Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Sick day today

I felt so dreadful yesterday that I thought I must be coming down with full influenza (minimum - probably typhoid or dengue, not that I'm hypochondriac at all) but after some catch up sleep and a quiet day I feel fine again ... so probably not typhoid. We shall call it a virus, but I might just have been a bit tired and cranky. And if that's not an illness it should be. On the plus side, I had a sofa buddy.

We are at that time of the year when the sun buckets into the living room. Just six weeks in spring and autumn luckily - it would kill us dead in summer - but it is beautiful while it lasts. And yes, it is spring, the daffodils are up, the wattle is blooming and the baby magpies have been kicked out of the nest. They tap on the kitchen window if you're at the sink and eye you off until you give them cheese. Or meat. It must be working because we haven't been swooped in our yard yet.... It's a bit easier now the cat is officially deaf and, we think, a bit blind as well. She can still feel the sun though.

Saturday, August 19, 2017


Well here's a boring picture of my sewing desk today - covered in papers. I am still trying to knock off this essay - and it's only the little one! We have to do a big research paper as well, god knows how that's going to go. I don't find it particularly difficult to do or think about once I get going, but my attention span is so tiny that the main problem is keeping my head down and doing it! I'm sure I used to be able to study all day. Maybe I'm remembering it wrong, maybe I always wandered around doing other stuff and failed to focus in more than ten-minute bursts ... It is agonising. But probably quite good for me.

On a much brighter note, this is what I bought at the craft fair last week. Some beautiful variegated pink merino/mohair blend from New Zealand, and the yellow is recycled sari silk made into yarn! Isn't that cool? It's a beautiful golden yellow and not strong enough for anything other than perhaps a couple of stripes on a weft. But it is sitting in a bag waiting for me ... once I've done some footnoting and stuff. I don't think I'll be doing my masters any time soon.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Flowers in little pots

I have been making flower pot blocks. These are inspired by Freddy and Gwen Collaborate Again - although they use yo-yos for the flowers and I have gone with raw edge appliqué. I don't know why that suddenly decided to inspire me while I was flicking through the quilting books, but it did, and the blocks are rather fun.

The quilt in the book has the flowers in vertical rows, but I quite like the idea of horizontal rows, so they look like they are on a shelf. I will see what to do with them when they're done - of course I didn't think of putting them together horizontally while I was cutting them so they're all different heights, but nothing some random bits of fabric added on can't fix. For now I'm just enjoying cutting different flowers out of bright colours and sewing them together.

I did spend a solid few hours on my uni assignment on the weekend, so I thought I could indulge with some guilt free sewing. As opposed to procrastisewing, which is laden with guilt. In the past weeks I have done procrastibaking, procrasticleaning, procrastiwashing and I even went for a 5km run rather than work on my assignment. This is why I haven't been back to uni for 25 years.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

The food

It's been all about the food this week - even more than a usual week - eating is one of the main pleasures of my life, which is why I am so fat. Oh well. It was my birthday, so we started off with dinner out at a Malaysian restaurant. We were going to go for dessert at a chocolate shop nearby, but it was closed, so we got chocolate from the supermarket and ate it on the sofa. Delicious. And this is the birthday cake my husband made me - fudge from the fudge shop interspersed with chocolate brownie he'd made. Isn't it pretty? And delicious. It took all week to eat.

My work also had afternoon tea for my birthday - I made a lemon drizzle cake because we have SO MANY lemons. And this weekend we went round to friends' last night for dinner and hear about their six weeks in Europe (looked gorgeous, very jealous), and brunch with friends this morning. I think breakfast out is my favourite meal. Bacon.

I went to the Canberra Quilters Exhibition this afternoon which was lovely as always. Lots of very beautiful quilts, and the one that won is stunning. There is definitely a trend towards very elaborate and detailed quilting, which looks fabulous but it's not something that speaks to my heart. Or that I would ever really be interested in doing. But show quilts are always a breed apart. I poked around the vendors and bought some wool for weaving - not that I have been doing much weaving lately. I must find something good to watch on foxtel and then I will no doubt get right back into it...

