Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Finger Knitting

Our weekend was very wet and Archie tired and restless. So the finger knitting came out. I had tried to teach Archie traditional knitting a few months ago but he was a little young and felt you should be able to stick the needle in where ever a hole appeared. This of course is a wonderful and creative theory but perhaps a little different to the concept of knitting as I understand it. And then I remembered finger knitting. The simplicity of passing one loop over another using his index finger as the stick was a hit. It really helped Archie to understand the need for precision in the wool's placement and he quickly knitted up metres and metres of chain. In fact, his fingers knitted for two and a half hours straight before he felt the need to stretch.
And what does a boy do with those endless metres of chain? Make an anchor of course and spend the rest of the afternoon throwing it off a pirate ship and hauling it back in. It was also very good for tying up captives.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Comfort Crochet

This is a new project I am working on but I have to jumble it up to keep it top secret. Let's just say that someone (not you Lucy) will be receiving a gift soon. These colours are so soft and supportive of each other they make me want to weep. Um, maybe I am a little hormonal at the moment.

Harvest and Plum Jam

Things have been a bit quiet on the blogging front so I thought I would do a little catch up from last week. Now the seasons are changing, the plum jam is coming into its own bringing memories of summer onto our plates. And autumn too is having its celebration, showering our grass with feijoas, windfall apples and pale blue eggs.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

A Boys' Own South Island Adventure

They are back!!! Yesterday afternoon in a sheen of rain, the ute hauled its way up the drive, covered in South Island dirt and adventure. Two weary travellers hopped out, with road trip debris, avalanching from their open doors. Yes, Jonno and Archie returned to the family fold. Archie was the photographer for the trip and showed me his photos the moment he was inside. I love his perspective, they are so evocative. I know I am the mother and I am bragging but isn't the top one amazing, he really lets us see what it is like to be six, on the road and with the best dad in the world. By the way, the audiobook peeking in front of Archie's knees is "Swallows and Amazons" which he avidly listened to throughout the trip.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

"The Seamstress"

Yes, I completely judged this book by the cover. First of all, how can you go past a title like "The Seamstress" and then secondly, look at it. I have to remember to open it occasionally though. The story so far is pretty good which is an added bonus. Just in the middle of planning another project which of course means that lining balls of wool into a rainbow is a very useful way of spending time....

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Dreaming Jars

In the jar pictured above, I keep my little odds and ends of dreams. This painting is in the process of trying to catch a few but is still so early on in its life, it needs to be developed a lot more in order to attract my flotsam of treasures. Thank goodness I have somewhere to store them in the mean time.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

boy colours and girl colours

I have two boys so my life is made up primarily of blue and white stripes, or if we are feeling a bit jolly, red and white stripes. I love stripes and sometimes have to physically hold myself back from the boys when they are getting dressed for fear of turning them into barber poles. Our house is full of yellows, reds, blues, greens and deep dark pink (which the Archie and Hugo consider to be boy-pink) but there is certainly no pale pink to be seen. Our boys are the old-fashioned climb the tree and jump from a great height kind. They love Robin Hood and Buzz Light Year and Archie wishes his middle name was Arthur and his first, King. All in all, it is a household of boys.

This morning I found myself at home alone and sneakily climbed back into bed with my wool to finish a particularly girly movie I began the other night. And to my surprise, I found myself reaching for the palest pink I could find and started to crochet these blossoms (yes, from another Attic24 tutorial). Even the mid morning light found in my bedroom was unknown to me as I tend to banish myself from there until after lunch. I find the temptation to dive back into my sheets is too much for me to handle. So this is how pale pink looks in the morning, in my house. Interesting.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

My Favourite Mugs

This is one little reason why I can get out of bed in the morning. The promise of a good cup of tea. This is one of those photos where you know you must be a little bit odd to take it. They were just all lined up last night and I couldn't resist climbing onto a chair to capture them. Hugo did wonder why I was photographing them and I told him it is because they nurture hope, dreams and beauty. He sucked his fingers, cuddled his teddy bear and stared at them with his deep, blue eyes.
Hugo just came up to the computer and said "That's beautfiful, your mugs peeking. Do girls like yellow". Why yes son, they do (imagine that in a deep voice).

Friday, April 17, 2009

Crochet Cushions

This is how I have been keeping my hands busy. Jonno was worried it would prematurely age me but so far my joints have been creak-less and there have been no weired mouth noises... not that there is anything wrong with that. By the way, I am still consulting every move with Attic24, it's amazing, go there.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Roses and Maps

Here are some of my favourite things from the past couple of days. The joy Archie radiates after mapping his journey from the north island down to the south and my roses that continued to bloom even when I had forgotten them, hidden as they were in the midst of weeds.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Don't Forget to Pack the Presents...

