Thursday, September 24, 2009

hiking up a hill

view from car park to destination

hello Mr snake
every time we turned a corner more of this sight greeted us - sigh

a bit windy but great view
Henry with his cute pose

On Sunday we decided that a nice walk would be a good family thing to do - no matt as he was at drama practice. With our friends the Mcnivens who have a 12yo and a 10 yo (henry loves them to pieces, Meaghan claims to really, really not like them but her and Jasper are never far from each other whenever we go somewhere..) we headed out to Tidbinbilla park.

We had a lovely picnic lunch and then decided to tackle Gibraltar Rocks. Ok, I'm not the fittest of people but I was slightly worried that the guide mentioned the rating 'hard'. 6km round trip, not that long but let's face it it was all up hill on a fire trail -very bright, not really a bush walk, and slippery.

On the way up the kids ran (!!!) ahead, Geoff and Pete did the manly stride and Michelle and I sensibly walked at the rear and had a good chat. Henry dropped between the packs depending on who was more interesting. Henry was also the first one to spot the snake, long and brown and yes, deadly. Did he panic like a sensible child? well no, just ran back and casually pointed it out like it was a kangaroo. Luckily he didn't go too near it and the snake turned tail and ran - yay. But we were all a bit more wary after that.

Although I was completely worn out by the time we reached the rocks, the views were just astonishing. The wind was blowing a gale but that added to the drama of the place. Clear skies and a view back to Canberra, amazing and I have to say well worth it (even for very lazy people like yours truly...)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


I whipped up a couple of these, so easy out of Amy Karol's book, bend the rules sewing. Very quick and effective. The one with the pink spots was for Jodie and the other is waiting for a new home (of I might just keep it my self...).

happy birthday part2

We finally made it out to celebrate both my and Jodies birthday. We ended up at Pistachio's in torrens and it was great. Food was very yummy and we didn't have to yell at each other to be heard (unlike delissio's). Katie and I shared dessert as did the slightly more refined Jo and Ros. I think there is no dignified way to descibe how we ate, ok hoovering did come to mind but it was so delicious, a small portion of all their desserts - oh just yum. I think we will be back.

Friday, September 18, 2009

An explanation and a result - yay

Our Principal has been at our school for close to 3 years now and is not what you would call a people person. There are many and varied stories of her completely misreading or ignoring children's needs and many small incidents that lead to a general bad feeling around the place. The teachers are, thank goodness, wonderful.

The other day I was at school helping the librarian (who is so overloaded with duties, the school would collapse without her) and the Principal came in. She obviously had a bee in her bonnet about something and set about accusing the librarian of wasting school resources as well as teacher's time. When it was pointed out that parent helpers were actually doing the work, this did not improve the mood and other orders were snapped out to a very taken aback and angry librarian.

I was so disgusted at her treatment of the staff that i was compelled to send her an email pointing out that to gain the respect of staff and parents you first had to show them respect and wasn't this exactly what we were trying to teach the kids?

No reply was to be heard from said principal but I was at school again today helping move books out of the library for the refurbishment and the principal approached, hmm interesting I think to myself... But out came a "thank you so very much for helping, we really appreciate it, and Heather (the librarian who was standing with mouth agape at this stage) how many people do you want to help, please just ask, can't help too much etc etc."

Wow, a complete turn around, and so complaining does work in the short term anyway, hopefully some of the message will sink in.

ps- on a completely unrelated note Cadbury chocolates has recently become a certified fair trader of chocolate (ie no child/underpaid workers harvesting cocoa beans - a huge, huge issue) so we now have another excuse to indulge in chocolaty goodness - we are helping farmers in developing countries guilt free...


Thursday, September 17, 2009

finally finished

my submissions to the jenni Bowlin guest design spot from her big picture class. I really enjoyed all the sewing for the album cover, very pleased with that. The man in the photo is my great great grandfather, who looks a lot like one of my brothers except for the facial hair (hmm maybe convince brother Geoff to grow beard....).

The photo of my mother is one of my favourite photos, she looks so happy and relaxed unlike most of the more uptight photos of children taken prewar. The hand colouring is wonderful as well. I have mounted it on an old book cover and used an old library card and pocket for the journalling. I helped the librarian at our school to clear out a heap of old books and managed to score piles of these cards and pockets so if you want any let me know, I certainly have more than I can use!

tomorrow I will tell all about our lovely night out, Henry's learning journey, and maybe a disturbing tale of our principal which ends in me sending an email to complain of her complete lack of respect for staff and parents, sigh.

Friday, September 11, 2009

a good morning

Met up with the lovely Jo (who embroiders the most amazing ladies, very funky) for a morning stitch and bitch session at a local club. I am working on a scrapbooking album cover for the Jenni bowlin class I have been doing. At home I was getting nowhere but manage to stitch the morning away happily and mostly finished one of the main pieces on the front.

Have to complete this as well as two LO's for a shot at being a guest designer at her mercantile store for a month somewhere along the track. Lots of talented ladies taking her class though, so the competition will be tough.

have a good weekend, I think I am off to a local handmade show for a sticky beak as well as the usual driving kids around, looks like great weather coming up so might even do some gardening..

