Archive for July, 2008

We have all been visited by the dreaded lurgy here at Ruth’s Place, after a week of feeling thoroughly miserable (Gorgeous Girl included) we are feeling halfway human again. Apart from those dreadful hacking coughs that winter colds leave behind.

Unfortunately, the sleep training has been undone by her being sick and we are going to need to start again. *sigh*

But fear not! There has been crafting. The cardigan for the local hospital has been blocked and is waiting for the addition of buttons. I found the cutest ones yesterday – now to find time to sew them on. Pictures when buttons are attached. I think they are really going to make the piece pop.

I’ve also been sewing scrap blocks together for the quiltathon. More straight strips and some that are going to be cut on the diagonal at 6 and 1/2 inches. I was going to show you a picture here, but wordpress has done something screwy with the image editor. As a IT support person myself, I went and looked in their support pages for an answer. Lots of posts from users asking about the problem, but so far not a single company response – so pictures will have to wait…

Sad story:

I don’t think I’ll be seeing the quiltathon through to it’s conclusion. There was MAJOR drama in the guild committee this week. Some seriously nasty emails circulating about the guild committee chair from the chair lady. Totally silly, one of the accusations – she hadn’t circulated an agenda in advance of the meeting! I think the phrase “taking ourselves entirely too seriously” applies here. So they had a big meeting today, which I couldn’t attend because I was working. And the chairlady J, and also my best friend on the committee,  resigned. I sent a prepared statement to say that if J resigned I would be handing in my resignation effective after the quiltathon.  I don’t want to work on a committee where I’ll be worried about what the other members are saying behind my back. However, I figured since the quiltathon was my idea I should see it through.


Apparently at the meeting the issue of Gorgeous Girl was again raised. I seriously don’t need that sort of drama in my life. Quilting is one of the few adult things for myself that I do with other adults. It’s my fun time. So I’m going to go to the next meeting to see what is said about the outgoing chairlady and to see if I can find a replacement webmaster for the guild’s website. I’ll also be taking all of the blocks I’ve sewn so far and the donated fabric so if there is any issue at all I can wash my hands and shake the dust off my feet.

The three of us are planning on forming our own sewing group, and I think that will be lots more fun than the guild.

I also had pictures of my latest quilting wip. Somehow all of my sashing blocks have ended up a 1/4 of an inch out, and so I need to trim and resew, but I’m waiting until I’m not sleep deprived to do that.

Oh yes, a few of you asked how my helper got Gorgeous Girl onto her back to carry her African style. I took some in progress shots for you and will post them next time. (If WordPress will let me).

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Forgot to mention the other day that the pictures from the Quilting Guild’s show are up on their website. If you are interested in seeing what South African quilters are doing you can see some examples here. Click on the show tab in the menu.

Yesterday I had to head in to the office for the day. One of our Execs from the US office was out and he wanted to meet with the all the people in our department. Then we got to go out to a fabulous Vietnamese restaurant for lunch. The restaurant had AMAZING views of Table Mountain. Unfortunately, my camera batteries were busy charging, so no pics.

Thanks for all the feedback on the sweater. I’m going to continue (since the mother-to-be tells me that she doesn’t think it’s too girly), but I’ll leave the sleeves until I know the sex, and leave the decorative edging off if the baby is a boy.

No new sewing or knitting to show. I’m trying to get caught up with my blog reading and Gorgeous Girl is not having a good day as far as napping goes. She’s perfectly happy at the moment, but napping isn’t on the agenda.

I keep forgetting to update my reading list:

2008 Book List

25. Golden Deeds by Catherine Chidgey

Oh, yes, I’ve finally given in and joined f@ceb@ok. Love the scrabulous application 🙂

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I mentioned that on Tuesday I spent some time with a friend sorting out the fabric that has been donated for our quiltathon. We’ve had some fabulous stuff donated (orphan blocks and beautiful fabric) and F had already sorted the nicest stuff into kits for quilts – I bought a kit home with me to make a start before the day… but we were left with a lot of odds and ends. Sidebar – F is my inspiration, she’s the reason I’m currently cutting the smallest of my scraps into one inch squares – her quilts are stunning!

