Thursday, December 1, 2011

Just discovered ...

A fantastic new Bakery Cafe in South Melbourne.

Brasserie Bread has been running as a supplier to the catering industry in Sydney and Melbourne for some years but their Melbourne Cafe only opened ten days ago.  It is tucked away on a side street in South Melbourne and for those willing to go the extra mile to find it it is very worth it.

After dropping Jot at childcare today we decided that a breakfast out was a very good idea (to be honest neither of us can remember the last breakfast out we had that wasn't for three people).  So R gave me directions and off we went.

Wow is all I can say.  The room is clean and very new, there are samples of bread and jams and pastries on the counter space for you to nibble on while deciding on what to buy and there is a great menu of Breakfast and lunch items (all of which I believe are available no matter what time of day you visit).

R kept it simple with the Croissant with Jammery Jams but I don't go out to breakfast much so splashed out on the Sourdough Pancakes with Stewed Berries and Honeycomb Cream. 

Oh My!  The pancakes were divine.  Very light and nothing on the plate overpowered the other elements.  Now I am not a food critic or a big eater (normally) but I cleaned the plate and only allowed R one small mouthful to try.  If it was socially acceptable I might have licked the plate too, I restrained myself.

They also run free Saturday Baking Classes for kids aged 4 - 12 (so Jot is still a little young) and next year will be starting adult classes.  Each Class starts at 10am and bookings are essential.

You can find the Cafe at 150 Thistlethwaite Street, South Melbourne.  The cafe is open from 7:30am to 3pm from Monday to Satruday but is closed on Sundays and Public Holidays.


Disclaimer - The don't know me at Brasserie Breads but once again I just had to pass on the word about a great place to go.  All images are taken from the Brasserie Bread website.


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Awfuls and Beautifuls

As part of the Cognitive Behaviour Therapy I am undertaking to address my Antenatal Depression I have been asked to fit more beautifuls (things I enjoy doing) into my day to balance out the awfuls (those things I have to do).

While I was working I struggle to do this although I think I read more than I have done in years.  Now I am maternity leave I am finding it easier to squeeze them in as well as finding pleasure in more things. 

Unsurprisingly the main one I have tried to get back to (and mostly succeeded) is the sewing and quilting.  Although I am still quite limited in the fact that the sewing machine has to share desk space with my computer until February and therefore I have no storage for any fabric or notions so if I need anything I have to get them from the garage, I have been able to get back into it.

I have finished the last Oh Beehave Quilting Bee Block for Kirsty (was meant to be sent in September).






I have also finished my Nephew J birthday quilt (his brithday was about 2 weeks ago) but stupidly didn't remember to take a photo of it complete before I sent it to NZ so hopefully my sister will take one for me when it arrives.

I have also finished the MIL quilt for her Christmas present (well still need to attach the label but it is virtually complete) but no photos of that until after she has opened it - not that I think she knows about the blog but I would rather err on the side of caution.

Finally Jots childcare is having a red and green day tomorrow to celebrate the start of the festive season (Jot keeps asking if we are going to have a tree and where Santa lives - they seem to be linked in her mind).  And having had this fabric in mind for a festive skirt for her for over a year I decided to pull my finger out and finished it about 15 minutes ago  All ready in good time.  I just adore the tassles.  I used the Oliver & S Lazy Days Skirt free pattern which can be found on their blog.  One I have used a dozen or so times in the last tow years.





Now I am going to whip up a Oliver & S Popover Dress for her to wear this summer (another free pattern from their blog).  I have some great Anna Maria Horner Little Folks Voile that I have been sitting on for a while.  Time to cut into it.

Anyway, I am finding it rather easy to balance my awfuls with my beautifuls at the moment (I am not going to detail all the things I have to do here) and it is really helping me to keep some focus.  Now I really need to find a way to keep it up once the baby arrives.  I wonder if I can sew with the baby in a sling.  Worth trying maybe.




Sunday, November 20, 2011

Nappy Bag

A long long time ago (roughly 30 years) my Mum had this fantastic red bag that she used for air / train / car travel.  Given that at the time she had to have entertainment (and spare clothes etc) for three kids I remember said bag as being huge.  It probably wasn't but I was only little at the time.  I remember the bag as having two main compartments with two outside compartments (one of which always held our passports).

So when I stumbled across this beauty online it reminded me so much of Mums red bag that I knew I had to see it for myself.


I was able to track one down at the local Baby Bunting store and as of Friday I am the proud owner of one OiOi Red Faux Lizard Carry All Nappy Bag.  It comes with its own change mat, bottle cooler, wipes case and wet bag as well as multiple pockets (including one for passports).

I love it and although at the moment it is only doing duty for one child and doubling as my handbag, it has a long life ahead of it as a nappy bag.  As well as continuing as my handbag/travel bag for many years to come.

In actual fact it is nothing like Mums red bag but I am so glad that everytime I look at it I remember travelling as a family and as a kid.  I hope that some day my children will have as many fond memories as I do about travelling and maybe some of them will be triggered by My Red Bag.


Disclaimer: Oioi have no idea who I am I just love this bag and had to tell someone (or everyone) about it.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Blogtoberfest - The last day

Well once again Blogtoberfest is over today and I have to admit I did very poorly indeed.  I started off well but fell by the wayside just over half way through.  Seems to be my limit.

I'm afraid I had more posts planned but I had a couple of really bad days followed by a week with my sister from the UK and I didn't want to waste any of the time we had to write a blog post.  She left yesterday and now it is back tonormal around here.  Well nearly.