Thursday, August 10, 2017

The geese that fly

Another finished quilt! I do not know what inspired this, other than an urge to make something simple, in not many colours, and light and bright. It is all flying geese, which are easy to make in bulk. I didn't plan the placement, just put them together in strips that seemed to make sense at the time - some are groups of four, and some are groups of eight, and they go in various directions.

It's quilted with a flower-type swirl that was very swooshy and fun to do.

And the backing fabric even matches! How weird is that, I had it there, enough for a backing, and it is the same colours as the front. The quilt is called "This is all a result of your own life choices" because it usually is.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

A burst water main

It's back to work, and no free time, and dark winter days ... and the most exciting thing that happened this week was a burst water main up on the street. And it wasn't even that exciting because it burst about three feet from the drain and just happily flooded into it. Which is just as well, because if it had gone the other way it would have done some damage to our front garden, and possibly the house, given our feeble our drainage is.

We reported it to the water company, who came in an hour or two and chopped two large gum trees down. Well that was unexpected, we thought to ourselves, you would think they would have asked. We are assuming that the trees weren't on our property (it's quite hard to tell where our property line ends and the nature strip starts). But we still quite liked them - there's a little grove of gums with pretty pink blossoms up on the road. Or there was a little grove, there's only two trees left and I don't think you can call that a grove.

Anyway they chopped the trees up and left them on the front garden of the people across the road, which they probably weren't expecting either. And then a digger came and dug the ground and fixed the water, which was good, and that was the most exciting thing that happened this week! Other than our POSITIVELY LAST trip to Ikea yesterday morning when we bought more that could fit in the car, so had to leave number one son with the overflow boxes and $5 (all the change we could skerrick up) in the cafe by the checkouts for an hour while we went home and came back. We didn't think $5 was much help but he said it was five hot dogs, or ten soft serves, or two cans of cider. So he did quite well.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

And that was my holiday

Unbelievably, my three weeks leave is now over, and I haven't done half the things on the list. I haven't done the tax returns, or put all the photos in the album, or cleaned out the cupboard under the stairs. I did clear out the "random documents" drawer beside the computer, and organised a thermal assessment of the house, which was depressing. A guy spent a few hours crawling into the roof and and checking the insulation (not much) and doing thermal imaging of skylights and doors and windows to check the gaps (massive). The big room has no roof insulation at all and there's no room for any to go in, and the whole house has far too much glass in proportion to the house - which is lovely, but thermally hopeless, and it will cost about $50k to double glaze it all. Which is quite a lot of money. We don't know what we'll do but I think it might involve thermal underwear .... which is where our furry snuggly blanket on the couch comes in - yes Pam, we do have quilts as well, but cotton quilts cannot compare to the delight of four square metres of fake fur. It is awesome.

I went down to the beach on Tuesday following the moving men with our old sofa and armchair - we realised it was only slightly more expensive to get them to take it to the coast than to take it to the tip ... so the sofa and chair are down there now and we will retire some of the old recliners we got with the house. I then stayed down for four glorious days on my own. Didn't get lonely, didn't get bored, just did a lot of my uni assignment, ate what I wanted, went for lots of walks and did some sewing as well. It was lovely.

Very hard to come back, but I did, and went for a cold windy run around the lake this morning. Which was considerably livened up by the Santa Speedo Shuffle. Nothing like fit looking young men in budgie smugglers and santa hats to take your mind off your own athletic pain.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Hipster vintage retro cushions

When I was in Hobart I had a look through some pretty cool shops that sold all sorts of groovy homeware things. Way groovier than I could ever be, but I like to look. So when the new couch needed some new cushions I let the boys pick some covers, and I picked some covers, and then I remembered that I'd seen cushions in one of the Hobart shops made out of old commemorative tea towels. Hang about! I thought to myself. I have crap tons of old commemorative tea towels ... because Nana Joan did a lot of travelling and was partial to a nice linen tea towel, and I have them now for some reason that is not altogether clear to me.

