Wednesday, 23 February 2011

The Earthquake

Some of you will have heard of the huge and devastating earthquake in Christchurch.   Although this is far away from where I live, in a small country like NZ we are never far from connections.   My relatives are all safe but for some of them their homes are damaged.  Thank you for all the good wishes and prayers you have been sending my way.   We sure need them at this time.
The beautiful stone cathedral at the centre of the city, to which my forebears donated the exquisite carved wood baptismal font, has lost its spire and the search and rescue teams have lost hope of finding survivors in the rubble that was the viewing tower.   It is all such a sad sad story.

Photo taken from NZ Herald
And just to let you know that the QBHDEM is tonight staying in the Coronary Care Unit of Auckland Hospital.   They are investigating a suspected heart attack and I am thankful she is in the good hands of the cardiology team there.   Your prayers and good wishes would be much appreciated.
I doubt there will be much stitching here tonight -  the accumulation of crises has drained my energy.   And so Good Night to all.

Monday, 21 February 2011

Progress Reports

Good evening everyone.
Progress Report Number One:   Mother's first eye surgery went well and here is a snapshot (taken very much against her will!) to prove the point.   One ear is yellow with iodine and of course one eye is covered with a white patch but otherwise all is well.  Many thanks to you all for your good wishes and prayers - from both QBHDEM and me!

Progress Report Number Two:   The Historic Countries Sampler has officially left The Netherlands.   Several times while in that country the "frogs" came to visit but persistence paid off and that section is now complete - well apart from the gap left to put the date I finish this piece.   Instead of some random date selected from family history I opted to rechart that section to put the start date and (one day) finish date.   The blue triangle portion at the lower left is the first of the Spanish section which appears to be smaller and less complicated than the Dutch section.   Here's hoping!   (Hopefully this picture should be clickable)

Progress Report Number Three:   Stash Enchancement!   While Mother was in the gentle hands of the Opthalmologist I paid a visit to The Ribbon Rose and found a beautiful piece of white linen for my planned Pulled Thread piece, also some needles and a DMC I need to finishe my Christmas Prism.   What was most gratifying was my loyalty card was full and meant I received $25 off the price.   Oh Happy Day!
The linen is for a piece of Pulled Thread work by designer Marie Helene Jeanneau.   I learned about this design from Giovanna's Stitches and Point Passion managed to send me the order within three days -  a super fast journey from France to New Zealand.   Such amazing service!  You can see the work in progress on Giovanna's blog here.

So all in all a very successful day at Chez Nous!   Have a great evening everyone.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

WARNING - this post contains CHOCOLATE!

Hello everyone.   It has been a while since I posted and I continue to stitch on the Historic Countries Sampler.   At present I am in the Holland section and have just completed a "giant" boat -  this is relative of course.  The whole sampler is quite a giant!   Hopefully this weekend Holland will be finished and I plan on having a short break to stitch a small gift for a friend.

In between the crosses, I made this apron which the HDHBEM kindly modelled for me.   She was really shy this time:-)

And now for a complaint.   At Christmas Mother gave me this tin of chocolates - "I know you will love the tin dear, even if you don't eat the contents."  

At that stage I had strong resolve and put the tin away waiting for a time when others would eat the contents for me.   Such a large tin =  so many chocolates = would be great for a plate when I am rostered on tea time at church.  

So last Sunday I was on the roster and I opened the tin of chocolates -  well!   What a disappointment!   Wouldn't you feel cheated if you only got less than half a tin full!  

We won't be buying these again, tin or no tin!
Next week the HDHBEM has the cataract removed from her right eye and will then become the QuarterBlindHalfDeafElderlyMother (QBHDEM) and will be very happy!  At present we put in drops morning and night and live with the anticipation of success (even though the opthalmologist said the macular degeneration will mean limited improvement).   I will have the day off to take her to the hospital and collect her again three hours later -  and what a blessing, the hospital is only a few minutes walk from the needlework shop.  How fortuitous- I will love having my mind preoccupied with stitching treasures during the wait:-)
Have a great evening everyone.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Oh dear oh dear - a diet breaker of a package

It was only on Monday that Sonoko told me she had sent a package and this morning the courier driver rang the bell and delivered the goodies.   How quickly that travelled -  NZ Post should take some lessons from Japan Post.   And what a lot of goodies there were!   Two cute teddy bears nursing small packages of ----yes! Chocolates.    Two tiny tote bags containing ---- yes!   Chocolates.   The red package contained two smaller white packages which contained two beautiful pairs of gloves and two handkerchiefs.   And the pink tote bag in the front? ---- yes!   More chocolates.

Japanese retailers must be the Kings of Wrapping.   Let me give you a pictorial explanation.  

Inside this beautiful coordinated tote bag, was a wonderful round box (can you see this with some embroidery on top  - once the contents are eaten of course)

the tissue paper was folded into soft symmetrical  folds,

Under that was a small card detailing the flavours of the contents.   Under the card a padded wax paper disc to protect the delicate contents and so eventually after five layers all was revealed....... these!  

Too good to eat do I hear you say?   Well all the other chocolates will be eaten first.   These special ones will be kept for a day or two so I can enjoy their beauty and Mother can decide which she will eat as the instructions sent by Sonoko are that I must share !!   Thankyou so much for the surprise Sonoko.  

Monday, 7 February 2011

Progress Report HCS 5

Hello everyone -  life has been a little busy and consequently 'blog-less' this week.   But I do have some progress to show you.   This is the first band of the Holland portion of the Historic Countries Sampler.  It is rather more colourful than I had expected but the colours all work well together.   I am really enjoying this project.

I've also done side one of the Faith Hope and Charity Christmas Prism.   The fabric is a scrap of Lugana I had in my stash and DMC threads from my stock.   Somehow I doubt that I have a suitable fabric for the lining but as construction is a long way off I will leave that decision till later.

The blue cotton top is complete and has been "road tested".   I am more than pleased with both the colour and the fit.   Here it is with the skirt which provided the necessity for a top.   The garment took three balls less than expected and the wonderful lady at Wild and Woolly agreed to swap the excess for other yarn and Mother now has a new pattern and the yarn for her next Charity Creation.   Satisfaction all round!
Well good night all.   I'm off to do my evening chores.