Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year

Welcome 2011

Happy New Year
I am always surprised when we reach the end of another year, and each year it seems to come faster. Whoooo up!

Been a memorable year for me. Of course the death of my beautiful mama in August eclipsed most everything else for me. As we slide into another new year, it feels odd that we wont be bringing her along for the ride. As time drifts on and the years fly she is left further and further behind. Sigh....

Do you make new years resolutions? I don't. I found that I never kept them, the pressure was far too much for me. :)

So instead, at the start of a brand new year I get my brand new diary/book/journal what ever it is that I have purchased and start listing my goals and dreams for the year. This year I might even go one step further and work out a plan on how I can achieve them. Dunno yet, depends on my energy levels, which are still low at the moment.

In keeping with the new year-new start I had a hair cut yesterday. As I rarely leave my home, I have a mobile hairdresser come to me, she is great and have I have had her doing my hair for many years now.

I went shorter than I have for a long, long time. I was tired of my hair, cos there were many days when I did not brush it. The knots were horrible.

So as a start to new things I am posting a small pic to show you, and will also import it as my profile photo.

What do you reckon? The girls think it looks boyish, the bloke says it looks fine! I think it 's fine too and  it's going to be cooler and easy to care for.

Anyway, enough of the chatter, gotta get my head ready for the new plans.

I would like to thank anybody who has taken time to read my ramblings, comment, email and inspire me this year. I hope we can continue this into the new year and even more so.

May you all enjoy great health, happiness, and live the most authentic life you can.

I intend to give it my best shot.

Thanks, see you on the other side of 2011.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

What's happening at your place?

Pretty petunia, the bloke planted many of these this year but after several days of high heat lots died, such a shame

this pic made me look twice a frog in the garden is good luck apparently

  sponge cake and trifle

                     gingerbread and fruitcake

It's fairly quiet here as we wait for the start of a fresh new year. For me this time of the year has always been about being in limbo. You know after the tremendous build up to Christmas day then the down slide as we get ready to embrace another new year. I like to think that the year coming can be better than the last, not sure if I succeed in that idea though. Sometimes the years seem pretty similar to the previous ones.
                    coffee and cheese & tomato toast

This is my most fave brekky of all, actually I have told you that before, but it is worth repeating as I find this fills me up longer. Nice grainy bread, not white. In fact if we have to use white bread I seem to get hungrier much quicker-not good for me.
So what does your morning look like? What do you eat for breakfast that is delicious and filling? I hope to get some ideas as I am due for a change.
I had more photos but because they show the faces of my loved ones they don't want me to show them. One I convince them (read twist their arms) I will post them.


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Blog Issues

Just a quick post to let you know that I have been trying over the last few days to give my blog a new look. Unfortunatley due to my lack of knowledge I am experiencing many problems and as a result the blog is changing every day, sometimes more. LOL
So don't think it is your computer it is I fiddling around.
Please bear with me, and I will get it fixed eventually.



P.S Back again to say that despite all my attempts to create a whiz bang, prettier than pretty blog look I have had to admit defeat and go for a half way decent look in some of my favourite colours. However rest assured that as new and improved information comes to me changes will be affoot once again.

Let me know what you think about it all please?

Monday, December 27, 2010

Fabric Storage & Fruit Cakes

Recently the bloke had reason to be visiting the city and was kind enough to bring me home a very nice and useful present. It was on sale which made it even better.
The moment it was in the house it was loaded, in a semi haphazardly way by the bloke and the other racks and things were quickly relegated to the carport. It's great having a glass cabinet as now I can admire my stash from all angles. :)
And as a bonus my fabric can remain dust free. What's not to like eh?

Try to block out the assorted mess in the lounge. Oh did I say lounge I meant in my design studio. (well it's really the lounge but I can pretend right?)

Note the lovely quilts on top of the cabinet, they look great but I am sure I wont leave them there due to the heavy dust problem in this city.

