Sunday, 25 June 2017

A Perfect Way To Enjoy A Winter Day!

Those of you who have been popping in to visit me for a while now will be well aware that I rarely have good things to say about winter, but today on our 'hill' it was a very pretty, unseasonably warm winter day ... Just right for an outdoor baby shower. (Does anyone know WHY it's called a baby 'shower'??? Just wondering! )

The Stupendous Steph from the Quilters Angel is excitedly expecting her first bub & invited some of her 'tribe' to join her to celebrate the impending arrival. Now with Steph & her Mum the Marvellous Marion organising things, you just KNOW everything was going to be GORGEOUS!! :0)

Pretty bunting, lovely fresh roses delicious treats ... & lots of pink ... Does that give you a wee clue as to what Steph is expecting?!?! :0) And for a special occasion you need a special cake ...

Just ... WOW!! And it tasted just as good. :0) And it was lovely to see three generations of wonderful women celebrating the impending arrival of a fourth generation ...

... Steph, Marion & Marion's Mum Ethol. Big congrats to Steph & her Sweetie ... I think this new addition will be VERY spoilt ... & very, very BLESSED to be part of this fabulous family. And Steph is sure to get some giggles from the list of suggested baby names put forward & the pieces of 'useful' advice. :0) Thanks Steph & Marion for sharing this special time!

Not much else happening here at the moment, though I managed to shake off my cold ... Not sure if it was the Indiana Jones/stitching day or the olive leaf that did the trick. :0) I hope you've had a good weekend & that your week is fantastic. Til next time ...




Saturday, 17 June 2017

On A Grey Saturday!

It's Saturday, it's overcast & showery, it's cold (though not quite as cold as it was last week), I've been ambushed by a head cold ... So what's a girl to do?

Why ... She snuggles under her flannel blankie with some stitching & indulges in an Indianna Jones marathon. :0)

What's YOUR favourite movie/series to keep you company on a grey day when you're feeling a bit icky?

Whatever you're up to I hope you're enjoying your Saturday. Til next time ...




Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Saying Goodbye Is Hard!

I know I've been a bit quiet in the last couple of weeks, but it's been a bit of a rough time for us. You see, we had the very difficult task of saying goodbye to my gorgeous Grandma & although I wanted to let you all know, it's been hard to find the words ... Harder still for my heart to believe them. A heartfelt THANK YOU to all of you who've sent well-wishes, condolences & have kept checking in on me to see how I'm traveling. Your thoughts, prayers & care have been a comfort during a sad time.

My Beloved Geek Boy & I made the sad trip to Bundaberg last Friday to say our goodbyes to Grandma in a service that, on her instructions, included lots of stories & happy memories from her family & friends. And as strange as it might sound, there was lots of laughter. Exactly as Grandma wanted. :0)

Grandma was 94 and had lived a full & happy life ... Not an EASY life, though. On finishing school Grandma undertook her nursing training in Mackay, where she became good friends with another girl ... Who introduced her to my Gramps ...

Together they had two children ... Mum & her brother ... Then Grandma was diagnosed with tuberculosis. Mum & my uncle lived with family members for two years while Grandma underwent intense experimental treatment ... Which thankfully was successful. They then had two more children & many happy years of marriage.

Gramps passed more than 20 years ago & although Grandma missed him, she had many wonderful friends around her at the retirement village they'd moved to only a year or so before. Her life was jam-packed with family, friends, outings & travel. One of the lovely ladies who spoke to me after Grandm's service was the owner of the bus company Grandma did many trips with & she said her lasting memory of Edna was that she always had a funny story or joke to share. What a lovely way to be remembered! :0)

So many of my childhood memories are tied to the times spent at Grandma & Gramps' place, firstly at the Emerald Pool which they managed for some years & later at Clairview Beach near Mackay where they retired. There was always a crowd of people ... Family, friends & anyone who looked like they needed some company & a good meal. It seemed the walls of their home were elastic, because there was always room for one more.

And there was always LOTS of laughter! Nobody believes me when I say that I'm the shy, quiet one of the family ... Until they meet the rest of my family! :0) And it all started with Grandma.

I was fortunate to spend a lot of time with Grandma over the years & was especially glad that I was able to spend her last birthday with her ...

I also felt very blessed to say goodbye to Grandma surrounded by all of the family, except one cousin from Western Australia who was unable to travel due to illness. Our 'mob', as Grandma used to call it, gathered from five different states & from all corners of Queensland to farewell her. There were many tears, but I truly think they were far outweighed by the stories & laughter, shared by those who knew & loved Grandma most. A fitting tribute to a life well-lived, I think.