Anyway this is the purchased cushion section of the sofa. I chose the fur one, number one son chose the plain one and number two son chose the stripy one. We already had the herringbone fur throw. It is in constant use, between me, the children, and the pets.

This is the hipster vintage retro section of the sofa. There is one rectangular New Zealand Birds cushion, and two square "Australian 1976" commemorative cushion. I am fairly confident Nana Joan went to Australian in 1976 - probably with her church, they did a lot of group trips - and this is from then. They are backed in a natural linen, so as not to detract from the awesomeness of the tea towels. I did fully intend to do piping around the edge like the ones in the shop I saw but I don't have a zipper or piping foot for this machine, and it was just too difficult without one. But I think they hold their own.

Should I do more? I have Australian Birds, Lake Windemere, two from Papua New Guinea, another New Zealand Birds, one with all the flags of the Country Women's Institute countries, Australian Flowers, Norfolk Island and Birds of the Countryside, which includes a wren and a pied flycatcher, so I'm thinking England again. They are all marked "pure linen" or "Irish linen" - I don't even know if you can get linen tea towels any more. I can't imagine using them to actually do the dishes.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Some boring photos

First up is a very boring photo that I took at the beach - off-white carpet in a room painted ivory! Wow! The room gets zero natural light so we thought we would keep everything nice and pale. It does look much better with carpet in it, and much warmer. Now for furniture - cramming as many random boxes from IKEA as we can into the car each time we go down. Stylish no, economical yes. I hemmed the curtains after I took this photo, they are now above the carpet and straight. Well, straight-ish.

And this is the result of some winter gardening this morning. Chopping, pruning, coppicing, pollarding and trimming. And pulling dead things up. I gave the roses a very solid chopping, which they will probably be OK with, but the lamandras and the hakea might be a bit grumpier. But I like to see an empty-ish winter landscape with lots of room for nice things to grow back in spring. Hopefully.

I have kept going at a mad pace all week but I don't feel like I've accomplished anything. Lots of invisible tasks like re-hemming the curtain in the dressing room because it was fraying, hanging the last pictures from the hallway re-paint that have been poked under the spare bed for over a year, doing the tax return and organising the electrician to get the exhaust fan replaced. Once that's done I can re-paint the bathroom ceiling because it's gone mouldy with no ventilation... the fun never stops. I have also taken eight bags of clothes to the salvos, had two lunches with friends and spent FIVE HOURS with number two son getting an MRI on his ankle. His appointment was for 1.00 pm and they finally took him in at half past four. It was a free one at the public hospital so hard to be too cross about being bumped for lots of emergencies ... but it was a very long and boring afternoon. We will go and see the doctor in a week or two and get the results.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

A finished quilt!

Would you believe it, I have actually gone and finished a quilt. After being sidetracked by trivia like work, family, study and weaving I felt the pull of the sewing room and I finished off this scrap number that I pieced months ago.

Not very exciting - scrap blocks and half square triangles - it was when I was in my "use it all up" mood and there were SO MANY scrap blocks in the drawer. This didn't make the tiniest dent of course. I also want to use up one of the two rolls of batting in the sewing room because they take up so much space ... that's a pretty strange reason to make a quilt isn't it. But a very good reason for actually finishing one off! There are another couple in the queue and I plan to get to them soon.

Straight line quilting, several inches apart, all very utilitarian. It is called "Ten Dollars a Day" because I was grocery shopping yesterday at Aldi and actually thinking that, if I had to and it was just me, I could feed myself on ten dollars a day, which it takes me less than ten minutes to earn. Isn't that ridiculous? When has food ever been that cheap? It wouldn't be very fancy food, but I could keep body and soul together. I was thinking this as I piled in the completely unnecessary smoked trout and soft cheese and beer....

