Listen to the rhythm of the falling 🌧☔🌈

Happy Monday morning 😄  I love this song and it fits today as I woke to the rhythm of the falling rain at about 5.30am and it’s been falling steadily ever since.  The forecast for the week ahead is for showers every day, but that’s winter for you and we certainly need it.

Over the weekend I started (and finished) a rainbow beanie to go with a rainbow scarf order from my friend Anne.  Despite the overcast skies, the 🌈 colours in the yarn were so bright and colourful that I couldn’t wait until I had finished to take some photos 😊…

I love the way this yarn blends gradually into each colour as you work.  What you can’t see in the photos is the shimmer that this yarn has.  It can be diabolical to work with as it splits very easily so you need to work very cleanly and precisely and not make any mistakes as unpicking is really not an option.

As the day wound down, and the wind picked up, and night closed in, I reached the end.  After weaving in the loose ends I hunted through my button tin and found a button that matched perfectly with the gold toning of the yarn edging.  Here are the pics of the finished hat and scarf.

Anne and I are meeting for lunch tomorrow (with our fellows) to hand them over.  She’s going to have perfect weather for using them both as the forecast is for showers and about 15ºC and the rest of the week is following a similar pattern.  We’re also planning on sending our fellows home after lunch and having a “wool gazing” session at Knit Purl, which is conveniently 😉 over the road from the café.

Also finished this week was a black head band/ear warmer for Cindy (Khanzi Park Pastured Eggs at the Kalamunda Farmers Market) that I neglected to photograph 🙁.  It was the same design as the pink trial head band that I did a week ago, but I needed to make it a bit smaller in diameter, so I reduced the hook size and it turned out perfect.  After a bit of discussion between Cindy and Linda (retired egg supplier) Cindy has now ordered another black head band with a bit of silver “bling” 😃.  I’ll be putting that into the order book along with Cindy’s three black and silver beanies that I’m currently working on.  Thanks Cindy for the ideas and the orders 😘 and thanks also to Linda for “egging” us on 😘

So, with the rain steadily falling and no fire in the wood stove, today’s the day that I have to get down and dirty and clean out the back of the flue and all the nooks and crannies of the stove itself.  It’s a really dirty job, but the stove has been smoking quite badly the last couple of days so we let the fire go out last night and it’s going to be a dirty, sooty morning …. but not before I’ve had my cup of tea 😉

Wishing you a bright, shiny, clean day 🔆

 

 

C is for Cookie 😋😄🍪

Happy Thursday!!!  The sun is shining, the sky is blue, the air is crisp and cold.  We’ve had some glorious rain 🌧☔over the past few days that has apparently brought us to one of the wettest beginnings to winter.

I looked for a video about cooking and came across Cookie Monster.  Who can resist a Muppet singing about cookies?  Not me!  It brought back memories of watching Sesame Street and Play School with our now very adult children when they were small.

So, while it was cold with the chance of rain on Tuesday, I decided to get the oven going in the afternoon and stock up the bikkie barrels as they were getting a bit low on provisions.  It’s always a “what will I bake this time?” moment as I have so many favourite recipes but this time I opted for Crisp Coconut Biscuits and Spicy Cheese Biscuits.  Both are really easy recipes that give great, tasty results.  I forgot to take photos as they came out of the oven, but these photos give an idea of the finished product.  Cheese on the left and coconut on the right.

The kitchen was filled with delicious aromas and naturally we had to taste test the final results 😋👌👍

If you’d like the recipes for these biscuits, go to my Cooking page and I’ll have them posted there.

Gordon managed to get some photos of pink and grey galahs on the power lines yesterday morning.  Beautiful birds that mate for life ….

Wishing you a happy, sun-filled day.

 

 

Funny how ⌛⏰slips away (thanks again to Willie Nelson!)

Last year I started my post in a similar way with thanks to Willie Nelson.  Today I decided to include the video of him singing.  I do hope you like his gravelly voice.  Willie was born in 1933, and he’s still around writing and singing.  We have been fans of The Highwaymen (Willie, the late Johnny Cash{2003}, the late Waylon Jennings {2002}and Kris Kristofferson) since forever, it seems.  We last saw them together in November 1995 with “almost” front row seats at the old Burswood Dome in Perth, Western Australia.  It was an incredible night of amazing talent and showmanship, never to be forgotten 🎶 Hard to believe that it was 23 years ago!

