Category Archives: General Ramblings

A Tale of Two Cakes

You may have already heard the tale of the (thankfully not chocolateless) chocolate cake… it’s already quite famous, you know. But on my return from the stashbusting expedition*, I found another waiting:


Sponge cake with strawberry jam, fresh strawberries and cream. Drooooool……

(Dermot’s first ever sponge cake, he will have you know. What do you think Liesl, should we enter him for next year’s Melbourne Show?!)


My birthday (one with a 5 in it) is, in fact, tomorrow, but Sunday is a much more celebration-friendly day, which is why we did it all today. (There is, however, an ominous bag of goodies awaiting kids-in-big-bed time in the morning. In the immortal words of Lola,I can’t wait, I can’t wait!)


It was delicious! (There’s none left, by the way… but it’s not quite as bad as it sounds, we did have guests come for yummo roast-chicken dinner as well, we didn’t polish off the lot by ourselves!)

All that and the Finders Keepers market yesterday with Niamh too. An entirely satisfying weekend!

*If you follow that link you can find a picture of me blowing out the candles – I am clearly moving very fast… which is when I am at my most photogenic, I think**! Thanks Cam 🙂

**I also have quite the photogenic foot, as seen over at Bec’s place. I point this out only to reassure you that I am not kicking Houdini-dog in this photograph, but merely scratching his chin with that foot (which left him in raptures, and my hand quite untainted by Houdini-dog smell!)

So About Last Weekend (Finally)

Five minutes after I left the house last Friday, guess what I remembered? The camera bag… left sitting on the change table at home. D’oh!


I didn’t go back. I was already running half an hour late for a rendezvous with my dad to hand over a couple of kids (the smallest stayed at home with his dad, not ready to venture farther afield just yet). And besides… Sewjourn awaited 🙂 I did not want to miss one minute.

Many have waxed lyrical about the marvel that is Sewjourn. Even if I was capable of waxing lyrical at this hour (I am not), I could hardly do it justice.

It was ace.

There, how’s that?!



Seriously? I had a wonderful weekend, with a great bunch of crafty girls. We ate, drank and made merry into the small hours (well, some of us!), and I sewed a lot. Never mind the knitting, crochet, cross-stitch and some other bits and pieces that came along for the ride – they never got a look-in! It was all about the unencumbered sewing, and all about the GREEN, as you can probably tell. (Unplanned, that, though I should probably just accept that I do have a favourite colour after all).

In approximate running order, my crafty weekend went like this:

:love: Oven Mitts, this time for me. As before, made roughly to Sooz’s Slack Arse Oven Mitts tutorial.

:love: A greener grocery bag. A tute for this one can be found here on Craftster. These bags are really strong, I love ’em. This one is for Mum. I am still making good on her Christmas present. The shame!


:love: My first ever Nikki bag – the Sling. Love love love.


(More on this later, as I do plan to write up a review of the pattern for Nikki’s July competition).




:love: My first finished quilt top! Well. Finished-ish 😉 At 3.30 Sunday afternoon, with flagging energy, and us due to vacate by 4, I decided that was as far as I was getting, so technically I still have to sew on the outermost rows of sashing. (And, you know, piece the back, sandwich it together and quilt the darn thing. I’m not sure this quilting malarkey is going to catch on with me you know – I’m all about the instant gratification.)

So big huge thank-yous to Cathy, Gypsy, Liesl, Caitlin, Bec, and day-trippin’ Cam for having me along and being such excellent camp buddies. You girls rock!

(Liesl has some location shots over on her blog, btw, if you’re more interested in what I didn’t take photographs of!)

Hmmm. Perhaps next year I’ll bring a quilt to finish.

My Creative Space

Creative Space Edition May 6 – in which I finally manage to put foot to pedal and make up the cushions for our friends’ playroom!


I had to curse at the (ancient) overlocker for a while (ok, it was silent cursing – I had ‘helpers’ nearby, after all) to make it behave, but in the end it all turned out nicely. I love this fabric – it’s leftover from their playroom curtains – I think it’s maybe from IKEA?


If you’re making up big cushions (these are 60cm square), or anything which requires long zippers, I can heartily recommend this stuff:


Continuous zipper tape, with a bunch of pulls. You just slide all but one out of the way, cut to length, and away you go. Brilliant! (But, uh, don’t be a wally like me and slide the zipper pull off the end. Several times.) I picked mine up from Lincraft, but you can probably find these anywhere. And in standard zipper as well, not just the invisible kind.


These are the cushions we have in our living area. This is another IKEA fabric (but without large areas of white, for heavy duty kid-usage. Will be interesting to see how the white ones go, but at least the covers can be tossed in the washing machine).

Creative-Space-along at Kirsty’s place. Wonder if I’m the last to post today?

Colours In My Life

Autumn sunshine. Cloth nappies. So nice to be able to get them dry on the line for a little bit longer before the cold and damp set in and we are stuck with clothes horses over heating vents. Not sure how I’m going to manage this winter – I’ll probably be making more than an occasional trip to the laundromat to use the dryers.

The beginning of a new tradition – Games Night: fortnightly, interspersed with Movie Night. This is Carcassonne – one of my new favourites since we gave this to Finn for his birthday.

