Monday, 26 October 2020

Weekends Away

 Has it really been that long since I was last here!! Where does the time go?? And more to the point what have I been doing? I have completed a few rows of knitting, did trace a pattern on my new light box but that was as far as I got, have fabric ready to cut out for a quilt, in the process of de-cluttering my sewing room - still ongoing - I came across a few "works in progress", discovered a X-stitch pattern I'd like to start...... but have no photos to share of any creativity - this time! 
But..... I did have a couple of weekends away - very rare in these days of not going too far. On the October long weekend I travelled up to Bundanoon (Southern Highlands) to visit my sister  as our other sister from the North Coast was there as well so gave us all a chance to spend some time together.... Bundanoon had a "Scarecrow Festival" so we took a drive around checking some of them out...

Linda taking a rest in the lovely garden behind the Bundanoon Memorial Hall.......
Enjoying lunch in Vivien's garden (took a while to get this "selfie" just right - arms aren't always long enough!
About a week ago decided to take a few days off work ..... just have a mini holiday at home but did pop up to Bundanoon again and from there Vivien and I drove to Sydney for the day to celebrate Dad's 98th birthday with the rest of the family.... 
Apart from patchwork shops my other favourite is Bunnings and after a visit during my mini holiday and leaving with a trolley full of plants most of my days off at home were then spent in the garden - another "work in progress" ! The end result was lots of colour and was rewarded by seeing happy bees and butterflies! My azaleas, which I do nothing with, were so thick with flowers this year you couldn't even see the green leaves!   
Well, that's about it for now...... next time I should have some photos of what I have been stitching while de-cluttering of my sewing room continues - I'm sure I could set up my own haberdashery shop - so much "stuff"!!! And on that note I'll share the following which I came across - somewhere! 
Happy Stitching
Asta











Monday, 7 September 2020

Spring has sprung

 Well, here we are into the  first month of Spring.... and so far the weather hasn't disappointed with some lovely warmish days! 

I do need to catch up though on August "happenings" ....... very early in the month a couple of us - me included - celebrated our birthdays at our usual embroidery gathering......

Renate our hostess, me & Shirley

I have been busy shopping (online)....decided it was time to invest in one of these light boxes - arms were getting too tired tracing patterns at the window!

.......and this lovely book was bought as a birthday gift from a dear friend who left it up to me to buy something "that made me happy".......
Of course I have been reading......3 books in 3 weeks..... reading is a great escapism from these unusual times we find ourselves in......enjoyed all these books - Michael Robotham being one of my favourite crime writers after hearing him speak at a book festival.....and "Where the Crawdads Sing" didn't disappoint either.


There have been a few weekend outings for afternoon tea with friends to our Botanical Gardens....they were severely damaged in the fires earlier this year but by some miracle the cafe, shop and conference centre escaped the fires with little damage....they have only recently re-opened with a new bridge leading the way..... 

Between reading books, weekend outings (and work) I did actually make something - a pincushion - a requested birthday present for Hayley who has also, like Megan in England, taken to a bit of sewing during these times of being "house bound"..... an Anni Downs pattern.....
And couldn't miss out on sending her a "virtual" birthday cake for her birthday in early September......
So.... here we are into September..... warmer weather hopefully bringing motivation (maybe some more creativity).......might head off and look for a pattern to use my light box for?

Happy Stitching
Asta








Sunday, 2 August 2020

The Last Month.....

Here we are into August already....life as we know it has still not changed and so I go between work and home.... we did have a scare of the virus here a couple of weeks ago but thankfully has now passed and this week  am looking forward to my small embroidery group getting together again .........but, to catch up since last posting.....
There have been a couple of birthdays over the last few weeks....firstly Megan's in England and as always I sent her a "virtual" birthday cake.....
.....then a few weeks later is was my mum's 91st birthday.... plans to head to Sydney were cancelled so thought it a nice idea to also send her a "virtual" birthday cake together with a cup of tea and flowers.......
 A couple more books have been read..... thoroughly enjoyed "Becoming Michelle Obama"  they were an amazing couple and very interesting reading about living in the White House! This was followed by an all time classic.... "The Hound of the Baskervilles" - bought in England in 2018 (!) 
And..... (drumroll happening here)..... I finally finished Hayley's quilt - started some time ago (!)  and has been waiting for the binding to be done since last year....

