Wednesday, 26 October 2005

Paisley's Quilt History IV

I haven't blogged any photos for a while so here's another instalment of quilt history. This quilt was made in October/November of 2001 to mark Aunty Sheila's 90th Birthday. It was a last minute decision at Mum's instigation so it's probably the quickest quilt I've ever made. I was "between jobs" at the time (having just got back from a year in London and then having the whole world go crazy - no-one was hiring librarians) so I patched this quilt, with Mum as my apprentice and then madly tried to quilt as much of it as I could before I flitted off back-packing around New Zealand (I'd figured that no-one was hiring before Christmas so why keep bashing my head against doors - plus S had just finished a contract in Wellington and was in need of some R&R). Fabrics were mostly scraps sourced from my stash. Mum loves the nature of scrap quilts where you can recognise pieces of the past (like a school dress or an old apron). The centre pieces of the snowball blocks was purchased for the project. I didn't quite get all the quilting done, so it was left in Mum's hands with strict instruction about binding techniques.
Aunty Sheila died last year, at the ripe old age of 92, so the quilt has gone back to live with my parents. This photo was taken - along with a lot of the quilt pics from my Flickr stream - at my 30th birthday party - a quilt exhibition which S organised (unbeknownst to me) in cahoots with my Mum, Y and C - everyone managed to keep the secret which was a huge achievement. This is my public thank-you.

Tuesday, 25 October 2005

Quilting update #564

Mad quilting-fest is paying off. Averaging 3 hours of quilting a day over the past couple of weeks has got me to the stage of just the border left to quilt on S&T's gargantuan monster of bloody-king-sized-bed-wedding-quilt. T did a translation for me so that I could quilt their names and the wedding date (in Sinhalese) into the border. I've done them in English too so it's a bi-lingual quilt. I've quilted about a quarter of the border so the end is definitely in sight. Long weekend away is coming up though which will be spent with S&T and Y&T(plus offspring) so that project will have to go on hold for the four days (yes - super long weekend - woo hoo!). Perhaps I'll take C&D's quilt along and work on that. (Poor old C's work has sent her out to Woop Woop for six weeks when she really needs to be at home finishing her Masters and putting the finishing touches to wedding plans. Hello C if you're reading - digging lots of holes? scaring bungarras?)

Monday, 17 October 2005

Another food-blogging detour - Rice Bubbles and Copha ....

To further the comment conversation from my previous post - I thought the thread was getting a little long :-)

Rice Bubble Recipes: (they still go snap, crackle & pop)

Instead of Rice Krispie Treats, we make Chocolate Crackles with our Rice Bubbles using a very old-fashioned ingredient - Copha (a solified coconut oil) - which apparently isn't available anywhere outside Australia, and even here, it seems to exist for the sole purpose of making chocolate crackles. I can't think of any other recipes which call for this, except maybe White Christmas (another Rice Bubble based sweet treat). You could substitute melted chocolate instead of copha plus icing sugar plus cocoa powder and the effect would be the same - only a bit richer I guess. My suspicion is that the recipe originated from a time when chocolate wasn't readily available and affordable - hence the cheaper chocolate-approximating-substitute alternative.

CHOCOLATE CRACKLES

8 oz copha
8 oz icing sugar
3 1/2 Tbsp cocoa powder
5 cups Rice Bubbles
1/2 cup sultanas (optional)

(1) Combine sifted icing sugar, cocoa, rice bubbles, and optional sultanas.
(2) Melt copha and add to ingredients and mix thoroughly.
(3) Spoon into paper cups and allow to set.

Sultana Bran advertising:
It tends to be marketed at families as a "healthy" cereal that kids will eat. Slogans have included: "Don't mention it's healthy and they'll eat it by the box-full". Currently they're running TV ads with kids plus mum dancing around the kitchen singing "Sultanas from the grapevine; make Sultana Bran taste so fine; sweet, juicy sultanas from the grapevine" (think Marvin Gaye or Creedence for the tune!).

Wednesday, 12 October 2005

My second ever meme

This one actually tells you a little bit more about me....

10 years ago: Sitting final exams / finishing final essays for my BA (majors in German and History). Sharing a house with C & E.

5 years ago: S and I had just arrived in London for a working holiday. I spent a year there working as an "evening researcher" for an investment bank.

