Saturday, 26 February 2011

A proud grandson, a book sample and are they still there?

I have to share a few of the photos I took at Alexander's going up to Cubs ceremony - he was so proud.  He had to be blindfolded and led through an obstacle course to show trust in his fellow cubs - I don't think they had much faith in the plank staying where it was meant to be somehow!

How he is a Cub, no longer a Joey

These are a couple of photos of the samples I have been working on from the free online workshops from Isobell Hall and Maggie Grey's new book.  They are lots of fun, but I don't seem to be able to settle to anything properly just at present..............

Perhaps because of the events over the ditch - I had an email on Thursday saying that Christchurch Botanic Gardens had sustained a huge amount of damage this time, losing lots of its very large trees because of liquefaction causing them to pop out of the ground, taking lots more trees, sculptures and structures with them as they fell

Not sure if these are still there - they were magnificent in November

Amazingly this old conservatory survived unharmed!
The whole tragedy is so awful it does not bear thinking about - we can only hope that somehow they can rebuild their shattered lives.  I would much rather face a category 5 cyclone than an earthquake - at least you have some warning, and when it is gone it is over, not repeating like all the aftershocks.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Final two fabric book pages

Ritva in finland made this lovely page for me with their national bird emblem, the swan on it.

This was my February page for Margreet in Holland.  Now I need to think about how I shall make them all into a book.  The next round of swaps won'tstart for another month or so yet - probably just as well, I am trying to do too many other bits and pieces.

I have joined the online classes for the Mixed media book which Isobel Hall and Maggie Grey wrote.  So far I have had more failures than successes with what I have been trying to do, but I am qwuite happy with this piece of silk paper made from silk hankies and with fragments applied to it.  Not sure wht I am going to do next with it yet..............I seem to have a lot of pieces like that at present, this year is flying past and I am just dithering and muddling and losing my way with what I am attempting!  I suppose it can only get better!
Our insurance is due for renewal in a few weeks and with all the disasters which have been occurring recently and with all the talk of what is and what is not covered by insurance I have been taking a much keener interest in the fine print of the policy.  I have also taken about 200 photos around the house to try to have pictures of everything we have.  Many years ago a friend of mine had the inside of her house gutted by fire.  To make a  contents claim on her insurance she had to itemise all the contents and put a value on the individual items as well as say when it was bought!!!  Try doing that for everything in your house when it is no longer there and you can't look at it.  We couldn't even remember some of the stuff which is only used once or twice a year.  I suppose that is what all the poor souls who were flooded or lost their houses in the cyclone have been doing.  We will put the photos and a list of contents in the bank deposit box and hope we never need to use it.
Time to get organised for the family to come fora BBQ in a couple of hours.  Cheers

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

How young we were

Today is our 43rd wedding anniversary - a lot of water under the bridge since that day, hopefully lots more waterto come yet - but not in the form of floods or cyclones!  We are going out to dinnertonight to celebrate - that is a rare occurrence for us, we usually eat at home.

I seem to have been dithering for the last couple of months, doing a bit of this and a bit of that but never really finishing anything - my creativity seems to be in limbo just at present.  I have played with felt making again and I am very happy with this piece.  I think I like making felt with bubble wrap, it is so quick.
I have joined the group doing online lessons from the latest book by Maggie Grey and Isobel Hall - haven't got far with that either, but should be able to show something in a couple of days, it is fun.

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Cyclone update

We have come through completely unscathed here in Mackay - it was really a non-event for us.  Cairns has been relatively unscathed as well, but spare a thought for the people in Innisfail, Mission Beach, Tully and surrounding districts - they have had a terrible battering.  I have added a link to see some photos, but if you google cyclone Yasi photos you will come up with lots of sites.

Many Innisfail and Mission Beach residents have only just recovered from cyclone Larry 5 years ago.  The cassowary feeding stations will need to be set up again for months as the big birds will starve to death otherwise.  Last time many wonderful volunteers cut up fruit and took it to feeding stations in the forest (sans leaves) to keep life as natural as possible for these gorgeous birds.

The cyclone season does not finish for another two months, let's hope there are no more.

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Crafty stuff and cyclones

This year the clever ladies from Three Creative Studios have a new challenge going - a creative colour palette.  Each month they will publish a picture with a palette of colours and our challenge is to make something using some or all of those colours.  Most ofthe participants are quilters so some interesting quilt pictures are emerging, but I am most definitely NOT a quilter.

This is my contribution - a notebook cover - I was quite pleased with it.

The technique of the month this time is disperse dyeing.  Their site has an excellent tutorial by Shiela Folgate.  I will try her techniques sometime soon, but I already had some painted papers (painted at least six months ago with Kraftcolour liquid dye) and this is the result ironed onto cheap panne velvet.  I love that stuff as a background.

I also love the way you can completely change the look of the fabric with different treatment on top.  The top case had a yellow chiffon overlay and the bottom one had a red chiffon overlay.

Thee back of the cases show the contrast even better.
I think we are getting our second miracle - the cyclone Yasi is going to miss us almost completely.  But I am very concerned for all our friends in its path further north.  This one is a monster, stretchinf across over 1,000 kilometres and with wind speed of about 280 km hour near the centre - and it is still deepening.  We certainly live in a country of extremes.  We got alll our window shutters out ready last night, but decided today to hold fire as we only look like having winds of about 60 - 70 km hour.  Our biggest worry is losing power.  All our power comes from further north and in all likelihood a feeder will be damaged, leaving us powerless for however many days it takes Ergon to find the fault and fix it.  I guess we shouldn't complain, we will at least still have a house - and we do have a small generator.  On that cheery note I am going off to read some other blogs.