Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Packing and Goodbyes.

These are just some of the books we are taking down to the south island. A lot of books are consumed by our family in a very short amount of time. The thought of running out is terrifying.
Hugo's vest already to be have tails tucked in and be pressed.
Sorting through some family buttons to finish a picture.

Archie in his finished jumper and refusing to be photographed with a smile.
And me in my new red shoes, absorbing the sunshine.
Today is the big packing day as we are leaving for our south island road trip tomorrow. The bags are all bulging and the house will soon be gleaming, ready for our house-sitters. But as excited as I am about leaving early in the morning, like so many people out there, I am feeling completely sideswiped by the passing of Elspeth Thompson.
I won't write too much about it now but just that as an admirer of all her work and a fellow sufferer of depression, I feel so much for what she must have been going through and devastated for her grieving family.
Today in our house the sun is shining and I am so grateful to it for warming our hearts and souls and I will keep packing and I will keep cleaning and I will think of how lucky we are to be taking a family holiday together.
Take care everyone and we will take the computer with us and so will be able to do the odd post. XXOOXXOOXX.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Aututmny Things.

It is the beginning of Autumn and finally, after a little bit of rain, it feels as though the dreadful New Zealand humidity might have been chased away. The sky suddenly seems so high, as though the ceiling has been taken off a house and the atmosphere is clear and breathable.
Cats are cosily curled up on the couch.
Hot water bottles have been unearthed from the hot water bottle cupboard. And vests are nearing completion (only to be discovered there isn't much difference in sizing from last years).
Last night I was singing 'Away in a Manger' to this little Hugo and only sang the first verse. Hugo was feeling a bit short-changed and said "You didn't sing it all, you didn't sing 'the kettle is boiling bit'". I had to do my best thinking which is very hard to do when you are all snuggled up with them in the dark, trying to get them to sleep but also trying not to let your own eyes close. I finally realised he was meaning "the cattle are lowing, the baby awakes". Hugo's version, "the kettle is boiling, the baby awakes" makes much more sense as we have a whistling kettle. I think I know how I will be singing 'Away in a Manger' in the future.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Tomatoes and Crochet and Stuff.

My tomato harvest - the have been quite late this year but completely worth the wait. I love how the little ones were so excited to be picked they started jumping all over the crochet ball wreath.
My mum has been wondering what her emu has been up to. I found it pecking at the boy's beads so I thought I had better take a photo of it. Isn't it so cute!
The next jar cover I have been working on.
And a few flowers to stitch on to it.
Looming out of the darkness like a soul in rapture... Aren't we all just crocheted pieces made from the fabric of the universe. Hmmm, time for the second cup of tea I think.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Thank You Mum!!!!!

I received a surprise parcel in the mail today from my Mum. And when I tore it open I found a book inside that I had been dreaming of for ages, 'A Year of Mornings, 3191 Miles Apart' by Maria Aleandra Vettesse and Stephanie Congdon Barnes. They spent a year taking a photo of one thing that summarised or struck them each morning and then posted them on a blog. The photography is amazing and the synchronicity of their mornings are incredible. I was showing it to my cousin this afternoon and she was flabbergasted to think these women had only met in real life once. Just shows how magical it is to be meeting people the world over through blogging!
Now I was feeling pretty happy today having bought a new pair of shoes for $5 and spent the afternoon looking down at my feet, occasionally clicking them together... And then my niece called in after school for some afternoon and showed me the shoes she had taken in for news. Aren't they divine!!! They are a Japanese type of shoe called geta and are famous for making a click-clack sound and keeping feet and skirts well above the mud. Rose (my niece) told me the kindergarten and school children still wear them to school and revel in the sound they make. I bet. And the best thing about them is that the undersides are painted in an orange lacquer. Lots of crafty pieces to show you tomorrow. XXOOXXOOXX.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Good books, the colour pink and a vest.

A rare moment of pink and sunlight dancing in our house.

I realised today while going through a forgotten about dumping box in the bookcase, how long it has been since I played with my watercolours just for the sake of play. This is precisely the sort of thing I am looking forward to when we return from our south island trip. And spending lots of time exploring collage work. It seems strange to think in a couple of months time I might have a little bit more freedom in my days and maybe even the energy to do lots of stuff in them as well.
Hugo's vest was abandoned for a little while this week when I was working on a birthday present. Now the present has been completed, it is back to work on this. I love doing stripes with an extra purl row, it makes the jumper look even more warm and cosy.
I had thought, because everyone has been so great with their book suggestions, that I had better include a few of my own. If you think of any more, please add them in the comment section.
'Year of the Flood' by Margaret Atwood, 'Animal, Vegetable, Miracle' By Barbara Kingsolver (in fact anything written by Barbara Kingsolver is a gift to the world), anything by Alice Hoffman, I have just started on the Elm Creek Quilters series by Jennifer Chiaverini and if you love Kate Jacobs books than these are for you, 'The Raw Scent of Vanilla' by Emilia Bresciana, 'A Glimpse of Eternal Snows' by Jane Wilson-Howarth which is a wonderful account of the precious time she and her family spent in Nepal making the most of their short time with their baby son when the Western medical system failed them and 'Running with Scissors' by Augusten Burroughs if you are in need of a laugh and simultaneous shudder. There are so many more and I will try to include in my posts what I am reading. But for now, there is a kitchen begging to be saved from a big pile of breakfast rubble.
Oh yes, 'Garden Spells' By Sarah something or other, 'Of Bees and Mist' by Eric Setiwan, '20 Chickens for a Saddle', 'Little Giant of Aberdeen County' - Sorry I can't always remember the authors, they might come to me later.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Crochet, Afternoon Light and Flowers.

Yesterday afternoon I was exhausted after a big weekend and then suddenly, our home filled with this warm, golden light and all of our tired flowers on the kitchen table came to life again. After a huge boy focused couple of days, it was so lovely to have some quiet and gentle beauty radiating from the centre of the house.
And so, needing to finish a birthday present for a friend, I crocheted a cover for a jar. Now I want to make some for myself...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

A Very Medieval Party.

Archie's party was a great success. 11 knights and wizards charged through the farm facing all sorts of challenges and ended with a good round of archery (which was then repeated when all of the Dad's turned up). Archie funnily enough loves archery - my mum suggested when he was born that we name him Archer. Maybe we should have listened...
Straight through the chooks heart.
During the quest they had to rescue Princess Gania who had be captured against her will and tied to the fire crystal tree. Little did they know she was under a terrible curse and had to be freed from that as well. Which they did.
A few touches of prettiness. You just have to have them.

Candles floating in the (jelly) moat.
I think he liked his cake.
It took me a while to cut into it. I did in the end but with surgical precision.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Medieval Birthday Parties and other Scary Stuff.

A sneak peek of the cake. But first...
A nice friendly photo begin this post. The goody bags are made so now all the children have to do is fill them up with precious things from their quest.
Time for the frightening part. I finished the castle cake today and to my dismay, found it completely overrun by tiny, arms bearing skeletons. You know how it can be.
They started shooting at the troops galloping around the moat (which has since been filled with green jelly).

Merlin leaped onto the battlements and started working his magic. The treasure is too important to be jeopardised by a minor skirmish.
See what I mean. Good treasure. Tasty treasure.
Now can you guess what this is. Here is an eye.
And here is a tail.
That's right, it is the incredibly rare 'Snowblood' dragon from the frostiest peaks of the Snowbrides Mountains. It is hard to make out but her wings are velvety and her strange eyes are almost crochet-like which is a particular marker to this species. She will be the final prize to be found in the quest tomorrow. I hope she doesn't become too frightened... I know I am.


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