Thursday, December 12, 2013

Howdy, All !!

It's been a long, long, long time since I was last here.  I think about you all, and about getting back to blogging often, but time has kept me away ... who knows, maybe 2014 is my year to get back into it.

Hope you have all been well.

As you must have guessed, I have been very busy.

I am still a "Lollipop Lady" with the local council, supervising school crossings on a casual / relieving basis.

I have purchased a small home based business during this year.  I am the proud owner of a business called Handmade Tutu's ... you can find my Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/handmadetutus, or my Website at www.handmadetutus.com ... both of these pages will show you many of the wonderful tutu's I create, and also allow you to order them, if you so wish !!

I have been having a lot of fun with the Tutu business, they are very easy to make, and business has been surprisingly very, very full-on !!  It is basically word of mouth, or search engine, that finds me, and I am amazed at the huge number of orders I have been receiving.

As well as this, I continue with my quilting, although not quite as often as I would like !!

I have recently enrolled in an on-line course, a Diploma of Accounting ... this should take me up to 3 years to complete, however I would like to finish it much quicker.  As I write, I have barely had time to do any, although now that things are slowing down, and Summer Holidays are almost upon us, I hope to get into it !!

My family are all well, working hard, healthy, loving, busy !!

I must sign off now, but I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a Very Merry Christmas, and a Safe and Happy New Year.

All the best, from my family to yours ...



Take care,

Monday, December 24, 2012


Just a quick post from my family to yours,
to wish you a
Very Merry Christmas
and a
Safe and Happy Hew Year.
 
If you are driving these holidays, please drive safely.
 
If you are staying at home, please play safely !!
 
But most of all, enjoy this time with your loved ones,
it is very precious.


Take care,

Saturday, June 16, 2012

More Quilting

Hi Everyone,

It's been a couple of weeks again since I last posted ... I've been busy, I guess, but not so much, really, I spose (that doesn't even make sense !!!).

I have been busy with my quilting and crocheting, along with the usual housework, laundry, shopping, socialising.

I have been working on a Snake's Trail Quilt, which we are being taught in a workshop / class that I attend.  Here is a photo of how it is looking so far ... I just finished sewing on the borders, so now all I have to do is put on the batting, backing and quilt it ... a lengthy process, but it will be well worth it in the end.

I have also gotten back into a Kaleidescope Quilt that I began working on last year (incidentally, this quilt was taught in a class by the same guest teacher as the Snake's Trail Quilt).  So far I have completed 12 blocks ... I want to make 16.  I have another 2 cut out, am sewing them together now, then need to cut out another two.  Here is a photo of the blocks I have completed so far, laid out on the fabric I will be using for the sashing.  It should look amazing when it's finished.  I hope to use it on my own bed !!


The weather has been a bit ordinary during the past few weeks, good weather for inside activities, but not much else.  Very cold standing at my school crossings ... I've had a few soggy wet days, not pleasant at all !!  I managed to pick up a nasty cold, which fortunately hasn't lasted very long.

I went out to dinner the other night with some girls I went to school with 30 years ago.  It was lovely catching up, to see how much people have (or haven't) changed.  The food was a bit ordinary, won't go there again.  But we hope to repeat our catch up on a regular basis, I think.

Baron and I also went out to dinner with some other friends the following night.  This was a lovely evening, the venue was great, the food was lovely, the company was such fun.

Baron, Elisabeth and I went for a drive last Monday (it was a public holiday here), and ended up in Walhalla.  They were celebrating the Queen's Jubilee, and the town was chockers with people ... it was a shame, as we couldn't explore properly.  Must go back again another time, as it is a very interesting town.


I went and had a CT Scan on my back on Thursday.  I have an appointment with my Doctor on Monday, so hopefully we can come up with a plan to ease the sciatica pain I have been having at night / in the mornings.  It is improving, but it would be nice if it were gone (wishful thinking, I reckon, but we'll see !!) ... it would be nice to get a decent night's sleep again.

Anyway, not much else to write about at the moment, so I might leave it there.

Enjoy your weekend, everyone, and stay safe.

Take care,

Monday, June 04, 2012

Crafting ... Love it !!!

Howdy, dear Blog Friends !!

