Sunday, 27 January 2013


Making slows down in summer, outdoors rule, my craft room has become a dumping ground - not much has come out this year so far.

A simple scrappy pillowcase

Shed time with Dad is a more attractive option at the moment.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

The Magic of Six

Georgie turned 6 last week, I worked on her birthday so we celebrated it in the weekend with a small party. Somewhere in the summer holiday mode amongst party planning, work and swimming lessons - blogging fell to the bottom of the list.

Her new watch and the set of girls lego we gave her are a hit.

(Note attentive father in background sleeping )

I spent a bit of time cruising the net for birthday ideas - as you do - and saw a very cool idea on Kelle's blog - Enjoying the small things.  I thought about it for a while - would I disappoint her when she discovered we put it there? But then I don't recall being disappointed to discover the father Christmas secret or the tooth fairy or any of those parts of my childhood and nor do my siblings or my husband. Make belief is the magic of childhood and six is getting close to the age that the magic can disappear for some children. I know from the conversations on other blogs that not everyone agrees with this but we decided in our house that magic will still exist.

So on her birthday morning , Georgie discovered this little door in the wall.
With a note and a birthday present.

And magic it is, she tells me she thought she saw a fairy wing disappear behind a bush this morning - she is smitten.  The fairies left a fun puzzle too.

Our timing was good, we have since been to see the movie "Rise of the Guardians" , much to her delight the tooth fairy was in it.

The Party theme was also based on another great kids movie "Brave" - I like that Merida.

As with all our best birthday cakes - our friend Wendy made it - great huh.
We kept the party simple, just one game - pass the parcel with a small gift for each child and we made some bow and arrows.

All credit to Lier at Ikatbag for the idea and instructions. We used a blackboard with a target drawn on it. Actually for most of the kids these were a bit of a challenge but the parents had fun.

That's an "apple " on Wendy's head - haha.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Good things

I discovered a couple of good things recently I thought I'd share

1. washing balls

I purchased these from after doing a bit of reading about them. ( in case you are  wondered - no sponsorship , just things I like)  You just chuck 1 or 2 of them in the machine depending on the size of the load.  Based on the estimates from the website I think I will save almost $150 NZ a year on washing powder.  So far they have been great - no powder marks on the clothes  and even quite dirty mountain bike gear comes out clean. I thought they might rattle around in the machine a bit but they don't seem to.

I bought the started kit which came with the stain remover and a refill for the ball , stain remover seemed to work pretty well too. I think I'm sold on these .

2. Smooze ice blocks ( Coconut milk and fruit ice blocks with no artificial colours or flavours - dairy free, plus a whole lot of other stuff . I try to make our iceblocks but sometimes just don't get around to it so I bought a pack of these the other day.  The come in packs of 10 mini blocks which has a pretty decent shelf life and you just freeze them when you get home.  We got the mango flavour and they have been a hit, so I plan to keep some in our freezer for summer.  ( I got ours from a local food distributor , I am guessing they will be in main supermarkets too.

3. Labonic sunblock  (  I have been looking for ages for a good "natural " sunblock.  I am very aware that I slather sunblock on my daughters fair skin in large quantities over summer and the standard ones seem to be drying out her skin .Also when I did a bit of reading about the content I was keen to find one without parabens, retinyl palmitate amoungst other things. The few I have tried just haven't been effective until now.  This is an spf 30 and I really like it, when you first rub it on it seems quite thick and greasy but after a few minutes it is all absorbed and with no residue evident on the skin surface.  It seems effective so far although I have only used it this past week.  The down side is the tubes are quite small - 50mls so I imagine we will go through a few. They make a stick and a roll on so I thought I would try the roll on as imagine this will be good for putting in my handbag etc.

Skinnies sunblock ( is also really good spf30 sunblock and really nice to put on, goes a long way and works well. It does contain avobenzone but other than that ingredients seem all pretty good.

I've also tried Oasis Sun and natural instinct sunblocks  which were both ok but I found them a bit greasy and harder to apply on my 5 yr old with a big dislike for any skin cream. They also left quite a white residue which I didn't really like either.  Although my oasis one is near expiry date so the new ones may be better.  I have to say the skinnies one is by far the easiest and most pleasant to apply but I like the feel of the labonic one a lot too.

