WIP Wednesday #240

20190202_195150.jpgHello everyone! I’ve been super busy this last fortnight, stitching, walking, reading, cleaning, running around after family members & I can’t wait to take a break! One highlight was a repeat dinner with the Harpur family, who brought Aurora with them. Two weeks ago she was the length of Simon’s forearm/hand – now look at her! She’s 5 weeks here.

I didn’t post last week as my pieces were all over the show as I worked away at the various #schoolofmagicalstitchesandliterature tasks. All up, this last fortnight has seen the start & finish of Hello March (500 for words), 200+ more stitches on Nantucket Rose (enabled), 600+ on Shakespeare’s Fairies (various challenges) and 700+ on Tapestry Cat (two challenges). I have just stitched more on TC in a week than I did in all of 2018. He nearly has a tail! This is a lot of stitching but with our national holiday, Waitangi Day, I got extra walking and stitching in. And market shopping. Nom nom on the Whitestone cheeses and Selash cured meats. And perfection at the Franked stall – imported, handcrafted items from Cambodia where there is a story behind the item, & it’s helping differently abled people.

I also finished my January Project Life pages. I’m choosing to do these in a 6*8 album as it’s more personal to me, not for the family. There’s some stuff that involves others (I asked Mase to fill in the Back to School card) but they won’t get this until I’m passed. Mase does look at it, but he knows if it’s hidden journaling, it’s private to me & he’s not to read it yet.

And on Sunday, Louise & I got up early and walked around the harbour on Tamaki Drive. We started at St Helliers, went up to Achilles Point & watched the sunrise and a cruise ship come into the harbour, picked up coffee at Mission Bay and eventually got collected at Royal Akarana Yacht Club. 7.2km in all of super-quality time with my girl.

Hope you all have a lovely week!

Advertisements

WIP Wednesday #226

Hey everyone! If you’re on my IG, you’ll know why I’m late posting. And if you’re not – well. My week has been pretty hard. I was grumpy as (actually, read that as GRUMPY – bold, in italics, 72pt etc), Then I woke Tuesday with a migraine. Ugh. Then Mase came home from school very, very hot and short of breath – turns out he has a chest infection so is at home, on antibiotics. Poor kid. My verse of the week is quite accurate. Thanks for the heads up, Lord.

But before that we had a good weekend. Father’s Day for us – the card is from Lou, who made Dad one of his fav dinners/desserts as her gift; Zac & Mase “brought” Si a Lego Technics yacht and Mase so sweetly kept his major present a secret all week – he asked me to take them to the Bridgeway cinema at Northcote to see the Spitfire movie. I am so proud of his thoughtfulness & if you’re into military or aviation history, this documentary has a five star review from Mase. We also found a small, almost private beach below the cinema & plan to explore by kayak in the summer.

As for me, I finished the round robin! Apart from a gift or treasure on the Queen’s outstretched hands, I’m done. Yippee! So happy with the way this turned out, frames and all. I think I need to pull out the one I’m not happy with from 2015/16 and add frames to that, and see if it makes a difference. I suspect it will.

20180904_150104.jpg

March WIPocalypse

WIPocalypse is hosted by Mel at her blog http://measi.net/measiblog/ ; it’s my favourite SAL, mostly due to the host organisation (which is spot on), the range of topics & the wide variety of stitchers participating. There’s always something to oooh over! Click on the link to the right.

March Focus:

  • Mira RR piece – started, I hates it
  • CAYR SAL – started Satsuma Stocking #3, the reindeer one
  • Flosstube update – Feb’s uploaded in the first week of March

Yep. March came in and stole my stitchy bug. The weave on the RR piece is very tight (32ct opalescent that was then dyed) and I am not enjoying my progress. I have to wear the reading glasses and work short stints, or my head aches. And bc my reading glasses are so focussed, I can’t do my usual and stitch along to Flosstube, as I can’t even focus on the (very large) TV across the room. It’s going to be a daylight only, headphones on, gripping audiobook to get me to the finish line here. I managed maybe 5-6 thread lengths yesterday. Or the skirt train bit, if you’re more visual.

