Sunday, December 29, 2013

All is calm, all is bright

We had a lovely Christmas. I hope you did too.

I let a few things go this year. While I love the Christmas festivities, I find it can get a bit crazy. This year I decided to be more intentional and choosy in the lead up to Christmas and I think our family was a lot better for it. We did not go to our community Christmas carols this year because we had been at a Christmas Party all day. We had a lovely day but we were tired, I had a headache, our kiddos were squabbling so we just let it go. There were a number of things I just let go. And our Christmas was just as wonderful as every other year. We had parties and friends over, work luncheons and school wrap ups. And on Christmas Eve we wandered the streets of our neighbourhood and enjoyed 'the lights'. I did not put pressure on myself to make gifts this year although I did make one. I avoided town and I did most of our shopping online or at markets. I supported makers and small business as much as possible.

We enjoyed Christmas lunch with my family and hosted dinner for the Mr's family. There were cocktails and prawns. Salads and cold meats. Frozen pudding and trifle and chocolate log and pavlova! There were water bombs and pool shenanigans! It was a very good day!

Once again, we gifted our children 'something you want, something you need, something to wear and something to read'. We began this traditon five years ago now and it has been a wonderful thing. The children love it! Each gift is labelled-want, need, wear, read and they love trying to guess what might be inside. It makes for more thoughtful gift giving, I think and eliminates a lot of plastic fantastic. We have a large extended family so they receive many gifts by the end of the day. They also received a gift from Santa-this year, a trampoline.

So, a little bit of our Christmas in snaps! I hope yours was just as wonderful!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013


A little Christmas treasure was found at Vinnies the other day. I had to buy the whole bag of plastic fantastic to get this little guy but I think he was worth the three bucks, don't you?

Wishing you all a wonderful Christmas! May it be filled with favourites!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A little smattering of this and that

Last weekend my big girl and I enjoyed a little drive in the country to visit some Twilight Markets.
The main street was lined with little stalls. The road was closed off and there were carriage rides by some gorgeous Clydesdales, there was music and sunshine and the local oppy was open late. It was a very nice way to spend the evening. I snavelled this little piece of Staffordshire from the oppy for 50c. I love her pretty pattern and colours.

I also poked my head into the local junk shop. My girl exclaimed 'mum this is your idea of heaven'. She knows me well. Let me intoduce 'the chair room'. That's what the sign above the entry said.

I didn't buy a chair but I did bring home this rusty old bakers tray.
I am thinking it will make a nice vertical succulent wall. What do you think?

A couple of other recent oppy finds...two pretty florals and a macrame belt.

In other news, I arrived home from Sydney to find my vintage fats from Zara. Thank you Miss. It was nice to have that little bit of lovely to open. Thank you also for your cute map paper garland. Now to get stitching I guess!

The cherry tomatoes were another pleasant surprise. Lulu has been doing a great job looking after them. She even decided to sample her efforts. After a quick lick, she decided she definately does not like tomatoes!

I'll be back with some Christmas makings soon. With all the goings on I am a bit behind the eight ball with Christmas. I am counting down the days until I finish work-only 3 to go! and then it will be full steam ahead Christmas making, baking and photo taking! My current mantra... I will not take my kids for the annual santa pic on Christmas Eve this year! No I will not!

How are you going with your Christmas organisation? Did you know it's the 11/12/13 today?

Sunday, December 8, 2013

November snapshots

November! You were a rollercoaster of emotions. With our big girl being in hospital for a couple of weeks, things were a bit trickier than usual.

When I am in the thick of it I can't really think about it too much. I have to keep putting one foot in front of the other and move through each day as it comes. It's not until afterwards that I can fully process and reflect on our journey.

It seems though, for every challenge faced there is also something to be grateful for.
It is good to keep one's eyes wide open and look for joy I think. Yep there are times when this is a challenge but if I don't try to find joy then I will drop my bundle for sure!
So the highs and lows of November.

