About Me

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My name is Kaye and I am 57 years old. I love to cross stitch and quilt, especially with my kittens, Furio and Milo "helping" me. I also love to read, I have a passion for history and I have been cooking since I was about 12 - move over Junior Masterchef! So, this blog, which started out as a cross stitch blog sometimes morphs into a reading journal or a history lesson (sorry, I used to be a secondary teacher before I became a publisher) or a post about my cooking mojo. Whatever it is, this blog is alway about me, my family and my life here in Eaglemont, Victoria. I have been happily married for over 30 years to the most wonderful man and we are blessed with three beautiful grown up children.

My fellow stitching kittens

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Finally .... a Gifted Gorgeousness Post.....

.... Hallelujah!  I am finally posting for GG, after having missed July and nearly missing August!

If you are not sure what I am talking about.....

 Gifted Gorgeousness (or GG) is a SAL run by the wonderful SAL Mama, Jo from Serendipitous Stitching.  Basically, on the 15th of each month, we post anything which is stitchy gift-related.

.... but, as you can see, I am a few many, many day's late!

So, what sort of Gifted Gorgeousness have I been up over the past two months? Lots really, so here goes... in no particular order....

First up, I "gave" the gift of knitting (and the yarn, needles and pattern mag) to my DDIL last month, and within one
 week, she had finished her first scarf!

If you want to see her progress pics - check out this post and this one.

I am so thrilled that she has taken to this craft like a duck to water.

I also "gave" her the gift of Cross stitch.  I took her up a whole swag of cross stitch supplies to get her started (I thought that I had taken a photo of them but I cannot seem to find it anywhere on my phone - c'est la vie - just to let you know it was a couple of Prairie Schooler Christmas ornament designs).

She started to pick it up but not as quickly as the knitting! That will have to wait for our next visit, I think!

Okay, what is next for GG?  Let's see, I have started what I am calling a "London Blanket" for DD.  It is the same pattern and yarn as the Baby Blanket I made (you can see some pics of the finished blanket here, if you are interested) but with a greater range of colours as it needs to be bigger, naturally. Once it is finished it will be posted off to Old London Town to keep my DD warm over the English winter.

This is the colour palette which we chose together.  I think that it is going to be gorgeous when it is done!

... and here is a further progress pic - I am onto colour two now - can wait to get to the lilac soon!

and, look, it is taking me so long to write this post that I am well underway with colour two....

... the other GG project that I really want to show you is this Prairie Schooler "Baby Sampler" which I made for the baby of the baby blanket fame.

Don't you just love the red cow?

Now, I am sure that I have some other GG projects floating around but I want to get this post up and posted, so next time.

If you want to check out what everyone else got up to for GG, just click here.


Monday, 15 August 2016

Back to Denmark.....

Well, this Friday Frolics  I thought that I should pull out my Danish Bell pull again - only about four more motifs to go and this very long term project would be finished.  You can read all about its provenance in this blog post - The Tale of Three Hatboxes.

This is what it was looking like on Friday before I started stitching again (sorry for the crumpled linen)....

Unfortunately, a bit of frogging went on but eventually I ended up here...

... and then by Sunday evening, I was here - just some backstitching to finish and another motif will be finished!

Well, that is all for me this week - off to work today to earn some money to pay for more stash!  lol!

Have a great week everyone, 


P.S. I also did some stitching on a Prairie Schooler piece - you can read about it here.

Friday, 12 August 2016

Mad, senile and batty...

.... yes, it is official, I am
  mad, senile and batty!

Okay, I hear you say, yes, she must be off her rocker, because what on earth is she rabbiting on about now?????

Well, I have foolishly embarked upon tidying up my Girl's Nest (aka The Black Hole of Kaycutta aka My Sewing room) and whilst I was sorting and organising my mountains of craft fabrics (did I ever tell you that I used to do a lot of quilting?), I picked up on old pink dishraggy-looking piece of linen, it was all crumpled and was nearly just thrown in the bin without a second glance (sorry, forgot to take a pic of it at that stage).

But then, I spied a Homespun Elegance pattern beneath it and I took a second look, gave it a quick press and found this treasure......

.... and can you see it is very nearly FINISHED??????

... and that I started it in 2002?

.... so it has been languishing,  
forgotten and unloved in the cupboard for FOURTEEN YEARS??????

I told you, right at the start of this post, I am MAD, SENILE and BATTY!

Seriously, I must be because why else would I have abandoned it so close to finishing it?

