Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Halfway There ~ 2009 Reading Challenge

As today is the last day of June I thought I had better update my reading list for the 2009 Reading Challenge detailed HERE

How exciting that I have read 40 books for the year so far, I know that the target is 100 books but I am happy with my efforts regardless!

I normally only mention the last couple of books read but seeing as this is a Milestone month I will put the full list.

1. The wooden horse ~ Eric Williams
2. The comfort of Saturdays ~ Alexander McCall Smith
3. The tales of Beedle the Bard ~ J.K.Rowling
4. The Turning ~ Tim Winton
5. La's orchestra saves the world ~ Alexander McCall Smith
6. The Hobbit ~ J.R.R Tolkien
7. Whitethorn ~ Bryce Courtenay
8. Sharpe's Tiger ~ Bernard Cornwell
9. Salvation in Death ~ J.D. Robb
10. Danny the Champion of the World ~ Roald Dahl
11. Rebel ~ Bernard Cornwall
12. Copperhead ~ Bernard Cornwall
13. Battle flag ~ Bernard Cornwall
14. The Bloody Ground ~ Bernard Cornwall

15. Hamish meets Bumpy McKenzie ~ ?
16. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland ~ Lewis Caroll
17. The Choice ~ Nicholas Sparks
18. The first Casualty ~ Ben Elton
19. Promises in Death ~ J.D.Robb
20. East of the Mountains ~ David Guterson
21. The Red Pony ~ John Steinbeck
22. Maps for Lost Lovers ~ Nadeem Aslam
23. Testimony ~ Anita Shreve
24. Twilight ~ Stephanie Meyer

25. New Moon ~ Stephanie Meyer
26. Eclipse ~ Stephanie Meyer
27. Sewing Projects in an afternoon ~ Susan Mickey
28. Breaking Dawn ~ Stephanie Meyer
29. The Mighty Toddler ~ Robin Barker
30. Toddler Taming ~ Dr Christopher Green
31. Let me sing you gentle songs ~ Linda Olsen
32. The Persimmon Tree ~ Bryce Courtenay
33. Fishing for Stars ~ Bryce Courtenay
34. Truckers ~ Terry Pratchett
35. Meet me at Mike's ~ Pip Lincolne
36. Sewing in no time ~ Emma Hardy
37. House at Slavation Creek ~ Susan Duncan
38. The Boy in Striped Pyjamas ~ John Boyne
39. The Quilter's Apprentice ~ Jennifer Chiaverini
40. The Last Continent ~ Terry Pratchett

I wonder what great books I will discover in the second half of the year, if you can recommend me something PLEASE do!!!

From my list, the standout book for me is 'The boy in striped pyjamas' by John Boyne.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Block Swaps

A sneak peak of the block I picked for the EB Round Robin block swap in my fabrics. I cant wait to get to make this block using everyone else's fabrics as there are some beautiful choices headed my way over the next few months!

Then I had to sew the blocks for the Chaletgirl Block Swap I have been lucky enough to be a part of over the last few months. I am now past the halfway mark for this swap and I think I will miss it when I am done. In saying that, I can't wait to get my blocks back!!

Bianca's fabric above

Rebecca's fabric below

I did see this morning that Chaletgirl is already thinking ahead to her next swap so maybe I won't have to miss out on the fun for long...

All of this sewing was done on the NEW sewing machine that Mum bought me. I think she felt sorry for me battling away on the old machine of hers! I won't say much more on this here as it really does deserve it's own post!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Who doesn't love free stuff?

Retromummy is giving away 1 mtr of BEAUTIFUL fabric!! drawn

Anna from Tillytom designs is having a GIVEAWAY to celebrate 100 posts over on her BLOG. Very nice stuff up for grabs :) drawn

Ingrid is giving away something wonderful as well! drawn

Novy at Little Munchkins is having a giveaway, a very GOOD giveaway!
If you would like to win one of two Oliver + S patterns pop on over and leave a comment :)

Romi is having a giveaway too. drawn

Kate is too if you want the chance to win some yarn!

Leah is sharing the love as well! drawn
Who doesn't love free stuff?

Friday, June 19, 2009

On the Shelf ~ June 19th

I have not really read much of late, but the last book I read was so good I felt that I HAD to tell EVERYONE about it.

It is the best book I have read all year, and it was the book club book that I picked up yesterday, and finished in one sitting. I love book clubs for introducing you to the odd gem you may not have discovered otherwise. This book is now on my 'Must Buy' list and even Dear Husband wants to read it. I can't wait for the next book club meeting, in a month, when we discuss this gem!!

