Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Good Neighbours, Mums & Op Shop Treasures

Greetings dear friends & readers 
Just trying to squeeze in a post before we wave Goodbye to August . . . I did not mean to be gone for so long !!!

After 16 years of living across the road from me in our rural community, my neighbour is moving to town.
Lea has been a good neighbour ... the kind that is always there if you need them but doesn't live on your doorstep.
Immediately after selling her property, she left on a trip to her homeland of Holland ... she issued an urgent plea for some kiwiana teatowels to take with her as host gifts

 Luckily I had a good stash of brightly coloured teatowels & was able to embellish some for her ... I do love the kiwiana fabrics, especially the native bird ones.
Wrapped in cellophane with some ribbon embellishment, these were ideal as they sat flat in the bottom of her suitcase.

Lea held a Garage Sale two weeks before moving & I was able to lend her a bit of a hand in setting it all up.
She presented me with a stash of unsold junk treasures when it was all over ... these two items below were some of the treasures ...
Lea had made this ceramic casserole dish herself many years ago at a night school class
I decided to plant it with some small succulents I had in my garden .  .  .

In the $2 shop I found tiny wooden mushrooms which I hot glued onto some wooden skewers .... I felt they complimented the mushroom theme

Lea was going to toss this wooden frame with no glass or back - but I grabbed it instead !!
I removed the wire, painted it pale duck egg & then lightly sanded the edges
I screwed a tiny hook inside the frame & added a $2 shop glass tealight holder
I found a scrap of white vintage lace which I dunked in my cold cup of tea !!! 
Then I popped some dried lavender & a scrapbooking butterfly into the jar . . .

These two items are going for sale in my Cottage
(if I ever manage to get it open again that is !!!!)

A surprise package arrived in the mail from Kiwikid Sue - gorgeous doilies & thread - totally unexpected & SO delightful !!
Mum .  .  .
 After Mum had been living with us for a few weeks & she begun getting good food, rest, love, care & the right medication, her health began to improve dramatically.
This improvement in her health, naturally bought with it her desire to return home again.
Mum has lived in the family home for 55 years, it was her greatest wish to return there to live.
I began to make inquiries with the appropriate agencies to see if I could implement this for Mum
The short version of a very long saga is that I have taken Mum home again.
I stayed with her for a week to ensure that all the help I had organised was put in place
Although I came up against some strong opposition within my family, I feel in my heart I have done the right thing

A small highlight of my week down at Mums came about when I took her for a hair appointment
Knowing I would have a 1 1/2 hour window of time available I contacted my friend Carolyn who travelled down to meet up with me
I gave her the choice of us going for a coffee or a meander around the Op Shops . . . thankfully she chose the Op Shops !!!
This little outing with a friend was such a bright spot in what was definately a difficult week . . .

These items above were some of the treasures I found on our jaunt -
the small glasses to use for candlemaking were just 4 for 50c.

The tablecloth above was definately my bargain of the day!
 Huge in size, handmade with dresdens appliqued onto it, in immaculate condition .  .  . & all for the princely sum of $2.50 at the S.P.C.A shop !!

My last bargain to share with you (again at the S.P.C.A shop) was this bag of teeny tiny hexies ... someone had lovingly handstitched all these tiny hexies - 26 of them.
This find made Carolyn & I stop in our tracks & have a bit of a discussion about whether or not our handcraft stash might very well end up someday in an Op Shop ??!! Doesn't bear thinking about !!!

Finally friends, for those of you that asked for the hedgehog instructions in my last post .... as I am unable to get my scanner to work I have photographed it for you - just click on the picture & it will enlarge

If you wish to give your hedgehog some knitting as Miss Pink has in my photo below .  .  .
.  .  . just cast 8 stitches onto a pair of small size needles, knit a small square until you are happy with the size, then slide the piece onto a pair of toothpicks to which you have glued a wooden bead to each end.
No I do not attempt to knit the piece using the toothpicks!!
Please don't hesitate to contact me should you have any difficulty with this pattern.

Antique Pansies planted at Easter time happily flowering away on my deck.
Have a lovely rest-of-the-week dear friends,
Thanks so much for your visit today - I am slowly getting around to visiting you all at your blogs again !
with much love & friendship,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0


  1. awesome timing,
    had just finished catching up with your posts when you posted this one!
    so good to see you back & happy that your mum was well enough to go home, it's hard choices but i think if they are able to they should be allowed to be home, just hope my kids will let me when i'm old-er lol though i've told them a granny flat up the back of one of their places with my cats & chooks will keep me happy to boot! & of cos my knitting!
    thanx for sharing

  2. Goodness! Where to start...Firstly, where's my
    lemon tea! Ah! mmmmM! That's better! :).
    What good news about Mum Julie..Fantastic! A bit
    of happiness, all round..The furry ones will miss
    her, one less sleeping place! Bless!x

    Love those coloured tea~towels you made for your
    neighbour! It's a shame when a long standing
    neighbour decides to move...although the memories
    remain you certainly miss them!
    All the other three of my neighbours, are still
    neighbours, and we've ALL been neighbours for 39yrs!
    Except for me the others all have Grandchildren! :).

