October 5, 2017

I have been a bit Quiet lately. . .

But WOW - 
What can I say?


I am sitting on top of a mountain in Switzerland
Eating Chocolate Cake!




August 30, 2017

"I never knew just what it was - and I guess I never will"

Yesterday was my Parent's Wedding Anniversary.
They would have been married 64 years.

I normally take Mum out for lunch as Dad always forgot - so there was no reason to not continue the tradition just because Dad is no longer with us.

I would have liked to have taken her for High Tea somewhere but she was insisting on just a Toasted Sandwich and Coffee.

I have long since learnt not to argue with my Mother - so Toasted Sandwich it was ...


We started the day by taking him flowers and ended it at an Op Shop.

I really don't enjoy going to Opportunity Shops but occasionally you find something - Interesting...


Like THIS!


Any ideas?
I am open for suggestion.

With no holes in the sole-plate, I don't think it was a Steam Iron.
I think it may be an oil or spirit heated Iron.


But at $65 I think I will leave it there for a serious collector!




August 18, 2017

And now it's time to say ...

Hello there
Welcome to the Family
I am your Great (Awesome) Aunt


Looking forward to meeting you in person and having lots of cuddles.

Great Nephew #3 
arrived safely 10:00 am




August 11, 2017

And The Lord gave us a beautiful day , , ,


Time to say - "See you later Dad".

It was not a time for sadness, It was a time to celebrate his life
He would have been so chuffed
He loved a party 
especially when he was the centre of attention.

Matthew 25:21



August 1, 2017

Goodnight Dad - Sleep Well



Sunday night I said Good night to my Dad for the last time.


29th April 1923 - 30th July 2017




July 28, 2017

MY Istanbul

Last November I posted "Just a Peek" of my Istanbul Quilt
I wanted to keep the finished quilt 'under wraps' as it was to be entered in a Quilt Show.


The centre Medallion was a design by Tamsin Harvey from her book Constantinople Quilts - which was exactly what my DS#1 requested for his Wedding Quilt
- BUT it was only a Wall hanging!

I needed the quilt to be Queen size - so after talking to a lot of very knowledgeable people,
I set the Medallion on point and proceeded to design my own corner elements for the setting triangles



Today it was awarded the Convenors Award
at the Victorian Quilt Showcase 2017



I didn't know Ribbons came in Pink -
But they do!


As well as a Certificate and Rosette

I received a sponsorship Prize of a Moda Layer Cake and 3 Charm packs in Civil War Fabrics from PK Fabrics

and a 12 month subscription to Australian Patchwork and quilting Magazine.

Looks like my next project may be taken care of!

* * * * *

The Victorian Quilt Showcase is at the 
Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
 (affectionately known as 'Jeff's Shed') 
1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf Melbourne - Opposite Crown Casino
and runs until Sunday 30th July




July 26, 2017

SCQuilters Mystery BOM - 2016

UFO # 3
Finished!

My post from last week was left with a dilemma - I had a pile of fabric squares and no instructions.

I spent a LOT of time playing in EQ7 with these 9 patches

Should I make them up like this?

Or like this?

I thought this looked better.
Is it what the designer had in mind?

No idea!
But after 'wasting' so much valuable sewing time I settled on this design




And so now I can happily place this UFO into the "Quilt when you have the time - or when it is needed" pile.

Maybe I will use it to showcase (practice) using my Westalee Rulers - then it can be a true sample Quilt!



July 19, 2017

Shooting Down UFO's

- almost...

I pulled this one out from last year.

It was a Mystery BOTW

Block of the Week?
or maybe it was a Block of the Whenever

Anyway it was a mystery


It was started and put aside
and started again

And then I got a set of Block Loc rulers and it came out to play again...

(BTW -
They are awesome and worth their place in my "Tool for a job" box.)

And then I got to Block 9

Um - looks like I will be 'winging it' from here as I do not have any more instructions.

Oh well - It remains a Mystery right to the very end!







July 13, 2017

PIGS can fly . . .

Twelve Moons by Robert Kaufman

I can remember
where I bought this panel...
and I can remember
who I bought it from...
I just can't remember
WHEN I bought it!




