Monday, August 30, 2021


Nine days ago, when our current lockdown started, I began working on a new project. It's a wall-hanging using Elizabeth Hartman's Greenhouse pattern. The lockdown was meant to last until 2nd September, and I wondered if I could finish the project before the lockdown finished.

Here's where I got to today:

I have also prepared the binding. Now I just need to get quilting!

I'm not sure where this fits into my WOOFA (Working On Or Finishing A ...) plans. It is not something that was hanging around waiting for me to work on it. But having this to do has helped me feel better about this lockdown. I've spent time in my sewing room almost every day, and although it looks likely the lockdown will be extended, I'm still aiming for the original finish date.

Check out Cheryll's WOOFA Party post to see what other people have managed to do this month.

Saturday, August 28, 2021


First butterfly I have seen this spring:

Not a great photo as I couldn't get very close to it. It is an Australian Painted Lady, Vanessa kershawi.

New lambs, born today:

I think the sheep on the left is about to give birth. The one in the middle had twins this morning (the second one is behind her - you can just see its tail).

Empty spool:

The one on the right has taken me 20 months (started in January last year) to work my way through.

I'm using this thread just for piecing, as I didn't have a lot of luck using it for quilting. Today I have started another 3000m spool. 


On the 1st January 2017, we planted a magnolia "Vulcan" which I received for Christmas the week before. Each year since then its flower buds have started, but not properly developed. But this year I've been watching as the buds have swelled up properly, and today the first one has opened:

It is gorgeous! And there are several more to come:

Happy spring! (Even though it doesn't start for another 3 days).

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Growing Things

 The first flower is opening on my Limelight protea:

I just love the colours of this one!


In my sewing room I now have five blocks of the Greenhouse quilt made:

From left to right they are: cactus, jade, flower, aloe, and prickly. I think I want six blocks for the size wall-hanging I have in mind, but these five are the only ones in the pattern. If I repeat one, which one should I do? I'm considering either doing aloe in different colours, or making a cactus that faces the opposite way. What would you do?

Sunday, August 22, 2021

Signs of Spring

 A sunny day with a top temperature of 17.6 C. Spring is in the air!


This is a Turkestan tulip, Tulipa turkestanica:

We have a pot of these beside the front door. There were no flowers this morning, but a few have popped open this afternoon.

Plum blossom, with a small native bee:


Almond blossom:


Daffodils are opening up everywhere:


Grape hyacinths with a European honey bee:


And lastly, my Coral Charm peony is exploding out of the ground:


Spring is definitely on the way!

Saturday, August 21, 2021

New Projects

Yesterday things were a bit different. We could go to shops, and travel around. I went to Bunnings to buy Vermiculite, and came across the last of their mushroom growing kits:

This morning I set it up:
Hopeful that in about 3 weeks it will produce mushrooms:

 I'll let you know if it works.

Then we heard the inevitable, and not unexpected, news that regional Victoria was going back into lockdown from 1pm today. Is this lockdown 7, or is it part of lockdown 6 because 6 is still running in Melbourne? Perhaps it is 6a, or 6.1, or...? With only 2 hours notice, there wasn't time to rush out buying toilet paper (this is a joke), so we went for a walk.

I've decided to devote this lockdown to a new project. Something where if I work on it every day I could finish it before the lockdown ends. Some time in the last couple of years I bought Elizabeth Hartman's Greenhouse pattern:

I'm going to make a wall-hanging version, with just a few of the "plants". After the walk (and a cup of tea) I started work.
One pot made!

Sunday, August 15, 2021

The Garden in August

Spring is on the horizon.

Spring stars:



Cyclamen not quite in focus but it is too late to go out and re-take the photo:

Cymbidium orchid:




The picture above is Viburnum tinus, but blogger won't let me type between it and the camellia.

Sweet little daffodils:

Just a few of the full-sized daffodils are open so far:




Red hot pokers:




Bergenia - and a bee!



And for some reason the rest of these photos are in the opposite order from what I tried to load them in. 

This wattle:


My "Limelight" protea has 7 or 8 flowers forming this year! This one is the closest to opening:


This not-quite-in-focus purple-not-blue anemone is last, but was meant to be further up near the bergenia, because that is where it is actually growing.

There are a few other flowers I didn't photograph - the abutilons and hebes which are always in flower, and the first of the dianthus which I did photograph but the photo was terrible. And I discovered later that the first of the almond blossoms has opened. I'll have to go and look at that in daylight tomorrow.

Friday, August 13, 2021


The last few days have been consumed in gathering up the remnants of my parents' lives, emptying out the unit they have lived in since 2007.

Early in this whole process my sister had told me which pieces of furniture she wanted, so those have remained until now. They consisted of two large armchairs, and a kitchen dresser. She had also put aside a couple of boxes of books and other stuff which she might want. On Wednesday, after prompting from me that very few days were left to us to empty the unit, she and her husband came and took away one of the chairs. Her husband decided that they didn't want the dresser because it was a "piece of junk".

Yesterday I met up with the manager of a local op-shop who had helped me clear out all the kitchen cupboards back in June. She took away a large car-load of saleable items, such as clothing, blankets, and unwanted ornaments.

We loaded all the remaining larger bits and pieces into the ute and brought them to our place:

Including the unwanted kitchen dresser:

This morning I washed it all down, then it came inside to live:

I haven't decided yet what I will put in the top section behind the glass doors, but some of my houseplants can call it home, and the cupboards and drawers are useful storage spaces.


This afternoon I took (what I would like to be) my last trip to the unit. I packed my car up with the very last of the kipple, and threw into the rubbish bin various things which could not be disposed of otherwise.

I would like to say that the unit is now empty, but there is an armchair and a couple of boxes of books and other stuff that my sister "might want" still inside!

I left her a note which said, "If there are things here that you don't want, could you please dispose of them yourself? I feel like I have done enough."

Monday, August 9, 2021


Daily walks are important during lockdowns. Each day I look for something to add to iNaturalist while out and about.

On Friday I saw this small-leafed clematis:


On Saturday I found that scented sundews had started flowering on our block:

On Sunday I discovered a patch of nodding greenhood orchids:

Today we took a drive to the edge of our 5km limit, to see if the Lal Lal Falls were flowing well after our recent rainy days:

They were!

The dogs enjoyed some off-lead running around:

And I found some pretty coloured fungi of unknown species:

Today regional Victoria were told our lockdown is ending early at midnight tonight! I'm very thankful, as it gives me some extra time to finish emptying my parents' place. That is a great relief as I really didn't know how I was going to manage it.

I'm sorry for my friends in Melbourne still in lockdown, and particularly sorry for people in Sydney who have already done over a month of lockdown without any sign that their outbreak is being controlled.