Saturday, 19 January 2013

A photo a day: Week 2

A cooler, cloudier day was just right for a walk with Amelia.  The early signs of Autumn were being revealed to me along my walk.  Dahlia's, Crepe Myrtles and ripening Blackberries.

January 7

Miss Amelia's 2nd Birthday

January 8

The boys watching Amelia opening her presents.

Gabby arrived at our place one visit with a bag full of books.  The perks of managing a book store.  The first book I grabbed was "The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry" by Rachel Joyce.  Now I'm not great at book reviews and I barely pay attention to book reviews.  So I will give a very quick rundown.  Harold is retired, he is sensitive, he likes his quiet time to think as he has a very busy mind and he is a bit lost in his retirement and life at home, until he receives a letter from an old friend who is dying of cancer.  Harold is inspired to walk and believes he will save his friend, and this is his journey.  Many of us take a lifetime to learn what Harold did on his journey, I related to Harold and all of his struggles, whilst reading I felt I was growing with Harold.  I found this a lovely easy book that I couldn't put down.

January 10

Another hot Summers day, I escaped the boys and grabbed a Yogurberry Pomegranate and Mango frozen yogurt before grocery shopping.  Very refreshing.

January 11

My first time at a Cardio boxing class, Gabby and Neil picked me up at 6.30am for a 7am class.  Their friend Sean runs the Vigorous Fitness classes at Castle Hill, click for more info.  I can't believe I made it through the class without vomiting, charming, I know, but I was so beetroot faced during and after the class as well as a little puffed out too!  I did have fun though and am going back each Saturday for more.

January 12

We have church on Sunday afternoons this year, we swap from a 9am meeting to the 1pm meeting with the other ward that shares our chapel.  This Sunday was a very hot day before church, by the time we came out at 4pm it had started raining.  The cool change had come along blown away the heat and replaced it with a wonderful thunderstorm and rain.  It was the perfect afternoon to make a lamb roast for dinner.

January 13

During the thunderstorm after church all four boys were in the back room either painting, playing or just dreaming with their Lord of the Rings miniature figures.

January 13

Monday, 14 January 2013

A photo a day: Week 1 2013

Well here we go again attempting another "Photo-a-day" for 2013.  I'm a little sad that I didn't keep up with the posts last year.  I think life just got a little busy to keep blogging and I kept falling behind.  I do like going back over the photo's from last year, so I shall do my best again this year.

 Seeing in the new year on the front porch with sparklers

December 31, 2012

The first day of the New Year was spent at Palm Beach with my family.   Gabby and Neil did a bit of bouldering, Jan sat under the shade of the beach umbrella, the boys spent lots of time digging in the sand and I even went for a few swims in the crazy rough surf.

January 1, 2013

Toby had been begging me for weeks to put up the tent in the back yard, so we finally did it, just he and I.  We spent the evening playing cards, chatting and nibbling on treats.  It was such a lovely way to spend some one on one time with my youngest.

January 2

The next night it was Ethan's turn to share the tent with me for the night.  We did lots of talking, card playing, reading and toasting mini marshmallows over a tea light. 

January 3

Then it was Sam's turn to hang out with me.  We pretty much played Uno for ages and talked and toasted marshmallows too!  I do like spending time with my boys alone.

January 4

My mum's last night in Sydney so we had a family dinner at the local Thai restaurant.  Here are the girls, me, Jan and Gabby.

January 5

Sunday night and with my mum gone, it's back into the routine of doing the dishes again . . . . and oh what a pain it is with three boys in our small kitchen.

January 6

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Sunday afternoon

. . . . and all is quiet in the back room

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Autumn Surprise crochet blanket

I am sitting on the front porch again, enjoying the cool change that has blown through this afternoon, it is such a welcome relief.  I have been sitting out here working on my new crochet blanket.  About a week ago I was looking for some more yarn at Lincraft so I could start another blanket like my blue stripy one that I finished on New Years Eve.  I still have a large stash but needed to add some of the colours that I'd run out of.

Whilst there I came across this Autumn coloured Surprise yarn by Lincraft and I just had to have it.  Fortunately I found the last 12 balls and snatched them up.

I thought I wanted to crochet a blanket made of squares, as my Babette blanket is a little fiddly with different sized and coloured squares (and is on the back burner at the moment), I wanted something with big simple squares that I could join together that weren't traditional granny squares.  I'm not particularly fond of granny squares, they look fantastic but have too many big holes in them and they let cold air sneak in when you're trying to keep warm.  No offence to granny square crocheters out there I hope, it's just my preference.

So I thought if I could make one large square out of each ball of yarn, it would be a good sized blanket.  The only trouble is I think I might want to make it bigger, and Lincraft barely have any yarn in at the moment.   

I have been checking their online store and I have been visiting different stores in the hope of finding a few more balls, but there is nothing.  So I am waiting patiently for the time that they restock their shelves and hope that there will be some Autumn coloured Surprise on their shelves.

I really like the warm mix of colours and the pattern that emerges with each row crocheted.  Every square is unique.

So far I'm onto my fifth square, it's very easy and I don't have to think too much about a pattern, except of course when I've gone round and found a mistake in the previous row and I have to unravel the row I just crocheted.  I love working on this new project.

Update:  I'm so excited I just found 12 more balls at Belrose Lincraft, now I can make my blanket really big.

End Note:  Thank you Caroline for your offer of Spaghetti squash seeds, most people don't seem to know what they are, it's good to have blogging friends.  I still have a stash of them to fall back on if these ones don't work out.  Blessings to you xx.

Friday, 11 January 2013


Last night the boys and I ate dinner out on the front porch.  It had been a long time since we'd done that.  I think we realised how much we've missed sitting on the front porch.  When the weather is hot we've been hibernating inside, I think I'm a bit tired of the inside of our house.  Toby helped me prepare dinner by grating some carrot and cheese for our dinner wraps and then he went outside to water my pumpkin plants.

He loves watering the garden.  It's that quiet time outside when the day is ending and the sun is low in the sky and the plants are thirsty after a hot day.  With this really hot weather we've been having lately I've been outside morning and night watering the front garden and grass where my pumpkin patch is.

I'm so excited as two of my pumpkin plants have flower buds on them.  Fingers crossed there are some female flowers.  I'm not sure what pumpkins these ones are, they could be from our Halloween jack-o-lantern or they might be some Kent pumpkin seeds I planted.  It will be a surprise if they start growing big orange Halloween pumpkins.

In my pumpkin patch I have also been growing Spaghetti Squash.  When we lived in Canada you could buy it at the markets or road side stalls, but here in Australia it's very difficult to even obtain the seeds never mind the whole vegetable.  So I have been longing to try it again.  I found some seeds a few years ago and tried to grow them in our garden in the back yard but I only got male flowers from the plant, no female flowers, therefore no vegetables grew.

Back in November I found some seed packets at Bunnings and bought a whole heap of them and my mum on her travels to Tasmania came back with some Spaghetti squash seeds for me too.  So far I have two successful Spaghetti squash plants growing, I tried planting some more seedlings out but the really hot weather we had has knocked them out.  I still have another pot of seedlings to plant out though.

It's one of my little projects/dream to accomplish this year.  With my little watering buddy hopefully we will have a fruitful garden in Autumn.  Something I'm looking forward to.