Sunday, 1 August 2021

July Update

A quick update for July before moving into August..... The month of July always brings our mum's birthday and time for another family celebration in Sydney but unfortunately due to lockdown that was not to be so a "virtual" birthday cake was sent and a shared cup of tea.....

.....Mum received her presents by post including this one I finished in time ........
Apart from this little bit of creativity have, as always, been reading......This was a book bought at Storyfest this year .... a biography about Elizabeth von Arnim - an early twentieth century author...was interesting.... 
"Happy" mail arrived during the past week....time to knit myself something - let's see how long it takes as the last garment took 3 Winters to finish! 
And while we can't really travel too far Megan & James in England went mountain bike riding in Wales - Megan's new found sport and Hayley in Queensland spent a few days camping with friends in Girraween National Park - well known for it's boulders! 
So that's about if for July......maybe August will bring a little more creativity, some more reading and warmer weather which for me brings more motivation! 







 

Sunday, 4 July 2021

Sunny Sunday

Warm sunny Sunday here today - even thought it's still Winter.... only 1 more month to go but unfortunately that doesn't necessarily mean instant warmer temperatures but today was a day to sit in the sun and do some stitching with my constant companion (of course). Another block from "Gossip in the Garden" started a few weeks ago is finally finished ....... I think this project is going to take some time! 

A much smaller project - is also on the go..... a gift for a birthday coming up.....
Also a bit of reading and this book was finished today..... I went to listen to the author at our local library the week after Storyfest..... as always it's great to hear these authors speak about their work and in this case his journey from journalist to author. I did enjoy the book - very descriptively written - but found there were probably too many plots (though very clever) towards the end...... 
Earlier in the week .... Megan, in England, celebrated her birthday .... as always I sent her a "virtual" birthday wish......one day - hopefully - we will be able to celebrate together! 
And once again that brings me up to date..... so much quicker to catch up sooner rather than later! Off to make a cup of tea and peruse the bookcase for another book to start! 





Monday, 21 June 2021

Storyfest 2021

 This last weekend I headed up the highway to Ulladulla to take part in this year's Storyfest.... best described as "a celebration of storytelling in all it's forms"......my love of reading equates to my love of stitching so I was in my element surrounded by like-minded readers, authors and a great pop-up book shop (courtesy of the Harbour Bookshop in Ulladulla). 

I booked into 4 "talks" over the weekend.... the first being by Rosalie Ham......
- author of "The Dressmaker" and it's sequel "the Dressmaker's Secret" ......she also talked about how the film came about -  making mention that her and members of her family were "extras" in the film!..... Later in the afternoon I attended a session called "Writers on Writing" - a panel of 3 writers discussed such topics as where their ideas came from, what inspired them to write their current book - some of the views of each were quite varied! Saturday finished off listening to Craig Silvey, also wrote the book "Jasper Jones", but he was there to talk of his recent novel "Honeybee" - how he was inspired to write the story and create the 2 main characters in the book.
Sunday morning I made the spontaneous decision to attend a talk called "Sisters in Crime" - a session with 3 female writers of crime discussing their recent books... 
.... I found this interesting as I do read crime / thriller novels but most have been written by a male....but here were books written from a female perspective and in all 3 the main characters and storyline involved women.... 
Did I mentioned there was a pop-up bookshop!! A few books made their way home..... 
Over the last few weeks some stitching has been done - but not a lot and definitely not enough to "talk" about..... have been busy reading though with Jasper Jones being a must read before I headed to Storyfest......
A few weeks ago (22nd May) on a beautiful sunny Autumn day my sister Vivien was finally able to have a memorial for her husband Graham.... with covid restrictions eased family and friends came together at the Exeter Village Hall for the afternoon with some staying on into the evening sitting around firepits at her home enjoying a glass (or 2) of wine, pizza and toasted marshmallows ...... 
Hayley (in the middle) was able to come down from Queensland  - it was lovely for the family to be able to catch up with her as well! 

Am off to another writer's talk at our local library in a few days time so am busy trying to finish that author's book - feel I'd rather be at home reading than at work - but more on that next time and hopefully with some stitching to show! 

Happy Stitching
Asta
                                                        








Monday, 17 May 2021

More Catching Up

 Well, Autumn - my favourite season - is nearly over ......

We have had quite a cold snap over the last few days but not a lot of wind so this beautiful tree which I pass every day on my way to work is still holding onto its colourful Autumn coat.....


