Friday, 20 September 2013

It's Been Awhile

So much has happened since I last put up a post that I don't really know where to start. Our annual pilgrimage to Marble Bar, going back to full time work, moving house, all getting the flu, and as much crafting as I could fit in between times. On top of that we have had 4 very significant family birthdays (40, 50, 60 & 18yrs) that have needed celebrating. It's been busy, busy, busy.

We were very lucky to have had rain at Marble Bar before we arrived so there was water in the Coongan River again this year. Last year it was the driest we have seen it (in 20 years) and it was quite sad. This year we were again able to visit and enjoy 'Paradise Valley' (discovered and so-named by our kids several years ago) and take the kayak out on the river, plus the birdlife was plentiful again. Here are a few pics...

Marble Bar Pool - Looking down the Coongan River
Babies, big kids and dogs alike enjoyed paddling in the river 
'Hillview' at sunrise
The Shaw River crossing - water was flowing over the road
I gave Fergus to my little sister and she loved him. He now takes pride of place on her bookshelf. Occasionally he moves to the top of the bookshelf to stay out of reach of little hands that just want to hold and cuddle him.

I have been home with the flu for the last week but, even though I have felt absolutely terrible, this has had some unexpected side benefits. In our new house I have my own little sewing space where I can set up and leave my sewing machine all the time. Yay! As a result, I have been able to rest up while doing some small sewing projects when I have felt up to it. I have been able to finish 2 more blocks for the WAQA Community Quilts program and I'm very happy with the results.

                  Scrappy Trip Around the World block 
Wonky Pound Sign block

These were quite fun to make but the first one was a bit challenging while feeling woolly headed. The Community Quilts program donates quilts to organisations for people who could use a little comfort (eg Princess Margaret Hospital, women's refuge, Cancer support organisations). People donate fabric and finished or unfinished quilt tops they no longer want. Members then take these and turn them into completed quilt tops and return them. Some very generous quilters then donate their time to quilt the finished product.

This year they introduced a 'block of the month' program. Each month they will choose a new block, pre-cut a selection of fabrics and write out instructions. Demonstrations of how to make the blocks are held at the WA Quilter's Association (WAQA) monthly sewing days/nights and members can choose to take a pack and make up the block, returning it the following month. The blocks are then combined into 1 or more quilts for donation. This is a great option for someone like me who does not have time to make a whole quilt for the program, particularly given the number of personal projects I have on the go!

It is also a fantastic way to learn how to make a variety of quilt blocks and practice/improve my piecing skills. I was impressed with the Scrappy Trip Around the World block. In the month prior to demonstrating this block the Community Quilts team asked members to donate their ugliest fat quarters. These were then cut up, mixed up and distributed for this block. The results are amazing and quite beautiful. I'm looking forward to seeing the final quilt/s. You can see some of the previous results on the WAQA website here.

Ok, time to go and finish off my project for today - Miss A's 18th birthday cake. She turned 18 on Wednesday and the party is tomorrow night. The cake is going to look fantastic - I'll post a pic when I can. Then I might lay my head down for a bit to clear away some of the wool!

Happy stitching,
Tracy xxx


Michelle Ridgway said...

Lovely to read your post and see your beautiful photos.... Gorgeous! I hope you are soon on the mend. Welcome back :-)

Maria said...

Thanks for sharing the photos of your hols in Marble Bar..
Fergus looks great sitting on the book shelf.
Nice blocks for your charity quilts..
Get better soon.

Outback Craftaholic said...

Thanks Michelle. Thanks also for the link to Wendy's FNSI. It motivated me to finish off my owl cushion tonight. Have a great weekend!

Outback Craftaholic said...

Thanks Maria, I'm working on it. Hopefully I'll get a bit of down time soon to go blog hopping and check out what you've been up to. Cheers, Tracy.

Simone Harding said...

Love the pics of Marble Bar. Looks like a great place to holiday. Hope you recover soon from the flu. Very nice blocks.