Central Plateau, North Island

Central Plateau, North Island
View from a friend's farm

Friday, 27 October 2017

Bargains in the quilty department

Yesterday was my day to drive, and choose where I went. First stop, cutter blades. Woohoo!!! 30% off, and a further discount for having what is called a “ Gold Card” for those of us in the older age group, if you are 65 or older it entitles you to discount at selected stores, in some towns free bus or train travel ( very handy in Rotorua and Wellington) and is one perk at our age.

Next stop a specialised quilting place, and at the front door a sign “ 30% off fabrics”. so when all I needed was  a light and a dark, one of each,  to start the “wayward Transparency QAL” a few others hopped in as well.

The benefit of a smart phone, taking a photo in B&W to see if the balance from light to dark was correct. It was.

The yellow is a colour I have very little of, likewise the deep purple, and the lime green with large flowers was so pretty.

Dark purple, a dark green, and a pale green were all more goodies.The new blade is ready to go.

And I have a new project for Hugh, as soon as he can manage in the workshop. Yvonne at   quilting Jet girl   has a wonderful tutorial for a ladder to display quilts or wall hangings. So detailed, and easy to follow. This is on my list for a finish by Christmas.

wayward transparency new fabrics.  #3wayward transparency new fabrics

Black and white to make sure they were all OK.wayward transparency new fabrics. B&W

Did you notice that I have 2 sets of light to dark fabric now? What does that say about the next project?

I have another one ( to be posted overseas)  that is slowly getting finished, it has been partly done for ages, then sprained muscles,Hugh’s shoulder injury all interrupted it. Next week, all going well, I will have the next part done and it  will be finished and in the bag!!

This was taken  on 25th  October 2014, at 7.03 a.m.  and reminded me that even in October, frost will still be a threat to the new tomato plants. This morning, we had just over 5Celsius, and just the slightest white tinge on some places out there.

October frosty morning, looking back from the front lawnQuotation of the day, author unknown

“ Expect the unexpected,

believe the unbelievable,

and achieve beyond your dreams”

Greetings from Jean.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Situations Vacant…Position has been filled!!! Thank you all so much.

Thank you all SO  much for caring words, good wishes and loving thoughts for Hugh and his cataract surgery.

It was a long day, a lot of waiting, but all is well.His eye is very bloodshot, last night the lids were still gummed together, after the anaesthetic gel was oozing out. Day theatre staff were very caring, reassuring, and seemed to be unflappable. cool, calm and collected.

The reason why Hugh is not allowed to drive for maybe 2 weeks, is , if he is outdoors and there is any wind flying , dust, debris or anything else might get into  his  eye, it needs to be protected,  so he has this plastic shield, but the plaster obscures eyesight.And it has to be worn at night so sheets, pillow case edges or anything else cannot damage the eye.

I am hoping his recovery is fast. Meantime I am the driver, and so far so good.  Thank you for all the offers to come,fill in, and help in any other way. Your are all troopers of the highest colour.

Meantime some pics of us in earlier years.

July 2008 at  the Central Plateau. A very cold way to celebrate my birthday!!!

Jean & Hugh at the Mountain July 2008

July 2005, another birthday photo.

Jean & Hugh

And in 1964, my Dad, me ,Hugh, my Mum and Annette. These were the days of hats, gloves stockings !!! ,  this was at a family wedding in Papakura.

All together at a family wedding, 1964 #2

And one of the Purakaunui Falls in Otago. Maybe in 2009.A very popular spot for all photographers. I remember one man from Europe clambering down the slippery rocks to be almost in the spray. I hope to be there again next February.Purakaunui Falls,Otago

Quotation of the day, from a Waterfall

“ Go with the flow,

and let the cares float away downstream”

Greetings from Jean

Monday, 23 October 2017

Spring Glory is still here

Some of the daffs are still flowering,tulip buds unfolding, Sparaxis, wisteria ( forgot to get a photo of the delicate mauve blossoms)blue forget-me-not everywhere, grass is growing, and the weeds think it is time to show us how they thrive!!!

this one started as the palest bulb, and turned into deep pink.

The pale pink tulip turned deeper

There are several this shade, but none as frilly.

Frilly as it likes

Tulips, forget-me-not and red Sparaxis in the lower right. The pale pink at the very back is the same one in the first photo.tulips, Blue forget-me-not and sparaxis.