Time has certainly slipped away from me since my last post.  I know it was only 11 days ago, but where it’s gone I really can’t figure out.  The days are going so quickly and we’re already at the back end of June.  Half the year gone in what feels like a blink of the eye 🙀

The good thing is I’ve been reasonably productive on the crocheting front … maybe that’s why the time has 🚀 … although the housework has suffered a bit 🤔  I always remind myself that my Mum used to say “what doesn’t get done today will still be there tomorrow”, and she was right.  So I don’t stress about it, although it would be nice if the house cleaning fairies would pay me a visit occasionally 👌

The gorgeous Portacraft Glimmer Twist yarn that I’ve been using is very popular and I’ve completed two more soft, long scarves … this one in Apple Orchard ….

… and this one in Coral Reef …

There are more orders for beanies … this one black with silver trim. This was a challenge as everywhere I looked the “silver” yarns were really just dull grey. Opted for a very pale grey with silver thread in the Moda Vera Starlight range and it worked really well.

Then a request was for an ear warmer.  I’ve used a cross stitch to give it some oomph and texture …

This is a trial run as I feel that it may be a bit too wide so I’ve used scrap yarn to give it a go and see what the client thinks.

There’s still an order for a Glimmer Twist scarf and matching beanie in the Boardwalk Promenade rainbow scarf profileto be started so I’ve been kept steadily busy this past month and  I’m certainly not complaining.

The good news on the yarn front is that we now have a new shop in Kalamunda called Knit Purl Yarn Boutique and owner Lena has an amazing range of yarns of all types including alpaca, wool, wool blends and acrylics.  It’s going to be very difficult to restrain myself from spending 💲💰💰  I’ll be browsing with friend Anne tomorrow to check out prices for a couple of possible orders (and keeping my money in my purse for as long as possible 😜).

So that’s it from my little corner of the world.  We have some sunshine coming this weekend.  Wishing you joy and sunshine in whatever you’re doing.  Thanks for stopping by 😎

Stormy Weather ☔, Beanies🤠, Ukelele Fun 🎼🎶 and Strawberry Jam 😋

What a miserable day it was yesterday 🌧☔⛄🌪We didn’t get a thunderstorm or snow but the rain pelted down, the wind howled in humongous gusts and it was very cold.  We had two goals for the day … our weekly Kalamunda Farmers’ Market shopping and playing our ukeleles with our Friday morning group to promote our fun class at the local Kalamunda Community Learning Centre Open Day.

First off, we went down to our Sunday Farmers’ Market for our weekly shop of eggs, olive oil, fruit, veg, honey. pasta, chorizo and other goodies and also deposited our “scrunchable” plastic at the Recycle In-Tent.

The Recycle In-Tent (RIT) is a great initiative and it’s amazing the amount of “stuff” you can recycle … especially the stuff you can’t put in your normal yellow top recycling bin.  There’s a big shopping trolley for scrunchy plastic, and that gets filled every week.  There are separate small bins for things like coffee pods, mailing satchels, toothpaste tubes, toothbrushes, cosmetic packaging … the list goes on.  Until the RIT started up I was unaware that there are actually companies that recycle some items that appear to be unrecyclable (is that a word???)  These special small bins are a fund raising initiative for a local primary school.

Each week our scrunchy plastic is getting less and less as I move away from the supermarket and buy more and more unpackaged dry goods. It’s very rare that I buy any fruit/veg that’s packaged … strawberries are probably the main exception.  I’ve always tried to reduce waste and landfill but it’s amazing just how much more you can do if you really put your mind to it. This past month I’ve only put our rubbish bin out twice and each time it feels stupid because it usually only has a large paper bag (recycled from the butcher) in it with stuff that we can’t recycle. All food scraps go out to the compost, scrunchy plastic into a special bag for Sunday,  newspapers and cardboard into the recycle bin and that’s about it.  I think this sounds a bit boastful 😜 but although I’ve been recycling for years I now feel that there are more options and that I’m really doing my bit.

