Thursday, 29 May 2014

The last week in May

Here are some of my phone photos from this week. I'm still trying to unpack and organise the house. I also had to finish painting the french door frames, and as you can see, the paint hadn't finished drying before Mr Lui came wandering through. Little paw prints all over my new floor... bad kitty! A little bit of baking soda on a damp cloth took it right off though luckily.

I've started a new crochet project! More on that later, but it's a blanket. Makes me happy to be working on another one. 

I found some cushions and blankets to unpack this week! Made me feel much better to have some handmade goodness on the couch again. Lui approved too and could hardly wait for me to get up one night so he could steal my seat amongst the cushions.

The weather has been changeable - northwesterly storms ahead of southerly storms, red sunrises and frosty mornings, apricot sunsets, stormclouds followed by rainbows. Winter is here though and it's time to get used to frosty mornings again. I wish I knew where I'd packed my winter woollies like my hats and gloves, and my winter duvet and pyjamas! This weekend I'll be having a good dig through the boxes in the garage, here's hoping I find something useful and not just more stuff that needs to be organised away...

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

May flowers

My garden is a bit neglected at present. I did try to keep an eye on it during the past two months, but it was a bit difficult to keep up with when I wasn't living there too and the weeds have gotten completely out of hand. Luckily I have a lot of perennials and seasonal stars planted, and they keep going according to their own calendars. Late autumn brings a lot of golden leaves and berries, seed heads and browning petals. There is also the first batch of the winter bloomers, and even a couple of rather confused spring bulbs who have decided to put in an appearance.

So, even though it's a bit of a tangled mess outside, there is still enough beauty to lift my spirits when I glance out the window. I can't wait to finish my sanding and painting so I can get out there and tidy things up a bit... maybe it's not so bad that we're coming into winter, at least things will slow down!

Here are this month's flowers, clockwise from top left: snowberries; salvia; the first of the Fairy Blush camellia (one of my winter stars, you will be seeing more of this!); the yellow clematis seed head (I'm enjoying how this changes, it's less silky and more fuzzy this month); fuchsia Lottie Hobby; an early earlicheer; olives colouring up; a late hydrangea; bright leaves on the Cercis; the chrysanthemum which have changed colour from orange to white; wintersweet (another winter star - I literally wait all year for this to bloom, I love it!); a late bloom on the Queen Elizabeth rose. Middle: my indoor cyclamen are in bloom. Time to distribute them around all the rooms in the house.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Nearly time

You guys... it's nearly over! We're moving back home this weekend. The earthquake repairs are finally done and the house is freshly painted. There are a couple of door and window frames that I need to finish that weren't part of our repairs and I'll be getting onto that as quickly as I can so they're ready before winter. Then it's getting the house in order again... unpacking all the boxes and stuff that was crammed into cupboards, putting up the old curtains again (or maybe new ones? If I'm lucky) and rearranging the furniture.

These are some Instagram photos from the last few weeks. I had a bucket of feijoas to deal with. I made some feijoa chutney which turned out nice - sweet and spicy - and ate quite a few of them with yoghurt. The rest I eventually chopped up and put in the freezer. I have a recipe for a pear and gingerbread upside down pudding that's really good, and I'm thinking the feijoas would be an interesting substitute! In the meantime I have lemon drizzle cake to have with my coffee while I flip through some pages of garden inspiration.

The vase above is the one I mentioned in my last post. I love the geometric textured pattern, and it's a great way to display the last single blooms of the season.

We had to remove our lino in the kitchen for new flooring. It was leaving sticky white patches behind until I remembered that my craft heat gun was stashed in a cupboard nearby. A blast of heat made the lino lift quite easily - hooray!

Autumn's on its way out and mornings and evenings are chilly. I love a pile of handmade quilts and blankets on my bed. Can't wait to start a new blanket... just let me at my yarn stash!

Friday, 2 May 2014

Watching the days go by

It's been an unsettling few weeks, waiting out the time until I can go back to my home again. In two weeks' time we should be able to go back in - whether or not the house is completely finished, as these things have a way of taking longer than planned. I'm dying to start a new crochet blanket! I was happy to finish my Summertime blanket but I miss having something I can just pick up and work on without having to think about it too much! I've done a few small projects... a coat hanger here, wrist warmers there, and I've made some rounds which will become a cushion when I can get home and go through my stash to find some stuffing. Then I'll go through my stash and find some yarn for a new blanket. My stash! I miss it so.

I did pack a few small projects to bring with me including my Project Life album. I've only got November and December to finish for last year and then I can start on this year! It's a bit of a joke isn't it... but the finished result is worth it. There aren't many flowers in the garden here so I picked some foliage and teamed it with cyclamen flowers from my houseplants and rowan berries from a neighbourhood walk. The berries have lasted well and I've had variations on this arrangement going for several weeks.

Last week I went window shopping at The Tannery, a Victorian-style shopping arcade that's been developed recently here in Christchurch. It's a lovely way to spend an afternoon, much nicer than a mall. I wasn't going to buy anything but I found a gorgeous vase (photo to come later) and then remembered a voucher I had in my wallet from Christmas... saved for just such an occasion. So I managed to go shopping without spending any money... always a plus!

In other news, we've had three heavy rain storms leading to flooding in the past six weeks. What the hell, weather? If it's not one thing it's another, that's for sure, and I wonder what winter will bring...

These photos are from Instagram where I'm entertaining myself these days. Is anyone else on Instagram? I'm here.


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