Monday, December 27, 2010

Arrvied in Portland on Sunday night, just after they received some fresh snow. Went on a tour of the lighthouses in Portland - it was VERY cold and windy.

Lots of wandering around the Old Port area - wonderful craft shops. Have also been eating rather well - can you imagine having lobster sandwiches for lunch!!! Then topped it off with a half a lobster for dinner as well. Figure I wouldn't normally eat it at home, so best make the best of it here where it is so cheap! Don't you just love the "hat hair"!!!

My son is taking me to Mount Washington Resort as my xmas present - how spoilt am I?! Spent a wonderful Christmas Eve being pampered in the Spa while Peter went skiing. What an amazing resort this is - so picturesque. And yes, it is very cold - but beautiful. Looks just like a postcard doesn't it?!

Back in Portland tonight and there is a snow storm warning for tonight. The cars are not to park on the side of the road, so that they will be able to clear the roads of snow. Must admit, it is pretty blowy out there at the moment, I will be interested to see what it looks like tomorrow.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Tuesday, 21 December - after two wonderful days in Boston, it was off to New York with my son Peter. Have had a wonderful time. Seen lots of sights, Empire State Building, Central Park, Statue of Liberty and even ventured into Tiffany's.

Then on to the Rockerfeller Center. Below is the Swarovski star and below that the most famous christmas tree in the world (so I overheard someone say).

Must admit, it was pretty impressive. Can't get over the number of people around - and cars. I thought Sydney was busy - it's nothing on New York traffic!!!

Have been told that it's snowing in Portland and that's where I'm off to next. White Christmas after all - hurray!!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Friday - 17 December

Well, despite the cosy bed, I still was awake relatively early – 7.30 am. Have fluffed around in the hotel room until 10 and am just about to head out on my own – where to first I wonder???

Headed up to the Information Centre to find out where I should go – first stop though was the shopping centre – or should I say – Macys. In fact, that took up most of the morning – well, all of it actually.
Bought myself three pair of jeans ($80 for all – they were on sale), some gloves (to keep my hands from freezing) and some makeup (which I thought was cheaper, but still saved nearly $30).

Went into a “Pharmacy” which was more like going into an IGA – they even had those check out yourself registers, like Woolies.

Got sick of shopping (I just kept spending money – and wondering how I was going to carry it all), so headed back to the hotel to offload. By 2 pm I was trying to get on the “hop on hop off” tram ride, but the tourist guy at the hotel suggested I would be better off waiting till tomorrow when I have more time. So I was walking again – up to Boston Common and the Boston Gardens.
The lake in the gardens is all frozen over – except for a little circle of water, with 2 ducks in it (see photo below). The gardens look lovely although a little bare – they would be magnificent in spring and autumn. Saw a group of children “carolling” around the streets – how cute. But oh, this body is not meant for walking and standing so long.

Back aching, footsore and needing a toilet, headed back to the hotel where by 4.30 I was in bed having a “rest” because I was falling asleep in front of the computer while looking at my photos!!

It’s now about 8.30 and I’m not going anywhere – much too cold. Those long johns I bought, thinking I wouldn’t need them – I had them on this afternoon so the cold wouldn’t go straight through my jeans.

Well, tomorrow is another day!!

Thursday - 16 December

So many things going round and round in my mind had to take a sleeping tablet so I could actually get some sleep. Managed to go off eventually and then was up and getting everything packed to head up to James & Jen’s place. Jennifer took me to the airport – with no fuss or traffic jams. As a result, I was there about 4 hours before the flight. Not to worry, had plenty of time to do some shopping before boarding the flight.

Lots of sitting around waiting, but eventually got onto the plane. We then sat on the runway for another hour so it was after 5.30 before we even left Sydney. Now in the air and oh, do I know what Ashleigh meant about the plane not being up to my usual standard!! I was getting excited about the movies I would be able to see – only to find that there are no individual monitors (think local flights between Melbourne or Brisbane & Sydney) – I am watching 'Eat Pray Love' on a crappy little monitor in the aisle. Added to that I am in the window seat – which in itself is not bad – but there is no room to move. Just hope my bladder can hold out for the 12 hour flight!! There are a couple of nice flight attendants, but the one female on this side is chewing gum as she serves and I don’t think she knows how to smile. Never mind, I smiled at her, so that probably made her day.

Not sure how much sleep I will get under these conditions, but here’s hoping.

