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Pixie Post

Updated: 2017-11-12T03:41:25.275+13:00




Dear Judy

Yes, it's about time I wrote.  (I love those leaves you are stitching by the way).

I want to show you this place.  It's a little piece of paradise. It belongs to me and M.   (M is my boyfriend of 4 years.  Did I mention him yet?)


It's a wild bit of eroding coastline.  I love it for its ruggedness. And the view of course.

We've owned it for a year and a half.  It really is painted that crazy turquoise colour.  A real 1950s exterior colour in these parts.

And at least one of us goes there every weekend. It's a less than 2 hours drive from home through some lovely countryside.  Currently lots of lambs and just-beginning-to-fade daffodils.


I shall try and be a better correspondent.  I've missed you.




This used to be my blog that I loved dearly.
I met some good friends here.

I can't believe the date on that last post.

Stay tuned.  Or come back. Or something.
Cos I might just rev it up again.




One day I'm going to buy a caravan.
And park it at a beach.
This one is extraordinary.  It was built in 1937.

you could buy it if you have a spare $33,000 NZD.  I think it's worth it.

It's here, on TradeMe.  Check out the pictures!

You're kidding, right?


Dear Jaqui E

you have got to be kidding.

Pay hard earned cash for these pants, even on sale??.....only 59.95 AUD that is.

The model is - well  -  model-thin and they look awful on her.   So imagine how bad they'd look on a real woman with curves.  Ridiculous.

sorry for the blurry picture.

Happy new year


It's almost 2013 already.

I've been telling everyone this is going to be the year of good health.

But I have a cold.  My ears are ringing and my sinuses are filled with concrete.  It's a  perfect still day and I want to go swimming, but instead I shall throw open the doors and windows and sew.  Eventually the teenagers will get out of bed.

I started last year with gall bladder surgery and ended it with a type 2 diabetes diagnosis.  In between I tore my achilles (just  a tiny little bit) and hurt my back twice , including the worst back injury ever.   Oh and I'm going to see a cardiologist in Jan and Feb.  But I'm pretty sure that will be fine, but good to be sure after 18 years of relentlessly high blood pressure.

I'm pissed off about the diabetes becos I am 'atypical'.  I am active, I am not obese.  But I can get even more active, and I can lose some middle age spread and stave off the prospect of medication for as long as possible.

So I thought if I wrote that all down I could stop stressing about all the things I want to do, and get on with what I can do. 


A couple of new dresses to show you soon.

Kitty is ready to help. 

More Treasures


These beauties are all for sale on Trademe right now.

(image) I love this carpet. There was a similar one in my childhood bedroom.
(image) Have you seen the ripple blanket craze that was doing the blog rounds over the last year or two? Rescue this vintage one and you can have your own.
(image) A Singer featherweight sewing machine. Kindof sewing mecca for quilters. This one looks to be in great condition and it's got a buy now of only $350. Bargain!

I'm bidding on some vintage sewing patterns. I'm not expecting to win them, but I'll show you if I do.

Inviting happiness


(image) During our Christmas trip to the South Island I had more than a few moments appreciating these two (aged 15 and 18) in the beautiful great outdoors. Walking on beaches and in the bush, exploring caves and admiring flowering forests (the Rata was amazing!) isn't something they'll do with me very often these days. And they will never let me take their photographs! So I greatly enjoyed our exploring, and their company. Their sights are set further afield now, and perhaps if I travel with them both again, it will be in Europe. This picture is from the bottom of Trumans Track, near Punakaiki, West Coast, South Island. One of my favourite places.

Here's a lovely post about inviting happiness. Thanks Diane.

How's the garden?



I love these purple beans. They didn't climb as high as expected, and they go green when they are cooked, but I usually eat a couple between the garden and the kitchen. They've been a great crop.

I pick this many strawberries most days, battling the birds and the slugs because I didn't get around to building the strawberry fortress this year. There's lettuce too, all sorts, heaps of it, picked and eaten daily.

Now the garden is becoming overtaken with pumpkins...the vines grow like triffids, fast and strong. There are about 5 plants, self seeded from my compost. I'm going to let them go and see what happens.

There's some beetroot, grown from seed that seems to be doing quite well, and a pitiful display of spring onions. And sweet peas, because I rebelled and planted them along with the beans. They're very pretty and sweet indeed. I was away for 3 weeks during Wellington's finest summer weather, and have not been capable of going near it for the last four weeks, so the weeds (nightshade! wandering willie! dandelions!) are rampant. I continue to be the best fennel grower in the world. Yes Nicola, I still hate fennel.




