Thursday, October 31, 2013

Finishing a Fascinator

My not quite finished fascinator. Just need to do a bit of curling and the centre
Last night I joined several other like minded souls and learnt how to make a fascinator. I learnt that it takes a while and you need quite a lot of stuff!!!
Some of the amazing bits and pieces

Lots of material and hard work.

It was at the Make Cafe in Christchurch, always a good place to be. My fascinator is by no means finished as there are several steps and it took a while, but it looks good on the hat that I am going to wear to Kerryn and Barry's wedding.

Next time though I will make it with smaller petals.

I link to these places.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Have you ever been bitten by an Octopus?

The Octopus before it bit him.
Well Jakob did and it was NOT a good look. We were in Dunedin for the long weekend and canoeing at Purakaunui Inlet. A man was floundering and his Mum knew Ruth. So when they found a baby octopus they brought it down for us to see. It crawled over everyone's hands and then when Jakob got it, it was obviously too much, it bit him!! It was a little baby, half the size of Jakob's hand but you could not get it off and Jakob was screaming. So I rushed him to the seawater and he put his hand in and the Octopus swam away. It made a huge puncture mark and then the finger it had attached to started swelling, and swelling and looking red. So soaking a hand in seawater and using the cold milk bottle as ice and pressure, the pain took about 45mins to stop and the swelling about 1.5 hours. Far not let an octopus bite you!!

Apart from that we climbed up Signal Hill, using a very graduated track so I could do it.

Interesting face painting

We spent a couple of hours hydrosliding at Moana Pool. Watched a movie, ate good food and had a busy time. Visited a Fete at the Lady Thorn Rhododendron Dell. Where the boys got free face painting.
On the ridge on Signal Hill

On the way home we stopped at Riverstone Kitchen and had a lunch/dinner at 2.30pm. Oh it was sooo good. We were so busy eating that we forgot to take food photos. But enjoyed wandering the grounds and the kids loved the huge adventure playground.

The amazing Riverstone Kitchen Gardens

More of the gardens

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The boys loved the Karts

Friday, October 25, 2013

A treat in a milk bottle

Today was hot after school and the boys were grumpy. So I pulled out the little 300ml glass cream bottles that I bought when I was on my trip last weekend. Made a gorgeous milkshake with icecream in it. Served it up a little retro. Refreshing.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

It may not represent much to you....

But this vinyl down in the hall cupboard and our wardrobe represents lots to me:
The hall cupboard

  • It means the the floor cracks are finally fixed. 3 years after the first earthquake, so finally the end of waiting to get things done.
  • 4 hours hard slog. I am sitting here feeling quite trashed. I had to sand the floor first then measure and cut the tiles to fit, then glue them down. A lot of the tiling is in under fixed shelving and so this has been hands and knees and getting into tight corners.
  • Money saving - by doing it myself it means we save money
  • I will get some of my room back - I can now get some of the clothes and shoes that are all over the place back into the wardrobe.
  • A marked improvement in my DIY skills, a lot more accurate than other tasks I have undertaken
So onward and upward as I wait to be able to paint the bathroom. Maybe I will soon be able to get the carpet layer in to do the hall and our bedroom. Wow - we wont know ourselves.
Our bedroom wardrobe

Sunday, October 20, 2013

On top of Mt Fyfe at 8.50am

Well yesterday the boys and Aaron set off in the morning to tramp up to Mt Fyfe hut in the seaward Kaikoura Range. Then on Sunday they were to be met by a group of our friends for the return trip.

In the morning the boys were both excited. It was the first time they have carried all their own gear and they felt and looked like real trampers. I got many calls during the day updating where they were. If you go to Aaron's blog

you can see the view from the hut.

By the last call at night the hut was overflowing. DOC replaced a big old hut with a little one! Typical. Sleeps 8. But 16 were there last night. Many camping outside (with no tents). So to give someone a bunk the boys topped and tailed.

This morning I get a call at 8.50am as they are on the summit. They woke up to watch the sunrise, had breakfast and tramped!!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Upcycling a bean bag

For Aaron's birthday I made a new bean bag cover as a square seat(poof) rather than the traditional bean bag shape. His bean bag has been redone a few times as the beans get old and tired. This will now be the third style and I think we are onto a winner.
yucky yucky yuck. I pulled the bean bag from behind the sofa and all I saw was yucky mould, manky tired bean bag.

So I made a cube bean bag. It works as a footstool when sitting on the sofa. It is a great seat to sit on and Xbox. It is clean!!!

I made one side straight red, just for a change if you want.

I was impressed with myself as I have only ever put piping into something and that was before Jakob was born - 11years ago! So I made the piping myself using the red material from the feature side and some cord I had hanging around. It sat really well when sewing and I am thrilled with the result.

The only thing that is still a mess is the garage where I swapped the beans from one bag to the other. There are A LOT of little polystyrene balls floating around our garage. It was not an easy task!

Happy Birthday Aaron.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Our school holiday break away

In the second week of the school holidays we took a four day break away to our favourite place. Geraldine Farmyard Holiday Park. My sister came too with her kids and we had side by side cabins.