Well, despite taking a sleeping tablet and watching another movie (Charlie St Cloud), sleep eluded me, so this felt like the longest flight of all time. When I did finally manage to get to sleep, it was only for about 2 hours and I was sleeping with my mouth wide open, so goodness knows what sounds were coming out!

Arrived in San Francisco – lovely view coming in to land, but didn’t spot the bridge (or is that in LA?). At the airport got herded through customs – yep, had to pick up my bag first (bad advice Peter). Then was rushed through to the domestic terminal to sit and wait (some more) for the flight to Boston. Had things not been booked here, I could even have opted to stay overnight in San Francisco at the airline's expense – something they do apparently when the flights are fully booked. And it was – there wasn’t a spare seat anywhere.

Arrived in Boston picked up my bag – took out my coat & scarf – got a taxi and was safetly encsconsed in the hotel room just after midnight. Not bad – only 24 hours of travelling time. The bed looks really inviting.

Friday, December 17, 2010

White Christmas??

Well, at last the pre holiday rush has died down and I am finally on my way. Have just landed in Boston (at midnight), so am going to have a shower and hit the sack - it looks so inviting. Just wanted to get this going so that I would be a good girl and keep the news happening.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Having a very lazy weekend. Long weekend here, so have an extra day to get around to the housework. Have started a new project using Marti Michell's templates. Must admit, I am very impressed with how well the pieces are going together - matching edges is really simple because the corners are all "cut off".

Guess I should really get off my butt and cut out some more fabrics to complete the rest of the blocks. Gotta love long weekends when you have extra time doing all the things you love instead of the things you have to do!!

Oh my, a whole heap of time seems to have gone by since I last put up an entry. So, what's been happening - lots of work (of course), but weekends filled with fun things too.

A couple of weeks ago saw us spending the day at Bulli playing a friendly game of bowls. Have to say that my team won the game on the last end - and it was my bowl that was the winning bowl. Gotta be lucky sometimes!!
Then last weekend it was birthday time. My two grandchildren have their birthdays just a day apart, so it was off to Campbelltown to share gifts and help celebrate. They really are both adorable.

The next one is due in a few weeks, so luckily she won't have to share her birthday with these two!!

Lots of pressies were given for the new baby too, but of course I didn't get photos of them. The fairy quilt was shown, but I had to bring it home. Can't finish the lable until I know what name to put on it. They haven't decided on that yet. I think they are waiting until they are certain of the gender - if we're wrong, I will have to get busy and make another quilt!! Couldn't have a boy with a "fairy" quilt!!

Did manage to get Ashleigh's quilt all finished. The quilting didn't take too long. Put it on the frame and used one of the Quilter's Garden pantograph designs (Ramblings). Oh, looks like they have changed their name to Quilter's Dream & Sewing Machines - and they won the Illawarra Business of the Year for 2010 - Congratulations.
It fits rather nicely on my queen size bed, but Ashleigh only has a double where she is now, so should cover a little more. Shame though - it matches really well with the new towels in my bathroom. Guess that means I will just have to make myself something in similar colours.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Well, another weekend is over. Can't say I have achieved very much - not even what I set out to do, but nevertheless, it has been a very pleasant one.

Managed to finish Ashleigh's quilt top, and must admit I am very pleased with how it is coming along. No housework done, so the place is a bit of a mess - but that goes with being creative doesn't it?!

Went for a drive today (Sunday) down to Sussex Inlet and played a game of bowls with Robert. I played really well on a couple of ends - even managed to get more than '0' for my score. Robert still won but I gave him a run for his money.

The other bit of stunning news is that my amazing son Peter managed to find me cheap flights to the US for Xmas. How amazing - I will be having a white christmas (weather permitting). Will have to be really good now and not spend any money, so that I have spending money while there. I think I can suffer the short term strain for the long term gain! Yeah!!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Managed to get a photo of the wonderful "Peter's Quilt" this morning, before work (really must come up with a better name for it).

The photo looks OK - can't say that it bears close scrutiny, but . . . maybe he can use it for a picnic rug or something!!

Have also got 2 blocks done for a new quilt which will be for my lovely daughter, Ashleigh. She likes the Japanese style so I hope she likes mum's choices.

Actually have all of the first block finished and the one sample of the second one. Going home to work on it some more tonight. I am very happy with the way it looks. And the positive of that is that if Ashleigh doesn't like it, then I can have it for myself!!

Oh I am so tired - why is it I always feel like updating this blog at this time of night?!

Just had to record that I have had a very productive weekend - photos to come (tomorrow I will start doing this much earlier).

