Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Girl4 and Patchwork Therapy

I am glad yesterday is over.  What a sad day for me. I hope girl3 wasn't missing me nearly as much as I was missing her last night.   I know she had some habits that needed to be sorted though and it is for the best so she can do a good job when she graduates soon.  Still missing her though.

Girl4 moved in today.  Her trainer said she is full of energy but she will calm down once she settles in.  After he left, all I could think was that I felt like I had a bumblebee buzzing around.   She was checking everything out at warp speed and of course there were fresh doggy scents everywhere.
She finally stopped moving after I fed her tonight :) 
                                  She is the smallest girl  so far.  She also loves that bone.

             When I said "aww, you love your bone" , she picked it up right away.  LOL.

I really needed some patchwork therapy, so I finished sewing what whirligig pieces were made so far.
Lesson learned....always make a test block when you see a tutorial online.  I now have 18 blocks to trim down and a waste of fabric that could have been avoided if I had made a test block first.

They are off by 1/2 inch.        :(            I am happy with the colours though.

I also worked on the two Blankets of  Love that I will be sending to Cheryll.

The top print is sailboats for a boy and the bottom print is princesses and cupcakes for a girl. The colour isn't so great since these are night pictures with flash.

Thank you for the really sweet messages yesterday.  Virtual hugs are good. xx debbie

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Tissues, Please...

A whole case of tissues would be good.  Sunday was a fun day.  There were a dozen or so of us brissy blogging  girls meeting to stitch, eat, and enjoy some smiles.   I always look forward to this day out.  I booked girl3 for daycare on the day, since I am not allowed to leave her home alone for more than 3 hours.  She was SO sleepy when we collected her at the end of the day!  I fed her and she put herself to bed early, but little did we know what was to come...

(this photo is not girl3, just one that looks a lot like her)
I know ahead of time that I don't get to keep these foster dogs,  BUT Girl 3 was meant to live with me until August 1st.  When her trainer came to pick her up for work Monday morning,  she asked me as she always does, "Are there any issues"?  So, just being honest, I did mention that girl3 loves to find sticks and chew on them in the back  yard and also bring them inside.  I also said she doesn't come when I call her and that she vomited in the house after chewing sticks on Saturday.
Oh, how I regret telling her about the sticks.  I wish I never said anything at all!
So, Monday afternoon, I got two calls, one from her trainer and one from my usual contact person.
Her trainer said they are having issues with her doing as she is told as well, so they want her to go live back at the kennels to watch her more closely.  She is so close to graduation, they want to get her "hoarding" issues sorted out. Not sounding good... They assured me it is nothing I did wrong. *tears*
It has been so cold here, down to single digits at night.  I have been covering the girl once she settles in and she doesn't move after that.
I really love this girl. She is my favourite by far.  We have lots of cuddles when she gets home from work .  She has such a sweet and gentle personality.
This morning, she watched me wash her bowl and collect her belongings.  I think she looks so sad in this picture, but how could she know she won't be coming back?
This is my very last picture of her.  I had an appointment today but I have cancelled it to stay home and cry as much as I need to.  Girl3, I will miss you so much tonight and I hope you won't be too sad and confused that you don't get to come home to me later.  You are the best girl so far! Every time I think you will  have to sleep in the kennel  tonight, and you won't be coming home, then I cry again :(
Darn sticks!

xx Debbie
the second call was from my contact person, asking me if I will take a new girl tomorrow.  So, I will only be one night alone.  I do hope the new girl will cheer me up because today is so sad :(

Monday, 17 June 2013

Travelling Treasures , Quilt Along

Jenny at has received her Travelling Treasures parcel from dear Melody,  decided what she would like to keep,  and also added a few new goodies.  You can see pictures on her blog.   Wow, the parcel has changed SO much since I posted the first one.  It is very interesting to watch it evolve.... Jenny  has announced her winner as Debra at   . I have emailed Debra to congratulate her on her win and we should see a new winner coming sometime in the first week of July, good luck!

