Monday, 26 July 2021

Monday-itus!!

Well ... Monday has rolled around again &lived up to its legend ... SIGH! Not feeling 100%, forced to get up earlier than I like with the temperature below five degrees, a run-in with the boss at my grown up job & cold westerly winds whipping winter to new lows. If anyone is looking for me, I’ll be snuggled under my flannel quilt with a book & treats from a weekend road trip ...

My favourite Mango Tea from Tamborine Teas & some indulgent salted caramel chocolate. It won’t fix most of Monday’s muck, but it might cheer me up a bit. πŸ˜‰ Hopefully your week is off to a better start, but whether you’re off the blocks & running or dragging the chain like me, I wish you all a wonderful week. Take care, stay safe, stay well, keep stitching & keep smiling. 😊 Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 


Friday, 16 July 2021

Try & Try Again!

Finally ... here I am, back to catch up with you all out there in blogland & announce the June OPAM draw winner. This is about the fourth try I’ve had at finishing the blog hopping & posting ... I keep getting interrupted & sidetracked ... the story of my life! 😝 Some of the sidetracking has actually been sewing ... SURPRISE! πŸ˜‚ I’ve made some progress on my blue squares ...

I’ve now got five nine-patch blocks together. There will be appliquΓ© blocks between, but I’m still working out what to do there, so it’s on the back burner while I contemplate. I also made some progress on my new stitchery quilt design-in-progress ...


This is my “Happy Hippie Chick” quilt & I'm having fun with it when I can snatch time to work on it. My brother calls me a leftover hippie ... I object to the ‘leftover’ bit ... but I’ll own the hippie title. 😜 These stitcheries are incorporating some of my favourite things ... Combis, Beetles, mendallas, pretty colours, Cottage Garden Threads, fun & stitching. I’ve got a couple more blocks to design before I tackle how I put it at together ... any suggestions to throw into the pot???

Another slight sidetrack was a visit up the hill by my Sorta-Sister Tiffy for a birthday lunch for Dad ...


Here’s Mum, Dad & I ... can’t half tell we’re related, can you?! 🀣


And Mum & Dad with Tiffy. You can see that Tiffy is the reason for the blue baby quilt. 😜 There was also a trip down the’hill’ in there to help Tiffy celebrate her baby shower. Tiffy boarded with Mum & Dad to finish high school with her class after her family moved from town ... & some 15 years later she’s just been absorbed into our family. 😜

So ... that & a bit of stress at my grown up job have kept me from adding any finishes to my OPAM tally ... but some of you have been busy stitching bees with ...

42 FINISHES 

Recorded for June. Well done everyone! And as I hopped around the blogs, I saw lots of progress being made on longer term projects, too, so that’s fabulous. I also saw some fabulous hand knitted socks that I was envious of ... I hate wearing shoes, so winter often sees me wearing warm socks around the house to stop my toesies turning blue ... & I’m hopeless at knitting anything other than a straight stocking stitch scarf! 🀣 The random draw winner for June is ...


Congrats Karen! Drop me an email & I’ll send you a PDF copy of a Tag Along Teddies pattern as your prize. But right now, I think I’m off in search of lunch ... time seems to have got away from me ... AGAIN! 😜 Wishing you all a safe & restful weekend. Special cyber hugs to those of you in lockdown again. It’s rainy here today with a forecast of the rest of the weekend being freezing, so I’m planning to hibernate in front of the fire with some stitching or a book. Stay safe, stay well, keep stitching & keep smiling. 😊  Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 





Friday, 25 June 2021

CRIKEY!!

There went another week! It went zipping past in a blur of busyness, a family visit & crazy catch-up with my grown up job, plus my boss is away for two weeks & we’re a staff member down, too. I’m looking forward to the weekend, even if the weather gurus are telling me it’s gonna be a NAAAAAAASTY weather weekend! 😳 Hibernating in front of the fire with books, movies, stitching & cups of tea sounds like my preferred plan. 😜

So here I am finally getting around to the OPAM roundup for May ... just in time to remind you to update your sidebar tallies for June! Tee! Hee! Hee! I think everyone must have had a bit of a disrupted May, actually, as it’s our lowest tally for the year so far with ...

43 FINISHES 

But ... during my blog hopping I saw that many of you are working away on longer term projects, so that means less finishes, but still enjoying some creative time. The winner of the random prize draw for May is ...


Congrats Janice! Drop me an email & I’ll send you your PDF copy of a Tag Along Teddies pattern to play with.

And really, that’s it from me for today. I’m off to put the kettle on ready to start my weekend ...


A cuppa, some Enya, a scented candle burning & some stitching. My version of a winter survival kit. πŸ˜‚ Whatever you’re up to, stay warm, stay safe, keep stitching & keep smiling. Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 



Sunday, 20 June 2021

Holiday Hiatus!

Hello to all of you lovelies out there in blogland! I know I’ve been off the map for a few weeks - sorry about that. It’s been a bit of a holiday hiatus time. A couple of busy weeks at grown up job to cover all the things I’d normally do during the two week break we have then enjoyed! It had been almost a year since my Beloved Geek Boy & I had had more than a few days off in a row, so it was much-anticipated. πŸ˜‰

We started our break with a road trip four & a half hours north to Bargara beach, near Bundaberg.


