Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas Aftermath

Yesterday afternoon we joined the exodus from Wellington. It took us 100 minutes to travel 21 km on the national highway - what a disgrace! There was no accident holding the traffic up, just the bottlenecks at Waikanae and Otaki.
I know, my moaning about it isn't going to change it - this has been a problem for many years.
I wanted to show you a photo of a 'Santa' gift to each of the girls - it was inexpensive but will be heaps of fun! This is Rebecca watering her garden at night with an aquatorch!
It also comes with a red and a green cover so you can change the light!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Holidays!

 Wishing you all happy holidays, great time with family, time to relax and enjoy good food.
Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving comments.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Quilting Is Finished

Yes, I've finally finished the quilting on another Symposium challenge. And because I can't show you the quilt, here's a teaser:
Thanks to Leah Day for some of the great quilting designs I have used. You see the feather on the light fabric at the top left hand? well, that's the ONLY feather quilting I have done in the 1m x 0.6m background. There are no flower designs either.
Just have to do the binding, decide on a title and put on the hanging sleeve.

Monday, December 13, 2010

We Are Published!

S.I.X. has a double page spread in the latest New Zealand Quilter magazine which arrived in my mail box this morning. This is the 6" x 12" challenge Facets of a Rectangle where we exhibited at Taylor Jensen Gallery (you can see the photos in the August archives). I am pretty excited that 2 of my pieces were chosen to be published, and the biggest photo is the triptych of the fantails. I have to admit that I was quite concerned with my entries, because they were so very different than the others' works. I mean, look at the monarch triptych! and the bark selection! In the end, I guess you have to be true to yourself. It was an exhibition of 6 individuals' work and we all have different strengths, time to trial/experiment, and vastly different ideas. Sure, the others sold pieces and I didn't (I was a little sad about that), but then some of the world's greatest artists didn't have their work recognised until after they had died (please, I don't want that to happen!!).

S.I.X. Have a Play Day

Well, we have all been very busy, but had promised ourselves a play day and also to sort out our next group challenge. Fortunately it was a warm afternoon without too much wind, so we could dry our things outside - also we needed plenty of ventilation for what we were working with. In the USA you would use Citra Solv, here in NZ we have found that D-Limonene (from a cleaning supplies store) does the same thing. Some of us tried different magazines, but, believe me National Geographic has the BEST results.

Sue used plenty of liquid!

This one I had plastic wrap over the top

Sue used lots of cleaning fluid and lost some colour from her pages, but the effects were very dramatic. Cheryl found ghost pictures of people appearing from the reverse of the page or the opposite - so cool! You have to use gloves otherwise your fingers get covered in printers ink - which does come off, but stays under the nails for longer.
I think that next time I will halve the magazine first and have a look at the pages deciding which ones to fold, cover with plastic wrap, etc. Working with damp gloves it was quite difficult to separate pages, especially when you needed to tear them out and lay them out to dry. But a GREAT afternoon.
Now to using the pages - some will end up being scanned and printed on to fabric - who needs to buy when you can make your own - even over-printing!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Finding Family History

After the final keynote speech today, I went for a walk to see if I could find where my great-great-great-aunt Laura lived in Forth Street, Dunedin. She died some 30 years ago and I was interested to see if her last house was still 'standing'. Well, here we are:
It looks as if it's a student flat now and it is surrounded by the Otago Polytechnic. The outside is a much darker colour, there is no front garden and Aunt Laura's beloved lions are no longer at the front entrance - BUT at least it is still there and it doesn't look as bad as some other old bungalows.
I have one more day of conference tomorrow and then fly back to Palmerston North. It's been lovely to come back, walk the streets, take lots of photos and have lots of librarians to talk to. Looking forward to my own bed though!!

Some Peace

After a couple of days of conference being surrounded by lots of people, I was drawn into All Saints Anglican Church (the oldest church in Dunedin, just up the road from the University). It was late afternoon, the door was open and there was no one around. The smell was just beautiful - incense, wood and history.