  • fasting and feeling 'hangry', feeling worried about getting a midline instead her usual longline but said midline insertion going in beautifully. These Dr's are amazing. They are truly gifted at working with kids and helping them to cope. They reallly work hard to care for and accomodate the kids.  
  • blood sugar levels all over the place and finger pricks every few hours but a diabetes test that was clear-for now.
  • being angry and scared about having a new procedure. On the day this was scheduled however, the hospital had their annual Christmas fundraiser. It was a great distraction for us and a busy, exciting day with lots of good things-holding baby animals, exploring a firetruck, a reptile show, krispy kreme donuts, wonderful performers, photos with Marina Prior, The Collective, Damien Leith, Paulini.
  • a somewhat traumatic insertion of a nasal feeding tube for night feeds but putting on 3kgs weight in 2 weeks!
  • being nearly 12 and processing feelings about living with a life shortening chronic illness-a challenge for us both. So proud at the knowledge our girl has developed about cystic fibrosis and in awe at her ability to articulate her feelings. She is wise beyond her years and she teaches me so much every day.
  • enduring blood tests but having stable medication levels
  • missing home and being away from family but having a surprise visit from the coolest people ever!
  •  being 'stuck in hospital' but reading lots of books, going to the hospital school, visiting the starlight room and finding an old friend from a previous hospital admission, afternoon physio in the gym, being spoilt with gifts and mail from family and friends and getting a pass out on our last day to have a special pancake lunch with beautiful friends. Thank you beautiful friends.
  • missing school friends but logging onto your class blog to 'chat' with them and having your teacher let your friends ring you up on his mobile. 
  • feeling overwhemed and daunted by the future and what this journey of living with cf will bring but knowing in our heart that we are loved and supported by our beautiful friends and family and cf team who go above and beyond to care for our girl. So very grateful for their care and dedication. 
November you were a challenge but we learned and loved so much!

October Snapshots

Wave jumping, digging for pipi, collecting, beach driving fun, worming, swimmimg, friends and family, celebrations. October you were lovely!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Wrapped with love

One of my favourite things about giving is wrapping the gift. Sometimes I theme the wrapping to tie in with the gift, sometimes I wrap with something that I think the receiver will love and can maybe reuse and other times I use it as an excuse to have fun and get creative. Always though, they are wrapped with love.

Here's a few things I've wrapped and snapped with the intention of one day posting them on my blog.
Today is that one day.

Lots of layering on this one. Reliving my papercrafting past and sharing some of the things I love with a beautiful blogging friend. Washi tape, map paper, stitching, a photograph I took at my favourite cafe Ajanta, paper doily, bookpaper, and some beautiful pianola music as the main wrap.

A little assortment of papers punched into flowers and circles and stitched together to make a pretty garland that can be reused. Inside some home made peanut butter choc chunk cookies. Yum! I make these for my sis in laws birthday each year; her favourite!

Tiny tags, only a few cm in width. I've added some pink paint and them stamped over the top once dry. Simple I know but sweet all the same.

Handmade cushion from a vintage calendar teatowel was stitched for a beautiful friends birthday earlier this year. Wrapped with love and sewing pattern paper. A little offcut from the teatowel made the perfect addition to the shipping tag, I think.

And finally, one from the vault. This was a Christmas gift for my nephew's girlfriend. This time I've run with theming to wrap to go with the gift. A bit of fun putting this one together. I've popped in the card from Violet Bella (the etsy store I purchased the necklace from).

Looking over these snaps, it seems I like to go with a brown paper/neutral wrapping with pops of colour and textured added.

Do you like gift buying? Gif giving? Gift wrapping?
Are you anxious about Christmas shopping or is it right up your alley?
Have you even started yet? Maybe you are super dooper organised and you have finished already!

Thursday, November 14, 2013


My big girl is in hospital at the moment so it has been a week of up and downs.
In the hope of finding a bit of calm amongst the storm I thought I might post some of the posts sitting in my drafts folder.
A wee bit of thrifty show n tell today. My days of thrifting are few and far between these days but sometimes I pop in to an oppy or two on the run. Recently, I picked up some pretty sheeting. One can never have enough right?

This pretty tapestry was a had to have and a pretty remnant of fabric might become a cushion cover if she's lucky.

I am looking forward to sinking my teeth into a little revamp project down the track. It's been quite a while and I think a lick of paint and some vintage wallpaper make pretty this up a little. Just perfect at $1.00

Some Johnson dinner plates, a bargain price of $1.00 for the stack of 6.

Lucky last..a lovely floral tablecloth in beautiful condition.

Have you been thrifting lately? Is it still your favourite pastime or have you signed up for thriftaholics anon?
Linking up with Max and the other show offs.

Sunday, November 3, 2013


Made for my sweet mama who turned 70 years old yesterday.
Each patch was stitched with much love.
I hope it gives her much colour and warmth in the many, many years ahead.
Love you so much mum! Happy Birthday!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Thrifting of sorts

The other day I dropped into the quilters to discover a table full of treasures for sale. She is moving house soon so has been having a little clean out. Lucky me snapped up a couple of pretty pieces.
This lovely jug and glasses came home with me for $10.00 There were in fact, 6 glasses but clumsy me broke one when when I was passing them over for wrapping! I know! The children loved them. They make a nice water glass on the dinner table. Great for little hands.

