Saturday, April 26, 2014

Anzac Day 2014

Every year there is an Anzac Day march in our town.

Each year it grows bigger and bigger and that's not only because the weather has been pretty amazing on 25th of April for the past few years.

It also comes down to the younger generation and their enthusiasm and interest for participating in ceremonies that mean so much to our nation.

Little Miss R has been very much at the forefront of re-newing our family pride on this special day.

Growing up for me, I knew Anzac Day was important but it was more significant that I got a day off school.

It's always been a special day but it's taken my daughter to truly bring about a family spirit and special occasion that had been a little lacking.

For the past three years she has INSISTED on being a part of the march in our town.  (She is still only 
8 1/2 years old)

The vintage cars that transport the less mobile of our veterans passes through first.

They are always greeted with well wishes and cheers.

Then come the service men and women who have served.  

For all those who march there are probably at least one or two at home who aren't here for various reasons. 

 My Uncle is one who has never been a part of a march and has no future interest in participating. 

 He also has no objection to my children proudly wearing his or their great-grandfather's medals.

He is proud of Little Miss R marching each year even though he can't bring himself to march himself.

During the ceremony each year there is always a flyover from a WWII plane.  It's usually a Wirraway and this year was no exception.  

There's a brief pause in the wreath laying so that everyone can cast their eyes skyward and the kids can wave and cheer at the 'old plane' that flies close overhead.

Can you see it?

I'll zoom in a bit...

It made four passes during the ceremony but considering the sun blinded me on most of the passes, this is the best shot you're getting.

Once the ceremony is over it's then time to go home and enjoy having the extra time off school to just be a kid.

As well as the excitement of knowing that Daddy will be home from work late afternoon and will be home for a very rare WHOLE weekend.

 xx Susan

Monday, April 14, 2014

Project Ruffles...

I did give you a slight preview of this project in THIS post but I never explained what it was for.

Mainly because it was a gift for my sister for her birthday which was at the end of March.  She basically told me most excitedly one day that she wanted a handbag with ruffles and could I make one?  

Of course I could!  Not that I thought so at the time but why would I tell her the truth when she was so excited.  Also I thought she was a bit bonkers because if anyone knows my sister they would know that Ruffles on a handbag was something that we never thought she'd ever seriously want.

While waiting for the lighting to strike on my dearly beloved sister,  I googled and reviewed and plotted and did lots of maths things that didn't work out.  In the end I found what I thought would be perfect although I knew it wasn't quite what my sister had been imagining.

What I came up with was something that I LOVED  and something I knew that my sister would love.

 Actually I really intended the bag I made to be a prototype and not the final gift but time got away from me and Sandy did visit a couple of times while I was in the process of making it.  So much for being stealthy and sneaky!

She LOVED the colours and LOVED the strawberry lining so the prototype became her very own bag.

Happy birthday sweet sister!  (even though it was a couple of weeks ago!)

xx Susie

I'm now adjusting the original pattern and making another bag that's equally as fun and useful.

Friday, April 11, 2014

On the garden front

Lets get this straight right from the beginning....

 I DON'T garden.

It's not that I don't like garden's but more the fact that I've never been interested in growing one myself.  

The few times I've decided that our garden looks bloody terrible and have a go at doing something about it a toad usually jumps out at me and then it's takes me a few years to have another go.  (Having a toad phobia is not good when you live in Queensland!)

Lately though I've been having a bit of a change of heart.  I'm a little tired of our garden looking so terrible and get a bit depressed about it when I drive in the yard.  I realised that hubby wasn't going to do much about it unless I gave him a little push and that push would require me to be out there in the thick of things.

We don't have a big yard and there are existing garden beds which only needed cleaning up and putting some plants in.  

I decided to begin in the front yard which gets the full brunt of our Queensland sun as it faces west.  That means I only garden in the morning while the house provides some shade and I need really good, hardy plants that not only need very little TLC but can tolerate the full sun and heat.

We also need plants that will grow up and hide the fencing we've had to put up since we got the dogs, especially May since she escapes any chance she can get.

My lovely Mum has come over to help me clean up the garden a bit.  She LOVES scratching around in the garden so it seems that's one gene I didn't inherit.

As for the planning of what I wanted to do I enlisted the help of my Mum, sister and our lovely neighbour whose garden puts me to shame.  Planning is something I can do!

The above garden looked terrible and most of the shrubs and trees really had to go.  They had pretty big root systems and the water mains goes straight past where they're planted so we decided to pull everything out.  The gerberas that were in there could stay as I decided they grow and flower with absolutey NO looking after at all.  They're great plants for me.

Hubby was home for a few days and I'd already cleaned up a few areas and had drip fed him on his daily phone calls about what I was doing.  He was prepared to do a bit of gardening work when he was home this time.

My sister and I headed to a lovely nursery and bought some Azaleas for the garden in front of the house.

