Sunday, October 26, 2008

Horse and canola pictures

So hot and windy here that the canola crop is just about finished flowering, but last weekend it was still in full bloom and friends bought their horse out to get some pictures, they also bought a professional photographer out with them, there isn't a lot of difference between our photos so I could have saved them a few hundred there!

I know there are a lot of horse lovers out there..and a few canola lovers by the sound of it, so here are a few I liked...
I taught the young lady on the horse in 3 yo kinder, then in Prep, now she is close to finishing school-kids growing up so fast makes me feel old!

The mountains are the start of the Grampians mountain range, great climbing, lots of School camping grounds and tourist spots up there. They start about half an hour from here and go on for hundreds of kilometres.
Off to spend some quality time with a Dh who is going to have to start cutting hay that isn't really long enough and even some crops tomorrow, not overly happy about that but you can't make it rain.
Leaving you with one of my latest cards as my thought for the day-our babies aren't babies for long!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Winners, shearers and a displaying cards quilt.

How did the promised Wednesday post turn into Friday?

My darlingest favouritest husband shared his illness so I have struggled to keep up with the shearer's cooking let alone the computer, even missed a meeting last night and that doesn't happen much! This is going to be the all time quickest post as well as it is the shearer's cut out party here tonight, feeding between 20 and 30! I have made two of the best pavlovas of my short catering career so i am getting organized.

Shearing looks like a good career when you think cut out party and meals supplied, especially these jam and cream scones...yum!

And then you find out you have to actually do this....
And more of this...

and a bit of this...
..and the job isn't looking quite so great! They average about 150 sheep shorn a day each.
The harnesses they are in are hooked to a high pole and are tosave their backs-but it is still an incredibly hard job.

My boy was very busy on his day off, keeping the floor tidy and chasing sheep to his heart's content.

DH is off in his truck delivering the bales of wool to the wool stores. Did another load yesterday for his brother. The wool is all pressed up into 200 kg packs.

And yes, i do actually sew still! This is my new display board(quilt) for some of my cards, i wanted an easy way at markets, I can now just tie this to the clothes horse or hang it to display the cards. I used clear plastic from when I went through my plastic coated bag stage.
I think you can see the plastic better here.
Finally, some winners! Thank you so much for your lovely comments, was the only bright spot there for a day or two when I felt like rubbish! My girl helped me to draw some commenters and Robyn and Barbara (no blog) were the lucky recipients of a happy pack (that I guarantee will get there before the next millenium!) They may like to drop me a line.
Have a great day, -I'll think of you as i vacuum! Tracey

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Quilt gift-and blogiversary!

I have that happy, but completely exhausted, feeling that you get when you know what you did was giving birth but mercifully without the stitches!

We are shearing here and I am feeding the whole shearing team hot morning tea, roast lunch, dessert and afternoon tea. Around that and the kids I also had to work on my friend's 70th quilt-that was still a lot of blocks short by Wednesday's mail! I had to present it as a top and I will add the missing blocks and quilt it as a work in progress. Thanks for everyone's input, I was a little strapped for time so didn't go too elaborate, I kind of split the difference and went for a 2 1/2 inch finished sash.

By staying up a considerable amount of Thursday night and enlisting the kids on their day off as kitchen apprentices I managed to get it into a satisfactory quilt top by the time I had to serve dinner then race to town to the handover lunch.

Here she is.. and do you think she minds that it is still only a top??? I don't think she would have minded if it were just the squares! She couldn't believe who I had tracked down to contribute a square.

