Monday, November 29, 2010

What Makes Me Happy Week No. 48

What makes me happy? My brother!
My "little" brother was born when I was `10 years old... Perfect!!!
I had the best "doll" in the world...
We were always very close and I absolutely adore my baby brother.
You could not have asked for a better sibling.
Now he is all grown up and living 2 states away and I miss him terribly.
The only wonderful thing about the distance is that he does come home to Brisbane throughout the year, mainly for work and he ALWAYS makes sure EVERY visit home that we get together while he is here.
We have lunch, or dinner or spend the day together if time permits.
He NEVER forgets to catch up and spend some time with me.
He is the BEST and I love him dearly.
Last January he invited me to stay with him in Melbourne and I had such a wonderful time, I am doing it all again next January.
I cannot wait to catch up and spend some more precious time with him.

To the outside world we all grow old. But not to brothers and sisters. We know each other as we always were. We know each other's hearts. We share private family jokes. We remember family feuds and secrets, family griefs and joys. We live outside the touch of time. ~Clara Ortega

Hope you are all having a wonderful Monday!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Making Healing Hearts for NZ

Today I am making hearts to send to Shirley...
Shirley is asking for heart blocks to make up quilts for the families of miners who were lost in the recent New Zealand mining disaster....
Please go HERE to read more about it and for details of the blocks..

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Just had to make this..... And a recipe....

I saw this great little mug bag tutorial on Bev's blog and knew I just had to make it.
You can find her tutorial HERE
It's such a great little pattern and very effective with the stripes on the handles and the bit of elastic in the gusset of the bag.
I made mine a little wider as I have one of those tall types of coffee mugs.
This was fun to make and I am sure I could find lots of other uses for it, not just for a coffee mug!
Thanks for a great tutorial Bev!

Now for a recipe that I meant to post about a few weeks ago (I told my Friends in Stitching girls I would post this recipe after a chat night... and well the weeks just got away... sorry!)
This is a yummy recipe we make often and uses a barbecue cooked chicken, which makes it a quick recipe too.
Chicken & Broccoli Bake

1 BBQ chook, chopped into pieces
250g broccoli, cut into florets
1 tin cream of chicken soup
300ml sour cream
1 tsp curry powder
4 shallots, chopped
grated tasty cheese

Cook broccoli in boiling water quickly (for about 2 minutes) then refresh in cold water.
Combine soup, sour cream, curry powder, shallots and salt and pepper in a bowl.
Place broccoli in base of a large non stick casserole dish. Top with chicken, then pour soup mixture over this. Sprinkle top with grated cheese and paprika.
Bake in a moderate oven for about 30 to 40 mins until golden brown.
Serve with rice.

Hope you are all having a wonderful, creative day!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Beautiful Things.......

What a lovely surprise today at my stitching groups get-together! Four houses all finished.. now we have a village!!! (One house is still under construction - there is a bit of trouble with the builder!!)
I'm sure the fifth house will be finished soon!

I also wanted to show you the absolutely beautiful little parcel I received this morning in the mail. I found this amazing blog called Home and Heart. The wonderful Jody was having a few give-aways of the most gorgeous handmade jewellery I have ever seen. I didn't win the Bliss bracelet, but I still had to have one for my own and Jody made me another one to purchase.
This is how the bracelet was wrapped up when I opened the parcel. It was so pretty and tizzied up that it was almost a shame to open it.
I had to keep taking photos, as every layer was even more beautiful than the last. This is the gorgeous little decorated box the bracelet was in.
Jody even added a beautiful little charm and card... How gorgeous is this?

Finally the beautiful Bliss bracelet. Full of little old world charms and delicate pearls, beads and buttons.
I absolutely love it Jody and I can't tell you how enjoyable it was to unwrap it. It is so beautifully made and all the little extras just made it so special. You must go over to Jody's blog and see all the gorgeous things she makes. She is one very talented lady!
Lots of pretty things today!
Hope you are all having a wonderful day!!