With our Sydney trip happening mid-month, most of my external, non-work, focus was on this. Extra grocery shopping, paying bills early, getting out of my laundry cycle – none of this helped with stitching! This trip was just Si & myself, and we crammed heaps into the two days in Sydney then tried to do a lot of the things on the cruise ship, so even tho I took Fairy Idyll, even she didn’t see much progress. Still, as Katy says, every stitch completed is a stitch closer to the finish. As always, hover or click for captions.

Coming back has been full on too, with a couple of work projects and the netball – Si & I attended night two of the Taini Jamieson Trophy games. Next for these teams is the Commonwealth Games in the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia – we’ll be there for Tag later in the year. FWIW Jamaica won the trophy this year.

April Focus:

  • Finish the Mira RR piece
  • Continue with the Satsuma Stocking
  • FFO a 2017 ornament into a flat fold
  • March Flosstube update – even tho it’s going to be very short!

 

SFS – still in the black! The Stash Unloading things I brought on 01/03 still haven’t arrived, so a refund has been supplied, but the Lizzie Kate charts I brought (Red White & Beach and Be Bold & Brave) did. I didn’t manage to carve out the time to get to Crewel Gobelin but as the bug is missing, I wasn’t too upset. Today I brought two “oddball” cuts from Catherine at Countrystitch – because they are unusual cut lengths left when processing orders, she sells the pieces at a discount. I’ll have about 4” to each side of the Renaissance Mermaid but that’s perfectly fine with me!

Mar-18
Budget $25.00
Jodi – HOD Latte Love -6.76
Jodi – Stitching Feeds my Heart -15.21
Countrystitch Orphan A6 Bourbon -37.67
Countrystitch Orphan A9 Cook Strait -19.93
LK Red White & Beach -12.43
LK Be Bold & Brave -12.43
Refund Supplied Jodi 21.97
Countrystitch Credit 6.09
Rollover $76.57
Total Available Budget $25.20

March 25 – What newer designers and product creators (fabric or floss dyeing, etc) out there have you discovered and recommend? I’m not sure I’ve discovered anyone completely “new”! For fabric dyeing, I obviously love Catherine’s products as the DMC comp is spot on to the actual fabric that arrives, and she allows for shrinkage when she calculates your actual fabric size. Try Countrystitch if you’re looking for something different.

On Etsy, I like Satsuma St, Jenny @ Home*stitch*ness & Stitchrovia. None are completely “new” either but one thing I know about stitching – my tastes change, & every designer has merit.

Wellington, or There & Back Again

NOTE: hover over the photos to show captions!

A couple of weekends ago, we took advantage of a gap in the Tag schedule and flew down to Wellington for a quick getaway. We left Auckland in horrid squally weather (Mase & Si looking at the nearby planes gives it away as to how bad it was) but when we landed in Welly it was much clearer. Perfect for outdoor breakfast watching the seabirds catch fish at Oriental Bay, walking around the city centre & meeting friends for lunch (hello Catherine & Kerry!!).

We took in the Lego exhibit at Te Papa – huge masterpieces with some very clever detail. Si found Jeremy Clarkson’s Robin Reliant next to Big Ben – if you haven’t seen that episode, please PLEASE stop reading now, go to YouTube and search it up. It’s freaking hilarious to see people’s reactions & he even made a live news broadcast! The Mona Lisa is fully made of the 1*1 blocks – like a plastic cross stitch. The boys even made their own addition to the exhibit with a pokeball (I don’t know the name, can you tell?!).

We’d signed on to relocate a car back to Auckland – a dollar a day, plus insurance waiver, 900 free kilometres plus a tank of gas. I’d do it again, but I wouldn’t use Budget purely because of the customer service at Wellington airport. I actually made a complaint & I don’t normally go that far.

The end of day one found us at the Hacienda Lodge in Palmerston North. I do recommend this place; the hosts were lovely, full of useful recommendations; it’s clean & tidy (we ended up with the end unit which is also wheelchair friendly).

