Angels

Just in case you havent heard about it, or seen the logo splashed on peoples blogs across the world I thought I would tell you about an exciting (and now huge) swap happening over on my other blog.

Now the deal is that you can sign up to be a secret Stitching Angel and send some little stitching accessory gifts to your mortal or you can just visit my blog each week beginning 18th August for a FREE, yes FREE pattern from 7 top designers from around the world. You can see them all over here..

so just thought I’d let you know as it closes soon on the 15th August. Then the work begins for me to swap over 200 Angels..

hugs, Helen

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Published in: on August 5, 2008 at 5:35 pm  Comments (5)  
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Peace OR Quiet

Yesterday we decided to use some fuel and head upto the mountains to see some snow (a rare occurence here). We went close by to Myrtle Forest in the South of Tasmania. Unfortunately we were too late and the snow had all disappeared but we did have a lovely walk through the forest to the Myrtle Falls. As the snow was melting the falls were running beautifully and an easy 8 minute walk through the ferns and trees along a muddy track with many stone steps took us to the viewing platform. Miss Tilly felt she could go no further but with a little urging and some fun squelching in the mud in her rubber boots she made it to the top. Tessie Bessie was intent on getting to that clean fresh water and for the first time drank pure rain water from a stream with great excitement. We had to search along the creek access points where she could get to to drink without falling into the icy cold water. I didnt know whether to feel ‘alive’ and thankful for this clean abundance of water or guilty because she was getting so much from the experience – what have we been doing if it took almost 11 years for her to experience this?

Anyway, on the way back down the track to the car we had a discussion. I said, ‘Isnt it so peaceful here’ and Tess’ reply was ‘and quiet’.  Reflective thinking here- what is the difference between ‘Peace’ and ‘Quiet’. In her mind there was an obvious difference, an inbuilt not learned difference… although it is sometimes nice to have ‘quiet’ in our space it is ‘Peace’ we all want and work for in our lives and in the world.

Okay so we are getting a bit deep here, for my dad and for a bit of fun look closely at the pics below. I am not sure if this would live up to Tasmanian National parks OHS or public Liability standards…. 

We walked under it very quickly 🙂

hugs, and peace

Helen

 

 

Published in: on July 14, 2008 at 12:57 pm  Leave a Comment  
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puppies

MY girls so desperately want a puppy. We have never had a dog as a pet. We have had a cat, a rabbit and chickens who have all now sadly passed and have been pet free now for 3 years. I grew up on the farm with dogs where were never inside, never went to a vet, never got special attention, they were just workers. ( although I think secretly they meant a lot more to my dad than we realised). My head chef and partner has now developed an allergy to animals including many dogs and has said a big NO to having a pet. However we think we can wear him down. The girls have  developed a powerpoint presentation on the benefits of owning a dog. The costs involved, low allergy breeds and the work involved and who will do this work. They have begun a puppy fund to save money for its purchase. We do not have a big yard – our whole back yard is a swimming pool, and will not have an inside dog so the choices are limited to small, child friendly, low allergy, low cost but cute and cuddly breeds….. any advice or recommendations most appreciated.

A funny story……yesterday Tessie Bessie had the opportunity to try abseiling with Girl Guides (a side note; she hated it and will NEVER do it again -takes after her mum here with heights). A friend with a small dog on a gorgeous pink lead was there and Tilly decided to take her for a walk down the hill. Now Tilly is only 3 but the dog is also very small – about the size of a loaf of bread – The dog took her for the walk, gravity had something to do with it but she could not stop. The dogs mum yelled out ‘grab onto the post’ and there was Tilly arms wrapped around a sign post still holding onto the lead trying not to be pulled any further downwards, hard to describe but a very funny sight…..

