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Archive for September, 2013

I finished two pieces of knitting recently. They are currently sitting on  a shelf waiting to be put into a ziplock bag and packed away for when we are in a colder place…

Firstly a linen stitch scarf from two balls of left over sock yarn. I love how this turned out. I keep eyeing the stash to see what other combinations I can put together.

Secondly, I finished a beaded silk cowl from handspun yarn. This was also left over from another project. It seems I’m all about using up the scraps at the moment.

I had the urge to sew this weekend. I added another two borders to the Very Hungry Caterpillar Quilt. No photos. My design floor is currently occupied with train tracks… and then because I didn’t want to do the maths required to add another border I played with some scraps.

Here’s the scrap block before trimming.

It looks like a bit of a dog’s breakfast. There’s some left over fabric from my quilt in there, some scraps Kate sent me a while ago, some Saffron Craig fabric I found in an Op Shop (thrift store) and some fabric that I received from retiring quilters. I don’t foundation piece these. I just have a template next to my sewing machine that I measure against – it’s slightly larger than the size I trim to.

Then the block is trimmed.

And at some point they will be sewn together.

I find it amazing how well such a random selection of fabrics go together. I have piles of fabric set up and take the first one that fits in the space. The only proviso is that I don’t use the same fabric twice in a block.

I also made some cards, but sealed up the envelopes before I remembered to take a picture. I’m a bad blogger.

In other news we finally got insurance approval last week (for the car accident I had on the 14th of May). Our next door neighbour actually used photos of our car at a presentation he was giving at a conference on insurance in developing nations. We were his example of bad practice since it had taken so long to be processed. Anyway, we dropped the car off this morning to be repaired. Hopefully it won’t take too long to get done.

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A wedding

Hi. It’s been a while since I posted. Gorgeous Girl and I went to Perth, Western Australia for a wedding.

She got to wear a pretty dress.

Because it was cold we bought a cardigan and some leggings to try and keep her a bit warmer.

There was a beautiful hairpiece (thank you Target for accessories and shoes).

She tossed some flowers on the ground.

Vows were said

and the grooms danced down the aisle.

There was fabulous food and a stunning wedding cake.

A few days after the wedding, the quilt was finally delivered. (It took me longer to sew down the binding than anticipated).

It was just a short trip away, but there was still time for jigsaws with Grandma.

It was a long trip home; an overnight flight from Perth to Brisbane, with a 4+ hour wait in Brisbane airport. Fortunately Gorgeous Girl is a very good traveller, she didn’t get fussy or cranky, there were no melt-downs. In Brisbane she asked for fruit salad for breakfast and then curled up and slept for three hours.

Tip for travellers flying the Brisbane-Perth route: Virgin does not provide blankets or pillows and the air conditioning on the plane was freezing. We had Gorgeous Girl’s blankie to keep us warm (despite a row to ourselves she slept on my lap for the first 2 hours of the flight), the dog blanket in the picture was bought in Perth for the trip home…

The gate that the planes to PNG (and other smaller less common destinations) depart from has couches instead of chairs with arm rests, so I was able to put my feet up and read. The gate was used for a flight before ours and Gorgeous Girl slept through the filling up of the gate and the hustle of that plane boarding. Of course this meant that she was far more rested than I was. I fell asleep during the safety demonstration and woke up to Gorgeous Girl poking me to tell me that we had taken off.

There was a lot of knitting as we did a lot of running around and I knitted in the car. Pictures as soon as the ends are woven in.

 

 

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This year marks Papua New Guinea’s 38th year of Independence. Each year Gorgeous Girl’s school puts on a concert celebrating the cultural diversity that makes up PNG. Each class dresses in traditional clothes from different regions and does a dance or sings a song from that area. PNG has over 800 different languages, so there are a lot to choose from.

Here’s my Gorgeous Girl dressed up. I snapped this after her performance. Her class was performing a dance from New Ireland.

With her class.

Some of the other classes.

I hope you enjoyed a little peek into our celebrations here.

I’ll be offline for a week or so. Talk to you when I get back.

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I felt a little bit inspired with the scrapbooking recently (and the hundreds of photos waiting to be done were starting to look at me accusingly). So I decided to work on a mini-album from Brazil. I chose to just use pictures from the Pantanal. The photos from other places will get scrapped in a 12×12 album.

This was a nice easy way to ease back into the scrapbooking since I made the album before we left for Brazil. All I needed to do was add pictures and a few embellishments. Here’s the cover page.

The tag on the album cover is ancient. It’s made from paper that I dyed using shaving foam and instant coffee, then on a holiday with my SIL she taught me how to do a collage type look with stamps and this is the result. This happened before Gorgeous Man and I left for South Africa, so it’s at least 9 or 10 years old. Do any of you have stash that old? Or is it just me with the hoarding gene?

A sample of a few pages from the album. Don’t want to bore you…

This last page is one of my favourite photos of Gorgeous Girl. It really shows how fearless she is and how she will grab life by the horns and tackle it head on.

After being attached by a rope to the lead horse for about 5 minutes Gorgeous Girl insisted that she was able to ‘steer the horse’ on her own, and she did. Her main complaint was that her horse did not move fast enough. I need to find some more rings to hold it together, I’ll do that when I’m in Australia next week.

