Friday, September 30, 2016

If all else fails

At the office things are dead quiet with us being fully booked for any new jobs until the end of the year.  So although DH and the workers run around like chicken without heads to get everything done in time, we ladies are bored stiff.  We cannot make more appointments for measurements or book jobs thus meaning very few invoices being made.  So we sit and sit and sit and even when the phone rings it turns out to be a short conversation with one of us informing the other party that we are unable to help.

So with my hand problem I got my co-workers going.  First lesson in English paper piecing and even though not done by myself, my Millefiore is getting along nicely and the best part is that they are actually enjoying the process.  Must admit the office is now even quieter as they concentrate so intensely on their sewing that no-one says a word!

How does the saying go:  “If you are not strong, you better be clever!”  Here Zelda and Belinda can be seen in action.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Block 18 Carla

Our local Telkom workers have been rather annoying lately with having to install new optic fibre cables and with my luck the telephone pole would be right in my yard.  Not fun to have strangers come into your space with three huge dogs around and it turns out, our newest Border collie is more viscous than anyone of us ever suspected.

Fortunately DH could sort out the crap as it turned out they wanted to plant a pole in a new spot in our yard not 2 meters away from an existing pole in the neighbour’s yard – empty plot with no dogs.  Really, can these people not think for themselves?

Having been forced to keep the dogs in the entertainment area I got to finish Block 18 from the “Katja Marek’s Quilt with me” project.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Rosette 2: Centre hexagon

Okay I’ve started this one, not much but at least a start and I am rather chuffed about this beginning. 

Now I must just remember not to try and do too much and screw my hands up again.  Had a haircut and I feel light and in the mood for Summer.  A pity the wind blows up terrible dust leaving a layer on every possible surface.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Clue 6

We’ve been somewhat under the weather over here.  First mother-in-law came down with a tummy virus.  DH bought her medicine and took this to her just to find out that he obviously contracted her virus and wasn’t doing too good either and now I am stuck with a cold and a sore throat and I am taking honey as if it will run dry soon but it helps.  The other truth of the matter is that I now feel so much better than the same time last year when I came down with tick bite fever and honestly just wanted to die and get it over with.

In the mean while I got clue 6 to the Hillbilly Space Journey mystery and finished my 24 Wing Fighters.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Slow in quilting

It seems with my hands, stitching is something that will take forever and I am making slow or rather no progress.  So in the mean while I kept myself busy by adopting another dog.  This time it was an old Border collie whose humans simply gave him up because they got a new dog, how convenient.  So he had three teeth extracted to cure his terribly bad breath and a tumour removed from his back and apart from following me every step of the way, he is doing very well.
Then future son-in-law turned 30 and we had a surprise party for him and I am really getting too old to keep secrets.  For some ridiculous reason (o wait he updated his new gift with our internet) he spent most of the day by us and I didn’t know what to talk about to him.  No conversation about food, drinks, entertainment or clothing as it may turn into the events of the evening.  It was good when it was done!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Clue 5

At this stage I would still not regard my hands as 100% up to hand sewing but I hate sitting around while the quilting world runs away from me.  So seeing that this was not a huge finish I decided to take it slow but at least get up to date with the next clue to my Hillbilly Space Journey mystery.

These are my Shooting Stars and although this fabric is not ideal for fussy cutting, I do like the movement the coloured dots add to it.  Looks like shooting stars to me.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Rosette 2, only beginning

With my hands still not willing to work, I put all my Freezer paper hexagons needed for this rosette up against the design wall and I’ve realised, if Rosette 1 didn’t drive me nuts, this one might.
 If you turn one hexagon the wrong way around or have one single fabric in the wrong place, you will have a totally different pattern and even end up with yet another star as in Rosette 6 and I am not even sure that I like the star in Rosette 6.

And as if I wasn’t depressed enough by now (check, first glass of wine going down well already!) I took out some fabric to see how and where this could go.  After staring and starting and staring at these, I decided to go for the second glass of wine.  At least I can pour and drink wine rather successfully.
Why is it that when you find that perfect picture on fabric you'd like to use for your centre piece there would only be 3 on a 3 yard piece of fabric and then not near the sides, top or bottom but right in the centre???  Looking at the photo above, none of these fabrics even seem to go together.  Sigh.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Aches and pains

In my previous post I complained about my hands and fingers in need of a break from hand stitching but by then I think it must have been even worse than I initially thought.  On Thursday it felt as if my hands were about to cramp at any given moment, so instead of quilting we went out with friend Karin and her hubby to watch a local rugby game.
By Friday it seemed as if the aches turned into an inflammation and flared up into my arms, shoulders and back.  So I cooked instead of quilt and tried out a creamy lambs’ liver recipe shared by a co-worker.

