About Me

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With the help of my friends, I co-ordinate "The Craft Group" which is a place for women to gather and do craft! We share a whole range of things, from craft to the small things that matter to us right up to understanding the whole meaning of life! I learn so much from everyone, I thought a blog would be the perfect way to record the memories! The "Plus..." is all about extra bits 'n pieces that I have found and would love to show you. Welcome to our Craft Group. Please feel free to say hi, leave a comment or become a follower! Enjoy!

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Little Denim Backpack

Some people are just so clever!
Jenni and Leanne met Anne K in the train on the way home from the Craft Show at Darling Harbour this year. Leanne had previously made a bag, from a pattern, and Anne was admiring it. She had a good look at it and said "I think I will make one like that too."
 Leanne would have been happy to share the pattern.
 Pattern shmattern. Who needs a pattern? (That is not a quote from Anne by the way). 
So home she went, inspired by all things crafty and she made this cute denim backpack, just creating it out of her stash of fabrics and her clever mind.

Cute project Anne. 

Monday, 27 August 2012

2 gift quilts for 2 girls

You know how sometimes something bad happens and just because you were a small part of the series of events you get the blame? Don't you hate that!!!?

Well, I am doing the opposite. I am claiming all sorts of undeserved glory for these 2 lovely quilts!

Pat, at The Craft Group, asked me if I knew anyone who could help to make 2 quilts as a farewell gift. Their Pastor was moving to another place and they wanted a special gift for his 2 daughters.

Well, it's pretty hard to find someone willing to do that but I recommended Bev because she is a) a lovely quilter b) she knows the girls who are leaving and c) she is a very generous, gracious, giving lady, so it would be worth asking her!

Well, I really had nothing else to do with the quilts apart from holding them up to show off to everyone, but they are so lovely, I will happily bask in the glory of another successfully finished project!  ;)

I think Bev did most of the work but she said it was a group effort in the end. They had chosen colours that were the girls' favourite without realising it. I think they are lovely personal gifts with lots of love poured into them. 
Please don't run and hide from me because you think I am going to dob you in to make something for someone else! (But you never know...)

Saturday, 25 August 2012

A Simple Act of Kindness

How nice is it when someone was really kind to you?

The message of this video is to pass it on...


Friday, 24 August 2012

Special Star Card

Here is something I really want to show you.
When I recently jumped into a new decade, the card making ladies at The Craft Group set to work to make me something really special.

First I received this beautifully made box incorporating a plastic window which gave me a glimpse of a special card inside. Apparently the window was Hans' idea. That is Elly's husband. Don't you love it when husbands (who have totally different hobbies than their wives) look on and give suggestions for our creations. Sometimes we might think....''you can't be serious!" and sometimes, like with this window idea it's more like 'now why didn't I think of that!?'

Box by Elly.  

Inside was this bulging card, tied closed with a ribbon, full of birthday good wishes and blessings!

When I opened the ribbon and spread the card out I saw that 12 ladies had made a special insert for the card. They made a big star card to display them in.
(Ignore the '50' on the front. Pretend it says '30' which is how I feel. No? Oh OK then.... '40').

Look at the tiny delicate flowers on the front which they actually made from scratch. Impressive!

Mini flowers by Elly.
I untied the ribbon and opened up the card. I tied the ribbon again and displayed it like this for many weeks.

They wanted me to match the insert with the person who made it. I guessed a few but was not that good at it. I guessed the first one was from my Mum, Wil,  because it had a photo of a little 'me' on it. No one else has such cute pictures in their craft stash!

by Wil and Mim
by Ruth and Kitty
by Robin and Jean
by Pat and Elly
by Cheryl and Rita
by  Anne and Valda
There was a really special birthday wish in the bottom of the box.

It is really more than a card! It was a lovely gift and very touching that they would go to all that trouble for me!

Very clever ladies and very thoughtful. You made me feel so special and loved!

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

A holiday....not!

On friday morning my husband and I went on a lovely early morning drive. We left home at 5:30am and it felt like we were going on holidays! (That's the only time I ever drive anywhere at that hour!)
Our drive took us over the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

I love 'our' bridge. It is much prettier driving over it than driving through the Harbour tunnel.

Then we got to our destination... The 'before' shot, still smiling and enjoying bending my knees.

Then, here goes, I will be brave and show you the 'after' shot which my husband so sweetly took! (I will make it as small as I can!)

And here is the lovely salmon lunch 2 days later which I could hardly stomach!

Here I am home again. Knee reconstructed with a new ACL! Yay.