They're quite nice aren't they? They'd make good beads or something.

There are 16 of them, and they were in my gall bladder. Yuck!

So no wonder it would hurt a bit most days, for the last 6 months or so....but if I'm really honest, for a year or two at least, on and off. And they were probably the cause of that little incident on a plane about 4 years ago. Pain! Luckily (??!!) I was diagnosed in June, in the middle of about 10 days of major pain, when my gall bladder it got itself infected. Oh lordy! It was like being in labour...the pain! The doctors and nurses and their painkilling injections and pills were very good. So then I waited 6 months (almost exactly the time they predicted) on the public waiting list, and I had a text-book straight forward laparoscopic gall bladder removal.

And now, close to 4 weeks on, I feel less like someone has kicked me in the stomach, and more like I've done 200 sit-ups. It's getting better all the time. It's a bit of a miracle cure really. Nice.

(Pointing out research that suggests increased risk of bowel cancer strictly forbidden and all suggestions that fat free diet is even more necessary now shall be ignored in favour of happy icecream eating).

Trade me treasure


This is for sale on trade-me


(image) Isn't it lovely?

It's currently selling for $13.50 and there are no bids.

For crying out loud!! I wonder what a quilt dealer would value it at. I might have to buy this one ... unless you do.

planning not dreaming....


I fell in love with this fabric before Arthur Toye (in Wellington) had it's sale. Now it's reduced to $15 a metre. But I didn't buy it becos I couldn't figure out what I would do with it. It's a sneaky cell phone pic. Take my word for it, the wide spread red, blue, green, yellow stripes on creamy white are gorgeous. It's a little sheer though.
But then I searched about and I found this dress on Polyvore. It's by and the site says it is $76 NZD, but I'm not interested in buying it (even if they would ship to NZ, haven't checked).


I could whip one up with either the Cynthia Rowley pattern by Simplicity, or the New Look 6723 which has just the right princess seamed bodice. I'm not sure it would suit me though, I don't usually go for pooffy skirts (pooffy is so a word!).
(image) Then again, there's this stripe on sale too....which might be a bit more subtle and go well with my new navy blue jacket to wear to work.

So what do you think? Should I just set myself the challenge and make the dress?

Moment Junkie


Now, weddings aren't high on my agenda, (I've never had one!), but I've stumbled across this site that's good for a smile every single day. There's no denying that the wedding day is a day of love and laughter and magic moments.

Here's the proof. Glorious, brilliant photography to make you smile. Check it out.

Moment Junkie



There's always something of interest to be found on Trade Me.....

(image) A collection of vintage sewing patterns....they look to be from the 60s. Very "Mad Men". Alas, too small for me and I really don't need any more too-small-for-me vintage patterns.

(image) A vintage table cloth. Gloriously hand embroidered. Each corner of the cloth is the same. Beautiful bright colours, it must have been in storage for many many years.

(image) A double wedding ring quilt top (my favourite traditional design) incomplete. I suspect the quilt maker is selling it, because the arcs, and pieced wedges have their anatomically correct names...all the pieces are in the sale, it's begging to be finished.

If we don't use the things we are stashing, will they end up being sold for nowhere near their real value on some website?




I have a secret love of two colour quilts.

Look at this one photographed at Quilt Market by Kathy from Pink Quilt Studio.

And even better, look over here, where there are instructions for free from Moda. It's very very clever, I was expecting triangles to cut and piece, but it's made of strips.

Thanks Kathy, I'm inspired!



(image) Completely unrelated picture from perfect weekend in Ngawi recently

Today I have not gone swimming (again!), but am about to paint skirting boards. Yesterday I painted a room, twice. Half spanish white, boring I guess, but looks great with the fireplace and the need-to-be-done-again stripped timber windowframes and the if-only -I-could-afford-to-get-them-polished floorboards. It's a lovely room. Today it will have gleaming white skirting boards, and I'll rehang the cream curtains.

Currently it's my bedroom, but by the end of the day it will be the studio. Music studio. I'm swapping rooms with youngest, who currently resides down stairs in a room just big enough for my queen sized bed.

So youngest is going to move in upstairs, with the drum kit, keyboards, a mixer of very large proportions loaned by the boyfriend, numerous electronic devices which connect to laptops which are completely beyond me but make nice music, two or possibly three guitars and room for a piano which is much desired. He might just squeeze his bed in there too, and a chair from the lounge. His brother is hatching a plan to buy a tv for them to hook up the Wii. I shall have to ban the consumption of food in there, or they may never come out. They say they will have friends around for musical sundays, and apparently we really need some better speakers. And a piano (which may have been mentioned once or a hundred and twelve times recently).

