because he is so important to me and, although he doesn’t get the time to “do” much art these days (four kids are hard work!), I know he still has that artistic talent and heart, which he now shares with his children who are already showing that they too are creative and talented, with much of their handiwork being displayed proudly in the home.

Some of my favourite items of his are:

…a lion collage made for one of my birthdays…

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…a resin/collage piece featuring a photo of my Mum when she was a teenager…

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…another birthday gift – this time a card, featuring a bird collage/painting ( I have this framed on my book shelf).

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I am also lucky to have creative and talented friends.  I’ve already mentioned the gorgeous portrait of me my friend GK sketched for my birthday (see here).

 These bears were made by a friend’s friend – I love them :

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Homemade things are so much more special than bought gifts.  They are heartfelt and made with love, perfect in their imperfections.  A home isn’t a home without a few handmade treasures.  I love all of mine.  Do you have anything made for you that you wouldn’t part with or that means something special to you?

Happy homemade weekend to you all – hope your house is filled with love and creativity, in whatever form it takes x

Vintage Finds and Funnies

Vintage Finds and Funnies

My Mum has sold her house (hooray!) and we are madly scrambling to find her another house to move to.  No easy task.  My Mum is not what you’d call fussy, but she really wants to find a place that she can call her own and that is new without being super modern, older-style but not falling to pieces or in need of lots of TLC.  We have been viewing lots of properties but none have been suitable yet.  Or in the right price range (ie cheap) or in the right suburb.  So for now, we are just trying to get her own house sorted out and packed up so that she is ready to go when the time comes to actually lock the door for the final time and wave goodbye.

Helping her clear out a bedroom this weekend I came across some vintage books that had seen better days.  Most of them were falling to pieces so weren’t really worth saving (as much as it pains me to throw books out – they were practically disintegrating) and many of them were encyclopaedia type books where the information in them was incorrect, outdated and in some instances very racist and wrong!  I did however keep a few pages where I could, to use in craft work and card-making.  There was a nice children’s encyclopaedia that had a few colour plates in it :

 

 

The Alphabet pages were charming but also quite funny in places.  For instance:

 

I’m not sure what “spending a penny” means in your country but in England and Australia it is a colloquialism for having a pee!

 

 

Poor Winifred…I’m not quite sure why she’s having to drink out of a drain pipe!

 

 

I don’t think Keith is particularly big or jolly.  He’s not Santa!  He’s a rather effeminate little boy…not that there’s anything wrong with that, I am quick to point out.  Love the bathers!

 

 

I also managed to salvage a few pages of sheet music and lovely, colourful maps.

 

 

 

Hiding in a cupboard was a little gingham pony I had made years ago.  I’d like to say I was only a kid when I made it, hence the rubbish sewing, but it was only a couple of years back so I’ve no excuse.  The dear little thing is a bit deformed – I haven’t got the heart to throw him out 🙂

 

So, Mum and I are unearthing a few treasures and a lot of junk.  It’s amazing the stuff we accumulate (I know where I inherited my hoarding from!).  It’s nice to find old treasures though, and have a good old clear out.  Maybe it will take having to move out to get me to tidy up my place!