31 December, 2014

My Books of 2014

I'm a slow reader.  Always have been.  I also don't get much time to sit & read during the day so my only time to read is when I go to bed.  So it's not a lot in a year.  But all the same, I am quite pleased with my little list for the books I did manage this year.  Some good & some OK.  I don't think there were any really bad ones.  If there were I think I would have stopped reading.

  • I Remember You - Harriet Evans
  • That Liverpool Girl - Ruth Hamilton
  • Perfect Match - Sinead Moriarty
  • Letters From Skye - Jessica Brockmole
  • The Rose Petal Beach - Dorothy Koomson
  • Cupcakes at Carrington's - Alexandra Brown
  • Hope Was Here - Joan Bauer
  • The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
  • Brown Owl's Guide to Life - Kate Harrison
  • The Bookstore - Deborah Meyler
  • The Ice Cream Girls - Dorothy Koomson
  • The World Beneath - Cate Kennedy
  • Love Walked In - Marisa de los Santos

My favourite for the year was definitely The Icecream Girls by Dorothy Koomson.  Although not an easy read because of the subject matter, it was gripping & painful to read in parts.  I have read most of her books & this is one of the best.

I have such a stack lined up for 2015 so it will be interesting to see what I actually manage & what suits my moods & tastes at the time!  I am slowly getting through the stack on the book shelf.  I then take them to the second hand book shop or the op shops.  No shortage of new books coming my way though that's for sure.

30 December, 2014

End Of Year Finish List

My list of all the things that I wanted to see finished this year isn't looking too bad.  I have had it there in front of me all year.  It was good.  I had struggled previously with trying to remember things I wanted to do or had partly done.  It just saved "clutter" in my head.  I have enough going on in my mind without lists like this taking up space too!

I'm quite pleased.  Quite a few big jobs completed.  Still more to do & maybe I can dig a little further in my quilting stuff for an older one.  Hmmm...  Progress is being made on a couple of other things on the list but they aren't finished...  getting there though.  They might make it to the finished list next year!

Time to start on the new list!

  • Finish off pieced FG Table topper
  • Quilt & Bind Reunion Quilt
  • Finish Hats that are cut out
  • DJ's Birth Sampler
  • Start DJ's Applique Quilt Top
  • DJ's Cross Stitch Stocking
  • Fairy Cross Stitch
  • Quilt & Bind Birdie Quilt
  • Crochet - Ripple Blanket
  • DONE - 6 Mill Hill Beaded Ornaments
  • DONE - Knitting Vanadium
  • DONE - Quilt & Bind Stack & Slash Quilt top
  • DONE - Quilt Top Assembled of Happy Sun Blocks
  • DONE - Downton Crochet Blanket
  • DONE - Quilt & Bind Happy Quilt
  • DONE - Quilt & Bind Stu's quilt
  • DONE - Quilt & Bind BJ's animal quilt
  • DONE - BJ's Quilt Top using Embroidered Pictures
  • DONE - Quilt & Bind Tractor quilt

I think of all of these, the Tractor quilt is one of my favourites.  I know DJ loves it.  It's hardly been off his bed since I got it back from work where it hung for a few months!

29 December, 2014


Christmas has been & gone.  We now have a couple of weeks of Stuart being home on holidays.  I still have to work my normal days but that's OK.  We can spend a bit of time doing a few other activities.  

Sunday was a good day to start.  The Honey Shop was one place I had wanted to visit for a while as I had been told it was interesting for children with the insides of a beehive that they could see in & things like that that are educational for them.  It was quite interesting.  A shop full of more bee paraphernalia than you could ever imagine existed!  Also tasting of all the different varieties of honey & there must have been about 20 different things to try!   Icecream was the only thing DJ wanted to try though.  We had those on our way out.  lol  

On the way to our next stop we came across the salmon ponds which we made the detour too.  That wasn't as good as it could be.  It has a lot of potential but was a bit of a let down.  Either way, the boys enjoyed feeding the fish, walking to the waterfall & around the property of wetlands.  

