Monday, June 29, 2015

Saturday, June 27, 2015

At the Beach

Since Monday Dot has been allowed to go for walks outside, but this was her first experience of being off the leash:
She stood still for a moment, then followed Jack's lead and took off.
 She had a good time exploring this new environment.
Getting her back wasn't the easiest task, though!

Friday, June 26, 2015


Jack and Dot enjoy some rawhide chews:
They both like the stairs, and for now, Jack gets to sit on a higher step than Dot. I don't know if it will stay that way; Dot may end up bigger and pushier than Jack.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Shed Slab

I wasn't up early enough to see the concrete pour. They were planning to start before the sun even got up.
So all I saw was lots of helicoptering and trowelling. That seemed to go on way longer than necessary. We had brought the dogs along so that they could run across the wet concrete, but after it had been worked for so long, it was hard for them to make an impression once we finally got the chance:

Meanwhile the builders have begun wrapping the house with an insulation layer:

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Roof Done

It was all go at the block today. The roof was finished, the shed site was prepared for the concrete pour tomorrow, some wood was chopped and stacked, and some little branches were burnt rather scarily!

Another sheet of roofing is lifted up:
Almost done:
It's a roof!

Shed slab preparation:

Eucalyptus wood "bleeding" red liquid after it is cut:
This gummy liquid gives gum trees their common name. Apparently it is actually called "Kino", and the tree produces it in response to an injury. You might notice in the photo that it is coming from a hollow space a couple of centimetres below the bark.

Here's why it is now too late to set fire to the huge pile of roots and branches created when the house site was cleared:
Flames from a very small fire of twigs and leaves, shooting up many metres. Imagine that times a thousand. It's a scary prospect.

Look what happened just after the roof was finished:
Rain! Little spouts of water flew off the roof at odd intervals. You might see one at the far end in this shot. But I kept missing them with the camera. Soon the gutters will be installed and connected to the tank so that we'll be catching that water.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Roofing Starts

The first sheet of roofing steel is lifted on to the roof.

The structure the roof is going on:
Engineered to wind rating N4. The builder asked if he could come and stay at our place if a cyclone ever hits Ballarat!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Christmas Lunch

Christmas in June (or July) has always struck me as being a rather wacky idea, but today I actually attended one with Ballaarat Quilters, and it was fun. It was also good to eat that roasted food on a cold day!

Table set:
Tree decorated:
The tree ornaments we had all made were wrapped and hung on the tree. We each took a turn to choose a gift from the tree, but there was a certain amount of "theft" of gifts involved in the process, so it was better not to get too attached to the first one you received. Here's the one I ended up with:
Isn't it lovely? It doubles as an ornament and a bookmark. It is beautifully made.

Friday, June 19, 2015


The house now has its steel fascia applied, which outlines the roof area nicely:
Front entrance area above, back verandah below.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Christmas in June

I made this today:
It still needs some stuffing, but I think my bag of fibrefill is at the other house. My quilting guild are having a "Christmas in June" day on Saturday, and everyone has to bring a hand-made ornament for the tree.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Tree Delivery

Time to say good-bye to the TreeProject seedlings:
All packed into the car before being dropped off in Northcote. They will be going to Nulla Vale in central Victoria to be planted out very soon.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Daiso Quilting Gloves?

I recently came across these "Fit Coated Gloves" in Daiso, the amazing Japanese shop where everything is $2.80:
They looked an awful lot like the Machingers quilting gloves that cost $15 a pair, so I thought it was worth $2.80 to check them out. There were 4 different sizes, so I bought the largest. There is some info about the size on the bottom left of the package, but I didn't have a tape measure handy to compare the size of my hand, and I wasn't entirely sure what the measurements referred to. Anyone like to guess what the "9.0 cm" relates to?

They have some interesting English instructions on the back of the package. They are apparently suitable for picking fruit or vegetables:
No mention of quilting, though.