Needless to say it has been sitting in my cupboard for a while
and now it is finished!

(Well, it will be once it is quilted - but I usually leave that part until the quilt is actually needed.)

Now to find another PIG to set free ;)





June 25, 2017

Happy Birthday to Me ....

This year I hit a milestone Birthday and was determined to not let it pass without doing SOMETHING special.

So I packed everyone into the car and headed for the Mornington Peninsula.

Our first stop was at the Arthur's Seat Chairlift.
There has been a Chairlift at Arthur's Seat since 1960 and after years of problems and accidents it was finally replaced in 2016 with a new European style all weather Gondola system.

Although as a child, I spent many weekends holidaying at Dromana, I have never ridden the lift (sitting on a seat swinging in the breeze was not my 'thing' even way back then). So when I heard it was being upgraded I couldn't wait to check it out.

The verdict - not nearly as terrifying as the Cairns/Kuranda Skyrail.
And one day - I will get to ride one of these things when it is not raining!

Next stop was the township of Flinders - it sits on the 'other side' of the Peninsula where Western Port Bay meets Bass Strait.

The township has certainly changed since I was there last and afternoon tea was a delight at Mornington Peninsula Chocolates.

There was one last place I wanted to visit before we headed home.

I do love lighthouses!

To me they symbolise safety and protection and steadfastness.
And remind me of all my favourite childhood Sunday School songs.

This one is at Cape Schanck and has been faithfully protecting all those who pass by her since 1859.

I did fully intend to be well on the way home before dark but, time got away from us and. . .
- well - 

What a perfect way
 to finish the day!








June 13, 2017

Lactose Free Ice Cream anyone?

I have mentioned in other posts that we have a member of the family who is Lactose Intolerant and that the one thing he misses the most is decent Ice Cream.

So, once upon a time, I bought a Compressor Ice-cream machine (so I didn't have to pre-freeze the canister) and tried to make his favourite dessert.

Over the years these efforts have been a bit 'hit and miss'...


But with every failure there is learning -

and as my DD said to me the other day "I have just learnt 200 ways NOT to do something!"


Finding a REALLY good recipe that you can adapt is also an advantage.

As is the range of good quality Lactose Free products that are now available



I don't bother making plain Vanilla anymore as we have an awesome commercial Vanilla Ice cream readily available in the supermarket.

So when I had left over Cream from another recipe - the only question that had to be asked was "What Flavour?"

Choc - Mint please?

Done!

The recipe says "Keeps for 3 days"....
Um....
Not round here it didn't!


While the machine was out I also made a beautiful Chai Spiced flavour and served it with warm Apple Crumble - YUM!





June 8, 2017

It is a Good feeling when . . .

You can finally say -
It is finished!


Quilted with an all over pattern it is the cosiest quilt I have made
and an even better feeling to know it is just in time for what is going to be a very cold Winter!


* * *
May 18th 2016
I started Allietare as a challenge to see just how long it would take me to make a Bonny Hunter Quilt - then life got in the way and it became a WIP.
A year later I can happily hand it over to DS & DDIL 
(who are still patiently waiting for their Wedding Quilt!)





May 16, 2017

Now THAT is scary. . .

I think I am Up to Date!

Allietare is at the Quilters, 
the binding on Istanbul is done 
and I have caught up with Jinny Beyer's Casablanca Mystery.  

Which leaves me peering in boxes for a UFO to tackle... because it is either that or start something new!

Ahhh - decisions, decisions!





April 29, 2017

Happy Birthday Dad


A couple of years ago he said
 all he wanted for his Birthday
was for someone to tell him
 how old he was...


Today I wrote on his card
94 Today WOW !

April 28, 2017

The reason for the visit

Was to bring a Mum Hug and some much needed and wished for supplies (that can't be bought in France) to our beautiful Girl.

She now has a coveted stash of her favourite Shampoo, Tea, Vegemite and Tim Tams.

A downpour during one of our excursions led to the chance discovery of a bright new Rainbow Umbrella which brought a smile to her eyes on a grey day (she left hers at home in Melbourne).


And of course we had to get a photo of her in front of her Lab at the University

(Note to self - next time take a wide angle lens so I can get ALL the building's title in the shot!)



