30 December 2011


You won't get one of those blog posts about what I've achieved (or not achieved) in 2011 from me. I prefer to look forward rather than back and listing what happened in the past year is of no use to my way of living.

Instead, I'd rather continue to enjoy life and savour the simple things. I'm easily pleased - by friends and family, by cheerful things (such as this shiny new set of drawers for my sewing room), by stories that take me into other people's lives, by pottering in my garden, by sewing by hand and by going to see the Swans.

If there's one thing that I'm trying to apply more, it's to be gentle on myself. (For someone who likes to control events as much as I do, that's a challenge!) At least I can try. Onwards!

28 December 2011

Big spender

While I don't get excited about the post-Christmas sales that all the shops around here seem to have, I do love a good bargain. This morning's purchase is this cute box, perfect for transporting my current hand sewing project.

The cost? $2 - bargain!

20 December 2011

Playing with stencils

I don't want you to think I'm just lounging around, not doing anything - although if you look to this blog regularly you may think that very thing! I find that I hang out more frequently on Facebook now and I'd love it if you would join me over there as well. Just click on the Facebook link on the left of this page and you'll be spirited over there. 

In the meantime, click here to see what Lisa and I got up to yesterday. Such fun trying out new stencils!

10 December 2011

Reflections on: technology

You may consider that volcanoes and communications technology have nothing in common, but events last year made me think otherwise. The control we have over our world is so tenuous and so fragile that it is only hanging on by a thread.

When the volcano in Iceland spewed out lava and ash last year, it was initially regarded as a wonder of nature. Vulcanologists and tourists were enthralled to see the power that forced so much molten matter from the centre of the earth to the surface. The results were admired and examined and many heads were shaken in amazement at the natural forces that we rarely see.

Soon, with the help of another natural occurrence - the wind - huge plumes of ash began to drift across Europe. Plane flights were cancelled for days and thousands of people were inconvenienced and disappointed. After a few days of this, people started to get frustrated and even angry that nature had interfered with the way they planned to live their lives.

Infrastructure that we take for granted is so fragile. My experience of this occurred when I upgraded my home internet access plan. As soon as the changeover happened, my internet connection no longer worked. After four phone calls and one visit from a technician, it was restored four days later. The problem? One tiny frayed wire at the telephone exchange.

During those four days without cyberspace communication, I felt as if my connection to the outside world had been lost. I craved my internet links and drove to libraries just to get my fix by using their free wifi. It was quite a ridiculous reaction, really, but was a classic withdrawal symptom from an addict.

After the third day, what I noticed most was that I had so much extra time to do the things I over which I did have power. Without so much trivia from blogs and mailing lists cluttering up my mind, I had time to think. I thought about future projects and jotted down some ideas. I sewed madly for long hours, loving the fact that I had total control over the stitches I made. This was the thread that kept me in touch with the real world – my stitch making.

We all share the illusion that the world’s perfectly assembled infrastructure is solid and reliable. It’s not. If a frayed wire can dislocate the rhythm of my life and a natural event like a volcano can disrupt so many other people, what other vulnerabilities are there? I’ve realised that the thread that holds my life together is my stitching. Even if I could never buy another piece of fabric, I would still sew and create. Somehow, that’s extremely reassuring to me in this uncertain world.

04 December 2011

Saturday sewing at the pub

Simple pleasures: friends, food and silly antics. Check out what we got up to at our Scquilters day at the pub yesterday.Thanks for maintaining our blog, Pennie!