Wort of all is that I got my next clue to the HillbillySpace Journey mystery and excited or not, couldn’t do a thing about it.

Decided not to try and be too brave and took anti-inflammatory tablets Friday evening and Saturday morning and used an infra-red massager on myself.

Not to go totally insane from quilt withdrawal I traced the rest of the 52 blocks (32 in total) from Katja Majek's Quilt with me project onto freezer paper, ready for fabric auditioning.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Block 17 completed

With DH away on business for one evening I had the run of the house with no cooking whatsoever.  Always an amazing feeling and it is not as if I totally hate cooking but a change in routine is always welcome.

I finished Brenda, block 17 and still trying to give my hand and fingers a break I decided not to do more actual sewing but instead traced a couple of future blocks onto freezer paper and to cut my batting for these.

Went out to dinner with the kids and grandchild the evening and looking at the little one I often wish I had her ongoing energy.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Rosette 1

I did it!!! I know I complained all the way through making Rosette 1 and yes, it was a back breaker but now that it is done, I feel great.  Okay not my wrist, thumb and inner hand; these can feel the strain of constant hand work.

After adding the final round I feel much better about the colours too and even though some participants suggested starting with a smaller rosette first, I am glad I got this monster out of the way.
In the process I have learnt a couple of very valuable lessons to remember in the Millefiore quilt along.

Do not use scraps, you may want to repeat the fabric and/or colour later
Leave large enough seam allowances.  Because I eyeball and use the rotary cutter I’ve really left a couple of skimpy seam allowances on some shapes
Print all your blocks in as many as you need and put these in order on the design wall.  This way you can see how the shapes will flow into each other making the planning on which fabric/colour to use so much easier.

And with all of this said, I can proudly show off Rosette number 1.
DH was just as clever when it came to creating and made this neat car seat for our parrot, Meeko.  Now she looks me in the eye when we travel.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Clue 4

I feel so uncertain about this clue to the Hillbilly SpaceJourney mystery .  I honestly don’t know whether I’ve added the triangles to the correct hexagons.  I have so many, I couldn’t make up my mind but it is done and if not right, it will simply be a matter of unpicking and redoing.

I tried my hand at ostrich neck in a red wine and soup powder sauce and it turned out great but I’ve finally decided that a slow cooker (crock pot) and I will never really be friends.  Seriously with a pressure cooker I could have had this dish cooked and served in an hour and a half but in the slow cooker it took forever.  So my dear crock pot can really find another home, be it daughter or daughter-in-law, I don’t really mind.
I also had a first time visit from my 3 other grandchildren who found exploring our TV room rather exhausting.

Friday, September 09, 2016

Clue 3

I already got this clue to the Hillbilly Space Journeymystery on Wednesday, 1 August but it required me to sew 162 1½” diamonds together to make a total of 54 space rocks.  This kept me rather busy and I couldn’t finish in a week before the next clue was supposed to appear on the 7th and as if Tonya knew I wouldn’t make it, she fortunately forgot to post the clue before rushing off to work, so I had one more day to see how many I could finish.

One day however wasn’t enough with me being somewhat under the weather and I needed yet one more day but finally could finish my 54 space rocks.

With this said, I am taking time out this weekend, with nothing but ME stuff!

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Ouma went shopping

I warned my big kids, when pregnant, that I don’t like babies and the little one can come over only on Easter and Christmas and I still stand by my rule.  But now our little princess is 4 years old and no baby no more and I love her to bits.

So with spring in the air and summer fast approaching Ouma went pretty dress shopping and I could not wait for her to fit and pose in these.

When her godmother fetched her from school on Friday to bring her to us for the weekend it turned into a major fashion parade and typically little girl, she decided to keep the pink dress on.

Needless to say, very little quilting gets done with this little busy body visiting.

Thursday, September 01, 2016

More vegetarian cooking

In my attempts to keep my youngster, who turned vegetarian, fed, I have discovered a world of wild, weird and wonderful things.  One being these soy chunks.

Had to get outside assistance to how to prepare these and after being quickly boiled liked pasta, I fried it with peppers, onions, cream cheese and a chilli sauce.

Heated tortilla wraps and used my soy filling with a little grated cheese and chives.  

Really good but the worst part is, the rest of us are having oxtail….. Shikes!!, how come I feel guilty??? Maybe because she shared this horrific video on Facebook?

So fellow meat lovers, let's pray to our higher force, be it Buddha, Allah, God, Jehovah or whom-ever that the meat we eat today was slaughtered in a humane way.