Saturday, April 28, 2012


The week got off to a crashing start, we have been waiting to have our bathroom updated, and this week the builders arrived and made a start!  it really is a rustic look.  Hopefully next week it will be looking more inviting and have some of the necessities...whilst indoors noise levels were very high  it was a more gentle atmosphere outdoors.
The maples and pin oaks are almost bare,

others cling to last vestiges of summer, we have had sunny days and summer temperatures with virtually no rain,

this morning when walking to the river the clouds looked full of promise 
and this afternoon we have  beautiful steady rain watering the garden and filling our water tanks. Perfect for giving all the plants I put in today, stock, aquilegias, daisies and pansies, a good start.
Perfect also to have the fire lit, cup of tea in hand and delight in the new stitching book that arrived this week,
lots of stitchy goodness to be had in these pages!!!!

The rain and slight breath of wind has stirred some tiny insects into action and 2 very pretty visitors arrived to take advantage, only one was prepared to sit still long enough to have her photo taken while her friend continued to flit around.
NZ Fantail
Maybe by the next post we will have a functional bathroom  once really does make you appreciate how much we take modern life for granted.
PS.  the tomatoe yield this week....8!
PPs. the crochet flower addiction continues! 

Saturday, April 21, 2012


I have been waiting for some  cold, wet crafting type days but the weather is beautiful with warm temperatures and sunny skies, fantastic for getting into the garden.  There comes a time  though when you just have to make something! Last year I knitted a few pairs of these handwarmers and a friend requested a pair, so before winter arrives I thought I should get them done.  They are fun to knit up and all they require to finish them  is a little pearl in the centre of each rose. Last seasons mitts had the knitted rose's as the pattern directed but they felt a little heavy so have used a crochet rose this time.
The book is a Paton's one, the patterns are lovely and knit up so well. I have knitted slippers and the scarf shown on the cover and have been pleased with them.
The evenings are closing in, the sunsets have been beautiful, and in the paddocks behind our house after a warm day,
 fog has been clinging to the land in the  hollows...
A friend gave me some crab apples, they speak to me of autumn, and another gave me some golden quinces , the perfume is heavenly.

A friend and I go for walks to the river and on the way home the sun sinks below the horizon, trees have been losing their leaves its all so peaceful and tranquil winding down for the evening.
It won't be very tranquil here this week though, we have a builder coming to renovate our bathroom!  yay! it really needs a freshen up, so after the messy bit is over we will be very happy chappies.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

The parcel!!

A short week is exactly that, it went past in a blur.  I have weeks that seem sooooo busy, just racing around doing things and then wondering at the end, 'what did I achieve?'  Its been one of those weeks for me...however, its not all my fault!  The crochet flower books should come with warnings of addiction!!  I have made more pansies and lots of other little borage flowers, some in lemon, which look like dainty little primroses.  I made some for a friend too.  The heartsease pansies look lovely with their 'whiskers' embroidered on.
We got a parcel this weekend it was a belated easter one, it was big and exciting, I think the postie wanted to stay and watch us open it actually!!! 
It was from Thrifty Fox. ( )
some lovely thrifted Mohair ...oh the possibilities, some knitting magazines,some beautifully illustrated children's books (I have somewhat of a love for these) chocolate bunnies, yum! and cute wee toadstool pegs, oh way  too cute.
some interesting articles on seaweed, keeping bees, garlic and a vegetable storage set of drawers to construct, a letter...

a white top to float about in next summer with delicate lacey edging....
a Hans Christian Andersen book called It's Absolutely True!, about some gossiping hens and how things can get so out of proportion, as anyone with chooks will know, they often do look as if they are having a real chat session . The illustrations in this book capture the personality of hens so well...and some chocolate chickens , much too young and little to cause trouble with gossipy cheeping.

This little book is totally delightful, I must look out for some more of this lady's work. 
Tucked into the parcel were a couple of coffee bags, which i have been wanting , hoping to make some outdoors cushions for the verandah and perhaps a totebag. 
Thankyou Thrifty Fox.

The husband was doing a little preserving this weekend,
making his Plum Gin, it involves Black Doris Plums, Gin and sugar, all put together in large jars and  left for about 6 months...much checking of this brew goes on over this time...finally the liquid is drained off and bottled, then sparingly drunk....making it last as long as is a much loved tipple.

On the beverage subject, I have been partaking of my Rhubarb Champagne, I  made another  batch a couple of weeks ago, it is delectable and really refreshing,and very simple to make.

Rhubarb Champagne Recipe

2 Kilos Rhubarb
1 1/2 kilos Sugar
3 tablespoons White wine vinegar
juice and grated rind of 4  lemons
10 litres of water

Chop up Rhubarb, combine all ingreds in a bucket (it helps to dissolve the sugar in some of the water warmed) leave in a  cool place for 48 hours.
Clear off all solids and strain well.
Store in bottles,can be plastic bottles. Leave 1 week prior to drinking.