She just kept crying, even an hour later we were having a quiet coffee together and tears were running down her face. I sent her off up the street to get tissues clutching her quilt box tightly before she headed away with the family to her daughter's. I spoke to her daughter last night and she said the crying had stopped but she was still clutching the quilt!
I love giving a quilt to someone who appreciates it, that is really why we do this crazy cutting up of fabric! Makes it all very worthwhile.
My batteries went flat, I'll get you good pictures when it is done. This is Valda's DIL and grandson at the left, and Valda and I on the right.
DH finished his day in the woolshed and went to bed with the flu so i spent a fairly sleepless night on the couch which did nothing to help the tiredness!
I had to stop and let this echidna past on the road on the way to town.
The dress making bug has quieted for a few days, here are the girls in their dresses...and baby Born's to match.
We have taken some Canola photos, if you saw how many it took to get these! The models were far more interested in chasing each other through the crop than cooperating, but that's all fun as well.
Just realised it is my 2 year blogiversary. I think we better have a giveaway, don't you? I haven't got any elaborate idea organized so I think we will stick to the tried and true...leave a comment about something you liked in this post or in the 2 years worth to go in the draw...and I guarantee the prizes (s) will be something worthwhile. I'll cut it off and announce the winner by wed nesday, 22/10-hopefully shearing will be over by then!
Have a great day, I am off to draft up sheep with a DH with the 'flu...oh what unbridled joy!!! Tracey

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Need feedback please!

Hi to all the girls who may have retreated to the computer for a break from the Bathurst 1000 Supercar race this afternoon.

This album birthday quilt needs to be handed over to it's 70th birthday recipient this Friday and is so far still just blocks. I have about 25 blocks, with nearly a dozen due in by tomorrow...hopefully.
I mailed the calico squares all around Australia and this is the result,-you know the late ones are the family who live around here..and me! I love this lady, she was until recently one of my closest neighbors and has been like a second mum...has the dubious honour of teaching me how to gut and pluck poultry...there's a second career just out there waiting somewhere!
Back to the point, after I tidy all these squares to the same size I need to at least start cutting, my plan is just quite simple sashing so it is the blocks that are the highlight. These two choices are about a 2 inch sash and a three inch sash. Which do you think?

Oops, just saw my toes, lucky you, I wont charge extra!
And here's a bit more of a close up of some of the blocks, but if you double click you can get the photos even bigger.
Looking forward to your input, Tracey

Friday, October 10, 2008

Of mail and family sewing....

Now, I know none of you would possibly think it to look at me, but I am 39......well past any age I ever went through of caring about labels. No, of course, I, as a sensible farmwife am only interested in comfort, economical choices and practicality in my purchases.
Yes, that sounds about right...

So, today, this came in a parcel from my girlfriend who lives overseas-she is the one whose Mum is getting the 70's fabric string quilt I have shown a little recently.

Now, the sensible farmwife in me would not scream and do a Jennifer Hudson impersonation in S*x in the City when she unwrapped this.......

-and found one of those things she adores the most....a bag!!!

And not just any bag, one of these bags.....

No, a sensible farmwife wouldn't get excited about that at all....(what a lot of fun those sensible farmwives miss out upon!!)

On a completely different note, in a completely different world, I am sewing label-less baby clothes.
My little niece has got me in the mood for making clothes.
I have adapted a bigger pattern of my girl's and had a good play-don't you love elastic necklines for hiding a heap of sins!!
I don't have this beautiful little miniature sumo to model for me today....
...she was just visiting and laughing at her Auntie Tracey yesterday-all that chubbiness at 5 months old just from being B/F- Not a lick of solids has passed that double chin!

So i had to enlist the asssistance of baby Born's modelling skills to try and work out if the neck will be ok.

As my chubby cheek's head is considerably bigger than newborn I am hoping I am on the right track.
(I love working with Baby Born, she never complains when you bend her arms the wrong way and I have never heard her whisper a word of censure over the pins sticking in her!)
I haven't sewn off the elastic yet, I'll take the machine when i go to my sister's next and do a few of the tidying bits down there-I hate unpicking dress seams just as much as patchwork ones!
My clever sister spied the Heather Bailey yesterday so that is how come it is an accent to the denim! I fussy cut and appliqued one of the flowers on as well-bit bright to see, I'll have to get you a real shot when it's on old chubby cheeks!

