Ok, so a little late with this actual post, but Merry Christmas to all!!! I hope everyone had a fantastic time and Santa brought them all they wanted!

We made a last minute decision to head down to a property at Agnes Waters (we only had 4 kids with us, so it was a little easier to just up, pack a few bags and leave!!).....SIL Mum and Stepdad's place. It poured down rain the night of the 23rd, so were at odds whether we wanted to camp out in the rain. BUT we made the trip and set up camp in the very overcast afternoon. Christmas Eve wasnt too bad...just a few drizzles....but Chrissy day was fantastic!! Very overcast, but not hot, humid and awful, like so many other Christmases I have known!

Tea that night was a lovely, big Red Jew that Pete bought from the fish markets just before we left......bloody lovely fish!!! It fed 6 kids and 10 adults (I think that the 4 dogs got a little each, too) and we were still picking from it when everyone had had a plate full! It is tradition for them not to eat red meat on Chrissy Eve, so it was a fitting meal....and very filling!!

The kids had a fantastic time opening their pressies up in camper in the morning before Christmas. As SIL's whole family were there, we thought it best to do that first then head over to the house for brekky. Brekky was VERY simple, with vegemite on toast, cereal and the usual non-cooked stuff.....no bacon and eggs and no dishes to wash up (used plastic plates!!).

About 10:30am came some nibblies as well as some more visitors! Christmas certainly IS the one time of year where I eat and eat all day and dont feel guilty!! After lunch, we all had a rest and everyone was back up by 4 or 5pm. SIL's Mum was a little under the weather the whole time, so it did her some good. I just hope she doesnt/didnt pass the flu onto anyone else!!

Heaps of video was taken over the days, but not many photos, so I can only show you guys a couple! Bubbles were the theme for the day......there is a bubble machine on top of the chest freezer, there and the kids were chasing them and having a HEAP of fun! See the sky in the background? Yep....that is what it was like ALL day!! AND windy!!

Here is SIL entertaining the kids with one of those bubble wands! They really loved the huge bubbles from it! Well....when the wind wasnt blowing them apart, anyway! She DID manage to get one or two off whole, though....so all good!
I have been appreciating nature, of late. I love my digital camera and I am taking photos whenever and wherever I can. I truly live in a beautiful part of this world and I grew up taking it for granted! Over the last couple of years (I would say about 5-7), this area has really grown.....as in new industries have cropped up, therefore lots more new people have moved here to get jobs.

I love this time of year! Not only is it hot (my favourite weather), but the days are, mostly, beautiful, crisp, clear days. I grew up in a small community (here), where there was basically NOTHING for kids to do, but go to the beach, over someone else's place or the like. Most of my friends didnt have a computer or any of the gaming machines available of the time (I was one of the lucky ones with an Atari....remember them?). We (Bro and I) had to HOUND our parents for a video machine!

Although this place has changed lots (bush area bulldozed to make room for more subdivisions, etc), there are still things that have not changed. Nature, for example, is still the same in most areas. Since we have an Aluminium plant, they have to have a 'buffer zone' between them and 'civilisation' so if any fallouts happen, we are, basically, protected. Mind you.....if one of the Lines were to blow, then we would ALL be in for it! But, that would only basically happen if someone COMPLETELY fucked up, so is highly unlikely.

Anyway....here are some photos that I have taken over the last couple of weeks....just so you know what I am talking about!

The sky one evening...loved the way the sun was playing with the clouds!

Our two resident Kookaburras. They had a baby, but s/he has now left the nest and they all alone, again. I found their nest the other day. It is visible from our back verandah and I missed all the comings and goings!!

The walk down to the beach is not far.....couple 100 metres....and this is in between!! This is what we found today! a see of green foliage, with pink lillies poking their heads up everywhere!

A flower in the greenery on the side of the path to the beach.....quite common, but fitted in with my 'theme' for today! An open Pippy........just something that caught my eye. Not something you see too often down there, either!

While the kids were swimming, today, I took these. The first is a shot to the left of where I was standing......huge sparse water in between me and the boat (the white thing in the middle) and then an island. 2nd is across the mouth of the river, directly in front of me.....mainland is that far away! hehe. 3rd is a shot of down the river towards the bridge. No, this is not the way onto this island........it is actually the main way to the next town (which is just across the bridge).
I cant BELIEVE it!! There are just 6 days to go!!! OMG!! Where HAS the time gone??? Seems I had better pull my finger out and sew like mad! There are just sooooo many things that I want to make and do.....and sooo little time! BUT, considering that I only started making things a little over 4 weeks ago, I dont think I have done too bad, myself.

I am going to make myself a list of things to do, anyway. So here it is -

Complete those door hangers - add ribbon to top, find a good stick for each and add string to that to hang.

Fix up D's cushions - the quilting is coming apart in places where I inserted the stuffing (have learnt I should make the opening on the sides...not the bottem or top), so sew them up!

Complete D's tableware - Just the backing to sew up and turn right side out, iron and top stich around the edges.

Start on J's bag - cut out, so just needs to be sewn up!

Hopefully, I get all this done, today! The babies are going to daycare and, because Monday didnt go to plan (long story, but a waste of a morning!!), I plan on sitting down with the girls at the sewing machine and teaching them, today!
Over at Crafty Mamas, I recently took part in our annual Christmas SWAP. This year was a secret santa swap. I received my package yesterday!! It came at JUST the right time! I spent most of the afternoon in town and picked up the babies from daycare a little late, so they were a little ratty. The package was JUST the right thing to settle them down a little before I had to put them in the bath and prepare tea!