The kitchen is still not finished (only small things left to do) and it is starting to annoy me.  We have the final inspection on Wednesday so R and I need to go round tomorrow and make a list of everything we think isn't done right. 

My little sis J spent two full days of her visit with a paint brush in her hand (bless her) and we were able to finish off two rooms and get half way through a third which is great for us.  Now to try to polish off that one and at least one more before the in laws arrive on 3 December.  We had originally hoped to do a further three rooms but I need to be realisitc as there is not much I can do.  I managed about 2 hours of painting before my body said I had done to much and although there is not much left to do in the room that will become Jots we still need to do a number of things that I can't do alone (like the ceiling). 

So I am starting to focus less on the paint job (that will be R's job to worry about) and more on the soft furnishings for Jots new room.  I am thinking of getting some girly fabric and some embroidery hoops and making hanging art that way, then we can change the fabric when she wants to.  I also want to make her a book sleeve but need to refind the tutorial which I bookmarked some time ago. 

After Jot has moved rooms we are on to the nursery.  No idea about this yet as I haven't even started the babies welcome quilt and don't really know what colours to choose.  No idea on gender of baby (although I am starting to sway towards Blue) so don't want to pink it.  Then again I don't really want it to be green or yellow either so I might just blue it regardless - I think that is what we ended up doing with Jots nursery in the old house.

My Christmas Plan is coming along well.  I am about to organise a baking day at the end of November to stock up the freezer with cookie dough and cakes ready for the silly season.  As well as making some foodie christmas gifts.  Hoping to rope in a friend or two to join me so the kids can entertain each other and we can catch up. 

I also have a list of things I have to make before Christmas as well as another list of things to do and shop for but I have a feeling that some (or possibly all) of those lists will not happen.  I am getting very slow now and with only about 7 weeks to go I am feeling very ready for a break.

Finally, I hope you have a happy halloween tonight.  Are you doing anything?  We are planning on a quiet night in and have a bucket load of lollies in case we get any trick or treaters (doubt it as we had none last year and I ended up eating all the lollies).  Have a good one.

Jotsmum

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 19 - The Move

I am soo very very very glad to be home.

The move itself went well.  I actually didn't have to do anything.  I packed at the unit and then R loaded the car, drove home (dropping Jot and I off at Mainly Music on the way), unloaded the car, cleaned the rooms we were using last night, washed out the fridge and collected us from the train station.

We have discovered one or two little downsides to moving back mid renovation:

1) Dust everywhere
2) No kitchen (R has set up a temporary kitchen in the garage but I am thinking that takeaway food sounds so much better at the moment)
3) No laundry machine - did finf the nearest laundromat though so will need to take a trip on Saturday to start on the mountain of washing I have
4) No ensuite - well it is all there but the tiler hasn't finished and so we are not sure quite how water tight it is - luckily we didn't renovate the bathroom this time so we can at least have a shower.
5) No power to half the house

So far the plus side to the renovation is that we are able to use the indoor toilet (Thank you God).  Although as R pointed out the new placement of the door means that if we leave the toilet door open (which those of you with a toddler will know is sometimes not your choice) the neighbours can see you!  Once the ensuite is fully functional this will only be a problem for the youngest member of our household and as she is used to toileting in public I doubt it will bother her much for a while.

I was very pleasantly surprised to have the stone workbench for the kitchen fitted yesterday (after being told it was likely to take another 2 weeks) so I am now a little hopeful of a functional kitchen in the next 10 days.  Please keep your fingers crossed for me.  I do love the new kitchen though it looks very swish and with all these slow closing doors and drawers I can see a lot of fun ahead for us all.  Jot has already marked one drawer for hers so that will be our plastic drawer - why has she chosen the largest one?

Before and After Photos will follow but unlikely to be part of Blogtoberfest.  I just doubt it will all be finished in time as we still need to paint.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 18 - International Shopping

Getting in a day early as I know I will not get a chance to post tomorrow as it is MOVING day!

I am all for shoping handmade and ideally locally so when it comes to birthday presents for my wonderful family who live across the ocean I am sometimes stuck for choice.

I know about
Etsy - Mostly USA but also worldwide
and
Madeit - Australia

But now I have found
Notonthehighstreet - UK
and
Toggle - NZ

Edited to Add from Comments:
Folksy - UK
Oz Handmade - Australia

This should make Brithday presents easier to purchase. 

I will be AWOL tomorrow but will be back to regular programming on Wednesday (I hope).


Blogtoberfest Day 17

Help

I am drowning in packing.  I got so distracted by it this morning I forgot to check my fasting Blood Glucose Level (which is the most important when dealing with Gestational Diabetes).  I have sent R and Jot off to swimming with a full car to drop off at home on the way back and come to work.  A much more peaceful way to spend the day.  However I know how much we have to get done tonight as we have to be out of the serviced apartment by 10am.  No lie in for me tomorrow :)

Timing of leaving the apartment works quite well though as we have Mainly Music at 10am and while Jot and I are participating R can take the full car home and empty it.  Then all I need to worry about is a day of unpacking and organising and trying to figure out how to live without a kitchen (oh and where we are going to sleep).  I have demanded that the washing machine is plumbed back in (chances are a little slim) as I have no idea where our nearest laundromat is (although I am hoping for one to magicaly appear on our local shopping strip). 

I think the nights are going to be interesting as Jot has been on a cot mattress on the floor for the last 8 weeks and over the last week we have found her on the floor next to it more often than not.  I am hoping going back into her single bed will mean that there is more space for her but also think that she is going to fall out of bed a lot over the next week.  It will be nice to see how she goes in her own room again too.  I have loved having her close by BUT the fact I wake with every little squeak means my sleep is getting severly disturbed. 