I am currently half way through three weeks' leave. We are so quiet in the midwinter break at work that I'm taking leave again like I did last year (although not so much of it this time) and trying to catch up on domestic chores. This morning I went to the butchers to order a ham for Saturday's Christmas in July party, the hardware for a new exhaust fan and a hair trap for the shower, the mall to pick up some photos to put in the album and some cushion inserts for the covers I am going to make for the new sofa, I've just hung out the washing and now I'm off to the chemo ward for the regular injection and then into town to meet a friend for lunch. This afternoon I will attempt to make an intelligent contribution to the on-line tutorials we have to do for the uni course, some more of the reading for the assignment, then take number two son off to the first rehearsal for his new production and cook the dinner. Who has time to work? I mean really?

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Holiday week

It's the second week of the school holidays and we have had a lovely few days at the beach. The boys bitched and moaned of course because they cannot live without internet ... but once we were there they were fine. The weather was beautiful - cold but clear. And not nearly as cold as Canberra, although we had a few nights down to zero.

We went for walks along the beach, visited the sting rays and the pelicans, had back yard fires with bacon and fried bread, and drove an hour up to Ulladulla one day to poke around. And see beautiful Mollymook beach - I hadn't been there since 1995. It hasn't changed much. Some keen beans were swimming or surfing but far too cold for me. We went up the light house and watched for whales for a while - saw some not too far out flipping and flopping! It is very exciting when you see the first spout, then a tail, or a fin, or whatever they call them. We didn't have binoculars but still got a good look at them. Next time we will be more prepared (beanie and scarf against the wind! And binoculars) and stay a bit longer.

I also made a skirt, in keeping with my new resolution that the coast will be for garment sewing. My new loom is completely not portable and I find it too hard to drag patchwork up and down to the beach. I always forget what I'm working on. So the coast is where I keep my patterns and dressmaking stuff. It's not like I need clothes at all, it's just to keep me occupied, so no harm if I pick at things slowly over the months. I quite enjoyed making the skirt although it's very plain - I will take a photo when I wear it. These are the boys on the breakwater at Ulladulla. It was such a beautiful day.

And here are the pelicans down at the boat ramp. Just to the left of us is the fish gutting table, so you can throw your fish guts and heads into the water for the pelicans to take. They can't pick them up off dry land though - we know because we watched them try, it is quite funny to watch - and the seagulls get those ones.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Two cotton scarves

Here are the two scarves I made from the five-metre mercerised cotton warp. Again, 24 epi and a simple pointed draft. The one on the left is plain weave, and the one on the right is a twill that goes one way then the other, which gives a sort of zigzag effect. 

Here's a close up of the twill one. The warp is just one colour - a pale blue. Weaving is so different from quilting with colours. You don't have to think about whether the colours match each other because they are not next to each other, they are actually mixed in together. Perhaps more like painting? I don't know, I don't paint.

Here is the plain weave one. I did different warps to mirror the weft - a thin green stripe, then pink, then blue, then a fat purple stripe and back again. It is quite light and dainty because again I think the 24 epi is too far apart for a plain weave in this cotton. Live and learn!

I used my new fringe twister to finish off the fringes. So much fun! And it's nice to have a professional finish. To be honest I don't know if it's much faster than doing little plaits, but I like the look of it. The fringe twister has instructions for adding beads and things to the fringe which sounds like fun ... maybe next time.

And here is it sitting on our new IKEA sofa. After 17 years of hard use we have finally gotten rid of the old one and found something new to sit on. It is very boring and is an enormous corner IKEA sofa in beige! Could we get any less exciting. But it is super comfortable and it was heaps of fun to put together. My husband stayed out of the way and removed the packaging while number one son did the tricky things with bolts and screws and I wrestled the cushions into the covers. Teamwork! We definitely had a feeling of satisfaction at the end. Getting rid of the old sofa it proving a problem though - we would be  happy to let it go for free to anyone who wants to come and pick it up but so far no takers. We might have to pay someone to take it away....