And it was a reminder to be grateful for each day we're given, whether it brings challenges or joy; to grab hold of life & squeeze out every drop; to MAKE the time to spend with family & friends ... Who really don't care if your house isn't picture perfect or if you're not looking your glamorous best! ... And most importantly tell your loved ones at EVERY opportunity how precious they are to you. Hopefully that way when our time is up, people will have many memories of our adventures, our laughter & our love for them & be able to say, as we can of Grandma, that we had a life well-lived.

Til next time ...






Tuesday, 6 June 2017

A Quick OPAM Catch Up!

Hello to you all in blogland ... I hope your week is off to a great start. I have to say our week got off to a rough start, but I'll share more about that another time.

Today's post is a quick pop-in to do an OPAM update ... and draw this month's winner, of course. :0) A big thank you to all of you who emailed me or my GORGEOUS Partner-In-Crime Sweet Peg with your tallies for May. It's always a great help to Sweet Peg and I. The rest of the blog hopping has now  been finalised and I have to say, there was a VERY impressive array of projects finished and worked on ... as always. Well done to all of you clever clogs creators. :0) For the month of May there was a total of ...

239 Finishes!

WOO! HOO! What a great total! Lots of space being cleared in sewing room cupboards, obviously! Tee! Hee! Hee! And the winner of the random draw is ...

Congratulations Anne Marie! If you'd like to email me your snail mail address, I'll pop a little something in the mail for you. Kirsten, I haven't forgotten your prize ... it's just been a bit of a disrupted couple of months in the Meares' Madhouse. I'll pop it in the mail soon, I promise.

We're travelling for a family event this weekend, so I'm not sure when I'll be back to visit with you all. Enjoy the rest of your week and I hope your weekend includes some time doing something you love with people you love. Til next time ...



Friday, 2 June 2017

Moose Without Squirrel!

Do you remember these two characters from your childhood cartoon watching days? "Hey Rocky! Watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat." :0) And ...

... These two, who were often heard to say, "Get moose & squirrel!" Well ... Today I got moose ... Without squirrel. :0)

My lovely blogging buddy Toni from the Red Boot Quilt Co. sent me a little surprise ... A sweet limited edition Henry the moose pin ... Isn't it cool?! :0) Thanks Toni! These fab pins are prizes for Toni' birthday club draws ... & to spoil her friends. Tee! Hee! Hee! Pop over to Toni's blog to see better pics of Henry ... As well as a peek at Toni's latest fun, cheerful quilt design ... It's a beauty & a favourite of this Pisces gal! :0)

I'm off to play with fabric ... Still enjoying my day off! Til next time ...






A 'Proper' Day Off!!

In my grown up job, I work Monday to Thursday & have Friday as my 'day off', but I have to say, Friday's are rarely a REAL 'day off' ... They're usually full of running errands, making appointments that don't fit between work hours & the usual household chores of cleaning & washing clothes. Well ... Today, for the first time in ages ... I'm having a "PROPER" day off. :0)

When my Beloved Geek Boy woke me to say goodbye as he headed off to work, I thought about getting up, but had a rip-roaring headache, so decided to snuggle back down in my cosy double-doona nest & try to sleep off the headache. Two hours later I surfaced again ... Headache gone! YAY! So I decided I was ready to face the day.

It was too late to do any washing ... Sunlight on the washing line hours are limited in winter with all of our big trees & changed angle of the sun ... So I decided to treat myself to a lazy day, starting with a yummy brunch.

MMMMMMMMMMM!! Mashed avocado & fetta on olive sourdough with poached eggs & a good strong mug of plunger coffee. Who needs to go out in the cold to some hipster coffee shop! :0P I then enjoyed a cruise around what my buddy Chookyblue refers to as "the dark side" ... Facebook. :0) ... I'm now checking in with you, my blogging buddies ... & this afternoon I'm going to spend some time playing with fabric, followed by an early HOT shower (after our solar hot water booster threw a small fit earlier in the week, GB found & fixed the problem so our water is again hot rather than luke warm) & enjoy a simple steak & salad dinner with my Sweetie in front of a yet-to-be-decided movie. Now THAT is what I call a "PROPER" day off. :0) What's YOUR definition of a proper day off?? I'd love to know, cos we're all different. :0)

It's the perfect weather to have some time at home at the moment. Yesterday was the first day of winter & boy did it hit with a bang!