We walked for miles - as my Fit bit will attest to



and crossed many Bridges, many times - none more stirring than when we came across a Pro-European Movement rally on the bridge across the Rhine.
When we drew close to the centre of the group they all began to sing "Song of Joy" and in 3 different languages. It was inspirational!

And this brings us to the point when we have to say not Goodbye but Au Revoir to Strasbourg
and like my friend here that sits in the square beside Notre Dame always looking up to the heavens and the beautiful Cathedral Spire
we are reluctant to leave and have left part of our hearts behind in this incredible city.



* * * * *








There is a saying ...

"That in Strasbourg, your eye will never tire."
They are not wrong
Here are just a few of the views and treasures we found.


We just called him "The Bubble Man"
Delighting the children in the City Square.


Lycee International les Pontonniers
a very seriously beautiful looking High School
(It would make a great movie set - Harry Potter goes to France?)


Picture Postcard Perfect View of the Ille River 
and a few of the bridges that cross it


Notre Dame from the Old City Wall

Is that a Dragon on the rooftop?
No - Just a very artistic waterspout!


and in a shop window - Fabric
What kind of Quilter am I, if I don't keep an eye out for Fabric?
Yep - found some and, What is it displayed on? Aussie boomerang Fabric!
maybe someone is telling me it is time to go home?


April 27, 2017

Cakes, and other delicious things

I must admit that a travelogue is not complete without showing off some of the local cuisine.  But being a Cake Decorator I was drawn to the wonderful Sweet things around.

IN my defence - a lot of these goodies only gave my camera calories!! ;)

Breakfast:

The perfect way to start a day is having Breakfast appear on the table and not making it yourself!

I learnt to order a petit déjeuner and then to order just A Croissant and Tea - with milk

The little bakery around the corner soon became our favourite spot.


Morning Tea


Ohhhh Strawberries!
So beautifully sweet

I wanted to buy a bucket of these and go home and bake - but...
With beautiful light cakes to try
I didn't need to !


Things in windows...
Nougat and Gingerbread Cakes by the kilogram in Market stalls

A Cake with my Name on it - entreating me to buy
 (I didn't succumb).

Eclairs and Macarons to die for!



And to finish off - There must, of course be Dessert!

Best ever Creme Brulee - I stopped looking once I found it!
Hot Chocolate Fondant and Vanilla Ice cream

A masterpiece of an Apple Crumble in a Restaurant only open a week.
And Black Forest Parfait
- Oh My!! Oh Wow !!


And the best bit?
With all the walking we did
I actually LOST 3 kg!




April 26, 2017

Street Life

Street Photography is an interesting hobby for a lot of photographers and wandering through someone else's town gives an opportunity to practice taking some 'out of the ordinary' photographs.

BEGGARS -
The scriptures say
"The poor we have with us always" (Mark 14:7)

The thing we noticed was, like the town's Buskers, the beggars had "their spot" and were rarely seen elsewhere in town.


BUSKERS -

Now THESE guys were GOOD -
all the Buskers were very talented from the haunting sounds of a solo Vintage Tenor Saxophone played by an elderly Gent...

And the melody of a Squeeze box that picked out a polka and lightened our steps

to an Organ Grinder with an incredible voice
(no monkeys here!)

And then there was the Trio

They sang rousing Russian tunes and well known popular songs (in French) in the sunshine
and in the rain.
(We even bumped into them in Offenburg - Germany)


The only thing they seemed to miss was what was going on around them on Easter Sunday morning -
As they belted out
"The Carnival is Over",

this young man dropped to his knee
- ring in hand.


She said "Yes" and for them the Carnival is definitely NOT over!

BICYCLES -

Strasbourg is a city that certainly has embraced the Bicycle!

They are everywhere!
we saw them chained to fences and trees and each other
we dodged them in the lane ways and on the main roads


We even found a nest of them outside the Train Station...

And I don't think I heard a bell ring in anger the whole week.

And I must not finish this post without making reference to the (to us) BIZARRE Parking practices seen around town.

We best described it as ...
"If I fits - I sits"

(yes, this car IS parked diagonally across the corner of an intersection.)