So, here I sit. I have a basket of fun things to do and read during my recovery but I haven't been up to touching anything yet. I am keen to do plenty of blogging though as soon as I feel like doing something!
I have learnt a few things from this experience:

* Don't throw a javelin if you haven't thrown one for 30 years.
* If you are going to hospital, pretend you are going on holidays... until you can pretend no longer.
* Find out early in life if you are intolerant to Codine. It could save you a lot of nausea.
* When you feel crook after an anaesthetic, remember it will pass... eventually... I hope.
* Appreciate friends and family who give such lovely well wishes.
* Use the experience to remember to pray more for people with chronic pain and life long illnesses.
* Praise God for every experience and new beginnings.
* Fill your head with lovely songs. I had this comforting one  on 'repeat' in my mind many times.

Greg Attwells' version from his Indi Hymnal album.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Lalaloopsy crocheted cousins

Meet the latest in Nadia's creations.
Lalaloopsey is one of the latest crazes in little girls' dolls. Did I know this? No. Not until I saw Nadia's dolls and was enlightened by the young mums and grandmas of 'The Craft Group'. (I really need to watch more TV... not).
Anyway, here are Nadia's lala cousins... 

(she sells them if anyone in the group is interested)

Very clever Nadia. 
Did I tell you that after having 3 sons, Nadia is expecting a girl?
Watch this space, no doubt, for Nadia's future pretty little girl crochet projects!

Monday, 13 August 2012

Pretty Nails

My girls love to do their nails in fun and creative ways. Recently when Annalee was sitting for days after her knee operation, the smell of nail polish often permeated the room.
This is one design she did for Heidi:

and then she did these rainbow nails for Heidi:

For herself, she experimented with shading 2 different colours. Black and Burgundy:

You can see the shading clearer here. She found out how to do it on the internet. It involved pouring a little polish onto some plastic and dabbing it on with a makeup sponge. My photo doesn't do it justice. It was very striking.

Oh to have time to do your nails! Although when I sit for a few hours (my knee op is this fri eeek!) There are many other things I'd like to be doing. My list is way too long!


Friday, 10 August 2012

Paper tole card

Pat took on the challenge of making a card to say farewell to the minister of her church who is moving elsewhere. A farewell card for a male. Well she did a great job in choosing a design. 
The card is quite large (which you can't tell here) and she has pages of signatures and messages which she will insert. The birds are looking wistfully into their future...

Nice card Pat. I hope he doesn't secretly check out my blog to spoil the surprise!

Thursday, 9 August 2012

A finished Quilt!

The benefits of being part of a Craft Group is that we often nag  encourage each other to finish a project and that is a good thing!
Last Thursday Bronwyn passed this gorgeous quilt to me to show during Show 'n Tell time. She hadn't shown Karin yet that it was finished. 
Bronwyn is a full time Carer for her mother at home. She bought the kit for her Mum and gave it to her for her birthday 3 years ago. Her mother loved the colours and gave it back to Bronwyn to actually make. For the last 3 years her good friend Karin has been pesting  encouraging her to finish it so her Mum can enjoy it. So the big reveal was on thursday and there was a real look of surprise on Karin's face. See... all that persistence paid off. What a pretty quilt for Bronwyn's Mum to enjoy. 

On the back she used a variegated thread to free form machine quilt, using the flowers as a guide. So it looks pretty on the underside as well.
(I never knew how to spell 'variegated' until now!)

Good on you Bronwyn (and encourager, Karin)
We always celebrate a finished quilt!!!

(How's your unfinished quilts going Karin!?)

Monday, 6 August 2012

Party favours for all ages.

I had so much fun making these goodies to give to all the guests at my party.
I wanted to hand make something which showed how much I appreciated everyone coming to help celebrate. I made a wrapped, super sized freckle chocolate for everyone!

Step one: melt a packet of "Choc Melts" according to the packet's directions. I figured out that adding just a tablespoon of melted copha in with the chocolate helped to form smoother shapes.

Step two: spoon some chocolate into patty cases in a muffin tray. Make them about 3 mm thick. 
Thin and even is best.
Step 3: pour heaps of 100's and 1000's into each case. When they are completely cooled (the fridge helps), shake the loose 100's and 1000's off over a bowl. They can be used again.

Step 4: Now cut little pieces of plastic wrap and wrap each freckle individually. Maybe just taste test one to make sure it is OK.  ;)

Step 5: Make and print on your computer some circles with a message on it.
I fitted 3 per page. Cut them out roughly. Find some paper for the backing. I used a light blue paper.

Step 6: This can be tricky but if the freckle is not too think, you will get it. Following the outside of the circle, zig zag around the edge with the freckle chocolate between the 2 pieces of paper like this...

Coming to the end of the circle can be tricky so really go slow and keep adjusting the paper and freckle with your hands.

Ta da!

Step 7: With scalloped shaped scissors, cut around the edge of the circle.

It was fun giving them to everyone. There are 2 types of people in the world and both are great. Those who receive something like this and take it home and find the right moment and open it. Then there are those who are curious to know what is inside so they immediately rip it open and then eat the freckle on the spot. I love it how we are all different.
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