This was the temperature in my office when I arrived at work!! BRRRRR!! See why I complain about the cold?!? The office I share with my boss is a 'donger' that was put in place as a temporary office ... About 15 years ago! :0P It has no lining or insulation so is sweltering in summer & an icebox in winter. I'm so NOT looking forward to the next couple of months! SIGH!

Now, the first day of winter also means we're into a new month, so OPAMers ... Have you updated your sidebar lists & emailed your tally for May to me or my GORGEOUS Partner-in-Crime Sweet Peg? Well ... Get hopping! :0) We'll be doing our round up & blog hopping in the next few days. Thanks to those of you who have already emailed ... Much appreciated. :0)

Right ... I think that the next thing on my "Proper" day off agenda is ... Another cuppa! :0) I bet that doesn't surprise you! Tee! Hee! Hee! Whatever you're up to today, I hope you enjoy it & that your weekend is full of fun stuff. Those of you live in the Southern Hemisphere struggling to come to terms with winter, stay warm, & my friends in the north, I hope you enjoy the coming warmth. Til next time ...





Friday, 26 May 2017

Weekend Catch Up!!

SHEESH! Here I am, just catching up on what happened LAST weekend & THIS weekend is breathing down my neck! Mind you, the weekend is always welcome, I just find myself wondering what the heck happened to the week in between! :0)

So ... Last weekend was the annual Hampton Food & Art Festival. Can I say, for a little passing-through, blink-and-you'll-miss-it spot on the map, Hampton really knows how to put on a show! If you're in the area next year, I'd recommend a visit ... Especially if you're a bit of a fan of fresh, locally owned/grown/produced food & drink. Did I mention there are quite a few wineries in this region?! :0)

Having been to the festival a couple of times now, we knew to wear our walking shoes cos parking is a bit of an issue ... But that gave us a good excuse to sample more yummy foodie treats ... We'd just walk off the calories getting back to the car ... As long as we walked back & forth several times! Tee! Hee! Hee!

After a quick lap around to scope out tasty treats, we popped into the art marquee. One of the guys I work with had entered a piece that I wanted to see in person ... & was chuffed to find he'd received a highly commended! :0)

Then it was time to sample some food. My Beloved Geek Boy was fighting a nasty head cold so wasn't his usual cheerful self & plopped himself in a relatively quiet spot to gobble his lunch & listen to the relaxing jazz music being played live while I contemplated further ...

Oops! He'd gobbled all of the Greek deep fried fetta balls before I got back. Apparently they were pretty tasty. :0) And after being thoroughly entertained by the interplay between family members on the Transylvanian food stand, I enjoyed ...

Grilled Transylvanian stuffed bread. It was a bit like naan bread stuffed with cheese, bacon, mushrooms & spinach then grilled on a barbecue plate. YUMMO!! Then of course, we needed a sweetie treatie. :0)

MMMMMMMMM ... Home made ice cream with fresh raspberry coulee. DEEEEEELICIOUS!! And GB had ...

... Fresh blueberry sauce. Fruit & dairy products are good for you, right?!?! Tee! Hee! Hee! By that stage GB's cold had him ready to head home, so we retraced our steps to stock up on tasty treats for our Sunday supper & toodled back to the car ... Managing to burn the calories in the first mouthful of ice cream we'd taken! :0P And later with our feet up in front of the tele we enjoyed ...

... Locally grown olives, locally produced soft cheeses, some crispy rice crackers & an adult beverage. THAT'S what weekends SHOULD be like. :0)

As I said, the rest of the week has gone by in a blur, with not much sewing being done as the month creeps toward its close ... Which is why OPAMers should be starting to update their sidebar lists & getting ready to email their month's tally to me or my GORGEOUS Partner-In-Crime Sweet Peg. Only a few days left until winter begins ... DARN IT!! & the weather forecasters are cheerfully telling us winter temperatures will kick in immediately! SIGH! This hot weather chick is ready to fly north for the winter!!

I hope you've had a great week & that you have some fun stuff planned for the weekend. I think grown up chores & playing catch up are on my agenda. Good thing tonight's Friday Night Sit N Stitch is adding a bright spot. :0) Til next time ...








Saturday, 20 May 2017

Twenty-one ... AGAIN!

Well ... It sure is a weekend of socialising for me this week. Yesterday a blogging buddies catchup & today a 'recycled 21st' party. :0) 

One of our Friday Night gals, Julie, said she got to a particular age (she didn't say & we didn't ask!) & then started counting backwards. Well, this week she was 21 ... AGAIN! :0) And of course that called for a party ... Or at least a lunch gathering.