Anyway a fair bit of the donated fabric is not, how shall we put this? Quality. There’s some crepe and some polycotton, furnishing fabric etc. Some we put straight into bags to be given to the ladies that make African dolls for the tourist trade – they can use them to dress the dolls. The rest we cut into kits to make blocks. I sewed some up last night. These are going to be true scrap quilts.

These are true scraps. The idea is that each lady in the guild make 4 blocks before the day and bring them then put them in a big pile in the middle of the room and use blocks from that pile to make 4 patches. These are the examples to show to guild ladies. I think they will be fine sewn together.

I’m back to my ‘Days of the week’ crafting now that my big hand quilting project is out of the way. Thursday is sew from my list of miscellaneous items that I want to make. Those of you who know me well won’t be surprised to know that it’s alphabetised. So the current project is an Advent calendar – I was making good progress until Gorgeous Girl had a meltdown.

The pockets are going to be some blocks I won from one of Kate’s giveaways. (I have to admit that I’m kind of worried that it’s July and I’m still in the As).

In addition to the Days of the week projects I’m also trying to make sure that I spend at least half an hour a day working on a quilting project. I work a 7 pm to 9 pm shift and it’s a good way to unwind before bed (I work from home, so it’s only 4 steps from the computer to the sewing machine). I looked at my wish list of quilts I want to make the other day and discovered that at my current rate of quilt completion I’ll need to live to 160 to get them all done.

Anyway here is a sneak peak of the current quilt in progress.

Finally, a question. I’m making this sweater for a baby – sex unknown

Be honest, do you think it’s too girly? I’m making it in size 6 – 9 months. Feedback greatly appreciated! I’m spending half of my time thinking ‘it’s fine’ and the other half thinking ‘too girly’ and it’s driving me nuts!

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After what seemed like weeks of uninterrupted rain (so much rain that I went out and bought a clothes drier to get Gorgeous Girl’s nappies dry) Sunday was a beautiful winter day.

Gorgeous Man and I bundled Gorgeous Girl into the car and decided to take a trip along the coast to Rooi Els. Rooi Els (if I understand correctly, means Red River, and the river, where it meets the sea is certainly red from all of the tannins flowing from the fynbos).

Usually the sea has quite large swells, but on Sunday it was like glass.

I took this from the window of the car, so please excuse the blurry bushes in the foreground. Whale migration season is beginning and we saw a whale from the car – that is always very cool.

We went for a short walk.

We would have walked further, but Gorgeous Girl got a bit fussy.

Here is some of the scenery.

Fabulous mountains on one side and sea on the other.

Gorgeous Man spotted a bird that he had been wanting to see for ages, so Gorgeous Girl and I sat down to wait while he went to see if he could get closer.

There were also proteas out. I love proteas – there is such a huge variety.

This was the view from the mountain.

Across the bay towards Cape Point.

Finally, on the way home we stopped to get a shot of the snow on the mountains.

Right at the very top if you look closely.

Yesterday I spent some time with a quilting friend sorting through fabric that has been donated for our charity quiltathon in September. We cut up a few kits so that some of the ladies can pre-sew blocks before the day, then just assemble them into tops on the day. Pictures of that in the next post. Work on Gorgeous Girl’s quilt is also progressing nicely so I’ll lay those blocks out and get shots of it too.

And I’ll have a knitting question for all the knitters out there. Hopefully it won’t be a week before I get to post again.

As far as blog reading goes, I’m very behind. I’m lucky to be getting to all my blogs once a week. Guess that’s a sign that I need to cut back… but it’s so hard!

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So I did my white glove duty at the show on Thursday. Wow, there were some stunning quilts! There was beautiful embroidery as well, with some stunning hand dyed linen for sale. I don’t embroider, but I was seriously tempted by the linen! There were also lace makers. I had a go at making bobbin lace. I enjoyed that and could see myself doing it, but in the end what can you do with all that lace you make? So it’s probably a hobby that I won’t be taking up any time soon.  Especially because, you know, I’ve got so much time on my hands.

