Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Tuesday's Treasure

I'm cheating a little this week as my Tuesday Treasure is a will be......  I've wanted to make a Teddy Bear for years and years.  Since learning to make dolls I've wanted to give Teddies a try but have always been daunted. However, I recently bought a kit for Elle Jane and she has sat in my cupboard for a few weeks - every now and again I get her out and have a look and then put her back.

Now that I'm in Bundaberg with my son, I have the opportunity to go to a class with Debbie - who designed Elle and learn how to make a Teddy Bear.  I am so excited.  Can't wait to start.  So here is a picture of Elle Jane as she looks on the pattern:

In a few weeks time, I'll be putting my very own Elle Jane on here for you to see.  So, it's cheating a little, but I know she will be a treasure when she's complete.

Thanks to Melody for organising.  Pop over and visit her - it's a beautiful blog and see who else is playing this week.


Monday, January 30, 2012


I've been trying to keep up with reading as well as sewing - as I promised myself on 1 January this year.

I have finished "Death Comes to Pemberley" by PD James - really enjoyed this one.  Couldn't put it down.  If you love Jane Austen you will love this - it follows on from Pride and Prejudice.  This is one I'd read again.

I'm currently reading "Having the Builders In" by Reay Tannahill.  Enjoying this one too.  Set in medieval England and the story revolves around life in the castle, particularly in regard to the extensions planned.  Hence the title.  It's quite amusing in a very understated way.  There is a follow on novel called "Having the Decorator's In" and as this one is so much fun, I'll be delving into this one as well.


Away from home for 3 weeks

My eldest son has started an apprenticeship in Bundaberg.  He is living on our property just south of Bundy and as he doesn't have a driver's licence (yet!) either DH or I have to come and stay with him.  We don't expect this to be a long term thing as he has done everything required to get his licence, just has to sit the practical test.  I expect he will have it in the next month or so.  DH brought him up here last week and spent the week here.  I came up on Australia Day and we made a long weekend out of it - a very wet one as it turned out.  DH left with the other children yesterday morning - leaving a very quiet household of just DS and me.  I have been making the most of the time and have finished the stitcheries on The Garden of Life Quilt.  I have traced the stitcheries for another quilt.  I've visited the LQS in Bundy this morning and will be spending some of my time there as well as joining the local quilter's group.

Missing the children, of course - but making the most of my time away.  Although, I could get used to the quiet.  Have great plans to catch up on Some Kind of Wonderful, Dear Jane and Farmer's Wife quilts.

I will endeavour to organise some photos, but unfortunately, my second DS lost my internet connector for the laptop and so I have to rely on finding WIFI to use the internet.  Can be notoriously slow and prone to dropping out.  We'll see how we go.  I enquired this morning about buying another connection - but at $299, he can keep looking!!


Sunday, January 22, 2012

18th birthday party and a farewell

Last night was our eldest son's 18th birthday party. It went well. We were a little worried - hearing lots of horror stories! However, it was all a lot of fun The young adults all were very polite and well behaved. As 18 is the legal age for alcohol consumption in Australia, 18 brings all the dilemmas that go with this. One boy over-indulged - or just drank too quickly and too many varieties. He was quite sick and it was a little worrying. Anyway, after constant checking he got up at 2am and was singing songs and generally enjoying himself. If I was his parents I would be so worried. I asked my DS about his family and his opinion is that they don't like it but seem unable to prevent it. So sad to see someone wrecking their young life. Today was spent tidying up and getting ready for DH to take DS to a new town and a new job. I think that this has all happened so quickly and there has been so much to do that I didn't really have a chance to think about the emotions involved. When they drove out this afternoon I was just so overwhelmed and totally devastated. I kept seeing that tiny baby I was handed in the birthing suite and not believing that 18 years have passed and he is going off to pursue his own goals. I want those years back. I want to do them all again. It has taken all my will power not to phone them and say "Come home - we'll find you a job here.". Of course I didn't. I know the theory - you only have your children on loan and if you are successful in parenting then this is what they do - fly the coop and make lives of their own. I keep thinking that they didn't cover this in the ante-natal classes I attended all those years ago - those sessions that were supposed to prepare me to be a parent. They should have spent less time on how to change nappies and more on how to let go!! I've had my cry. Now I have to get over it. A very busy week ahead - one starting kindy, two starting high school. I can see lots more tears ahead. My eldest DD is starting ballet in pointe shoes - a very big moment in a young ballerina's life. So she and I are going tomorrow to do the special fitting and buy these shoes. Another milestone. I have to try and savor every moment - all too soon and she will be 18 and going on her way. I am very aware, too, that all my children are still with me and that many other parents are suffering the loss of their children in a much more real sense. My heart has ached for these parents as I have felt sorry for myself - I can't even imagine the loss they must feel. I'll be fine. Sometimes you just need to be a little melancholy and reminisce all those little moments! Cheers - need some sleep - 3 hours is just not enough!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Having a play on an iPad

