Friday, December 26, 2008
Saturday, December 20, 2008
It's been a busy week. My card making class had a Christmas morning tea on Thursday. Even with all the festive food, we were still able to make some lovely cards and enjoy the camaraderie of the morning. I had also made some little tree decorations for the ladies who sit at the same table as I do each week, so obviously we have become friends. These are basil card tags, covered with decorative papers, and embellished with polymer clay 3D Christmas symbols. (mostly poinsettias). On the back, I chose a fairly plain decorative paper, so I could write a message. These decorations were instead of cards - I was quite happy with the result.
Today was the Hello Dollies Christmas party and the annual Christmas sale at Anne's Glory Box. Quilts, dolls, teddy bears and all sorts of treasures at absolute bargain prices - no one could resist. Like everyone else, I left with a bag full of stuff I absolutely need! I think I was quite restrained with only one bag. It was wonderful to have the Sydney dollies join us in Newcastle for the day, and we revisited the Adage challenge, with those dolls on display again today. The food was special and really delicious, and we all had a great time discussing doll projects past, present and future, making the little beaded stars and swapping gifts on a star theme. What a happy time we had - it must be Christmas!
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Last night, Jim and I travelled to Sydney to a 120th birthday - our friends Bill and Maureen (whose birthdays are 12 and 13 December respectively) have a combined age of 120! Their sons and daughter organised a fantastic surprise birthday for them . It was a great night, with their friends and family coming from all over Australia for the celebration - and they had no idea until they came in the door to rousing applause and singing.
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Today was SALE day... it was rather hectic getting things ready for the sale, especially as I had the whole month away in PNG in September and seemingly less and less time to work on creating stuff. However, there are many talented women in Newcastle and thanks to good friends - Diana Carson, Wendy Scott, Bobbi Oliver, Jane Lambert , Dolores Prete and Judy Hardy who participated in the sale by bringing in such great creative work, we had a fantastic display of high quality handmade treasures. And of course, we had some really positive customers so it was a great success.
What were the best sellers ? Surprisingly - the feltfollies all went quickly as did the silver jewellery and felted bags. It was also wonderful to sell one of Wendy's quilts to someone who really appreciated her beautiful work.
Tips for sales in your home and sanity? 1) Be organised 2) Have a husband who is willing to help, supply continuous tea and coffee to sellers and buyers alike, make lunch and generally pack and carry. 3) Gift wrap 4) Have a great network of friends 5) Be positive at all times 6) Keep remembering that having fun is more important than sales.
Today we have been able to support the Mando project - equipment for a special classroom for students with disabilites, and provide some medical equipment for a hospital in Polillio in the Philippines. Thank you everyone.
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
I was very excited on Saturday to have my White Knight and Owl Woman returned, with blue ribbons and red rosettes from the Sydney Doll and Bear Guild Show 2008 - which was held in Hornsby last weekend. I was even more thrilled to get such positive critiques from the judge - 100 points for the beaded knight and horse ( it also won first prize in the mixed media section of the Contemporary Clay Competition last month) and 98 points for the owl woman. Congratulations to Dolly friends, Ann Maullin who won the professional section with the really stunning doll she made for the last challenge, and Marg Laughlin whose beautiful doll, Hunter Belle, won the cloth doll section.
Remember to check out the great items in the ETSY DUST team sale ( this month - only a few days left- to get a bargain in the Oceans and Islands theme sale. Just look for items with the tag 'DUST TEAM SALE '. DUST (Down Under Street team) is a group of Australian Artists, Craftspeople and Artisans who support ETSY and wish to promote independent handcrafted goods here in Australia and worldwide.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
This week was also a big week for our oldest grandson, Brandon, who completed his week long orientation at school. He was very happy and excited about being at "big" school and really didn't need his mother to accompany him. We looked after little brother William while their mum, Kellie, went to school to learn about Jolly Phonics and Numeracy to support Brandon next year.Felt is still my creative passion of the moment. This week, I prepared a few samples for my felt embellishment demonstration at Dollies today. I am really happy with my 'Underwater Fantasy" felt embellished bag and my little needlefelted elves (photographed near my felted bag, now complete with handmade wooden button). The idea of using cookie cutters to provide a template for needle felting was also a hit with some of the Dollies members - the sample shown is the little needlecase. All the other samples will probably be arty brooches, pieces of fabric to make dolls from, or additions to my handbags. Busy week!
I gave Bobbi her birthday present today - another little "felted" item, a collaged felt covered journal. It features a stamped image on a used tea bag paper, applied to cloth with gel medium. Bobbi told me how to apply your own art work onto a used tea bag and I decided to try it out. I stamped the images instead just as an experiment. The yo yos were also from a piece of silk scarf Bobbi collected in Thailand. Hope she liked it.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Saturday, November 1, 2008
We met Riikka when she came to Australia last July, and have taken her on a whale watching cruise from Nelson Bay (only one whale sighted that day) and spent time with her at various Rotary functions and meetings. Many thanks to our friend, Pam, who was Riikka's first "host mother ' for organising so many things like school, bank accounts, health card etc for Riikka in her first few months here. Riikka moved to us last Monday, and on the first night, we went to the Rotary Club of Myall Coast (Tea Gardens) for their annual debate - Rotarians vs Tea Gardens Primary School. On Thursday, Riikka joined other exchange students on the Warren Wander - four days of sightseeing and experiencing rural life in the western NSW.
It's a busy life for exchange students!
Monday, October 27, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
I made a journal of the process and it looks great. perhaps if I hadn't spent so much time with the journal I may have had time to finish the ugly boyfriend. Anyway, I did think in the end, having a photo in a locket was less cliched. All the other creations were just so imaginative and everyone had researched so much and as Vicki said " this was a brain stretch" . Cheyin received an overwhelming vote of approval for her interpretation of "The early bird catches the worm." Her doll is certainly a winner - we all made a connection immediately. It is also beautifully done and every shopping bag was filled with miniatures of all the stuff we love to add to our stashes. Congratulations to all - there were some really fantastic interpretations of the popular sayings... thanks Fay for challenging us and thanks to all for your inspiring work.
Monday, October 13, 2008
The completed classrooms - last day in Mando
Me and newborn at Goroka Hospital
Our PNG "home"