Friday, June 27, 2014

A Suesday & a Bag Lady . . . .

Hello dear friends & readers

Last week I got to (kind of) take part in a Suesday,
"What on earth is a Suesday"???!!!  I hear you all asking . . .
My fellow blogger friend Sue whom I made the Pay it Forward gift for in my last post came to visit me with her other friend ... also called Sue ... from here

Every so often these 2 lovely girls go out for a days Op Shopping & call it a "Suesday" ... 
as they came across to visit me, I kind of got to take part in a Suesday
You can read Sue's post about it here & the other Sue's post about it on her blog here
It was honestly SO lovely to meet some other bloggers from my region
. . . AND . . .

. . . they came bearing gifts . . . 

the cutest little cane basket filled up with Sues lovely homemade jams & jellies (with doiley lids) & topped off with a vintage sheet  . . .
We had the most wonderful morning together & then I sent them off with an Op Shop map of my local area
Thank You SO much girls for taking the time to travel out to visit with me (& Mum)  :-)

Also this past week I have had my Mum staying with me - Mum came up for a small family get-together which I drove her to over at a lovely cafe at Papamoa Beach

Mum is 85 now & originally came from a family of 13 (11 children, 2 adults),  there are only 7 remaining now - 
4 pictured above + 3 other brothers who live away
I love being a part of these family get-togethers while we still can 

Me & my little tiny Mum
While Mum was with me I had an order for some sheepskin slippers -
 "size 2 with some pink/mauve in them" was the request

Mum knitted frantically while she was here & managed to finish them before going home 

I have not done any sewing or crafting for a week & I almost have the shakes !!!!
Prior to Mums visit, & inspired by the bag I made for Sue last post, I made a few more bags from some vintage blankets & fabrics I had in my stash

The pattern is a Kwik Sew design, style No 3171 -
 I had been either gifted or thrifted the cane handles so long ago I can barely remember

This lovely Sanderson Linen one is - perhaps - going into "Julies wardrobe" & not into the Cottage stock I feel

I lined each one with vintage fabrics also

A customer commented last week "gosh you sure have lots of feral animals choosing to live round here"

She had spotted the kittens on her way in ... & then the doves on her way out again

I did have to laugh at little squawker & little sickie this week

Although they were certainly not hungry, they just had to sit up on the birds dishes to prevent them from flying in to eat ... I think sickie may have had a little "taste test"

this little rascal here has melted my heart in ways I just could never have imagined ... even though a good puff of wind can blow us sideways,  we think we are 10 feet tall & invinsible !!!

And dear old Bob still remains very much on the fringes of it all ...
he is happy to consume our food & milk but do not expect any further interaction thanks very much!!

Well folks I am off to town for a haircut - I hope you all have a wonderful weekend & find some creative time in the days ahead
Thanks so much for stopping by to visit me today
much love & friendship,
Julie x0x0

Friday, June 20, 2014

lovely packages, apples & string jars

Hello dear friends & readers

I managed to complete my first Pay It Forward gift for Sue last week & my son delivered it for me

The bag pattern is by Ellen MacGregor "afternoon tea bag" from an old Handmade Magazine

I thought long & hard about what to make for Sue & also "stalked" her blog quite a bit  :-)
I saw that she loved to wear purple & hot pink quite often ... I remembered I had this lovely pink/purple wool blanket I had bought from the Sallys Shop in Stratford so I decided to make her a bag ... 
plus I made her a lavender heart & a wool blanket cat from the remnants as Sue always leaves me lovely comments on my posts about the kittens

I lined the bag with this gorgeous vintage sheet which came from the Hospice Shop in Hawera ... Sue is a real Op Shop Queen & I was so pleased to be able to make her gift from thrifted items 
I added in one of my friends lovely Infused With Nature soaps (which I stock in the Cottage) plus a notepad & some thrifted magazines
You can read Sue's post about it here ... she was most delighted with her gift & has used the bag already  :-)
(Also a big thanks to Sue for putting her hand up to take part in the P.I.F. exchange)

While on the subject of lovely gifts ... I received this most amazing package in the post this week from dear Shane
Earlier this year Shane won my Angel Giveaway - you can read about this here & also in Shane's post here

Shane had been gathering together vintage doilies, trims & fabrics that she no longer had any use for & making up a box to send to me ... opening it was just like opening a treasure trove ... everytime I look at it all I still find something new to see & enjoy   :-)

I almost needed a wide angled lens to photograph it all spread out on my bed
Thank You SO VERY MUCH dear Shane for your kind & thoughtful gesture which quite simply made my week  

Also last week I made some more apples ...
 I sell these in my Cottage & was down to just one lonely little apple sitting in the dish . . .

. . . so I made another six to keep it company . . .

These are just made from scraps of fabric but I add a piece of cinnamon stick which I scent with cinnamon/clove oil ... lean in real close & take a big sniff   !!!!