The girl went to work this morning.  No puddles, yay!  I did set the alarm to let her out earlier this morning  and also let her out later last night too.  Just have to remember they are each different.

It was our first weekend together and she stayed very close to me.  I sewed 152 blades for Happy Dance Quilt and the girl was under the table with her head on my left thigh as I sewed.  She seemed lost not going to work for 2 days and just wanted to be touching me.  She is so sweet, my heart melts.

I have sent an email this am to book her in for Daycare on Sunday. I am looking forward to our Brissie bloggers stitching day and I am not allowed to leave the girl alone for more than 3 hours.
It will be a fun day for her too, playing with the other dogs from her original home.   

I am joining in Aiming for Accuracy Quilt Along.  Check out the link, if you like.  This one  has no pressure, just fun.  The block instructions will be free until October, so plenty of time to work it out.

Part of joining in requires mention in a blog post, so here it is.

Friday, dear De came over and we went through my fabric (again)...we do it often LOL.
I like how the designer gives info for using yardage OR  fat quarters.  The directions suggest 24 fat quarters, so..

I already knew I wanted to use a lovely cream yardage I have for the black areas in the sample, and also that I have plenty of purple in all shades of fat quarters.   Once we got looking though, we saw more choices beyond lavender-purple.

See that stripe fabric near the top centre?  It has a nice range of colours to pick from.    We used that as the "anchor" and chose fabrics from there.  I don't know if I have ever used yellow in a quilt, but I will be soon!   I am looking forward to this project and quilting along with others too.  Although I have made many quilts, this will be my very first quilt along.  Maybe you would like to join in too?  xx debbie


Sunday, 16 June 2013

Patchwork and Toddler dramas

                                               This weekend has been a challenge and that is an understatement in more ways than one.  I have been trying to keep this "toddler" pup entertained AND  I used a patchwork  tutorial that is all WRONG.  One lesson  I have learned (again) is that each pup is VERY different than the others and to NEVER trust a tutorial (without making a test block) , even if someone on another blog said it is great!

Friday afternoon, the lady who drives the van M-F  to collect girl3 in the morning for work and bring her home in the afternoon brought a package of rawhide chew bones too.  The girl was quite restless on Saturday so I gave her one and she loved it.  Notice the teddy is always close.....

                                 Same time, different angle...still chewing the rawhide bone.

Yes, that is cute....but SOMEONE  peed on the floor by the back door two nights/mornings in a row.  Ok, it was on the tiles and not the wood floor, but still...not cool! She seemed to have lost the plot Friday and Saturday nights!

She didn't wake me to go out, so I am trying to work out if she is unsettled because she didn't go to work over the weekend, or if I need to let her out again much later, or if it is because she is so much younger than the other two girls that she just can't go as long.
I was all motivated to sew this weekend.  Saturday, I spent a lot of time cutting blades for a Whirlygig quilt, which in my little world will be called Happy Dance Quilt.
I've been looking at various tutorials for some time now.
 I finally settled on one recommended on another blog (can't remember where) and it sounded great.  So, I cut around 250-300 print and plain white blades on Saturday so I could do some massive chain piecing on Sunday.   I cut 3 rows of 4 inch squares off of some of the fat quarters I chose earlier.

I cut the 4 inch squares into blades following the instructions on the tutorial and then I sewed them in pairs, print with white. I cut them apart for ease of ironing, then I counted them. There are 152 pieces in this picture. I sewed all the pairs I could until I ran out of white.  I estimate there are 250-300 more print blades left.....I did spend a fair bit of time cutting blades yesterday! 
I should have made a test block first...(head banging here)
This tutorial is WRONG!  It starts off with a square which you cut into equal half blades.
Well, when you sew the blades, you no longer have a square, you have a rectangle due to the seam allowance.  SO, if you wish to proceed, you will need to do some trimming to get a finished Happy Dance block.
Grrr...If you post a tutorial, please test it first to make sure it is correct...just saying!
( I was wondering if it was ME, but it is not...De also got same result as me )
This weekend, girl 3 has been wanting to be touching me. All. The. Time.   It's our first weekend alone together and I think she is lost not going to work all day.  When I was doing the chain piecing for the white, navy and lime quilt, she even went under the table and rested her head on my left thigh while I sewed.   *warm fuzzies*
She really is a sweetie and my favourite so far, even if she has a weak bladder.
xx debbie

Wednesday, 12 June 2013


Well, I had one night alone and I felt  SO lost.  I didn't have anyone to make an evening meal for, or to let out, and no snoring was heard either.  But the next day, the sun shone again and look who is here!

