Sunday, December 18, 2011

My new love, buttered crumpets and rocket in my wine.

Hi peeps,

My new love is Instagram.  I am quite positively addicted to it.  It gives me such happy flash backs of being 18 again, studying Medical Photography at University.  Back then, I loved experimenting with different photographic techniques and processes.  Now I can do it all on my iphone.  So much fun!

Oh, I forgot to mention we are back in Melbourne now for Christmas.  It feels quite weird to be back in my old home town, it is so familiar yet so unfamiliar, all at the same time.  For the first few days, I found it difficult to contact any one - we were enjoying just hanging out with my mum and step-dad.  We had been missed and we had missed them.  You really appreciate your loved ones when you have been away from them.

But now, let the fun begin.  We can't wait to catch up with so many lovely people we have missed hanging out with.

This is my week in Instagram photographs.  A lot of the week has involved enjoying many of the foods we can't get in Hong Kong.  Like buttered crumpets.  The ones we can buy in Hong Kong are not this good.  

Buttered crumpets.

Cheese is ridiculously expensive in Hong Kong.  I am going to enjoy my favourite while I am here.  Often.

Mmmmmmmm.

Playing in the sand pit is so much fun.  Especially when you are 5 or 2 years old.  Even more fun when you have not done it for over 5 months.

Sand pit time.

There has been rocket in my wine.

There is some rocket in my wine.

Iced coffee shared with dear friends who have been missed (Hi Nell!)

Iced coffee on a warm day.

I now feel like a craft pusher.  I took some unfinished fabric covered button components over to Nell's house yesterday and she loved making them as much as I do.  Her 6 year old daughter had a great time making some too.  They are now addicted.  So I am the craft pusher - all healthy fun at least.

This is our finished hair bobble posie.  So pretty.

A poise of hair bobbles.

Have a lovely week.  I know I will :)

Cat.

Friday, December 16, 2011

This Moment - Her Idea.

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Her idea.

Joining in with SouleMama.

Night, night peeps, Cat.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

My (Pink and Sparkly) Creative Space

Pink and sparkly bunting

Hi peeps,

Sham Shui Po has offered up some really unusual fabric finds when Zoe and I have been out exploring Hong Kong.  There is so much different fabric here to choose from.  I love natural fibres and prefer to be sewing with 100% cottons and linens.  When I found these two fabrics though, I had to embrace the polyester.

Pink and sparkly bunting.

I think they will be perfect Christmas presents for some special little girls in my life, who love pink and sparkly things.

Silver sparkly.

This bunting has taken me over two months to complete. The pink fabric is quite awful to cut accurately, it frays easily and the little bits stick to everything.  I mean everything.  I have not really enjoyed working with this fabric.  I wanted the comfort zone of my usual 100% cotton fabric.

Along the way, I also found these two fabrics (more polyesters). I had intended to include them, but I think they don't fit with the pink and sparkly bunting.

Pink and lacy bunting

They make gorgeous buntings on their own (and possibly together, now I see them side by side above) just not with the pink and sparkly bunting.  What do you think?

Have a lovely Creative Space day.

Cat

Thursday, December 1, 2011

My (Furoshiki) Creative Space

Hello there,

For the last 2 years, I have been collecting Christmas fabric with the intention of using it like wrapping paper.  For the last two years, I have run out of time to do this.

This year, I have managed to wrap some Christmas presents in fabric, Furoshiki like.  I first stumbled upon Furoshiki a few years ago and ever since I have wanted to give it a try.  Furoshiki is a traditional Japanese wrapping cloth used to transport gifts or other items.  There is some great info on Furoshiki here and here and a video here if you want to know more.

I am not using the traditional Furoshiki cloths, I have been cutting up my Christmas fabric stash and overlocking the edges.

So, take one home made zip pouch, add it to a square of fabric, fold, wrap and tie the fabric.

Wrapped in fabric.

And here you have it, a hand made Christmas present, wrapped in fabric.  

Wrapped in fabric.

Add a hand made gift tag if you like too.

Here are a few more.  For a difficult to wrap present, I used some Christmas ribbon to fasten the fabric.

Green wrapped in fabric

Wrapped in fabric.

I hope to wrap many more Christmas presents this year in fabric.  For me, the best bit about fabric wrapped presents is that the fabric can be used again and again.   There will be a lot less paper in the rubbish or recycling.  Not to mention, I found it fun to wrap using fabric.

Three wrapped in fabric

Have a great Creative Space day.

Cat.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Gift taggy fun.

Christmas gift tags

Hi again,

Two posts in one day, insane stuff (for me).