Here's the birthday girl, complete with inflatable party crown. :0) And of course there was cake ...

... And candles. Action shot of Julie's candle-blowing skills. :0) And there were gifties ...

I think this is the shortest amount of time I've ever taken to design & make a new project! I started playing with sketches last night at about 7pm & finished stitching the binding down as my lift was pulling into the driveway this morning at 11:30am! Nothing like a tight deadline to motivate one! :0) 

Here's a closer look at the little hanging. I wanted to incorporate a key, since it was a "21st" giftie, but wanted it to have a bit more meaning, so incorporated the word "Friends" into the shank of the key & wrote the explanation on the back ... 

"Friends are the key to a happy life."

Thankfully, Julie loved it. :0) And Julie was giving out gifties as well ...

Cute giftie bags that Julie & her daughter made & inside was some yummy chocolates, a fat 1/4 & a cute light-flashy-hangy-thingy ... That's the technical name, of course! :0P You've probably guessed that I forgot to take a photo of the goodies. :0)

Big thanks to Julie for sharing your 'recycled 21st' with us ... And may there be many more birthdays so you can finish counting down, then count back up to 21 again. :0)

I'd like to say that tomorrow will be a quiet stay-at-home day to balance out the last two days of socialising ... But it won't be! :0) I'll check in with more pics ... Unless I end up all socialised-out. Tee! Hee! Hee!

Til next time ...








Friday, 19 May 2017

Bloggers ROCK!

 I MIGHT have met up with some blogging buddies for brunch (sounds positively posh, doesn't it?!?!) at the Park House Cafe in Toowoomba today. PERHAPS there was a BIT of chatting & laughing.

And MAYBE we all piled into the Fabulous Fiona's cosy little car for a mini patchwork shop hop. And I MAY have adopted a FEW pieces of fabric ... To give them a good home, you understand! :0)

UNLESS ... You're talking to my Beloved Geek Boy ... And then it's all rumour & innuendo & a big fat fib!!! Tee! Hee! Hee!

So much fun to catch up Fiona, Chookyblue, Susan & Maree! Thanks for a fun day ... When none of us spent ANY money! :0)

Til next time ...




Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Some Sewing At Last!

Hello to you all out there in blogland. I hope you're all well and enjoying your week so far. Life here at the Meares' Madhouse is still a wee bit unsettled. Grandma is improving - thank you all for your lovely messages wishing Grandma well and checking up on us ... your friendship and concern is so VERY much appreciated! :0) We made another quick trip up to Bundy again on the weekend to see Grandma and bring Mum home. There's definitely some progress happening with Grandma, but she's got a bit of a ways to go before she's back to her fighting-fit self. Good thing she's a "tough old bird" in her own words. :0)

In amongst the trips to Bundy and sqishing our grown up chores into shorter amounts of time, there hasn't been a lot of time for sewing, but I did manage to have some quality time with my trusty Husky last Friday to work on a new quilt design. In fact, I've made TWO versions of it, as one will be a giftie for nephew number three and the second version for the pattern sample ... as soon as I write some instructions ... GROAN!!!

The first version has been off to my amazing Quilting Fairy the Fabulous Fiona and I'm part way through sewing down the binding. Version two is currently visiting Fiona's quilting cave ... can't wait to get it back! Fiona always does such an AMAZING job of bringing my quilts to life!! :0) OK ... so what have I been working on? Here's a peek ...

My what big teeth you have, my dear! :0) Raw edge applique is so much fun to play with. And the finished top for the pattern sample ...

Ta Da! "Dinosaurs Go RAAAH!" This quilt was inspired by my brother's three boys and their love of dinosaurs. I remember having a phone conversation with my brother and he was telling me about a recent visit to the museum ... he said the boys liked the dinosaurs best. Suddenly, in the background there came a little (or not so little!) voice saying, "RAAH!!" My brother's response was, "Yes, dinosaurs go 'RAAAH'!" And so the quilt name. :0) Stay tuned on when the pattern is available ... after the instructions are written ... GROAN! :0)

No other sewing has happened, but I'm pretty happy with what I've managed to acheive ... considering. ;0) I hope your weekend was productive, too, and that your week is off to a great start. I'm off to try to catch up on some sleep ... I've got another busy weekend coming up ... I promise to report back. :0) Til next time ...



