Monthly Archives: December 2013

goal achieved -phew!


with 3 hours to go i have achieved my goal of having the bottom half of the neighbourhood finished!.

as you’ll see, i havent changed the spelling of the american version of neighbourhood – i didnt trust my ability to add the letter and have the final result look balanced and good, so i left it. i’m cool with it as i know it was designed by someone who spells the word that way. i did think this evening i should have contacted the designer as i follow her facebook page, and ask is she has an UK english version of the bottom line. by then it was too late for me however!.

proof – taken under lights this evening!



so now its on to the top line and surrounding border. one house, 2 women, 2 animals and 2 plants i think.

so here ends the 2013 posts, a year where i have relocated yet again, this time back to the city of my birth. let the root planting begin!.

Happy New Year to my followers and readers!.


Project Life Title page


last night i sat and had a play with paper bits and came up with a title page for PL which i’m starting later this week!. this is how it looks for now, but it may change by the time i get the page protectors!. i dont have alot of stuff available to use at present, just what i brought in the UK in the 6mths between sending my belongings home and me heading back. so thats 6×6 pads, stamps, washi tape, a few word embellies, enamel dots and some wood veneer embellies. that lot will have to do until i am able to unpack properly.


it comprises 3 ready made cards, 2 patterned papers cut to size, 2 home made filler cards and a map of inner city Christchurch.

below is my craft space for now!. some of you may recognise the table – its the Lakeland fold away table a few of use brought around the time Scrapmates went to Canterbury ( UK ) for the weekend. it had to come back with me as its so useful and folds away easily!.



i am planning on doing a monthly spread for project life so i may not have much to share until Feb!. there is alot on in Jan so who knows, i might do a fortnightly spread, i’ll see how it goes.

i plan to record the days events in a diary, indicating where i’ve taken photos, so i can remember everything come time to make the spread. we’ll see how long it lasts!.

continued progress on the neighbourhood.


this year was a quiet Christmas so it gave me lots of stitching time – when i wasn’t raiding the library!.

i have got all of the bottom row completed now and should be on track to achieve my goal of finishing the bottom portion of the project by the end of the year!. All that’s left is the leaves and flowers on the vine border and the wording. i’ve decided not to try and change the spelling of the word neighbourhood. its part and parcel of buying an American designed chart.


in other news, i have unwrapped my sideboard and brought it into the house. for now its in a corner of my parents living room.


meanwhile, the rest of the things i sent from the UK is still packed in the garage. i say one of my goals is to have all my belongings under one roof. it is now, so i’ll amend my goal to have everything i own unpacked under one roof!!.



i hope to have a project life post in the next couple of days. the title page is slowing coming together!.

i’m loving the local library!. i go to a suburban branch and its got loads of books that appeal to me. its so much better than the borough branches i had in the UK. the stock here is up to date and there is a good variety. i’ve been going every few days and have spent valuable stitching time reading or looking at pretty pictures!.

i hope the festive season is being good to everyone and Santa brought you something you wanted!.

stitchy update


not a lot of stitching can be down when the ‘leg warmer’ is in situ!!


I’m making good progress on the neighbourhood. i should be able to get this bottom portion completed by the end of the year. i have 2 trees and the wording to do as well as the leaves on the boarder. P1100947

let me take this opportunity to wish my readers a happy Holiday season.

end of year Slow Living Essentials round up.


i was looking at my blog list of interesting reading this morning (on my old blog!) and noticed that Slow Living Essentials blog had done a post on what she’d been up to these last couple of months. i was thinking i look forward to being able to join in again and started to think about what’s going on now. that’s when i realised i could actually join in as a few things i’ve been doing fit into these categories!.

so here goes, my end of year, 3 weeks back in NZ SLE essentials update!.

NOURISH: Make and bake as much as possible from scratch. Ditch overpackaged, overprocessed convenience foods and opt for ‘real’ food instead. Share favourite links/recipes/tips from the month here.

=  this category is the easiest to talk about. Both my mother and i are cook from scratch people, so all meals are made by us, and i have begun baking for Christmas. cheese scones and butter tarts…….yum!

PREPARE: Stockpile and preserve. Freeze extra meals or excess garden/market produce. Bottle/can, dehydrate or pickle foods to enjoy when they are not in season. Aim to reduce dependancy on store bought items especially those known to contain BPA and other suspect additives. Stocking up on dry goods when prices are low counts too.

= Not alot in this category yet.

REDUCE: Cut down on household waste by re-using, re-purposing and repairing. A ladder into a strawberry planter? A sheet into a dress? Share ideas and project links here, allowing others to be inspired.
= i have starting going round garage sales looking for things to re-purpose. I brought a rattan basket that i am using to hold craft supplies.


