Friday, January 6, 2012

Outside and In

Inspired and encouraged ...."get stuck in, today!" by Kaite and the mammoth task she took on of digging out part of her yard and putting a stairway in, I returned to a task I'd started a few weeks (months?) back.  This hilly weed covered mound was part of the soil dug out for the foundations of the cat run I had had built, and slowly over time I'd moved that pile bit by was twice as high as this when I started.  I ran out of steam for a while, mainly because with winter rain then sun on it, it turned into a nasty rocky clay pad.

 I had got this far with clearing and levelling it, and removing most of the rocks and rubbish, when more enjoyable pasttimes called, and I stopped again.
 In the last few days, I've finished levelling the area, and yesterday evening I mulched it with straw from the chookpen, and will let it sit and breakdown now, and soften and nourish the still hard soil underneath, before adding soil and planting it out.  A rock edging needs to be added, a job for another day.
This small bed is right outside the cat run, so I'll plant it up with herbs....thyme grass, cat nip and cat grass, some lemon scented pelargoniums I struck from a cutting, and anything else I find that is safe if the cats chew on it, has some perfume and will deter the flies.

In dyepots in the garden are some bundles wrapped with amaranth, some silk, some cotton, and various vinegary and alum mordants.  One...the brownish looking one I think....has a tin lid wrapped inside the fabric....just to see what happens.  I'll leave them tucked up warmly here, and they'll solar dye for a month, as India suggests in her book, and do their thing.

 Indoors, I've been working on some stitching....just a peek, as the recipients haven't received them yet.  This was to be a Christmas gift to go to Sydney with me, for my son's fiancee.  With about 15cms of sewing to go, my machine refused to do anything, except chew the fabric, so sadly I had to leave it behind.  I set to when I returned, and gave the machine a good clean, hoping after a little rest it would behave, and get to work without needing to be taken away to fix something serious. Happily I got it going again and finished *this* for Naomi and sent it on it's way.  I'll reveal all once it's arrived at it's destination in the Blue Mountains.
The second peek is a fabric postcard.  For the second time, I've joined the Stitchinfingers Fabric Postcard birthday swap and the first two birthdays are this month....

this one's going to Tahlia, in the USA

and I received this one from Teresa, just up the road in Brisbane, for my birthday next week.  There are 12 of us swapping, but our birthdays aren't spread evenly across the months....some months 2 or 3, others no birthdays at all.  If I'm organised, I'll work on them in the free months....ha!

And I'm working on this yummy looking pincushion as a gift for a friend, it will be joined by a needlebook, in a small basket, with a tape measure, pins and needles and little scissors. She has just bought a sewing machine, so I thought this would be a fun way to celebrate.
There'll be flowers added, and whatever else takes my fancy.  Maybe some flystitch for TAST?  Has anyone done their bit yet?  I thought I might today, I can't decide how though....whether to add stitches to a cq I have in progress, or do a sampler....hmm, tough decisions.

Off to drink tea and stitch now......bye.


  1. your landscaping is coming on well, don't work in the heat tho. i found after dinner was a good time.

    and sadly no, i haven't done any fly stitching, mainly fly swatting from working outside. I don't think i'll get a round tuit just now, the garden is screaming at me to pick, weed, mow, repair and water. you go ahead tho, we can all watch.

  2. i meant to say that the FPCs look excellent, and HBD for next week, do we know the year? is it an extra special one?

  3. Oh no, no mad dogs and Englishpeople midday sunning, all garden work done early morning or yes, after dinner.

    thanks for the early HBD wishes, no don't think we do know the year, but they're all special, yes?

    Parcel arrived thanks very much!!!
    My comp still broke so emailing you via blogs.
    Right off to make a Nanette barn GRIN

    Love Leanne

  5. Solar dying gardening and stitching.
    You are a multi faceted person.
    Cat looks just as happy asthe chooks you must be doing lots of good things.

  6. Hi Leanne, so pleased the parcel arrived at last, you sound pretty excited about a bag of fabric scraps. can't wait to see the barn made in my honour.

  7. Hi Terry, multi-faceted...haven't been called that before, but thanks, it has a nice ring to it...I just do what I enjoy :)

    That happy kitty is Neesa, she's my gorgeous baby.

  8. great to explore your world here. so curious about Naomi's gift. your kitty looks like my Twinkle.

  9. Happy Birthday....from someone in Canada! Enjoy your day!

  10. love your pincushion. came over here from kaite's blog and think i will have to come back. i did do my tast stitch and posted it on my blog. wishing you a happy birth day.

  11. Happy Birthday from California, U.S.A.
    Hugs too!

  12. Deanna and Magpie...what a fun surprise, thank you for the birthday wishes....I think Miss Kaite has a big mouth...'hee hee' indeed!

    I'll have a look at your fly stitch Deanna, I've done mine now as well, about to post it.

  13. Handstories...nice to see you here. Naomi hasn't received her gift yet, so I'll have to keep you in suspense a while longer.


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