Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Op-Shop Treasures

Greetings lovely friends & readers

The weeks go by so quickly & here we are in the final week of January already!

I want to teach my grandsons the value & the JOY of op-shopping & buying second hand.

I took Sid along to St John's Op Shop last week as we had a couple of bags to drop off & - as luck would have it - they had a large collection of dinosaurs that had been donated.

Sid & I chose all the above figurines & Jeep for the sum total of $35.00.
(including Dragon book further below)

When you push the orange button on the top of the Jeep the cage doors open & a dinosaur pops out & growls. This was priced at $4.50 ... I let Sid take this one home with him as well as 2 dinosaur figurines that he chose.  (the other figurines I kept here for both Sid & Alec to play with when they come)

Sid's Mum pointed out to me that this crocodile was a Schleich brand.  A quick google search of this same toy & it showed a new price tag of $25.00 ... I paid $3.50 for this one. 

This beautiful Dragonology book was in nearly-new condition - I paid $5 for it & found it on Book Depository for $62.00 !!  I have put this book away to gift to one of my grandsons when they are a bit older.

Whilst at the Op-Shop I found the aluminium pots above for $4 & $6 respectively.  I had an idea for both of them ... I will share the larger pot today but the smaller one has not yet gone to its recipient so I will share that in another post.

I painted it with two coats of chalk paint in the colour Pumice - then applied the remnants of an Iron Orchid designs transfer to the base & the lid.  Then I gave it 2 coats of Annie Sloan clear wax.

I purchased this beautiful pink Begonia on special at my local Mitre 10 & it fit perfectly in the pot.  The friend I am giving it to just loves anything Pink 💗
  I decided I am not going to plant it as she may choose to use the pot for something else.

My friend Gail is having a birthday at the end of this month.  She is really tricky to buy for now as she more or less has everything she wants or needs.  I bought this book awhile ago for her & decided to make her one of the beautiful free bookmarks that Jenny of elefantz designs is so generously sharing throughout this year.

I stitched it on a scrap of pale blue linen (using Cottage Garden thread "Blue Wren") ... & instead of "2022" I stitched Gail's name.  I embellished it with some lace scraps & a piece of treasured Tilda Fabric from the Windy Days collection.

The cotton dish/washcloth knitting continues - I like to knit these at nights when I am tired or perhaps when Sid is watching his Dinosaur programmes on YouTube & sitting still for half an hour ... I like to have something to pick up. 
 * Here * is the free pattern I like to use - knitted on the diagonal - easy peasy.

Yesterday I made myself a new Ironing Board Cover.  Long time readers of my blog will know this is something I like to do as each new year rolls around.  I had 60cms of this lovely Cath Kidston fabric purchased from Mystyle which fit perfectly.  

I always just take the old cover off, lay it on my new fabric & cut around it, then overlock the edges, sew a casing & thread a new piece of elastic through it.  It probably takes me half an hour tops.  I even gave my Iron a clean 😉

Thank you as always for your visits here today dear friends

I first tried to do this blog post on Sunday Evening but you can see by the photo above, how much progress I made on that !!!  😐

Sending much love & friendship to You All,

Love Julie & the furry nuisances ones x0x0x

Sunday, January 16, 2022

A Church Made Of Trees

Greetings lovely friends & readers

Last Sunday my dear friend Sue & I went to Church together - we went to The Tree Church a stunning venue about half an hour from here.  Sue had visited once before but I had never been.   Oh dear friends - it was  Amazing !!

I took about 50 photos in total so I have tried to pick out the best just to give you some idea of this beautiful property.  Believe me dear readers - my photos do Not do it justice.

The approach to the church top left & inside - the altar.

Taken from inside the church looking outwards ... you can see the Iron windows top right.
Although the Tree Church acquired new owners about 18 months ago, it was the realisation of one man's dream - who had the vision to build a church frame from iron & then grow & train trees over the entire shape of it. 

The entire property covers 3 hectares & is planted out in the most amazing garden - I just loved all the structure from the different trees that were planted.  If you click * here * it gives a bit more background about the history of the Tree Church & if you scroll to the bottom of the page there is a beautiful soothing Video to watch showing the Church & Gardens.

I adored the trees in the avenue above left - their trunks looked & felt like paper bark.

Sue said these clipped trees above left reminded her of Dr Seuss trees.

There was an area of flower gardens planted in a cottage garden style as well as a large veggie garden area. It was all immaculate.

Tall sunflowers that reached way up above our heads.

Sue managed a photo of us both inside the Church - I am inclined to chop heads off when I try to take selfies 😉

We spent a good couple of hours there & then we drove over to Cambridge & went to The Podium Cafe where we enjoyed a delicious lunch while chatting & watching the boats & water ski's on Lake Karapiro.  It was such a wonderful days Outing 😊

These are lightweight aluminium horseshoes worn by Race Horses that I cover.

I managed to complete two Orders this past week ... the first was for my friend Jan, who asked me to make a white horseshoe & if possible, to put a gold "50" on it as it was to be presented at a 50th wedding anniversary.