I am looking forward to my bed and hoping I can actualy sleep in it this week - we haven't decided where we are going to be sleeping yet as I think we are planning to decorate the master bedroom before we move back into it.  Fingers crossed for my bed (whereever we put it).



Sunday, October 16, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 16

Another day and another titleless post.  I just have no idea what to call them at the moment as they really are just my ramblings.

I decided on this skirt to knit for Jot.  Ok I didn't decide Jot did as she saw in the picture that it was purple.  It is actually kitting up quite quickly.  I am on the middle tier already and really want to get this finished in the next week but I know that won't happen.

Tuesday is moving day.  We are moving back to our house after 8 weeks living in a serviced apartment in the city.  I have enojyed the convenience of the flat being closer to both R and my work but living in a one bedroom flat with a 3yo is trying at the best of times, throw in an over tired and emotional pregnant mum life has proven to be interesting.  I am looking forward to being back in the house surrounded by my things (even if they are in boxes) but I am not looking forward to the fact that the renovations are still not complete and we will be living without a kitchen until they finish (and I have not been given a finish date yet!).

On the plus side we will have space again and that is what I am looking forward to most I think.

My sister arrived from the UK a week today and I am so excited to see her.  I saw her last February at her wedding (blimey that can't be the last time I saw her can it!) and although she is flying solo this time I am so looking forward to catching up with her (and hopefully getting some free babysitting).  Jot is excited too and that is great.  We have plenty of work planned for her though and the poor thing will be living in a building site - hope she doesn't mind too much.

Little Sis is with us for a week and then I have an extra day of work before heading back for two and half weeks until I go on Maternity leave.  I can't really believe that it has come round so fast, yet on the other hand I am desperate for it to be here.  I am (as you may have guessed) a bit over the pregnancy this time round.

My planning for Christmas has hit a snag.  I got distracted by everything I have to do before the baby arrives so I have made an executive decision.  This Year is going to be able the kids.  If we don't already have a gift for the adults (and I have made one or two) then they will not be getting one.  I am just too tired and time shy to do the shopping.  R is in charge of the Christmas Dinner ( I will be in charge of the newborn :) ) and my Mother in Law has agreed to make us a summer pudding for dessert.  All I need to do now is to make a plan for the baking etc that we usually do during December for gifts and see if I can't allocate some to Grandma time and step back completely just to supervise :).




Saturday, October 15, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 15

I did think about this post over the last couple of days and have been wondering trying to decide if I post about it or keep it private.  I know R believes it should be kept private but if no one talks about it there is always going to be stigma about it and that is not right.

I am talking about Antenatal (and Post Natal) Depression.

I suffered with PND after JOTs arrival for about 12 months and it is actually what got me back into sewing and blogging as part of my recovery.  I had 12 months of counselling and still don't feel completely free of it.  The long and short of it for me was the disconnection I felt to Jot.  Don't get me wrong I never wanted to give her back (except maybe at 3am) but I didn't feel that first rush of love that you are always told about when about to become a new mum.  I just felt like we were in a bubble, the problem was we were in different bubbles.  I breastfed for 20 months and during the first 11-12 months it was the only time I really felt connected to her.  I am thankful for the support of my family during this time (as much as they could provide being overseas) and especially for the way R has always thought about how I am coping when planning anything.  I also am grateful for the support of the Melbourne City Council who provide free counselling for struggling parents as well as a great Movement and Music program and the Maternal and Child Health Nurses who noticed something wasn't right.

For me it is I think linked to my sleep patterns so I have better days when I have a had a good nights sleep, it is also linked to my socialisation and I realise that there is no way I could be a SAHM (and I admire all of you that are) as losing my identity as an individual and just becomeing JotsMum was a shock to me and I really struggled to link what I had been to what I had become.  Going back to work and making connections online helped enormously and gave me an outlet to be me again (not the old me but not just Jots Mum either).  People were interested in me as a person rather than as an extension to Jot.

Anyway when we decided to try again I was expecting a long journey like we had with Jot (in total it took about 4 years of trying to get my gorgeous girl).  This time round though we were surprised by a positive test on our first month of trying.  A great surprise but quite a big one to get my head around.

With the speed that this all happened, the morning sickness, the getstational diabetes (and of course the insulin), the stream of overseas visitors (which have been a bit of a blessing) and of course these renovations it is not surprising to me that I have been struggling lately.  About a month ago I walked home from work in floods of tears for no apparent reason (or not one that I can remember) and I made a decision to do something about it NOW before baby arrives.  I am terrified of suffering PND again as this time it is not only me and a baby I have to look after but Jot needs me too.

So I did some research and am now self referred to a research program being run by the Parent and Infant Research Institute run out of Heidleberg.  I start the first of 8 weeks of congnitive therapy on October 24.  This should mean I finish up just as the baby is due to arrive.  I already feel a bit better about it all just knowing that I am doing something about it.

Now I am also putting it out there to everyone who comes by to read my musings.  I hope it doesn't change peoples opinions of me but to be honest if it does I hope they ask for more details.  It is not something to be hidden away and if my talking about it brings just ome more person to seek help then I have helped. 

Blogtoberfest Day 14 - Whoops Nothing to see

Only remembered I hadn't posted at about 11:30pm last night and by which time I was in serious need of some sleep.