I know many of you will have puppies who are just as special as your children. So I hope you enjoy stitching them into your quilt. Perhaps you could add their paw print to the back of the block or on one of your spare blocks.

hugs, Helen

Published in: on July 7, 2008 at 10:15 am  Comments (4)  
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mmmm chocolate.. will have to share

okay, who doesnt love chocolate? I have to admit is is one of my two major vices in life and takes the shine out of any diet I attempt….. but its good for you isnt it?

Check out Sarah’s new blog at http://www.ifonlyihadchocolate.blogspot.com/ She has finally joined the ranks of blogging….hi Sarah.

We are very fortunate (or perhaps not) to live in the same town as the main Cadbury Chocolate factory. Now anyone who has ever visited Tasmania has visited the Chocolate factory. Unfortunately they have currently closed down their factory and tasting tours.

So for todays block I thought we could share chocolate recipes. Leave your favourite in a blog comment and I will choose the best one for a little suprise gift – its a suprise cos I dont know what it will be yet, but I can sure find something fantastic for the winner. Mention this giveaway on your blog and leave your recipe here by Friday of this week.

Now to my recipe:

from my Christmas Truffles book:

Double choc orange balls

250g/80z crushed sweet biscuits (graham crackers)

3/4cup desiccated coconut

4 tablespoons cocoa

395g/14oz can sweetened condensed milk

2 tablespoons Grand Marnier or orange liqueur

extra coconut or chocolate shavings for rolling in.

Mix all ingredients. refridgerate until firm. Shape in to balls, roll in coconut or chocolate shavings. Refridgerate.

hugs, Helen

Published in: on June 30, 2008 at 7:29 pm  Comments (6)  
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Party time and now strawberries

Okay, okay, so  I have already done Party time. Sorry about that, so to keep up with our weeks I have added Strawberries for you. Why you may ask have I picked this one now? Well I was lucky enough to meet in person a wonderful lady and customer of mine at Quilt market this year. We have been emailing now for a couple of years and this was her first trip to market. Her store logo and theme is strawberries, so in honour of Christel, this is the block of the week.

and this is Christel!

Well I am finally home again and have found the picture for you. Travelling the world sounds so exciting and it can be but gee it is nice to be home. So it was party time here on my return. So nice to come back to my bed, my beautiful girls, my dh with champagne ready and my parents here also helping out. If I met you anywhere in my travels it was lovely, if I didnt, maybe next time. One thing is for sure, there are going to be a lot more joinging us here on the blog stitching away on Nice People and nice things from across the world.

 

Well I thought I had done this post before I left home but it appears that there is nothing here for you……so I do apologise but we are going to have to put two photos up when I return home next Monday. I am currently in San Fransisco and catch the plane home tommorrow night yayyyy! It has been a long and interesting three weeks but I will tell you all about it next week. We should have lots more Nice People joining us here soon. It will be party time for us all.

hugs Helen

Published in: on May 22, 2008 at 4:16 pm  Comments (1)  
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Spring

So here I am writing to you from Portland Oregon USA. We are visiting for the Spring quilt market. As I write this draft (2 weeks ago in Hobart) it is expecting to snow tonight so I am very much looking forward to going back to my favourite season of Spring again. And to be able to witness it in a completely new part of the world to me, I am very thankful. I hope to get a few minutes to wander around town and take some photos for you which I shall load on my return. Today, Monday we have just arrived here from Salt Lake City and have much to do in preparation for displaying our proud Aussie designs to the world on Thursday for a few days. So hugs to all, happy stitching and if you too are experiencing lovely spring weather, make the most of the sunshine, the bursting of new life in the gardens and parks and the happiness of children coming out of a cold winter…

Helen

Published in: on May 14, 2008 at 2:12 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Kittens

Well as promised it is time to meet our hosts. This is Arabella, she is the house princess

and this is Boudreaux – he’s a little shy

and this is the master Gryffiindor

and this is the view from the back deck. It will never cease to amaze me looking out at this from every vantage point in Salt Lake City. I just cannot come to terms with it, its like someone is holding a big stage backdrop up in front of you all of the time. Its actually quite warm here 80degrees so of course I have packed all of the wrong clothes but isnt this just magical…??

hugs for today (Tuesday arvo here, Wednesday morning at home)

Helen

I had to choose kitties this week as we are staying at our dear friends Peggy and Dereks in Salt Lake City. Actually I have written this draft before I left and I think I have now just gotten off the plane after how many hours of flying so will attempt to add some photos for you.