The 2nd Order was for 20 Mothball Sachets for my friend Marie who had an infestation of moths in her Merino Jumpers. Luckily I had all the dried herbs on hand to make these up & only had to purchase the whole cloves.

As school is on holiday here 'til February, Alec came to stay a couple of days.  His first request was "can we craft". 
I cut out a large fabric heart shape & set him to work embellishing it.  Alec loves anything shiny & gold so he was in his element.  He quickly decided he did not wish to learn to sew the things on as yet so we relied on craft glue & the hot glue gun. 

We had a visit to the Park & then the Berry farm to pick raspberries & of course, a berry icecream each 😊

The next day he enjoyed the play dough ... I had a couple of new colours & lots of shape cutters as I had been gifted some new cutters for Christmas.  

I have been trying to blog for at least 3 days now with no success - I thought I would show you this next photo so you might realise how very difficult it is to actually get computer time around here 😉

Thank you as always dear friends, for your visits here today,
Wishing you all a wonderful week ahead - be kind to yourselves & to each other,
With much love & friendship to you All,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Happy New Year Everyone

Greetings lovely friends & readers

Happy Shiny New Year to you All ...  & Welcome to 2022 💙

I've felt so shattered since my return from Mum's - I've had to have Nana Naps each day & certainly slept through the New Years entrance.   The Mr pointed out to me yesterday that it was an incredibly busy lead up to Christmas & now that it is over with, sometimes you just have to rest & re-group.

Each Christmas I usually include a Lego set for the toy content of my Grandsons Stockings. This year Alec's parents informed me that he no longer played with his Lego - but what he was Very Into was Gemstones.

Luckily I was able to go online & buy Gemstones from a variety of sellers, but when they arrived they just looked like a bunch of coloured stones.   I found some voile bags & printed out labels for each set of rocks, then found this pale grey box & was able to make a label for this from some wooden cutouts I found in my craft drawer.

I love this photo above left - you can see the joy on Alec's face when he opens his Gemstone box & in the next pic he is busy yelling "Sid - look at my Gemstones!!" ... however Sid has just opened his new Lego pack & could not care less about any old Gemstones 😊  ... Just precious memories. 

We had a lovely early Christmas celebration on Sunday 19th & I fed them all a traditional Roast Turkey Lunch.

Youngest Grandson Sid with their dog Darcy

                           It's hard to believe this wee rascal turns 5 this coming year & will be off to school.  

 The next day - Monday  - my dear friend Sandy had invited 3 girlfriends to her home for a Christmas Morning Tea. It was so lovely to catch up again as I had not seen one of the girls (Pam) for well over a year.  Sandy is always a wonderful Hostess & she presented us with a delicious morning tea & we were still sat chatting & laughing well after lunchtime !

From left to right,  Bev, Pam, Sandy & myself 😊  ....   the food was simply delicious !!

Everything Sandy does is to exquisite taste & her home was so beautifully decorated for the festive season. 
 I couldn't resist snapping a few photos.

Later that same day The Mr & I travelled over to the City to pay a Christmas visit to Juno & her parents (they were travelling South for Christmas this year). We gave her the table & chair that I revamped in * this post * along with other gifts ... & I took some home-baked treats so we could enjoy a Christmas supper together.

Juno was quite taken with her table & chair & I was delighted when her Mummy told me one of her absolute favorite things is Rabbits.

The next day was my Tuesday-with-Sid,  then on the Wednesday I got up very early & set off on the 4-hour drive down to Mum's.  

I always stop at Stratford for a takeaway coffee & can never resist a quick look in their local Hospice Shop.  I came away with the above items as the books were all $1 each, & I purchased the china because - of course - I needed more vintage china like I need a hole in my head !!😉

I love these photos above - Alec was quite taken with Mum & very affectionate

The Thursday was spent doing errands & tasks for Mum as well as a huge grocery shop.  On Friday I prepared a big finger-food luncheon as we had visitors - eldest son & his family were en-route to Palmerston North & also Mum's younger brother had travelled over to join us for Christmas.

Mums younger brother Rol - top left  ......   Aaron, Sarah, Mum & Alec top right.

The obligatory Family Photos.

Christmas Day itself passed in a complete blur & I forgot to take any photos. But I cooked another Roast Turkey Lunch for Mum, my Uncle & my brother & his wife.  
Very early the next morning I left to return home again, trying to avoid the usual Boxing Day traffic.

I received some lovely books for Christmas - the Joy of Gardening book I purchased for myself from The Mr.  He also gave me a leaf blower which I was most excited about as I love power tools (yes I am strange like that !!) The other books were gifts from my friend Sally.

I returned home to lovely decorations posted from friends across the ditch (Australia).  The candle on the right was gifted from my Stepson & the fragrance is Christmas Lights - pomegranate & fig - just light & pleasant.

Well dear friends - our weather here is scorching & we are in the midst of a heatwave.  Some rain is forecast tomorrow but I won't hold my breath.  I turn the air-con on in the afternoons & these two usually retreat to our bedroom which is nice & cool with the blinds down.
Wishing you all the most wonderful New Year,
Thank you as always - for your visits here today,
With much love & friendship to you all,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x