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

More from Hobart

The rest of the course went really well - I think I learnt something but it's hard to know what really sinks in. We have to do two written papers over the next few months - one smaller and one longer - so that will be the proper test. I'm using this as an expiriment to see if I want to do further study. I've been tossing up the last few years whether I do some post-graduate work, but I've always chickened out. It's hard when the kids are younger - although I know people do it - and whenever I get some spare time I would rather do something crafty than intellectual! But I shall see how the research part goes and if it's OK I might take it further. It's not going to make a blind bit of difference to my "career" so I really do have to want to do it for its own sake.

This is a house in Arthur Circus in Battery Point - I did a self-guided historic walking tour on our free day. Such funny tiny houses but apparently very expensive now. There are lots of lovely old houses, with beautiful views to the water.

This is the Aurora Australis - the icebreaker - much bigger than I thought it would be! I always thought antarctic boats were little tugboat things but that is, now I think about it, quite stupid. The only thing I know is that I will never set foot on it, unless it is dry dock, and maybe not even then.

And here are Tasmanians doing what Tasmanians do - sipping organic chai latte and listening to a three piece band outside an old theatre at a farmer's markets. I had a wonderful vegetarian empanada and sampled various cheeses. Awesome. Back to Canberra and work and reality today.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Hello Hobart!

Oh dear, another week since I posted! I've finished the next two mercerised cotton scarves but I can't take any photos because I am holed up in Hobart this week. Just when you think you can't get any further at the arse end of the world you wind up in Tasmania ... but I am not disrespecting it at all because it is a lovely city. I am doing a parliamentary law and procedure course at the university of Tasmania which sounds a bit dry but is actually quite interesting. There are a couple of dozen people doing the course and we all work in various parliaments in Australia and NZ, so it's kind of like a university course and kind of like a professional development course. Which is good - relevant mostly and lots of like-minded people to swap geeky stories with.

They're keeping us fairly hard at it but Hobart is small enough to be able to go for a walk at lunchtime and after lectures and see quite a bit. Above is Salamanca - a largely intact Georgian waterfront - convict labour and a very dodgy history but now all art galleries and hipster bars. Of course. Hobart managed to avoid a lot of unrestrained development in the twentieth centurty (poverty and neglect rather than good decisions, although I may be doing it a disservice) and is now very lovely to my Canberra eyes. 

We have been spending some time in Parliametn House as well as the university - it was originally the customs house and built in 1830 before becoming the parliament in 1856. It is much less ornate than the Victorian Parliament which is full-on mid-19th century neo-classical and has pillars and columns all over it. This is much more charming. Although very inconvenient, and most business is carried on in dodgy 1960s extensions. 

We have a free day tomorrow (Sunday) and I'm going to wander around some more and see what I can see. You would think there would be some wool shops and weaving shops but I can't seem to find much ... or nothing that's open on a Sunday. I'll start at the farmer's markets and see where my feet take me!

Saturday, June 24, 2017

The Theo Moorman table runner

Here - finally - are some photos of the finished table runner that I did at weaving classes. I've washed, dried and ironed it. The technique involves weaving a ground cloth - the cream - then putting supplementary threads just on the front, that are held down by very fine threads. When we did the sampler I liked the translucent effect that you get when you put a fine supplementary thread over the top - and what happened when you overlapped them. So I did overlapping squares.

I tried to go with a 1950s abstract vibe, in pastel colours. The background cloth is a cotton/silk mix which makes it nice and nubbly, although using two separate yarns as one was a bit of a pain. Some of the supplementary threads are just about invisible, but that's part of the effect I was aiming for ... no, not really. I didn't have a clue what I was aiming for.

And here is the back. No sign of the colours at all. I hand-stitched down the hem. It makes quite a nice cloth, I might try and buy some silk and see what happens. Perhaps just for the weft though, not the warp. Now I have to find a table to run it along. Table runner! Never used one in my life. It's not long enough for a scarf, so I might fold it up and put it in the cupboard.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Visitors, then working

It has been a nutso week at work as Parliament tries to wrap everything up before the long winter break. Which I am very much looking forward to - even in my gentle little corner there are waves of urgency washing up onto our sandy beach. Beach... I would love to be down the coast. Canberra has had some corking cold nights and freezing foggy days.