Tomorrow morning while clouds are still pink, Jonno and Archie with soft feathered feet, are slipping out of the house and beginning on their road trip down to the south island. Jonno's brother lives on a dairy farm at Franz Joseph and so the boys have decided to head down for the school holidays...... which is fantastic..... except they will be away for Archie's birthday. Yes, I will be saying good bye to my five year old and will be exchanging him for a big boy of six. So my mission today has been to wrap and pack all of the presents, trying to insert extra bits of love here and there to make him realise that in my heart I am always thinking of him (even when it looks as I am mostly interested in cups of tea and gentle thinking).

Easter on the Farm

Easter was spent on the farm with Jonno's family in the depths of a willow forest by the creek.
Fires were lit, sausages eaten from sticks and Robin Hood among others brought back to life.
And of course, lots of eggs were found. Cadbury's just aren't subtle in their packaging are they...

Archie in triumphant joy over the discovery of a drummer bunny.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

My Creative Space is a Basket

It's school holidays so my universe of creative space has transformed itself into the dimensions of a basket that can be transported anywhere. I am finding that life is much easier if Archie, Hugo and myself are outside, (some how they remain more lovable in nature) particularly if a sandpit or climbing trees are nearby. It has even accompanied me to one of those big indoor play centres. In my mind I climbed into the basket and hid from the small, screaming children, my hand occasionally lurking out to grasp a hot drink and pull it back in to my soft, woollen cocoon.

Friday, April 10, 2009

A Traditional Easter Mobile

At the moment I am in the process of convincing the boys that our newly made mobile is a very traditional way of celebrating Easter. Even if it is the first year of it. I can just imagine in years to come they will be questioning future partners on what their traditional Easter mobile was like... 'And did you have to smother your driftwood with fake pearls too?'. I have also decided that Easter is when my vintage lace comes out on display, it just seems appropriate somehow. I really am enjoying this more than Archie and Hugo.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

And I wandered away...

The boys were fighting and rather than jumping into the fray as a human bastion of harmony, I walked away. I walked up to my bedroom where bundles of yarn were waiting with their best and most silent behaviour, unwilling to tangle and relegate themselves into a toddler's crafting box.
And by walking away, the boys were forced to find their own equilibrium. Minutes later laughter tumbled up the staircase. It made me realise that farting is such a unifying force and something (unlike the golden chair) they are so completely and utterly willing to share with each other. Air is free and plentiful I guess, even when it is a bit warm and fluffy.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Crochet Evolution

Slowly evolving are my crochet skills. After a beginning of mismatching chain stitches that looked as though they were hooked by an elephant's trunk and then passed through an ant's antennae, I think my fingers are beginnning to find their own rhythm. I am still completely and utterly homesick for knitting, but crochet is proving to be a good new friend with definate long term potential. It is certainly warm company on these crisp. cold autumnal nights.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Crochet Flower Scarf

A moment of sunshine on the weekend. Our house has been home to a minor plague so most of the weekend has been spent on our big blue couch. The upside is that I finished my scarf and had lots of time to tuck in the tails.

Friday, April 3, 2009

a crochet flower met a resin flower.

I am becoming perilously close to developing an addictcion to crochet. During some quiet time today I tackled another tutorial from Attic24 and it was so much easier than I had ever imagined. 'Welcome to a brave new world' the yarn whispered as it slipped through my fingers.
Still spending all my spare time with a gas mask on pouring resin. A favourite family button was trapped today on a piece of vintage lace. Is it weired that I am thinking of all the things today's creations might say to each other and that I have hopes of friendship between them..... Anyhoo, time to cook dinner.

The Best Kind of Teacher

A little thank you present to Archie's teacher who by my reckoning, counts as one of the top three in the world (that includes my two favourites as well). She looks into your soul and makes you feel as though she has found treasure. Obviously Archie feels the same way as he spent the last two weeks drawing pictures for her and then picked out his very best last night (the delicious bundle above tied in ribbon).
And speaking of teachers, I crocheted the little flower above from Attic24's great tutorial. Her blog is so inspirational and has been responsible for me venturing to pick up a hook instead of needles.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Learning to Crochet

Finally I am doing it.... learning to crochet. I looked up 'how to crochet' on youtube and found a great tutorial by Bethintx1. It was fantastic and such a great way to learn because it allows you to pause and repeat steps until it all begins to make sense. It really is like plugging into a global crafting community and I kind of feel that any skill I have ever wondered about is now accessible. Lucky I am not interested in terrorism I guess. By the way, the red circley-square was my first attempt. It is now Ted Ted's little blanket so good to know it is useful already.

Secret of the Leaf

Hugo and I were hanging out in his sand pit today making leaf prints. With a turn of the cogs, the universe shifted and we suddenly realised that the pattern of the veins reflected the shape of the tree with all of its many branches.


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