It was tough looking at this view for four days, but we somehow managed. πŸ˜‚ While we’ve spent a lot of time in Bargara & Bundaberg over the years (my Grandma lived at Bargara until her passing four years ago) there were still places we wanted to visit this trip that we hadn’t managed previously ... apart from the Quilters Shack which is a repeat visit destination. 🀣 Whilst researching his family tree, GB discovered his great-grandmother was buried in Bundaberg Cemetery so we popped in for a visit ...


Sadly, there’s no marker or headstone, but a site map gave him the plot number & a reference photo, so we were able to track it down. Our visit to Bundy also coincided with the anniversary of my Grandma’s passing, so we paid her & Gramps a visit at the crematorium memorial gardens ...


Here’s Mum next to Grandma’s plaque. Gramps’ plaque is on the adjacent wall set aside for retired service men & women, as he served in New Guinea during WWII. The gardens were beautiful & my keen gardening Grandma would approve. πŸ₯° We also finally got around to visiting the Bundaberg Brewed Drinks factory - home of Bundaberg Ginger Beer ... YUMMO! We joined a taste-test tour to try the range of soft drinks produced there ...


And chose our complementary six-pack ... apple cider, blood orange, burgundy creaming soda, traditional lemonade, mango & grapefruit were my picks. I don’t drink a lot of soft drinks, but these are a nice treat that I’m gradually working my way through. 😜 During our time at the beach, we took a day for a mini road trip an hour & a bit to Maryborough where we met up with my Uncle, who drove from the Sunshine Coast to show us through the Military & Colonial Museum, which he is heavily involved with.


I’m not usually a big fan of war-related museums, movies or books (GB has to wait until my sewing night outings if he wants to watch war movies. 😜) , but I really enjoyed visiting this one because the focus isn’t so much on the fighting & battles, but on the stories of the ordinary people who found themselves caught up in extraordinary events.

... like Herbert James, whose medal set this is. We also enjoyed a VIP tour of the “ANZAC To Armistice” walk in the nearby park.


GB & my Uncle with a statue of the first man ashore at Gallipoli, which marks the start of the walk. If you’re ever in/near Maryborough, I can highly recommend the Military Museum for your itinerary. And just across the road is the Port of Maryborough Bond Store. Maryborough in its heyday was one of the busiest ports in Australia & the bond store was where goods were offloaded & stored until the import duties, or BOND, was paid & items collected. Not only are there interesting displays sharing some of Maryborough’s history, the gift shop sells some rather tasty liqueurs ... some vintage port & Turkish Delight liqueur may have come home with us. πŸ˜‚

And that pretty much filled up our beach visit ... which for the first time ever saw our usual rainy weather hold off until the morning we headed home.


Did I mention it ALWAYS rains when we visit the beach?! 😝 It didn’t, however, stop us from enjoying a last walk along the beach ...


And dipping our toesies into the rather cool waves. What the photo doesn’t show is the grumbling from GB about “hurry up & take the photo cos it’s freezing” or the manic giggling of the photographer who actually took the shot three waves ago but didn’t tell him! Tee! Hee! Hee!

It was then home to “the fridge on the ridge”  for the rest of our break which ... sadly for us hot-weather chooks! ... lived up to its name, with most of the last few days’ temperatures barely creeping into double digits .. EEP! πŸ₯Ά And sadly it’s back to impersonating responsible adults again tomorrow ... SIGH! Just as we were starting to feel rested enough to begin tackling the list of things we thought we’d achieve during our break. 😜

I realise I still haven’t done the last OPAM roundup & random draw ... & it’s almost time for the next one! 😳 I promise to be back in the next day or so to do that. But right now it’s time to put the kettle on & round up some firewood because the temperature is already on the decline for the day ... BRRRR! Whatever you’re up to this week, I hope you stay warm (or cool, for those in the northern hemisphere. πŸ˜‰), stay safe & keep smiling. Til next time ...

BRRRRRRRR BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 










Sunday, 30 May 2021

Square Dancing!

Hello to you all out there in blogland! 😊 And greetings from the top of our chilly ‘hill’ this sunny Sunday. I know that ‘chilly’ & ‘sunny’ don’t seem like they should go together, but that’s winter on top of the Great Dividing Range, our ‘hill’. 😜 The calendar may say it’s not winter yet, but our weather is getting a head start, with the last two nights down in the lower single digits ... so it’s almost time for the Meares’ Madhouse to go into hibernation ... we wish! Tee! Hee! Hee!

Since I can’t hibernate, I’m doing the next best thing ... Sunday sewing. And I’ve been playing with my favourite teal/aqua/green/blue stash again, doing some square dancing ...


I’m making a quilt for a blue baby due to our extended family later in the year & while I’m kinda making it up as I go along, I’m starting with some nine-patch blocks. They’re going to be interspersed with some appliquΓ© blocks ... once I decide what I’m appliquΓ©ing. 😜 Stay tuned! πŸ˜‚

And it’s also that time of the month that I remind all of you lovely OPAMers to update your sidebar list of finishes for May & email me your final tally for the month. I’m looking forward to seeing where your creative journey is taking you at the moment. 😊

While my next step with my blue quilt may still be a mystery, my next step today is ... you guessed it! ... to make myself a cup of Tambourine Tea! πŸ˜† Mmmmm ... I think I’m in a Summer Night’s Dream mood. Wishful thinking, perhaps! πŸ˜‚ Whatever you’re up to today, I hope it includes something creative. Special shout-out to those of you in Melbourne who are locked down again. Stay safe, everyone & keep smiling! 😊😘 Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 

Friday, 21 May 2021

Fri-Yay!