Unfortunately the true colours don't really show up as there was no white - it was all blacks, greys and beiges with a touch of "wine". I posted it to Queensland and was very pleased knowing it had arrived when she sent me a lovely thank you message! 
Also out of the basket with further progress being made is my crochet blanket started 3 Winters ago.... perhaps this year I'll get it finished?? 
While Megan was in "lock down" in England she took up embroidery and has done some beautiful work.....  here is my Mothers' Day present she sent....I think I have forgotten to "show it off" in any previous post..... 
And will finish off with photo of a double rainbow I came across on my way home from work a few weeks ago....... 
Off to find another stitching project and book to read!! 

Happy Stitching
Asta


Tuesday, 23 June 2020

Dear Graham.....

Sadly, Graham passed away peacefully on 15th June .... he was a devoted and much loved husband to my dear sisterVivien, a dearly loved member of our family...son-in-law, brother-in-law and uncle...... and a great friend to many.....

Graham was privately cremated today and Vivien had asked us all to remember Graham at that time in our own way..... quite often when Graham and Vivien came to visit here on the South Coast he always told me that in his early 20s he had often camped with friends at Barlings Beach so it was there that I went today to reflect and remember this wonderful person who added so much to my sister's life and our family's. 
Rest in Peace, dear Graham

Asta 



Sunday, 14 June 2020

Further Catching Up!

Here I am back again..... and what a lot has happened since our family wedding! ...
Towards the end of February my sisters Linda and Vivien and brother-in-law Graham headed to Sydney for a great concert by a group called.... 
Little did we know that this would be the last of our get togethers for some time...... Covid 19 had reached Australia and we were in lockdown.... looking back it does seem a while ago now and as of writing this we are finally starting to ease our restrictions! How lucky were Megan & James to make their wedding after the fires and then get back to England before lockdown! 
With all in lockdown my Rock & Roll classes were put on hold and getting together with the lovely ladies in my embroidery group also was no longer an outing to look forward to....though in the last week we have got together again - after nearly 3 months! Rock & Roll has still to start..... I continued to work as we were still open though many shops and businesses had to close..... 
Easter arrived and was spent at home.....this was soon followed by ANZAC Day
I remembered this special day joining with neighbours on our nature strips in the early hours of the morning. 
Then it was Mothers' Day and like many others it was spent at home instead of heading to Sydney to celebrate with mum & dad. Once again I received my Mothers' Day message from Megan (together with James this year) ....from out on one of their many bike rides..
During their lockdown in England Megan has also taken up embroidery.....very impressed with her work especially as she has not done this before....she ordered kits and I have also sent her "care packages" with some of my surplus (!!) embroidery supplies... they were rather large parcels! .....though I don't seem to have made a dent! 
And Hayley in Queensland has been painting a "mural" on her bedroom wall.... still waiting for a photo of the finished masterpiece! 
During the past few months I have not really been very creative...... have done a lot of mulling over projects to start with nothing really happening.... did take up the knitting needles though - seemed like the the thing to do when I really couldn't be bothered gathering quilting / embroidery material together....maybe a sign of the general "flat" feeling of the times?? I knitted a "Miss Marple scarf", a few face washers (one in constant use and is doing quite well even after going through the washing machine a number of times!!) and a dishcloth - still to be tried out - knitted in a cotton from USA and looks and feels like the genuine old fashioned dish cloths! 
I have read a few books.....
Have been out walking.....more than I usually would!
Fingers have also done some walking.....online!! A new pattern from Anni Downs and some Tilda fabric....there has been a bit more shopping done but photos have not been taken yet! 
And.... while not at work and isolating on weekends have, of course, enjoyed Dora's company......
That about brings me up to date....... but I do finish off this post on a sad note..... my dear brother-in-law, Graham, is now in Palliative Care after battling an illness over the past 3 1/2 years. Thankfully, due to our restrictions being eased, I was able to go and see him last weekend..... these next few days....weeks...will be a sad time for our "small" family.... 

Till next time....
Asta