Tuesday, September 30, 2008

When in Rome....

....take lots of photos! Unfortunately I haven't been there but my favourite son Cass (okay, he's my only son) has just returned from an international architecture summer school there. These are some of the photos he took of places he visited- sorry I don't know where they are.
They sure knew how to make fancy buildings in those days.

And the frescoes....

...even on the ceilings. Amazing stuff. Art wasn't about pickled animal parts and unmade beds in those days.
Postscript - Cass has told me that the first photo is St Peter's Basilica, and the others are from the Vatican Museum.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Daylight saving and Nature's art

Today is the start of Daylight Saving, so it's always a bit unsettling. As a morning person, I find it hard to go back to waking in the dark. It's a magnificent day, however, so I can't complain. The camera hasn't been able to capture just how deep and beautiful the colour is on this Freesia. It's a really dark rich colour in real life.
I love the Corydalis with its pale blue flowers and ferny foliage.
The ground cover out the front is in full flower. Soon all the Hostas will be up.
Even the ordinary plants, like prostate Rosemary with Grape Hyacinths in front look wonderful.

Friday, September 26, 2008

NZ Quilt Symposium abd other gems

If you're a quilter, you may want to consider coming to this - New Zealand's national quilting symposium, held every 2 years. The next one is Easter next year. There'll be all sorts of exciting and interesting classes and tutors. ...
...oh, and also this person (you may need to click on the photo for a closer view).
For many years, I've nursed a Hippeastrum bulb which has finally flowered. To my surprise, it's white - they are more often red. That's my "kitchen garden" you can see - why waste good bench space when you can have plants on it?
And we haven't had a gratuitous cute animal photo for a while, so here are the dogs being twins.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

10,000 down...

I didn't have a sitemeter for some time, but since installing one, I see that I've just passed the 10,000 visitors mark. I am amazed. Hooray! Vive les blogreaders! Thanks to all of you who come here and read my blog, and keep coming back, and special thanks to those who leave comments, as we bloggers LOVE comments and feedback.

(Note to self - get out and about more in the blogworld and leave more comments of my own).

And for no other reason than I like it, here's a photo of what used to be Town Hall in Rangiora (the town I live in) which is now a theatre (with a stage) downstairs and also a wee movie theatre upstairs. A town that paints its theatre purple is okay with me.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Warning - contains asterisks

Indeed. It also contains some good advice.

I've been a bad blogger lately - not so much for not posting, but more for not visiting and commenting on others' blogs. Sorry.

I also do not have a creative bone in my body at present. The well is dry. I can't get enthused over anything fibre-related.

I'm not sure where my head is exactly. I haven't watched TV for the past week as I find all the political news so boring. My job bores me. The garden still holds appeal. Sigh.

Meantime, the Evil Twin has been on Amazon again. I'm...errr..uh....SHE is a sucker for brightly coloured crochet.
Maybe this will help the lack of creativity?
In the meantime, I defer to Mother Nature, who has no problems with producing something lovely. And far better to look at than pickled animal parts.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Is this art?

UK artist Damien Hirst has just auctioned 200 or so of his controversial works for $300 million. He likes to dice and pickle animals, but sometimes he just pickles them whole. Or in bits. Pickled cow in formaldehyde, anyone?

Is this something you'd want in your living room? Is this ART?

Personally I think it's sick.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Serenity is....

...sitting on the deck in the Spring sunshine...........watching a dog with a bone. It takes so little to make a dog happy. And while I'm having my coffee.....
...finding an upturned plant pot that makes a perfect cup holder. As I sip my drink, I look around at the wonders of spring growth....
...the orchids starting to flower on the deck. These are hardy Australian Dendrobiums that can take the cold. But not the frosts - no orchids can tolerate frost. Snow, yes, but not frost. Some plants are already in flower....
..the grape hyacinths are doing well in the rock garden out the front ......
...and so is the little Magnolia Stellata, while around the side of the house....
...the dwarf peach tree is in full bloom. And out by the front fence....
...a perfect camellia.

These are things that are giving me serentity at present - what is making YOU feel serene?

PS My apologies to readers only interested in fiber arts - these are on the back burner for now.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Spring fever

Yesterday was a beautiful spring day. There was snow on the mountains that I can see from upstairs....
..down below, I even put the sun umbrella up so I could sit out on the deck to have my coffee. Note all the plants. And a poodle who just has to be in the act.
Inside, my seedlings are flourishing.
I've been playing with modular knitting. I like this kind - you only have to knit half the squares!
And I'm making myself a lacy scarf from some very fine merino wool.
When the mood strikes me, I'm also starting to knit the sleeves on this merino cardigan. They will have the long rib and cable parts on them too.
And for the piece de resistance - I spent some hours yesterday weeding the vegetable garden, then filling the no-dig gardens with their soil less mix, planting out the strawberries, lettuces, herbs and red onions, and then putting more barley straw down on the rest of the garden. In the foreground you can see the silverbeet on the left,with the large red onions and the fennel at the front. Further back on the right are some blackcurrant canes heeled in while they grow roots. I'm planning to grow things all over those bare fences, but that will take at least another season to achieve.

I love spring.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

And the winner is.....

(drum roll puh-leeze....) ....Janet !

Here's the finished hat from the side.....
...and from the top. I love the way the shaping produces the spiral pattern.

I hope some of you were inspired to do a random act of kindness too.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Random Acts Of Kindness Day

Today is Random Acts Of Kindness day, so here's my RAOK. I am going to give the not-quite-finished hat in the photo to someone. That someone could be you! All you have to do is leave a comment asking to go into the draw. Then I'll pull a name out of the hat (maybe literally!) and the hat will be yours. No matter where you live in the world.

There are 75 people a day looking at this blog (not that you'd know it from the comments <>), so put your hat into the ring (lots of hat puns today) if you'd like it for yourself or for someone you know. The hat is made of 100% wool, hand dyed by moi. It will fit an average woman's head.

Now YOU go and do a RAOK!