Just thought I'd talk about crafts with you !! 

Now, you all must know that I love to sew, am obsessed with patchwork and quilting.  Up until recently, I also did alot of scrapbooking (which seems to have taken a bit of a backburner, with the quilting taking over ... but I will get back into it, I am always thinking of special pages to create !!).  And for the past couple of months, I have also become somewhat obsessed with crocheting !!  In the past, I have also done cross stitch (in fact, I still have a couple of projects on the go), folk art / decorative painting (still have all my paints, plan on doing some aboriginal dot style painting sometime soon !!), along with various other things.

I was taught to knit (although I never really mastered knitting !!) and crochet, initially, by my grandmother.  Also, my initial foray into sewing was thanks to my grandmother, whose wonderful old sewing machine I still have (I originally did a course through Knitwit ... all stretch sewing ... it was great fun, and I used to make heaps of clothing for both myself, and my daughter when she was little).  I know back in the "good old days", many of these crafts were a means to an end ... you had to sew, or you had no clothes !!  Likewise with knitting and crochet !!  These days, I guess, for most of us, these are just hobbies / crafts that we do because we enjoy them, because we want to do them, just because !!

Many of the patterns around these days are very hip and modern, although I guess they all stem back to the original stuff they did "back in the day".  I imagine most of the stitches used in knitting and crochet were invented long, long ago.  I love to look around for older patterns, particularly the hippy style ... not because I want to wear them myself (although I do plan on making a poncho !!), but just because they are fun, and have a history.

Watching old TV programs (like Little House on the Prairie, and Dr Quinn Medicine Woman, for example), and old movies, you often see woman sitting around in groups, doing their sewing together, in a quilting circle, or whatever.  Well, guess what, we still do stuff like that !!  We get together in groups, workshops, classes ... and sit and sew (or crochet, or knit, or scrapbook, or whatever !) together ... hey, things haven't changed so much, really, have they !!!

What I was wondering was, do you think all these crafts, which seem to be making a resurgence, have taken on a new face, have changed, or are they basically just the same as when our grandparents, and their parents and grandparents, learnt and taught them ? Do you think things need to change, to modernise more, to encourage the younger generation to partake in these crafts, so they don't die out ??  I'd love to hear what you think.

I don't intend to ever be "craft-less".  As we get older, we need to keep our minds active (and our bodies, too, of course) ... doing a form of craft helps with this !!  It's a way of having "me time" too. There's not much better on a rainy day, than to be sitting in front of my sewing machine, which is in front of a window, with the heater on, knowing I'm scrumptiously warm and happy, whilst it's yucky outside.

Anyway, enough prattle from me for now ... back to my sewing machine !!!

Take care,

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Another Day, Another (hundred) Dollars !!

Howdy Friends,

It's only been a week since my last post, but here I am again ... whoo-hoo !!!

It's been a fairly uneventful week, not a whole heap to write about, but I'll give it a go, anyway !!

I've had a few crossings to supervise this week, and the weather was disgusting for a couple of them ... I got saturated, not happy ... but oh well, life goes on !!

I caught up with my dear friend, Melinda, for lunch on Tuesday ... we chatted, ate, and had a lovely time.  We need to do that more often.

I had my doctor's appointment on Wednesday, a follow up for my sciatica problem.  He put me on stronger anti-inflammatories, gave me a referral for a CT scan, and told me to see how it goes before having the scan.  Well, I think it is improving somewhat, the pain isn't as bad, and doesn't last as long ... so maybe it's on the improve.  Will give it a few more days before deciding whether to get the CT scan or not !!

I enjoyed another fun crochet class on Thursday morning, and am working on a fancy square, a bit more complex than the granny squares we had been working on (which are becoming a seat pad/cushion ... see photo below !!).


I have been continuing to work on my scarf that I mentioned last post, but I have now also started a pair of fingerless gloves (really need them whilst working at the crossings ... gosh it is cold some mornings !!).  I have so far finished one glove.  This photo was taken in bad light with my iphone, but I think it shows what the glove is basically supposed to look like.  The bit over the hand is made of "puff stitches", but the photo doesn't really show this !!