Last weekend we had visitors! My brother and sister-in-law came over from NZ for a weekend in Canberra followed by a week in Sydney. It was lovely to catch up - we did some very quiet things, like walking round the lake.

Saturday was a bit grey and grim, but Sunday was a beautiful day. We went to the bus depot markets for artisanal sourdough and handmade soap (actually neither of those things, but it gives you a pretty good idea of the markets) then dragged them up the hill to the trig point to see the landscape, then off to the outlet centre to look at sofas. Never say we don't know how to show people a good time!

It was wonderful to see them and we had a great weekend. They arrived and left on the train (my brother is a train driver) which added to the novelty. I go to the train station about once every three years ... one day I will actually get on.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Triple double chins

It's a tale of three selfies this week - two on the glorious south coast having a lovely walk on sparkling twenty degree afternoons ... and one stomping up to work on a foggy Canberra morning when it's exactly 0.5 degrees. I don't know why I look so worried in the selfies but I do know why I have so many double chins. Cheese, mainly, and chips.

It has been a crazy busy week at work which is my excuse for not blogging. I went down the beach just for one night to order the carpet. I had to measure the room myself because there was no way we were going to co-ordinate someone for a quote on any of the days when I could be there. But really, the room is a square, how hard can it be. They  made me sign something that said if it was horribly wrong it was all my fault, which I was happy to do. I measured it with a one-metre tape measure shaped like a panda from the dollar shop, so it should be fine.

I also patched the holes I'd made in the wall. It's not perfect, but at least it's not a great big hole. They were too big to use filler alone so I had to use the plasterboard mesh, which it is still slightly visible, which I think is bad, but it's done now. I replastered and repainted so it's better than it was ... but not perfect. I bought more brackets to re-hang the curtain rod but I didn't do it! I left it for my husband to do next time. I couldn't face the thought of stuffing it up again.

And this week has been extra crazy because we have to drop off and pick up Crutches Boy from school. He is much better though and prefers to walk short distances without his crutches. He was so happy to get the PICC line out, and onto tablet antibiotics. The wound is just about entirely healed and now only has a band-aid on it, which is awesome. We'll get him some physio and he should be back as good as new before you know it! What a relief.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Variety of twills

So this is my first effort - a variety of twills. I pretty much did a few inches of all the stitches in the book that would go on that particular draft (the way that it's threaded in the heddles. It's a pointed draft over six, note to self). And I changed colour every time I changed weave, so it's a bit motley.

It's a lot harder doing it at home than at uni with a very knowledgeable tutor to help you! I can see how many mistakes there are ... not just where I forgot what I was doing and did two rows the same (see weird pink line at right above) but also some of the warp threads weren't exactly the right tension, and some of the twills drew in a lot more than others. Which makes the edges wavey. The different textures are cool though. Quite a subtle effect.

And it's cotton so it crumples. I don't know why I didn't think of that but I wore it once to work to amaze my friends and confound my enemies and had to iron it before I could wear it again. Not actually super practical for a scarf. It's very light though and dainty. I might have not put it close enough together. I did a 24 epi sett (that's ends per inch, so 24 threads per inch, it's all in inches, just like quilting. Goddamn Americans, last imperial holdout) and it could have possibly gone a bit denser.

That's a couple of inches of plain weave at the bottom, and I plaited the fringe. I'm doing a much longer warp now - 6 metres - to make two scarves from the same warp. Just a plain draft but I might just pick one twill and stick with it.