My son has been given an iPad for his school work. He has mild cerebral palsy and find the task of writing quite difficult. So I've borrowed it and I thought I would see how it could be used in blogging. So far I like it a lot. I have heard that uploading photos is a problem. Busy day here getting ready for eldest DS' 18th birthday party. He actually turned 18 yesterday. Spent the day with friends and we went shopping in the evening to buy him gear for his new job. Today was spent trying to get everything set up. Tomorrow will be lots of cooking. With dinner tonight DH and I decided to open a bottle of wine. DS got out 3 glasses. I was about to say "and what do you think you're doing?" when I realized that he is legally an adult now and legally able to have alcohol. A bit of a shock!! I hope all those sewing up a storm for FNSI are having a wonderful time. Cheers PS: I can't tell you whether the photos work or not as I don't have anynstorednon the iPad. But can tell you that the rest is great!!!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Orientation Day at Kindy

Today was our orientation day at the brand new Kindy - which is just around the corner from our home.  Miss 3 1/2 had the best day ever.  She played with collage, blew bubbles, played in home corner, with a wooden train set, dress ups, dolls, and puzzles.

On the way home I asked her if she was going to go back to Kindy on Monday (which is the first day officially).  She looked at me and said "Mum, I need a week off!"  And I know just how she feels...........

Collage is a serious business!

Can you have an angelic witch?

Dress Up is so much fun!

Twirling and twirling..........

Another outift.
I wonder who is going to find the separation on Monday more difficult - this cutie or me?  Mmmmmm!  I think I know.........



One Flower Wednesday

Here are some flowers - these are ones I am making for a 3/4" hexie quilt.  It's a very slow progress - like all, but as always an enjoyable journey.


Fabric Storage Idea (Fabulous) and more school organising

Just found this fabulous link from Karen at Sew Many Ways.  How to store your fabric using a filing cabinet.  Excellent idea and I've just remembered we have one of these stored in DH's shed (wonder what he's storing in it temporarily?).  Worth popping over to have a look.

I'm really taken with this idea.

It's school book and other assorted things organising time.  Labelling, labelling, labelling.  I've given up the covering - used to spend hours - days in fact - covering books.  Then by Week 3 I would see how my work was being treated - and wonder why I bothered.  One year I just decided I wouldn't and although I needed to breathe deeply into a paper bag at such a radical idea, I stuck with it and did not cover my children's exercise books.  You know what, the world did not end, the sun did rise the next day and they all survived the school year without the need for intense psychological counselling and I lost a very stressful week.  (I was covering books for 8 children at my peak - down to 6 now with 4 in High School, so it's a bit of a doddle!)  Has anyone else found that the further their children go in school the less they need in terms of books?  Not sure what this says!  Labels for pencils are still calling me, so must go......


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Simply charmed Blog Hop

What a fabulous idea - for the first 14 days of February, 14 designers are going to take one charm pack and make a quilt.  We can follow it through this button:

It sounds like lots of fun.  I don't know if I'll have time to make any of the quilts, but it will be lots of fun to see their ideas.