There are 5 bulbs of these daffs, the others have faded, two are still so delicate and beautiful

Daffodils, the last to bloom

The English Elm has pale leaves and loaded with   flowers on every branch and twig.

elm tree  in October

These are the pale flowers, that dry to an almost transparent casing, and blow everywhere in even the slightest breeze.

Elm Tree Flowers

The Weeping Silver Pear tree is so delicate, and really pretty.

Weeping Silver Pear, 2017

I emptied the  rain gauge into the pond and Boris thought he might jump in after he heard the splash.

Boris, on the bridge over the pond

I am slowly healing, and remind myself to NEVER help lift a can of petrol ever again. Hugh’s shoulder is  back to normal, he has had the pre-op check up at Whanganui Hospital last Thursday.  and tomorrow, bright and early, has  cataract surgery. The first one 2 years ago went well, so I hope this will be the same. Same surgeon, back form the UK for a very busy catch up of 6 months appointments. The only drawback to this , is he cannot drive for about 3 weeks. I might just see if there is a “chauffeur” available.I will be open to all offers, overseas applicants can  also apply, food and board for free, air travel is your own expense!!! Please email for job specifications!!!!

Quotation of the day, author unknown

“ Flowers are silent friends

that give beauty unasked”

Greetings from Jean.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Sunshine, after so much Rain.

The flowers have blossomed, in spite of so much rain. Tulips,Bearded Iris, Dutch Iris, Cherry Blossom, and Gladiolus Nanus,. and more.

The are……….    !!!!!!!!     …….. Photos Galore!!!!Tulip #3Tulip #2Tulip #1Tulip #9Tulip #8Tulip #6 and pink bluebells

Tulip #8Tulip #4

Tulip #9

One side of the driveway, deeper pink and upright,  the paler blossoms below are on the other side, and are so beautiful and droop their branches so delicately.

Cherry Blossom 2017 #1Cherry Blossom 2017 #2Cherry Blossom 2017 #3Cherry Blossom 2017 #4Bearded Iris #1

Dutch Iris 2017

Violets, lupins, tulips and Dutch Iris.

Ixia and Gladiolus Nanus are two of my favourites, right after

the Tulips.

.Ixia, 2017Pink Ixia, my favourite

The Gladiolus Nanus were lost somewhere last year, this year in a tub, and saved. They are graceful and delicate.

Gladiolus Nanus 2017

Hugh and I continue to heal, he is a long way ahead of me, but we are  both so thankful for all the help we are receiving. The firewood is slowly getting cut and split, many thanks to friends.

I am so thankful for a safer place to live, wonderful friends, calmer weather, and my blog friends closer here in NZ  and far away. Amidst all the tragedy, hurricanes, snow storms, shootings, and the ongoing famine and war, we all must try to find beauty and peace, in the blue skies, the green grass, the flowers, and trees, whatever season we live in.    Autumn colours in the North, spring flowers down south.

The quilting machine is still languishing in the garage, our Fix-it  man ( aka super-duper sewing machine mechanic) is still in Tasmania after a new grandchild arrived. It will get attended too in time, meanwhile I have a Christmas block QAL, and Yvonne’s transparency quilt ,  (fabrics chosen, starting in some days to come ) to enjoy.

Quotation of the day, author unknown

“A Rainbow

     is a promise of sunshine after rain,

        of calm after storms,

             of joy after sadness,

                 of peace after pain,

                     of love after loss.”


Greetings from Jean.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Dithering and Dallying!!!

These days I try hard to set my mind to do something really worthwhile, but in reality end up in bed with a hottie!!!

I need to decide on the fabrics to use in the next project,

Wayward Transparency  with Yvonne

I chose three, and then after they were all measured and cut, took a photo in B&W with my phone. Oh No, not enough contrast between light, medium and dark.Too late to change, a good lesson to learn, take a B&W photo first.

1st choice in colour1st choice in B&W

So off to find what I have here, second choice, grey marbled, green and a  darker one with blues, greens and almost black.

grey,green and dark choiceB&W, grey green and dark choice

Maybe sort of OK, but it did not say “YES, pick me!!”

Next is pale mauve, green and again the darker one. and this seems to be all right. Good contrast, and mauve in the green, picks up the pale mauve  in the lightest fabric.

last choice B&Wlast choice in colour

However we have some time before the cutting begins, so I can play, set them out all over again and ponder some more.

Our weather is so changeable, warmer days, then rain, AGAIN, and some wind. Down south lambing is going well, one  brave ewe had  FOUR baby lambs. They were all fostered out to be bottle fed by another family, one was very tiny, I hope he made the grade and survived.  No huge late season snow falls this year so far, the farmers will be elated to avoid that sleet and snow  with freezing wind.