These are some of my finished Christmas present gift tags, which I started a few weeks ago.

They are not half as nice as Emily's, hers are absolutely gorgeous, do have a look.  I have gift tag envy, that's for sure.  

My hand made Christmas is slowly coming together. 

Have a great evening.

Cat.

Four happy snow men, all in a row.

Four happy snow men all in a row.

Hi lovelies,

I am finishing up lots of little sewing projects, now that I have found where to buy stuffing in Hong Kong.

Four little happy snow men heads, all finished.

Blue snow man head.

They really are so cute.  The felt works much better than the linen I used last time.  The snow man pattern can be found here.

Have a great day, Cat.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Hoops for a Nan and a Granny

Pressies for Nan and Granny

Hi lovelies,

I was so happy with my Christmas hoops that I decided to make a few more.  One for my Grandma and one for the Shropshire boys Nan.  I know they will both love this fabric.

Yay, two more hand made Christmas presents finished.  I still have some more to complete, so I better be off.  Are you busy making any Christmas presents?

Have a great day.

Cat.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

My (Christmas hoop art) Creative Space

Hi lovelies,

This week I had a brain wave.  An idea, for an easy way to decorate our rented apartment in Hong Kong ready for Christmas.  The good old "fabric in the embroidery hoop" trick.

Christmas hoop art.

Quick, easy Christmas decoration completed.  I like it!

Happy Creative Space day to you.

Cat.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

My (Christmas punchy) Creative Space

I have met lots of people since arriving in Hong Kong in July.  Many are mums and helpers (maids) from Abbey's kinder or Zoe's playgroup.  Often I will chat with other parents and helpers at the local playgrounds, of which there are many close to our apartment.

In all of this, I have made one true friend (so far), one person I have really made a connection with.  We have many things in common, she loves exploring Hong Kong as much as I do and we parent in very similar ways.  Both our big girls go to kinder together and love playing with each other, and our toddlers get along really well too.  She is also crafty - she makes cards and does beautiful scrap-booking.

Look what she has lent me this week, to have a play with.  Oh boy, did I have some fun last night with her paper punches!  Like I needed another crafty hobby.  I am now hooked, and want to start my own paper punch collection.

Punchy fun.

Today when Zoe sleeps, I will put some music on, make a cup of tea, sit down and make some Christmas gift tags with all my paper punchy lovelies.

Pop in and see what all the Creative peeps are up to today.

Happy Thursday to you.

Cat

Thursday, November 10, 2011

My (happy alien doing yoga) Creative Space

This week in my Creative Space, I have been busy making an alien.  A happy alien who loves to do yoga.  See, he loves it.

Aliens like doing yogic head stands.

My yoga loving alien was almost a huge craft fail.  In my mastitis effected state, I kind of forgot felt is not that easy to turn inside-out when sewn into fiddly shapes like little alien feet, hands or head appendages.  I had to unpick all my sewing, cut off the seam allowance, then sew him back up again, this time on the outside, using blanket stitch.  I am so glad I could save him as I spent a very happy afternoon, during Zoe's nap time, hand sewing on his face and tummy detail.

Alien under construction

Here is the happy alien, right way around, with a little help from my assistant (2 year old Zoe).

The alien and my little helper

My assistant also thought happy alien needed a nappy change.  Aawwwww, too cute me thinks.

Alien nappy change time.

I am going to have to sneak the happy alien and my little squishy butterflies out of the house so I can post them to Pip for the Softies for Mirabel drive.  Both my girls love them, and would happily have them as their own.

Have a lovely Thursday, peeps.

Cat.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Little squishy butterflies

Hi Peeps!

My little squishy butterflies from Thursday are finally finished.  I made them happy ones with a smile and had to add antenna.  I wanted my butterflies to be anatomically correct, you see.

So three cute little squishy butterflies are all finished and ready for the Softies for Mirabel Foundation.  It is such a good cause, do check it out if you have not heard of it before.  Get your craft on and make a softie or two or more.

This is Super Hero Butterfly:

Super hero butterfly.

Abbey named this one Carrobell:

Carrobell butterfly.

Abbey likes this one best:

I like this one.

Group hug:

Group hug!

I have one more Softie for Mirabel in the making.  There is a sneak peek of him over here, he is not finished yet and I am a little smitten with him.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Cat.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

My (fluttery) Creative Space

I was not going to join in with Our Creative Space today, I had nothing much on the go apart from another pile of zippered pouches.  I also made a Happy Snowman a few days ago.