Hope you find something in this mini product review useful - I know a bit of a random post in the midst of my usual craft rantings.

Friday, 11 January 2013

Footwear Friday

My weekly installment of shoes: leave a link in the comments if you want to join in.

Birkenstocks : this pair is an old favourite and well worn , I have a number of pairs or Birkenstocks - my favourite summer sandles>

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Summer love

Loving the summer :

Days with no plans
Hanging out with my girl
Sleeping in
No school lunches to make
Washing dries within an hour on the line
Afternoons spent paddling in the lake
Trips on  a steamship
Riding bikes
Summer Stone Fruit
Hanging out with friends

Not enjoying:

daily sunblock on squirming child
resort town's crowded supermarkets
bad driving everywhere you go
lists of chores in the back of my mind
heading to work on beautiful days
blogger not uploading my photos unless I use HTML - not enjoying!

Friday, 4 January 2013

Footwear Friday

I like shoes. I have lots of them. Most I wear although  some only occasionally.

So footwear Friday is my version of Wardrobe Wednesday. Each Friday I'm going to post a picture of a pair of my shoes -like I said I like shoes - so if you want to join in and post a pic of yours leave a link in the comments please do.

And here is Week 1 of Footwear Friday:

This is a pair of Briarwood wedges. I bought them for a wedding a couple of years ago, I think I have worn them twice. They aren't that high but with only that strap at the front holding them on, not great for long walks.
Still I love the colour and they are surprisingly comfortable to wear ( if only for standing around in!)



Thursday, 3 January 2013


The new year came with rain - lots of it - 48 hours non stop - we were starting to get cabin fever.
This morning we woke to sunshine but the weather was still a bit temperamental with snow low down on the hills around us and temperatures to match. Fresh and not very summery. We made the most of a clear spell this afternoon and went for a big walk - something in my plan below  - get outside more.

We did a little making, mostly for small girl entertainment - a combined effort on a slightly wonky story mat and a bag for story cards.

And I made plans. 2013 plans. Not really a resolution but a big list of the things I want to do.  I won't bore you with the complete long list but these were a few things :

-Finish chair for georgie's art table
- Paint our fence
- Do a photography course
- Make a feliz dress for Georgie
- organise a girls craft weekend away
- complete 2011 and 2012 photo albums
- spend more time outside

Essentially it is all those random " to do " things floating around in my brain which I put down on paper.  My idea is to try to do one of these things each week, obviously some will span many weeks but as long as I am doing something on the list that's cool. It's thoughts in progress . I still haven't decided how to improve my fitness ,other than getting outside, and I expect my list to change over the year. But a plan, no matter how vague , feels good.

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Making Plans

Do you make new years resolutions?

I like the new year , it feel like a fresh start - much like Monday mornings.

Last year I mulled over what I wanted out of 2012 and never really came up with a plan.  I sort of ambled my way through 2012, did a lot of making , work stuff, the odd holiday and here we are on the last day of 2012.

Now my head is whirring, I have lots of ideas for 2013 - too many to fit in around work and everyday life stuff.  My work schedule is changing from regular days to blocks of more intense work - I think better because I get bigger blocks of time between work stints.

I know generally what I want for 2013
- A white Christmas ( maybe dreaming about this one)
- to get fitter ( no plan in 2012 made for all time poor fitness level!)
- more organised - ha I think this every year
-  to do a photography course

I've also been thinking about my blog - I started it as motivation to do more making, it's worked but now I'm not sure where it fits in my life.  I like to read other peoples blogs and so it feels right in return that I  write something, even if I only have a very small following. I partly write as a record of my making and Georgie's growing up . My blog also keeps me accountable - when I say I will do something there is more motivation to do so.

"Adventure is just bad planning" and " Victory awaits him who has everything in order - luck people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck" Roald Amundsen - Antartic Adventurer ( 1872 - 1928)

Tonight I'm going to sleep on these thoughts and tomorrow make a plan.