Hello, hello! Greetings to you all from the top of our ‘hill’ this sunny-but-blowy Friday. 😊 It’s my official day off for the week & I’m happily spending the day at home, puddling around doing a few chores (my Mum would be proud! πŸ˜†) , indulging in a little fantasy fiction reading & having another play with ...


... my favourite colour stash. 😍 There’s a blue baby due in our extended family in a few months, so I’m starting to think about quilt ideas ... simple squares, half-square triangles, appliquΓ©, stacked coin ... Oh! The many choices that lay before me! Maybe I need to have a cup of tea to help me think about it. Tee! Hee! Hee!

While I’m waiting for the kettle to boil, I thought I’d share a few quick pics I took last weekend when my Bestest-Buddy-Since-We-Were-Nine Lynette & her Sweetie came for a drive up our ’hill’ to check out the annual Hampton Food Festival. It had to be canceled last year due to the zombie apocalypse, but it’s a great day of showcasing the many food & beverage producers that are thriving in our High Country Hamlets area.


After navigating the sign-in & lining up for a while in the large crowd in attendance, we rewarded ourselves with a yummy raspberry muffin from Bakers Duck ... they have a cafe/bakery in Toowoomba if you’re looking for sweetie-treaties. πŸ˜‹ We also stocked up on ...


... our favourite olives. 😍 Previously Bunnyconnelon olives, that part of one of our favourite local businesses has moved into the hands of Coolbardie Olives. Whatever name they’re sold under, they’re DEEEEELISH!! The Dorset ones are my favourite, with Bush Barbie close behind. The chili Cha Cha Cha bottle is GB’s pick ... I won’t fight him for those ones. πŸ˜† Our other splurge was to help us grow our own local food ... a couple of herbs to replenish my back-door herb pots, a couple more residents for my veggie patch & ...


... a couple of native finger limes. These will be potted up this weekend ... after we discovered we’d used the last of our potting mix. We MAY have also introduced Lynette to our favourite gin & vodka distillery, Pechey Distillery. They are literally just down the road from where we live ... five minutes down the road - how convenient. πŸ˜‚ No purchase for us, as we have already been enjoying a tipple purchased at a cellar door visit last year, but Lynette adopted a bottle to give it a good home. πŸ˜‚ We rounded out our play date with a late lunch picnic at one of our local dams ... also just down the road from our house. πŸ˜‰ Pechey really is a great spot to call home & share with our friends. πŸ˜„ We munched on some of our olives, some Bunya cheeses (also purchased at the food festival) & some crackers while we soaked up the serenity ... & commented that some good soaking rain is still desperately needed in our catchment, as the dam levels are still very low. All in all, it was a relaxing way to spend a Sunday & if you’re looking for a fun foodie experience, keep a weekend in May aside next year & come & check out the Hampton Food Festival. They have a FB page you can follow to keep up with news.

Right now, though, I think I hear the kettle calling my name, so I’ll sign off. Have a wonderful weekend no matter what you’re up to. Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 




Friday, 14 May 2021

An Outing & Catch-up!

Greetings to all of you lovelies out there in blogland! I hope your week has been wonderful. Mine has zipped by in a bit of a blur that included GB being away for a few days for work, a lovely lunch with a friend & a relaxing stitching catch-up with a couple of other friends. And it kicked off with an outing for Mother’s’ Day last Sunday ...


Here’s me with my Mama. πŸ₯° And she’s modeling her Mothers’ Day gifties ... a colourful new scarf to brighten her winter wardrobe & a pretty new bag for when she’s playing ladies & just wants something to carry purse, keys & phone in. Then it was time for a Mothers’ Day outing ...


About 15 minutes drive from our home is the beautiful Ravensbourne National Park. Mum is pointing to the walking track we thought about checking out ... but decided lunch was better. πŸ˜‚


It was busier than we’d thought it would be, but we snagged a table for our outdoor feast. Definitely a lovely way to spend time with Mum for her special day. πŸ₯°

And Mother’s’ Day motivated me to hit the sewing machine, which means I actually added something to my OPAM tally ... FINALLY! πŸ˜‰ After doing the end of month blog hop this afternoon, I can see that many others have been more productive than me, with ...

65 FINISHES 

... recorded for April! Well done, everyone! And some of you reported progress on longer-term projects, too, which is great to see. The random draw winner for April is ...

Congrats, Narelle! Drop me an email & I’ll send you your prize PDF pattern.

Right now, though, I hear the kettle calling my name, so I’m off to make a cupcake ... my order from Tambourine Tea arrived last week, so I’m enjoying Mango Tea, Black Tea with Lemon & Ginger, Summer Night Dream tea & Apple & Cinnamon tea. The hardest part is deciding which one I feel like. πŸ˜‚ I wish you all a relaxing & enjoyable weekend. Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 



Friday, 30 April 2021

Missing Mojo!