The kids and I have been desperately trying to get pics of the cats sleeping on Archie. The problem is when we sneak out the door to shoot they wake up...this is the best we could do this morning.
-Arch is such an accommodating shagpile, I mean dog!

Must be off, there are still a few "how to hold my bag so that you can see the label" poses I need to try!!!
Have a great day, Tracey

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Digital scrapbooking.

I have mentioned my friend Carol's fabulous digital scrapbooking to you before and some of you may know that her dad finally slipped away after a long battle with illness last Christmas day. Digital scrapbooking has almost overcome patchwork for Carol...but we still like her! There are great examples at her blog.

Carol has scrapped a fabulous page for her Mum in a collection at this link. It is well worth a visit and, if you were so inclined, a vote!

Here's the digiscrapping she did for me last year as a reminder of her talent!

You have probably worked out how much I love this yellow canola crop, this is a pic i took this afternoon...sans children. We are planning this year's kid portrait on the weekend.

So, in scary times international times I don't hardly like to think about, much less blog about (when buying fabric from the US is not the cheap option it was a fortnight ago...lucky I stocked up-told DH all that spending was a saving!!!), who couldn't be happy with this view out their kitchen window, pretty good health and a loving family.
Have a great day,

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Heather Bailey fabric play and new ducklings.

We had a beautiful Spring weekend, the crazy kids even jumped in the pool, then yesterday poured and we even had some hail-not enough to damage the crops though, thank goodness. They are all insured for hail but I think the world needs the grain more than we need the insurance.
I have been playing with my Heather Bailey fabric. I adore this fabric but I struggle a bit with it's big bright prints when it actually comes to putting something together, you seem to lose it amongst all it's sister florals.

I decided to cut some 2 inch strips and have a play before I did any serious cutting.

This is the resulting blocks from the yellowy tones. I have mixed the florally Pop garden
up with some more of the more solid Bijoux complimentary range.
I put some of the pink and ice blue floral strips together and definitely thought they looked a bit characterless so I cross cut them and added in black and white polka dots.

I had a couple of strips left so I worked on a post and rail type arrangement with the dots again.
The photos are taken in a huge wind with the yellow canola crop in the background. There are so many people coming out this week to get photos in the crop that DH says we should be charging! There is also a constant stream of planes, we have about 500 acres of it and a lot of the neighbors have it as well, so it is a sea of yellow. Well, we think it is either the canola they are coming to see or Brangelina have moved in next door!

And last but not least after my "playtime"- a bag of course! This was what I originally thought I would like these fabrics for. It is just waiting for a button. It has a plaited handle of the pink and black dots. I just love the big pink floral feature fabric.

Now, I was full of promises last post so I had better deliver on part two, the ducklings.

I took a couple of before shots for you. (The 'ducky' reference is for all you NCIS fans!)

And then we have the afters.....


Didn't ducky-and his yellow friend, turn out cute!

and cuddly.....

and fit in your pocket perfect......

Have a great day, Tracey

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Detox amongst the flowers.

School holidays and the lead up to shearing are cutting into sewing and blog time, my apologies for that. I'll catch up on everyone eventually-and yes, my family's team were the unlucky losers in the football! We wont talk about that!

I am trying to have a detox week, lots of fruit and vegie juice, no alcohol and little or no coffee....let me give you a tip, don't try to give up coffee and rubbish food the week you make over 300 biscuits for shearing, far too many with choc bits!!! Tomorrow is homemade sausage rolls and pinwheels...also not conducive to juice!
Well, I'll live. Looking forward to visiting you all and seeing lots of sewing; until then, here are some garden pics.

I am having a lot of trouble picking out which one lends itself to a card and as I am into bees I do want to choose one of them. Can you help ? ...And I have some hatching ducklings and some Heather Bailey play...stay tuned and have a great day, Tracey