I therefore decided that Day 14 (nearly half way through) could be considered a failure.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 13 - Christmas is coming

The goose is getting fat.
Please put a penny in the old mans hat.
If you haven't got a penny a ha'penny will do
If you haven't got a ha'penny then God bless you.

Every year around this time someone says to me that Christmas is coming and the little rhyme above pops into my head.  I love it and had to google it today to see if I could find its origin.  It seems to me it should come out of a Dickens novel but it seems to be an old English nursery rhyme popularised by The Kingston Trio and also by John Denver and the Muppets.

Well I opened my blog reader today to be reminded that it is only 10 weeks till Christmas and that organised people are well on their way to planning the holiday.  I have to say at this point I am not one of them.  I thought that maybe I should try to get more organised this year as we will have a new arrival just before Christmas and it would be nice to have everything ready to go before I go into hospital for the birth.

So I am using this great 10 weeks to Christmas plan from Planning with Kids as well as one or two posts from Organized Christmas they have some great printable checklists to help etc This site is American so you will find that in some cases everything is finished in time for Thanksgiving.  A little confusing to me but the checklists are still very useful.

So tonight once Jot is tucked up in her bed I plan to plan!  I want to get a basic 10 week plan down on paper taking into account all the visitors we have coming, the move back to the house and of course everything I have to get ready for the baby.  Oh boy I really do need a plan.

Are you planning for Christmas?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 12 - Simple Living

Well so far I only have one link in my kids section but lots more in my Simple living section so I am posting these today and will hopefully get round to adding more to the Kids section before I post it on Friday.

Simple Living

Homemade Ricotta
Homemade Yoghurt
Yoghurt secrets
Homemade Soap
Preserving
Home Management Notebooks
Olive Oil Soap
Lotion Bars
Insect Repellent
Furniture Polish
Deodorant




Blogtoberfest Day 11 - Sewing

Yes I know I am late again but here is the current sewing list  of starred items.  I will be adding to this as and when I get time to go through the remaining items in my starred items and of course all those bookmarked pages on blogs I don't usually follow.

Sewing

Wallet to Tote
Mini Tent
The Pea Pod Carrier
Kids Teepee
Hostess Gift Box
Co-worker gifts
Car Caddy
Bedtime Storybook Caddy
Fitted Crib Sheet
Panel Curtains
Two Handed Pot Holder
Binky Leash (or Dummy Saver)
Plenty of Pockets Tote

Monday, October 10, 2011

blogtoberfest Day 10 - Cooking

I went through some of my starred items in my reader and once I got over the fact that I have nearly 500 starred items.  I didn't get through them all this weekend but I do plan to finish them in due course.  I think I will add them to this list and book mark this list in the side menu on the off chance I will get a chance to actually try some of these recipes.



Cherry Sherbert
Watermelon Granita 
Ice Coffee
Rhubarb Cobbler 
Milky Way Cake 
Red Velvet Sheet Cake 
Cinnamon Rolls 
Grasshopper Pie
Homemade Ketchup
Pumpkin Pie
Three Cheese Mashed Potato Casserole
Hot Fudge Sauce 
Texas Sheet Cake
White Choc and Macadamia Cookies
Christmas Cookies 
Baked Beans 
Cranberry Orange Coconut Cookies
Taco Seasoning 
Rainbow Cake

As you may be able to tell the Pioneer Woman is a huge inspiration to me.  Shame I never get round to trying any of the recipes :)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 9 - All caught up

I love weekends as it gives me a chance to catch up from the week and in this case catch up on my Blogtoberfest posts.

I have decided that I hate smoke alarms.  Yes they are a valuable piece of life saving equipment BUT seriously when they run out of battery does it have to be the middle of the night when you don't have another battery in the house.

Since 5:25am this morning the smoke alarm in the bedroom of the 'special' house has been beeping every 24 seconds - yes I counted it.  It has been driving me nuts but funnily enough both R and Jot slept through it.  In fact R is still sleeping through it (or at least hasn't got up in a huff to stop it).  Jot woke at her usual time and then came into bed with me for 10 minutes so I could put my hand over her ears to stop the 'bell'.  She was scared to leave the bedroom, didn't realise that the bell was in the bedroom.

So high on our shopping list this morning is a battery for a smoke alarm.  Not sure how we are going to replace it though as it is right over our bed and the ceiling is too tall for either of us to reach just standing on the bed. 

Saturday, October 8, 2011

BlogtoberfestDay 8

We don't have foxtel at home (and are not planning on getting it) but while we are in the 'special' house we have foxtel and as there is nothing on TV tonight (that I can settle to) I thought I would channel hop Foxtel and I have found Lifestyle Food and more specifically 'Ace of Cakes' and 'Cake Boss'.  Both of which are dedicated to decorating cakes.  Wow there are some amazingly talented people out there.

So I am now being inspired to make a cake - problem is Jot has just had a birthday and mine is the next one that comes around where I will be 37 weeks pregnant.  I think I will have to try to keep this inspiration for Jot next year unless I find another reason to bake a special cake between now and then.

Chances of a special cake being made - slim to non existent - but a girl can dream can't she?

Blogtoberfest Day 7

I have an excuse for not posting yesterday evening to ensure I caught up as was my original plan.

I moved desks at work yesterday and although I was really careful about lifting and moving things I think I did too much.  It took 3 hours to move 3 people and then I had to unpack my own desk and get it sorted.    I was fine till the walk home (usually takes 20 mins) but suddenly mid walk I started to hurt and itjust got worse and worse. I even had to call R to come home from work to put Jot to bed as I couldn't get down to her level (she is sleeping on a mattress on the floor in the 'special house').  I also rang the ob to check all was ok and he seemed to think it would be but if it got worse to go in to the hospital and he would meet me there.

