Sunday, 29 May 2016

Time Flies When You're Super Busy!!

Hello! Hello!! I'm still alive ... I think!!! :0) Life just seems to have been so darn BUSY this month and I seem to have spent a lot of time chasing my tail. There's so much that I need to catch you up on that I almost don't know where to start. So ... I'll just back-track and start at the very beginning ... a very good place to start!! :0) This could be a long one, so Chookyblue ... you'd better grab yourself a cuppa. :0)

First exciting update to share with you is ... MY SEWING ROOM HAS BEEN MADE OVER!!! WOO! HOO!! Can you tell that I'm just a WEE bit excited about that?! Tee! Hee! Hee! Now when we first bought our house, it had been painted "to sell" ... ie. it was all very NEUTRAL. And anyone who knows me knows that I am a COLOUR freak, so we planned right from the start to "DE-NEUTRAL-ise" most rooms. :0) The latest project was the sewing room. For some reason, I forgot to take "Before" photos - oops! So I'll just get on with sharing how it looks now. :0)

This is what you see when you stand in the doorway ...

... and with a little turn to the left. I'm LOVING the warm cornflower blue colour ... it's a shade lighter than my old sewing room in our other house and everything looks so fresh with the big splashes of white furniture and pops of red and blue.

Do you see that bookcase ... that bottom shelf is all of the craft magazines that I kept from my big clean up I told you about a month or so ago ... mostly "Homespun" mags, but a few others made the cut too. LOVE my mad bunny quilt I bought from designing buddy Toni Alexander of the Red Boot Quilt Co. (And there's some VERY exciting news to share about Toni in another post!!)

This cool vintage school desk is now my computer desk ... since my Beloved Geek Boy kicked me off our big shared desk in the office ... he needs more room now that he's working more from home ... APPARENTLY?!!!! :0) The top lifts up and my cordless keyboard and mouse can hide in there.

Here's my sewing desk with my fabric stash sorted into colour groups in the baskets above it. (Yes ... that IS my entire stash! :0) ) And my recently shabby-chic-ed hutch ...

So you see how NEAT that sewing desk is at the moment?! Tee! Hee! Hee!

I LOVE this hutch and how it's come up. The chalk paint from Canterbury Blue is EXACTLY what I wanted. And the finishing touch added just this week ...

... pretty sapphire blue glass knobs ... also from Canterbury Blue ... a one-stop-make-over-shop! :0) Thanks SOOOOO much to Juliana for helping me make my hutch SHINE!! If you're looking for a great place to find all you need to add some shabby chic shine to a project, I can't recommend Juliana's Canterbury Blue highly enough ... pop over HERE to see all the goodies she has on hand in her new store. :0) 

(PS. This is not a paid-for plug ... I just LOOOOOOVE Juliana's paint, finishing bits and friendly, helpful service!!)

... and my hutch lets me display some of my ever-growing collection of pretties in my sewing space to help inspire me.

Just in case we have another guest ... or for a quiet spot to chill out with a craft mag ... or a FABULOUS new craft book ...


 I love how the warm blue shows off my pretties ... my pretty bunting, my inspiration/memory board and a sweet stitchery wall hanging gifted to me by my GORGEOUS OPAM Partner-In-Crime Sweet Peg. My sewing room is full of lovely things I've collected or have been gifted to me by friends and family who love me and know just what will make me smile ... I'm feeling pretty darn BLESSED when I hang out in there! :0) And a huge thank you to my painting partner ... one of the most patient men on the planet! Tee! Hee! Hee! ... my Beloved Geek Boy. :0)

So ... instalment one of me catching you up on my busy month. And speaking of the month coming to an end ... OPAMers ... have you updated your sidebar list of finished and emailed your tally total to me of Sweet Peg? Well ... get hopping!! The month is almost over! :0)

Right ... I'm off to make myself a cuppa and watch Midsomer Murder ... hope you've had a great weekend and have something equally relaxing planned for the tail end of it. :0) I'll be back with the next instalment in the Meares' Madhouse mayhem. :0) Til next time ...


Sunday, 15 May 2016

Foodie Festival Fun!!

Hello everyone out there in blogland! Sorry to have been a bit absent again ... this crazy head cold is just hanging on and draining the ol' energy banks, so there hasn't been much happening here. But since today was a perfect Autumn day, we decided to head off on a little outing.

See? Lovely autumn day complete with gorgeous bronze leaves. :0) Our outing was to the annual Hampton Food Festival, just a five minute drive up the road. It's a lovely day of showcasing local produce ... so wonderful to have all those delicious foodie treasures in one spot. :0) First stop ...

... DEEEEEEEEELICIOUS vanilla bean ice cream with raspberry and blueberry coolie from locally grown raspberries and blueberries.

My Beloved Geek Boy couldn't wait to tuck into the blueberry coolie. :0) I confess my raspberry treat didn't last long either! Tee! Hee! Hee! Thus fortified, we continued to wander around until we discovered ...

... Some yummy Greek salt and feta balls ... YIASOU! :0) We had to keep our strength up to keep exploring, right?! :0) Aparently there was some Greek dancing at that stall later in the day ... think I'm glad we missed that one, though!! :0)

So, after a lovely time wandering, exploring and soaking up the delicious autumn sun we took ourselves off home to enjoy a late lunch picnic with our gathered goodies ...