When Leeanne came to stay the other weekend we sat & made some string jars ... we just used old Agee Jars & "primified" (not sure if thats a word actually Julie!!!) them up a bit

. . . this was my jar I made with Leeanne . . . 

So after buying another 4 jars on trademe I sat & made some more yesterday - while it poured with rain

They were such an enjoyable & fun thing to make & a pleasant change from sewing  :-)

The Kitten Diaries part 2 :-
(yes you may close your browser now if you so wish !!!)

We lost a kitten this week - little whitey (yes the one with lots of white on it in case you wondered!!!) met an untimely death down at the depot yard - 

Little Whitey was a beautiful looking kitten & loved the string game

the driver who accidently run her over (yes, she was a she) has offered to take little squawker (yes the one that squawks alot!!!) when I can quieten him/her a little more
... here we all are wearing our funeral faces for a day...

thats little squawker sitting in the mangle
Little sickie was none too traumatised & fancied herself some schooling this week

On my best behaviour & ready & waiting for the teacher !!!!????

They have discovered the Mr's fishing net & it makes a great playing & hiding spot

  Also on top of Nero's kennel is an old cane bike basket that is a great favourite

Hopefully by my next post, we shall be down to just two kittens & little squawker will have gone to its new home (Oh & not been returned either!!!)
Thanks so much for stopping by today - have a wonderful weekend everyone,
with much love & friendship,
Julie x0x

Thursday, June 12, 2014

The blink of an eye . . .

Good afternoon dear friends & readers,

The past couple of weeks has passed by in the blink of an eye ...

Last weekend I had the unexpected pleasure of a visit from a  friend I originally met through my blog  -
my dear friend Leeanne from quiltmekiwi came down to the Waikato for a couple of nights.

"Lets go Op Shopping" was her only request ... I was more than happy to oblige   :-)

The left hand pic is my car boot after our day of hitting the Op Shops & the right hand pic is (some of) my stash spread out on my bed

This was the end of my lounge as I hung all my Op Shop treasures on the clothes horse to dry after soaking & washing them ... I love this sight  :-)

(It was so lovely to spend time with Leeanne, & even though The Mr & I tried really, really hard ... we were unable to sneak a kitten into her car before she went home again!!!)

After Leeanne's visit the rains came & have stayed around for the rest of the week, so I have been spending some time in my sewing room.

Last winter I took part in The Hottie Project & was really pleased when I got Lisa's email inviting me again this winter as I think it is a fantastic project

These were the four I managed to stitch up & post off to Lisa ... I tried to make a selection that was suitable for both boys & girls, & especially loved the v-dub beetle fabric which I teamed with the orange retro blanket.

My baby cuddly blankets in the Cottage were looking a little depleted, so I ran up some more fleece cuddlies from this gorgeous polar fleece I had purchased while down at Mums in April.

Several months ago I bought these plain glass jars in the "sale bin" at my local Supermarket & popped them aside with a project in mind
 I had an idea floating around in the wilderness that is in my head to make up some herbal bath sachets ...

I made up a combination of rose petals, lavender, oatmeal, a few herbs & some epsom salts ... then I realised the plastic stopper actually comes out of the lid, so I filled some with dried lavender & some with rose petals 
(& yes, I did have to "test run" one under the tap in my bath that very night)

I was especially pleased with these beautiful sheets of "Vintage Adverts" that I was able to get from Paperzone & use as labels for the jars 

This little doll belongs to my sister-in-law & was bought back for her from Vanuatu

 She was dressed in a ghastly plasticy dress which we removed - my sis-in-law asked me to dress her in a simple white dress with a touch of black & turquoise (the colours of her newly decorated bedroom)

She was so difficult to fit any clothes on that I ended up actually removing her head from her body!!!!
The little box sitting beside her was to give me the exact shade for the turquoise - I hope to come across a small turquoise flower to pop in her hand when I am next in town.

Warning  :  Kitten photos !!!!!

The Kitten Diaries:-
(for those of you that wish you may close your browser now)

We have discovered that Mums potted grasses in the terracotta boots makes the most wonderful soft little "nest" to sit in & bounce a bit ...

We are eating lots & growing fast - we prefer to be outside but sometimes at night we will venture inside for one of your stupid games that you play with us involving string & paper ...

The smallest of us (little sickie) prefers Mums fabric wrapped balls to chase but sometimes you need a little nap part way through this game

We have stopped hissing & spitting at you but we really prefer not to be patted - thanks very much

We often go walkabout for a day or two & sometimes we wonder why you come out in the most appalling weather conditions to look for us . . . (we figure you must be quite insane) ... calling us in that stupid voice you use ...

Our adoptive Mother .... & no, she is not weeding the garden ...

Thanks so very much for your visit today folks - I have an appointment with my sewing machine this rainy afternoon
Wishing you a wonderful rest-of-the-week
much love & friendship to you all    :-)
Julie 0x0x