While we were away our bathroom was meant to be done. The shower and handbasin had been ripped out, but sigh......... nothing happened. But it is all go this week and quite good to be here to answer questions and make last minute changes (poor builder!!!) that I seem to be doing a bit of!!
Good old Tinkerbell is the boys favourite but really had enough!! She tried to bowl Eli over so that she could get to the hitching rail. Not bad for an old girl. 
Here she is starting to take things into her hoof. 
Mr show off made lots of noise but did display a lot - really rather gorgeous. 
The farmyard park is so relaxing for adults, Anna and I got a lot of little knitting sessions in. A bit of rhubarb cake and tea. The kids just took off for hours at a time. Most of the time was playing mini golf or in with the baby guinea pigs. 
The weather was great but these were essential footwear. 
The boys had great boys time. 
Great walks were had. The traditional photo of the photographer taking a photo. I had a couple of awesome walks by myself and this lovely family one. 
Jakob the tramper who can zoom up mountains - way in advance - unlike Eli who was pretty grumpy about walking today. 
What a gorgeous destination 
Some happy and some not so happy

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Great start to a cold and rainy day

It took a while to get up this morning, all snuggly in bed with the rain outside. But once I did and ran around putting things in the garage so the place was clear for the builder- it was only 8.50am. Checked the hot tub and it was still 37oC after we let the fire still tick over last night. So I made a latte and jumped in the hot tub, all by myself!! It was quiet an peaceful, heaven. The boys were watching TV so they left me alone.

Now the boys are in it. I have to say that it is a great cold day activity.

What is with the weather? I had decided that summer was almost here and have taken the electric blanket off the bed, taken off the flannelette sheets etc. And yesterday I planted a lot of stuff in the garden. Ah well - Murphys Law I guess.

Decadent ways to eat fresh Raspberry Jam

Eli's job today was to make Raspberry Jam. He followed my recipe as it is super quick and always works.
Our local fruit stall is selling the frozen berries cheap. $10 for 1.5kg. As raspberry jam is the one that is consumed the fastest here, we run out very quickly.

Although the raspberries are now setting on the canes I thought this would give us a pre season boost. Oh and it is sooooooo yummy.

It made six 375g jars and there was a little leftover. The boys were just eating it straight from the pot. So I got a little bit of vanilla icecream in a bowl and poured the hot jam over it. What a treat (after all it is the school holidays).

I link to these places, and this recipe idea will link up with Anne at Domesblissity.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Camping and a new quilt

Ahhh.... Camping again.
Lighting fires because it is not too dry so we wont start a forest fire

Having Milo and making damper on a stick, oozing with butter and jam in the hole made by the stick. Tasting of smoke, damper and a bit of charcoal.

The boys getting to stay up really late. Eli all cuddly with Dad having spent four hours building and then burning a big fire.
I really liked the mood shot but on my cheap camera I could not get the exposure to stay open long enough.

flannelette quilt
The new quilt on our bed. Now we all have a cuddly quilt for camping. Made from old PJ's and flannelette sheets, so warm and toasty.

The boys have their own bed but as usual somehow everyone migrates to our bed in the morning for our hot drink, reading and cuddles.

I guess the boys bunks aren't as spacious as our gorgeous queen size bed.

Ahh... We only went for one night.... away for 26 hours. But talk about relaxing. It is amazing what a night away can do. Fabulous weather really helps too.

So much has gone on in the last few weeks and the next couple of weeks will be hectic at home. But in the end we will have a fixed house. I have the next week off and am looking forward to relaxing some more, getting gardening done and then heading off with the boys for the last few days to camp again.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Out with the old and in with the new

Well, I have not been very active in craft and blog land over the last bit and I expect that not to change for a couple of weeks. Yesterday after work I had 30 minutes and so went to de-stress and had a coffee at the Addington Coffee Co-op. Afterwards I went to the Salvation Army shop in Addington and found these fabulous shoes for $5

What is going out? - EQR work has been nightmarish and my boss has made the choice to limit work with them. So out go half my hours.
What is coming in? Well it means more time to Op Shop (though less money to do so!! hmm the conundrum). But also time to finally try and get the mess that is the garden sorted.

What is going out? Our EQR work is finally being done on our house, so out goes the bathroom next week. But that also means I have to remove the carpet in the hall and bedroom and the vinyl in the bathroom, plus all the bathroom stuff. Try to do that this week while Aaron has been called away to Nelson for work. Juggle the boys for the school holidays and try to visit every EQR house our work is doing as they are auditing every site operated by their Kaiapoi hub - Far out!!!!
What is going in? A new vanity, a new shower, a fixed floor crack and then lots of painting for me (as you can see my less hours at work is going to be well and truly used at home.)

What is going out? - Winter
What is coming in? - Camping time, family time, gardening time, all the painting etc I have to do time!! and hopefully in amongst all this I am going to get a bit more me time (Well maybe in a month or so).

So onward and upward and enjoy the summer then look for some new work in the Autumn.

Thinking of you all - especially Deb as she has and is going through the same stuff. Anyone who does not read her blog should!!! (Well in my personal opinion)

Linking to Op Shop Show off and other places here.

A gorgeous break in Rarotonga

Woo hoo, A holiday with no kids for 11 days. Bliss, relaxing and warm! BTW it was an early 20th wedding anniversary present to ourselves....