Sunday, 7 May 2017

A Week To Forget!

Just popping in for a quick visit before I keep a long overdue, much needed date with my pillow. 

We've had a "week to forget" here at the Meares' Madhouse. It started with a horrible phone call to say my lovely Grandma was not doing well and any family who were able, were encouraged by her Dr to gather. So random items were thrown in an overnight bag and we headed for Bundaberg. It was probably the longest trip ever!

THANKFULLY ... when we arrived, Grandma had rallied but it has been a week of ups and downs as she improved, slid backwards, seemed to have developed severe dementia, was finally diagnosed with a raging urinary infection that was causing a lot of the problems. The good news is, she seems to be mostly moving forward in her recovery now, but she sure has given us some scares.

Throw in several short weeks and we're feeling a bit scrambled around here. Needless to say ... not much sewing has happened this week. Hopefully this coming week will be a wee bit calmer all round and more condusive to creativity. To everyone who has commented on blog posts recently or emailed OPAM finishes through to me ... I have received them ... thank you! :0) I just haven't had much time at home to reply. I'm hoping I'll get to play catch up, but hope you'll forgive me if I don't.

Thank you to all of you for your well-wishes for Grandma ... I'm sure the prayers on her behalf and having family around her helped pull her through. And thank you for your care and concern for me too ... I've made such lovely, caring friends through blogging. :0)

Right ... off to keep that pillow date. I promise to share some sewing photos soon. Enjoy your week and make sure you take the time to tell your loved ones how much you love them. Til next time ...



Sunday, 30 April 2017

Another Try!!

I know it seems like forever since I posted, but over the last two weeks I've written five posts ... It's just that none made it to the blog ... SIGH!! A couple were somehow erased before I could save or post them, a couple went to the wrong blog (sorry Chookyblue!) and the last try said it posted ... But it never showed up on my blog, so goodness knows where it ended up!

I confess that after the last mishap, I threw up my hands in disgust & defeat & SULKED! :0) Then life got a bit crazier than usual & blogging went on the back burner. Today I thought I'd give it one more shot before resigning myself to having to post only from my laptop rather than the convenience of my iPad. Fingers crossed! :0)

I can't quite bring myself to write about our Easter adventures for the sixth time, but thought I'd share some pics of an actual sewing finish - yay me! :0) The life stuff that happened last week was my 94 year old Grandma having a fall which broke her leg & hip. Thankfully, she moved into supported living in December so a nurse found her pretty quickly & got her off to hospital. 

Here's Grandma & my aunt having a celebratory birthday drink back in March.  So, after her fall, Mum & Dad did a quick reshuffle of commitments, packed their bags & headed to Bundaberg to be with Grandma. She has since undergone surgery to pin the damaged leg & faces a pretty lengthy hospital stay, so I wanted to send something special with Mum to cheer Grandma up a bit & maybe help her stay be a little more comfortable. So, I made her a new peanut pillow ...

Here it is sitting on our bed ...

It's made from some pretty pink floral fabric that was tucked away in my stash. As well as making a nice giftie for Grandma, it's also a finish for my OPAM tally. I've done quite a bit of sewing this month, but not complete finishes, so it was good to add a finish. OPAMers, we've run out of another month, so please remember to update your sidebar lists & email your tallies to me or my GORGEOUS Partner-In-Crime Sweet Peg.

 I'm now off to have a cuppa & a bit of a read before hitting the machine again to work on a new quilt design ... Stay tuned! :0) Hope you're having a great weekend whatever you're up to. Til next time ...



PS. Apologies to all who've left comments or emailed in the last couple of weeks & haven't heard back from me ... I'm way behind in answering but will get caught up ... One day! :0) xx




Saturday, 22 April 2017

Technology ... SIGH!!


Hello to you all out there in blogland! I'm still here & believe it or not I've actually posted five times in the last week ... Just not successfully!! Ah, technology ... Keeping us connected ... Unless it doesn't feel like it!

You may now have guessed that I've been experiencing technical difficulties. That would be an understatement! Five times I wrote a fairly lengthy post sharing some photos & adventures we had over the Easter weekend. Five times something went wrong & my post vanished into cyberspace or ended up on the wrong blog (long story ... Sorry Chookyblue!). GRRRRR! In the end I became discouraged & gave up! Then, I got busy, so still haven't come back to share our Easter adventures. I promise I will ... Just as soon as I meet a deadline I'm working to at the moment.

