Monday, May 20, 2019

Handmade Gifts & "A Mexican Standoff " ............ Catch Up Post #3

Greetings dear friends & readers &
Happy Monday to you all !!

April & May are my busiest months for family & close friends birthdays - I have 10 altogether over a 6 week period.
Although I purchase some gifts, my budget certainly doesn't allow me to buy them all & besides - I really LoVe giving handmade πŸ’›

This year I had two close friends having special birthdays - the first was my friend Carolyn 

Now by the time you reach "certain ages" your Homes are full of things & the last thing you need is more "stuff"
So I decided this year to give my friends useful gifts.

I used Jenny's wonderful tutorial * Here * for the decorated teatowels, Fee's amazing tutorials * Here *  & also 
* Here * for the decorated rubber gloves - & the beeswax wraps 
The knitted scrubby cloths are a free pattern download from * here * ... I have knitted these before & the yarn is great value as you get at least 4 cloths from one ball!
As I had recently made up a large batch of Miracle Spray I filled a spray bottle to tuck in with Carolyn's gift & also printed off a copy of the instructions 

My second friend having a special birthday in May was Donna who is turning 60.
I made Donna up a red themed gift for her kitchen using this gorgeous kiwiana fabric - I knew Donna loves native birds so this was perfect for her.

Once again I trimmed teatowels & matched the gloves .  .  .  .

.  .  .  .  & knitted cotton/bamboo dishcloths, scrubby's & filled this sweet little pot with a handmade soy candle 
Lime, basil, mandarin scent.

Both these gifts were posted to their recipients, who were delighted to receive the handmade goodies πŸ’—

My final special birthday for May was my grandson Alec - a robot obsessed little boy who was turning 4 !!
I had bought a metre of this lovely robot fabric a wee while ago on sale at Spotlight

As Alec is now in a bed, I made him a pillowcase using this great Tutorial from Tiny Happy
As the fabric was especially wide, I had quite a chunk leftover so I decided to make him a book pillow

Though I had not much of a clue what I was doing .... I made a simple pocket on the front 
 When I came across this robot motif I decided to embroider Alec's Bed on it & applique it to my pocket

The finished book pillow top left - a trip to my local Paper Plus did not unearth any robot books but I decided 
Dragon's would suffice instead πŸ˜‰

As Alec is currently having swimming lessons I purchased this cute wet bag from a lovely home based business 
for him - the robots on it were just perfect!

My daughter in law requested my usual sweet platter which is popular with the grown ups as well as the littlies  -  & I also made a plate of salmon rolls for the party

We had the most wonderful time & even the sun came out so the children were able to get outdoors.
Alec had a chocolate cake decorated with an edible picture - Transformers of course πŸ˜ŠπŸ’™ !

Phew - now that I have finished with the run of birthdays for a wee spell, perhaps I can get back to my Orders again.

Last week I gathered a large box full of walnuts from the front yard ... after a day or two I noticed Blackie sleeping in the box, on top of the walnuts.       Can't be very comfy I thought ??
So - kindly - I tipped all the walnuts out & placed a nice wool blanket in the box & gently lifted him back in.
He immediately hopped right back out, gave me a filthy look,  a flick of his tail -  & huffed off  !!

Two hours later & who do I notice sound asleep in the banana box ??
Miss Pippy  πŸ˜ΈπŸ’›

Roll forward to the next day & His Lordship decided perhaps he could "suffer the banana box after all" !!??

So no words are needed to show you what happened next . . . . . .
I think you call this  A Mexican Standoff ??!!!

         .  .  .  .  .  .  suffice to say, I am currently on the look out for a second banana box !!! 😣

Have a wonderful week ahead dear friends,
Thanks so much for your visits here today,
With much love & friendship to you all,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0x

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Craft Group Decoupage & "Paint Me Vintage" .......... Catch Up Post # 2

Greetings dear friends & Readers 
Welcome to Catch Up Post No 2 !!

On Monday of last week our little craft group got together again - our meetings have been sporadic this year but 
there are no rules πŸ˜‰
We all met up at Joyce's home to do some decoupage using paper serviettes.
Sharlaine's work above left & Joyce's to the right

Some of us had painted wooden items to bring along to decoupage.
The technique we used was simply to mod podge the cut out serviettes onto the items.

Maureen's wooden bottle & letters for her grandaughters
(Note - I have photographed these items in their "wet state" - they will smooth out as they dry)

Gail worked on two wooden birdhouses

I had painted this wooden box the week prior, & then decoupaged it with some cut out tissue flowers 
I am not happy with my box & plan to sand it right back & begin again (sometime !!!)

Late last week The Mr needed a tractor part collected from Tauranga.  I rather quickly volunteered my time to drive across country & pick the part up for him - he is calving at the moment so he is especially busy.

You see I had a "method in my madness"  πŸ˜‰ as I wanted to visit a certain shop over that way that I had come across on the internet

This shop right here !! πŸ’•

The beautiful Shop Counter created & upcycled by Carla
I spent a wonderful hour browsing at all the gorgeous things in this store ... the Store Owner Carla, was just delightful & so helpful & generous with her information.