Day two & we chose to drive up the lesser roads as far as we could. I found a church I’d love to relocate! Then five minutes up the road, one I wouldn’t – it was one of those 1920’s concrete ones and to strengthen it the contractors had obvs removed the stained glass windows & replaced with plain aluminium, ick. At least it was in use!

We stopped at Waiouru Army Museum (Te Mata Toa) as we do nearly every time we travel SH1. This time they had a new temp exhibition, which consisted of photographs taken in the tunnels under the WWI battlefields in Arras, France. We couldn’t do the Passchendaele exhibit as we were warned that it was too graphic for Mase, but the kids loved the games and graphics in the Food Glorious Food exhibit, especially the game where you caught the ingredients as a rat knocked them off the shelf.

Late lunch in Taupo, then a quick drive to the rental depot at Auckland Airport. It cost me more than either the Jetstar tickets or the car rental to park our car for the 48 hours but we’ve got lots more in our memory bank.

WIP (cough) post-Wednesday #212

Apologies for the lateness but – yeah. Life.

This past week has been really odd, frantic busy & I haven’t had much stitching time at all. I finally started Little House Needlework’s Bethlehem & this is all I have managed, in between swearing & work, while in my little office.

We finished the work at the MIL’s on Tuesday, just in time to run home, clean up & shoot into town to see Jimmy Carr at the Aotea Centre. Another night without eating (trying to get parking & pre-pay so we didn’t get towed ate up the time) but it was so worth it. I know he’s crass & non PC, but his humour is on multiple intellectual levels. And his reaction to hecklers is spot on. I laughed until my cheeks hurt & very nearly at crying point. And we had a late night visitor – those stripes look odd!

Last night MIL and the boys arrived home – hooray! She kept on saying she’d loved what we had done, but then spoiled it a little by commenting about our wanting to sell it. For the fifty-fifth thousandth time – it’s not us thinking about selling. Grr. She has a lot of trouble just being grateful & that is getting to me. After all, that space was original 1979…it was well past due!

I don’t see much stitching in the next week either – I want to go to the last days of the Corsini Collection at Auckland Art Gallery. It closes Sunday but I plan on going Saturday with Mase in tow.

Blurb: From the private collection of the eminent Corsini family in Florence, Italy, comes this fascinating exhibition featuring Renaissance and Baroque painting by artists such as Botticelli, Andrea del Sarto, Caravaggio and Pontormo.

The exhibition provides a window on the family’s continuing passion for collecting art, their support of artists, and their ongoing loyalty to the city of Florence, which has prevailed through the devastation of WWll and the inescapable forces of nature during the flood of Florence in 1966.

Portraits, landscape, mythological and religious paintings, as well as sculpture, works on paper, furniture, costumes, embroidery, games, kitchen equipment and a lavish dining room set for six, will portray the life of this family at the Palazzo Corsini and their patronage of the arts.

Bowentown & Karangahake

BowentownThis past weekend, we left B at home (he’s too cool for family stuff, LOL, plus had refereeing commitments) & the four of us went out of Auckland to relax. As is always the way, it took longer to get out of Auckland than the rest of the drive but once we were on the way, it was awesome. Dinner in Paeroa & we see someone from Dad’s work *eyeroll* can’t go anywhere in private!

The house we rented was a decent size 3 bed, 2 bath, 2 lounge that would sleep 8 easy – if anyone wants the detail, please hit me up – and in a really quiet spot well away from the usual holiday residences/camp grounds. Bowentown is down the end of the mini-peninsula from Waihi Beach, which is both more touristy and more settled.  It was a few minutes to walk to the beach, tennis courts, petanque, playground etc & the boys wanted to do everything – except petanque, as apparently that’s only for adults who like wine. Me, in other words.