In the meantime I hope you're all well & having a lovely weekend so far. I'm madly sewing ... That deadline! :0) OPAM gals ... The month is slipping by quickly ... Don't forget to update your sidebar finishes list. And enjoy the rest of the weekend. I promise to be back soon ... Once technology & I make friends again. :0) Til next time ...



Sunday, 9 April 2017

Treasures & OPAM Winner!

Happy Sunday to you all out there in blogland ... Whether you're just starting it in the northern hemisphere or (sadly!) just finishing it like we are in the Southern Hemisphere. SIGH! Why do weekends seem to disappear so quickly?!

It's been a fairly uneventful but productive couple of days here at the Meares' Madhouse ... I finally seem to have caught up with the grown up chores around the house & we spent quite a lot of time in the garden trying to wrestle it back from the weeds which went BURKO after the rain. Seriously ... If the world is ever destroyed by a nuclear holocaust, I reckon the two survivors will be cockroaches & cobblers pegs weeds! :0)

So, due to the domestic battle front, there wasn't any sewing to speak of, but I finally remembered to snap some pics of the treasures I found during my recent play date with my Bestest-Buddy-Since-We-Were-Nine Lynette. I was on a budget due to our trip away the previous weekend (which I came in UNDER!!) but I managed to snaffle some bargains. :0)

Here's my haul. One of my fave finds was the tablecloth on the table. It's a lovely cream linen with lace inserts & almost long enough for our ten seater table. Here's a close up of the lace insert ...

Isn't it GORGEOUS?!! These are spaced around the centre of the cloth to form an oval. It will be perfect for our next garden party ... Or stitching play date. :0)

Here're the rest of my finds. Another couple of crochet lace tablecloths, an embroidered supper cloth, some odd doilies, a pretty green Meakin jug (gravy boat??) & a Royal Doulton trio. The trio really caught my eye with its handsome Scotch Thistle design ... & when I turned it over to find that it is a Glamis Thistle, it was even more special. You see, Glamis was the Queen Mum's home & there is a connection on our family tree to the Queen Mum ... apparently! :0)

There were MANY other gorgeous antiques seen in our travels, but I was good. I really am a sucker for pretty vintage linens & china though. :0)

Right ... On to the OPAM draw. A big thank you to everyone who emailed their finishes to me or my GORGEOUS Partner-In-Crime Sweet Peg ... it's a huge help each month to just have to transfer tallies from emails to the spreadsheet. And everyone must have been busy bees in March because we had a total of ...


WOW! Well done everyone! :0) And well done to those of you who are working on longer term projects if you've managed to make some good headway on your projects in the last month. With a drum roll ... the winner for the random draw for March is ...


Congratulations, Kirsten! If you'd like to send me an email with your snail mail address, I'll pop a little something in the mail for you.

But right now ... I'm off to heat up some yummy homemade pumpkin soup left over from Friday night's stitching play date and afterwards, dessert will be a toasted hot cross bun with a nice mug of hot chocolate. OK ... so there are one or two things about cooler weather that I don't mind so much! Tee! Hee! Hee! Have a fantastic week and be kind to yourselves and each other. Til next time ...



Friday, 7 April 2017

Good Friends, Good Food, Good Fun!!

Hello to all of my lovely blogging buddies out there in blogland! I hope you've had a fantastic week. Mine seemed to disappear in a flash, but I didn't mind too much because it meant Friday came around quickly. Now even though Friday is usually a good day because I don't have to go to work, this week was extra special because a few of the Friday Nighters were meeting up for a play date ... At the Meares Madhouse! :0)

Since I missed our last mini retreat, our last sewing night got cancelled & our next one falls on Good Friday, we were worried about having stitching buddy withdrawal symptoms. :0) My crazy-busy week meant I spent the morning racing around like a crazy person to make the house look like two reasonably responsible adults live here rather than two irresponsible & messy teenagers :0) but that's been good, because now I'll have more time over the weekend for fun stuff! :0)

So after lunch ...

.. This mottley crew gathered around our dining room table to chat, eat, drink tea ... Oh! ... And stitch. :0)

Look at those cheeky faces! And then they try to tell me that I'M the instigator of the Naughty Table! Hmmmmmmm!!

Just to prove there WAS some stitching done ...

... Sue finished the stitchery part of a Nikki Tervo Brandy Gully design. (She's holding it carefully so she doesn't get vanilla slice stickiness on her work! Tee! Hee! Hee!)

Since the weather has taken a cool dip, (RATS!) I made a big batch if pumpkin soup & a fresh loaf of sourdough rye bread - YUMMO! Then for dessert, Chris made ...