The Boy in Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne.
'A book that lingers in the mind for quite some time. It is a subtle, calculatedly simple and ultimately moving story.' Irish Times

To add to the full list of books mentioned HERE that I have read for the year I can now include:

May/June cont...
37. House at Slavation Creek ~ Susan Duncan
38. The Boy in Striped Pyjamas ~ John Boyne

38 books so far, I am traveling along fairly well!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

WIP Wednesday ~ June 17th

Another 'Work in Progress Wednesday' and it is that bleak outside that I almost could not be bothered to go out to take a photo of my new scarf. I braved the chill because I like this scarf and thought I would show it off!

It was knitted in a day using 12mm needles and 100g of 12ply 'Slummy' Merino. I loved the colours which is why I bought it.

What makes it interesting is that I cast on 105 stitches, then knit 11 rows in garter stitch. This means that when I am wearing it the weight of the scarf does not pull it out of shape so it hangs so beautifully! It was worth braving the cold to take a photo so I could share that with you :)

In other knitting news, I am halfway through my Tea Cosy. Other jobs (such as my scarf) keep getting in the road but I am home alone tonight so am determined to cast on the other half...

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Round Robin Fabrics

The Quilty Girls on Essential Baby convinced me to sign up for a Round Robin block swap. I bought my fabrics yesterday which took a lot of head scratching, thought, and the odd startled fellow customer that I shamelessly bailed up to ask for advice...

Here are the results:
Red (Main 2): Rambling Rose Polka Dot
Green (Main 1): Tutti Frutti Swirl
Blue (Background Block colour): Muted moments

I hope these will work together alright as I have never done anything on this scale before.

I still have to select the sashing, binding and backing but I was tired from battle by this time so decided to leave that for another day :)

Monday, June 15, 2009

Giveaway Goodies :)

I have been very lucky lately, I have won not one, but three Giveaways in the last little while. I went from never having won ANYTHING to winning THREE times in a week!

The first bundle of goodness to hit my mailbox came from Beetlehouse Designs where I was lucky enough to win a copy of The Rag Doll book. There are so many great dolls in there that it will be hard to pick which one to make first. I am leaning towards the 'parlour maid' but will have to wait and see what I end up with first!

Next up came a parcel from Carrose Creations where I was lucky enough to win a novel called 'The Quilter's Apprentice'. That on it's own was exciting, but when the parcel arrived there was a lot more in it :) Car also added a Patchwork magazine, a Block of chocolate (already nearly eaten), and a little sewn bag which I am already using to hold my latest knitting project :)

Pretty lucky aren't I?!!

Parcel number three was a 'surprise package' so as soon as it arrives I will let you all know what was in that one as well :)

Saturday, June 13, 2009


Today is World Wide Knit in Public Day!

I jumped in the car and drove to Armidale to knit in the mall with 9 other ladies from Ravelry.
With coffee, hot chocolate, fruit toast and knitting in hand it was a great morning.

I even learnt how to knit ends in as you go so I don't waste as much yarn, and time, sewing them in at the end :) One very happy knitter here now armed with new knowledge.

I even bought some new yarn to knit another scarf. It's Winter so I 'need' a new scarf don't I? Yes, yes I do!

And because I am loving all things knitted today:

Image from here.

n. The surreptitious or unauthorized placement of knitted objects on statues, posts, and other public structures.
—yarn bomb v.
—yarn bomber n.

I really want to do this, I don't know why...
My inner rebellious self looking for an outlet?
I think I will start knitting a few bits from my stash to decorate a few local statues about the place and see what happens.
Maybe I will keep an eye out in the Op Shops for knitted goodies.
It is a drab time of year so something to brighten it up would be a good thing, right?

I might aim for the first day of spring as my local yarn bombing day.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Crafting Canine?

What crafty fun is your pampered pet having today?

I think Miss Possum took a ball of yarn outside...

Monday, June 8, 2009

Paper Mache Monday?

Paper Mache Monday... I don't think I will be starting the latest Blog craze here, but it did tickle my fancy a little to think it might :)

Last weekend, while sitting at the table after Miss Possum had gone to bed I decided to count her money box so I could do a trip to the bank. My brother, who lives with us, decided that it would be fun to make a giant pig money box, for himself mind you!

Naturally, I had to help. What else is a good sister to do! Dear Husband decided to not play along in the PVA, but did fetch and organise extra paper and glue for us here and there. Many strips of paper later, a quick trip to Spotlight for paint/eyes/pipe cleaner supplies, and a bit of drying time later my brother was left with...