Luckily it seemed to settle down a bit after some panadol.  Back this morning but another dose of panadol will send it on its way.

So I really will catch up today as there isn't much to watch on TV tonight.  I just need to make sure I don't overdo things again today.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 6

I'm a day late already - how is this happening?  Actually I know how it happened I went home expcting the laptop to be there and R had taken it to work so I couldn't post.  Now I am playing catch up and I hate that :(.

I haven't got very far with my lists for next weeks posts either but I am working on it.  Hope to get some time over the weekend.  Who am I kidding I will need to delay knitting to get it all done.  I have however decided on my categories for next week.

1) Cooking - Monday
2) Sewing - Tuesday
3) Kids Stuff - Wednesday

Ok that is as far as I have got at the moment so I still need two more lists for Thursday and Friday.  I need to get my thinking cap on.  I might split the sewing one into two as I know that I have far too many of them bookmarked.



Thursday, October 6, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 5 - Knitting

I am about to start a new project (which knowing my track record will still be on the needles in blogtoberfest next year).

I want to knit Jot a skirt.  She wants Purple and White and she has already chosen the wool.  I have the needles I just need to find a pattern.

Ravelry is my favorite location for patterns and so far I have narrowed it down to two.  I really need to be careful about how long it is going to take me to knit though.  I want something that is actually quite quick and simple.

Twirly Girly Skirt  - I love this one and I think it great taht it can be knitted up in the round and also in other yarms - I might try this in a bamboo cotton for summer

Twirly Skirt remix - This one I really like because it is a closer fit and I think that is lovely on small kids.  Luckily Jot will fit the remix size.

I have downloaded both and I am looking for some opinions as to which to make first - I know I wil probably end up with both but until I know the gender of the baby my knitting is limited to Jot. 

Other knitting patterns currently in my ravelry To Do list are:

Monster Chunks - I love these and I really must knit some - BUT want to get the skirt done first.
Bloom - This one I have been meaning to make for an age but I am still a little initmidated by it.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 4 - Mainly Music

Tuesday is fast becoming one of Jots favorite days (and mine too if I am honest) and is is mostly down to a group just started at our church.  We have just started a 'Mainly Music' group. 

Our church (St James Old Cathedral) is in the heart of Melbourne right next to Flagstaff gardens within easy reach of public transport (Parking is not great due to some building works but spots on King Street open up at 10am) .  It was just round the corner from our old flat and when we moved we just prefered to stay with the congregation we knew well. 

So back to our Mainly Music group.  It is run by us (a group of around 5 volunteers headed up by Jenny our choir director) who take turns each week to do various jobs to make the session run.  All of us have pre school children as the group is open to anyone under the age of five. 

It only started three weeks ago and so far only with members of the church as we wanted to iron out the teething issues we may have (just one or two so far) but we open our doors to all comers next Tuesday 11th October.

It is an exciting venture for us as not many people even know the church is there let alone that we have a great kids music group like this.  Jot has a blast and to be honest I use it as a bargainning chip to get her into bed on a Monday night (for some reason she is particularly reluctant to go to bed on Monday).

The program is very simple:

10:15-10:30 - Arrival
10:30-11:00 - Music Program
11:00-11:30 - Morning Tea and Playtime

Although today we got distracted chatting and didn't leave till midday.

The music is great and is very catching.  There is one song about dancing feet that I am still humming to myself now (5 hours later).  I took some photos the very first week but can't get at them - I might add them later if I remember.

It always exhausts Jot and that is not an easy feat any more and she is usually asleep by the time we have finished at the market afterwards.  The group is such fun and event he adults get a bit of a work out.

If you are in Melbourne, have preshcool children and want to join us next week please pop along.  All we ask is a $5 donation to the running of the group (all money raised is put back into the program) and some smiling faces.

If you would like to come along please contact Matt Williams (03 9329 0903 or info@sjoc.org.au) as spaces are limited.
I hope to see someone new there.

Take care
Jots Mum

Monday, October 3, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 3 - A plan (maybe)

I really enjoyed doing my week long series last year on simple living and really wanted to have a plan this year for something similar.  Something I can post about without a camera.  I have to say I haven't come up with anything yet - But I will so expect a series of some sort towards the end of the month.

Instead I have another plan.

Are you like me?  Do you read 150+ blogs on a daily (or almost daily) basis?  Do you see hundreds of things you want to cook, sew, knit, try?  Do you bookmark them and then promptly forget what they are (or worse where they are)?

Yes - I thought so.

So my mini plan for this month is to review all those posts I have bookmarked (or starred in my blog reader) and

a) make a list here
b) action them (this might need to wait till I get back into my house with a working kitchen but I can try).

This will be next weeks plan as the first thing I need to do is to look at them all and categorise them.  According to my blog reader I have over 200 posts starred and this doesn't even take into account those I have bookmarked elsewhere.  This may take some time.



Blogtoberfest Day 2 - Royal Melbourne Show

Its only day 2 and I am behind already but I stick with the theory (as I did last year) that until midday it is Day 2 somewhere in the world and therefore it doesn't matter I am a few hours late.

We spent yesterday at the Royal Melbourne Show (so tempting to put Royal Norfolk Show - the agricultural show of my youth) and I have to say that tired does not begin to explain how I was feeling when we got home.

Pregnant ladies should not spend 5 hours in the sun pushing their three year olds around in the buggy - they should be pushed around in their own buggy for 5 hours :).