They were very serious about the whole no photo thing. I honestly don’t understand it because I had permission to photograph for the guild website – so it’s ok for me to take pictures and plaster them all over the internet, but it wasn’t ok for someone to snap a pic with their cell phone? Anyway so I’m there merrily taking pictures and the white glove ladies from the embroidery guild were so upset that I was nearly rugby tackled to the floor and my camera confiscated. Fortunately, I was able to explain in time 🙂

I will be putting all of the photos from the show on to the guild’s website – just not today since we have guests for dinner and I need to go and make soup before heading back to work (across the room on the other computer).

If you would like to see show and tell from the last 2 guild meetings you can go to the Helderberg Quilters Guild website and click on the gallery pages. But seriously those quilts pale in comparison to the quilts display at the show.

My little African animal quilt was there: displayed next to the most magnificent baragelloesque quilt done with stunning African fabrics, which made it look rather like the poor cousin.

I’ll let you know when I have created a page for the show. Ok PSA: if you want to create a website for your guild or club consider this company. It’s very easy to use – you don’t need any technical background and it’s free.

The Chocolate Cat has hinted that perhaps it is time for another picture of Gorgeous Girl:who am I to deny her fans lol

Destroying the shopping dockets.

There has been reading:

2008 Book List

24. Desert Rose – Mary Weijun Collins

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Touching Base

Hi there, didn’t mean to go MIA again.

Amy tagged me for a 7 random things about me meme so here goes:

1. I’m not very sociable in real life. I’m happy with my own company and that of Gorgeous Man’s, and of course, all my friends that live in the computer. I think moving so often has contributed to that. My knitting buddy moved to Ireland last week (I got her back into knitting and started her on her way to a stash 🙂 ), it was very sad to say good-bye to her, so I told her she wasn’t really leaving, just going to live inside my computer 🙂

2. I have no trouble talking or singing in front of large crowds of people. The largest crowd I’ve ever sung for was about 6000 last year at the Vergelegen Carols By Candlelight at Christmas when I was the soloist for the event.

3. I taught myself to tat. In the days before the internet. I tried 6 out of the 7 techniques in the book before I got one that worked for me and it was 3 years before I finished anything because it took me that long to work out how to fix mistakes. I saw a woman tatting once and was fascinated, but she was left handed and couldn’t teach me.

4. I am the queen of good intentions, but procrastinate like mad.

5. Speaking of procrastination: any type of form paralyzes me. I still haven’t registered Gorgeous Girl’s birth with the Australian Embassy or gotten her a passport. Now that I’ve put this out there hopefully I will get to it this week.

6. I wish I could draw.

7. My name is Ruth and I’m a scrapbooking addict.

If you want to play along please do, leave me a note so that I can see your responses.

There has been more scrapping – see, I even know the lingo. I did another page on Sunday and then halfway through my first double page spread of Gorgeous Girl’s first visit to Father Christmas I decided that I needed more supplies, so off to the store for some Christmas lettering tomorrow.

We had quilting guild today. I took Gorgeous Girl with me and my helper. So she took Gorgeous Girl out for a while, and held her while I attended to my committee duties – photographing the quilts for the guild’s website.

One of the disadvantages of working for the company that I used to build the site with is that I know what new features are coming. So this month’s photos won’t be uploaded to the guild’s site until next week when we have a great new photography feature being made available. 🙂

Much to my delight there were two other babies at the guild meeting. Bringing the number up to three! So the guild is just going to have to come to terms with prams and babies at the back of the hall. Gorgeous Girl is the darling of the guild. She thinks that the guild exists exclusively to kiss and cuddle her. Seriously, she holds out her arms to all of the Tannies (auntie) to be held and petted. The other babies are much less attention seeking…

I showed the African Animals quilt for show and tell time, and then left it there. We are having an exhibition along with the local lace and embroidery guilds and so the quilt is going to be on show. I’ll be taking pictures of the exhibition for the guild’s website, and will probably share some of the work here so you can see a broader glimpse of quilting in South Africa rather than just my work. I’m doing white glove duty on Thursday.

Well, Gorgeous Girl is currently working herself into hysteria because she doesn’t want to sleep, so I’d better go and see to that. Gorgeous Man is making mushroom and lentil soup and it smells divine – because the lentils are the dried variety it won’t be ready to eat tonight, but lovely to know that it’ll be in the fridge for tomorrow. 🙂

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