24 July 2015

In the studio and around the home

Lately, we have been eating lots of greens.  Not just salad, I mean.  Spinach with meat and rice (that spinach is from our balcony garden), Mlukheye (wild leaves that we boil with chicken to make a soupy dish that the kids love with rice too), stuffed zucchini, okra with onions and tomato sauce... I love looking into my fridge and seeing all those vivid greens and reds and yellows. 

Last night D went on a bike ride with the little ones.  All three of them.  Doesn't sound like a big deal until you've tried to corral three energetic monkeys on bikes going helter-skelter up hills and around streets.  Nerve-wracking for a parent.  D is as cool as a cucumber.  He offers to take them all so I can have a breather.  Do the dishes in peace.  Finish freezing some extra herbs or berries.  Maybe sit down for a minute and play a tune on the new piano.

We got a new keyboard.  It's not a true piano, but I have a hunch that isn't far behind.  There's only so much you can do with a keyboard, and pedalling is not one.  :)  However, space is an issue here, so keyboard it is for now.  The kids love it and have been begging for "lessons".  Oh yes, little ones, you shall indeed have those!

We went to the petting zoo this past weekend.  The kids love animals, so of course they loved walking around.  Favourites were the deer, the ponies and the bunny rabbits.  And the ducks.  Can't forget the ducks.

There is something about summer work that is pleasant.  Perhaps I am finding it so because D is there to help out in the evenings often, which leaves me a bit of space to plan or execute tricky details.  Or perhaps it's just that time of year and it feels right for this kind of work.  Can't wait till we get in some cucumbers for the pickles!  Perhaps next week...

There are lots of projects happening around here.  Yarn, fabric, wood, food, and music.  Everything that makes life beautiful!  The quilt is almost done.  I stayed up late sewing last night and now I only have the binding left.  I love this simple, rustic style.  It's just a mishmash of old fabrics sewn together in strips - not particularly neatly either.  It just works though.  The kids keep begging me to finish it so they can use it.  I am not sure if I shall leave it for the kids, or keep it as a Christmas gift for a certain special someone, who shall remain nameless.  Perhaps I'll just have to do another one.  And that, my friends, is a happy thought to be sure.  :)

This is a photo of that pink baby sweater.  As you can see, it is now close to completion.  I picked out some sweet wooden buttons with carved flowers on them.  And I have some simple white ones also.  I will probably keep the wooden ones for the grey sweater and use the white for this pink one.  I think.  We'll see when all is said and done.  By the way, most of the progress on this sweater came during morning swimming lessons!  Despite having all the kids with me, even little S, I managed to get at least a couple of rows per day.  Not too shabby.  Now that lessons are finished for the summer, knitting progress may slow.  Especially with all the other projects.  

I am hoping to get back into some iconography before baby arrives, so I have been preparing a few boards these past couple of weeks.  Two of them didn't turn out so well being older, and the gesso wasn't sanding smoothly.  So when the kids asked for their own boards, I was only too happy to oblige.  And they were thrilled!  As you can see, they have their own artistic style.  :)  I am hoping they will agree to a project where we can write a beautiful quote on their boards together, maybe with stencils or something like that.  Then they can give them as gifts, or keep them should they be so inclined.  (Usually I find they like to give away the things they make.  Bless their little hearts!)  

Anyhow.  That's quite an update for me.  Life hasn't been all rosy and gay.  We all have struggles alongside the joys.  In fact, these past two weeks have been particularly trying for some reason.  I find though, that even just a little handiwork is the best medicine for the blues.  Truly.  So, I've been taking as much of that pill as possible.  As you can see!  Hopefully next week there will be some kitchen updates - I do love sharing what's happening in the kitchen!

Happy weekending to you!


  1. Sounds like summer is rolling along just fine in your part of the world :) Reece had swimming lessons last week, and I knit away while he was in the pool. He has another week in August, and you can bet I will be knitting. Your quilt looks amazing! Maybe you can stopped by my place and give me a few pointers :)

    Your little baby bump is beautiful :) And a pink baby sweater...are you telling us something?

    Have the most wonderful weekend, hope you stay cool, it's suppose to be a hot one.

    1. Kim, it's a dear wish of mine to make it out to your place. I think Yanic might be a better lady to go to for pointers though. She made a beautiful doll-sized quilt, just gorgeous! I have yet to learn to freestyle quilt properly - so far I've just been doing straight up and down lines.

      As for the sweater, I have a beautiful grey one I'm working on too. Trying to cover my bases. :) If we don't have a girl, a dear friend of mine will be delivering a girl shortly after me... it'll make a nice gift, I think.

      I hope you have a nice weekend too! Lots of watermelon and homemade popsicles!

  2. You (and all yours) have been busy bees! So much goodness being created. Your quilt looks so plush and comfy. I would keep the quilt. For someone who has been quilting for a few years now and has only recently started making things for her own home, I wish I had kept my first piece. Not because I regret giving it away, but because it was my first and a picture just doesn't quite cut it. Plus, quilt + new baby = perfect floor mat! :-)

    Take care of yourself and have a lovely week. x

    1. Thanks for advice. I hadn't thought about it like that, but it makes sense. There are many things I wish I'd kept (or at least photographed!) over the years. I am happy with how it turned out and I am now moving on to another quilt! By the way, what sewing machine do you use? I am looking into a proper machine, something that I can freehand quilt on as well.