For years, Hugh has said if we see a logging truck going past,” I just would like one of those logs to fall off at our place”. Well, last week a local man  had  a whole truck load for sale, I sent a txt, he replied, and bingo, they arrived. The huge truck reversed up to this spot, and even after some dry days the huge wheels sunk into the grass, look carefully and you can see the indentation. This was late afternoon, and not the best light for photos.

Truck load of logs #1Logs #2logs #3

We think there are 50!!!!!So all Hugh’s dreams came true. No stumps to clean out, no branches to trim, no scruffy stuff to burn, just cut into rounds and split. Thanks Ross, you will be very popular everywhere you go.

Hugh’s shoulder fracture is healing perfectly, no separation or displacement, he is driving again. My muscle sprain is still very painful, slightly improving, how we take good health and ability to do everything we want to, for granted.

I am slightly better and each day hope  to be able to do a bit more, Roller cutting is out for now,  but fabric can be patted, laid out and arranged again and again.

Thank you all so much for your caring comments, enquiries, and emails. I so appreciate every one, and if I have not replied to you in  person,  pain medication and all else dims the mind!!! At least that is what I believe.

Quotation of the day, from Nelson Mandela

“ May your choices reflect your hopes ,

not your fears”

Greetings from Jean

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Home Again, Home again, Jiggity-Jig!!!!

I have borrowed those words from Jenn in Canada, as Jenn, you so often use these after a hospital visit, I thought they were very suitable for  our last few  weeks down here!!!

The weeks since my last post have been action packed, if you can interpret that to be “ Filled with Hospital visits, trips by ambulance, and more”.

Hugh’s shoulder is improving slowly, he can dress himself, almost drive, manage to sit on the ride on mower, and a little more. However through this, he had severe pain in his right knee,  not able to walk, so once more off in the green and gold chariot, aka Ambulance. Blood test, X-Ray, possible fracture NO, possible gout? Maybe, overnight stay and home the next day.

Front lawn area

Now, all mowers need petrol!!! The lawn needed mowing,  The 20 litre can  was filled at the garage, they lifted it into the wagon, and when we arrived home I had to help Hugh lift it onto the back tray on the quad bike!!! This is so he can take it to the other shed past the driveway. That was something we had done together dozens of times, but previously when his right arm was good!!! My ribs ached afterwards, the next day, so painful. The following Friday, my turn to get carried off on a stretcher,  then an  X-Ray, maybe a fractured rib, NO, maybe a chest wall muscle sprain? Not sure. Home with a whole heap of medication. Lots of explanations to the OT lady and the Social worker about how this was absolutely necessary. One of them suggested we leave the lawn until it was SO high, indicating with her hands at least 10 to 12 inches. Well, we would then make hay.I am guessing she has no idea at all about how large a 3 acre area is.

Then Sunday, the pain escalated into “ where is it on a scale of 1 to 10?” Off the scale, so back to hospital again. More pain meds, an overnight stay, and home to take life very slowly and carefully. The Dr said maybe 4 to 6 weeks for it to heal.

Through all of this, I keep thinking of Irma, my friend in Florida , how her barn cats are managing, and all those in Texas and other states nearby.Stay safe are the usual words, but they seem so insignificant right now.

Before this I had managed to finish Blocks #3 and #4 for the QAL. They are bright and so Christmassy!!!

Santa’s Belt,  there are so many lovely blocks, on the Facebook group page.  with belts, buckles, and a fat tummy as well.

Christmas Block #3

Then Christmas Decorations, again all the group members have made this in their own so special way. Each one a delight to see. The green is sparkly and glittery, as a Christmas tree would be.

Christmas Block #4

Meantime, before all this, I was in a quilt fabric shop,  looking, as we do, and found this panel of elephants.It just  hopped into my hands!!! Not the best photos, it is just too hard to  find a good place with plenty of light.

panel of elephants

Elephant #2My favourite Elephant

Then I found this on the net, and have seen it before.It, too, just landed in my patterns. Paper pieced, not my favourite way to do it, but I might try with freezer paper instead.

Elephant and I pattern photoElephant & I cropped

This will have to wait till all things are back to normal,  for now  I can look and dream.

Quotation of the day. author unknown

“ Always  fall asleep with a dream

and wake up with a purpose.”

Greetings from Jean.