                                                 Meet girl 3, my first Golden Girl.

She is very Blonde, actually.  It seems she can't get enough of the teddy I found in an OP shop some months back.  I must remember that offering a teddy is a great way to make a new friend :)  I just handed her the teddy and she posed like a calendar model all by herself with no help from me.

She doesn't pay much attention to the camera or the flash.  She is trained to ignore distractions because she is a real working girl.  She has passed all of her training and only has a couple more months of training to go. Well done, Golden Girl!

                 She is nearly 6 kg larger than girl 2 but still lean and healthy. (girl 2 was a prem )

She is definitely a cuddly girl.  I have given heaps of tummy rubs and ear scratches already. Sweet....
                                          See how she has her back half flattened out.....

                Remember how girl 2 rested with her front paws in a rather odd position? 

                                                 Well ok then, whatever  you like.

The girl leaves for work in the am, so today while she is away, I  have been going through my fabric
stash. For current projects, I need Christmas fabric (not looking good for that), baby fabric, (plenty, just need to decide what), and white, navy and lime. 

I won't be using ALL of these, but this is what I pulled on my first fabric pass through.  I have a rather healthy fat quarter stash so I rarely need to shop outside my sewing room when I want to make something.   This will be a
Whirlygig quilt (as it is called in blogland), but mine will be renamed "Happy Dance Quilt".  Every time I see one of those quilts, I always think it looks like a happy dance more than a whirlygig :)

Last year, I had x-rays done and they gave me the films.  I am using them to make templates for myself and dear De.   These templates are for a block starting at 6 inches.  Can't wait to see how it turns out as this pattern is one I have never tried before (even though I have been quilting since 1973)  LOL.    Hope your day is good too! xx debbie

Monday, 10 June 2013

Girl 2 is gone :(

Yesterday, the "mum and dad" for girl 2 arrived home from overseas.  They came to collect her at 10am today.  She has been with me since 9 May so I am really used to having her around.  When they saw the teddy bear, they said I was spoiling her...   :)

                     I am pretty much ok until I see the bed minus her bedding and HER.
When they arrived this morning, she was so excited.  Her tail (and her whole back half) was going faster than the speed of light. I know I will be missing the Happy Dance the most, by far!!

We both woke up around 4am due to the rain.  Two things comfort me when I am down...baking and stitching.  It seemed a perfect day to bake and warm the house up a bit.

A few months back, I did an online survey and received a box of Adriano's Brownies in the post.   I baked them today and they turned out great.  They come with white chocolate in the batter and chocolate chunks to stir in and add to the top.  While I will enjoy this special treat,  I won't be paying $8 for a boxed brownie mix because I know I can make brownies myself  from scratch for less than half the cost of that box mix.
Since the mixing bowl had chocolate in it and the oven was on, I decided to make my fave muffins too.   This is a forgiving recipe that will take lots of adjustments.  It also freezes well to grab on the way out or to eat when too tired to make anything else.

My camera doesn't do well with close ups, always blurry....blehh.

Here are the muffins and brownies that I kept out  packaged and then packaged again in a big ziplock bag.  I still have ants even though it is cold now.   I also put some of each in the freezer already because I know I can't eat two full recipes of goodies!  I like to tell myself the muffins are healthy because they have a full cup of oats in them. Mmmm....