I hope your weekend is just as colourful 🙂

My Creative Space

Happy April! Hard to believe it is already. My head is still stuck somewhere back in January, I think.

Not sure if I’m going to get very creative today. Depends whether I can banish this headache and get my family packed to go away tomorrow morning.

So here’s one I prepared earlier. As in, yesterday. That’s probably cheating or something isn’t it? Well tough!

My yesterday looked like this:

With a little of this:

And finally, a photoshoot in amongst the basil and marigolds:

This is a little sundress (or perhaps nightie? It looks like a sweet little nightie to me), adapted from a pattern for regular child-sized people (Ottobre 1/2009). I like how it turned out, despite the efforts of craft-room gremlins, who took off with the turquoise bias binding I am sure I own. I’m planning to rework this pattern a bit to see if I can make it fit better on top – amateur improv. pattern drafting on a really tiny scale, fun fun!

Take a tour around creative blogland today, via Kirsty’s place. And have a very happy Easter!

Crazy Haired Crazy Boy

Crazy Hair Day

The final day of Term 1 was Crazy Hair Day at school. Can you tell? Students wore riotous ‘do’s or had their heads shaved at school (!) in order to raise money for Cystic Fibrosis Victoria and the Leukaemia Foundation.

(For this do, I unleashed an entire can of green hairspray onto Finn’s head. We did it in the shower. While I was out taking this photograph, Rohan crawled in the shower and ended up with green hands and feet. Fun times!)

Here’s a bonus shot I snapped of the boy and some of his current reading material. He’s working his way through all of my web programming texts – the subject of the day was Javascript 🙂

Crazy Hair Day

Uh… Happy New Year?

(No, I suppose I can’t really get away with that in March, can I?)

So the wee boy recently raced past the 11-month post, which means I have been a non-blogger for four months people. Four! I think that may be my longest break yet, and people are starting to, you know, mention it. (Ok, namely Mum, but still…)

Also, I described myself to someone the other day as an ‘ex-blogger’, and then I wondered to myself whether the situation was really irreparable… so here we are, my blog and I – we’re entering into a trial reconciliation. No commitment, mind. We’re just casual friends. 🙂

In honour of it being my first post in 2010, how about some pics of a few firsts that have happened around these parts lately?

First day of Year Two:
First Day Grade Two

First day of Pre-school:
First Day Kinder

First swimming class:
First Swimming Class

First (ever) pavlova:
First Ever Pavlova
(This was so, so very good. It disappeared very rapidly. I baked another a week later for Mum’s birthday, and that one didn’t even hang around for a photograph! Pavs are definitely my new go-to fancy dessert. Yum)

[Left] First two-wheeler (technically a four-wheeler right now, I suppose); [Right] Finally getting rid of those training wheels, hoorah!
Two wheelin'

First glimpse at Melbourne’s baby:
Melbourne's Baby Elephant
(And so worth standing in line for, even though I only have crappy pics. Better ones at that link above. She’s since been named Mali, which is Thai for jasmine, apparently.)

Life. It’s pootling along just the way it always does, blog or no blog. Nice to be back 🙂

Blogtoberfest Fail

I am not going to blog tonight. The End.
(Knew I couldn’t make it!)

Blogtoberfest Day 13

Birthdays and Broken Blogs

Blogtoberfest Day 10 ended up being the day that wasn’t. Sorry about that – we had server migration issues. Which I realised at ten to midnight when I sat down to post. Fixed by my on-site tech person this morning. (It’s good to have a live-in tech person).

Yesterday was spent paying a flying visit to the Northside Makers’ Market, then heading to my Dad’s to be stuffed full of calories by my lovely stepmum (or should that be stepmom, since she’s Canadian?!) She’s a wonderful cook, but always provides for an army… (and I have no self-control. Ahem.)
Happy Bday

And now we’re off to do more celebratin’. For today, I am 34 🙂

Blogtoberfest Day 11


I was going to call it a Blogtoberfest bye today. But by telling you, I would actually be posting, so therefore it wouldn’t be a bye at all. Hmmm. And does a tree falling in the woods make a sound if no-one’s there to hear it, anyway?

Fridays this month are less bliss, more crazy. Niamh starts at creche no earlier than 9am, and Finn is supposed to be several suburbs (and 25 minutes drive) away by 9.20 (9.15 this morning). He might be the one going off to do advanced maths, but I’m pretty sure even you and I can do the sums on that one! We weren’t the latest to arrive this morning though, and that’s how I’m planning to measure success 🙂

There wasn’t much point in driving home and back again, so Rohan and I ended up at Volumes in Eltham for a coffee and a bit of a potter before picking Finn up at midday (while Niamh was picked up at the same exact time… thankfully Mum came to the rescue on that one). I’m probably going to do the same again for the next three weeks, so if there are any bloggy peeps out that way at a bit of a loose end on a Friday morning who’d like to get together for a coffee, drop me a note, I’d love to catch up!

Full and busy weekend-y stuff coming up, starting with the Northside Makers Market in the morning. Looking forward to seeing all the local craftiness 🙂

Blogtoberfest Day 9