Sunday, October 13, 2013

A bit of a blur . . .

Hello dear friends & readers

This past week has gone by in a bit of a blur . . . 
The highlight was definately the return of "the travellers" (my youngest son & his fiance) after their 6 week Europe trip 
On Wednesday I drove to the big smoke to collect them from the airport ... but first I had to deliver some very special cargo to their home in Hamilton

dear little Karma who missed her Mum & Dad terribly but was sooo well behaved
It was wonderful to see them come through those Customs doors - both smiling - "I missed you" were my sons words 
Since arriving home he has emailed me some pictures of himself in far fetched places ... 

A" free spirit"  is my son .... Love the glasses Kayne  :-)

I think he was looking up at a plane ??  or daydreaming maybe ??

I look at these & its hard to get my head around all the places he has been & the things he has seen ...(& I must confess that a tiny part of me would really like to send these pictures to all the teachers that repeatedly told me my son would never amount to anything in life!!!!)

I was also rather spoilt & received some delightful gifts 

The wee Owl was from a tiny village in Cinque terre in Italy - the lady was sitting in her Craft Shoppe overlooking the ocean - stitching them (Oh the poor lady!!!!!!) Incidently they said I would've thought I had died & gone to heaven had I been in that shop!!!

When I look at this photo they sent me .... OH YES ... I can see why !!!!!!!!
Looks pretty much like Heaven to me  :-)     click on the pic to enlarge it - its gorgeous !!!!!

After the 10th my moon calendar told me it was very good fertile planting time & most prolific for sowing & planting all that produce above ground . . .  so I planted come courgettes & cucumbers
 (my friend Donna had very good success with growing hers in tyres last year, so I thought I would give it a try this season)

We are experiencing the most awful chilly winds at present, so they are looking a little wind blown
A dear blogging friend Shane & I did a "seed swap" through the mail - you can read Shanes post about it here - so I planted the gorgeous variety of seeds that she so kindly sent me also.
(thank you all for your lovely comments about lunar gardening ... it seems there is lots of interest out there so I may keep "mentioning" it on my blog from time to time)

Last year I made pincushions from some vintage china cups & saucers, but they did not really sell in the Cottage, so I decided to try something else . . .  birdfeeders seemed a possibility ??

I have one in my front garden & often get comments on it ... so thought I would give it a try . . .  they look lovely sitting in the Cottage garden (the green stake is removable by the way)

At the start of the week ... I took a long hard look at my bathroom & decided it could do with a revamp.
Having neither the time, money, nor the energy to do this task . . .  I decided to improvise . . .  
& make a new curtain for the window  :-)

In fact, the curtain that was already there - having decided it was just dusty & needed a good shake - upon taking it outside & doing this - it promptly fell to pieces on me ... it was faded & rotten !!!!
So I decided to line this one to prevent fading & also, the sun rotting it ... I found some calico in my stash, along with the blue check seersucker type of fabric that I used.
To tell you that I very nearly threw the sewing machine out the window during the making of this . . . 
 would be the honest truth !!!!
Give me a fiddly doll to make anyday!!!!
The bows are purely decoration & serve no useful purpose whatsoever!!!
Upon completion I asked the Mr what he thought of my new blind ??
"Very blue" was his reply !!!?
So then I turned my attention to my little wrought iron chair, gave it a whisk of paint with a spray can - then decided to recover the cushion squab that was on it (& rather water stained) - I used the oilcloth I had bought several months back (& also the help of my friends industrial sewing machine)

The linen cushion was a pair of trousers given to me by my mum (many moons ago) & still in the "cut-out-ready-to-be-made-up" phase
I couldnt resist attaching one of the beautiful crochet hearts sent to me by my friend Amy - to be used as coasters 
But, Oh ToO LoVely to sit your mug of tea on !!!!

Thank You So Much dear Amy
Sometimes as I am rushing about my day or my week, I occasionally catch glances of vistas in the garden & they make me stop & appreciate them for a minute ... because they pass by so quickly with the changing of the seasons ... this was one such view last week as I hurried to open the end gate for a customer

The blossom petals reminded me of confetti on the ground

While pegging out the washing I noticed the wisteria flowering & the purple catmint underneath it 

I read this post by eco ethel with great interest - I absolutely loved what she had done with the jumpers/jerseys
I mentioned to her that I had been making herbal mothball sachets this week & promised her the recipe

(for eco ethel .. & for all of you) x0x0x

Herbal Moth Sachets:-
50 grams dried rosemary
50 grams dried mint
50 grams dried thyme
25 grams ginseng
200 grams whole cloves
mix together & place in squares of muslin
I also add a good handful of dried lavender to my mixture + the ginseng I buy as a tea (or teabags) from Health Food Shops.

Hopefully this will help keep the moths out of your woollens & not leave that nasty napthalene smell that mothballs seem to

Well friends I have another box of soaps arrived that need labels made for them

The house is quiet & I am burning my Apple Spice Wax Melt - so it smells like someone is cooking delicious baking ...

which - unfortunately . . .  they are not ! ! !
And this lot awaits me on my dining room floor - which I need to finish before the Mr arrives home  :-)

"Works-in-progress" which I shall show you next post.
Have a wonderful week filled with only good things,
thanks so much for your visits   :-)
much love/hugs/friendship to you all
Julie x0x0x


  1. You always seem so busy. Going to have a go at making the Moth proof sachets. Very useful for all us yarn workers! x

    1. Hello Jacqui ... just wanted to let you know I am having trouble leaving comments on your blog as I am not signed with Google +. I will have another try tomorrow as I would really like to comment on your posts ... love what you do. Thanks so much for stopping by - do give the moth sachets a go as they are great for your yarns & I sell lots to the textile ladies. Thanks again, Julie x0x