GREEN: up our lives. Start (or continue!) using homemade cleaners, body products and basic herbal remedies. The options are endless, the savings huge and the health benefits enormous.

= nothing yet, but being as my toothpaste is just about finished, i am going to look for homemade recipes and give that a go.

GROW: plant/harvest. What’s growing this month? What’s being eaten from the garden? Herbs in a pot, sprouts on a windowsill or and entire fruit/vegetable garden -opt for what fits space and time constraints. Don’t have a backyard? Ask a friendly neighbour or relative for a small patch of theirs in return for some home grown produce, they may surprise you!

= the garden is in full swing – strawberries have been planted, restocks of lettuce, leeks and onions have gone in, cauliflower my father started is about to start providing big enough heads to eat!.  I also brought a blueberry at the market at the weekend which has about 6 berries on it. There isn’t alot of space here but there is plenty going on.

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CREATE: to fill a need or feed the soul. Create for ourselves or for others. Create something as simple as a handmade gift tag or something as extravagant as a fine knit shawl. Share project details and any new skills learnt here.

= this is mainly personal creating. I am starting Project Life from Jan next year, so have begun to make things now all my stuff has arrived from the UK. Since my last SLE post, i’ve also taken cross stitch back up and am spending time stitching most days, especially when there’s cricket on the telly!.

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DISCOVER: Feed the mind by reading texts relevant to current interests. Trawl libraries, second hand shops or local book shops to find titles that fill the need. Share titles/authors of what is being read this month.

= mostly discovering what’s changing in Christchurch, where things are now etc. I’m also reading vege gardening books as i’m used to the UK growing seasons, so its kinda weird planting things now!.

ENHANCE: community: Possibilities include supporting local growers & producers, help out at a local school/kindergarten, barter or foodswap, joining a playgroup or forming a walking or craft group. Car pooling where possible and biking/walking instead of driving. Even start up a blog if you haven’t already – online communities count too! Or maybe just help out someone trying to cross the street! The rewards for your time are often returned tenfold.

= i guess the only thing i can put in here for now is that i am driving my mother about as she isn’t driving anymore and has been stuck at home alot prior to my returning.

ENJOY: Life! Embrace moments with friends and family. Marking the seasons, celebrations and new arrivals are all cause for enjoyment. Share a moment to be remembered from the month here.

= cat cuddles!. Need i say more!.

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i hope as time goes on i can get back into the swing of a more simpler way of life, but being as i live with my parents for now, i may not have as much free reign as i’d like!!.

i’m sharing with other like minded folk linking up at Slow Living Essentials.slo

first Project Life make.


tonight i finally had a little play with some of my new ‘toys’ for my impending launch into the world of Project Life memory keeping.

i made one 3×4 card!!!. this is pretty good for me being as i haven’t done any paper crafting this year!.



made on some white paper rather than cardstock. this is because the 3×4 punch by We Are Memory Keepers doesnt seem to want to cut thru cardstock. no problems with paper, but cardstock = nope!. i’m going to try sharpening it with tin foil and see if that helps any, otherwise it might have just become a huge waste of money!.

so, for this card i used some Ali Edwards Technique Tuesday stamps, washi tape, a wood veneer arrow and a red pen to provide a border.

overall i’m pretty pleased with this and will use it on my title page, that i beginning to think about now, especially as Jan is only a few weeks away!.

hopefully i can solve the punch issue and get my hands on a paper trimmer – either mine from my boxes, or buy a new one and then i can get cutting and making!.


3 of 4 houses stitched!!




thanks to a great test match between NZ and West Indies, i’ve been able to crack on with this house on the bottom row. its now complete, as is the grass area underneath it. all that remains is 2 trees, 2 fences, 2 flowers, the wording under the grass and the leaves and flowers on the border. may still be able to make the end of year deadline!.

in other news, all my stuff from the UK is now here and stacked in my parents garage!. i’ve opened 3 boxes and got out my pillows, the PL stuff and my cross stitch supplies. i’ve got 5 kitted up x stitch projects – 4 of the Christmas themed!.

i’ve been unsure about having 2 projects on the go, but i managed ok with the neighbourhood and patience when i was working a few months back. i will definitely wait til i have completed the rest of the bottom area, so its only the top row left.

i’ve also realised the spelling on this chart is American, and neighbourhood is spelt ‘wrong’!. there is a short saying under the grass using the word neighbourhood. i’m not sure i’f  i’ve got the skills to try and rearrange to add the ‘u’, or just accept it as part of using an American pattern!.