And last but most certainly not least is a photo of the two fruit cakes my eldest girl made this Christmas. Slightly well done on the outside edges but tasted so beautiful. It a recipe I devised from a few different recipes and in my opinion it's one of the tastiest, easiest, cost effective cake to make.
Although this cake turned out a little more moist than normal and no wonder too when she told me to the 1/2 cup sherry she had also added a dash of whisky and a dash of some other spirit I can't remember. Nothing like a family recipe that can be fiddled with is there?

Do you have any favourite fruit cake recipes to share?

Sunday, December 26, 2010

It was the day after Christmas and ...

Well believe it or not Christmas 2010 is done and dusted. Can't say I am sorry really; cos for many reasons I am not in top form this festive season. Family dynamics have meant that we did not see many of those who we normally would at this time of the year. So much pain and anguish and past issues...all too much for me really. Usually I am the peacemaker the bringer together of the troops, but right now I am experiencing what I call the Black Dog biting, yes depression. Although I am taking medication it is not working as good as it should be, so the result is one not so happy chappy-me!

So I don't make this post all gloom and doom I wanted to put some photos up that the bloke took recently. I think they are a beautiful spot on a otherwise dark period in my life.

Aren't they pretty? These are known as 28's also known as 
common green parrot. Many farmers consider them as pests, but there are others who love them in the garden and grow plants to encourage them to visit. The colours are great on the eye.

The above photos was taken last Wednesday night when we celebrated out first Christmas dinner of 2010. It's a bit blurry sorry but it is a nice reminder all the same. My second eldest daughter and her partner were of to Tasmania the following day to spend Christmas with their friends. Good food, good company-nice.
I do like how the candles look all frizzy, yeh I'm strange like that. :)

What happened at your place this Christmas?

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Different Perspective On Christmas

(This is not my image, it was taken from Google images)

Hello people not long now till the big day. I was reading a blog the other day by a terrific American writer and he was discussing his idea of Christmas in an article entitled: CHRISTMAS EXPLAINED TO AN ANXIOUS HEATHEN

Now it is not my intention to offend anyone with different beliefs, but I think this world is big enough for all our ideas. Anyway he has no objection to sharing his work as long as he is given the credit for it so if you have a few minutes to spare check out Robert Fulghum
(google images)
I would like to finish here by extending my utmost appreciation to those who have been able to take the time to have a look at my blog, and to those who were game enough to make a comment. Please accept my best wishes for a happy, peaceful and rich time with your loved ones during the festive season.

All the best- Jan

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Some of the foods we are eating at the moment

Easy pizza

                   This pizza may look deadly, but in fact it is not too bad. The base is made using only two ingredients and it is the nicest one I have ever tasted. And believe me I have tried many, many types of pizzas. I am from Italian stock after all. Although the picture shows a version with meat, we have since perfected and actually prefer the meatless pizza! I know it was unheard of in this home. But even The Bloke was converted-I tell you that rocked my foundations, his being a meat eater from caveman days. And because I love to share new and beautiful things I will tell you that this pizza base can be made with two cups of self raising (all purpose flour in the USA) and 1/2 cup of natural yogurt (we use Greek). Then it is simply a case of mixing the two until you get a doughy consistency, if too dry add more yogurt or a little water instead. Then roll out to desired size and shape. This will make you two medium sized pizzas.

                My favourite brekky food
Multi-grain bread with thinly sliced cheese with tomato, cracked black pepper. I just love, love this simple but tasty food. The best thing is it fills me up for a few hours. I have it nearly every day, never really tire of it. But sometimes I will have a boiled egg on toast. :)

Choc slice
My eldest daughter is a fantastic cook and loves to fiddle with the presentation of our food that she cooks. We love it. She can take a simple little slice of choc slice she has cooked, drizzle some choc sauce( which I didn't like by the way) shh, few sliced peaches, strawberries,leaves and all, a light dusting of chocolate powder and presto yummy desert.
                     Vegetable Soup
Well what can I say but goodness in a bowl. The bloke made this with every veggie we had in the fridge. Carrot, spinach, cauliflower, tinned tomatoes, potato, onion, broccoli, sweet potato and a bit of vegetable stock powder, black pepper. Beautiful and filling too.

