Monday, June 30, 2008

This is cold...

It was so cold this morning when I went off for my swim (!!) that the hot water I put on my car froze instantly, and there was ice on the INSIDE of my windscreen! Figure that out.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

What to do on a wet weekend!

A finished project in place. This is the guest room in our cottage at Coalgate. Doesn't it look inviting? I wish we could get our act together and get it rented out more!!
Here is a boy completely relaxed with his little dog, lying in the bean bag watching Kids TV. We spent the day at Coalgate, just blobbing! I cut out two quilt tops and then spent the rest of the day reading. David was reading and painting and the kids were just mucking around. It was so peaceful. It was pouring with rain and freezing cold (3 degrees) out side, but lovely and cosy inside!

Friday, June 27, 2008

A neat story....

My friend sent me this very cool story! I don't know where its from or who to give credit to, but I love the lessons in it!

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily appraizing a basket of freshly picked green peas. I paid for my potatoes, but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes. Pondering the peas, I couldn't help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me. 'Hello Barry, how are you today?' 'H'lo, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya. Jus' admirin' them peas....They sure look good.' 'They are good, Barry. How's your Ma?' 'Fine. Gittin' stronger alla' time.' 'Good. Anything I can help you with?' 'No, Sir. Jus' admirin' them peas.' 'Would you like take some home?' asked Mr. Miller. 'No, Sir.Got nuthin' to pay for 'em with.' 'Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?' 'All I got's my prize marble here.' 'Is that right? Let me see it,' said Miller. 'Here 'tis. She's a dandy.' 'I can see that. Hmmmmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home?' the store owner asked. 'Not zackley but almost.' 'Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let me look at that red marble,' Mr. Miller told the boy. 'Sure will. Thanks Mr. Miller.'

Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me. With a smile she said, 'There are two other boys like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever. 'When they come back with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn't like redafter all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store.' I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man.

A short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the boys, and their bartering for marbles. Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho community and while I was there learned that Mr. Miller had died. They were having his visitation that evening and knowing my friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could. Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts...all very professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing composed and smiling by her husband's casket. Each of the young men hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her and moved on to the casket. Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one, each young man stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale hand in the casket. Each left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his eyes.

Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and reminded her of the story from those many years ago and what she had told me about her husband's bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening, she took my hand and led me to the casket. 'Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you about. They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim 'traded' them. 'Now, at last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or size....they came to pay their debt.'We've never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,' she confided, 'but right now, Jim would consider himself the richest man in Idaho .' With loving gentleness she lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased husband. Resting underneath were three exquisitely shined red marbles.

The Moral : We will not be remembered by our words, but by our kind deeds. Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath. Today I wish you a day of ordinary miracles ~ A fresh pot of coffee you didn't make yourself. An unexpected phone call from an old friend. Green stoplights on your way to work. The fastest line at the grocery store. A good sing-along song on the radio. Your keys found right where you left them.

It's not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


How in the world did I end up with so many mind numbing jobs to do. Ooooooh help I'm so bored. My brain has SLOOOOOOOWED down and i can't think any more.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


Found the camera down by the sofa!! Here is a bag containing the little boy quilt! Can't show the finished quilt or the recipient might find out.
Here is a wall hanging James helped me with the design. It's made from the left over Orange Crush quilt bits....


I can't find my camera so I can't take pictures of my weekends work - I've offered a chocolate bar as a reward so I expect one of the children will find it pretty quick!! We had a great weekend. David took Reuben to a father/son day at Wainui with some friends of ours. They caught some (tiny) fish and had a generally great day. I did some sewing. I sewed bindings on three quilts and James has nearly finished sewing them all down. I cut all the fabric I had for my hearts quilt and sewed about 18 blocks (its easy peasy). James and I worked out a design for the left overs for the orange crush quilt and made a wee wall hanging. I made a bag to put the quilt in that we're giving away to a nice boy. What else?? hmm. Oh yes my youngest sister popped over on Saturday afternoon, we haven't seen her for ages. So she stayed for tea and we watched the rugby together. Good family day.

Yesterday we went to church and then had a bit of a tidy up here. Then David and James went cycling, Chrissy did some 'study' and Reuben had a play date with Olivia. Shenleigh and I snuck out to the quilt shop in town and I got two pieces of fabric for my hearts quilt. Then we went to spotlight and I brought 4 duvets for $7 and $10 each to use as quilt backs and fabric for a quilt for Jeremy and Eva. They are coming over in August so I'd better get that one made up quick. I'm going to use this quilt by Alycia. It looks simple but effective.

Then last night I was typing up some of Ashleigh's life story and David and I were doing our coaching homework. All and all a nice weekend!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

The roller coaster..

Photographic evidence.... I actually have been on a roller coaster. This will be my one and only ride so had to have photo of it!

Family holiday....

We've had a great week. Last Thursday we flew to Brisbane leaving behind the SNOW and COLD and arrived to the warm warm sunshine. It was great. We've had a very stressful few weeks and it was great to have some family time. This is the actual beach, its real. We walked across the road from the camping ground and hey presto, magic beach.

This is the kids at the Great Australian Outback show. it was Fantastic. The absolute highlight of the trip. It almost made me wish I was Australian!!

This is me and my brother. I flew to Melbourne to see him. We had a great time just hanging out. It was fantastic.

Some what difficult to wake up this morning to -2 degrees and ICY!!! all good though.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Time to catch up...

I made some journal covers... the first one was a bit small, so I gave it to Reuben, the third one was just right. It's for our business coach, John O'Connell.....

We had a big snow dump on the weekend so we went out to Coalgate to enjoy the snow. Here is our cottage looking beautiful.....
And here (drum roll please) is my Orange Crush quilt, which I call Chatharsis....

I got up at 5.30 to finish this quilt top. I've been working on it for a while, and I wanted to steal some time for me to finish it. I'm calling my quilt "Catharsis" because I used all the scraps from the various bits of my journey over the last few months. I had the pink from the "It's ok to be feminine" quilt, and the orange and grey from the "Keep with the process bag" and some other stuff too. I ended up using all the greys from the "Grey day" quilt too. I resisted using them at first, but then I found that as I did, the colours blended together, and I made peace with myself over that part of the journey. It's kind of hard to explain, but Catharsis is a process of finding healing by making things, and it certainly works for me! The result is a very striking quilt, full of precious pieces. I'm absolutely thrilled with it. Here are the lessons I learnt as I worked...
  • You have to look again at the hard places and see how they fit in the big picture.
  • You need to develop new skills to make progress.
  • You have to make peace with your fears.
  • You have to make peace with your past.
  • Nothing is wasted, even the ugly bits.
  • You need to use all the pieces you have to make a whole picture.
  • No point hanging on to old stuff, it can suit a whole different purpose in its new role.
  • You have to have faith in the designer.
  • It doesn't matter if others are future on that you, as long as you keep on with the process.
  • You can cheer the others on, but nothing beats doing it yourself.
  • One day all the lessons you've learnt will come together and make sense.
  • Not till the end will you see the whole picture.
  • Others can have exactly the same instructions and end up with a completely different result. That's ok.