A cheese platter, some marinated olives, some ewe-gurt (yogurt made from sheep milk) and some toasted olive and herb foccasia. YUMMO!! We love these kind of lunches and it's even nicer when the tasty treaties support local producers. Can't wait for next year's picnic! :0)

I hope you've all had a relaxing weekend with some tasty treaties. :0) I'm planning to do a bit of sketching and tracing this week to prepare for a girly weekend of stitching next weekend, so hopefully I'll have some stitching to share with you soon. And hopefully my energy will come back soon too. :0) Have a fantastic week. Til next time ...



Sunday, 8 May 2016

Mothers' Day & OPAM Winner!!

Hello to you all out there in blogland on this Mothers' Day Sunday ... and a special hello to all of you who are Mums ... including the Mums of fur-babies, cos they count, too. :0)

Things here have been pretty low-key, with a bit of Secret Squirrel sewing and not much else. My Beloved Geek Boy is finding his feet in his new job and I'm still doing battle with the nasty head cold bug that ambushed me ... I'm really hoping it gets gone soon, cos I'm over stuffy noses, sore throats and asthma flare-ups. GRRRR!!

However, since today IS indeed a special day, I hit the kitchen to prepare a special lunch for my Mum. We're fortunate enough to catch up with Mum and Dad most weekends when they have lunch with us after attending church in the country town near us, but I wanted to make today a little more special for Mothers' Day ...

Since it was a lovely, mild autumn day we sat out on our verandah and enjoyed lovely tender steak from a local butcher topped with QLD prawns in a garlic and cream sauce, accompanied by home made potato salad and some crispy fresh salad. Here's Mum ready to tuck in ... you can see from Dad's plate that he's a meat and potatoes kind of bloke! Tee! Hee! Hee! This feast was washed down with sparkling apple juice and followed by ...

Pavlova ... YUMMO!! :0)  You can see Dad's not too sure about Mum being given a big sharp knife! Tee! Hee! Hee! I confess that the pavlova was a bought base, but I chopped up the fruit in the centre and whipped the cream topping it, so that should count for something, right?! :0) And that's home grown passion fruit on top. Can I tell you ... we all waddled away from the table and there MAY have been some post-lunch kindy-kips taken to digest our feast! :0) Mum's gifties were of the plant variety, as she loves to potter in the garden. 

I have to say that not only do I love my Mum dearly, she's one of my heroes. She is so generous with her time and caring of those around her ... growing up I watched her cook meals for people who were unwell or just home from hospital stays, send cards and gifts to people who needed a little cheer-up boost, invite folks with no family to meals for special occasions so they weren't alone and our house was like grand central station with family and friends coming and going, knowing they were always welcome and that there was a spare bed if they needed it. I've always said that if I turn out to be HALF the woman my Mum is, I'll be doing pretty darn well! :0) 


So ... after the post-feast kindy-kips and Mum and Dad heading off home, I realised it was my turn to do the random prize draw for OPAM. OOPS! I keep losing days! :0) So, for April we had ...


WOO! HOO!! Well done to everyone who had a part to play in that tally. Isn't it incredibly satisfying to look back at our finishes list and see how that tally grows month by month? And to those of you who didn't get to add to your tally, but made some good progress on long-term projects or just took a bit of time out to read inspiring magazines, books, blogs or Pinterest to recharge your creative batteries ... well done to you, too, for remembering to take some time out just for YOU. When life is busy we need to protect those little pockets of "ME" time to catch our breath, recharge and re-energise before diving back into life's crazy whirlwind. :0)

Having done the random draw, the name bouncing up was ...

Congratulations Inger! Please email me with your snail mail address and I'll pop a little something in the mail for you soon. A big thank you to all of you who emailed your finishes to me and my GORGEOUS Partner-In-Crime Sweet Peg this month ... it is a big help to us! :0)

That's about it from me for today, but I promise to be back soon with some exciting photos of some BIG CHANGES that have happened behind the scenes here at the Meares' Madhouse ... I wonder if you can guess what has been happening??? :0) For now, though, I'm off to have a shower and snuggle into my dagging-around-the-house clothes, then curl up under my blankie with a bowl of hot soup to enjoy a quiet evening with my Sweetie before we're into a very hectic new week. Hope you've has a lovely weekend and may your week be full of random kindnesses ... both received and given! :0) Til next time ...



Wednesday, 4 May 2016

A Quick Email Issue!

Just a popping back in with a quick note about email. A few of you have said you've had problems getting emails through to me ... and I think I've worked out the problem.

My Beloved Geek Boy changed the server that my emails are routed through when he changed jobs, as it had been coming through his old workplace' server. This DOESN'T change my email ADDRESS, it is still ...

HOWEVER ... if you've tried to email me by clicking on "REPLY" from an older email I may have sent you, this may be trying to send it through the old server ... which won't work. So ... if you HAVE experienced any problems trying to email me please double-check that you're sending to the address.

Don't you just LOVE how computers SIMPLIFY our lives?!?!?!?! :0) Til next time ...




That's what's happened to me ... I've been AMBUSHED! ... by a nasty cold bug. BLECH!!

So, not much happening here at the moment. I've been laying low and trying to recuperate ... SIGH!!

Feeling somewhat under the weather also means that I'm running somewhat behind on the blog hopping for OPAM this month ... not many emailed tallies have arrived in my email in box, so it will take me a little while to hop around. Stay tuned for the prize draw in the next few days.

Hope all of you are feeling less snuffly and clogged up than I am at the moment and that you're finding some time to be creative. I promise to be back soon to show you the result of some of my Secret Squirrel sewing, but right now I think I'm off to drown my sorrows in a hot cup of tea. Til next time ...



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