I knew girl 2's parents were going to the Philippines, but they also went to Sri Lanka.  They brought this lovely gift of 4 candles from there: Citronella, Lemon Grass, Cinnamon, and Cloves.   They were telling me how popular cloves are there and they even bought clove toothpaste!  I won't be alone for long...girl 3 comes tomorrow and she will be my first Golden Girl.  I hear she is  VERY smart!
She will be graduating VERY soon and then she will be a real working girl. Can't wait to meet her.

xx debbie

Saturday, 8 June 2013

FNWF, VET, Golden Girl,OPAM

I signed up for FNWF over at Cheryll's place.  I had big plans to start a white, lime and navy patchwork quilt I have been wanting to do for ages.   I really must sort out a new light for my sewing area, because age is catching up with me and I am finding it hard to sew at night on the machine due to all the shadows, especially when I am tired. 

Not to worry,  I have a nice light for hand stitching, so I worked on this instead.

This is called "Monday is Wash Day" and is by dear Vicki over at The Pickledish Patch.
I have met her twice at "Let's Get Stitched" and she is SO nice! I wish we lived closer!
Friday morning, the girl (girl 2) had a vet appointment.  I have to say it was tiring for both of us but I am kinda glad she got all the needles and not me!  First, she had blood tests done.
She was very brave when she got shaved there and then the needle to collect blood.
She got a cool purple bandage complete with smiley faces  to show for her efforts too LOL.  After the blood draw, she also got an ear swab because she scratches her ears a lot.  Lucky me, I get to give her ear medicine twice a day  now which I can assure you she would rather NOT have.
Then she got a thermometer where the sun doesn't shine, another needle for routine vaccinations, and her first ear medications AND a squirt of medicine up her nose too, which made her sneeze like crazy.  Poor girl was exhausted by the time we got back home.   One approved treat is peanut butter which she absolutely loves!

See the red rubber bone? It is hollow and I am allowed to put either peanut butter or Vegemite inside which is meant to take ages for her to lick out. (it doesn't take long) I gave her peanut butter as a treat for being so brave at the Vet.  Her family returns from overseas Sunday and will come for her Monday morning.  I can hear that clock ticking......anyway.....

I am excited to say a new girl is coming Tuesday afternoon.  I know her name and I know she must be bigger (going by the amount of food coming with her).  I also know she is my first Golden Retriever and I am so excited to meet her.  I can't wait to meet you, my first Golden Girl!!

For OPAM, I made two Breast Cancer drain bags and two tea towels.  The drain bags were made from a tutorial found over at Cheryll's.  I will post them to you Cheryll sometime next week when I have a free moment from foster dog duty. Please click on the link if you are able to help out too.

The tea towels were made from donated linen (thank you De). I used them for trial and MUCH error trying to teach myself how to do machine applique.  No worries, it will come with some more tries.

De did some of the star applique.  I am still trying to work out which stitch I like the best, after all, there is more to try than blanket stitch!  I also finished all the blue and brown 4 patches and they are pressed and ready for a new project, maybe a baby boy quilt? xx debbie

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Travelling Treasures

Travelling Treasures is on the move again.  It started  here at Sweet Little Cottage in SE QLD in March 2013.  I was a winner on Melody's blog for her Tuesday Treasures, and I made the needlecase pattern she sent me. Then I had the idea to pass it on instead of filing it away.  Melody liked the idea too, so TT was born. Ironically,  Dear Melody in Victoria was the first ever winner.  I did a guessing game giveaway and Melody was the first to guess correctly, how cool is that?!

 Melody chose what she wanted to keep and added some fantastic goodies before she sent the parcel on again.  Melody chose  Jenny of Elefantz as her winner and Jenny received her parcel all the way up  in Townsville  this week.  Jenny has done a lovely blog post showing pictures of what Melody sent to her and what she has decided to keep.  She also describes what she is adding to the parcel before she chooses the next winner.

You still have time to enter to be the next winner of Travelling Treasures.    Jenny plans to choose her winner on Monday 10th of June.   The parcel has changed SO much already, I can't wait to see what happens next!   If you are not familiar with TT, it is easy to play along.  The parcel will always contain one fat quarter and two patterns along with a few assorted extras. You choose what you would like to keep, replace the items, and choose the next winner.  Easy, inexpensive, and fun.