So many pretty fabrics, so many projects & designs in various stages of creation ... so little focus or motivation! SIGH! πŸ™„ Do you have periods of manic creativity followed by times when your sewing mojo absconds to the Bahamas without you?? Or is that just me? πŸ€” How do you get your mojo to give up it’s holiday in an island paradise to come home & get your groove happening again? I’ve decided to try lighting my creative fire by spending some quality time wallowing in my fabric stash. I’m not sure if it’s working, but the pretty colours are giving me a rainbow on a grey, overcast & dreary ‘hilltop’ day. 🌈πŸ₯°

For those of you whose mojo hasn’t decamped to tropical destinations, here’s your end-of-month reminder to update your OPAM finishes list for the month on your sidebar & email me your April finish tally. Hopefully some of you have had more luck corralling your creativity than me. πŸ˜‰ But ... it’s another long weekend here ... three in a row is messing with my mental calendar, but the sleep-ins are welcome! ... so I’m hoping to jumpstart my mojo again. I’ll let you know how that goes ... stay tuned! πŸ˜† Whether you’re enjoying an extended weekend or just making the most of a usual one, I hope you enjoy it & find time to enjoy some creative pursuits. Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 

Sunday, 18 April 2021

Autumn & OPAM

Hello there! I hope you all had a relaxing Easter. GB & I enjoyed the quiet time at home, though I confess the public holidays & short weeks have scrambled my mental calendar & derailed my sewing mojo ... but the extra sleep-ins were nice! πŸ˜†

As a result of the missing mojo (sounds like a Nancy Drew adventure! πŸ˜‚) there hasn’t been much sewing, stitching or designing going on, but the mild autumn weather has seen GB & me out in our garden. While a lot of our energy has gone to weed-taming after our recent lovely rain, we have also been enjoying the abundance of colour & growth in our back yard. With no sewing pics to share, I thought I’d share some garden sneaky-peekies instead. πŸ˜‰



The marigolds have sprung up in huge numbers & are currently spreading autumn cheer near our back steps. Some people aren’t fond of marigolds because of their pungent scent, but I love the cheerful splash of colour they bring to the garden & that they attract beneficial insects to our yard. These have all grown from seeds Mum collected for me from her garden, along with some nasturtiums that are a bit overshadowed by the marigolds. I’m hoping that now they’re established, these cheerful chaps will come back season after season ... I love self-seeding cottage garden flowers. 😊



The Mexican Sage is so pretty at the moment, with its grey foliage & bright pinky-purple flower spikes. Best of all, it’s survived our extended drought period & is tough as old boots ... pretty boot, though! πŸ˜†



And proving you can be productive wherever you find yourself planted ... we have a very healthy pumpkin vine emerging from our compost bin that has about 10 pumpkins of varying sizes on it. This is the biggest & it should be ready to pick just in time for pumpkin soup cooking. πŸ˜‹ Funnily enough, the two pumpkin vines I purposely planted in our fruit & vege patch haven’t yielded any pumpkins ... go figure!



And our strawberry plants have thrown out some runners, which have been snipped & planted out according to Gardening Australia instructions. There are even a few fruiting flowers on the older plants ... hence the mesh covering to keep the were-rabbits out ... Wallace & Gromit fans understand! πŸ˜‚ Actually ... the mesh is more to stop our resident persnickety possum, Percy, & the cheeky king parrots ... but that doesn’t sound as exciting as were-rabbits, does it?! 🀣


And as spent plants are pulled out or given a hard prune back, I’ve collected some seed for next season. Do you save seeds? I’m new to doing so, so it will be interesting to see my success ... or otherwise. πŸ˜† We’ve also dug over the vege beds & planted some snow pea seeds, with hopes of adding some more crops next weekend ... rain & other commitments meant it didn’t happen this weekend.

So that’s been taking my time in recent weeks, rather than sewing ...but I know many of YOU have been playing in your creative spaces because I’ve just completed the March OPAM hop around. There were ...

61 FINISHES 

... for March. WOW! Well done everyone! And well done to those who made some progress on some long term projects, too. The winner of the random draw prize is ...


Congrats, Christine! Drop me an email & I’ll send your PDF pattern prize. But right now, I think it’s time for a hot drink to stave off the cool air that’s drifting in as the sun starts to go down, so I’ll wish you all a wonderful week. 😊 Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 

Sunday, 4 April 2021

Easter Greetings & OPAM Reminder!

Easter Greetings to you, my bloggy buddies, from the top of our slightly soggy ‘hill’. With a four-day long weekend over the Easter break, GB & I had been planning to spend time in the garden, trying to win it back from the weeds. The weather, however, has had other ideas & there will be no gardening here ... unless we make use of a snorkel. πŸ˜‚ Still ... we’re just so thankful to have ALL of our tanks full of water for the first time ever, that we’re happily enjoying the rain from the comfort of inside, where we’re watching movies, reading, stitching & snoozing ... that’s GB you can hear snoring! 🀣

I also tackled a bit of machine sewing to make a face mask for GB who has struggled to find something that fits without sliding up under his glasses ... this is the first time QLD has had mandatory mask wearing, so we hadn’t had to worry about masks previously during the zombie apocalypse.