While we were there my Mum turned up at my house to help and between her, my hubby and the kids, the rest of the gardens had a cleanup.  Hubby hooked the shrubs with the deep roots up to the ute with a chain and pulled them out so that job got done pretty quick.

We've broken up the hippeastrums that were found throughout the previous mess of a garden and planted them in various areas.  We've planted the azaleas and some succulents to help complement the geraniums already thriving.

The front garden that was an overgrown mess now just looks like a dirty mess.  We've replanted the gerberas and some hippeastrums and next time I head to the nursery I'll buys some pots of colour and I think we'll keep this as a flower garden since the water mains go right through it.

It needs some cleaning up and a bit more work but it will look great once it's established.

Hubby goes back to work in a few day and then I'll get into another few sections.  He can't stop me from doing them if  I do them when he's not here!

Anyway, my Mum and sister are both very happy to help me do what I want when he's not here so he'll have 3 of us to contend with when he gets home!

xx Susan

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The weeks zooming by...

I have to take my new phone into be repaired as there have been issues with it since day 1. While backing it up and uploading photos I realised that it's been awhile since I've blogged and even though I haven't been super busy, life has been trundling along all the same.

Wednesdays mornings are still taken up with knit and natter at Mary Cairncross.  We're in for the long haul there and won't be going back to our houses for our get together's in any known future.  As my sister Sandra said, when it was at her place she'd still look around and think about the floor that needed sweeping or other things she needed to do.

Bugger the housework!  It's coffee, good food and extremely wonderful company.  

There have also been some rainy days with torrential rain all through the night then all day again.  The mountains couldn't be seen either and we thought we'd be washed back down the hill on our drive home.  It was LOVELY!

Of course crafty stuff is still being done amid the eating, drinking and talking.  

I have been a bit lax in the circle area of things and am a bit behind but I think they're looking pretty good.

We're trying to get into the habit of meeting my sister and nephews after school on a Wednesday at one of the local parks.  It's a great chance for the kids to get together on a regular basis these days for an hour before going home to do the dreaded homework.

We're really lucking that within about a 10 minute drive we've got a few amazing parks and playgrounds so we've got plenty to choose from and a variety of very different playgrounds.

Skippy Park is not for the toddlers as the equipment is geared towards older kids, not to mention the 1.1km bike track that goes around it as well.

There's climbing webs, flying foxes, tree trunks, a couple of swings and things for the littlies and other more tactile areas like hills and gardens and things for the kids to run through.

They are all desperate for the new slide section to be finished...

Hubby and I are continuing doing things together when he's home mid-week and the kids are at school. 

 There was the usual standard shopping for things we needed, exciting things like dog food and bulk toilet paper etc.

Hubby did take me out for a late breakfast though which was nice and then on the way home we toured around and explored some areas we haven't been to before (all within half an hour of our home).

School holidays have also started so our days are currently filled with LOTS of jumping on the trampoline, a little movie watching, painting masterpieces and helping Mummy in the garden (more of that in another post).

It's also been ridiculously hot and really humid lately.  Winter is officially only 6 or 7 weeks away but we're having very summery weather.  Relief did come though..

On Sunday I had lunch at the local pub with the girls.  Most of them I had never met before or hadn't seen in 20 or more years.  They were the girls from my sister's primary school class (plus a few extras) and decided that they wanted to start to get together semi-regularly so Sunday was the first lunch.

It was a wonderful day and we're all looking forward to the next get together.  Luckily for me my parents live just around the corner from the pub and since hubby was away I needed someone to look after them for a few hours.

The above photo of the storm building up was taken from their house when  I picked up the kids. 
I LOVE storms and this one was great, especially as it was probably the last one for the season.

Eating out, catching up with good friends and family, a little crafty stuff, fun times with kids, special time with my honey and a storm to top it off.  It's been a pretty good few weeks.

I even had a train trip to Brisbane in all that which was a complete novelty for me.  We won't go into that right now because I was there to support my brother again with the latest of his court cases.  Lets all be thankful that he still has the boys.

xx Susan

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

A craft room project

In a previous post I mentioned how I had a new project on the boil and gave you a sneak preview.

Yes it's a very blurry picture of corflute or fluteboard or whatever you want to call it.  So apart from Real Estate signs, what on earth would you use it for, especially in a craft room?

Behold it cut up into much smaller pieces (thanks to hubby's trusty knife which I need to put back on top of the fridge before he arrives home in a few days.)

Are you starting to work out what it's for yet?

I'll give you a hint.  It has to do with THIS!........

I've got a pretty good fabric stash right now, not only from things I've bought over the years but from my sister and mother having a cleanout as well.  My mum also passed on a lot of material that belonged to my Grandmother too so I've ended up with quite an abundance of material.

So far it's looking much better and is so much easier to see exactly what I have.  Unfortunately I ran out of fluteboard so I need to head back to the hardware before I can finish what I started.

xx Susan