I was looking forward to lunch!  We took the boys to a 50's diner.  So cool.  No pictures allowed of inside though & I thought they were going to tell me off a couple of times but they didn't.  I did try to keep it to a few pics of the boys in the end as tempted as I was to take some inside.  Full of burgers, fries & shakes we headed off to the park.

This old train was in a park in the town that we were in for lunch.  The boys thought it was pretty good.  Stuart & I on the other hand are disappointed about the whole way things have evolved in parks.  When we were both small we used to go to the same park (not together) & play on the train too.  In those days you could climb all over it.  Over the front, on top!  Now it's all caged in & you can go in the cab to drive.  That's it.  

Another stop on the way home to see the cheese factory & do a little tasting there.  There was a small herd of pretty cows too that needed a picture.  

It was a nice day, beautiful weather & a good day playing tourist, showing the boys some interesting things!  

28 December, 2014


A portrait of my boys once a week for a year!  

BJ - never in a million years are you going to drink all that!  

DJ - Milkshake in an icecream cup!  What could be cooler!  

Wow, we made it every week for a year!  

27 December, 2014

So This Was Christmas

Much excitement, loads of food, lots of good times.  

Now recovering from the 24 days of anticipation & preparation that seems to have hit after the big event has passed.  Hope your day was fun filled, family filled & festive!  

Best wishes to you all.

26 December, 2014

Elf Finale

Been captured by pirates & put in the tower.

Reindeer & Douglas hopped in the sleigh & the cars took them for a ride.

Before Douglas left he did an extra spot of decorating.  

He left with Santa on Christmas night.  The boys enjoyed his company again.  

22 December, 2014

Game Nights

Lots of games seem to be taking place at night!

Sack racing in the rumpus room.

A game of "Tumbling Monkeys" that isn't quite working out as it should.  

Douglas put streamers up over the boys bedroom doors so they had to break through in the morning.  They thought that was pretty cool!  

Parachuting, but not well.  Got caught on the light.

21 December, 2014


A portrait of my boys once a week for a year.

BJ - being cool with a bow.
DJ - concentrating & feeling clever without dropping the egg in the race.  

Linking up for the second last one of the year!  

20 December, 2014

What A Great Festive Start

In our little village by the river, every year the local volunteer Fire Brigade come around on the weekend before Christmas & they have a special guest with them - Santa.  He stops around the neighbourhood & visits all the boys & girls & hands out bags of lollies.  (70 this morning!)

What a great haul this was.  

We were 2 doors over from our place, with 5 families altogether.  Three of them have children in BJ's class so we all see each other all year.  But all do go to the local school except for the littler ones of course.    

We stayed all morning after Santa left & then had a few treats like icy poles!  

Presents to open!

Egg & spoon race.  DJ thought this was pretty cool.  He'd never done this before & soon got the hang of it.  

Even a 3-legged race.  

A barbeque lunch, water play under the sprinkler, a pinata packed full of more sugar than 13 children should eat (so I had better help out!), so much sun, so much water & sunscreen, 

Oh & some good dessert!  

What a great start to Christmas.  Such a great day for a children's Christmas party with some great friends.  

17 December, 2014

Elf Treats

Douglas bought the boys a little something.  
Badges that have their names & they flash!  Very cute.  
(technically they came from England via one aunt, but Douglas is getting the credit)  

Alright, so Douglas is fishing in the little fish tank!  He didn't catch anything all night!  

Douglas sat up all night eating chocolate out of the sleigh.

Free candy canes for clean rooms apparently!

Douglas got hold of BJ's Christmas ornament that he brought home yesterday from school.  

14 December, 2014


A portrait of my boys once a week for a year.

Both tired out at either end of the couch at the end of the weekend & after another family swim. 

Linking up for the project