I haven't done a lot of sewing / quilting this week ... seem to be lacking in motivation ... my plan for the upcoming week is to work hard on the latest quilt, which involves a lot of curves.  Photos forthcoming, when I have something to share !!

On Saturday night we went to the Teutonia German Club with my parents and some friends.  It was the Schuetzenfest (shooting festival) Dance, and the guys wanted to do some shooting in the shooting hall they have onsite.  There were some games, and competitions happening, and Baron and I did well, coming home with 5 critters (he won 3 shooting, and I won 2 in a ball roll game), and $100 (which I won with a "pick a number" competition) !!  Not a bad haul for a few hours !!!


Today is Baron's birthday ... we decided to go for a drive, the weather was holding out, it wasn't raining much today ... also, Elisabeth actually had the day off work, and needs to get more hours up before getting her drivers licence.  We drove over the Dandenongs, out through Mt Evelyn, and on to Warburton.  We stopped at a lovely Bakehouse & Tearooms for lunch, then continued driving out through Cockatoo & Emerald back to home.  It was a pleasant few hours, it is such beautiful countryside.  Guess who forgot to take photos, though !!!

Hmmm, can't think of anything else at this stage.  Doesn't really make for very interesting reading, I am sorry to say ... but, my life is not always very interesting, or exciting.

I hope you all have a fantastic week.  Will write again real soon.

Take care,

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Another Update

Hi There,

Well, once again I have been slack, and it's been two whole months since my last post ... but it has been a busy two months (although that is no excuse !!).

So, what have I been up to ???

I have been very busy in my role as Casual / Relieving School Crossing Supervisor, being rostered on for crossings most mornings and afternoons ... this usually amounts to a total of an hour and a half per day (45 minutes am and 45 minutes pm), with about 6 hours break between ... plenty of time to do other things.

I had to buy myself a new laptop, as the old one died a painful death ... I love the new one, though, and am very happy with it !!


It is an Asus A53S Series, with Intel Core i5, running Windows 7, and , and is white (although it doesn't look real flash in this photo ... bad light !!).  It's pretty cool !!!

I have been happily attending my classes ... Beginners Crochet, Patchwork & Creative Writing ... as well as attending fortnightly Patchwork workshops.

The Crochet classes are fun, they are run by a gorgeous older lady who used to have a crochet business, designing and producing garments and items for the rich and famous, as well as everyday people.  She is amazing, and very talented.  Fortunately, I am picking up the skills she is teaching quite quickly ... and am enjoying it immensely.  In fact, I have gotten quite obsessed with crocheting.  I have made a few hats / beanies, a pair of fingerless gloves, continue to work on a blanket I have been making for around 20 years, on and off, and am currently working on a scarf.  I have also completed granny squares, which we are learning in class, and sampler squares, etc.  I am constantly on the lookout for interesting patterns, and have found a couple I really like.  I want to make a beautiful shawl I have the pattern for, and also a poncho (back to the 70s, yayyy !!!)

Three of the beanies I have made ... there is also a black one, no flowers, with a fold over edge

Elisabeth modeling her beanie and fingerless gloves

A Rasta Slouchy beanie

Bambi helping me crochet my blanket

Patchwork classes have been fun, I have been attending this class for about two and a half years now.  We are currently working on a quilt as you go project ... unfortunately I haven't got any photos at this stage !!  I think mine will be a table topper, rather than a quilt. 

The fortnightly workshop is also great fun, and we have been working on a couple of projects ... last term was Tube Quilting ... I still need to put a border on my quilt top, then finish it all ... it looks good so far !!

I am putting a black border on this, and the backing is a black and colored floral fabric

We are now working on a project using curves, called Snakes Trails ... quite challenging, quite time consuming, quite fiddly, but very effective ... no photos at this stage, though.  It should look awesome when it is done !!

In mid April, we went camping for a few days ... Elisabeth had the week off, prior to her birthday, and this is what she wanted to do.  We headed to Lake Eildon, The Pines, and camped at Picnic Point.  We took along one of her friends.  It was a great few days.  We managed to borrow a canoe, and the girls had a ball.  We were fortunate with the weather, it was the last hurrah of Summer ... the weather was gorgeous (although chilly at night !!).