This is the window above the main entry.
I hope to be able to enjoy a few minutes tomorrow before leaving for home.

Ironwork and Verandahs

A few years ago I was looking for fretwork or ironwork, to use in an art quilt I was making. It was about New Orleans so I looked on the internet for photos that were appropriate. But I hadn't realised that our very own Dunedin has many excellent examples of ironwork. Here are a few photos I have taken of places near where I am staying on Great King Street:

Some great designs for future use I'm sure!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Off to Conference

I'm lucky enough to be allowed to go to LIANZA Conference this year - it's the 100th celebration of the association and it's in Dunedin. Dunedin is my old family home, although I don't know of any relatives living there anymore (haven't kept in touch, basically!). So I am armed with the camera, walking shoes, and of course notebook for taking notes during the conference proceedings! First off is a tour of the Dunedin Public Library early Sunday morning - I'm hoping to watch the All Blacks play Wales and get to the pick up point in plenty of time.
I'm also borrowing Derrick's laptop so hope to be able to do a posting or 2.
See you!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Christmas Has Come Early at the 'Farm'

Well it sure feels like it! The weather has been beautiful and warm and we have finally got someone in to do the fencing in the house paddock.
Here is the temporary fence we had for a few years, but the hoggets could easily jump or push their way through, so it had to go.
Here is the new fence in approximately the same area:

The view from the deck and living areas of the house - no batons!
And even a new fence to divide up the area (2 paddocks from one):
We have had posts driven into the ground near the barn so that small yards and loading ramp can be built - that way I will be able to drench and other things with the sheep. But, that is not going to happen overnight and I am really happy with having new fences, gates and paddocks!

Monday, November 15, 2010

It Hasn't All Been About a Lamb!

I know it looks like I have been playing with the lamb, but honestly! I've been busy with other things.
Firstly, in the morning I have been gardening - yes! shock! horror! the g word. This means that lambie and dog can help - or watch. All my hanging baskets are re-vegetated, and strawberries and tomatoes are potted up. Yesterday we fixed up the fence where the sheep had broken a bit in their effort to commute between paddocks - well, they are smart, but just can't physically manage the gate latch!
I have also managed a small amount of sewing. Zonta have a craft fundraising evening this Friday night, so I have made these table runners to add to the pile of quilts I would LOVE to sell!
I have also made this pattern up in New Zealand fabrics, but haven't got around to quilting it yet. I love how easy it is to change the look with so few fabrics

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Giveaway to Visit

Fellow quilter and 'bag lady', Helen, aka Aunt Henny, in Australia is having a giveaway to celebrate 100 followers! She has made 2 beautiful bags with fat quarters she won on Quilting Bloggers weekly themed quilt contest a wee while ago. Even if you are not currently one of her followers, you can register as a new follower, because she 2 draws (1st for the first 100 followers and another for the 2nd 100 followers).

How Smart Is This?

What do you think she's up to?
Yep! Got it figured that she can beat Mum and can feed herself!
and not yet 3 weeks old.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Some Time for Cuddles!

Sarah came home at the weekend - she needed some cuddle-time with the dog and the lamb (as you do).
This is a favourite cuddle-time photo:
mutual enjoyment, I think!
Now for some walking training:
We also docked and vaccinated the lambs using Beauty as an 'enticer'. We think she helped calm the mothers and lambs - certainly she was OK being with the flock. So, out of 10 lambs we only have 3 females - not a good ratio.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

An Update on the Lil' Beauty

I have been asked for an update on Lil' Beauty, so here we have her at 2 weeks:
17 inches high at 2 weeks
and here she is greeting me in the morning - jumping up to see out of her 'pen':
She is experiencing her first rain tonight, so hopefully there is enough shelter under the trees!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Caring For the Animals

It can be really hard, because you have live stock and then there's dead stock. I lost the little lamb in the last post, but I managed to get some very good care for her mother, who is now doing well. The mother, Rosie, had mastitis so was unable to care for her twins and probably didn't give them any colostrum. That doesn't bode well for any newborn.
It's been a long hard weekend, but we now have 10 lambs which include 3.5 sets of twins. One of the ewes couldn't deliver her 2nd twin so Derrick now has his assisted delivery certificate (a breach stillborn lamb), mother is still marginal. Here is her surviving daughter which I am bottle feeding:
On Saturday morning I found that Lila (a neighbour's Dorper ewe which visited with her twin boys, and has stayed for almost 12 months) had delivered twin males, and again one is black and the other is white:
Lila and her new 'boys'
Only a couple of ewes left to lamb. Hopefully the weather will be a little more settled for a few more days.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

It's Sprinter!