More of the same

Today though, I find myself taking it easy, Doctors orders.  I have mastitis and am feeling all achy and awful.  The silly thing is, Zoe weaned 3 months ago - but I still have mastitis. Not fair.

So what is a girl to do when she is taking it easy?  Start on a few softies for Mirabel, that's what she can do.

Little fluttery softies.....

Fluttery butterfly construction

That will soon look like this:

Butterfly un construction

From this cute book called Make your own Misfits.

Have a great day.

Cat

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Happy Snowman

Happy snowman

Yesterday I received the Christmas edition of Tickle the Imagination magazine in my inbox.  I knew straight away that I would be making a snowman that day.  And I did.  Even after I realised I had no white felt in my stash, I was not deterred.

I raided my scrap box and found some linen scraps (left over from making Abbey's kinder blanket)

I used blanket stitch around the edge of the linen and hope this stops it from fraying.  I will be making a few more of these, I am sure.

Have a great day.

Cat.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Miss Representation

Me and my girls

Have you heard of Miss Representation? Kirsty over at 4 kids, 20 suitcases and a beagle recently wrote a fabulous post about this new movie.  The extended trailer to the movie is in this post and I find it very confronting and terrifying as I am the mother of two little girls.

If I was to be totally honest with you (and myself) I must say I am terrified of raising my two girls.  I want them to be confident and happy.  I want them to love who they are and love what they do.  But how do I encourage them to be like this when some days I struggle myself?  It feels so difficult to achieve in this modern age.  It has taken me the best part of 20 years to really like who I am now, to be happy with myself and to know it is OK to have some squishy bits, I do not need to be a stick figure to be happy.

I will continue to tell my girls they can be anything they want to be when they grow up.  I want to believe this - but more importantly, I want my girls to believe this - to know this is possible.

I hope the movie makes it to Hong Kong.  If not, I am sure the interwebs will allow me to watch it some time in the future.

In the meantime, I want to remember (and never forget) how gorgeous my two girls are, just for being themselves - especially when they hold hands while walking along sharing an apple.

I want to remember

Cat.

Happy Halloween

Boo!

Happy Halloween

Dotty Doll and I hope you all had a scary Halloween.  

Cat

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

My (little heart) Creative Space

Little love hearts

Tonight I have been stitching some little felt hearts.  I felt (haha) that we needed some home made loveliness after we had an eventful afternoon.  Abbey's dear friend from kinder fell over while running, split her head open and we saw it all happen.  There was so much blood as it was her temple and she did need a hospital visit and stitches.  Abbey was very concerned for her friend.

Abbey found it difficult to get to sleep tonight, I could tell she was anxious about her friend. She kept coming out of her room saying she had a tummy ache and asking after her friend.  When I got a text just after 9pm saying her friend was OK, stitched up and tucked up in bed, we could tell Abbey her friend was OK.  So Abbey was finally tucked up in her own bed with a heat pack on her sore tummy and a little hand made heart in one hand.  Made with love.  Some extra ones made for her friend (and her mumma)

Happy Creative Space day to you.

Cat.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Virtual flowers for a friend

Happy Birthday, Nell! 

Dear Nell,

Happy Birthday to you!  Here is a virtual bunch of flowers for you.  I am thinking of you on your birthday and wish I was there to help you celebrate.

Thank goodness for modern technology, I am loving seeing you on skype every week - even when our kids still interrupt our conversations.  Some things never change.

Moving so far away from you has made me really appreciate how wonderful our friendship is.  I feel so blessed to have you in my life.  You are an amazing person, one of the the best cooks I know and a fabulous friend.

See you in December!

Love from Cat xox

Monday, October 24, 2011

My first time

Hi lovelies,

Today I am doing my first ever guest post over at Emma's lovely blog Frog, Goose and Bear.


Pop over and visit my post for today then stay a while, Emma's blog is full of fabulous ideas and easy recipes.

Have a lovely day.

Cat.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My (meow) Creative Space

Today I hope to sew up some new bibs and burp cloths.  I have not made any of these for over a year. Around 13 months ago, when the the vague possibility of moving to Hong Kong was early days and still just a possibility, I stopped making them.  Then, rather quickly, we really were moving to Hong Kong and no more bibs or burp cloths were made as I was busy packing and sorting.

Now, this week, a dear friend has had her first baby.  These fabrics are so her.  Yes, the pink and red strawberry fabric is getting used again.   I guess you can tell I love this fabric.

I don't normally share on my blog presents I am making for friends before they have received them.  In this instance, I am sure she wont be reading my blog, so I should be safe.

I best get sewing, I want to get them in the post as soon as possible.

