About Me

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My name is Kaye and I am 58 years old. Unbelievably to me, at my age, I have now just embarked upon my third career - as a History Education Consultant! I love to cross stitch and quilt, especially with my kittens, Furio and Milo "helping" me. I also love to read, I have a passion for history and I have been cooking since I was about 12 - move over Junior Masterchef! So, this blog, which started out as a cross stitch blog sometimes morphs into a reading journal or a history lesson (sorry, I used to be a secondary teacher before I became a publisher and now a consultant) or a post about my cooking mojo. Whatever it is, this blog is alway about me, my family and my life here in Eaglemont, Victoria. I have been happily married for over 30 years to the most wonderful man and we are blessed with three beautiful grown up children.

My fellow stitching kittens

Monday, 29 February 2016

Small SAL - February Check in ....

Time for the second Smalls SAL check in for the year.  What is the Smalls SAL?  It is quite simple, really - it is run by Heather of Silver Lotus (the SAL mama). Here are the main details:

  1. Stitch a small every month. You get to decide what a small is for you. 50×50 stitches? 100×100 stitches? It’s up to you. You just need to be able to get it done by the check-in day. (WIP smalls that you complete in time for the check-in are great too!) You pick your design, I do not provide designs.
  2. Post a picture of your completed small (stitching done, but the actual finishing is optional) on the last Thursday of every month, with the exception of November, which will be the last Wednesday.

First up  this month is Deck the Halls by Prairie Schooler which is  my January Music piece for the Christmas Ornie SAL, which also doubled up for my Prairie Schooler SAL and is also a DUCJFC 2016 piece - #3/31 finishes for 2016 for the challenge to honour Debbie's memory.




Deck the Halls by Prairie Schooler, Book #81

32 ct Willow Linen, DMC threads.

My second Smalls for the month was this little piece which I picked up as a UFO from last year's DUCJFC challenge and finished on the day I found out I had been made redundant - it was so soothing to stitch out my shock and upset - you can read about all of that here, if you wish.

"Ho, ho, ho" by Pineberry Lane

Next, is my heart which I stitched for the Secret Sweetheart Bloghop hosted by Jo from Serendipitous Stitching.
This is also finish #4/31 for DUCJFC2016.

Sweet Heart 
Joyeux Noel booklet
Blackbird Designs
28 ct Cocoa linen
Various specialty threads from my stash

... and next up here is my February Snow Finish also for the Christmas Ornie SAL and is my finish #5/31 for DUCJFC2016.\

Fa La La
Freebie from Plum Pudding Needleart 
(unfortunately the link no longer seems to work)
Unknown linen
Own choice of DMC and Valdani floss.

... and lastly, I was really struggling this month to choose a design for the Hallowe'en Ornie SAL, but then I saw the very "sweet" Pumpkin Man stitched by my dear friend, Noni, for this SAL and I was hooked.

So, may I introduce you to a second Pumpkin Man?

Pumpkin Man
Prairie Schooler
JCS Halloween Ornie Mag 2015
28 ct linen
Assorted DMC and specialty threads

I am quite taken with him, thanks again, Noni, for the inspiration.
This, is finish #6/31 for DUCJFC2016 (so, I am hoping that I am on track to finish 31 pieces this year in honour of Debbie).

hugs, Kaye

P.S. Of course, as this is a PS design - it counts as a finish for the Prairie Schooler SAL as well - yay!

So, that is it for me for another month of Smalls.

Please check out what everyone else is doing by visiting here.


Thursday, 25 February 2016

FNSI, FF, IHSW and the Weekend Round Up ....

Well, again I had to start my Friday Frolics and FNSI stitching on Thursday evening as this week TraderVic and I were going to HTC to see the first play of the season, which if you scroll down you can read about shortly.

So, I randomly picked up this piece, which again I had started last year for DUCJFC.

This is where I left it last year:

... and after a Friday night of stitching....


... and then I spent the rest of the little time I had for stitching on the weekend on it for IHSW and got this far:


.... and now on to all of the fun things I did this past weekend:


Pre-theatre dinner beforehand was at our usual Greek restaurant, Byzantine.  I had the seafood platter and boy, it must have been good as you can see there was not one skerrick left!


Then it was down the road to view the first play of the HTC season:

It was rip roaringly funny!  

Here is the blurb about the play from the HTC website:

About the play

1939 and Hollywood is abuzz. Legendary film producer David O. Selznik has halted the shoot on his epic Gone With the Wind. The script is dreadful; the director clueless. Selznik has just five days to rewrite the script or the production will shut down. Determined to succeed, he locks himself in his office with a new director and new screenwriter – with only bananas and peanuts for sustenance – and the marathon creative session begins.

This hilarious farce perfectly captures the true life madness behind the scenes of one of the most successful films of all time.

If you get the chance to see it, I can highly recommend it!


Started off with breakfast with our very good friends, Linda and Terry at a local cafe, Mr Pebbles.
I had poached eggs with haloumi, pumpkin bread and rocket pesto, it was delicious and quite filling but that was okay as I was planning to skip lunch.


... and the reason I skipped lunch was because I went with my very, very dear friend, Kim to see a matinee of Ghost the Musical.