It’s been a bit of a sad day here at Ruthsplace. On Wednesday we came into ownership of a very young baby dove which had been found on the ground. It was very weak and we tried to prepare our animal loving Gorgeous Girl that it probably wouldn’t live through the night. It did, and it perked up a bit. We managed to get it to drink some water, but couldn’t get it to eat enough.

It flew a little bit around the house and so this morning Gorgeous Man and Gorgeous Girl took him to some protected bushes and turned him loose to fend for himself. He wasn’t in the little nest they had made for him when we went to check this afternoon, so hopefully he’s found some food and somewhere safe to roost…

But Gorgeous Girl is most upset at losing her pet.

Gorgeous Girl and I are flying to Perth next week. I’ll be offline for most of the time, so this will probably be my last post for a while. I’m expecting to have lots of “so cute you can’t it” photos when we get back.

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The garden is a work in progress. The cucumbers are doing really well. They’ve only been in for a few weeks.

The plants on the far left of the picture are zucchini. We also have tomatoes and rock melon in as well. This picture shows the garden in it’s full glory.

I love the banana trees. It’s the dry season here at the moment, so it’s very hot and dry.

There’s been knitting going on. I’m loving this beaded cowl. It’s from handspun. It’s leftover from a shawl I knitted in 2010.

Details on Ravelry.

Because beads and lace are too complicated to take out of the house I cast on for some take along knitting. I took these two balls of Nurturing Fibres sock yarn and paired them up.

The ball on the left is left over from socks and the one on the right is left over from a hat. I’m turning it into this linen stitched scarf.

At 400 stitches per row it’s taking a while to build up width. I have to admit that I’m loving this stitch and the effect of the colours shifting as I knit.

I also finished spinning some silk. It hasn’t been washed or set yet. There’s been fires around and I haven’t wanted to put it outside to dry.

I’m pretty pleased with this. I think it’s actually thin enough to embroider with if I was so inclined.

 

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We are privileged to live in a culturally diverse community. This weekend the students from Vanuatu held a fund raising event and so Gorgeous Man, Gorgeous Girl and I went along.

I love that we can take Gorgeous Girl to an event and she’ll hear songs in 6 different languages/dialects and see dances from two additional countries. After the speeches we had a traditional dinner.

There was kaukau (sweet potato) cooked in banana leaves under the ground.

The darker purpley ones are cooked banana.

When I was at university (for the first time) I had a lot of Polynesian friends, so I was happy to see taro on the menu. This was cooked in coconut milk and was very nice.

Gorgeous Man and Gorgeous Girl are not fans of taro.

This last one was interesting. I went back after everyone had finished eating to take pictures, so it’s a bit of a mess.

This is yams which are mixed into a paste and then cooked in a ring around the bowl in the centre. (The cooking container is made from banana leaves and is also cooked below ground). The bowl in the centre is filled with onions and coconut milk. You slice a piece of the yam material off and dip it in the coconut milk.

I love that Gorgeous Girl is an adventurous eater and will try new foods.

After the food there was dancing and singing. Firstly the girls from Kiribati (pronounced Kiribas) danced.

There was some Samoan dancing as well.

I had some very good friends who were Samoan. Both of whom have passed away, so this dance made me smile and brought back many happy memories. I have better photos than this, but I’m trying to respect people’s privacy while at the same time show a little of what we experienced.

I also have pictures of the garden, but will save them for next time.

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Today is one of the hottest days we’ve had for a while (which is saying something, because everyday is hot here…). I’m hoping the neighbours didn’t see me in a wool hat standing on the balcony taking pictures of myself.

It was bright out as well.

Looking like my big 40 birthday is rapidly approaching. I don’t wear much make up here, it just sweats off, and I definitely need a haircut, but will wait another 10 days and get it done in Western Australia.

Here’s the top of the hat. I love the colours in this yarn.

Pattern is Runway . A donation of the pattern sales goes to a worthy cause. You can find more details about my hat here. 

I did this as a KAL. I might have been a bit too speedy, so far only one person in the group has posted a progress picture… I guess I have no life…

Because I’m not just a one trick pony, there has also been some sewing going on.

Finally working up some of those many placemat panels I bought before we left South Africa.

As you can see they don’t sit square – they are printed skew on the fabric. But I’m hoping that when they are around the table individually it won’t matter. These are earmarked for Christmas gifts.

Finally, one last batch of the purple merino measured and caked up. 173 metres to 75 grams.

It’s super soft and fluffy. Since I have a whole bunch  of this colourway I’m going to need to find a big project for it.

Father’s Day here today. We started the day with a cooked breakfast and will probably go out for lunch. We can’t go out for dinner because it’s too dangerous to drive back home in the dark. Gorgeous Man and Gorgeous Girl have been down to the lake to feed the giant fish.

In other news, yesterday I went for a walk with Gorgeous Man and Gorgeous Girl.  I managed. I did start to feel a bit sore on the homeward leg – and we didn’t go far…I did have to take some anti-inflammatories when we got home, but there were no major repercussions this morning. So I can see progress happening slowly.

This year we’ve planted a little garden. We’ve put in tomatoes, cucumber, rock melon, and courgettes. When I find some pots so that it can grow in the shade we’ll plant some basil. One thing that is a surprise to us is how fast things grow. The cucumbers came up three days after planting and I swear you can see them get bigger from one day to the next. I’ll take some pictures this afternoon when things cool down a little.

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