But back to updates from the last few weeks.....before it becomes months of updating..... In late March our embroidery group enjoyed a scrumptious high tea at the Bodalla Bakery....
And as we still had "warmish" weather during early April I took a wander down to my local beach for a quick dip - water wasn't quite as warm as the neighbour I passed on the way said it was - you could say it was refreshing.....
Enjoying lunch at our local Botanical Gardens late in April with a lovely friend, Lorraine, whom I met through embroidery - she was moving to Sydney.....

The first weekend in May and I was off to Sydney - the family gathered together again for another birthday celebration, this time for my sister, Vivien.....
...and while in Sydney my sisters and I actually went to a show!!! Yes, that in itself was a celebration as it has been quite a while...... show was great and enjoyed by all!!

Over the last few - or more - weeks I have of course been reading........"The Land Before Avocado" had me really laughing out load as I could relate to quite a few of the topics! 
Also I have my blog printed up into a journal - usually every 2 years - this time it covered from 2018 - 2020 - it was so interesting reading back over it as it included my trip to England in 2018 and of course Megan's wedding here in early 2020.....I always have the same front cover and for the back I usually choose a craft project - over the last 3 years I've made so many chickens I thought it would be appropriate they take "centre stage" on the back!! 
Some stitching to show this time..... a couple of gifted lavender bags and a return to a project that I have had for a while but this time I really must get it happening as there are so many new projects now lining up behind it - not to mention a number of UFOs!! 
This crochet blanket - still being finished off  - hopefully will be finished this Winter though I seem to remember saying that last Winter and the Winter before that!! Not quite sure whom this is being made for though??  
And to finish off..... Mother's Day has come and gone but every year that Megan has been overseas she sends me a greeting on Mothers Day..... this year it was from Ashdown Forest (not far from her home)......we went there when I was in England and loved the walk as part of it is the "real" place where Christopher Robin, Winnie the Pooh and friends "grew up" AA Milne lived in a nearby village and the forest has some of the sites of Pooh's adventures...... Hayley's Mother's Day phone call came from North Queensland where she happened to be holidaying! 
And that about sums up the last few weeks - well, since my last update. I really must do this more often as it takes some time to find my pictures and think back to what I have actually done..... but on that note I'll finish off  - till next time!

Happy Stitching
Asta 







Wednesday, 31 March 2021

How Time Flies!

 Oh my! Has it really been that long since my last post!! Well, time to do a bit of a catch up with a few photos thrown in...... 

Going back to end January the family gathered together in Sydney again for an early celebration of my sister Linda's birthday....

Into February and - surprise, surprise - I actually had some creativity happening..... a friend was gifted a "chicken" and some time ago (won't say how long ago but I've never known of chickens to take so long to incubate!!)  she asked for a couple more.... finally they got made...and a needle case for Linda - who is quite an avid embroiderer! 
And, of course, a bit of reading - really enjoy books by Kate Morton......
While we were enjoying some Summery weather here over in England Megan & James finally had snow towards the end of February..... she said it was just like walking through Narnia from The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.....
Now for some holiday photos ...... No overseas holidays yet so early March my other sister & I spent a week at Linda's place on the mid-north coast....We had many afternoon / morning teas out.....here we are at Miss Nellies in Kendall - who was to know that just a couple of weeks later it was inundated by the severe flooding experienced in that area. 
The local garden centre also (very conveniently) has a great cafe - a couple of visits here....
One morning we managed to arise before sunrise and headed up to a vantage point to watch the sunrise.... with a thermos packed we enjoyed a cup of hot tea as it was rather cool at that time of the morning!
Another day and we enjoyed catching up with a dear "old" friend over lunch at the Gladstone Pub - she was our neighbour in Sydney where we all grew up together and now lives about an hour north of Linda.....lots of stories to share that day! 
With so much eating out a little exercise was to be added to the itinerary..... believe me this did not happen often! 
And.... we did get to the beach but not for long as bearing down on us was a big storm - but we did get our feet wet!
Now.... what holiday would be complete without finding a patchwork shop!! Tucked away through the gate and down an overgrown path - "I Love Country" - full of a great range of embroidery threads, a small but very interesting range of fabrics and any other notions required for stitching!! Was a purchase made you ask? Well, of course! Unfortunately, I did see on their face book page that they were closed due to water damage from the recent flooding. 
And..... my sister has a cat called Milly who shared my bed, my lap - even sleeping in my open suitcase so while on holiday I was not deprived of feline company while Dora was back at home enjoying her "holiday" at the pet motel! 
Holiday over and it was back home and back to work...... a few days off again with the Easter holiday just around the corner...... some quiet time, some catching up with friends and some stitching - have a few things on the go at the moment  - perhaps too many so will be taking a while to get something actually finished I think..... will pop back sooner next time!

Happy Stitching
Asta