She was also happy for me to snap some photos.

SOooooo many beautiful things that made me Wish I had a bigger bank balance πŸ˜‰
(& perhaps a trailer !!!)

You can find this wonderful shop's website Here

* Here * on Facebook     
 & *here* on Instagram

And Yes - of course - some purchases came away with me!!

I had been wanting some transfers & a stencil for quite awhile now so I treated myself to these, along with some rice paper (for decoupage) & a small pot of a new paint colour to try.

And this gorgeous upcycled 3-tier tray just might have come Home with me too πŸ’—
I am looking forward to displaying some pretties on it.

While I have been busy lately creating birthday gifts for friends celebrating "special birthdays" my Orders have somewhat piled up on me .... so I made a start last weekend with these candles for my dear friend Shirley.
The containers are Shirley's own & she requested the fragrances Calico & Sandlewood/Musk in them.

With constant winds & rain here today, it is a good crafting day.
Her Royal Highness is in residence by the fire & I am happy about this because . . . . . . it means she is not outdoors bringing in rodents!!!

Have a wonderful rest-of-the-week dear friends,
I shall be back at the weekend with my final Catch Up Post.
Thanks as always, for your visits today,
With much love & friendship,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0x

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Catching Up .............. Post # 1

Greetings dear friends & readers

I have been missing from blogland for over two weeks ... the words & the photos just go around & around in my head & I've been unable to find the time to write anything down.
So I have decided to do another series of Catch Up Posts this coming week, probably three of them 😊

Today is Mother's Day here in New Zealand ... I want to wish all the Mother's out there, be it two or four legged ones, 
A Very Wonderful Day  πŸ’—
(If you manage to stay with me til the end of this post you will see the "very kind & generous gift" that Miss Pippi presented me with this morning)

Quite sometime ago I entered a wee Giveaway over on Raewyn's blog
There were two draws, one for a book & one for some thread -  & I was lucky enough to win the book.

I had quite forgotten about it as Raewyn informed me it had to come all the way from the States - so it was such a wonderful surprise to receive it in the post last week.
Thanks so much Raewyn for the opportunity to enter your generous Giveaway.

In my last Post I wrote about the Winter Wreath Workshop my friend Sally was holding at this amazing Venue *here*.
Last weekend I was fortunate enough to be able to go with my friends Sally & Jane to visit the Venue, while Sally did some prep for her upcoming Workshop

We were lucky enough to be given a tour of the house & the gardens & I rather promptly fell in love with all of it.
Although I think I took about 50 photos, I have just shared a very few with you here
The formal dining room where Sally was to host her workshop

                                            The photo to the right is the scullery

Some of the outdoor areas

The statue is called Guardian of the Garden.  The far right photo is some old pet gravestones in the garden.
We also had a bit of a Girl's Day Out shopping but I will share my purchases with you in another Post.

Last week I stood in my kitchen & made lemon dusters.
This is a recipe from my book The Natural Home by Wendyl Nissen
I had some old cloth nappies which I had purchased from the Op Shop - these make perfect dusters.

Lemon Dusters are simply equal quantities of water & white vinegar + lemon essential Oil,
Soak the dusters in this mixture then squeeze out, roll up into lengths, then roll into a ball - they look a bit like cinnamon scrolls!
I like to put pieces of lemon peel in with them - the fragrance when you take them out of the Jar is just wonderful!
Now that we have started having winter fires, the dust is incredible & these are ideal for giving the mantel a quick wipe over.

Silver Trays that had rust or imperfections in them that wouldn't polish out
I have been painting/upcycling some more projects for the St John's Op Shop - these were done using the 
grey chalkpaint - Quarter Absolute

I really enjoyed doing this corner shelf above but .  .  .  .  

Chalkpaint Voodoo Molly Vintage - Colour Sandstone
.  .  .  .   I did Not enjoy doing the rattan tray above - it took so many coats to get a decent coverage.

Yesterday was my youngest son's birthday - I got up early & made him a chocolate cake as I was going for 
morning tea.
I stopped on my way there & bought a box of smarties to decorate it.
 I cannot believe my son is 34!   Where did those years go to I wonder??!! 

I posted on Instagram last week, how when The Mr comes in from the farm each night, he stands in front of the fire 
& takes his smelly/dirty socks off & tosses them on the mat.
Miss Pippi makes a beeline for them & then spends the rest of the evening rolling around in them & sleeping.
There's just no accounting for taste in some folk πŸ˜‰

And speaking of Her Royal Highness ... here is the Mother's Day gift she so kindly left me this morning under my gardening shoe!
Still alive & moving I might add! πŸ˜–

Thanks So Much for staying with me through this lengthy post dear friends,
I hope the coming week is good & kind to you all,
I shall be back soon with my second Catch Up Post,
With much love & friendship to you All,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0