    Love the saying...To every season...etc..etc..It's from
    a song by the Byrds of course called...Turn! Turn Turn!
    Released in 1965...Not my kind of music, but nice! :).

    I seem to be having hedgehogs coming out of my ears this
    week...had one in the garden this week, first one in years.
    A baby one, he/she seems o.k. wandering about quite happily.
    There on the decline over here, usual thing, lack of habitat,
    and people building walls etc..rather than having bushes! :(.

    Well Julie..My pink lemon tea mug is empty, needs a refill..
    I always pop back several times during the course of the day,
    and week, love reading the other comments, and looking at your
    lovely work! :).
    And not to forget...although lacking...BIG (((HUGS))) and X's
    for the furry ones! Bless!xx

    Oh! Nearly forgot...Pansies in the wheelbarrow! Brilliant..! :0).

  3. It is always a difficult abd a heart renching thing when weighing up what is best for our elderly parents. If you feel you have done the right thing, then it is right. Now, I am breathing ever so quickly at the sight of those teeny hexies AND that dresden tablecloth, oh my goodness! So, so jealous right about now. Seriously though, I think after the week you have had you deserve oodles of op shop loveliness. It begs the question, who on earth turfs out such pretties. I fear the op shops around here might be inundated with my pretties at my untimely demise. But then, perhaps I should inform my descendents to send them over to you. =) Have a lovely rest of the week oohing and aahing over those pretties, lovely Julie. Xx

  4. With all your goings on you still help out your neighbour! That's the Julie I know, ever caring. Fabulous treasures from the Naki. LOVE the Dresden find! That would look amazing quilted, so much blank space for quilting. I love how you transformed the sweet casserole dish. Do you need to make holes in the base for he water to drain?

  5. What a lovely, happy post, Julie. I'm overjoyed with the health improvement in your dear mum, and what lovely goodies you found!

  6. Hello Julie,

    I am just popping in to catch up on your goings on as I have been absent and a very bad blogger by not visiting my favourite blogs. I could use the excuse that I have been busy with my new baby granddaughter who was born only a month ago...happy times :)

    Sorry to hear about your mums health, but glad that she is well enough to go home now. I can see why you have had a busy time of it. Hope things settle down for you now xx

    You have had some great finds there! I love what you did with the succulents in the casserole dish and those little wooden mushrooms top it off nicely. And how cute is that little wheelbarrow, it looks so lovely with all those flowers in it. I have a similar barrow here that belonged to my hubby when he was a boy, but I do not think he will let me put plants in it though! Which is a crying shame lol! :D

    Wishing you a blessed week,


  7. Hi Julie! Oh, that's good news! I am so glad you nursed your mum back to health!
    Your op shop finds are wonderful!
    I am praying that you get some sunshine and warm weather soon. Bill will be in your land in a little over a week. They are going down south where it is cooler, right?

  8. I think it's lovely for your mum to have felt well enough to go home, I know that is where I would always choose to be, in my own home surrounded by my own things. Your op shop findings are deliciously wonderful as always xx

  9. OMG!!! so many beautiful things together!!!.. XOXO

  10. Hi Julie, How nice that your Mom was well enough to return to her own house. No place like home I say! That is great that you had a lot of tea towels on hand you could embellish. I have a hard time finding nice ones that are thick enough and not too expensive. When I am at a store I am always feeling them! The ceramic casserole dish looks really cute done up with succulents and your cute mushrooms and I like what you did with the frame. You were gifted some lovely lace and embroidery! Thank you very much for the hedgehog directions. I am wondering if the large bread and butter place would be about the size of my corelle dinner plate which is about 10 inches wide or would it be more the size of the salad place which isd about 8 and one half inch wide? Or are those both too large? Nancy

    1. Hi Nancy, thanks for your lovely comment & your kind words. I have just measured the plates that I use ... the large size bread/butter plate is 8 inches so your 8 1/2 inches would be fine. The one I use for the bonnet is 6 1/4 inches. Honestly you can use any size - I have even made them before with larger plates, but you just have to be careful that the poor teasel thistle doesn't get "lost" if you use too big a size body & bonnet. Have fun making it Nancy ... I look forward to seeing it on your blog when it is done. Do write back to me if you have any problems & I will help you through it. Xxx

  11. Hi Julie, I think you did the right thing for your mum, she will be much happier, great things you got from your neighbour. Thanks for the pattern, still looking for the heads. Take care Julie. Chris xoxo

    1. Thanks Chris, yes I think I did the right thing too. You might have better luck finding the teasel heads in the summer time Chris - I think that is when they are everywhere if I remember correctly.