...and yes, the tomatoes just keep on keeping on.... we have had tomato soup this week...and yes there are more coming along in the tunnel house.

I did get some gardening done too, the weather has been kind. Some more Hazelnuts were picked up...and so went the week.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Happy Easter

Happy Easter days of sun and leisure, chocolate eggs and a good book, some of our eggs came in a basket.
this bunny came home with us from Melbourne, I love him!

we actually ate some healthy non chocolate eggs over the weekend, and popped some of "The Fairy" rose into one of the empty shells - it's such a wonderful flowering, healthy rose and perfect for picking.
A night at the beach was wonderful, lots of swimming in the sea, the hubby went biking, lots of reading and some crochet with a garden/flowery touch.  I  have had the book for ages and thought it time to actually get my hook out and get hooking....

some still need some of the ends sewn in,

these were such fun to make, I can't wait to  make some more. I have some ideas of what I want to do with them  so will do some more of this 'clean hands' gardening!
Still with the garden theme, I found this lovely longstitch picture at the Hospice Shop on Thursday, will make it into a cushion...
Hints of autumn in the garden...we are having such lovely warm and sunny weather easing us into winter  gently maybe...

We started harvesting our hazelnuts for the season - we pick them up by hand
it was very pleasant
 with the sun shining on our backs, and some stops for cups of tea from the thermette
Working at the kitchen bench has been a pleasure the last few days as a  friend dropped off this highly scented bunch of sweet peas,  the whole room has been perfumed and they are so pretty too. 
gosh long weekends go very fast, but then again,this will seem like a "short" week, and the weather forecast is for rain...maybe some more hooky flower gardening might be happening round here.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

more on Melbourne

Oh the Great Ocean Road.....we did a little detour to a big warehouse called KYO, its at Ocean Grove,the words of that old song "...I'm going back one day, come what may to ...", well that"s me, It was AMAZING! and oh so cruelly tempting for a sea loving person like myself, so many glass fishing floats, (I got a few) and all things nautical , antique furniture from exotic countries, moroccan lanterns, ( so  incredibly beautiful) tiles (I got a few), ceramic door knobs(I got 3, pale blue with white spots!) beads, and so so much more!!
On the way back to Melbourne we called at a beach not far  from Port Campbell,
the waves were enormous and the roar of the sea was deafening, some people got pretty excited..
others kept their feet firmly on the ground.
the photos don't show how wild the sea was.
We called in at a Walk in the Tops tourist stop, walkways very high in the trees
The Bush was so beautiful and some of it was very like NZ bush, there were a lot of tree ferns in the lower canopy, I guess both countries got some when Gondwana land split up.
One of  our most special moments on the trip was getting up close and personal to  this little guy and some of his friends on the road side!!    It took a  lot to drag ourselves away, we never imagined seeing Koala's in the wild.
we saw some Wallabies in the same area...glad we didn't see any of these though

(snake sign at tree top walk, we 3 kiwi's were very cautious and certainly kept a wary eye out!!! )
We saw some beautiful painted bollards at Geelong

some whimsical art on the side of a garage also on the journey

On a cooler,  more leisurely day we visited the Melbourne Library a beautiful historic building,
There was a little shopping fitted in too, we had a wonderful  time, and came home to heaps of ripened funny!!! some of which have now been made into soup and put in the very full Deep Freeze! I am going to have to get very creative in a tomatoe sort of way again yet more turn a rosy hue...maybe I could put some out for the easter bunny!


After a frantic lot of soup making, spaghetti freezing and various other ways of processing and freezing tomatoes, but I am not complaining about our humongous crop of Toms, also a day at art, watercolour poppies,
my teacher tells me to just keep  practising...
It was great to get to Melbourne and see our youngest daughter.To stay in her wee apartment ( look out the window and think that maybe be you were in France, the courtyard below, complete with fountains, unfortunately the neighbouring apartment's, was  such a lovely peaceful view)
We had such lovely weather, almost a little hot for us sometimes!!! We were shown lots of pretty places, had a picnic in the gardens, daughter and hubby had a day at the Grand Prix, I opted to catch the train into the city and visit the art gallery, it was amazing, time went all too quickly, the ceiling in the foyer is all stained glass and very beautiful.

A very touching visit to the Melbourne Shrine of Rememberance, it was so quiet and tranquil, the statues were beautiful, we loved this one especially.

there was a beautiful verse on the plinth
We had a very hot and sunny walk from Brighton beach to StKilda, I took a couple of dips along the way and the water was oh so warm, the beach huts are so cute...

This one had such beautifully painted seagulls..and somehow the colours of the hut remind me of icecream...?

We had a couple of days  going up the Great Ocean Road.
We were awe inspired by these ...amazing
This had been sculpted by wind and weather into what looks like a castle was all quite  magical and majestic.
I am thinking that this may need to be a 2 part record of our trip as its getting very very late and Mr computer and I have had a few hitches and glitches,time to packup for the evening methinks.