Grand achievement - finished a quilt that was started for my son when he was about 8 years old - he is now 31!!! Can't say it's a marvel of stitching - it is a marvel though that I have finally finished it. Promise there will be photos to come. Even though it's not something I am particularly happy to show off, I am ecstatic that one (of many) UFOs has finally hit the dust. Huh - and Peter didn't think he would ever see it.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Did manage to get the original baby quilt finished, but I've decided that perhaps it's a little old for a baby. I have decided that it will go to my older granddaughter, Brittany. She has already seen it and said she loved it, so it will be appreciated.
It was made from Laurel Burch's Dancing Horses panel. Needless to say I really like bright fabrics.

This is the first quilt that I am not happy with. It is now finished and machine quilted but it is not sitting properly. I think it might be salvagable, but it will be a good one to have at Nana's place.

The blocks on the new one are very much the same but for some reason I feel it's going to be better. It had better be - the baby is due in about 8 weeks.

And this is one of the Fairy squares.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Have just bought a copy of Electric Quilt 7. Spent the last 2 nights trying to work it out. Am pleased to say that I have now designed my first quilt. The hardest part has been choosing fabrics.

Anyway, happy with the result of this one. It is based on a quilt that is in this month's Australian Patchwork & Quilting magazine. I have some lovely fairy fabric (will be fussy cut in the blank squares) and I'm looking forward to making it for the newest grandchild. Let's hope it all works out OK. I will put pictures up as it evolves.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Big thanks to the wonderful Lynda for suggesting I attend this workshop and for being such a great travelling/sewing companion.
Wow - what a fabulously tiring weekend. Travelled up to North Sydney on Friday night to our accommodation, then up bright and early on Saturday morning. The day started out with a trunk show from Kellie and then in the afternoon we got stuck into the applique side of the project. This photo shows the finished projects (I am second from the right in the back row).

Had drinks and dinner out on Saturday night at a great Thai restaurant in Cammeray (see Corrie's blog for more photos and details). Luckily we slept more soundly on Saturday night, then we were up and at it again Sunday morning. We spent the morning practicing, with Kellie showing us how "easy" it is (NOT). By the afternoon though, it was time to bite the bullet and have a go myself. While I didn't get it all finished, when I look at it now I am relatively pleased with my efforts. Not the quality of Kellie's work, but hey practice . . . practice . . . practice!!!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Sudoku Quilt

This quilt was made for a very special girlfriend - Glenda. We have been friends since primary school. She is a real numbers person and loves her Sudoku puzzles so when the pattern appeared in Australian Patchwork & Quilting magazine, I couldn't resist.
The quilt has already had one trip around Australia and takes pride of place at the end of the bed. I am sure there will be another trip in the not too distant future.

Off to a workshop at the weekend with Lynda. We are headed to Sydney to attend a workshop with Kellie from Don't Look Now fame. Really looking forward to the weekend. Been a long time between workshops!

Changed jobs about 6 months ago and now have some lovely ladies around who have similar interests. Have seen my fabric stash grow considerably in the last 6 months. Renewed my interest in quilting and I am even finishing some one time UFOs. Figure I have to do something to justify the increasing stash!!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

ZigZag Flannel

This one is a fabulously warm flannel. I love it but others in the house say they need sunglasses on to view it. I love the bright colours, but I guess that is evidenced in most of the quilts I make. Not giving it away at the moment - enjoying the warmth during the cold weather.
The pattern was from a very helpful blog - and it was so much fun to do.

Thought I would share some other quilts I have finished recently. This one was made from the leftover fabric from the Flannel Zigzag Quilt (I'll get this one up too - when I work out how) and has made a very warm cot sized quilt (or knee rug). It has found it's way to my grandson's room - I just need to put a lable on the back. Must do that next time I visit.

Well, have to start the page off somewhere, so here goes. This quilt has been sitting unfinished in the sewing room for about 2 years. Finally managed to put it on the frame and get it quilted.
I am really pleased with the finished article and while it wasn't ever to be anything special, I have continued to think of it as Ann's quilt. The fabrics were bought in Nambour when I was enjoying a lovely break with Ann who had left the local area years ago to resettle on the Sunshine coast. I had a great holiday and really appreciate her sight-seeing abilities.
Hence the quilt has been called "Musical Memories" to commemorate Ann's musical abilities and the memories we share from our school days. I now just have to work out how to get the quilt to her without it costing an arm and a leg!!
Not a bad weekend's work.