Baron Relaxing !!

Our campsite on the lake

The girls slept in the tent

Almost 18 and still playing with mud !!


Elisabeth turned 18 on the 20th April ... we had a party here at home, which turned out pretty good.  Fortunately, she had invited a nice bunch of friends, there was no trouble, and everyone (including us parents / family / grown ups !!) had a great night.  Some of the kids went out afterward, and continued partying at a club. 

Me, my dad, Elisabeth, my mum, Baron ... Elisabeth's 18th Birthday Party


Mothers Day was last week ... we went out to lunch with my parents at The Ringwood Club.  It was a lovely afternoon.  I got some nice pressies from my family.

I had a doctor's appointment last week, as I have been suffering from back problems (most likely stemming from my fall on Kangaroo Island last year).  Seems I have Sciatica, and am on anti-inflammatories at the moment, which are helping somewhat, although not fully.  I have another appointment next week, where we will re-assess the problem, and possibly look further.  It is a very painful thing, although from my point of view, I am fortunate that it is only at night (at this stage), and my days are relatively pain free. Oh well, I guess if I have to live with it, I just have to ...  There are plenty of people out there worse off than me !!

We went out to dinner with my parents on Wednesday night, as it was my dad's birthday.  We ate at the Wantirna Hill Club ... another lovely meal, and lovely evening.  We came back here afterward for coffee, and watched the Celebrity Apprentice finale.

Yesterday I went to Castlemaine, to catch up with some long time Blog Friends ... Susan and Renata, and some other lovely ladies.  It was a great day, I can't say I did a lot of crafting (which was what the day was all about), but I got to chat lots, and pick Susan's brain with some crochet and quilting guidance.  Susan suggested I join Ravelry, which is an online community for Crocheters and Knitters ... it seems like a great place to play ... although another big time eater-upperer (like Facebook !!).  Oh well, I love stuff like this !!!

Hmmm, I think that's all for the moment ... if I think of anything else I will get back on here asap.

Enjoy life, be good to your loved ones and take care.

Till next time ...

Saturday, March 17, 2012

A Sandy Holiday With Friends

On Friday the 9th of March, at around 5am (we had left home at 4am) seven four wheel drive vehicles (containing 7 couples and one child) met between Werribee and Geelong for the long drive to Robe in South Australia, where we planned on spending the entire weekend sand & beach driving, before heading home again on Monday. We had great expectations for the weekend, as we had briefly sampled the delights of Robe and sand driving last year, on our way home from another trip to South Australia with our wonderful friends, Jack and Melinda.




We travelled for a total of around 8 hours, including wee and food stops, before arriving at the lovely caravan park in Robe, which we would call home for the weekend, just after lunch (Melbourne time).

We set ourselves up in our accommodation (we chose to take our camper trailer, as did Dave & Janine, and all the others shared 2 large cabins.)

Just for reference, the couples were ... Baron & Connie (that's us !), Jack & Melinda, Dave & Janine, Keith & Lyndel, Mark & Lizzie & Tory, Michael & Sue, and Terry & Di.

We went for a wander through town, stopping at the Information Centre, the Bakery for bread, and the girls visiting various other shops (including a wonderful patchwork shop ... Nothing caught my eye, so I actually came out empty handed !). I think the boys visited the pub, among other places !!!








After lunch, some of us decided to go for a quick drive out onto the sand ... Sort of a practice run, I suppose !!!

Neko was keen ...




We drove a short way out of town, into the Little Dip Conservation Park, and decided to visit a part of the beach that we had visited last year. Turns out that the beaches and dunes are constantly changing, and this spot, which wasn't too bad last year, had actually become quite difficult for some of the cars !!




Dave and Janine managed to get themselves quite bogged !! This was a lesson for us all, and from then on, we all let down our tyres quite a lot, so that this would not occur too often !!








The beaches are beautiful and rugged around this area ... Absolutely stunning.




After this excitement, we drove for a short while, then returned to camp, where we were having a group cook up for dinner, with everyone having brought along something to share !! First though, drinks and nibbles !!




It was a reasonably early night for all ... It had been a very long day !!

