Friday, January 19, 2018

Promises ....

Like most crafters and quilters I tend to get a little dazzled when I see new projects, fabrics and supplies

Last year I started a number of major projects yet again and didn't finish what I started.  It has become a pattern over the last 10 years or so ......

A pattern I aim to break this year.  My challenge to myself is to try to finish some of the major projects I have started.  Some are more than half way finished - I truly believe that I start out with good intentions but then a new design is released that I fall in love with and MUST make and it dazzles me .......  I lose focus and then the previous project is put aside whilst I start another .......

When I think about the money I have tied up in UFO's it truly makes me feel quite ill.  It is just plain stupid .......  So I aim to get some major finishes this year.

I must stay focused no matter how much something dazzles me.  I have promised myself that I will start NO MORE major projects until some have been finished.

I have purchased a 3 tier IKEA trolley which will sit beside my chair and I will work on these projects religiously until they are finished and are replaced with another .........  The plan is to have 1 Stitchery Project, 1 Applique Project and 1 EPP Project in the trolley to be worked on so that I can vary my work a little.

This project is "Round You Go" by Sue Daly and I have been purchasing it as a BOM (without fabric) from Patchworks Plus.  I had 6 months worth just sitting there.  Looking at me ........  Making me feel guilty for spending the money ......  I am committed for the whole 12 months so stopping it or selling it on were not options.  So as my recovery has been slow and has involved a lot of sitting I decided to just get into it.  The quilt has 48 of these 7" finished circles in it.  Some blocks are much easier than other but it involves a lot of stitching !

I have finished 21 of these circles so far with Month 7 already on it's way to me.  So just 7 blocks to finish and I can say that I am up to date.  Each circle still needs to be needle turned onto a 9" background but hopefully when I catch up I can put some time into doing that.

There will be no fabric purchases for me this year except for a little retail therapy when I attend the annual LGS retreat so I am committed to using stash only.  This means backgrounds fabrics, backing etc.

That in itself is a challenge. I have unsubscribed myself from all fabric retail stores so that I receive no tempting e-mails in my "inbox".  I have enough fabric to last for the rest of my days so I need to be tough on myself.

So today hubby is putting together my IKEA trolley and I will spend some time filling it with my 3 chosen projects and keep plugging away.

What about you - Are you working on UFO's this year too ?

Love and Hugs,

Fee xx

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

A Free Tutorial

Hello and Happy New Year to you.  As many of you would know I am joining my dear friend Jenny in bringing you another year of Gentle Domesticity.  It's never too early to begin making little items to go in your gift box and this simple little tissue cover is a perfect 5 minute project which will assist you in using up some of your scrap box in the process.  A Win Win !!

 It is just so simple.  I have put together a little photographic tutorial for you to download and store on your computer and print if you like.  I have so many tutorials that I want to share with you this year. 

 It's so exciting getting back to basics and saving as much money as possible.  And with that comes being organised.  A full gift box is such a blessing when birthdays, Just Because and Christmas gift giving happens.

 You will find it over HERE in my CRAFTSY store. 

Jenny launched her FREE A Year in the Garden Block of the Month yesterday on her blog.  It is a truly beautiful set of stitcheries.  I will show you what I have done with Block 1 in the coming week.


Fee xx

Friday, December 29, 2017

Feeling Overwhelmed

One of the things that has bugged me for a very long time is the amount of  junk and advertising e-mails I receive every single day.  It is so overwhelming to find 60 new messages every day and most of them I deem as "Junk"

My inboxes are clogged up with rubbish and I quite often miss important e-mails because of them.  So with my enforced rest time I decided to put it to good use and have steadily been blocking, marking as spam and unsubscribing from the 100's of companies that seem to have my details !

Let me tell you it is worth the effort !  My inbox is so much cleaner and I can now see and respond to e-mails that are in fact important. Like your blog comments.

I am not making New Year's resolutions for next year  but am changing the way I do things and part of that is to simplify my life and that includes my online life.  I want to be able to spend more time on the things I love and less time on things that do not matter like JUNK e-mails,  so take my advice and spend the time unsubscribing !  You will feel so much better.


Fee xxx

Thursday, December 28, 2017

6 Long Weeks

Christmas is over and done with and I am 2 weeks down the track from my leg surgery.  It turned out a lot more painful than I thought it would be and I under estimated just how little I was going to be able to do whilst I heal.  Having had the tibia broken, cut, moved and then reattached with screws into the correct position and a new knee cap has meant that I am not allowed to weight bear or bend the knee for 6 weeks and my day and nights have gone from the recliner to the bed.  The brace I wear with metal rods is very constricting but I am getting used to it. Talk about boring !  This is the view out into my outdoor area from my chair.  Although I never tire of gazing out there !

My little hospital style over the bed table goes from the chair to the bedroom and has proven to be invaluable.  I already use it so much already but with this latest hiccup it has been a life saver !

Hubby has been wonderful - He is on the other end of the vacuum cleaner around the corner. it's been a tough few weeks for all of us but him especially.  

So as I sit here I have plenty of time to think about things and have a firm plan in place for my crafting life in 2018.  I have lots of tutorial ideas and have even managed to make a start on a few of them ready to be uploaded in the coming weeks.  

Now I must prepare for the marathon effort of having a shower as I am off to the surgeon this afternoon for a post operative appointment.  Until next time.


Fee xx

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

From Trash to Treasure

You know what they say.  One man's trash is another's treasure.  Months ago I visited a local thrift shop and stopped by a bin of books for 20c each.  Most were modern style soft cover novels but I managed to uncover these 3 aged beauties.