  12. Lovely post Julie, I am amazed at the treasures you find in op shops! That table cloth is beautiful.
    Good to hear your Mum is settled back home, so long as you have done what you are happy with the rest of the family can take a jump! Hopefully your Mum will be happy and manage for a while yet. Sad to see your neighbour go, the dish and frame you received are beautiful, love the red and white extra mushrooms! Love the Kiwiana teatowels, they are perfect for gifts to give overseas. The wheelbarrow looks very pretty! Thanks for the pattern, I will have to have a go! I hipe life settles for you now and you can get your beautiful Cottage open in the Spring.

  13. Hi Julie, I think it's good your mum is home where she wants to be,hanging on to some independence. Your little mushroom dish is pretty and you have done so well, as always, with things other people can't see any future in and transformed them into saleables for your cottage. I hope you can settle back a bit now and enjoy some 'me time'. Betty x

  14. Hi Julie, wow you have been busy. Life throws some hard decisions our way sometimes but it sounds like you have made the right decision for now at least. If I put myself in your Mums shoes I wouldn't want to leave my home either!
    I hope your new neighbour will be a good one too, though I'm sure you will miss the old one. Looks like you have scored a lot of new treasures and have some new projects in mind for them. Hope the sun is shining there we have been appreciating it here that's for sure!

  15. Hi Julie, so pleased your Mum's health improved, and she was able to get back home, there is so much available now, I am sure she will do fine. I just love the succulent bowl and those tiny mushrooms are so cute! My goodness you have scored a lot of goodies! Those hexes...... wonderful. Hope your new neighbours are wonderful as the last one. Have a great Sunday and week.

  16. Hi Julie, it is good to read that your Mum's health has improved and she is able to live in her own home again - I hope the things you have put in place continue to work well - and she continues to stay happy and healthy. It's nice to see you have had a chance to do a little crafting - what a fun idea to use that frame like that and also the ceramic planter dish looks gorgeous. xx

  17. What wonderful finds at the op shop, and love, love your mushroom casserole dish with the succulents in - perfect!
    Perfect decision for Mum to go home now she is doing better and her meds are sorted. I know its a hard decision but it's what she wants and has to be respected. Karen, Hannah and Baa. xxx

  18. Your absence is understandable, I too have been slow on blogging but I have not been half as busy as you Julie! So glad for both you and your mum that she is well enough to return to her home. I think you have done the right thing, you have done what she wants with all help put in place. Good for you. Oh and well done on your op shopping.

  19. What a clever idea for your mushroom casserole. I made a large canister from that range over 20 years ago!I'd love to come op shopping with you one day. You find the most amazing things, Julie. That's good to hear your mum has been able to go back to her home.

  20. Hi Julie,what a lovely post,love the tea towels perfect for taking o/s's as they dont take up much room in the suitcase.
    I too love what you have done with the casserole dish and the pic frame you are so clever.
    Thankyou for your hedgehog pasttern Julie,hope you have a lovely day xx

  21. Love all your treasures. I've said to my kids that anything of my patchwork ect there when I'm gone don't throw out take to a local patchwork group & give it to them. Love how the casserole dish looks with all its succelents. Hugs, xx

  22. I have just found this teasel tutorial, two years after you posted it. Perhaps you no longer check these but just in case, here goes. I'd love to make these cute wee things but need more detailed instructions, please. What is the diameter of your circles? Not sure my plates are the same as yours. Do you take the stem off the teasel? How big is your teasel? Mine really vary in circumference and length. How do you attach the teasel head to the body? How and where do you attach the arms to the body?

    1. Okay I hope you check back & get this reply as I cannot reply to you via email. The size of the plates - the body size is smaller than a dinner plate but a bit bigger than a bread & butter plate. The bonnet size is smaller than this - the size of saucer that you sit your teacup on. The sizings don't really matter too much anyway. Yes you cut the stem off your teasel & cut it down so it sits in your bonnet without sticking out the back. You hot glue the arm piece to the body piece first & then you hot glue the bonnet to this next. The teasel will already be sitting inside your gathered up bonnet piece. If you need any more information you need to email me with your email address so I can reply privately to you.

    2. Thanks Julie. Don't know why my email didn't work. Ok, my salad plates are 8 and 3/8th inches. My bread and butter plates are 6 and 5/8th inches. A saucer from a tea set is 5 and 1/2 inches. So 5 and 1/2 inches for the bonnet and 8 and 3/8 for the body. Ohhhhh, you just glue the bonnet to the body, not the head. I just did not understand that. Sorry, I seem to need painstakingly detailed instructions.

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