They feel the same as the Machingers gloves. The packet says they are polyester and nylon, with a polyurethane "non slip" coating. Machingers say they are 100% nylon with polyurethane coating. So maybe not exactly the same fabric, but they definitely feel similar.

Here they are side by side:
Size "LL" Daiso glove on the left, size "XL" Machinger glove on the right. They are sitting on a mat with a 1cm grid, so you can compare the sizes.

I probably should have got the second-largest size ("L") Daiso glove - these ones are slightly loose, instead of being quite snug like the Machingers. The main difference between the two is where the coating is. Machingers have only the finger-tips coated, whereas the Daiso gloves have one side completely coated. But at less than a fifth of the price, I don't think the coated palm would be a problem!

Next time I am in town I will buy myself a pair of the size "L" for comparison. Then maybe I will stock up on a few pairs for the future when I am nowhere near a Daiso shop!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Verandah Posts

Our verandah posts are now vertical! Here's the verandah at the front entrance:

Some of that yellow timber is there as scaffolding for the carpenters to stand on. It will be open from roof to ground-level when it is all done.

Here's the back verandah:
A little work still to be done to finish this one. The posts will be trimmed to the same height eventually. But it is looking like the house is almost ready for its roof.

We spent a bit of time yesterday and today cutting and stacking wood around the cleared area, but I didn't photograph any of that. We were hoping the CFA would get to us this weekend to burn the off-cut branches and roots, but maybe that will happen next weekend now. On Saturday we also went shopping for kitchen appliances, which was fun, and we got some good deals in end-of-financial-year sales. Now we just need a kitchen to install them in.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Gravel, Water and Polar Fleece

Delivery of the final gravel to finish the tank. In case they came when we weren't there, we told them to unload the gravel on the painted sign:

Unfortunately we weren't there when the delivery arrived. This photo was taken later. You might notice that the gravel is not actually on the sign.  They dumped it about 6 metres away, which means it will all have to be moved at some point.

The builder has started pressure-washing the bricks:
He is washing them with just water (no acid), and I think they are looking pretty good.

Last night at bedtime I realised Dot would not fit into the pyjamas I made her just a couple of weeks ago. Her body is close to 10cms longer and 10cms further around now, so I had to do some quick cutting and stitching. Here she is this morning, snug as a bug:

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Busy Day at the Block

Scruff's grave now has a lemon-scented teatree:

Planted this morning, grown from seed from the tree in my old garden.

The house now has its roof trusses:
View of the loungeroom area (and sewing room through the wall frame).

Today's main event involved that never-ending gravel that actually was finished while I was sick at home last weekend. Bright and early two guys and a truck arrived and began to assemble our water tank on that gravel:
 About three hours later, and after removing some layers of clothing, they finished it:
 Just in time for a delivery of 15,000 litres of water:
The tank holds nearly 80,000 litres, but this delivery is so it won't blow away before it is connected up to collect water from our roof. And would you believe we now have to put some more gravel around the base of the tank? We need 10mm of blue metal around the tank to prevent erosion and deter rodents from digging around the base. Yes, the never-ending gravel is still not quite done.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Thrills and Spills

This is why it is good to have two young dogs:

And why two young dogs should sleep well tonight!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Macaw for June

Here's my completed Zoo Animals block for this month:
The little white twinkle in his eye faces backwards on the pattern, but I got myself a little confused when I was working out which colour went where on this section:
In fact one piece got sewn three times, because I sewed it crooked the first time, got it right the second time, then realised it was the wrong colour fabric so had to pull it out again. But only two other pieces had to be sewn twice, so I'm getting better!

Linking to Quiet Play so you can see the rest of the flock of macaws. Or get the pattern for yourself, because it is free for this month.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Lying Around

This is how the dogs and I have spent the last couple of days:

Friday, June 5, 2015


I was planning to go with a friend to check out GJ's new location today, but I have managed to get a cold somehow and don't feel like doing much but sitting around feeling icky. I made a start on this month's Zoo Animals block, but this is all I have to show so far:
Congratulations if you can work out what that is without checking the Quiet Play blog!