We had a great time.  Jot loved the animals and was running round like and idiot when she saw the cows and the sheep.  She sat quietly on our laps to watch the horse jumping but wouldn't sit through the monster trucks (too noisy Mummy).

The queue for the showbag pavillion put me off completely so I got to sit in the sun with the buggy while R took Jot in and magnificently came out 25 minutes later with two bags and a pair of fairy wings for Jot.  By the time he came out the queue was twice the size as when he went in.

We caught up with a couple of R's mates who were working at the show this year and although I looked for ladies I knew at the CWA canteen I didn't see anyone I knew.  Probably all hard at work behind the scenes making scones.

I have to say it was a great way to pass the day and the only thing I will change in the future is NOT to let Jot fall asleep in the car on the way home (a bit hard as we had to go via the house so it took twice as long as it should have) as she was up till late  Maybe a good thing with the daylight savings change.

So one very exhausted Mummy, a tired Jot and R who wanted to stay longer :)  A very good day.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Blogtoberfest Day 1 – What to talk about?

Day 1 of blogtoberfest and already I am at a loss at what to write about.


As I have no plan yet (might try to figure that out tonight) I thought it might be a good idea to follow up my pregnancy vent of the other day with some things that I am enjoying right now (in no particular order).

• Jot and her incessant demands to knit. At three I am not sure how to get her started so any ideas would be gratefully appreciated. We tried one of those French knitting bees and she never got interested in it. Presumably because it is not like the knitting I do.

• The never ceasing movement of this baby. I know he/she/it is well as I am constantly being pummelled and it more than makes up for the rest of the stuff my body is going through at the moment. We are still at the stage that as soon as R places his hand on the bump all movement stops which I find incredibly funny but R can’t remember the same happening with Jot.

• My gorgeous hubby R who is taking on more and more of looking after Jot (when she lets him) so I can get some more sleep, have a bath, throw up or just sit on the couch and put my feet up.

• Time to think. We are currently living in a serviced apartment in Southbank as we are renovating our house. Everything is packed and although I really want to be back home I am enjoying the short walk to commute to work (and Jot childcare) and the fact that I am not surrounded by my stuff. That sounds silly as it is what I am starting to miss BUT as I don’t have my sewing machine here I can sit on the couch in front of the TV and design quilts, think about maybe starting my own business, names for the baby (really not getting far on this one) and just generally having time to think without the constant pull of 101 UFOs.

• Family – My fantastic Mum went out of her way to find a new ‘Daisy’ comforter for Jot when our Daisy decided to jump out of the buggy and go exploring around Melbourne. So about two weeks after we lost Daisy she returned having visited grandma in England

So although I have a number of days each week when this pregnancy sucks there is much for me to be grateful for and the good certainly outweighs the bad.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Blogtoberfest starts tomorrow

And I have signed up. I have no idea what I am going to post on each day (or how for that matter) but I aim to get a lot further along that last year when I went over on my internet allowance about middway through the month. If you are interested pop on over to tinniegirl and join in the fun.
Tinniegirl Blogtoberfest 2011

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pregnancy Sucks

Why oh why am I not one of the lucky ones who falls pregnant and breezes through the next nine months glowing?

A colleague recently told me ‘it was your choice – stop complaining’.

How does it follow that just because I chose to have a child I automatically have to suffer in silence if my pregnancy is not what I expected it to be.

Yes I chose to have a baby. I did not choose to have morning sickness for 20+ weeks, back pain, insomnia and insulin dependant gestational diabetes.

Why can’t I let off steam when it all gets too much for me to deal with, when the end still seems so far off and the reward still seems so unreal.

So here I am letting off a little bit of pregnancy steam.

THIS PREGNANCY SUCKS!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Oh My!

It has been six months since I last posted.  Sorry, there has been a lot going on and to be honest I am not sure where to start. 

Melbourne Modern Quilt Guild Oh Beehave Blocks





My Mondrian Quilt - blocks made by the lovely Melbourne Modern Quilt Guild Oh Beehave Quilt Bee




 
And the main reason I have not been online.
 
 
This little tyke is due in January.

We have also had visitors from the UK and packed up the house and moved out while renovating (hope to be back in in mid October)

We have more visitors from the UK in late October and again over Christmas and witht he renovations and everything else going on I have not had time to sew much.  Trying to do some knitting though but it is all going really slowly.

I have some photos of finished quilts on my camera but we packed the cable so can't get them onto the computer.  Typical.

I promise not to leave it so long next time and I will plan to take part in Blogoctoberfest to get me back into the habit of regular posting.

Take care
Jots Mum

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Fandango - Progress

Well the blocks are finished and the layout decided now thanks to some rather dodgy cutting on my behalf which resulted in this block

IMG_7939

I need to trim them all down before sashing.  Now just to work out what size they are going to end up.  Something for another day I think.  I am about to start playing with my MIL quilt design which I am really excited about.  I really hope she likes it :)

Jots Mum

Friday, March 25, 2011

Whoops - I have been busy :)

Whoops I can't believe it is nearly a month since I last posted.  I guess working 4 days a week really makes time fly.  It is still exhausting and in fact I have been off sick for the last week and a half which of course I am blaming on the 4 day week :).  I have shingles and for those of you who haven't had it before it hurts!!!  I am due back to work on Monday (really have to go back as I don't have any more sick leave left) but I am still incredibly tired and in a fair amount of pain.

But all that aside I have been busy crafting.