Happy Creative Space day to you.

Cat.

Cats and strawberries.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

All about spirograph, the Dancing Man and Chinese parsley

It is probably high time I talked about living in Hong Kong and not just about the wonders of fabric shopping in Sham Shui Po.  We have been here for a little over 3 months now.  I have really started to enjoy living here.  At first it was a little overwhelming - a new city, a different climate, different cuisine, a different language.  No friends or family, not knowing where to buy some everyday items.

Now, after 3 months, I know where to buy the avocados that will ripen (from the wet market) I know where to buy yummy ham off the bone. We know where NOT to get a haircut (the Shropshire boy had 2 hair cuts in one day and it was still not great)  Some days you go into a supermarket and they will have an old favourite food item from Australia or England - like Hula Hoops or BBQ Shapes.  They may never stock them again, or could run out of them and take 2 months to re-stock, but this is OK now as we know what to expect.  Hong Kong really feels like our home now.

Fun fun fun!

I bought Abbey this spirograph set recently.  I remember playing with one when I was a child.  I can assure you, it is still lots of fun!

Here are some completely random points about our time in Hong Kong so far:

  • The Chinese do not like babies to suck their thumb.  They think it is dirty and disgusting.  I wish I had a dollar for every time a local has (gently) tried to take Zoe's thumb out of her mouth or made a comment about sucking her thumb.  I find it very funny now, as I am Zoe's mum, I know she loves sucking her thumb.  
  • Today I was quite shocked to see a baby in pram sucking it's thumb!  You do not see that very often.
  • (Most) People are so friendly here.  The local Chinese really, really love babies and children.  So many people say hello to us everyday (well, say hello to Zoe first and then maybe Abbey)
  • Yes, even with the above point, it is quite common here to have a full time,  live in domestic helper/maid.  Most of these women come from the Philippines or Indonesia.  They are not paid much and work 6 days a week, away from their own families.  I am still struggling to understand how this works.
  • Coriander in Hong Kong is called Chinese parsley.
  • We live near some apartment blocks where pets are allowed.  Most days I see a few pampered dogs being pushed around in a baby pram, being taken for a walk - not actually walking.  
  • There is a local Grand dad that dances to pop music in the street.  We call him the Dancing Man (or Groover Man) and walk past him most mornings on the way dropping Abbey off at kinder.  The girls now wave to him, and he waves back.  He is a great dancer and is always smiling.  He makes me smile just seeing him in the same place every morning, happily dancing away without a care in the world.
Until next time, have a lovely day peeps.  

Cat

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My (lego) Creative Space

Hello there my friend.

Hello there, my friend.

This week I have been finishing the lego bunting.

Lego Bunting.  Lovely.

This fabric is so lovely to sew with. 100% cotton, Kokka, made in Japan.  Gorgeous.

Bunting

I want to keep making more bunting with this fabric as it is just feels so good.  Some more Christmas presents finished - yay.

Peek-a-boo!

Peek-a-boo

I love visiting all the other Creative Spaces every week, find them over here.

Happy Thursday to you.

Cat.

Monday, October 10, 2011

When all went quiet.....

When all goes quiet....

When all went quiet, I knew Zoe was up to mischief.......

No harm was done to either toddler or Janome.

Have a lovely week peeps.

Cat

Thursday, October 6, 2011

My (WIP) Creative Space

This week, I still have lots of sewing projects on the go.  The only things I finished this week were the zippered pouches.  I am still working on the rattle cubes and the pink and sparkly bunting.

This gorgeous collection of green and orange fabric is destined to be bunting for my besties daughter for Christmas. She is 6 years old and I love it that pink is not her favourite colour like most other girls her age - she loves orange.  It is a refreshing change to be sewing with some colours I would not normally have chosen for myself or my girls.   I am waiting for the just washed fabric to dry.  That won't be too long as it is still warmish here in Hong Kong, most days this week have been in the low 20's (celsius)  The stifling heat of the past few months, I hope, is behind us.

Orange and Green

I want to finish off this lego bunting I begun way back at the start of July soon after moving to Hong Kong.  I only realised yesterday that I do not have the right shade of blue thread.  (Zoe and) I have been exploring the Sham Shui Po area one day a week since we first visited this amazing area of Hong Kong.  I now know where to buy more fabulous ribbons, zippers and beads beads and so many more beads.  Last week I found a shop that sells sewing machine needles for my Janome machines.  I have not found any threads, anywhere, yet.  Some more exploring is in order (yippee!)

Lego Bunting

All the other lovely Creative Spaces are over here.  Happy browsing to you.

Cat