1 year ago: Same job as now. Planning a trip to New Zealand with my parents for Christmas (my step-dad's brother lives in the Sth Island). Despairing over the re-election (again) of John W Howard.

Yesterday: Had breakfast; Did some quilting; Went to work; Came home; Went to the gym (got a trial membership at Fitness First) and did a Body Pump class - the instructor was good although she'd gone a bit overboard on the peroxide and the fake tan; Watched The Bill and Foreign Correspondent whilst doing more quilting; Went to bed.

5 Snacks I Enjoy: sultanas; Arnotts Monte Carlo biscuits; vegemite on toast; carrot cake; custard

5 Songs I Know All The Words To: "Bizarre Love Triangle" (New Order), "Sexuality" (Billy Bragg), "Cupid's got a brand new gun" (Michael Penn), "Eleanor Rigby" (The Beatles), "Message to my girl" (Split Enz)

5 Things I'd Do With 100 Million Dollars:- With 1 million I would pay off my mortgage, buy my parents a new house and car, buy a Toyota Prius, go on a luxury holiday. The other 99 million can go to charity. I'd only worry about how to spend any more than a million.

5 Places I'd Run Away To: Wanaka (New Zealand), Tuscany (a la Liv Tyler in Stealing Beauty), Pearl Bay (fictional location of Seachange), Barcelona, Halong Bay (Vietnam - to live in a floating fishing village).

5 Things I'd Never Wear:- stiletto heels, eyebrow ring, fishnet stockings, make-up every day, mini-skirt.

5 Favorite T.V. Shows:- Inspector Rex, Alias, The Amazing Race, Spicks & Specks, The Forsyte Saga.

5 Biggest Joys:- finishing a quilt, long after-dinner discussions with family or friends, surveying my living room after it has been cleaned and tidied, knitting on the train, completing a full cryptic crossword with no help (a rare occurence).

What is Cool In My Place... the fridge. Not being cool is my cool.

Tagged - Seabreeze

My first meme

I was tagged for this meme by Genevieve.

The Rules:
1. Go into your archive.
2. Find your 23rd post.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the sentence in your blog along with these instructions.
5. Tag five other people to do the same.

19 August 2005

"I am busting to blog some pics of this, but I know S reads these pages from time to time, so pics will have to wait until after the wedding (24 December). "


I choose to tag only 1 - Seabreeze - S - you're it!

Move is complete... Quilts are not...

I'm pretty well settled in now with all my boxes unpacked and stuff arranged in a relatively orderly fashion. I'm particularly satisfied with the layout of my craft room/spare bedroom which gets some nice morning sun. Must take some photos to show when I get time.

I've slowly come to the realisation that it is a little over two months to S & T's wedding (24 Dec - egads!) and that I really need to get a wriggle on with the quilting. Especially since I still have about half the quilting to do on C & D's quilt (14 Jan!) and quilting still to commence on M & A's (middle of Feb - can't remember the date). So I'm getting up early in the morning at the moment and trying to do an hour of quilting before going to work as well as working on them in the evening. I'm making progress but it's a bit hard to gauge whether I'm really going to get them finished. I operating on the blind faith assumption that if I keep on plugging away then somehow it will get done. The same belief got me through two university degrees so it can't be completely misguided.

Kyoto knitting is exclusively on the train at the moment. I've just started the second sleeve, then there's just the collar left to go. What a pity that I can't quilt in a practical fashion on the train. Still - it gives me knitting time or a chance to work the Sudoku and attempt the cryptic x-word. (My mum stayed with me for a week while I was moving - she's got into sudoku too - my step-dad thinks we're both insane).

Monday, 3 October 2005

Moving house...

Well I've finished cleaning the new house so it's now ready to move my furniture in - removalists are booked for Wednesday. I couldn't face pulling up the carpets and booking floor sanders and polishers as well as cleaning. I'll save that for a new project down the track. At the moment I just want to move in and get settled. There's no rush to do anything. I had the carpet steam cleaned this morning and the fellow said "don't let anyone tell you that's bad carpet - it's really high quality Axminster". In essence, he's correct. It is very high quality carpet and it's in pretty good condition. It's just a rather lairy floral print. Perhaps we won't notice it so much when all the furniture is in.