My injured baby is rapidly improving, although exhausted from a couple of days back at school. They've given him a key to the elevators but I think it's all very difficult to hobble around from place to place. And the antibiotics are quite ferocious on his poor little system. Still, he is much better than he was.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Back at home

Number two son is much better back at home now - although apparently still technically in hospital because he still has IV antibiotics. He is on Hospital In The Home where nurses come round every day and check him out, and he still has to wear his wristband. Which is fine by us. Much better for him to be at home than in hospital and heaps easier to keep him entertained. If only we didn't have so many stairs! Poor little thing is going like a rocket on the crutches but stairs are a nightmare. Especially with an elderly cat and a fluffy dog winding around your feet as you go. He face-timed into a couple of his classes yesterday which was fun, and hopefully school next week. Still with the IV and the crutches, but the doctors reckon he can, so why not.

I have been doing a bit of weaving in the quiet times. I've set my loom up in a un-used corner of the family room and warped it up with the new (shiny) mercerised cotton that I bought.

And weaving with my nice new boat shuttle that I never used on the rigid heddle because I couldn't figure out a way of winding the bobbins. The winders that you buy are $120 which seemed a bit excessive for a simple piece of kit ... so I used the electric drill instead.

It is amazing! Really quick and efficient. And we already own one. I have been so keen that I've nearly finished the first one so I'll take it off and wet-finish it and take same photos. I'm sure I'll have some free time....

Friday, May 26, 2017

What a week

Over a week since I posted! Unfortunately it's not because of all the fabulous weaving and quilting creations I've been churning out ... it's because number two son has been in hospital, and it's been a lot of waiting, worrying, hanging about and (foolishly) googling. After the GP on Saturday night, who said go straight to emergency, and X-rays and scans, then going back home, then back to the GP, and more scans, then back to the GP on Wednesday when he was just getting worse and worse, who called an ambulance, then emergency and admission to hospital, then surgery yesterday and he finally seems to be on the up! It turns out he had an infection around his ankle joint - in the lining around the bone and a bit in the bone itself - so they have cleaned it out in surgery and now it is lots of antibiotics and rest, and fingers crossed a full recovery. Very stressful though because he was in so much pain, and  clearly not well at all. I was busy at work early in the week so my husband stayed home and did the running around, and now he's showing his face in the office while I look after my baby (ie make him brush his teeth finally) and look at this lovely view.

Actually it is a great view - not only is nice to have light and trees to look at but it's over the road from his old primary school. So he could automatically connect to the wifi, and there's plenty of coming and going to amuse a child who can't actually walk properly at the moment. He should be going home in the next couple of days - but I just cannot fault his care. He's on the adolescent ward of the new Women and Children's hospital - which is beautifully set up with all sorts of things to make them comfortable and feel at home -  and he has just been surrounded by doctors and specialists and they have taken it very seriously, and operated within a couple of hours of deciding on surgery. Which is great, but scary. And it's free - thank heavens for first world government health care. We never take it for granted.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Coral is an orphan

I made another orphan block quilt - it went together even quicker than the last one because I already had lots of the bits sewn together. And I knew what was at the bottom of the tub ... it was a journey of exploration last time. Into the wrinkly and thread-covered unknown.

I called it "Nice frock, Coral". To be said sarcastically I think. There is a small pieced "coral" in there somewhere from when I was doing a quilt that needed the word "coral" in it. I cannot remember why, or when, but there it is. It turned out a rectangular quilt - I was aiming for square, not that it matters.

It is quilted in big circles that (usually) touch each other. Like a massive pebble pattern. Here is a shot with the dog, helping me take photos. I was feeling quite sick yesterday so took the day off work and she followed me about, wondering what I was doing. Not much as it happened but when I napped, she napped. I am much better today - it's the drugs - I am pretty good at tolerating them but sometimes it is just like they all get together and make me feel awful. I'm not sure why, but it doesn't usually last more than 36 hours.

My weaving class has finished so my loom is back at home and I've started a new project. I ordered some 10/2 mercerized cotton sight unseen (you can't get many weaving yarns in Canberra, so it's all over the internet) and it is not weaving up at all in the way I thought it would. I think this will be the adventure of weaving as I try and get a clue what all these threads are and how they will weave in practice. I still have some of the wool that I dyed so I might go back to that - but I wanted to try different things. Might have to do LOTS more online shopping.