I also picked up a sweet bowl, just because. $2 and it will most likely house some jewellery.

Linking in with Max and the other show offs.

Monday, October 14, 2013

September Snapshots

September was joy filled!
On the very first day of Spring our beautiful boy turned 8!

Our boy, you are such a funny kid. Always up for a joke or trick, a play on words or anything to do with farts. This year you have grown in confidence enormously and I am just so happy for you really. You are friendly and helpful. You have enjoyed T ball and soccer and hip hop too. We gave you a big bike for your birthday and your minion cake earned me the title of best mum ever. You celebrated turning 8 on Father's Day and made sure your daddy got plenty of attention too. Such a thoughtful boy...

I've prattled on about Microwave Jenny before and I love them! I do! They make beautiful music and they are beautiful people as well. A while ago we applied for their House Concert Tour and we were lucky enough to have MJ come to our house!!! and sing their sweet tunes to our family and friends. There was bunting and fairy lights, chocolate pretzels and rocky road. We put all those chenille blankies to good use, enjoyed a picnic and a dance. It was just an awesome concert. As well as being super talented they are just the sweetest people too.
LOVE LOVE LOVE their song Mellow. Be sure to listen to the Part 2 as well!
Read more about them on triple j unearthed.
Love her vintage dress in this cover and adore the film clip.  

As if that wasn't fantastic enough for September!!! I also had a wee trip to Sydney for a few days. While I was officially accompanying our daughter on her school excursion-so I could do her CF treatments- I had plenty of time to explore and spend a glorious day with my bestie.
We enjoyed the most divine lunch at The Grounds. She, pear and duck salad. Me, beef cheeks and beetroot relish on aniseed sourdough. We snapped many a photograph and also enjoyed a spot of shopping at Koskela and Mitchell Rd Auction House. I picked up two vintage fold up chairs, just perfect for to come. When I took them back to camp, the school busdriver asked if I was going to restore them. When I told him that nope, I loved them in all their patina and paint peeled glory, he thought I was a bit mad.

Finally, we ended our September with a few tears as we said goodbye to our Nanna Belle.  We are SO grateful to have had her for so very long. So happy that our children knew their Great Nanna Belle and so thankful that she was well for almost all of her 100 years. What an amazing life! Her children, grandchildren and great granchildren all lit a special candle during the funeral service. Her grandchildren carried her from the church and our Bella participated in a prayer. It was lovely celebration of her life.
Our Isabella is named after her so I like to think a little bit of Nanna Belle lives on in her as well as in our hearts and memories.

Lemon Patty Cakes

I made these late last night and enjoyed one with a tea before bed.
They greeted me as I walked into the kitchen this morning and I had to summon out all my self control not to eat one for breakie. I made myself a boiled egg instead but I've just eaten two! for morning tea.

I am a horrible cupcake baker. I always overfill them and they explode and ooze over the sides, never looking like they ought to. Not this time though. These might be my best cupcakes yet. The mix is very light and fluffy and they obviously taste great!

90g softened butter
90g softened cream cheese
2 tsp lemon rind and I added 2 tbls of lemon juice as well although the recipe didn't call for it.
150g sugar
2 eggs
60g plain flour
60g self raising flour

Preheat oven to 160 deg cel
Pop your patty pans in a muffin tin-this mix made 12 large
In a bowl, beat together butter, cream cheese, lemon rind, sugar and eggs until creamy.
Mix in flour with a wooden spoon.
Transfer mix into patty pans and bake for 25 mins or until golden.
Cool on a wire rack.
Sit down with a magazine, a lovely cup of tea and enjoy!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Learning something new

A while back, I took our children to our local Naidoc Celebrations. I think it's important to learn about our Indigenous Australians, their culture and to celebrate their achievements. I came across a stall of beautifully woven products, both tradional and modern. After speaking with one of the stall holders about their craft, I knew I wanted to have a go.

Yesterday afternoon I had my first weaving lesson with a beautiful and talented group of Indigenous women. It was very informal, sitting around, weaving and 'having a yarn' over a cuppa and a bite to eat. I came away so inspired and so thrilled to have made a start on my weaving. Their work is amazing-you can see it here. Hours of weaving goes into making each piece. I have a long way to go with my piece. The skill and speed of the women is AMAZING!

What am I making? Well I am not quite sure yet. The piece just kind of evolves and shapes depending on how our hands connect with the materials. So we shall just have to wait and see I guess.

It was so lovely to be mindful of my hands and their work, connecting with the women and learning something new and wonderful.

As you can see, I have a long way to go but watch this space!

Have you ever tried your hand at weaving?
Have you been learning anything new lately?

Snapshots of August in September!!!