Well, how else do you explain the spring/winter weather in one day. This morning I woke to find that one of my lambs had died overnight and his twin sister wasn't looking too good either! Poor Mum! she was struggling to feed I think - her udder is very tight. So I brought the little one into shelter - actually the glass recycling bin plus an old quilt - feed her and let her sleep in the warmth. Took her to her Mum this afternoon, only to find it hailing! Then when I was at work people were coming and telling me how cold it was outside and that there was snow on the ranges! So I've been coaxing Mum into the house paddock where there is a small barn - at least shelter from the wind and rain and I don't have to keep climbing up to the top paddock to catch a lamb to feed it (actually it isn't that far, I'm just not fit enough!).
Special Treatment!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Yay! At Long Last!

We have catkins on our walnut tree! It's only about 9 years old, but we were told that it would start 'fruiting' from 7 years - so ...
Walnut catkins

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

More Citrus Preserves

Today's batch of lemon curd and both Moroccan Lemons and Limes - yummy!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

What To Do With...

... a plethora of eggs and limes?
Make lime curd and pavlova roulades!
Limes (I see that these are currently $13.99 at the supermarket!):
Now for the juicing:
This takes a while, but can't be rushed:
Then, yummy, yummy!
Now, to use up all the egg whites.
This is the hardest part:
Gently does the cooking:
A little later, one mixed berry and one passion fruit (these are just over $2.00 a piece of fruit!, I think I'd better get some vines!)
I did find it difficult rolling the pavlovas, so let the cream/fruit mixture sit on the top for a few minutes before rolling. Now, into the freezer and I will wrap in foil when they are easier to handle.
Great presents!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

A Bus Trip to Wellington

Today I joined 47 other Rose City Quilters members for a bus trip to Wellington to see 2 quilt shows. One was at Upper Hutt for Pinestream Quilters, and the other was in Kilbirnie, for the Wellington Quilters Guild 20th anniversary Under covers.
We had a lovely day - no worries about parking, driving, the rain on the way down and the wind on the way back!
Here is a close up of the quilting design on a wool quilt (quilt pattern is Amish Square in a Square):
Aotearoa Amish by Fyvie Murray
Plus, this quilt, I really loved the simplicity of colour and design:
Strata III by Debra DeLorenzo
Here is a close inspection of the coloured strip and the surrounding blocks:
I also love the straight line quilting - very effective.
Great day!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Welcome Home

The welcome committee - new members x 12 - when I came home this evening.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Cot Quilt for a Little Girl

Flower Fairies
Very simply put together, measures 33.5" x 52" (85cm x 132cm). Quilted with flowers, vines and leaves in the sashings and feathers in the border. Backed with the same fabric.
Now on for some serious stuff - a symposium challenge to continue working on.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

A Glimpse into a Thursday

It's raining yet again, but I walked Chloe when it was warmer and drier earlier, which makes it more enjoyable.
I finally got around to preserving some of the limes
made 2lb of tamarillos into chutney
 which unfortunately got a little burnt on the bottom of the pot, because I was distracted by this
and then there is one hogget on the wrong side of the fence - she knows that the grass is not only greener, but lusher, and I can't get her back with the others!
Take a look at the expression on her face - defiant!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Beautiful Blue Flowers

I need to share this photo I took of the Chatham Island Forget-me-knots in my garden, which are coming into flower.
Chatham Island Forget-me-knots
We have had so much rain that the leaves are huge, too!