Green thumb

I love food. Love eating it. Love watching it being made. Love the whole process around the production of food.

My bum and tum are testament to just how much I love it! :)

That being said, I’ve always been a bit distanced from it. My mum is a chef, so while I was living with her (cheaper rent) she did most of the cooking, and when I moved out I’d make easy meals, or, do takeaways. Oh, and mum was still sending me home with packages of food every Sunday!

It’s only recently that I’ve start expanding my repertoire. Trying out different things, and actually using the massive collection of cookbooks that I own!

This experimentation also includes building my own herb garden, of sorts.

The property has a massive lemon tree out back, and a huge bush of basil near the kitchen door. I realised how much I loved being able to totter over to these trees and get FRESH ingredients for my cooking. So I wondered what else I could do?

Since then a lime tree and a rosemary bush have been planted. I’m thinking of also planting a pot of thyme. Everything I’ve done has been in pots, since when I leave this house (I rent) I want to take them with me.

I’m also thinking about planting a lavender bush or two. Not too sure how well these will do in pots, but I’ll find out.

But, what else?

The rule has got to be easy care, can live in pots, and handle a bit of wind and cold. Being functional as well as ornamental is a huge plus.

By summer I want to be able to sit on the garden furniture on my deck and enjoy the smells from all the herbs and fruit. Have friends over for dinner and be able to make them wholesome and nutricious meals, using ingredients straight out of my garden.

I’m not going all Martha Stewart on you btw. I’m just taking an active interest in the preparation of my food, and what goes into it. At the end of the day, if I’m eating better and saving on the food bill, I’m happy.

My Kusaie Lime tree, named "Kusaienagi" after the main character of the anime Ghost in the Shell

My Kusaie Lime tree, named “Kusaienagi” after the main character of the anime Ghost in the Shell

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Burnt out baby

So, I’m a little burnt out.

Frustrated with my life.
Frustrated with people.
Frustrated with just about everything.

Part of this frustration is with my interests, and my stitching and blogging has suffered for it.

And I can only really blame myself, because at the end of the day, I’m the only person that can do something about all this crap.

So I’m switching things up a bit.

  1. The Just Nan SAL will continue, but I won’t be taking part myself. After a rather  negative experience with two Just Nan fans, I’m taking a break.
  2. I’ve pulled out of some of the SALs I was taking part in. I am just not in the mood for obligation stitching right now.
  3. I might blog more about other aspects of my life here. So hopefully you guys n gals are ok with a bit of geekery, cooking and rambling.
  4. From Sunday I am embarking on a lifestyle change. I need to get my weight under control because at the root of my problems, I think, is how un-happy I am with myself.

There we are. Apologies if I’ve been un-communicative. I know I owe a few people emails and parcels. Thank you so much for your patience, and I hope you’ll be patient with me for a bit longer, while I get my life sorted.

I’ll be updating the May Just Nan SAL post with photos this weekend, and then picking the winner.

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Just Nan SAL May update

Hello everyone,
my deepest apologies for the delay in getting this post up. The last week has been a bit of a mess for me, and I know I am needing to do quite a few things in the stitching space for people. I have not forgotten.

Just getting this post up so members can start sharing their blog links. I’ll be posting photos here in 9 hours when I get home from work.

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Nora Corbett’s Tiger Lily

Sometimes when you want something, the universe eventually answers. Something happens. A single comment, a message put out there…

Many of you know that Nora Corbett’s “Tiger Lily” cross stitch design was a chart that I really wanted.

It rated in the top 3 of my most wanted cross stitch designs.

So when I mentioned on a local cross stitch group that I was after Tiger Lily, a fellow stitcher said “I have that, I won’t stitch it, do you want it?”

What’s even better is that she didn’t want payment, even after I told her how much it went for. In the end I convinced her to atleast let me get her a design she did want… so… there you have it.

Tiger Lily is finally mine. :)
Thank you Cheryl!

After a fair bit of fussing around re: the fabric… with a massive floss toss and many stitchers letting me know their favourites… I ended up stitching Tiger Lily on something completely different… 32 count “Jacks Rum” opalescent Belfast by Hand Dyed by Stephanie.

I can tell you, a few friends are rolling their eyes at the number of times I kept changing my mind! ;)

Progress so far…

Nora Corbett's Tigerlily work in progress

Nora Corbett’s Tigerlily work in progress

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Cross Stitch carry pouches

A while ago, Denise from Cross Stitch Take Along Totes starting sharing her designs for a smaller zipped pouch. Designed to store smaller cross stitch projects including 11″ x 11″ Q Snaps, and with a second zippered pocket on the back for threads & accessories, these were an instant hit.

It helped that Denise picked some stunning fabrics… and one particular combination had me salivating. Featuring peacocks with an irridescent gold threaded through them, and a matching blue trim… these pouches were stunning.

Unfortunately, this fabric was limited, and I couldn’t afford to purchase them at the time. Resigned, I accepted I’d probably never own one in this particular fabric.

Then, one Saturday morning, I saw the mailman put a parcel in my post box.

“Odd” I thought. “I wasn’t expecting anything.”

Interest piqued, I made a dash for the mailbox to pick it up. It was a cold morning, and I was dressed in clothes that weren’t fit for polite company (imagine a polar bear!)

Opening the package I saw these…

Golden Peacock cross stitch pouches

Golden Peacock cross stitch pouches

And a wee card with the simple message “You have been RAKed by Mel and Denise!”

Oh my god! I was first in shock, and then humbled beyond words. For them to do such a generous and kind thing for me… ah if they had been there in person, I’d probably have hugged them til they went SQUISH POP! :)

After thanking them both profusely, I put these pouches straight into use. Currently the small one carries my embroidery scissors, laying tool, Thread Heaven, a tube of Permin 28 count gold plated needles and my highlighter. The larger pouch holds a 6″x6″ Q Snap with my current wip.

Construction-wise, these things are sturdy. The workmanship is quality, and I get the feeling that these pouches will take quite a beating before they finally cave.

While the larger cross stitch take along tote is great for big projects, these are ideal for the smaller ones that you can easily tuck away in your work or going-out bag.

If you haven’t checked out Denise’s work, visit her Facebook page and see for yourself how amazing it is!

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