  2. I copied the recipe for the moth sachets - we get so many moths coming in from the woods at night if someone opens a door or a window that we need to protect our clothes., thankyou. You are always making so many things all at once I don't know how you do it - it has taken me weeks just to cut out a pattern and still no material for my project! I am interested in your lunar gardening methods so will look forward to learning more from time to time here. Betty

  3. Your son looks like he had a wonderful trip and is enjoying life - good on him! We homeschooled our kids as both didn't fit in "the system" our dd found learning easy and our son didn't with having dyslexia - hence why we took another path. I've just finished Arise Sir Jamie Oliver: The Biography by Stafford Hildred, Tim Ewbank and loved hearing ( an audio book) Jamie's journey with dyslexia and the teachers being surprized at what he had achieved since he didn't fit into the "boxes" school sets....Love Leanne

  4. Hello Ms Astonishingly Industrious! That was lovely to see your boy home again...what a dear wee dog. Love their sweet gifts to you & the photos to put it all in context. I love gingham & particularly like your new blind...they are fiddlier to make than you think! Thank goodness Rob can "see" how to do all the threading or I'd be there all week & still in a tangle.
    What a lovely combination...the wisteria & catmint together. What perfect timing..I was just thinking about that sachet recipe of yours over the weekend & perhaps popping some of our blanket stash away, & here it is so I can get on & gather the ingredients tomorrow....thank you!
    I did manage to find the same moon calendar at our organics shop. I got Rob to set it for me & then put a paper clip on it so I didn't turn it by accident (well until next month). It was great as a prompt...I sowed seeds, took cuttings of some roses (one for Shane) & planted tomatoes over the weekend. Finally I am having a go, thanks to your''ll be interesting won't it.
    Just wondering if the birds come & feed from your bird feeder in the front garden. I had one for a while but they never went near it here.
    Much love & friendship, Catherine x0x0x

  5. Your piping is exceptional! I still find it strange to see spring happening while living in autumn's like you are in a time warp. Two identical dining room floors at different ends of the earth, how funny! Thanks for the recipe... just off to get some gin...I mean ginseng! Your basket full looks delicious, if only we had scratch and sniff blogs. xx

  6. Wonderful newsy intersting post full of lots of yummy eye-candy!! Sounds like your son had a fabulous trip, how exciting to receive the little goodies from around the world and how nice they were thinking of you while away :-) I'm keen to try the recipe for the 'mothballs' best had get me a new thyme plant, other than that I can rustle up the other ingredients! Love the vistas out in your garden. Have a fab week!!!

  7. Hi Julie, maybe I shouldn't be sharing this but your comment about wanting to throw your sewing machine out the window made me think of my mom! When I was younger, she got so frustrated with it that she literally threw it across the floor! It was still plugged in and knocked out all the power in the house! I hope I never get that frustrated! On a happier note, love that your son knew exactly what his mom would love when he was traveling. I love that he knows you so well.

  8. What a clever son to choose such lovely gifts for you. So many lovely things in your post, your bathroom makeover is beautiful and the china cup bird feeders are gorgeous too. Your garden is looking beautiful too, hugs Wendy xx

  9. Your son looks happy. I wish the tea cup bird feeders were finished when I was visiting, because I would have added one to my purchases! Your garden is so pretty & makes me think I would love to have a cottage garden again, each spring it is a treasure trove. Yes the Mr is right the curtain is blue! Oh so pretty blue :-)
    Looking forward to seeing the painted goodies finished. I saw a couple of stools on my trip home, but I couldn't decide how I would paint them?

  10. Dear Julie, such a lovely post. Your moth deterrent muslin bags look so lovely all together. Think I will come and get some. I have had your moth repellant muslin bag before and it is great. I bet it was wonderful to see your son home especially bearing such lovely gifts.Love the bird feeders, they look wonderful as does everything else you are doing. Hugs Shirley

  11. Hello Julie,

    Welcome back to the travelers , I am sure those school teachers regret what they say sometimes, life experience is what counts in life. Your shop must be an absolute delight to visit. The teacups look right at home in the garden, you could even put a citronella candle in their to keep the mozzies at bay when you are entertaining outside.

    Happy days.

  12. Hello dear Julie
    I was sure I had already left a comment on this post - maybe I didn't press "publish" properly..or it's still in orbit in cyberspace! LOL!

    Aww your precious family are home - I for one knows how very special that must be - bringing such lovely gifts from Harrods and the owl from the shop on the Cinque terre.
    I can see you in that special shop too Julie! I've seen quite a lot of Italy but not that area but I've talked to people who have done the walk - it sounds amazing.

    The cup& saucer bird feeders are such a clever idea – I can see some fairy mushroom houses too – they look gorgeous in amongst the Granny Bonnets – I have to find some of these! I wonder if Catherine’s got these in her garden?

    A lovely crochet heart from Amy – I wish she lived here and could teach me to crochet…LOL

    Julie you must print your photo of wisteria and catmint onto card stock – it will make beautiful cards you could sell in your shop – maybe a 6 pack and include the cup bird feeders too!! Just a thought.
    Love the moth sachets – there’s about ten posts in this one – so many ideas to take in.

    I'M SO INSPIRED - as I always am by your lovely posts!

    Guess what? Seeds all done – I made newspaper containers as per Leanne’s tutorial/video!
    Thank you for your timely reminder about the 19th – I can't wait to see some little green heads poking through the soilt!
    Enjoy your weekend


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