Now, Kim and I had lots of fun, as you can see above (and there were a couple of yummy cocktails each involved, too, I can tell you!) but I would have to say that the musical itself was fairly ordinary. The story is great but the songs were just blah! really, except for the iconic Unchained Melody, of course - which they managed to butcher and don't get me started on how they botched the also iconic pottery wheel scene!  I think that Kim and I did a better job - lol! 

After the show, we met the husbands for dinner at Trattoria Emilia, for some very authentic Italian food and then we hit White Night, this is when the city is alive with light shows and entertainment all night from 7pm to 7am - quite a sight, really!  We headed home about 10pm - no all nighters for us!




We saw cute cat videos at ACMI


A giant golden monkey climbing the Melbourne Town Hall.

... and other great sights.....



Started with my usual early morning walk with Marie and the Sunday Dog and then I popped over to see my Dad, do some shopping for him and catch up with DSister2 for her birthday:

.... and then, if all of this was not busy enough, TraderVic and I then went to see Deadpool in the late afternoon at our favourite cinema, The Rivoli.

My review of this film is that it is irreverent, quite violent, crude in parts but fun!

...finally, the weekend's shenanigans are over so let's skip to Tuesday:

So, I am home on the home stretch now, with Lizzie, my piece for my Tudor Tuesdays SAL blog
Last week:

This week:


Maybe one more Tuesday will do it?

... and that is me, signing off after yet another marathon post (sorry, I have now being writing this post since Saturday morning!!!!!  I hope that you got this far and haven't fallen asleep with boredom - lol!)


Thursday, 18 February 2016

So close to a finish now ......

Well, I had to shift my Tudor Tuesday Stitching to Wednesday evening (due to social commitments, which you can read all about here) but that was okay as I managed to stitch heaps even while beating DD hands down in Scrabble! 

Before pic:


After pic:


I am thinking that maybe one more Tuesday may even do it! Yay!


P.S. I got up this morning in the dark and put my shoes on.  When I got downstairs to the kitchen, look what I found:


Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Weekend Round up ....

[Sorry, this is now a rather belated weekend round up as it is now Wednesday, but time seemed to run out on Monday, when I started writing this post and who knows what happened to Tuesday? - lol!  Anyway, here goes......]

Thursday evening:

I started my weekend stitching early this weekend (on Thursday evening) as I knew that TraderVic and I were going to a House concert on Friday night, so this week for Friday Frolics ... a languishing Chrissie Ornament came out to play....




JBW Designs
Santa's Sleigh Ride
28 ct white linen
Mixture of DMC and WDW floss

This piece was started (and never touched again until now) on 6 January last year as one of my pieces for Debbie's Ultimate Crazy January/February Challenge (DUCJFC), you can read about it all on this post.

However, other WIPs were calling my name, so after just one evening of stitching, Santa and his sleigh have been put aside for other projects.

Friday evening:

The artist at the House concert was Scott Cook, an amazing Canadian folk singer and balladeer who gave us an amazing evening of great music.

If you ever get the chance to hear him play, I can highly recommend it.

I thought that I had better get on with stitching my Christmas Ornie SAL piece for Feb's theme of "Snow".  

Last month the lovely Loretta, stitched a great freebie from Plum Pudding Needleart (unfortunately, the link to the freebie seems to have been suspended) for the January Music theme, luckily for me it also fitted in nicely with the Snow theme for February. You can see Loretta's great finish here.

So, this is where I am up to today (after stitching on it both Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday) - nearly done!

... and, of course, this is a DUCJFC stitching piece as well.

Saturday night, TraderVic and I went to dinner in Prahran and then a movie with DD.  We saw "Brooklyn", which we all loved.  Such a beautiful film and Saoirse Ronan was excellent in the main role.


Well, Sunday was Valentine's Day, of course. So TradeVic and I went on a double date with our best friends, Kim and Gino, to a lovely Italian restaurant, La Camera,  next to the Yarra River at Southgate.  We sat out on the terrace on a perfect Melbourne's summer evening and then had a lovely walk along the riverside afterwards and then found one of Melbourne's many, many cafes for a coffee.




Well, not much happened on Monday, so let's skip to Tuesday (work during the day) but then lots of fun in the evening, as I went out on a girl's night with my dear friends, Heather and Franca for dinner at The European and then to see the marvellous Dawn French in Thirty Million Minutes.

The food at the restaurant was absolutely delicious, this is lamb ravioli, with sides of heirloom carrots with dukkah and labne and a witlof, pear and walnut salad - yummo!




Dessert was Peach Eton Mess......


Waiting for Dawn!


So, I would have to say, this past weekend was a corker! 

Wishing you all a great rest of the week.


Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Very quick GG post.....

... not much to report on the Gifted Gorgeousness front for this month.

I have been stitching on The Queen's Sampler by Plum Street Samplers for the Tudor Tuesday SAL. Luckily, I have remembered that this was gifted to me by another sweet stitcher several years back (although at this stage I cannot remember who that lovely person was - another senior moment - oh no!).

Here are my progress pics on this piece over the last couple of weeks:

This is from two weeks ago:

One night of stitching:

A second Tuesday of stitching:

If you want to check out what everyone else stitched for Gifted Gorgeousness this month, please visit here and if you want to find out what GG is all about, try this link.


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