Tuesday's Treasure

This week Melody has really brought back memories for me with her Tuesday's Treasure.  My mother and my grandmother both had the beautiful old singer machines.  When my mother upgraded her machine and after my grandmother died, three of these machines were stored at my grandmother's house.  Not sure where the third machine came from.  I always thought that when I had somewhere permanent to live I would take them with me - no one else in the family were in any way interested in them.  However, while I was living in Canberra, someone came to our farm looking to acquire "old things" and offered my father $30 for the three machines and some other bits and pieces.  My father (who is not a sewer or interested in antiques) couldn't believe anyone would be so silly to offer this amount of money for rubbish so he sold it.  Needless to say I was very unimpressed, but that's life!!  I finally found the base of a singer sewing machine that had been through a fire and was left out in the paddock to rust away.  The heat of the fire had broken the metal into several pieces.  I hunted through the grass and found them all and dragged it home.  Very early in our marriage DH took all these pieces to a friend of his who could weld this type of metal (he advised DH that he was crazy and the dump was the best place for these pieces of rust.  DH explained that if he did that his life could be over!)  DH then restored the base for me.  So, it's not the beautiful sewing machine Melody has displayed on her blog, but it is one that has lots of memories for me.

  Thanks Melody for reminding me of these memories - and even though the demise of these machines was frustrating, my main memories are sitting with my mother and my grandmother as they sewed and playing with little pieces of fabric - clearly where my love of sewing originated so overall the memories are still very happy ones.

Thanks for hosting, Melody.


A Day of Organising!

Well, our first day back from holidays was a little on the mixed up side.  DH had a meeting he had to go to and it turned out that the person he was meeting was still on holidays!  Duh!!  I spent the morning sorting out patterns and planning what I'm going to be working on this year.  I've printed out the Just Takes Two patterns and yesterday afternoon I bought the red and white fabric.

Scrappy Plate patterns printed, Harrington and Hannah BOM printed, Melody's Penny Rug printed.

Yesterday afternoon was spent buying school books and other return to school items.  Today will be spent labelling and labelling and labelling!!

Last night I met with my Digital Scrapbooking group - our first meet for 2012.  I'm hoping to get lots done through this regular group.  The convenor is also running a Traditional Scrap booking Group - and in scrap booking - that is still my first love but I'm often stuck for ideas and as a result spend lots of time procrastinating rather than doing!!  So, hopefully, this will be a group I will also get a lot out of - and also, hoping that I will get to go to the gatherings on a regular basis.  Kids have a way of upsetting these sorts of plans............

So, some more organising today.  Maybe some sewing tonight - although that could be just more organising, too.

Still rainy weather - which means slightly cooler - so good weather to get things done in.


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Holiday over - and it's raining

Well, like a lot of others around Australia, our holiday is over.  After the heat early in the week we are back to having some very lovely warm days, nice breezes and coolish nights.  Last night the rain came in and it's been raining lightly since about 8pm.  Nice weather for packing!!  But, we need the rain - especially after the heat of last week.

Eldest DS got the apprenticeship.  BIG thanks to Narelle for putting us on to it.  It wasn't the apprenticeship he was originally after, but he can see it's potential and possibilities.  He's been on line checking out all sorts of things.  It's a textile fabrication apprenticeship at a camper trailer manufacturer.  They make the camper trailers from the ground up so it will include welding (and whatever else goes with that), but the apprenticeship is in the canvas work.  I keep telling him that he's caught the quilting bug and saying things like "hands off my Janome!!" Which gives me raised eyebrows in return!  It's so lovely to see him this enthusiastic for his new life.

As eldest DS does not have his driver's licence YET, it means that DH and I will have to share being up here with him for the first few weeks.  It will make organising the other kids a bit harder, but we'll get there.

And with him living up here, it gives us the perfect excuse to put our plan into action and move up here, too.  We had hoped that the end of 2012 would see this happening, but hopefully this is more definite now.  (Being involved in the child protection system, moving can get a bit complicated, so it's a move slowly, negotiate carefully so that we will get the approval we need!)

What a start to the new year - life takes you places when you least expect it.

The week ahead will be very busy - organising the move and his 18th birthday party.  Getting 6 kids ready for school and one ready for Kindy.

Like many others, I could take another week of holidays - and some more sewing!!

Loving this cooler weather - although the hot days were spent reading and playing rummy-o with the kids, so could have bee worse!  Cheers

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Not quite so hot here today...........

This morning is certainly a lot more pleasant than the last two.  Hopefully the day will be as well.  Been too hot to do much of anything!  So some reading and Rummy-O filled the day.

A year ago today two of my sons' birth mother died  (if that makes sense?).  We will do something today to mark the occasion.  One of them has been quite ok with it - probably something to do with him coming home with us from hospital at 6 days old.  The other (who was 18 months when he came to us) has had a very volatile year - probably combined with being 14.

