24 September 2010

place marker

the Show comes to town

Spinning and helter skeltering is going on a-plenty here.

There's been the ripping out of the hideous old chipboard and yolk yellow laminate laundry to make way for the installation of a new clean configuration of cupboards, shelves and drawers, complete with shiny taps that actually turn on (and off).

There's been the hurried purchase of tiles yesterday for collection today and installation next week, followed by the unpacking of the bathroom ready for it to be likewise transformed into something new and clean. O, royal blue laminate and faux [peeling] gold taps begone. Begone, I say!

There's been the traditional and vehement Cursing of the Tradesman who was supposed to phone on Wednesday turn up on Thursday no Friday ok Monday well 8.00 am Tuesday definitely promisetrulyswearpinkypromisedinkydi finally showing up at 10.15 am Tuesday. And as I type he is now two hours and ten minutes late for tonight's appointment in which we planned to go over some final bathroom related details.*

There's been the inventory of the family camping gear, ready for the upcoming outdoor desert experience.

There's been a spot of theatre (Bell Shakespeare's production of Twelfth Night, highly recommended and now on its way to Queensland for any readers up there).

There's been frenzied cello practise, both at the group lesson and a get together of the four of us after our teacher announced we will be performing at the school's Spring Fair in a few weeks time (having had a grand total of 8 lessons all up and not feeling terribly confident, and all) (oh and by the way I am totally the dunce of The Mighty Cellos, as the others can all read music and thus have a head start while my brain is still trying to compute what the little black dots mean and how that relates to the placement of my fingers on the cello - and being the dunce of a group is a confronting and uncomfortable experience I am discovering, no matter how understanding and supportive my fellow cellists are).

And there's been the cramming in of all sorts of errands and chores into my days off while simultaneously trying to give the boys some entertainment seeing as it's school holidays here. This means taking the car to be serviced at a garage that handily has a cinema two doors away, sending them in to watch a movie while I grab a haircut and do the grocery shopping before collecting kids and car and racing off to the next errand.

I tell you, my brain is spinning. And we're not even going to The Show this year. Just read about it from two years ago and pretend, ok?

(Photo is the next installment in my version of The Alice Project, and of course as is now revealed, is located at the Showgrounds).

* Ok, he's now two and a half hours late. Stoopid tradesman.

17 September 2010

weekend refreshment


Craft weekend was, with the exception of the floods (and a couple of related nerve-wracking moments such as roads closing, the studio leaking, and all the lights going off) and the demise of the stork's bum, magnificent as usual. We had a delightful mix of old hands and newbies along for the ride, and the usual staples of laughter, relaxation, truly sublime food, massage, a bit o' craftin, and fabulous company were had. One of my favourite parts of craft weekends are the evenings spent knitting and nattering by the fire, fuelled by wine and home baked goodies; I think I knitted more this time than I ever have before and managed to come home with several new baby hats all ready for various imminent arrivals. Mission accomplished in the most enjoyable way possible.

blue skies over the hills

I haven't yet photographed what I made - a pair of flannelette pj bottoms from a vintage floral sheet, the baby hats, a tiny stork hat (I did photograph that one and ravelled it - priorities, people), some cutting and piecing of blue squares for my next quilt, and the successful pinning of a [different] quilt sandwich so it's all ready for some nights of peaceful handquilting by the fire. (Big shout out to Kate for the provision of a packet of safety pins when I realised that Son #2 had emptied my sewing tin of all its safety pins for the punk party he was attending on the Saturday night).

magda on the phone

The weather was quite a feature of this weekend; the wildest storms seen in a long time, with driving torrential rain for hours and hours on end, all through the night and all day long the next day. The road north of Lancefield was closed, the road south has some impressive new potholes, and one distressed damsel's car had to be pulled out of a bog late in the night by a knight in fluoro armour (the man in the little yellow RACV van) who showed up in the midst of the tempest to rescue her.

tania's cottons

The sun came out on Sunday finally, the floodwaters receded slightly and we tried to cram a weekend's photo opportunities into a few hours.

daffs with floral quilt behind

I always come home from our craft weekends refreshed rather than depleted despite the late nights, filled with gratitude (and renewed affection) for my family who wave me off with love and support, and deep thankfulness to have found a place like Sewjourn (thank you Jan, for finding my blog all those years ago and suggesting we might like to try Sewjourn when the renovations were finished) and a wonderful community of women with which to share it.

in the studio

Thanks to Janet, Caroline, Kate, Felicity, Magda, Gill, Tania and Kaye for a lovely lovely weekend of friendship, laughter and inspiration. Here's to many more.


(More photos here).

15 September 2010

the ballad of the bottomless bird

Legend has it that the Sewjourn Stork ...

was feeling a little chilly, what with being so far away from his tropical native lands* and the thought of a rural Victorian winter approaching.

the stork all set for winter

And so, once upon a time in the autumn, someone kindly made him some bright and snazzy leggings.

But he was still a wee bit chilly.

And so another thoughtful soul made him a scarf.

Photo credit: Tinniegirl

The Stork was happy now, yes?

Um. Not quite. The Stork realised that part of his problem was a rumbly tummy. And lo, in the midst of the long hard winter he received the gift of a fish.

Photo credit: Jodie

But the Stork was not yet satisfied. The harsh winter winds of Lancefield troubled his delicate constitution and he demanded of the people a woolly hat. Preferably one that matched his scarf.

tiny aviators helmet
Aviator's helmet, with pin for scale

And definitely one appropriate for a now-grounded flying hero, long retired from the days of migration yore.

stork, with cactus leaning on him

Clothed and fed, the Stork would be content now, thought the people.

And so, the people turned their evil lust for yarnbombing creativity focus elsewhere.

cactus cosy
Note striking similarity of yarn and design feature stripes to that of the leggings ...)

But the Stork's discontent mixed now with Cactus Envy and as his rage grew ever stronger he called upon a Tempest to strike down upon the land. O, the winds howled, the rains lashed the land in horizontal needles of unbridled fury and the flood waters rose until the people wept and gnashed their teeth and it all made the front page of The Age.

And on the Sabbath the people awoke to find ...

the day the bottom fell out

... that the bottom had fallen out of the world stork.

(And the cactus bed really really needed weeding).

Sorry Jan.

* I have no idea really, just work with me ok?

Edited to add: the Aviator's Flying Helmet has been ravelled. Naturally.