Monday, November 22, 2010

What Makes Me Happy Week No. 47


The best part of this time of the year is the gorgeous fruit we have available to eat. Coming up to Christmas we have all the yummy stone fruits out... nectarines, peaches, apricots, plums, cherries and Mangoes!
You can't beat a delicious cold mango on a hot, hot summer day!
Happy Monday!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Handmade Expo

Today I went to the Handmade Expo that was on up in Ipswich. They are on once a month and this one is the biggest one of the year - I am so glad I decided to go. I couldn't believe it when I got there! So many stalls, lots of yummy food, live Jazz music and wonderful handmade goodies as far as the eye could see!
My lovely blogging friend Selina was there with all her gorgeous chenille goodies!
I couldn't resist and came home with one of her stockings that I've been admiring for ages. It's made with some lovely soft green chenille. I also came home with a few (4!!!) bags of chocolate and caramel fudge - mmmmmm!
This little french lavender sachet came home with me too and I bought it from Linda's stall... a lady I found in blogland only yesterday. She had so many gorgeous things on her stall including some really beautiful vintage bird cages (I'm kicking myself I didn't get one of them now!!!)
How cute is this Quilters Journal? It's full of pages and pockets all decorated throughout the entire book. I also found a few pressies for my stitching buddies, but I'll have to show them on my blog at a later date!!!
We also bought a wonderful handcrafted walking stick for my father-in-law.
It got a good work out today as we walked around the many stalls!!! I think we should have bought someone else one of these walking sticks!!!! (Until he decided to start poking me with it!)
Another handmade pressie we bought was a wooden dinosaur for my nephew. You can't tell by the photo but they are about 40 cm high and we bought the second one from the front, the Velociraptor.
These markets are just wonderful with such a variety of stalls. I was relieved to find many stalls even appealed to my husband!!
Just beside the markets is the Swanbank Steam Train that does a 1/2 hour round scenic trip for people to go on as well.
What a great day... a few more Christmas presents can now be crossed off my list. What a good feeling that is!!!
Hope you are all having a wonderful weekend too!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Woo Hoo... Finished!!!

My Needlewomans Cottage is finally finished. This was a lot of fun to make and I just love the embroidery. I have to thank my wonderful friend Helen who inspired me to keep going with this project as it did take me a long time to work on and finally finish. I have stitched my little house along the way with my other stitching buddies, Tereasa, Laurel and Mary... and it has been so much fun getting together each week and working on this.
If it wasn't for my Tuesday stitching girls I probably would have put this aside long ago to become a "one day" project.

Such a great feeling to have it finished.

This is inside the house and you can see it even has a couple of pockets.

I have also finished my table runner and mat from the weekends retreat. Both are quilted and bound - another fun project to do and soooo clever!
Hope you are having a wonderful, creative day!

Monday, November 15, 2010

What Makes Me Happy Week No. 46

What makes me happy this week?
Spending the weekend with my best friends doing the things we love:
The three of us spent the weekend at Evans Head on a Quilt Retreat.
The workshops were wonderful and a lot of fun.
We made table runners from border fabric.
We also made folded fabric Christmas tree decorations. The theme for the weekend was "Christmas" and the tables looked fabulous.
Saturday nights Christmas dinner was delicious.
And of course Santa dropped in! I've never seen Santa before with such a "different" figure as this one! It was so much fun and the laughing was hysterical. Poor Santa probably lost about 10 kilos as he (she) was in that suit for so long in the heat with 38 ladies to sit on her knee and get their presents!
Helen, the Raffle Queen, won second prize in the raffle, and after winning first prize at the last retreat, I've decided I am not buying any more tickets in any raffle Helen has bought tickets in. She won a gorgeous handmade bag.
This is my Tree decoration, but I still have to add the beads and bells to finish it off. It was so clever the way the fabric was folded to make each section.
My table runner and the round mat that was made with the left over triangles, just waiting to be quilted.
I had time to make this cute little linen bag from Faeries in my Garden that I've had ready to make for a couple of months.
And I finished off two more blocks of Lynette Andersons "My Garden".
I had a WONDERFUL weekend. Even the 3 hour driving trips down and back were laughter-filled and heaps of fun. There is nothing quite like getting away from work (and housework!) and spending time with old friends and new friends, creating and sewing, laughing and chatting, having someone cook for you delicious, yummy food, chatting and socialising into the late hours of the night. Thanks girls for making this such a great weekend. I can't wait to do it again.
Happy Monday!