I'm also stripping the wallpaper in my new room. Sealer coat should go on the ancient plaster today. It's going to be light and bright with dusky blue curtains (on sale! at spotlight!) and it will be a bit pretty. Unlike any other spot in this house. Cos it will be all mine. Although the boyfriend and Kitty will be allowed to visit.

Because really, youngest is a musical genius, and his big brother isn't too shabby either. Eddie is a finalist in these awards. Yesterday I took him to be interviewed and record a track for the very formal awards ceremony in a couple of weeks time.

This way I'll get my lounge back. And I'll get a double wardrobe and a pretty, private space. And really, how cool would it have been if your parents had given you a perfect space to pursue your favourite thing when you were a teenager?



On the beach - Hoi An, Vietnam June 2011My food blogging friend back in Wellington for a few days from far away suggests we meet in a cafe. "What's good near you" she asks. I work out that I have eaten out three times since I came home from Vietnam in June. One Vietnamese restaurant on the Tory/Vivian Street corner (it was good, I'll have to go find it's name). The Tinakori Bistro, in a private room with a set menu. Seriously good, greatly enhanced by the company and the superb wine. And Hede, in Cuba Street. Gone a little upmarket with its prices and it's new plywood backed menu sans pictures. Not as good as it used to be, and not as busy either. Shall search out better Japanese option. I don't even go out for coffee much, but have a favourite Mojo in Bond Street, where the owner knows my name, mostly cos of the wine I've drunk there on Friday evenings, but not so much this year. There have been the occasional fish and chip picnics, and some thai takeaways. I'm not counting room service salads in Auckland hotels. They do not count. I buy my lunch maybe once a month. Maybe. Said food blogging friend will now have big grin on her face. I'd suggested Thunderbird in Featherston Street, but I stood her up. Stayed home with my cough and my sneezes. I met someone there a coupla months ago. (another friend from far away!) I liked it. But I drank peppermint tea. Do you eat out? Am I just weird? I like to cook. My favourite cooking happens on Wed (for my boyfriend/partner/significant other what on earth shall I call him?), and on Sunday, slow food usually, for the teenagers. Usually more to my taste than to theirs. I went to Cambodia and Vietnam in June. Oh my! It was heaven. I had the best time. Yes I should blog it. I should.I turned 50 in September. Hooray! I had a birthday party. The last time I did that I was 33.I have grown 6 asparagus spears from my 5 new plants in their brand new bed. It's going to be a great harvest next year.I spent a weekend in Christchurch recently. It was a sobering kindof visit. The roads! The rubble! The displaced persons! The empty houses! The rest of us just have no idea. We must keep on being supportive and strive to understand the difficulties they face, even though it's not headline news any more. I am on the public hospital waiting list to have my gall bladder removed. The anticipated 6 months of waiting are up in January. I expect I won't hear from them til Feb or March, don't you? Nah, it doesn't hurt too much, but I've lost 4 or 5 kilos. When it does it's becos I ate something I shouldn't have (though I didn't think tonites chicken noodle soup would give me a pain - blah!)I made a quilt. my only one for the year. and a dress. I should blog them too.I'm home's very rare these days. I have complete control of the tv and the laptop. I'll probably go to bed early, cos there's nothing on tv. So, what's new with you??The formatting has gone nutso, and my laptop has developed a black line across the bottom third of the screen. yes, I'm definitely going to bed early....[...]



My blog got hijacked.
The Sagittarian alerted me to the fact.
When you went to my url, it flashed the blog up for a second, then went to some random blog setting up site (not blogger).
Happily I was able to fix it, with some help from those people who's answers came up after a trusty google search. I was able to delete the offending code in my setup. I deleted some good things while I was figuring it out. But how did that nasty code get in there???
Double eeeeek!
I have now changed my password too......I hope it doesn't happen to you.



(image) Seriously cool.
So excited I may burst.
Eddie was one of two opening acts for Liam Finn, playing to a sell out audience in Wellington last night.
He played 6 songs, 2 covers, 4 of his own.
His first 7" vinyl on sale at the door, alongside Liam's new album.
The venue is R18, he's 14.5.
He said 'thanks Liam, for letting me play' on stage.
Seriously cool.

Disproportionate pleasure


The vegetable garden is giving me a totally disproportionate sense of achievement and pleasure.

