Monday, January 23, 2012

Year of the Dragon

Kung Hei Fat Choy - Cantonese for Happy New Year.
Welcome the Year of the Dragon . A very auspicious year  it would seem … from the International Business Times … The Year of the Dragon is one of the most revered years of the Chinese New Year calendar, and those born under the sign are regarded as innovative, passionate people who are colourful, confident and fearless…. the Dragon is sometimes called a "karmic sign." The Dragon is larger than life and its appearance means that big things are to come. The Year of the Dragon is a flowing river, not a stagnant lake, so things happen quickly earlier in the year. The Dragon marks progression, perseverance and auspiciousness. It may also bring about unpredictable events.

To celebrate the new year we spent a couple of days in Sydney with our  family for the launch of the Chinese New Year Festival. We are sorry we will not be able to enjoy the legendary parade next weekend, but it clashes with the beginning of the school year in NSW… not good to have grandchildren celebrating late into the night before their first day of term.
What does Chinese New Year mean to our family?
Being together as a family,  of course ….
 Food, food and more food….

Tradition - Lion dances….

And parades ….

 Lots of good luck red….Red packets with money.... 

Making good wishes for the future .... 

New clothes in bright colours …
Chasing away  the bad spirits….
And welcoming the new and the good ….
Learning about heritage ….
Religious observance...

Reflection and meditation...
 Just having fun together regardless of the weather.... 
And when any more celebrating is just too much, there's nothing better than a vegemite sandwich and a sleep in the arms of someone who loves you....

Thanks to my beautiful family for making this Chinese New Year  celebration very special for me and to all  my friends and family my  best wishes for happiness, peace and love in the Year of the Dragon. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

UFO's Already?

I started the year really well with a schedule for finishing projects - this obviously didn't last very long. Here I am  just starting the third week of January  and already my timetable has collapsed- with a UFO - Unfinished Object...The photo above  is a beaded doll in progress. Hopefully by posting it in this state this week, I will be able to post a photo of the finished project next week? However, here is one doll which I did finish during the week . The doll looked so Asian that I chose a maroon oriole for her bird companion. The Maroon Oriole is a strikingly coloured bird whose usual habitat is the tropical and sub tropical forests of South East Asia.

I think the main reason for being behind schedule is that I also helped our grandson make some animated movies during the week. It was a lot of fun - setting up the various scenes, but I now have a lot more respect and admiration for animators. I took over 100 photos to make a 7 second animated movie - all under the close direction of my  seven year old grandson. We are very proud of  his creative efforts.  Here are the links to the movies. Movie 1 and Movie 2

And it was the second week of TAG TUESDAY with a theme of Snow Sports. I made two for the TT blog  and then another two with photos of our beautiful Finnish exchange daughter who is a keen snow sportswoman.

 Hope you will pop in at TAG TUESDAY and go to the homepage to see all the amazing tags from mixed media artisits from many different countries.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Temari and Tags

 Temari (literally translated “hand ball”) is a Japanese folk craft that originated in China and was introduced to Japan five or six hundred years ago. Traditionally, the balls were constructed from wrapped kimono fabric remnants and silk threads. They were made by mothers and grandmothers for children to play with. Nowadays, decorative embroidered temari represent a highly valued and cherished gift symbolizing friendship and loyalty. ... This is part of the description of a workshop I will be teaching at the Contemporary Craft Retreat in October. I just finished the paperwork for the advertising copy this afternoon. The photo above is one of my latest balls - completed while my mother was visiting over the Christmas break. I had her ball as a guide. In the workshop however, we will be completing a much simpler design like the "polystar" patterns seen below. 

As part of my New Year's resolutions to so something different each week, I joined the Tag Tuesday blog group. Each Tuesday participants make a tag using the specified theme as inspiration. Then a photo of the tag is posted on the blog.. Here are four I made last week - the theme was Snow . Please check out all the really beautiful tags here.  There are 57 participants so there are lots to of tags to enjoy. Hope you will pay a visit to Tag Tuesday.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year

Happy New Year ... may 2012 be bountiful - full of love, fun, laughter and good times. And if the times prove not to be so great, may you find the courage, inspiration and support to remain positive. 

Just sharing a great little Christmas crafty idea - created by my daughter -in-law. These cute little boxes were filled with sweets and little treasures which were prizes in our family Christmas treasure hunt . Our treasure hunt arms the children with individualized clue sheets ( to suit their ages) and they search the house for coloured Christmas baubles . When they return with the baubles, they receive a prize...