Eldest DS is off for a job interview today for an apprenticeship.  He's really keen, so hoping that he will be successful.  If he is we will be able to realise our dream of living on our acreage property by the end of this year.  Fingers crossed.

The new book I am reading is PD James "Death Comes to Pemberley".  A follow on from Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice".  It is a great read - a can't put down type of book.  Hopefully today will be some reading and some stitching plus a little time at the beach.


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

First Dear Jane Block and Tuesday's Treasures

Finally made a proper start on my Dear Jane quilt.  I picked what I thought would be an "easy" one - just 4 squares and applique.  But working on such small blocks, I didn't take into account the thickness of the pen when I made the applique templates - so they were too big!!  A learning curve - but good to do and see how important accuracy is.  I knew that, of course, but seeing the difference a pen line made was still a revelation.

Anyway, back to my Dear Jane block - here it is.
This is it - the first Dear Jane Block!
Tuesday's Treasure!
This is Tish - and I'm sure she's been my Tuesday Treasure before - but I still couldn't resist this photo opportunity.  One gumboot (her big sister's) and a croc!  She was heading off to see the bonfire eldest DS had just started so was in a hurry and didn't want to get prickles in her feet!  10/10 for thinking!  She is so cute and sooooooo full of mischief.  Hard to believe that the little 2 1/2 month old bundle who only came into our lives for 3 days back in 2008 is about to start Kindy and hopefully by the end of February 2012 we will get the court decision that puts her in our lives permanently!!
 First Book of 2012

One of my New Year Resolutions was to read more fiction.  Marian Keyes was recommended as an author and I found a 99 cent book through Kindle.  Can't get a better price than that to check out a new author.  She is an Irish author - my ancestral home - so it always appeals to me.  I enjoyed the book - called "Rachel's Holiday".  A good summer holiday read - nothing too heavy or challenging, but kept my interest.
I'll be looking for more of hers.

We went into Bundaberg Thursday to check out a possible apprenticeship for eldest  DS - tip given to me by Narelle when we met last week.  Eldest DS was very impressed and is very keen to get the job.  So DH and DS are off went home yesterday to collect his paperwork and take it back to the employer.  I'm excited at the prospect of him coming up here - we may realise our dream of living here sooner rather than later!!  Although, I'm a bit apprehensive about DS living up here by himself.  I know, I know - it's all about the letting go.  Easier in theory than in practice and of course, I left home at his age to go to Uni.  Keep reminding myself of all this, but not easy to do.

It has still got to work out!  He doesn't have the job yet, but he is very keen, so hopefully it will happen.

Our beautiful summer weather of mild days and cool nights has ended!  It came through a scorcher yesterday and the night did not cool down significantly.  I think today will be the same - predicting worse.  This is the summer I hate - give me winter any day.  Getting warm is one thing cooling down is quite another.  But, that's life........

I wrote most of this blog post yesterday but was unable to publish or save - I also couldn't sign up for Melody's Tuesday's Treasures.  Not sure what was going on - whether it was a google issue, an internet issue or just the computer saying "it's too hot, leave me alone"!!


Sunday, January 8, 2012

More Some Kind of Wonderful

Another two blocks completed.  Love these holidays............

What to do next - some more of these or Farmer's Wife or Dear Jane?  Decisions, decisions........


Some Kind of Wonderful and a Start to Farmer's Wife Quilt

This was my view at breakfast this morning - it's a hard life, isn't it?  Having to sit and look at this while I eat breaky.  

There is something about gum trees - the different colours of the bark, the shape of the branches.  Each one is so unique - just love them.  
The other lovely thing that happened this morning is that a flock of rainbow lorrikeets arrived.  Two of them were sitting on one of our pet bird's cage.  They flew off and and went into our grevillea garden and started to have their breakfast.  They were joined there by about another dozen or so.  Lots of noise and arguing as only rainbow lorrikeets can!  They are the loveliest bird ever.

Now to some work - Another two blocks completed in Some Kind of Wonderful.  And a start to the Farmer's Wife Quilt.  This one has taken so long - but last night was the night!!

Here are some pictures of Some Kind of Wonderful - the stitching has been completed on the suitcase block and I've finished the chocolate block.  I'm about to start on Hot Chocolate and the ice cream!
I've personalised this block to show some of our favourite holiday destinations!

Here are the chocolates!