I am thinking that in the new year I would like to really get going with my blog and diversify the subjects I talk about, well even more than I do now.
I guess there are some that already know of the major challenge and mission I am working on and for others who don't, all will be revealed in the new year, if your still  reading and interested.
I have thought long and hard about revealing all-oh hang on don't take off yet, I promise no nude photos or too shocking revelations. :)

I just want to say before I post this, that I was really delighted that you took time to comment on my last blog post. This is a great boost to know that a few people are reading and enjoying some of the stuff I ramble on about. Thanks. Please feel free to comment or discuss anything I write, even you family members who peruse my writing looking for a reason to sue.

Okay see ya all later folks.

Monday, December 13, 2010

What I am liking right now

These are few things I am really liking about this time of the year.
First is the lovely festive cups Gloria Jeans are using, are they not cute?

New plants being potted on the patio to make it more pleasurable to sit out there. Thanks to the Bloke.

This is a small quilt intended for a new baby that is due early in the New Year. A special lady who has been in my life short while and has made such a positive impact is the recipient. I hope she likes it, and understands the appreciation behind it.
Note the hand quilting around each chook. It is the first time I have ever undertaken such a task and really I suppose I am really laying my basic hand sewing skills out to show, but to be honest I am pleased with the way it looks. Of course the stitches could be straighter, neater but given time I reckon I will improve. I enjoyed the process a lot even though I was not sure how to tie the knots of when finishing a section so if anyone out there reads this and thinks they can help a novice hand quilter I would love to hear from you.
Anyway don't you just love the chooks?
Just a thought if you do manage to read this post can you please take a few minutes to let me know. It is so lonely here sometimes not knowing if anyone reads me or not. A few tell me directly but I would love to read comments here too.

Patio garden in progress with the metal windmill we got from my mums place when we were cleaning the place ready for sale. I love it, it's real Aussie.

Well that's enough from me today I am off to have a rest before lunch. It is 41 degrees here today and although I am inside with the air con off my energy levels have left the building, if indeed they were here to start with.
Ciao till later bambinos

Friday, December 10, 2010

Friday's Show & Tell

Hey told you I would come back, did you think I was telling porky pies (lies).

The first picture is a quilt I made for my youngest daughter. It originally started out as a table runner using charm squares from a beautiful range from Lily Tueller for Moda. A real girly but tropical look fabrics. When my daughter saw it she loved the fabrics and because I had made the runner on the large size she asked me to keep on extending it to make her a quilt. No worries says I. Well on I went with two charm packs, and before long I had a fairly large top but not quite big enough to fit her queen size bed. Unfortunately the fabric was not available so I chose something similar from another of her range and I must say it blended in rather well. Of course this quilt is not some tricky design it is just squares sewn together cobbled with the long borders of a mixture of floral and dotty yardage. All in all I am pleased how it has come together and even more importantly the new owner is happy too. I used my new machine to quilt this and let me say that I am very, very happy and impressed. I quilted 1/4 inch either side of the seams. A lot of work made easier by this Trojan of a machine, like a hot knife through butter. The bed is so large compared to my Janome 5027 that I was not struggling to stuff the bulk of it through-true bliss I tell you. Apologies for the poor picture quality, we are still learning the camera.

                 I used my favourite green dot by Amy Butler to bind it

Well that is it for today, I am off to supervise a bit of a clean up in my sewing area. I really need a cupboard for this fabric and one with a glass door so I can look at my pretties all day long.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Short post


This is a post to let you know I am still alive and will return with some pictures to show what I have been up to. I have to download them to the laptop and upload them to the blog. Some sewing finishes and upcoming projects.

Hope your all doing well. :)

See ya soon.