A little disheveled, but cute ... the mask, too! πŸ˜† I have to admit I won’t be mass producing masks ... let’s just say curved seams aren’t my favourite thing. πŸ™„ And hopefully we won’t need the masks for too much longer. At least it was a finish to add to my tally, though.

And speaking of tallies ... she says, segueing smoothly to her next point! πŸ˜‚ ... we’ve crossed over into a new month so OPAMers ... update your sidebar lists & email me your March tally so I can update the spreadsheet. Maybe we’ll all have additions to our April tally after this weekend. 😜

Well ... that’s it from me this wet Easter Sunday, I’m off to make myself a cup of apple & cinnamon tea to sip while I stitch in front of a fave movie ... hmmm ... shall I help save the world from super villains, an undead mummy, or a giant killer shark?!? 😜 Whatever you’re doing today, stay safe, stay well, keep stitching & keep smiling. 😊 Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS


HE IS RISEN! 

Friday, 26 March 2021

March Madness!

Well, hello there, all you lovely bloggers buddies! I know ... it’s been so long since I popped in here to catch up with you that you thought I’d been kidnapped by a shape-shifting dragon who had whisked me away to some exotic location to keep me safe from an evil sorcerer hellbent on ruling the world. (Just quietly, why would you want to rule the world when it’s such a mess??! πŸ˜‚) OK ... maybe I need to stop reading fantasy fiction for a little while! Tee! Hee! Hee! 

The real reason for my blogging MIA is much more mundane ... March Madness. πŸ˜‰ You see, March is one of our busiest months of the year, so I just haven’t squeezed in time for a blog catch-up ... until now. So, fair warning, this will probably be a long post with lots of pics ... Chookyblue ... you’re gonna need a cuppa! 😜

So ... my last post, I shared a teasing sneaky-peaky of my Girls Stitch In projects ... well ... we had a fantastic time with a live video to launch GSI on the Saturday morning when we would usually be gathering & lots of stitchers from all around Australia grabbed their kits. My projects ...


Ta! Da! “Be Your Blooming Self!”. The drawstring project bag is surrounded by various sized pockets to stash your tools for a stitching day & the matching ruler pouch also features a pocket to store your rotary cutters & scissors.


Here’s the other side of the bag & more pockets, as well as a couple of my signature rosette flowers. 


And a closer look at the main stitchery. The inspiration for the theme of this project was ... as women, we are often made to feel like we have to be & do everything ... we feel we have to have a career, family, look catwalk ready, prepare gourmet uber-healthy meals, spend hours in the gym, keep a perfect house, juggle all of life’s’ balls’ while never breaking a sweat. And we can fall into the trap of looking at those around us who seem to have the “Insta-worthy” life while we feel we’re failing. But if you look around the garden, you’ll see all of the plants just doing their own thing, adding their own unique beauty to the world & never comparing themselves to the plant beside them. This bag is a reminder that we just need to be our blooming selves. 😊 

Huge thanks to Marion & Steph of The Quilters Angel for inviting me to be a Girls Stitch In guest designer this year & for finding a way to keep the event happening even when it couldn’t happen in person. Thanks to Lauren of Molly & Mama for also sharing her lovely talents as a guest designer. Patterns for “Be Your Blooming Self” are available from the Quilters Angel online store & if you’re quick, there may still be a few kits in the luscious Tilda fabrics I played with. 😁

I almost forgot ... before GSI there was time for a lunch catchup with a couple of blogging buddies ...


Fabulous Fiona & the lovely Janice ... & Janice’s hubby Mick who was official quilt-holder & photographer 😜 ... & I caught up for lunch. I’ve been chatting with Janice via blogs for years now & we’ve enjoyed a couple of play dates when she & Mick are passing through our area & I’m lucky enough to catch up with Fiona at least once a month for stitching time. Lots of fun & chats enjoyed. 😁

Next on the busy schedule was an extended birthday weekend for yours truly. 😜 Hey ... if you have to add another number to your age, you may as well enjoy it, right?! 😝 So last Friday saw GB join my folks & a busload of saucy seniors (GB & I lowered the average age somewhat! πŸ˜‚) for a day tour to Brisbane where we headed for the river ...


... for a lunch time cruise on the Kookaburra Queen paddle boat. Lunch was a delish smorgasbord & the views ...


Skyscrapers & sailboats ...


... river panoramas ...


... heavenly historic buildings. And enjoyed with some of my special people ...


Dad (who I don’t at all look like! πŸ™„πŸ˜), Mum, birthday girl & GB. If you’re looking for a a relaxing way to see Brisbane’s river views, I can recommend a cruise on the Kookaburra Queen. Thanks for the birthday treat, Ma & Pa. 😘

So then on Saturday ... my actual birthday ... & the autumn solstice for those aspiring pagans 😜 ... I received a phone call from the lovely Marion to say she was on her way to drop in. When she arrived ...