Saturday morning was GLORIOUS. We were out on the beach exploring as soon as everyone woke & was fed. I had woken at 4 & curled up with coffee, stitching & my eReader. You know it’s time to get up when the other half steals all the duvet, right? So I got to watch the sunrise and drink coffee in peace. Once everyone else was up we went for a long ramble along the beach…

After the beach & a snack we headed out to Karangahake Gorge. On the map above, it’s a little bit to the left of Waikino. This is the site of old gold works & battery, and the Department of Conservation (DOC) who manage the site do a great job. Of course the first person we see is someone we know *eyeroll* but this time it’s Z’s rugby coach Keryn & the Year 12 drama class from college. Z’s year 10, but you could tell the kids were eyeing each other up with the “do I know you?” look.

Anyway, I love this region. History combined with water combined with forest. I am never keen on being enclosed in underground & that 1.1km tunnel does stretch my limits! However the boys love exploring, doing boy things like climbing on old bridge supports, throwing rocks in the river, jumping over streams, bouncing on swing bridges so we happily spent several hours walking. Technically, if you didn’t look at anything and just walked on the one track, it’s only 3.2km & that’s less than an hour.

3a82d9c2bbeb4bcbc1d673c1ef300701--cornwall-new-zealandWe dragged the boys thru a couple of the antique/junk shops in Paeroa (I got a rare ash tray from the 1940 Centennial exhibition. I’m collecting the rarer stuff as it’s cooler to me but as often was in everyday use, hard to find). But they weren’t into it, so we headed to the supermarket then back to the rental.

That evening we napped, had dinner then watched the election coverage until about 11. It was clear reasonably early on that we wouldn’t have a clear government come Sunday, and in fact we might have to wait a fortnight for the special votes to be counted. I’m OK with that. I won’t get into how I voted (we have MMP or mixed member proportional system so you get two votes, one for the person you wish to be your local MP & one for the party you want to govern). Interestingly, it would appear that the Maori Party is gone completely with less than 1% of the total vote. All the Maori electorate seats went to Labour Party (the left) representatives. I don’t agree with many of their policies obviously, being of the “white settler” background & also having no time for racism or secularism or many “ism” at all, but I was astonished none of their candidates made it thru.

Sunday was a bit cooler than the day before. Everyone else slept late, as you should on holiday, but we again explored the area. Si & the boys went to tennis, while I sat lazing in the sun. I did most of the packing & cleaning while they were still in bed, so that there was as little fuss as possible. Being boys, there was still fuss!

We walked around Waihi Beach and surprise! Again there’s someone we know *eyeroll* Z’s principal & his wife. Who were not there with the drama group, but staying at their bach. Then the drive home, & the sheer delight of crawling into our own beds…

If you got to the end of this and asked – but what about the stitching? – rest assured. There’s plenty to show you on Wednesday!

Movie Review – Cars 3

This one has been eagerly anticipated in my household. It is perfect for a family date night – Louise at 22 even came along! The target market is probably still parents like me who enjoy Pixar, and little boys like Mase who love cars in general, not just Cars, but it’s definitely a whole family show.

cars 3PLOT: Blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers, the legendary Lightning McQueen is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician with her own plan to win, inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet, and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn’t through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage! (Pixar).

Cars 3 is a much better sequel than Cars 2. It’s uplifting and encouraging without being preachy or PC, & while the female character becomes a lead and learns to achieve her goals, there is so much that you can apply to your little boy too. Learning to accept or embrace change, learning from the past, having an all-inclusive attitude to others – massive life lessons.

The story arc is a natural progression from a young, brash Lightning to his (Cars 2) hot young thing to his now need to learn who he really is. I can see a potential continuation to Cars 4 (please!!!!) & really enjoyed the view of who Doc Hudson was and how he came to be the Doc we met in the original Cars.

mcqueen beach cars 3.jpgGraphically, it’s so rich and lush. Parts look so realistic, you could think you were watching drone footage. Full kudos to the whole Pixar team that are involved with this movie. Even the end credits are perfect. I so want the Mater as ET poster!

And as I’ve told Si, I plan to get the paint job Lightning has at the end applied to the Toy Car. He is not as impressed as I would hope. Mase plans to buy the DVD as soon as it’s released.