Trifle! DOUBLE YUMMO!! I have to tell you, we all waddled away from the table! :0) Thanks for coming to visit me, girls! We'll have to do it again soon. :0)

But now, it's past even this night-owl's bed time, so I'll sign off for now. I'll be back before the end of the weekend with the OPAM prize draw winner, so stay tuned. Til next time ...







Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Who Ya Gonna Call??!

Ok ... Did all of you children of the 80's answer that question with ...


My brother & I both loved the original two movies ... Bill Murray still cracks me up when a rainy day sees me curled up with some stitching & a movie marathon. 

So what has this walk down memory lane got to do with sewing, you may be asking. Well ... It all began when I shared a call for help put out by Jan-Maree at Aussie Hero Quilts. I'd heard of this wonderful group of quilters who send quilts to many of our defence force members who are serving overseas. It's a little bit of home when they're a long way from it & a reminder that their service is appreciated.

It seems an increase in requests for quilts & laundry bags combined with a lot of quilts & quilt tops being lost when Jan-Maree's house was gutted by fire last year led to requests outweighing supply of quilts.

I happily shared the call out for help, but I wasn't planning to put my hand up to make a quilt as I have my own deadlines to work towards. But ... As I skimmed through the list of requests, one caught my eye ... A quilt with a theme of "Original Ghostbusters". Growing up I remember my Mum making my brother a doona cover with the Ghostbusters logo on it. I had to do it! :0)

This quilt was not without its challenges ... How do some simple projects seem to throw up challenges?!?! However ... I persevered & it's now FINISHED! :0) Wanna see?? Ok ...

Ta da! I'm really happy with how it's come up. I've done this as a raw edge appliqué ... Which was the biggest challenge as it meant manoeuvring the 70"x42" quilt through my petite Husky ... Which in turn contributed to the problems I had with the easy fix not staying stuck. GRRRRR!  I've bound it in a fun red & white diagonal candy cane stripe fabric.

A big THANK YOU to my GORGEOUS Quilting Fairy Fabulous Fiona for squeezing this into her busy schedule so I could meet my tight deadline. Fiona has once again worked her quilting magic, though it's a bit hard to see as its black on black.

 So now I need to stitch the label on & it will be ready to be posted off. If you're interested in helping Jan-Maree & her merry band to encourage our defence force personnel by making a quilt or a laundry bag pop over to the blog to find out more HERE.

PHEW! So that's what has been keeping me busy ... What have you been working on? And OPAMers ... What have you FINISHED?!? If you haven't yet emailed Sweet Peg or me, you've got a couple more days before I do the draw.

Right ... That's it from me for today. I hope your week is going well so far ... & that it continues to do so. :0) Til next time ...





Tuesday, 28 March 2017

And Now For The REAL Post!

Ah ... Technology! I wrote & edited a whole post yesterday only to have my iPad ap chucked a wobbly & ate it. So ... This is "Take Two"! :0)

So ... Here it is, the start of a new week & I'm EXHAUSTED after yet another busy weekend ... But it was FUN! :0) I threw some things into a bag, jumped in my little blue car & headed down the 'hill' for a sleepover play date weekend with my Bestest-Buddy-Since-We-Were-Nine Lynette. YAY!

We decided to start our time together with lunch & headed to a new-to-us spot, "The Rendezvous Tea Room" in Brisbane's Wooloongabba. We had a bit of trouble finding the tea room ... It really is a little hole-in-the-wall spot, but well worth the search. 

Here we are enjoying our low tea ... High tea has to be pre-booked, but we certainly enjoyed our tasty treats & freshly brewed tea in the wonderful "War Years" decor. It truly was like stepping back in time to the 1940's, complete with a 1940's music soundtrack, a tea leaf reader, schedule of spiritualist evenings ... & an air raid siren! :0) If you live in Bris or visit the city, I can certainly recommend "The Rendezvous Tea Room".

After that culinary beginning to our play date, the rest of the weekend was a bit of an antiques-&-collectibles hop ... Multiple antiques & collectibles shops & two great fairs. Both of us bagged some bargains, but I haven't had a chance to take pics yet ... Stay tuned. :0) Thanks for a fun belated birthday catch up, Lynette! We'll have to do it again soon. OOPS! Did you just hear two husbands pass out?!?! Tee! Hee! Hee!