... I found she’d collected a couple of stitching buddies along the way, as well as Angel-in-training Miss Zoe ... & a rainbow birthday cake. 🌈 So ... I put the kettle on & we enjoyed an impromptu tea party. 😁 Thankfully, they are true friends & fellow stitchers so overlooked the fact that most of the table was covered in sewing clutter. πŸ˜†


Rainbow cake ... enjoyed from pretty china plates & eaten with vintage cake forks. 😁 Thanks Marion, Miss Zoe, Kerry & Rachel for helping me celebrate another successful trip around the sun. 😘 And adding to the birthday fun & calorie count, GB took me for a Sunday drive down the ‘hill’ to Esk for celebratory coffee & cake ...


... or in my case, iced tea & butterscotch slice ... YUMMO! 😍 Add lots of birthday messages on FB, texts & emails & it really was a fun birthday weekend. Thank you to everyone who has helped make the last year a good one ... & here’s to another trip round the sun full of adventures. πŸ˜‰πŸ˜˜

And that’s about it from me. I promise to pop back a bit sooner next time, but hope you’ve enjoyed catching up on my mischief. πŸ˜‰ And now ... I think it’s time for a late lunch, so I’ll sign off. Have a wonderful weekend, everyone. Til next time ...

BIRTHDAY BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS













Tuesday, 9 March 2021

Losing Days!

Hello, hello! Yes ... I'm still here, I've just been somewhat snowed under with grown up job work, design deadlines & trying to keep up with house chores ... I think I'm failing at that last one! 😜 I can't believe it's mid-March already when I'm sure it was Christmas just last week! 😝 I seem to be losing days from my weeks ... AGAIN!!

But ... My Secret Squirrel projects for Girls Stitch In are finished, the instructions are written & printed & I've even recorded some short tutorial videos thanks to the wonderful assistance of Steph from The Quilters Angel. Steph & Marion are the dynamic duo behind my fave quilt shop & hostesses with the mostest for our virtual Girls Stitch In. If you'd like to join the fun, you only have a few days left to sign up before the fun launches this Saturday. Those who join us will receive two exclusive new patterns from yours truly & Lauren from Molly & Mama, the fabric & embellishments kits for both projects, pre-printed stitcheries so you can start stitching as soon as your parcel arrives, treats, discounts & all bundled into a bespoke Quilters Angel drawstring pouch to keep your treasures safe. Not only that, you get to join an exclusive Facebook group to share pics, chats & pick up tips from Lauren & I ... AND will be given access to some short video tutorials. Talk about value for money!! 😁

While I still can't show you my projects, I can show you another sneaky-peeky ...


Still not giving too much away! 😜 The pinks & purples were a wee bit challenging for this teal/aqua/green gal, but I LOVE how my projects came together. 😁 To join the fun, pop over HERE to sign up.

Another good thing about me having deadlines to meet was ... I got to add some finishes to my OPAM tally! 😁 Big thanks to those who remembered to email their finishes through. It's a big help when I'm a bit time poor. And although the year is still young, my tallying & blog hopping showed me that there has been a lot of creating going on. Well done to you all. 😁 So, for the start of OPAM 2021 we had ...

52 Finishes for January 
&
50 Finishes for February 

YAY! 😊 And the random draw winners were:

&

Congrats, gals! Drop me an email & I'll send you each a PDF copy of a Tag Along Teddies pattern to play with. 😁

But now, GB has arrived home from work & it's time to think about dinner, so I'll sign off for now. Take care of yourselves & keep smiling. 😊 Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS

Sunday, 21 February 2021

Sunday Stitching!

Hello, hello! How is everyone this warm & sunny Sunday? Well ... It's warm & sunny in my little corner of the world. 😜 And I have to say, a cheerful, sunny afternoon that I'm about to spend at the sewing machine is a nice end to a bit of a "BLAH!" Week. You know ... Those weeks where nothing BIG is wrong, but lots of little niggles all build up until you end up feeling like the poor camel who has just had the final straw dumped on his already overloaded back? Yeah ... That was our household this week as both GB & I hit the wall of crazy-busy grownup jobs colliding with too-long-since-we-had-a-proper-holiday. SIGH! But ... With a sunny rest day at home, we're doing our best to Taylor Swift it ... You know ... Shake it off. 😜

And my remedy will be some quality time with my trusty Husqui, making up part two of my Girls Stitch In design. Want a sneaky-peeky?? OK! πŸ˜‰


Ta da! The BACK of one of the stitcheries for this fun project. 😜 Hmmm ... Don't look too closely at some of my cheaty thread jumps. 😝 I've had fun stitching this project & can't WAIT to share it with everyone who's joining us for our epic virtual Girls Stitch In! The numbers for this fun event are limited & filling fast, so why not grab a few friends, book your spot & arrange to meet up with each other to work on your GSI projects. Part of the fun you're invited to join when you pay is joining our exclusive FB chat group. My fellow guest designer, the Lovely Lauren of Molly & Mama, & I are both sharing sneaky-peekies, short video spots & tips & tricks over there ... & having a blast! 😁 To join us, pop over to The Quilters Angel online shop HERE to sign up. Just be careful you don't get too sidetracked by all the other goodies in their shop! 😝

But now, I'm off to sew. Have a fantastic week & remember to be kind ... It costs you nothing & may have a lasting impact on the people around you. 😘 Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS

Friday, 12 February 2021

Reverse Stitching ... SIGH!!