And how could I let this one stay there with a title like this ??  It was destiny.

And look at the beauty of this well loved one ?  Some people may see an old worn out book.  I see a much loved book whose owner had probably left this life and their possessions have been dispersed and this book was seen as junk and donated just waiting for someone like me to come along and love it again.  And all for 20 cents !

I always knew what I was going to do with these books but they have been moved from pile to pile over the last few months until a few nights ago I decided that it was time that they met their final resting place, on display in my home to be admired and loved again.

I lovingly wrapped them in aged lace and carefully glued it down making sure that I did not damage the beautiful cover of the book.

Then I laid some hand dyed lace over the top and found one of my many cardboard boxes just waiting to be recycled.

I cut a tag from the cardboard and 2 identical ones from scrap booking paper and glued them all together to make a lovely sturdy tag.

I used my favourite punch to make a tag top and trimmed the edges to neaten

I chose some embellishments and used some distress ink to age the card, ribbon, flower and tassel

I put it all together with some aged cheesecloth and a gorgeous rabbit charm

I then tied up the books with some silk ribbon to finish it off and attached the tag

I just love the end result

I love nothing more than to decorate my home but I must do it as frugally as possible

The total amount spent on this gorgeous home decor item was 60c - Everything else was either recycled or came from my craft studio

And I love it.  It is now on display in my front foyer and is once again very much loved.


Fee xxx

Friday, December 1, 2017

Tree Day

Can you believe it's the 1st December ?  Gee's that snuck up !  1st December in our home means Tree Day.  We only have a very small tree (a $5 K-Mart tree in fact) in our home these days.  Our children have all grown and it's really for the grandchildren when they come to visit.  They like to see that Nanna and Pa are in the Christmas spirit and of course to take a little peek at the gift wrapped up with their name on it.

December always makes me think about the coming year and what changes I would like to try and make to further enrich our lives.  Since having to stop working a few years ago our income is now 1/6th of what it used to be BUT we are richer .........  We value different things and just "make do" but there is so much more we can do to save even more money and better enrich our lives.

My darling friend Jenny and I have a telephone catch up every few weeks and part of yesterday's conversation was on this very subject.  We have both pledged to just "make do" in 2018 whenever we can and to grow our gentle domestic hearts.

Even though we live on less I do still buy craft supplies when I can afford to but one of the changes I would really like to make is to try and make do with what I have or to only buy craft supplies if I have been able to sell some of what I already have so that I can fund my addiction from my addiction.  The truth of the matter is that I have enough craft supplies to last many life times and the hoarder in me thinks I still require more !!  I've had an idea to share on this subject and will share more really soon.

Both Jenny and I are very much home makers - we speak from the same heart.

Our homes are already centered around baking from scratch, growing our own food, making gifts from scratch etc so in 2018 I will be sharing much of what we do in our home to live on a very small income and share some easy "craft" tutorials on making gifts, home making ideas and the like.  

Jenny will be running another year of Gentle Domesticity - Read her blog post HERE to learn more. 

 She will also be offering a FREE Block of the Month in 2018 "A Year in the Garden".  They are a beautiful set of stitcheries and we will both show you many ways to use them within your home or for gift giving.

So during December have a think about how your own household can benefit from reducing consumption of consumer goods and just maybe take a deep breath and slow down a little. Enjoy the every day pleasures of life and really live each day.  I promise it's worth the effort.

I am pleased to report that all of my Christmas goodies that I posted off earlier in the week have arrived with the recipients in one piece.  I was on tender hooks as I sent each of my closest friends some Tomato Chutney and Raspberry Jam as part of their  gift and I used almost all of my recycled bubble wrap stash to ensure that they were cushioned well for their long journeys.  They now all have just a little bit of my home made goodness in their pantry.

Next week I will show you all of the gifts that I handmade for them.  I really enjoyed making every gift with much care and love.  

That's one of the bonuses of living this frugal life - Satisfaction ........

And of course the recipients ALWAYS appreciate the effort and thought put into each and every gift.

All the money in the world can't buy that feeling !!

Until next time.

Love and Hugs,

Fee xx

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

This Week

It's just 2 weeks before I'm going to be laid up for at least 6 weeks so the countdown is on.  This week I have a huge list of To Do's and slowly I am working my way through them.  Today I posted out more than half of my christmas cards as well as gifts to some of my closest friends for Christmas.

I am still working on a few small things but the bulk of my gifts are done.  The shopping for the family and 6 grand babies is completed and wrapped and just waiting for the tree to be erected on Friday.

This is the first year that I have been so organised.  List making has made it so much easier as well as knowing way ahead of time what I was going to make.

My children are in charge of Christmas festivities this year and even though I am still going to be house bound, which I have been almost constantly for the last 6 months , they will take charge of all of the organising, baking etc and bring it all to me.  I will feel very spoilt - It will be the first Christmas ever as an adult that I haven't hosted a Christmas event.  I am secretly looking forward to it.

So the remainder of the week will be dedicated to crossing things off my list which I must admit has dwindled quite a lot - Thankfully.  BUT next week will be prepping projects to keep me busy whilst I am recovering.  I am hoping to work on some long term UFO's.  I really do hope that 2018 is the year of the UFO for me.  I have so many !

And if I feel up to it I will prep some meals for the freezer to take a bit of stress off hubby who does his best in the kitchen as well as taking care of me.  The poor thing will be under enough stress LOL

Finally I will leave you today with my new solar table lamp in my outdoor room.  It is just so pretty don't you think ?


Fee xx