Most nights I pick something for dinner. Salad leaves and spring onions one night. Silver beet and carrots the next. Beetroot and baby leeks will be ready next week. I grew pumpkins! Small, but delicious pumpkins! I even picked a couple of strawberries yesterday, the plants are still flowering. They get every ray of sun that's going in their hillside garden spot, I guess that's why they're so happy. I've let them grow leaders and will plant another row when the bleak weather that is forecast passes. Beans and peas are growing well. I've just planted artichokes.

I'm eyeing the front lawn. It needs some citrus trees at least. And I'm no huge fan of lawn-mowing....

Youngest son, served with garden fresh carrots for the first time a few weeks ago pronounced them "too full of flavour". Sheesh. He's over that now

(image) Vegetable still life photography skills needs some work!

The carrots and silver beet went into a lamb byriani. Delicious.

It's raining, but the cut-everything-down neighbour is building a retaining wall. The timbers are currently overhanging my vege garden. We'll assume he's going to trim them off back onto his own section. Of course he is.

ready for spring!


(image) This is Falstaff, I planted 20 of these.

(image) This is February Gold. I planted 10. These two are in the back garden, near the clothesline and the veges, and near my nice sunny seat.

(image) This is Commanding. I planted 60 of these in the front garden kindof on the edge of a bank. I'll be able to look up at them when I slog up the hill, and down on them from inside the house. The (lovely) neighbours will have a good view of them too.

It's such a battle this gardening lark-wind, water, bugs, neighbours, weeds....
I reckon the daffodils will inspire me to keep on going.

A host of golden daffodils


While most of the blogs I read are celebrating spring and posting pictures of bulbs bursting into life, it's just bulb planting season in my little corner of the world.

I have 100 daffodils to plant. I'll finish planting them today. I have three varieties. I'm going to let them naturalise down the bank on the front lawn, and down a bank on the back lawn, and I'll have some near the front door. I hope the lack of lawn mowing that will result won't look too scruffy.

I bought them from here.

I've planted some bluebells under a tree too.

The pesky cut-everything-down neighbours have a brand new baby girl. It's nice to hear that brand new baby cry out in the garden.

Hmm, blogger won't let me show you any pics. I'll try later.

Red red red


(image) Ohh, that's right, I have made a red quilt recently. Completed in Dec 2010 for someone's birthday.
An important birthday with a '0' in it.
That's me on the right, birthday girl on the left.
Hand delivered to Christchurch in time for the birthday party.
Lovely weekend.
Love this pic!

Technical details......It's a 16 patch. 11 blocks by 11. two inch squares. Huge! But looked amazing on their beautiful bed. There are some stars in the middle. Kind of hidden, secret stars. One for each decade.

Lovely bamboo and cotton new favourite. Stipple quilted.

ohhh look, do you think the blog might be alive again???

I need to go to New York


Really. I do.
Want to come?(image) At the American Folk Art Museum there is an exhibition of 650 quilts. Red and white quilts. All from the collection of one woman.

It closes tomorrow.

making me laugh


Blackbird often makes me laugh. She linked to this post which is laugh-out-loud funny, and I wish I'd found it a couple of weeks ago.
This woman, says Blackbird, is genius at telling other people how to live their lives. How to get over a broken heart in 7 easy steps.

And completely coincidentally yesterday someone left a new comment on this post of my very own from 2006 Letter to a Heartbroken friend. What good advice!! and that gorgeous friend is coming to visit me soon. Yay!

(Please note, my heart wasn't actually broken, more of a tiny crack that damaged my hopefulness and optimism, it's pretty well healed over now).

Sunday thinking....


I'm thinking about this post by Chris Brogan (found via Lisa Call)

"We all work a lot of hours. Are we actually doing anything? Is what you’re doing worth it? Are you doing something that’s going to grow the world? Are you adding to the solutions that are out there?

Or is it noise?"

I'm lucky in my day job, I'm doing lots that's "going to grow the world". But what am I doing otherwise? I'm not doing a very good job of growing my own world. I get mad at myself becos I spend Sundays exhausted most of the time. I get a bus (I don't have a car - madness!) at 8am, to get to the beach at 8:30. We swim for about an hour these days, the water is getting warmer at last! We go to breakfast. I get the bus home and I walk up the hill about midday. I eat lunch and I potter about and the day disappears in the dull old domestics. My gorgeous boys come back to me this day usually, and I like to make a big sunday dinner that we share, at the table, with knives and forks and even candles sometimes. But I have this nagging feeling that I don't do enough with Sundays. Do you?

What do you do on Sundays?