Monday, 11 March 2019

Rainy days and Mondays.....

Blog post titles can be such a challenge at times but today it is a Monday (and a public holiday for a local horse race!), but sadly we don't have the 'rainy days'! We have had above average temperatures and below average rainfall this past Summer....in fact Adelaide only received 6.6mm of rain for the entire month of February - almost 70% below the average so we desperately need it! And I am sure we can all relate to the rainy day lyrics from Karen Carpenter too.......
Karen was only 32 years old when she died and I remember that tragedy so well. So while we wait for rain our lives go on.....with a touch of William Morris thrown in! Today I received an email telling me about this amazing house that is about to be opened to the public for the first time in the UK (thanks Darylin).  David Parr House in Cambridge had a secret hidden inside it for years and the story of David Parr is fascinating. He purchased the house in 1886 - just 10 years before William Morris died. David worked as a decorator of homes for the Arts and Crafts decorator Frederick Leach who also worked with William Morris on occasions. For over 40 years David Parr decorated his own modest home all by hand sometimes by candle light including an inscription that my late mother used to tell me regularly...'If you do anything do it well'. .... I might have to work out a way of visiting when we are in the UK next year...........












While speaking of 'Arts and Crafts' I thought I would share some recent work I've completed this past week most of it with a touch of Morris for my monthly market......


 And a new diversion from the cotton rope bowls to making bags so I might make a few more of these before next market day. I recycled a faux leather bag purchased from an op shop by disassembling it and then cutting it into strips to make the handles as it is not cost effective to buy new ones........and some Morris willow bough patterned fabric for the trim.......


 and I did complete a couple of bright charity quilts ready for a friend to quilt...... 
I've also recently enrolled in a dressmaking class using these wonderful designs - Tessuti Patterns. The course runs over 6 weeks and I hope to learn some tricks of the trade with these two garments first on my list.......
 So not a lot to chat about today but thought two weeks would pass me by before I'd touched base again! So I will conclude with some lovely images of little Wade who is almost walking but still gets around and is already becoming obsessed with the internet!!.....


 and little Maisie who has just passed her latest hearing test with flying colours (thanks to her Mum for the photos.....I just love her trying to get the embedded coins from the city pavement!!)......




 and finally from my desktop calendar......I love these words from the Dalai...so very true and how wonderful the world would be if only we respected each other's personal views......

Friday, 1 March 2019

Finding a way

A friend asked me some time back why I blog and it wasn't until some time later that I realised why! I've been blogging for 11 years this year and initially it was suggested to me by a student in one of my quilting classes as I was lamenting about the cost of having a website........I didn't even know what a blog was back then! It now makes sense as it has become a source of 'finding a way' of reaching out to others and it has also become a great journal where I can look back. Sometimes it has become a bit personal but best of all I've been able to reach out to others to let them know where I might be teaching and better still where I might be travelling! I am sure the Whitecroft Tours in the UK would never have happened if it wasn't for this blog! One of the bonuses of blogging is being able to turn some of it into books, especially for the special places we have visited that are now captured forever...mind you the price of the books has increased greatly so I am not sure if I will do more again in the future.....little did I know 11 years ago I would be 'finding a way' of writing a travel journal......
I giggled when I saw the centre book that I did of our 2016 UK William Morris Tour where it says "Final" as we are now returning next year!.........
Life is full of moments of 'finding a way' from how to bake a cake to understanding the meaning of life. We have had the saddest of weeks this past week with a loved one and no matter how much I have searched to 'find a way' to fix it I've found no resolution. I have cried at the drop of a hat and had sleepless nights and sadly there are still no instructions on some aspects of living. So this morning I was up with the sparrows and started sweeping the leaves outside...such a meditative task and a great way of 'finding a way' to think of other things. It reminded me of the number of people we saw in other countries on one overseas trip in 2010. I captured someone sweeping in Tallinn and another man proudly raking the ground in St Petersburg as we all traipsed through his perfection.......

I do 'find a way' of escaping through quilting and this past week I have finished three quilts for a dear friend who turned 90! All the appliqué needed to be completed on one quilt and all three needed quilting and it was all done in time for her birthday lunch and now she can give them to her family as she wanted (I did have a special friend spend one afternoon hand stitching the binding with me as I thought I would run out of time.....that was most definitely 'finding a way' to finish and most enjoyable too).......... 
I didn't get the birthday lady's permission to put her photo on here but you can just see her "thumbs up" with the approval below!........
It is a busy time of year in Adelaide with the Adelaide Fringe and the Adelaide Festival. The Fringe is now second in size to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and Wikipedia confirmed that for me too! With 5000 artists and over 1100 events just with the Fringe and 70 events, 17 Australian Premieres and 10 World Premieres during the Festival it is all very exciting! One day we strolled through one of the outdoor Fringe venues but it is closed during the day but still nice to see just a little.........



These electric scooters must be a great way of getting about.......
While I was in the city on another occasion I was 'finding my way' to the Art Gallery and I was pleased to see some more Morris textiles and embroideries on display............




 I found myself passing another icon of Adelaide - a state of the art Medical Research Institute where 700 researchers are 'finding a way' to cure many diseases .......


Recently I received an email from a quilter in the UK who was trying to 'find a way' of getting the pattern sheets for my second book More William Morris in Appliqué which is sadly now out of print. She had received a second hand copy as a gift but all the pattern pages had been removed. So I removed them all from my copy for her (as if I need them!!), so they have now 'found their way' to the UK. And this is what arrived in a box to say thankyou......some beautiful carnations and gypsophila that has lasted almost a week.........
This week we've been 'finding a way' of escaping the current heat wave with 40C forecast for today and tomorrow.......we are hoping that Autumn is just around the corner and we especially need some rain! But the sunsets are always welcome  for a stroll in the evenings. I trust that you are 'finding a way' to enjoy life.........