I discovered the Farmer's Wife Quilt some time last year and ordered the book straight away.  Since then this has been on my to-do list, but got no further.  Before we came on holidays I printed off the templates and glued them to cardboard.  So, last night I decided that I just had to make the start.......

This is Block One - Attic Windows.  Needs a good iron but not bad for holidays!!

Block 2 - Autumn Tints.  Colours haven't come up very well in this photo - I think it looks better is "real life" - but it's proof that i have another one completed!!

These blocks have been fun to do - using Brenda's tips from Dear Jane on how to hand piece blocks and using my silk applique thread which has pieced very well.

When I visited the LQS with Narelle on Thursday I bought two doll patterns - one in a kit.  Forgot to put these on the blog yesterday - so here they are today.  Very cute.

Elle Jane is made of wadding - never used this before in a doll/teddy.  Can't wait to start.  Also I've never used teddy joints before so that will be a big learning curve.

I think the hat was the thing with this one - how cute is that?

We are about to have pancakes for morning tea, so I'd best go.  Home made and very yum!!!

Holidays are so hard to take.........


Saturday, January 7, 2012

Some More SKOW Blocks and meeting a blogging buddy

Firstly, I'm still going with SKOW - determined to be up to date before the end of the holidays - which is only one week away for me.  Then it will be home and getting kids organised for school and an 18th birthday party for our eldest.  Fun, fun, fun!!

Meanwhile, in the here and now, I'm enjoying the opportunity to sew, sew, sew!  My latest blocks:

Jeans block finished!

Finally a photo with the steam!
Add caption

Applique done - stitching today.

I've organised the templates for the blocks due by the end of January.  Hope to get some more stitching done today.

I've been organising both the Dear Jane patterns and the Farmer's Wife templates.  With Dear Jane I've been looking through the EQ7 program and starting the lessons.  Reading Brenda's hints on how to make the blocks.  With the Farmer's Wife templates - they are just about all glued on cardboard and cut out ready to place on fabric.  

I would like to trace some stitcheries while on holidays - will see how time goes.

Meeting Narelle - Narelle and I met in Blogland early in 2011 and we found out that she lives quite close to wear we holiday.  Finally we met in person in Bundaberg on Thursday.  A lovely person - so pleased that we finally met up and we plan to continue to meet each time we are here on holidays.  We had a coffee and a chat and then a wonder around The Quilter's Shack - a fantastic quilting/patchwork shop.  A very pleasant morning.  Narelle had farming and other things to attend to, but we continued in holiday mode with a picnic at the beach and a swim.  Once again a very pleasant day.

We had a hot day yesterday - but have been so lucky that the heat has not continued into the night, so sleeping is still very pleasant.  Hoping it won't be quite that hot today.  Although, I understand that we may be looking at even hotter weather next week.  We've been so spoilt this summer - and I don't want the spoiling to end.

This was where we had a picnic lunch and swim - a very pleasant part of the world.  We're 6 hours from home and 2 of our boys met up with two school friends.  What are the chances?

Off to do some more sewing.........


Thursday, January 5, 2012

Another Day in Paradise

Just loving being on holidays.  No stress, no looking at the time working out who should be where, etc.  Just going through the day.  One of the things we haven't found here is a good bakery - so I've been making bread each day.  No bread maker - just the old fashioned way.  Turning out quite well, too.

We're off to Bundaberg today and a visit to The Quilter's Shack.  It's like a dream - beautiful quilts, fabrics, patterns and all things wonderful.

While I'm there DH is taking kids to the park.  After lunch we'll be off for a swim at Bargara Beach and a BBQ dinner at the beach.

I've been working on Some Kind of Wonderful - still at the Jeans block.  Almost done.  I had a break yesterday to do some more hexies for One Flower Wednesday.

Also started a book I found for 99 cents on-line.  I've downloaded it to my e-reader (a Chrissy present).  It's a Marian Keyes book called "Rachel's Holiday".  Jan suggested some books the other day and one of those was Marian Keyes "Watermelon".  Coincidentally, this book is about the sister of the heroine in "Watermelon".  Only read a few pages - all those tiny hexies are very tiring on the eyes, but I like what I have read so far.

2012 - so much better start to the year than 2011.  Hope it continues.  I was right in thinking that our beautiful mild weather was coming to an end - yesterday was much hotter, but it still cooled down enough last night to sleep well.