They have the 3 most precious kitties and we are entrusted to them for one whole day until Peggy and Derek arrive home. So Gryffiindor, Boudreaux and Arabella will be our welcoming committee and they are just gorgeous… We first met them whilst staying with Peggy and Derek last year for Quilt Market. They are the ‘nicest’ couple and welcomed us into their home. Above and beyond their hospitality, Peggy drove us around town, collecting things for market, printing, shopping, sightseeing and setting up for market. Aren’t quilters across the world just the most amazing, generous people? It never ceases to amaze me. I hope I can return the favour one day.

Next week will come from Portland Oregon as we set up for quilt market. til then, happy stitching!

hugs, Helen

Published in: on May 6, 2008 at 12:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Shoes

Have new shoes, still busy packing, packing, ready for the big trip. I have 5 days to go to be ready arrgghh! My one pair of shoes has to do me for the whole trip in all manner of situations so I had to choose carefully. No room for 20 pairs of shoes for every occasion so hopefully no-one will be looking at my feet. Plus I always seem to see shoe stores everywhere on our USA trips so hopefully I will have room to bring a couple more pairs home! after all, who doesn’t love shoes? Can we ever have too many?

So over the next two weeks I will be reporting in from different parts of the world. Hope you can keep up with me and keep up with your blocks… So many of you from around the world are now stitching along with us, dont forget to join in here on the blog with a comment, a post, a photo of your work or something nice you have done. Visit Country Chix and see the Nice Thing they have been talking about.. I haven’t had a chance to try it out yet but will get to it when I this preparation madness is over.

hugs to all for this week, ‘see’ you in the US of A

Helen

Published in: on April 28, 2008 at 6:50 pm  Comments (2)  
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Stitching

On Saturday as busy and panicked as I am getting ready for the big market trip to the USA I took a day out for myself to attend the Quilted Crows Autumn Gathering. What better than a lovely country hall, beautifully decked out with all things stitched, Great tutors such as Kerry Gillespie and Lynette Anderson and of course Leonie and Deidre from The Quilted Crow and 75 likeminded passionate stitchers. So my block for the week just had to be ‘Stitching’. I spent the day finishing the binding on my Diametrically Deduced quilt which is supposed to be in the US by the 26th so couldnt do any new projects today. I had my camera but only took pics of the projects so have included a couple here to tempt you. Their next Gathering is in September with Anni Downs and Natalie Bird… dont want to miss that one..

this was one of Kerry’s new patterns and it was named Milly, Tilly and Molly – no she did not know my girls are Molly, Tess and Tilly but said if she had she would have named them that – such a coincidence to be so close. Think I’ll have to file this pattern to make ‘one day’ for sure.

This was Deidre’s doorstop pattern. A young girl at our table made this one on the day and it looked so good. It was her first attempt at Buttonhole stitch and she had lots of teachers giving her advice and knoweldge…

Sunday saw myself, Miss Tessie and some wonderful friends busy busy packing patterns to ship this week in readiness for my visit to HMQS and Spring Market. I though you may like to see the work that goes into packing the NPNT packs for you – a very big job… but I still think the results are worth it.

The boxes from the printer have glue applied, folded and stuck and then the sticker attached. Tess is good at this bit.