When I sat down to write August Snapshots I just felt a whole lot of busy. The diary is scribbled with school activities, soccer training, dance and music lessons, birthday parties. There has been a lot of driving around from a to b to c and then back again.

So I closed my diary and went to see what snapshots I caught during August. The things that really matter are usually caught on camera.

In no particular order...

Harmony's first painting
Sick kids
Visiting the baby lambs at Grammy and Grandy's place
Book week parade
A new dress and a new do..well a new colour.
Signs of Spring
The Mr started his new job.
I began working 3 days a week, which accounts for the feeling of a whole of busy I suppose. I am hoping the warmer weather and longer days ahead will give me a bit more time in the day.
A spot of stitching-a new dress for loobylu. She of course LOVES it!
Bella made the most delicious crepes with orange sauce from the Masterchef Junior Cookbook.

Cross August snapshots off the list!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Thrifting lately...

A quick visit to the oppy recently did not disappoint. It's right near our school so if time permits, it's perfect for a quick browse. I'm a pretty ruthless thrifter these days. I know what I like and what I want so a quick browse through means I don't hoard too much stuff.

This pyrex bowl for use not display, though it looks happy on that shelf doesn't it?!
Great condition, great price. $4.00

Pretty doilies for bunting, clothing, pincushions. 50c a piece.

And  this lovely cloche-that makes three now and a bargain at just $1.00

How have you scored lately? Any luck at the oppy?
Linking in with lovely Max and crew.

Sunday, September 15, 2013


Despite my sporadic blogging I am not ready to throw it in yet. Do I miss it? Not really. Do I enjoy it? I do! While there's lots of lovely to look at on instagram, I kind of miss the story telling that you get with blogs. Blogging is kind of like a modern day penpal, I think. Except there are lots of penpals showing and telling and sharing with each other. So in an effort to find my blogging groove I thought I'd do one of those list type posts that record some of the stuff that I've been up to lately.

Drinking: camomile tea
Sewing: a quilt
Enjoying: the most wonderful day shopping and eating with my bff
Making: rocky road
Eating: beetroot relish
Listening: to Microwave Jenny
Wishing: for more hours in the day
Wondering: if I will find the balance
Loving: happy mail from here and here and being so utterly happy with both garments.
Reading: anything I can find by Bill Rogers
Flicking: through Real Living Magazine
Wearing: cardigans instead of coats
Counting down: the days until school hols
Feeling: tired
Hoping: I can pull off photographer at my brother's wedding-eeek!
Waiting: for my orchids to bloom-they are on their way.
Thrifting: doilies, among other things
Opening: a beautifully wrapped gift from a lovely lady. She used to write this cool blog I loved reading.

Depression Glass (found inside beautifully wrapped gift)

Inspired by Pip

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Good things lately

1. A spot of making- cushion cover made from thrifted cross stitch, vintage floral and some too small for me jeans.
2. Lemon Crinkles. Thanks Miss Kylie!
3.  Floral tin $5 from a new found treasure trove in my town. I was going to put it in the garden but now I'm having second thoughts.
4. Seedlings sprouting. The littlest love gave me the little biodegradable pot for mothers day this year. It came with a peat pellet and a little packet of mixed seeds. We planted them together and now we are watching them grow.
5. Goodbye Winter
6. Littlest love being her funny little self.

Please let me know if you have a 'good things' type post. I'd love to see what good things make you smile.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Happy Mail

Recently another Lee, sent a beautiful little package my way. She knows how much I love vintage music paper and I rarely come across any around my parts, so it was gratefully received. It was one of those little out of the blue packages. It was SO thoughtful and a wonderful surprise-totally made me my day. Bloggers are nice like that aren't they?

Well it's made a home on a wall in my little making space.
I had a merry old time pinning it up with some vintage friends. It is a work in progress and I am still adding to it as the mood strikes. I love how it is evolving and I get to enjoy it every time I walk in the room which is much better than having it stashed away for a rainy day. There's all kinds of lovely-dictionary pages, botanical prints, bible pages, recipes and some wonderful pages from an old Womens Weekly.

It's my little wall of wisdom, full of all kinds of tips and tricks, recipes and inspiration.
Here's a few favourites.

Ginger Beer anyone?

Beauty tips might be more up your alley...
'Don't be discouraged!' This is my first word of advice to women in the thirties and upwards who on account of past neglect or use of wrong methods, see with dismay their hair fading, their skin yellowing and becoming course, their figure spreading.

 I shall not be discouraged!

My goodness, who knew you could catch a cold from mustard poultice!

And if all that advice wasn't enough... a little bit of wisdom from Emerson. Spot on, I think!