The next morning, we awoke bright and early, as is our norm when camping. It had been a mild night, thank goodness. There was a gorgeous sunrise over the salt lake beside the caravan park. Photo time !!!




We left camp around 9am, and headed down to Beachport, so we could spend the day driving the beaches and dunes back to Robe. By road, this is only a distance of 45km ... But by beach and dune, this was quite a bit more !!
It's quite surprising, some parts of the beach are quiet and peaceful, but others are like being in the middle of the city ... Cars everywhere ... It was quite entertaining !!




We all had orange flags on long poles on our cars, to make it easier to see us when on the dunes.
















The weather was amazing, the sights were amazing ... Well, the whole day was amazing !!

We drove lots, only a couple of boggings occurred, nothing serious !!!

One beach near Nora Creina is a nudist beach ... Some of us knew this, but we were all still quite surprised when, as we were driving along the beach, minding our own business, a couple of quite elderly gentlemen were walking very close to the path we were all taking ... they were very naked (just wearing hats on their heads, and presumably lots of sunscreen!), and didn't seem to mind stopping for chats with the cars coming by !! Lizzie promptly covered Tory's young eyes, so she wouldn't be scarred for life at the sight of these wrinkly naked men !!! Very amusing !!!

We found some beautiful spots, and of course, made many stops for photos.








We found a great big open sand dune area ... Time for a play !!




(No, those donut tracks in the sand weren't from our car ... Not a good thing to do with low tyre pressures, as it is very easy to peel the tyre from the rim !)




On with the drive ...




















We stopped for lunch at a lovely dune area ... I had pre-heated hot dogs in my Thermal Pot before leaking camp this morning, others brought along the bread and rolls. I love my thermal cooker, it is so very handy !!!




After lunch, more driving !!

We found some amazing dunes, which of course, the guys had to try and climb. Michael made it the highest, getting his front wheels onto the lip of the hill. Our old Nissan didn't do too badly, either !












More driving ... We were having an awesome day !! This is what we came for, and this is exactly what we were doing ... Life is amazing, this is such a gorgeous part of the world !!












This bit of beach was quite challenging for a couple of the cars .. Boggings ensued, with the men going for a jog back to those bogged to help get them moving again !! Whilst waiting on the beach, the traffic arrived ... There must have been about 30 cars waiting, once our cars were through (it is important to let one car go at a time, because it is very easy to lose control of the steering in thick sand, and sometimes the car seems to have a mind of its own !)

We found a very dead stingray on the beach ... Poor thing, looked like it had been tortured :(




Once off this beach, we did a bit more driving, before heading back to the main road, and camp ... It was getting late !!
















We returned to camp, intending to go to the pub, or have pizza, or something ... We were all so tired, we just threw together whatever, and had another reasonably early night.

Next morning, we went and did a bit of exploring around Robe.

We got a group photo at the Old Gaol Ruins ...




Then headed to the Obelisk, and beautiful cliff formations.
















Neko wanted to drive, but the Nissan was a bit big for him ...




We thought this was a better option ...




We got back into the cars, with the intention of heading to Kingston for some more exploring ... Some of the group had had enough of the sand at this stage, although we hadn't !! As it turned out, 4 of the cars headed to Kingston, whilst 3 of us headed back toward Robe to enter the beach at Long Beach for some more sand driving ... After all, that's why we drove all that way !!

The beach was beautiful, but the day was a bit windy. We found a lovely spot for lunch, and later on another for drinks !!

It was interesting to see speed limit signs on a beach !!








As usual, I love signs, and found this one interesting ... Although it didn't stop the guys from parking on the cliff edge anyway !!
































That evening, we headed back out to the Obelisk for some sunset photos ... I took far too many, but that's the magic of digital cameras !!












We headed into town for dinner, ending up in a yummy pizza restaurant. Then back to camp, to rest, ready for the big drive home on Monday.

It was a fantastic weekend, thank you to everyone who shared it with us. I would quite happily go back to Robe anytime, and do it all over again ... There is something so special about the coastline near Robe ... In fact, this whole country is amazing, and we are very lucky to have the ability and machinery to enjoy it all !!

Thanks for reading, hope I haven't rambled on for too long.

Ta ta for now ...

Connie xxx

Location:Robe, South Australia