I’d like to put a plug in for Rachel and Simon who own Replenish in Kalamunda.  They’re my “go to” shop and they really are the place to start reducing your packaging.  They have so many dry goods, spices, seeds, fruits, oils, cleaning products, toilet rolls, reusable cups, straws … I can’t list everything … but if you want to reduce your packing this is the place to start.  You just take in your own container, weigh it and write the weight on the side and fill with your chosen product.  At the counter they deduct the container weight and you’re just charged for the product.  If you forget your container, they have a large bin of donated clean glass jars and also strong paper bags made from recycled paper.  There’s also a loyalty programme so you can actually build up some credit as you spend.  I’m well on my way with a $5 credit waiting to be used.  How’s your recycling/waste reduction going?

While we were at the market we picked up our weekly eggs from Cindy (Khanzi Park Pastured Eggs) and talked her into modelling her pink beanie that I dropped off last week.  Like most of us, Cindy was a bit reluctant to be photographed … she says her best side is the back of her head (I know that feeling)!  Cindy, I hope you’re happy with these photos 😊.

Apparently the “trial” beanie (that I delivered with Cindy’s order last week) is being used all the time at the farm.  Nice to know that it’s being useful 🙂  Cindy has also placed another order for three special beanies for some friends she’s going to spend some time with later this year.  Time to get off to Spotlight to find that special yarn I’ll need.

Shopping, chatting and recycling done, we went off for morning tea at a favourite spot in Lesmurdie called The King and Spoon.  A great little cafe/restaurant with a delicious range of delights.

From there, home to unpack the shopping and then off to the Learning Centre for Ukelele Fun.  I don’t have any photos from the two hours that we were there, but it was a fun filled couple of hours with our people joining in for whatever time they had available.

The Uke group is something we have thoroughly enjoyed being part of (thanks to choir friend Marion).  We started at the beginning of the second semester last year and decided to continue on this year.  There’s no pressure to master the chords quickly, you can sing (or not) and our tutor, Annamaria, keeps us on track (when we’re not too busy talking 😄) … it’s about having fun, mastering a new skill, enjoying the music and socialising. For those who want to take it further, there are Uke groups around that you can move on to and expand your skills.  Gordon and I really look forward to our Friday mornings and although I have to admit that we don’t practice much, we’ve come a long way from our fumbling start last year to feeling confident enough to play in front of an audience (albeit within a group of Uke players!).

Today is overcast but dry with a forecast of possible rain.  Time to get some washing done and into the carport,  and then cut up the four punnets of strawberries that I bought yesterday.  The house will be filled with the delicious aroma of strawberry jam a bit later this afternoon.
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Wishing you a happy day, wherever you and and whatever you’re doing 😎

A Little Ray of Sunshine 🔆

We’re in love❤❤ The secret is out 😺Last week, our second grandchild was born, named after my Mum and born on the day that my Dad would have been 100.  A very happy and nostalgic occasion .. she is beautiful 👌😍

The project I was working on for months was a blanket for the family heirloom cot.  The cot was made by Gordon’s Dad for our eldest son who was born in 1970, and was subsequently used for our daughter and then younger son before being hung from the rafters in Gordon’s workshop until our grandson was born in 2008 😍.  It was then hung back up in the workshop again until it was needed for this new addition to our family.

This is the secret … a blanket that I made with 100% cotton.  Because the pattern is quite dense, the blanket is very warm and was quite a challenge to make during the hot summer months.  The fine cotton meant it took quite some time to complete but the final result was worth it.  Unfortunately I was so eager to hand it over that I completely neglected to take my usual photos but here’s what it looks like ….

The cold, wet weather also made its presence felt last week, so I sat down with the remainder of the cotton yarn and made this little beanie for our new arrival …

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So we are now blessed with two lovely grandchildren.  How lucky are we?👌👍😍

You can keep your hat on 🤠

This past week was a “beanie” week as I filled an order for two beanies for Cindy, who has the Khanzi Park pastured eggs at the Kalamunda Farmers’ Market   https://www.facebook.com/khanziparkpasturedeggs/ One pink and one royal blue beanie finished and I also included the trial beanie free of charge as I wasn’t happy with the way the variegated yarn didn’t blend in slowly as it changed from light to dark pink.  These are the finished beanies …

Cindy was very happy with her beanies and so was I as I wasn’t totally sure that they would fit.  I had made them to fit my head as I was fairly sure that Cindy’s head was about the same shape and size.  Thank goodness I was right 😊 but I completely forgot to take a photo before we went off to do the rest of our shopping.  If you’re reading this Cindy, perhaps you could take a photo and post to my Facebook page?  

