Tuesday, February 28, 2012

February WIP

So if you only had 24 hours to quilt this in, how would you quilt it?  I am thinking in the ditch for the horizontal and vertical lines with a free motion outline around the butterfly and leaf and caterpillar?

Who am I kidding though?  This is not going to get finished in February.  Perhaps it could be my first WIP finish for March?  I will have to go back and read AJ's rules about the 12 projects in 12 months challenge - not sure what happens if you miss a month?  Still determined to get more than 12 WIPS done this year (but I did 3 in January so I figure I have a few already up my sleeve!)

Despite not meeting deadline I am feeling better about this quilt now that the top is finally done!  This quilt will also be the last quilt that I do before our Apple Piecers Quilting course with Lorraine Cocker so hopefully all quilts from here on in will be a bit more exciting than stitch in the ditch?

I feel like February has been an emotionally exhausting month - all the dramas of getting the kids settled back at school and establishing a new routine with the thought hanging over me that it will all change next term anyhow!!!

As of next term I will be back at work 3 days a week.  In many respects it is my dream job at my dream kindy and I will be working the way I love to work, with a set group of children over 2 consecutive days, but it does mean lots of BIG changes - lots of rethinking how we thought our lives would be for the next few years (I had not anticipated going back to work until Maddie started school)  Thankfully, I have a super supportive boss, and the love and support of my inlaws, great childcare, and kids that are pretty easy going and flexible.  I just know that I will need to be way more organised than I am naturally inclined to be and I will also have to overcome the "Mummy Guilt" of not being home with Maddie.  Please don't think I am judging anyone who has had to go back to work while their bubbies were little - I am grateful that I haven't had to before now.  I am also grateful that this is a conscious choice I am making to return to my pre-kids career more for the love of it, and the opportunity, than for the money but I am still grappling a little with the idea of not being around so much for my little Maddie!  Enough rambling - I have a quilt to finish!!!

Oh, and if you are reading this, and you are just lurking and I haven't heard from you for a while why not leave a comment, just so I know you are still there?
Happy Tuesday,
Keep smiling,

Friday, February 24, 2012

A bit of this and that...

Well since I last blogged there has been a fair bit of kindy work, and a fair bit of Creative Memories "work" (if you can call training at a 5 star resort "work" LOL) but there has also been a bit of cropping using Chris Lothian's fabulous "Fast Formulas".

There has been a bit of spinning (more "Ivy" and some "Happy" from Kathy's fibres)  I think I am addicted to Navaho plying!!!

There has also been some more knitting for charity.  The pink one with the heart is going to a friend's new baby girl.  The heart is a bit crooked but I am hoping that is part of the handmade charm!  This wool is so delicious and soft to work with that I am dreaming of a Baby Surprise Jacket (Toddler version) in lime and watermelon stripes for Miss Maddie.

Amongst other things there has been a slow and tentative start on my February WIP - all I can say is thank God for leap years because I am going to need the extra day this month if I am to get it finished LOL

Happy friday,

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Back in the crafty zone!

Why will I never learn that when my crafting mojo is at a low I just need a few quick easy projects.  There is nothing like a bit of instant gratification to get the crafty juices flowing again.  A friend on www.ravelry.com is collecting little hats for a NZ hospital that was affected by the earthquakes so I have been "playing" with some beautiful watermelon coloured 4ply from www.kathysfibres.com and some leftovers from my stash.

This little hat ended up too big for the hospital but found a willing recipient.  I love how this one turned out!  I also really love that it turned out how I planned.  I find crochet so easy that way - I could never mess with knitting the way I play with crochet.  Now I want to make some smaller versions of these for the hospital.  If anyone else is keen to get involved Kathy and I are sending the hats off at the start of March.

Some more impromptu projects - the kids had school swimming this week and needed a separate bag for their swimming stuff - these took next to no time to make using bits from my stash (I think I bought this fabric to make jammies and never got there?)  I lined them with a really thick vinyl that was bought to make a weighted quilt for Autism SA (I sometimes have good intentions - I bought all the stuff and then it got too hard and the child it was for moved on before it was finished - I still feel a bit guilty about that so it was kind of nice to at least put the vinyl to good use)  If I was making these again I would try using the iron-on vinyl as this is pretty heavy duty.  Not to worry as I figure I've probably only got a few years before these Mummy-made bags will be considered seriously uncool!

I've also been doing some alterations on a nasty little 80s number for the 80s Murder Mystery that I am going to on Friday.  My alterations left me with enough fabric for 2 whopping great scrunchies to complete the look - urk!!! The 80s were so not good!!!

There has also been progress on my applique borders and I have finally figured out what I am doing for the Very Hungry Caterpillar.  I may or may not have been slightly sidetracked by a yummy Ruby layer cake that fell into my bag at quilting last weekend (I know - so against the simple living stuff and the 12 WIP but I just HAD TO!)  I am itching to start that project!!!!

I have also spent considerable time op shopping with the Madster (ostensibly to find 80s accessories)  The last thrifty finds included a pair of near new pink converses in Maddie's size, a metre and a half of vintage floral (yeah, I feel just like Kate www.foxslane.blogspot.com )  The gorgeous blue bowl cost a whole 50cents and the Royal Albert saucer (I LOVE Royal Albert!!) was 30cents!!!  I have a slight obsession with mismatched china.

Last but not least, today I found these new cups (4 in blue and 4 in red!) that fit perfectly in the coffee machine - oh happy day!  Can you see a trend emerging in my new crafty space?

You won't hear from me again this week - after teaching tomorrow I fly out Thursday for my Creative Memories Leadership Conference at Kingscliff (such a tough life!!!)
Until next time,
keep smiling,

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Getting into the Groove

This dear boy started school this week.  He went off happily and confidently.  It felt good knowing that he has an awesome teacher, and a great group of classmates going through from kindy with him.

He was extra happy to see one of his favourite people, Kathy (who volunteers at our kindy and had popped in just to help settle them all - Kathy is one of the sweetest people I have ever met so I can understand Dan's crush on her!)

It has taken Maddie and I a while to get used to being "home alone" just the two of us!  I worked Tuesday and Wednesday but today I feel like we have truly found our new groove - just the right mix of housework and playtime.  I took Maddie to Spinners and Weavers (how very strange to just have one little person with me!) and she played quite happily so that I could actually get some spinning done!  There may or may not have been a little bit of adding to the stash (but I figure I have earned it with all the destashing and finishing and purging I have done lately!

Look how organised my storage looks in the new craft room!

On the weekend I also managed to finish my last project for January - my gorgeous ex-pat SIL sent me this tea towel last Christmas and I thought it was much too nice to use as a tea towel.

So now I need to start thinking about February projects (including the dreaded caterpillar quilt!)
Happy Thursday to you,
Keep smiling,