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Mountain biking

We here in little ol' Canberra had the world mountain bike championships, located handily enough just up the road from us. Geoff is a huge mountain bike convert, trying to ride most weekends so this was the equivalent of heaven for him. I was lucky enough to snag a couple of free tickets to the final day so off we went. Nice fathers day present as well.

the day could not have been nicer weather wise, high teens and blue sky, lovely start of spring stuff (it absolutely and rarely poured the next day which would have been disastrous on the Sunday!). So we trudged through the crowds and up the mountain (OK probably only rates as a hill compared to most places), stopping to admire the different events on the way.

Henry was in little boy heaven, we got him a cow bell so he could make legitimate noise, there was rocks and dirt everywhere to play with (and sticks, can't forget the magical qualities of sticks..) as well as big boys rushing head first down a steep slope and doing enormous jumps.

Meaghan came along but I suspect on top of her cold, it was a bit too much for her and in true Meaghan tradition, vomited after she went to bed ta night ( you could just about set a clock on her, if she is feeling unwell before she goes to bed, you can bet that she will throw up between 11pm and midnight!).

All in all a fine way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Th LO is all designer digitals stuff with the 'real' and a few of the elements part of this weeks magazine challenge (ie freebies) over at designer digitals. I love that the stuff they give away every week is such high quality.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

spoiling myself part2

Ok maybe I did go a bit overboard at Addicted to Fabric but I saw this (book) and then this (printed linen) and I couldn't decide, what was i to do? It IS my birthday (well my birthday week, that isn't stretching it too far) so I ended up succumbing. The book is the cutest book, the quilt patterns are very funky and we do have a new baby in the family coming and the patterns can be extended to make larger patterns, enough justification. All pretty easy designs and an excuse to but more fabric.

and how could I go past the winter nest fabric panel? They must have only just come in because the ladies behind the counter hadn't sighted them and went and snavelled a couple for themselves. It came in brown and green as well. It is Australian printed and the range includes some very cute squirrels, a donkey cuckoo clock (looks far better than it sounds!) and a robot range for the boys. You can see more of her stuff here.

Have yet to decide what to do with it but am favouring just binding and hanging it as is.

spoiling myself part1

My MIL gave me some money for my birthday so I trundled down to my local fabric shop which I have to say has improved exponentially over the past couple of years (ie it stocks stuff that I drool over), and decided to treat myself to an Amy Butler book. This is a treat to flick through, although it really is just a luscious big advertisement for her own lines but still lovely to look at.

You can tell they don't have kids but some of the ideas/colour schemes etc are very usable. I just need to train my lot that every spare surface does not have to be filled with their junk (how much lego can a house hold?) or that the mantle piece is not a dumping ground for all Geoff's sporting/work realted stuff...

I live in dreams.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Happy birthday to me

Normally I try to just ignore my birthday, not in a bad, tearful, I can't believe I am...(insert whatever age is appropriate) sort of way. more in a it's just another day where I still have to do housework sort of thing.

Well today is my birthday and I think I shall enjoy it. Presents and cards from Geoff and kids, as well as mum and dad and MIL start to the day (Elvis Costello tickets for Geoff and I as a combined birthday/fathers day gift plus the usual assortment of DVDs that Geoff wants to watch or is that me being a wee bit cynical...). Morning tea to farewell a friend off overseas was a lovely way to spend the morning and now a day spent crafting and maybe eating some chocolate. Meaghan has her year 7 social on tonight so maybe just grab some takeaway for tea, nice relaxing day I think.

The photo was my third birthday and shows a typical spread with the best sponges ever made, jelly beans and cupcakes. I think the drinks where probably Crowther's, our local drink makers (you don't get that anymore). the photo is also a typical Mum photo, heads cut off but I guess at least the party girl was nearly the focus (sorry Mum but you know it's true).

Have a great day x

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

better than christmas

My August Cocoa Daisy kit arrived today and oh my goodness it is full of good things. I had ordered some add ons in my July kit but due to a mix up they were sent to someone else. So the very lovely Tricia sent them with this months kit as well as a few extra goodies. I can't wait to get started playing with these, my favourites are the cards (the bottom photo), aren't they wonderful, the only drawback is that they are double sided, which side to use?. Next month Ali Edwards has picked out her favs and I can't wait for them as well, too much fun.

Henry has been home for a week and a half now. He had a fever, followed by a cold which inevitability triggers his asthma. Monday night he complained of a sore ear and sure enough a trip to our doctor on Tuesday ended with antibiotics. It is going to be a struggle to get him back into school mode but tomorrow he shall go (fingers crossed).

Tonight we are off to Matt's house dinner, a farewell for the year 12's. I can't believe it will be Matt's turn this time next year. As a bonus, Matt and his friend James are hosting tonight, which will be interesting as I have never heard Matt speak in public before. He isn't nervous (yet) but the boys are all so self confident, it amazes me every year.

have a good week x

ps Matt ended up with 20/20 for his derivative vampire story printed on my parchment paper so I think I can claim full responsibility for those marks, I am sure the content of the story had nothing to do with it!