These are all “top down” beanies and the stitch is called a Soft Seed stitch.  It can be a bit tricky getting it right as you increase to the right circumference but it has a lovely soft texture and looks really nice finished.  I finished off with a ribbing that I normally use for my fingerless gloves.  Usually, this is done by creating a strip of ribbing and joining it into a circle, then crocheting into the edge of the ribbing to create the round beanie or gloves or whatever.  This new way is an interesting concept and gives me the freedom to work from the top down and finish with ribbing (rather than single crochet or bulky post stitches) and without a puckered finish at the top of the beanie where stitches need to be gathered in and usually hidden with a pompom.  Now it means that a pompom can be an optional extra … not a necessity 👌

I love crochet.  It keeps my hands and mind busy and there’s always new yarns out there begging to be tried out on new projects.

Do you have an item you would like made?  Something that’s a “one off”, that no one else will have in that particular style or colour or yarn?  Why not get in touch with me and we can discuss making something special … just for you 🎀?  I love a challenge and I love making people happy.  Put the two together and you’ll have something unique.

Coming up in my next post … the secret project that I couldn’t divulge is no longer a secret 🍾💐💕👣🌟

Wet and Wild and Wonderful🌧🌩☂☔

From Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.  I’ve always loved this piece of music 😍

We’ve had some pretty wet and wild weather over the past four days and then today has been an absolutely glorious autumn day.  Washing done and on the line and feet up crocheting 😄

I posted in FB today but haven’t worked out how to link into WordPress, so here’s a copy of what I wrote …..

Last week was fantastic following the promotion by NIghtingales Pharmacy and Newsagency, and this week is also looking good 

I wore my rainbow scarf to our weekly Kalamunda Farmers’ Market on Sunday morning and Cindy from Khanzi Park Pastured Eggs commented on how colourful I look each week . After buying my eggs and chatting with Cindy and Linda Oliver (who used to be our “egg lady” until she retired) Cindy asked if I could make her a beanie as the one she had bought the previous year was the wrong size. A bit of discussion on size etc and I now have a order for two beanies, a pink one and a blue one.

I wanted to make “top down” beanies as “bottom up” crochet beanies don’t always finish off neatly at the top, but I’ve never been able to find a “top down” pattern with a ribbed edging. I finally worked out that I could add a ribbed edge by using the same ribbing that I use for my crochet fingerless gloves, I just had to improvise to add the ribbing on as the final round.

So yesterday was a trial run making a beanie with some of Nightingales Ice Cream yarn and using a seed stitch design plus the ribbing. It turned out really well, so I’m now in the process of making the “proper” pink beanie for Cindy. Hope to have both beanies finished for next Sunday’s market.

The sun is shining through the kitchen window and I’m happily crocheting with my cup of coffee keeping me company 

I hope you’re having a sun shiny day 😎

And the photos ….

The photo on the left is the pink beanie currently in progress and the one on the right is the finished trial run from yesterday.  Very happy with the ribbed finished 👌🙂

On a roll ……………… 👌😺🌟☔⚡

My goodness, I remember this song from my teenage years!!!!  Have you ever really listened to the words?  I hadn’t until this morning … interesting 😎!! Great jive music and a good way to start the day with some bright, happy music.

The crocheting fingers have been busy, busy, busy and I’ve managed to finish one order and almost completed another.

Big Thank You to Brenda for the order of a lovely long scarf in the Moda Vera wine and sparkle yarn.  Finished it yesterday and I’ll be dropping it off to Brenda as soon as she has a moment free.

After I’d finished Brenda’s scarf I had this thought …  “I’m on a roll, why not get the second order started”?  It was a lovely sunny day, so I sat outside under the very sparsely covered grapevines and started this gorgeous scarf for Kerry.  It’s the same yarn and style of the previous multi-black/silver/grey scarf that was ordered by Donna at Nightingales Chemist & Newsagency recently.

I just couldn’t put it down last night and this morning I thought I’d just do a “little bit more” but, again, I can’t put it down 🤔, so I’ve decided to continue on and finish it today.  The housework will always be there waiting for me (it never seems to go away, does it 😜?)  I figure there’s about another two hours crocheting and I’ll be finished.