I started a new giveaway too.  For the chance to win my most UNLOVELY fat quarter, just go to my post from yesterday and guess what the yucky treat I have to give to my current foster dog is. Easy!

Good luck with Jenny's giveaway!  xx debbie

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Unlovely New Giveaway

Girl # 2 has been with me for 4 Sundays so far, and  there is one more Sunday  to go until her family returns from overseas and  then she will go back to her regular home on Monday.  She came with two "nappie bags" full of personal items.  She has her own jar of peanut butter (a favourite treat).  I use this to put in her hollow rubber bone for a treat and as glue on bread so she will take her tablets.   She also came with 5 servings of  another treat that her family gives her on Sunday mornings. my house, she had her Sunday morning treat on the FIRST  Sunday only. LOL.
She still gets  her treat, but on Sunday NIGHT  here as my tummy is a bit stronger when I have been awake for awhile.

Where I live, the nights have been cool.  I noticed the girl was curled up pretty tightly, so I covered her up.  When I looked a few minutes later, this is what I saw:

*giggle*.....I guess her nose was cold too.

Anyway, back to the giveaway.   The last time I started a giveaway, it was a guessing game.  I got several comments about how fun the guessing was... so I wanted to do that again.
I didn't want to post "UGLIEST FAT QUARTER" giveaway, so I looked up "ugly" and found "unlovely".   I have this fat quarter that is so unlovely, it hurts my eyes.  It is SO unlovely,  I won't even take a picture to show you, at the risk of breaking my camera.   When I give the girl her Sunday morning treat on Sunday nights, it brings to mind this unlovely fat quarter and gives me the same reaction.  I splutter and moan and groan and carry on and just wish it to be gone.

*disclaimer*  If you are easily offended, please don't read any further. I use a 5 letter word that is gross and starts with V and ends with T.  Ok, then.

To be fair, I will give a description of this fat quarter  first  so you can decide IF  you are brave enough  to enter.  The background is that pukey acid tinged  yellowish colour of breast fed baby poop.  There are accents of teal and blue and even some fairies and cherubs, which I normally like...but not in this example.  There is another colour I can only describe as pale, powdery, peachy, maybe old  prawn vomit.?   All this is accented with lashings of bright purple and a zodiac theme.

Ok...if you would like to win my  most unlovely fat quarter (so I can get it out of here), here is how to enter:
Live anywhere.......I am not fussed where to send it, as long as it leaves soon!!. 
Guess what the Sunday treat is for the girl that gives me the same feeling as the fat quarter.
You can have one guess per day until someone wins.
If you are brave enough, good luck to you! xx debbie

Sunday, 2 June 2013

I was only gone 40 minutes!

Today is day 12 since that awful bug came to visit.   I think all the medicine has finally worked.

I woke up hungry so I guess that means I am feeling better!   I planned to make a quick morning trip for some food, petrol, and to return library books that are due Tuesday.  All 3 places are close to each other- first food, then petrol, then Library, a nice easy loop.  
I only spent $40 at the supermarket, just a quick shop to grab a few things to get by.
Petrol was high, so I didn't take time fill up either.
Being Sunday, of course the Library was closed, so that was a quick drop and go.
I know this girl can be naughty, so this time I took extra time to make her a treat (she has a bone that I can hide peanut butter deep inside which is meant to entertain her for ages),   clear the benches, close the bedroom doors, and cross my fingers!
I was only gone 40 minutes and this is what I came home to.
Ewww.....lots of tissues I didn't want to see again... blechhh.
See just in front of the sofa? That is my medication box on the floor.  I took my meds just before I left, so I know for sure that was on the bench in the kitchen!
Too guilty to even make eye contact.   Butter wrapper in foreground.
I found chewed up plastic bags in her bed too.   Naughty girl. Very naughty girl.
Not to worry. I still love her but I'm just not speaking to her at the moment LOL.
Thanks for the get well messages, they worked!
xx debbie