GAH! Don't you hate it when you measure twice, cut once, join seams & STILL find you've miscalculated by quarter of an inch?! πŸ™„ 



Working on my Secret Squirrel project for Girls Stitch In, so can't show you too much, but I can tell you that the GSI kits are going like hot cakes, so if you're an Aussie stitcher wanting to be part of the fun, hop over to The Quilters Angel to book your kit so you don't miss out. 

Meanwhile ... I'm back to reverse stitching ... I think I need a cup of tea to fortify myself! 😝☕️ Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS

Wednesday, 10 February 2021

Technical Problems!

Hmmmmm ... Something went a little skewwhiff with my post below that ... For some reason ... I can't fix. πŸ™„ So ... Here is the sneaky-peeky of my Girls Stitch In project ...


Well ... I couldn't show you TOO much, could I?? It would spoil the surprise. Tee! Hee! Hee! If you would like to join the fun of Girls Stitch In pop over HERE.

I'm SOOOOOOOO excited to be part of this fun stitching event ... I can't wait to see who joins us. 😊 Happy stitching! 

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS 

Sad-Happy News!

Hello all! Sorry to be a bit MIA. Life just seems to be flashing past at the moment ... Busy grown-up job, working on Secret Squirrel projects & great M bling about a cranky back & a broken tooth ... SIGH!! But I'm finally dropping in to share some sad-happy news.

The sad part is ... Girls Stitch In won't be held in the big school hall in Highfields where it usually takes place. There won't actually be a face-to-face event THIS YEAR (all will revert to usual format next year). BUT ... Girls Stitch In IS going ahead ... In a digital kind of format ... YAY! You see, Marvellous Marion & Stupendous Steph of The Quilters Angel who host this fantastic stitching event were hearing from lots of lovely stitching gals that they were unable to come as planned due to the uncertainty caused by state border closures & other Covid measures. So instead of just cancelling our fun stitching weekend, they've put weeks of research & planning into taking GSI to a new place. It's easiest to explain if I borrow the official announcement:

This is how it will work:  
We will have a limited number of 'Girls Stitch In Packs' available for purchase, which will include:


•    2 Brand new patterns created by our guest designers Lauren from
      
Molly and Mama, and Kris from  especially for this event.
•    Both of the project kits which contain 3.5 metres of fabric, both designs pre-printed onto fabric, embroidery thread packs containing DMC and Cottage Garden Threads and embellishment packs – just as at the event,  these projects remain a mystery until you receive your pack! We will be sharing sneaky  peeks but the full project won’t be revealed until the original event date in March.
•    Exclusive access to a private Girls Stitch In Facebook Group where you will have
     direct contact with Lauren and Kris as well as fun and interesting behind the scenes chatter, information and live videos.
•    Exclusive tutorial videos from our designers on their projects, along with their favourite tips.
•      Discount Vouchers from a variety of online shops
•      A selection of special gifts

And all this comes in a one-of-a-kind Bag!

By doing the event this way,
we can all feel safe by not having to travel, we can still surround ourselves with a bunch of likeminded stitchers, and we can celebrate womanhood by taking time out for you and embrace all things girlie and stitching! 
 
Please be assured – this online format is not forever, and will not be replacing our future events. We are all in an extra ordinary time, and although we know many love  attending our events in person, just as we love hosting them, for the time being, this is our best option.

Pre-orders of the Limited Edition Girls Stitch In packs are available now and will be posted out on the original GSI date (13th March).
The packs will contain all information regarding the exclusive Facebook Group and video tutorials, but these will also be emailed to you using the email address you purchase the pack with.

So ... Wherever you are in Australia (sorry overseas friends ... Postage & linkups OS is just too tricky at the moment) you can join the fun of a unique Girls Stitch In event. I know a few of you have already pre-booked your special pack & I am SOOOOOO EXCITED!! πŸ€— I'll share a bit more as we get closer, but I'll leave you with a sneaky-peeky of my project starting point ...

Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS

(P.S. I'm having some issues with my blogging program so sorry for odd layout or giant photos. πŸ™„)


Tuesday, 26 January 2021

OPAM 2021 Is A Go!

Here we go again! 😜 Yes, OPAM (One Project A Month for the uninitiated!) is back for another year of encouraging we creative types to ... Well ... CREATE! πŸ˜ And hopefully get some of the projects on our "To Do" list crossed off & added to our "Finishes" list. OPAM is all about taking some time out of busy schedules to recharge our creative batteries by playing with fabric, threads, wools, cottons & needles of all sorts. The goal is to finish at least one project per month for the year, which will give us a minimum of 12 finishes by the time we next sing "Auld Lang Syne" ... Or we will have at least made significant progress on some longer-term projects.

For a new year of OPAM, we need a new logo button ...



Thanks to my Beloved Geek Boy, we've got one. 😁 And do you see that rather large number on the badge? That's how many projects have been recorded by OPAMers since we started! Over 53,000 finishes! WOWSERS!! Are you ready to add some more to the tally by playing along? Let's keep it simple ... 