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

One Flower Wednesday

After many months of watching from my computer, finally able to participate in One Flower Wednesday.  Thanks Karen for the organising.

Here are my flowers for this week.

These are for my "Insanity" Quilt.  Half inch hexies - 10,000+ pieces in the quilt.  One day I'm going to finish it!!



Finally some photos

Found the camera cord and I've downloaded the photos, so here goes.

This is a stitchery I have been doing for awhile - it's very pretty.

These are the completed stitcheries so far.  Sandi and Tereasa from Homespun and Beautiful suggested the floral background fabric and it has worked so well.

Some Kind of Wonderful - forgot to add the steam but have rectified that.  Unfortunately the second photo didn't work very well.

Another one.  Just saw someone else's block with the spines stitched in and it looked great.  Thinking about it for this one.

First block with stitching!!

Our new baby - Bluebelle.  Just finished breakfast when I took this photo.

Another beautiful day here.  Sun is shining.  We're having another day at home and tomorrow we're heading into Bundaberg.  More sewing today.  A visit to The Quilter's Shack tomorrow.  Can't wait.


Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Some more progress on Some Kind of Wonderful and a new bird in our lives

I was up at 5 this morning feeding the new bird in our lives.  It's a blue quaker - we're just finishing off the hand-raising.  Not sure if it's a boy or girl so I'm thinking of calling "it" 'Bluebelle'.  That way if it's a boy we can shorten it to Bluey and a girl to Belle.  So far things are going well - and we're up to 6 hourly feeds so it's not quite so bad as a younger hatchling!

I merrily took photos of Bluebelle and my latest blocks from Some Kind of Wonderful and now I can't find the cord to attach the camera to the computer.  GRRRRR!  Not going to wake any children to ask the question as I'm enjoying the peace and quiet too much.  Photos will have to come later.

We're still enjoying very mild weather for this time of year.  Been having campfires and sitting around at night talking.  Our friends who came for New Year are leaving today.  But eldest DS and friends of his arrived late yesterday (bringing the bird).  They say the heat will be returning next week so I'm enjoying this hiatus while it lasts.

The other thing that is different this year than other years we've been here is the number of snakes we have encountered!  Not fussed on this new development at all.  Even on the way to the beach on New Year's Day we encountered one.  Bit of a worry with the kids - but we've sat them all down and hopefully made them aware of what to do and how to stay safe.  Lots of mowing and cleaning will continue to ensure that they have less places to hide.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Happy New Year

A little late, but Happy New Year everyone.  We travelled to our block of land near Bundaberg last Friday and friends joined us here on Saturday - so my links to the blogging world was confined to quick looks on my iphone email!!  We spent New Year's Eve sitting around a camp fire.  It was so cold!  Finding the weather very hard to believe for the Christmas/New Year period in this part of Australia.  We ventured to the beach yesterday for a bit of r&r on the first day of the New Year and the wind was blowing so much we could hardly stand on the beach.  Kids still swam though!  We then found a sheltered park and had a lovely bbq dinner.  Once again we sat around the camp fire to complete the first day of 2012.

Based on my theory that whatever you do on the first day of the year, you will do throughout the year - I sewed.  I just HAVE to sew on New Years Day.  So, I have another block completed for Some Kind of Wonderful and another partially completed.  Not a huge amount - but another step on the journey.  Hoping for some more progress today.  And some photos.

Starting out to be another beautiful day in this part of the world.  Cannot believe how cool it is - just incredible for Christmas.  I'm aiming to enjoy it while it lasts!

I love the start of the New Year and closing the door on the old.  For us last year was not the best we've had - with floods (and we weren't affected personally to flooding, just inconvenienced really!!) it was a scary start to 2011 and a series of personal issues followed that created challenges.  However, we survived and everyone's health is good so really we have nothing to complain of.  However, I am looking forward to a great 2012.  As a child I just loved getting my new school books each year.  I would look at all those blank pages and think about all the exciting things that I would be learning in the year ahead.  (I told my eldest DS this and he looked at me in amazement and said "Mum, they can treat that now!")  I look at the New Year in the same way - a fresh new start, and wondering about all the exciting things ahead, new things to learn, new quilts to sew............  Bring on 2012.

Happy New Year Everyone!