I lit the slow combustion wood stove this morning as the temperature is predicted to drop and rain and possible storm coming in later today.  Kettle has boiled and we’ve both just finished enjoying a cuppa in the cosy kitchen.
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We need the rain after a very dry autumn, but I’m also hoping that the coming rain gets inland to our farmers who desperately need the rain.

So, back to the red hot crochet hook 😄

I would love to hear from you if you’d like to drop me a note or post a comment 😍 and remember, I’d love to make something special for YOU!

Wishing you a lovely day 🔆

Singing is good for the soul 🎼🎶🎶

I am part of a small “all women” singing group called Secret Women’s Business.  There are about 20 of us, we’ve been together for two years and we sing two, three and four part harmonies.  We all belong to one or more of the four Born to Sing Choirs located in Rockingham, Joondalup, Melville and Guildford in metropolitan Perth, Western Australia.  I’m part of the Guildford choir on a Thursday night and I meet with the SWB ladies on a Saturday morning.

Singing with these wonderful women is a fantastic experience.  We have so much fun and laughter as we learn new, and sometimes challenging, harmonies.  Some we struggle with and Martin (our fantastic and very patient choir master) puts them on the back burner for a while, to come back to later.  Others we just keep persevering with until they finally click into place.  One of those is the version of Over the Rainbow by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole (known as Iz).  Unfortunately his life was very short but he produced this lovely and different version ….

This song has really been a challenge for all of us but it finally came together and this last weekend we performed Iz’s version of Over the Rainbow, together with Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow; Day and Night; Prayer; The Boy From New York City and a “tongue in cheek” version of Wishin’ and Hopin’ that we call Thrillin’ and Longin’.  We performed at a Lifestyle Expo at the Claremont Showgrounds on Saturday and on Sunday at the Rockingham Cruising Club for the Red Hat ladies “Pearls and Tiaras” function.

Both performances were a great experience … the Expo because we didn’t have a “captive” audience sitting in front of us, just a small number who sat down to eat lunch and perhaps to listen to this group of women on the stage.  The pavilion was full of stalls and people browsing and we noticed that many people in the very large, open area were listening and moving to our music, so that was quite heartening.  Later we had a stall holder rush over to ask how to book us for a performance, so we could possibly have another gig coming up in the near future👌

The Red Hat ladies were a totally difference experience.  They were a fantastic, friendly audience and we were the entertainment for their function.  Their response to our introductions and songs was amazing and very uplifting.  We were even asked for an encore but unfortunately we hadn’t even anticipated that happening 🙀 and didn’t have a song prepared, but they have said they will be having us back 👍 so we’ll make sure we have an extra song or two ready for an encore next time 😉

As I deal with depression, these two “Cs” … crocheting and choir … help keep me on track.    The crocheting keeps my mind concentrating on design, colours, stitches and patterns, and creating beautiful accessories and functional pieces of work.  Singing with the BTS choir and SWB takes me out of myself to another place where I become part of a harmonious whole and contribute to beautiful sounds.  Research has shown that singing is of great benefit for those with mental illness such as depression, anxiety and panic attacks and I can certainly attest to that.

So here we are, Secret Women’s Business, after our Saturday performance.  I love singing with these fantastic ladies ❤.  I’m the pink haired one with glasses in the front/middle 😍

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If you’re interested in listening to some of our SWB and BTS videos, you can find them by clicking on this link or clicking on the “choir” tab at the top 🌈🔆💐

🎶😎👍Things are looking up 🎉🎉

Have a look below at this Facebook post from Nightingales, our local chemist/newsagent.  They’re talking about me!!!!!

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I can’t believe how one small move on my part has taken me in such a big step in the right direction.  I’m currently gathering my finished projects together ready for the photoshoot.  As you will see from the top of the page, I have changed my profile picture to feature my beautiful rainbow scarf that was the catalyst for all this happening.

I can’t thank Nightingales enough for the opportunity to display and promote my crocheting and at the same time I will be assisting them to promote the yarns they have on offer.

As I mentioned in my previous post “Rainbows”, I had received an order for the multi black/grey scarf, which I finished and delivered last week.  Last night I had a phone call from another staff member asking if I could also crochet a scarf for her in the same yarn.  Naturally I said yes😍👌

I feel like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz … I’m going to follow that yellow brick road and see where it takes me …. stay tuned!!!!! 🌈😍