I have finished 2 quilt tops

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for a baby due August 2011

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for my nephew J bday in November (the applique was needed as Jot took to the quilt top with a pair of scissors)

Finished off J&T Wedding Quilt (still need to put on the label)

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Front

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Back

MMQG Oh Beehave blocks for Rachel

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Burp cloths for numerous new babies.

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 IMG_7931

And lastly I have knitted two hats for Jot.  I am not going to show a picture of the first as it is about two inches too short and it really badly made (but in my defence I was knitting while feeling my worst)

IMG_7933

I am in the middle of my last 5 Fandango blocks and although I would like to get the top finished this month realistically I won't really get the chance in the next week (I will try though). 

I was meant to make my big sis bday and xmas gifts this month too but the materials needed haven't arrived from the US yet.  So I have been focusing on quilt tops this month and will focus on birthdays and christmas for both my big sis and my niece (for whom I think I have everything) in April.

I also designed my MIL quilt for her Christmas present as they will be with us at Christmas and I would love to see her face when she opens it and have also been working on a design for a quilt for my parents ruby wedding anniversary (which is in two days - I was convinced it was next year so have talked my parents into waiting for their present :) )  Not sure if I am going to go with something I design myself or some sort of an Irish chain.  Lots to think about.

For now though I am think I might curl up in front of the TV and attempt to make Jot some mittens to match the hat. This could be amusing :)

Have a good weekend

Jots Mum

Monday, February 28, 2011

Things are changing and February Reckoning

Things are changing round here wth my increase in days at work to 4 a week.  I have been at it for two weeks and I am really feeling the shift.  I think maybe three days a week was where I should stay but we will see how we go for the next couple of months.

This has meant that I have had got very little done in February and so I am going to re-evaluate my goals for 2011.

February


BIL1 & Dad - B'day and Christmas gifts - Not Done

Sampler BOM - Block-a-palooza at least two blocks - Not Done

MMQG Block February - Done

MMQG August Sample Block No2 - Done

Fandango Quilt - Piece at least 5 more blocks - Done 3 (I think)

Bind J&T Wedding quilt this one depends on when it comes back from the quilter. - In progress

Bind Jots Doll Quilt - Done

Finish last leftover item from 2010 - Not Done

And there have been no additional things made this month.  I am exhausted a lot at the moment with the 4th day at work and juggling Jot on the train each morning.  So although I am having a number of no technology evenings each week I am usually curled up in bed approaching sleep and I am feeling completely behind in my goals.  So here I am after two months revising my first two goals of 2011.

Goal 1 - Family

I am amending this one by cutting out all the handmade gifts for the men in my life.  This cuts the list down by 6 people.  I was struggling to find the research time for gifts for men (they are so much harder than for women)  So in 2011 we will be buying for the men but I plan to reinstate the boys for 2012. 

New list:

Jan - SIL (Mar)
Feb -
Mar - Big Sis (July)
Apr - Neice (July)
May - MIL (Sept)
June - Mum (Sept)
July - Jot (Sept)
Aug - Lil Sis (Nov)
Sept - Nephew 1 (Nov)
Oct - Nephew 2 (Jan)
Nov & Dec - Xmas stocking fillers and Kris Kringle as well as CC gifts etc.

This makes life much more managable.

I am also going to revise Goal 2 - Me which was to piece, sash and bind a sampler quilt.  I really wanted to get onto this one but as I am completing one block a month for the MMQG Oh Beehave Quilting Bee I am getting to try new blocks as we go.  I am therefore retracting this goal but replacing it with the following:

To complete at least 5 quilts in 2011 (to gift in 2011)

I have a list of 8 quilts I will be attempting in 2011 and I am now determined to complete (and gift) at least 5 of them.

My general life goals we are better on track for.  I do need to do the Feb actuals and the March budget but on whole we are tracking well for this.  Growing our own food is also moving along happily, we are over run with Zucchini and the Pumpkins have started already so I am now on a search for pumpkin recipes.  Finally my no technology time, these are actually being helped by my extra day at work I just wish I had the energy and mental capacity to sew during them rather than sleep but I am sure this will come as I get used to the new routine.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

TV Unit Face lift

Some time ago (about September last year) we decided that it was silly not to use the 'good' sitting room on a daily basis - I mean what was I thinking if you have a room use it!  When M&D were over from the UK we put them to work with a paint brush and roped them is an furniture movers.  We had everything how we wanted it with one exception.  The only TV aerial is in a corner - usually not a problem but due to the position of the doors and windows a long TV unit (like we have) is not going to work.  We have been on the look out for a corner unit ever since.

Just after Christmas we came across one in our local Salvation Army shop for $50, rescued it and brought it home.  It really didn't go with our nice white furniture so it needed a face lift.

Before:

IMG_7748

Its not totally before as we had already taken the doors off for painting but this was as soon as I remembered to take a photo.

A few coats of paint later - no matter what it says on the time one coat is never enough over dark wood - it looks like this and sit nicely in our sitting room.

IMG_7840 

I love it but Jot is not impressed.  She has the whole cupboard to put her stuff into but hates the fact she can't reach the DVD player to change whatever it is we are watching in the middle of a crucial part.

I hope you all had a good weekend and I will be back later in the week with some sewing (I hope).  Have a good week.

JotsMum

Monday, January 31, 2011

January reckoning

Well here is the end of the first month of the year and already one of my goals has been pushed back.

However my creativity has been flowing and I am so excited about all the new quilt blocks I tried this month that I am not upset that my sampler quilt block hasn't been done.

So January is looking like this:

January

SIL - B'day and Christmas gift - Done - Christmas gift will be finished tonight.