The cards are printed and cut. And then they had to be made into the stacks of 54 – 9 cards from each pile in 6 different boxes from the printer – very easy to get mixed up and we seemed to have a few stranded cards leftover – woops…. The girls packed 500 sets today – lots left for me to package still, my dining table may be unuseable for a little while yet…

 The instructions sheets are printed and folded individually – Colleen made a good dent in these, I finished them at 11pm last night.

The box, the instructions and the cards are then packed into a zip lock bag for storage and shipping. Boxes are stacked with them, now storage space has to be found in my ever bulging studio.. 

Published in: on April 21, 2008 at 1:34 pm  Comments (1)  
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Bubble Bath

 

As our cooler weather begins to sneak its way in now I love to have a huge bubble bath… Now I know thats not politically correct with our dire shortage of water in Australia but that is one reason I choose to live in Hobart. However we do limit them and really appreciate the fact that we are able to have one when the time comes. With our new renovation a few years ago we were lucky to have quite a large bath so mine is not often peaceful and relaxing, more likely shared with at least two other eager participants…. We have had all four girls in there but the eldest is now a little more modest.. and its getting a bit squishy!

So Bubble Bath had to be included in my ‘Nice things’ category as there is nothing more decadent and special… Sometimes I do get it to myself with a nice vanilla candle, soft music, champagne  – well actually I cannot remember the last time but I am sure it did happen once…. we can dream…

I have never tried this but I thought with Google around there must be some bubble bath recipes available. You bet there are…. hundreds, here are a couple I may try

http://www.pioneerthinking.com/cherrybubble.htmlCherry Berry Bubble Bath Recipe
By Pioneer Thinking
 
Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unscented shampoo
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (regular table salt is fine)
  • 15 drops cherry fragrance oil

Directions:

Pour shampoo into a bowl and add water. Stir gently until well mixed. Add salt, and stir until mixture thickens. Add cherry fragrance and place in decorative bottle. Can also be used to make a body wash

Note: If you can’t find unscented shampoo, you can use a mild baby shampoo in its place.

http://www.pioneerthinking.com/ab_bubblebath.html

Sweet Dreams Bubble Bath

This bubble bath has lavender and patchouli oils to relax you before bedtime. Use soft music and lighted candles in your bathroom for a soothing effect.

6 drops of lavender oil
3 drops of patchouli oil
1 quart of distilled water
1 bar of castille soap. (4 oz. Bar)
4 ounces liquid glycerin

Directions: mix the water, soap and glycerin together and stir. Now add your essential oils to the mixture.

Cold Season Bubble Bath

This bubble bath will help you breathe easier, with eucalyptus oil to ease the cold congestion. This is perfect for the cold season.

6 drops of eucalyptus oil
3 drops of spearmint oil
3 drops of peppermint oil
1 quart of distilled water
1 bar of castille soap. (4 oz. Bar)
4 ounces liquid glycerin

Directions: mix the water, soap and glycerin together and stir. Now add your essential oils to the mixture.

Pure Sunshine Bubble Bath

This citrusy bubble bath will cheer you up and energize you. Perfect for a morning bath or use after exercising.

6 drops of orange oil
4 drops of grapefruit oil
3 drops of lemon oil
1 quart of distilled water
1 bar of castille soap. (4 oz. Bar)
4 ounces liquid glycerin

Directions: mix the water, soap and glycerin together and stir. Now add your essential oils to the mixture.

Love Potion Bubble Bath

This bubble bath will put you in a romantic mood. All of the ingredients are considered known aphrodisiac – so look out!

6 drops jasmine oil
3 drops rose oil
3 drops vanilla oil
6 drops ylang ylang oil
1 quart of distilled water
1 bar of castille soap. (4 oz. Bar)
4 ounces liquid glycerin

Directions: mix the water, soap and glycerin together and stir. Now add your essential oils to the mixture.

 

mmm do you know what Castille soap is? Perhaps you have your own Nice recipe you could share.

Let me know if you try any of these

hugs, Helen

Published in: on April 14, 2008 at 5:09 pm  Leave a Comment  
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