Anyway, long story short ... one evening of stitching later  (two and a half hours to be precise) and 


"In a Garden"
Homesun Elegance
Unknown pink over-dyed linen
Unknown floss (I know that I changed some of the threads from the suggested palette)

Then, of course, I had another play with Fotojet and PicMonkey.....

So, that is all for me today!  Off to dive back into my fabric stash - who know what other treasures I will find?


Monday, 8 August 2016

Summertime .....

.... and the living is easy....

This is one of my favourite songs and seemed appropriate for Jo's

However, as I live DownUnder and we are a rather contrary bunch down here, we are actually in the throes of deep Winter.

 So, instead of Summertime stitching, I give you instead my Happy Dance of my Magnificent Obsession....   

Winter Wonderland     (Well, it is a Shoe Horn Party! - lol)

I have had fun playing with some online photo editing programmes, the first photo has been created using Picmonkey and the second one using Fotojet.

... and here are the standard pics...

.... and just for dear Jo, in honour of The Tenuous Shoe Horn Blog Party - My Summer Holiday, today I started this design:

Have a fun Summer Blog Party everyone, 


Sunday, 7 August 2016

The Alphabet Club - Saturday detention for "M" ....

is for 

Okay, so let me explain - my first M is Mad Max, of course!  Not the one with Tom Hardy (very disappointing, I thought although Charlize Theron was fantastic!) but our very own Mel Gibson, of course (before he turned into an idiot) -when he was young and gorgeous!

... and of course, he is driving along the Mad Max Highway - just as we did in this post and this one!

Next up are Magpies, now in nesting season they are a real danger to cyclists Downunder - so much so that you need to resort to wearing sunglasses on the back of your bike helmet or spikes!

My last M is the iconic poem by one of our most famous poets,  A.B. "Banjo" Patterson.  Everyone in Australia has heard of the famous The Man from Snowy River.

THE MAN FROM SNOWY RIVER by A.B. "Banjo" Paterson

There was movement at the station, for the word had passed around
That the colt from old Regret had got away,
And had joined the wild bush horses - he was worth a thousand pound,
So all the cracks had gathered to the fray.
All the tried and noted riders from the stations near and far
Had mustered at the homestead overnight,
For the bushmen love hard riding where the wild bush horses are,
And the stockhorse snuffs the battle with delight.

There was Harrison, who made his pile when Pardon won the cup,
The old man with his hair as white as snow;
But few could ride beside him when his blood was fairly up -
He would go wherever horse and man could go.
And Clancy of the Overflow came down to lend a hand,
No better horseman ever held the reins;
For never horse could throw him while the saddle girths would stand,
He learnt to ride while droving on the plains.

And one was there, a stripling on a small and weedy beast,
He was something like a racehorse undersized,
With a touch of Timor pony - three parts thoroughbred at least -
And such as are by mountain horsemen prized.
He was hard and tough and wiry - just the sort that won't say die -
There was courage in his quick impatient tread;
And he bore the badge of gameness in his bright and fiery eye,
And the proud and lofty carriage of his head.

But still so slight and weedy, one would doubt his power to stay,
And the old man said, "That horse will never do
For a long a tiring gallop - lad, you'd better stop away,
Those hills are far too rough for such as you."
So he waited sad and wistful - only Clancy stood his friend -
"I think we ought to let him come," he said;
"I warrant he'll be with us when he's wanted at the end,
For both his horse and he are mountain bred.

"He hails from Snowy River, up by Kosciusko's side,
Where the hills are twice as steep and twice as rough,
Where a horse's hoofs strike firelight from the flint stones every stride,
The man that holds his own is good enough.
And the Snowy River riders on the mountains make their home,
Where the river runs those giant hills between;
I have seen full many horsemen since I first commenced to roam,
But nowhere yet such horsemen have I seen."

So he went - they found the horses by the big mimosa clump -
They raced away towards the mountain's brow, 
And the old man gave his orders, "Boys, go at them from the jump, 
No use to try for fancy riding now. 
And, Clancy, you must wheel them, try and wheel them to the right. 
Ride boldly, lad, and never fear the spills, 
For never yet was rider that could keep the mob in sight, 
If once they gain the shelter of those hills."

So Clancy rode to wheel them - he was racing on the wing 
Where the best and boldest riders take their place, 
And he raced his stockhorse past them, and he made the ranges ring 
With the stockwhip, as he met them face to face. 
Then they halted for a moment, while he swung the dreaded lash, 
But they saw their well-loved mountain full in view, 
And they charged beneath the stockwhip with a sharp and sudden dash, 
And off into the mountain scrub they flew.