HOW DO I JOIN OPAM 2020?
1. Send me an email to tell me you'd like to play along. Please make sure you include: Your NAME, your BLOG ADDRESS, your EMAIL ADDRESS. My email address is: kris@tagalongteddies.com.au
2Right click on the new OPAM logo & "save as" to your files. Add it to your blog sidebar with a link back to my blog ... In case others who visit your blog would like to play along.
3. Under the OPAM badge on your sidebar, add a list of  2021 FINISHES which shows your finishes each month. You can add this as a blog page if you prefer ... As long as it's clear which finishes you've added each month.
4. At the end of each month, update your list of finishes (a blog post with photos is great to share & encourage others, too) AND email me your final tally for the month. Each month I'll choose a random prize winner who will receive a PDF copy of a Tag Along Teddies pattern I've designed as a fun, quick project.
5. Projects must be COMPLETELY FINISHED before being added to your tally ... Quilts have to be quilted & bound, cross stitcheries have to be framed or made into a project etc. if you aren't sure whether your project counts ... Email me & ask. 😁
6. Tallies should only include soft crafts ... Sewing, quilting, embroidery, cross/long stitch, crochet, knitting ... Again, if you're uncertain, email to check.
7. HAVE FUN CREATING!

There won't be a cut off date this year for sign up, people can just keep joining the fun as we go along. 😁 After a few weeks, I'll add a list of this year's OPAMers to my sidebar so you can hop around visiting & encouraging each other. It means we'll all have a world-wide cheer squad. 😁 (You can still see last year's participants list on my sidebar) And remember this is a LOW STRESS challenge, so if you have a month (or two or three!!) where life gets in the way or you're working on long term projects & don't have a finish to record ... IT'S OK! 😁

I think that covers the basics ... If questions come up as we go, I'll share them in a blog post. Other than that, I hope you all enjoy playing along with me again this year ... It's a nice, low key nudge for us all (me included, since I should set a good example, right?! 😜 ) to create & finish projects. Some of us are SERIAL STARTERS! Tee! Hee! Hee! 

Right now, though, I'm off to help my BBL cricket team win an important game. πŸ˜‰ Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS

Sunday, 24 January 2021

Countdown!

OK ... Now I have that 80's anthem "Final Countdown" by Europe stuck with in my head ... Along with 80's glam rock, long hair, big guitar riff mental pictures! πŸ˜‚ So with that soundtrack running through my head, here's the announcement you've all (well ... SOME of you! 😝) have been waiting for ...



It's on again & signup kicks off ...

TUESDAY JANUARY 26

Many of you have played along with OPAM ... One Project A Month ... For years, so you know the drill, but I'll post the guidelines on Tuesday as an intro for our newbies & a reminder for our repeat offenders. πŸ˜‰ This fun, low-stress challenge is a great way to encourage ourselves to finish at least one project each month & take some time out from busy lives to be creative. It also gives us a world-wide cheer squad of like-minded crafters to chat to & be inspired by. 😊

So ... I hope a few of you will play along ... See you back here on Tuesday. πŸ˜‰ Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS! 

CHEERS!
KRIS

Tuesday, 12 January 2021

New Year, New Design!

Well ... It seems the new year is behaving like the last & just ZIPPING by at a great rate of knots! This does not bode well for me achieving everything I'd like to in 2021. 😜 However, they say (I've yet to work out who THEY are, just quietly?! 😝) that the first step to take in achieving goals is to ... Take the first step! 😝 So I've spent quite a bit of time in the last couple of weeks working on a new design ...


... You didn't REALLY think I was going to reveal too much yet, did you?! Tee! Hee! Hee! It's actually my project that I'll be sharing at this year's Girls Stitch In weekend hosted by the Marvellous Marion & Stupendous Steph of The Quilters Angel in March. 


This is always a fantastic time of fun, friendship, food & of course, stitching. Places are limited so book quickly so you can come & play. With so many events being cancelled last year, I think we all deserve to treat ourselves. πŸ˜‰ Lauren from Molly & Mama is my fellow guest designer who is not only a talented stitcher, she's also a lovely person. 😊 For more details or to book your spot, go HERE.

And while that's my first project START for the year, we need to wrap up the last of the FINISHES for last year. I've finally tallied the December finishes & there were ...

133 FINISHES!

YAY! Well done everyone! There must've been quite a few handmade Christmas gifties given! 😜 And the winner of the random draw is ...


Congrats, Maria! Drop me an email & I'll send your PDF prize pattern. Thank you to everyone for playing along with me for OPAM 2020. I always feel privileged to share your creative journeys. I hope that in what was a crazy ol' year last year, OPAM helped give you some positive goals to keep you creating. I found a great quote over on what my blogging buddy Chookyblue calls "The Dark side" ... Facebook! 😝 It said ...

"To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it!" (Kurt Vonnegot)

I think it also makes your soul sing & that positivity then splashes into all parts of life to lift us up, as well as those around us. Which is one of the reasons that I'll be running OPAM again this year. 😁 Sign up will open towards the end of January, so start making a list of projects you'd like to see on your list of finishes by this time next year & join the fun of aiming to finish at least One Project A Month in 2021. Stay tuned! 😁

But for now ... I need to go & rustle up something tasty for dinner, so I'll sign off. Wherever you are, please take care of yourself & those around you. Stay safe, stay well, keep stitching & keep smiling. 😊 Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!

CHEERS!
KRIS



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