Good grief, time has passed quickly between blog posts! I have been busy finalising our plans for Paris, booking hotels, train tickets etc and I have been working on a home project that has been bugging my for a while, I will post on it later as it is so close to being finished.
A quick update on a post I wrote a few weeks ago, the kids reward system. In my home we have deemed it a success. After both girls had filled their jars for the first time we made some slight adjustments to the value of some chores (for example getting the clothes off the line moved from a small marble to a medium one) to encourage the girls to do some of the chores they don't usually attempt. We also added a few we had forgotten about! If anyone wants to have a look at our completed (at this stage, who knows what we'll think of adding as they get older!) list, please let me know and I will happily send it to you.
For some strange reason Miss 12 had it in her in her head to make a sponge cake earlier this week (here she is working away on it, yes of course in her school uniform, let's get it dirty and give mum more washing!).
And here is the end result.
She did a great job, it was a lovely sponge. She also set the table for a full afternoon tea and invited my mum and dad around to share. What a nice way to spend the afternoon.
We have had a heap of rain lately but this week that combined with some extreme winds so yesterday morning I woke to find this in my front yard.
And a better view as the day dawned. The local fire brigade had come along and taped off our house and the house next door.
So the workers from our local electricity provider came along to clean up the mess.
And they continued to hack away at the tree until this was left
And the amazing part was they did all the sawing, hacking and lopping, as well as bringing in the crane to lift the remainder of the tree off the power lines, while the lines were still live!!! Very brave men indeed.
And yes, this is my front yard, with the retaining walls half finished and the garden beds full of weeds! Unfortunately the walls need to be finished (some of which has to be unbuilt and then rebuilt) before I can get in and get planting. Maybe when we get back from Paris...
Over the last couple of days I have finally gotten around to completing Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games series, a series of books I started several years ago but never got around to finishing (at the time I read the Hunger Games, Catching Fire and Mockingjay hadn't yet been published). And now I am kicking myself that I didn't get around to reading them before now. They are extraordinary. I now some people might not be into reading books written for the Young Adult market, but if you can put this aside, at least for this series, you will not regret it. These books will definitely make my list of top rated books ever.
At this time of the year we have an abundance of citrus fruits, my lemon tree is full to bursting with some branches so heavy with fruit they are dragging on the ground (the photo above is not that tree, instead it is the very straggly dwarf lemon tree I have near the side door). And although they are still a week or two from picking, I find myself with more limes than I know what to do with. So, yesterday I made a Coconut Lime Syrup Cake and it was delicious. Unfortunately it disappeared so quickly I didn't have the opportunity to take a photo of it. C'est la vie!
Rita over at Red Pepper Quilts has a lovely fabric giveaway at the moment, entries close tomorrow so head over there for a chance to win. Her blog is one of my favourite Australian blogs, her quilts are absolutely delightful, I only wish I had half as much talent as she has!
Here is one of the quilts I have made in the past.
This is a quilt I made for (now) Miss 12 a couple of years ago and was the first quilt I had professionally quilted. It was made from a kit from Fat Quarter Shop, the fabric was from Moda's Me and My Sister Designs. A perfectly girly quilt.
I haven't posted anything about what I've made lately so here is a shot of a ruffle scarf I made for Miss 12 a couple of weeks ago. It is one of the easiest patterns I have ever followed and was in a Better Homes & Gardens knitting special a couple of months ago. But there are also lots of similar patterns on Ravelry and the like.
Do you knit? I was taught by my Nanna when I has about 8 or 9 years old and still love to do it. She also taught me to crochet at the same age and I love doing it too. I find I am drawn to these crafts at this time of the year, having a lap full of lovely yarns, colourful and warm, is very soothing. It is also very satisfying seeing something come together quickly. Having said that, I haven't yet been adventurous enough to start something large, like a cardi or a sweater! One day I will though, maybe soon if I find a pattern I love enough.