Then fast the horsemen followed, where the gorges deep and black 
Resounded to the thunder of their tread, 
And the stockwhips woke the echoes, and they fiercely answered back 
From cliffs and crags that beetled overhead. 
And upward, ever upward, the wild horses held their way, 
Where mountain ash and kurrajong grew wide; 
And the old man muttered fiercely, "We may bid the mob good day, 
No man can hold them down the other side."

When they reached the mountain's summit, even Clancy took a pull, 
It well might make the boldest hold their breath, 
The wild hop scrub grew thickly, and the hidden ground was full 
Of wombat holes, and any slip was death. 
But the man from Snowy River let the pony have his head, 
And he swung his stockwhip round and gave a cheer, 
And he raced him down the mountain like a torrent down its bed, 
While the others stood and watched in very fear.

He sent the flint stones flying, but the pony kept his feet, 
He cleared the fallen timber in his stride, 
And the man from Snowy River never shifted in his seat - 
It was grand to see that mountain horseman ride. 
Through the stringybarks and saplings, on the rough and broken ground, 
Down the hillside at a racing pace he went; 
And he never drew the bridle till he landed safe and sound, 
At the bottom of that terrible descent.

He was right among the horses as they climbed the further hill, 
And the watchers on the mountain standing mute, 
Saw him ply the stockwhip fiercely, he was right among them still,
As he raced across the clearing in pursuit. 
Then they lost him for a moment, where two mountain gullies met 
In the ranges, but a final glimpse reveals 
On a dim and distant hillside the wild horses racing yet, 
With the man from Snowy River at their heels.

And he ran them single-handed till their sides were white with foam. 
He followed like a bloodhound on their track, 
Till they halted cowed and beaten, then he turned their heads for home, 
And alone and unassisted brought them back. 
But his hardy mountain pony he could scarcely raise a trot, 
He was blood from hip to shoulder from the spur; 
But his pluck was still undaunted, and his courage fiery hot, 
For never yet was mountain horse a cur.

And down by Kosciusko, where the pine-clad ridges raise 
Their torn and rugged battlements on high, 
Where the air is clear as crystal, and the white stars fairly blaze 
At midnight in the cold and frosty sky, 
And where around The Overflow the reed beds sweep and sway 
To the breezes, and the rolling plains are wide, 
The man from Snowy River is a household word today, 
And the stockmen tell the story of his ride.
The Bulletin, 26 April 1890.

So, those are my three "M"s for this month.

Now, if you are not sure what The Alphabet Club is all about ....

  Well, it is the brainchild of Chiara from The Grey Tail and Jo from Serendipitous Stitching and is loosely based on the premise of the movie "The Breakfast Club" - you can see the button for The Alphabet Club on my right sidebar.

On the first Saturday of each month, members of the club have "detention" and have to post about something that will enlighten others about their culture (as blogland is so diverse).  Of course, there should/could be something stitchy in there, if possible. Each month will be a different letter of the alphabet - hence the club's name - and, of course, we started with "A" and now we are up to "M".

The Alphabet Club

If you want to see what the other detainees have been up to, please have a look here.


Saturday, 6 August 2016

August TUSAL....

.... only four days late!  (Hmm! Although if you count the fact that I missed last month - it is a month and four days late - lol!)

Home ORTs on the right, travel ORTs on the left,  you can see lots of lovely shades of white and blue from my Magnificent Obsession stitching piece.

... and here they all are - the whole year so far.


Monday, 1 August 2016

A miscellaneous post....

.... just some bits and pieces that I want to share with you, really.

First up is, we had some spectacular morning and evening skies the other week - just so very pretty - apparently it all had to do with some particular meteorological conditions which were in play at the time.



Next up, the other night I went to my friend's husband's book launch - it was lots of fun and I cannot wait to read the book.  Isn't the cover cool?

Then the next night, TraderVic and I went out to a great little Thai restaurant in Thornbury with some friends.  We had this delicious snapper dish - but look, my dinner is looking at me!

... and then on my travels around Melbourne, I have taken what I think are some nice pics.  This is the old match factory, which has now been renovated.

A gorgeous, blue winter sky.

One of Melbourne's many cool cafes....

... and, of course, a couple of Furio pics.  Here he is banished to the chair, when he kept jumping up onto the table and sitting on my laptop whilst I was trying to work.

... and then he got himself back into my good books when later that evening, when I had ducked out to visit a friend around the corner, there he was, waiting  for me, like a faithful little puppy!

... and lastly, an update on my Magnificent Obssession.... getting close.

That's all from me, for now.


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