I put a lot more time and effort into Mister Piggy than my brother did, as he was away for work for the week, and it was a sad day when he picked him up and put him in his room to be filled with wealth.
I think I am in mourning and may have to get started on another (smaller) version for myself ;)

Sunday, June 7, 2009


Happy 1st Birthday Nephew T.
I hope you like your book, and the card that Miss Possum made her mark on:

And also the hat that I made for you to wear on all your outdoor adventures!

Hope your birthday is full of fun and goodness


Friday, June 5, 2009

Block Swap Mail Out 3

Mail out three is done and headed back to Sheridan :)

I was very nervous this round as the first set of blocks pictured are Sheridan's so there was a bit of added pressure ;) I love the two floral prints that I paired with the pindots.

Next up I had Bronwyn's floral print to pair, the pink and green both worked really well with this fabric.

All up I was happy with this month's results, even if my machine was playing up and causing grief :(

Have I mentioned that I have signed up for another swap? Yes, I am crazy as this one runs till the end of the year and I will have a new baby to contend with soon. It just looked so interesting and it was hard to say no... It is a Round Robin Block Swap with the girls on Essential Baby (EB).

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Shhhh, don't tell anyone about this giveaway

Please don't read this post LOL
I am blogging about a great giveaway over at BrisStyle
I really want to win one of these creations so DON'T read this post and DON'T enter.

drawn 25th May

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

On the Shelf ~ June 2nd

I am still trying to fool myself that I am in the running to read 100 books this year as per the challenge described in THIS post.

The latest few are listed below...

MAY/JUNE cont.
33. Fishing for Stars ~ Bryce Courtenay
34. Truckers ~ Terry Pratchett
35. Meet me at Mike's ~ Pip Lincolne
36. Sewing in no time ~ Emma Hardy

Meet me at Mike's is full of great crafty ideas! 26 projects in total so there is plenty to work on. I have several projects book marked for future rainy days and spare moments. A softie wheat bag friend, baby yoga pants, Cow softie, fabric clocks, so much to choose from that I am not sure which one to start with...

None of which will help me read more books to reach my 100 :(

If you love crafty goodness, head over to Pip's Meet me at Mike's Blog

If I could count books read to Miss Possum as well I would be well and truly over 100 book for the year already. In the last week I have read: A Lion in the night, Time for Bed, Fancy that, Mr McGee goes to sea, I wish I had a Pirate suit, Shoes from Grandpa, Wombat divine, The tale of Peter Rabbit, Hairy Maclary from Donaldson's Dairy and others...

Monday, June 1, 2009

Snailblazer Roundup

The first thing I need to do is thank Cass over at Snailblazer for organising such a wonderful swap.
The second thing I need to do is say a very big Sorry to everyone in my group. I am a beginner sewer who got excited in the way of the 'little engine that could' I signed up before I remembered that I couldn't and so you are all now stuck with my sub par attempts at creativity...

I had trouble thinking of an item that I could make 10 of and fit them in a post satchel. I decided on an ipod/phone cozy using this tutorial. I used fabric and buttons from my stash, limited as that is and so I did not send empty cozys out into the world I added a couple of packets of Chai Tea to each.

edited to add: I did modify the pattern a bit, I made it narrower by an inch and a half, and I decided it would be easier to sew the button on BEFORE I stitched them up. I just folded them, measured where the elastic fell and marked that spot for the button.

My parcel arrived this morning! First day of Winter Blues? Not here!

Suzanne made a headband which had me rushing to a mirror to try it on :)
Monica made a hanging chain which Miss Possum has run off with...
Kylie made a Hair tie travel case which includes 3 beautiful hair clips, perfect for a little girl I have here!

Sophie made a Brooch, nicely cheerful to combat Winter drabness!
Kat made a makeup purse, I LOVE sausage dogs!!
Danielle made a zippered purse embellished with a yoyo

Leah knitted a washcloth! I love the colour and the pattern :)
Natasha made a tissue holder, perfect for the cold season ahead, am bound to feel healthier just for the sylish addition to my tissues :)
Sarah made a Diary and pen holder, I think it may have to live in my office to make me look more professional!

Last but not least:
Jo made a set of handmade cards
and Cass typed out a full list of blogs and names to help us keep track of what came from where.

I think I heard Cass say she might be doing this again towards the end of the year which would be wonderful, this already feels like Christmas come early!

Giveaway Day Winner!!

Who knew that Giveaway day would see so much traffic hit my blog? Not me! 310 comments were left and I have read each and every one of them! Thanks to everyone who took part in this amazing display of generosity and fun in Blog Land :)

The random number was 144 which was:
tammiemarie said...
Those cats are fab! Love the shrooms and trim too. Thanks!
May 28, 2009 11:57 AM