So you can probably guess that with all of that tea-swilling, sandwich-munching, antique-hunting, catchup-chatting, best-friend-giggling going on there hasn't been any sewing happening here ... But I bet others in blogland have been hard at work. And since the end of the month is almost upon us ... OPAMers ... Have you updated your sidebar lists & emailed your finishes tally to me or my GORGEOUS Partber-In-Crime Sweet Peg? Well ... Get hopping before WE do! :0)

Right now, though, it's time to go hunt & gather something for dinner so I'll sign off. Have a fantastic week & to anyone being affected by Cyclone Debbie, please take care & stay safe. (For those wondering, we're quite a long way south of the cyclone, though we're hoping some of the leftover rain will come our way.)Til next time ...




Testing, Testing!

Check, one two! Just trying to determine if my blogging ap is playing nicely after it swallowed a post yesterday. Stay tuned! :0)



Thursday, 23 March 2017

Bit Of A Birthday!

Hello to all you lovelies out there in blogland! I hope you're all having a fabulous week. Well ... We had to come home from the beach ... SIGH! But ... We had a wonderful time helping Grandma celebrate her 94th birthday.

In amongst the smoke from 94 candles, another March gal celebrated a birthday ...

Haven't changed much, have I?! Tee! Hee! Hee! Yes, my birthday sort of got absorbed into Grandma's celebrations, but I DID receive a few special treats to spoil me. My Beloved Geek Boy organised a foot massage for me, as well as a bit of a splurge at the Quilters Shack in Bundaberg ... Isn't it lovely to have someone who knows & understands you! :0) Here's what followed me home ...

Some YUMMY batiks. The blues & green will join a stash of batiks I have tucked away to make myself another patchwork tiered skirt. The reds? Weeeeeeellll ... They were just so PRETTY that I had to adopt them! :0)

I also received a special gift from one of the lovely ladies from the retirement village where I work.

A ring box. Just kidding! :0) But that will give you an idea of the size of the giftie.

Isn't it GORGEOUS!! This miniature teacup & saucer is holding a bunch of teeny-tiny flowers. Thanks Marg! :0) Now I need to find the best spot  to display it.

A big "THANK YOU" to all of you gorgeous cyber buddies who sent emails, FaceBook messages & texts to wish me a happy birthday. I may have had to be a grown up & go to work, but I certainly felt very loved! :0)

And as a bit of a delayed birthday treat, I'm off to Brisbane tomorrow for a sleepover play date weekend with my Bestest-Buddy-Since-We-Were-Nine Lynette. Did you just hear two husbands shudder in fear?! Tee! Hee! Hee! We haven't got any set-in-concrete plans but there are whispers of an antique shop hop, maybe some coffee shop visits & I can guarantee there will be LOTS of chatting & LOTS of laughing. :0) I promise I'll report back on our adventures next week ... Stay tuned! :0)

And since the housework is all over the shop at the moment due to our comings & goings, I need to go & throw some clothes in the washing machine so I've got clean knickers to take with me. :0) Whatever you're up to, I hope you have a fabulous weekend. Til next time ...







Saturday, 18 March 2017

A Special Birthday!

I usually drop in to tell you what's happening at the Meares' Madhouse, but I can't do that today ... Cos I'm not there! :0) This was my view this morning ...

It's a tough gig, but we're coping! Tee! Hee! Hee! We're at Bargara beach to help celebrate a pretty special birthday ... My Grandma is celebrating her 94th birthday! WOW! 

Here she is blowing out the candles on her apple crumble cheese cake ... It's a good thing we found a "9" shaped candle & a "4" shaped candle ... We'd never have fitted 94 single candles on the cake ... & might have set off the smoke detector! :0) She's still keeping pretty well & has only recently moved out of her own unit into higher care as she isn't just as steady on her feet any more & is getting a wee bit forgetful. (Though, seriously, who isn't a wee bit forgetful!)

While our family is pretty scattered - Cairns, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Toowoomba - a few of us managed to be on hand to wish Grandma a happy birthday ...

There were lots of finger-food treats to be nibbled while we chatted ... & maybe a glass of bubbles ...

My Aunt & Grandma ... "Cheers Bigears"! :0) Had a giggle at this next pic when editing ...

We're not sure what Grandma was thinking, but it looks like she's suspicious of what is in her glass! Tee! Hee! Hee!

It's been nice to catch up with family ... & the view's not hard to take! :0) Sadly we head home tomorrow & hoping to take some of the rain that is currently falling home with us.

Hope you're having a great weekend, too. :0) Til next time ...







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