Sampler BOM - Hole in the Barn Door - Not done but have decided to follow Quilt Dads Block-a-palooza instead from 1 Feb

MMQG Block - Done

Finish left over items from 2010 (x2) - 1 done

Bind Jot Dolls Quilt - not done but have at least attached the binding now.

* Fandango Quilt - Cut and Piece - 5 blocks down 11 to go

* Quilts for Queensland Blocks x10 (4 log cabin, 3 disappearing nine patch and 3 stars - not quite sure of their exact name) - complete and will be sent to Corrie at the end of next week

* Sunhat for Jot - done

* Childcare Sheet Bag for Jot - done

* August MMQG Block - The first of my two sample blocks have been made and I am now really excited about this quilt.  I will do the other one next week but you may have to wait till I get my blocks back in August before I show it off :).

The starred items were not on my original list for January so I have done well.

So as off tonight my February list looks like this:

February

BIL1 & Dad - B'day and Christmas gifts

Sampler BOM - Block-a-palooza  at least two blocks

MMQG Block February

MMQG August Sample Block No2

Fandango Quilt - Piece at least 5 more blocks

Bind J&T Wedding quilt this one depends on when it comes back from the quilter.

Bind Jots Doll Quilt

Finish last leftover item from 2010

Lets see how I go and what else I get distracted with.

Have a good week everyone.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Creative Juices are flowing

I have managed 3 more blocks for Retromummy and Quilts for Queensland which brings me up to 7 so far.  I am going to try for three more which will be 10 but as my Mum arrives on Saturday and I am working for the next two days I am not certain if I will manage it.
IMG_7788
Sorry the pictures aren't that great.
I also finished up a bag for Jots sleep sheet at childcare.  Now I see it I realise I should have used a simpler pattern for the letters and a more complicated pattern for the bag.  Oh well you live and learn and Jot likes it so that is all that counts.
IMG_7793
And a close up of the applique (my machine is having some tension troubles so I decided to hand applique the letters and I am really happy with how my even(ish) my stitches came out.
IMG_7795
So now I am off to purchase some fabric for my month of the MMQG Oh Beehave and try to figure decide what to make my SIL for Christmas as I only have 10 days left of January to finish it in.
Take care
Jots Mum

Sunday, January 16, 2011

No Technology Evenings

As part of my 'big' Goal for 2011 I decided to limit my use of the tv and internet and wow it has made a huge difference to my productivity at the sewing machine.  I will show the results shortly.
In addition to time spent at the sewing machine I have a knitting project on the go and have read 5 books!  Yes you read that right 5 books (nearly 6) in 2 weeks.  I will admit they are all books I have read before but we finally got round to unpacking our books at Christmas (only 50 weeks after we moved in) and it has been great to rediscover them.  I am reading the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind and am now on Book 6 of 11 'Faith of the Fallen'.  I will also admit to getting so engrossed that I have forgotten to eat dinner a couple of times and been up well past my normal bedtime most nights.  I think that I need to pace myself a bit better.
At the Sewing table I have:
Completed my MMQG Oh Beehave Block for Anna
IMG_7758
Create 4 blocks for Quilts for Queensland run by Retromummy
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Started on my 'Fandango Quilt' one block complete and 2 partially finished but wanted to get the Q4Q blocks finished before I went back to it
IMG_7768
One Sun Hat for Jot for Childcare (she refused to model it for me but she does like it as she chose the fabrics)
IMG_7780  IMG_7781
And I made my SIL birthday present (now I just need to figure out her Christmas one)
IMG_7771
I think that is it :).  I have also made up a Kids Tool Belt for my nephew O (who has a Jan birthday) but was in such a rush to get it in the mail to NZ that I forgot to take a photo of it.
I just hope the creativity continues as it makes me feel good about myself and more importantly keeps me away from the chocolate.
Take care
Jots Mum

Its been raining

It rained a lot last week down here.  Nowhere in the region of what they received in Queensland or in parts of regional Victoria that have suffered with flooding but more than I have seen in a while.

The wheelbarrow was empty when we parked it up there on Wednesday evening.  Jot was running her cars around the inside like a race track. 

Yesterday morning it looked like this:

IMG_7774

Jot got very wet but enjoyed playing in the water for a change.

Take care

Jots Mum

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Quilts for Queensland

It was suggested on my previous post that I use my leftover Fandango squares to make a 'Quilt for Queensland' as run by RetroMummy.  Unfortunately due to the time frame and a lot of things already planned for the next couple of months I think a full quilt is beyond me.  Instead I am going to do up some quilt blocks and send those off so I can still do my bit.

qld quilt button

To all of you up in Qld or in the Victiorian towns that have been hit overnight.  Stay safe and we are praying for you all.

Jots Mum

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I'm feeling stupid ...

Want to know why?

In my lunch break yesterday I carefully worked out how many 5 inch squares I need for my 'FANDANGO' quilt.  I need 108.

So why am I feeling stupid - you ask?

I just cut 180!!!

So do I:
  1. make more blocks with the extra squares and make my quilt much larger
  2. use the extra squares for a small lap quilt
  3. use the squares for something else completely random.
Jotsmum

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Jots Quilt

I mentioned last month that I have actually finished Jots quilt that I started in October 2009.

I had been struggling to find decent weather (in fact I still haven't had a nice day here with not much wind) to take a photo so the other day I gave in and photographed it on our sofa.  Please forgive the photos they really don't do it justice.

IMG_7632 IMG_7633
I gave it to Jot at Christmas and she loves it even asking for it at bed time so I think it is a hit.

My very first completed quilt.  The first of many more to come.