I, honestly, cant thank my Secret Santa enough! She has completely spoilt me! Anyway, here are some photos:

The whole package

These are a couple of singlets and a sling for the new bub. A little felted pouch, some Pooh ribbon, zig-zag trim, lacey trim, velvet ribbon and 2 tea towels with a Chrissy tree embroidered and a little star button on top.

3 pieces of GORGEOUS fabric! Weez has already claimed the butterfly material!

A little book on quilting and a stack of fat quarters. some excellent patterns in that book!! I might just have to try my hand at it sometime soon!

AND a sling bag! It holds a HEAP of things! At the moment, it is holding all this stuff, PLUS has room for more!! I am LOVING the colour of it!!

Now that Tracey has hers, I can post a pic of what I sent her! Clockwise from left is a fabric covered lever arch folder with pens; a notebook, tablecloth (I was thinking dresses or skirts with it, but what she does with it is her own!), buttons and ribbon; a pin cushion and hand needle case to match the folder; some patches/scraps of fabric....perfect for applique; and a Cuddlepot and Cuddlepie iron on motif.

I actually meant to put in some display pockets and some dividers in the folder, but I totally forgot!! She has already indicated what she will be using it for, so I am glad that she likes it all!! This photo is actually Tracey's, because, as usual, I forgot to take a photo of it before I sent the bloody thing off!!
Well....it is the start of the holidays and we DO have Pete's kids here.....BUT......Pete is away for the next couple of days!!!!! He has taken the two older boys (Lenny and J-Man) with him and is working a whole 6-7 hours away! LMAO......not something I would normally be happy with, but, for some unknown reason (could be his bad mood on the weekend) I AM glad!!

The babies are at daycare, today, and I DID have heaps planned for the girls and I to do, today - like start teaching them how to sew (giving them an early Chrissy pressie), painting some things for Chrissy pressies and the like - but, it turns out that Pete needs me to do some work, this morning, so they are being put off......just for a little while. We are headed into town this arvo to visit a friend, so I plan on cruising through the paperwork and having it finished on time, so we CAN get some things done!

Our weekend was GREAT!! Saturday started off a little rocky, with Pete getting shirty at the kids while we went out to garage sales and the like, but all was well after a very quiet drive up to Yeppoon (quiet, because the babies were asleep in the back and the kids were in the very back of the car and we couldnt hear them, coz my car is a little noisy when going long distances - picture no air con, windows down and wind rushing through the car!). He seemed to get over himself and enjoy the afternoon.....even though he SAYS that he HATES getting together with his family. The kids had fun in the pool, although Bubba pushed the limits a little and stepped off the edge to the deep end (they were in the shallow part - more like the spa bit, but not actually separate from the main pool)......just checking that he COULDNT reach, like Mummy said, I spose!

Yesterday, we had lunch with my Dad, Bro and SIL. Bro and SIL are moving out from across the road (they have bought their own house over the other side of town), so I saved them some bother and made them some lunch, because I could not help out any other way.....something about me being pregnant and picking up heavy objects PLUS all the kids wanting to follow me over there!! After lunch, I went over to my friends' place and spent a little time with her. Her parents are up and are like parents to me, so it was great to see them, too.......the pool was just a bonus.

No crafting done on the weekend. Just a few quick and easy sewing projects on Friday night. But the social time with others (besides direct family) was excellent!!
Santa came to visit the kids last night!! Every year, the Apex club in this area (with the help of a local car dealership) dress a bloke up in a Santa suit and pack him onto the back of a trailer and he hands out lollies to the kids. He has a bell and sounds very much like the Home Ice Creamery Van, but the "Ho Ho Ho" makes the difference!

This year, he handed out lollypops, red skins and a few more lollies (all wrapped, to avoid germs, I spose). Bubba was all excited, until he pulled up! I had to pick him up, because he would not go to him by himself. Once he saw the lollies being handed out, though, Santa was his best friend!

Here they all are, waiting for him to come down the street....in their night time glamour...hehe.

And here he is!! FINALLY!!
I got in and made some things this week! So........3 things off the list of things to make/do!!

Here are two door organisers.

I might just keep this one for our room! The patterned material was my Mum's and the backing material is from an unknown source, originally....but is from my stash. The lining I got a couple of months ago at the op shop!

This will be going in one of the kids rooms - most likely the boys. This material is two sheets from the op shop and the lining is the same as the one above. Plenty more material in the sheets to make some more things out of!!

These are cushions I made for a good friend of mine. They were originally placemats with the colours going in stripes, then the design changed to this one. When I was turning them the right side out, I figured they looked better as cushions! Too long and skinny to be placemats!

After talking to my friend's kid this morning, she said that she would like something purple for her room, so her door organiser will be the print in the top photo with a purple backing on it! I am also making her a little duffle bag, so she can carry things around in, too....so I think I had better pull my finger out and do them!!

I have also decided to make those placemats for my friend, just in slightly different colours. The fabric is actually sample blocks from sofas (you know....you go into a furniture store and see what sofa you want and then choose which fabric you want from the samples?). I got them off eBay and they are great! Perfect size to do little projects with! They are just a little too easy to fray, though and, for me being just a beginner sewer, I found that a hassle and had to hold myself back from snipping the threads (which, ultimately, made things worse!).

This week has also been a pretty stressful week! Monday was the most stressful, with talks not going too well with a certain person. I then went to go into town and ran over a dog!! I managed to fix my friends' computer, though!! So ended up well.

Tuesday was pretty 'blah' with me being at home with the 3 little ones. All up a very good day with them and making SOME progress on pressies from them, but pretty 'blah'.

Wednesday, I had to go into town, again......to redo my scan. Some of the pictures from the last one didnt exactly turn out right and it didnt worry me that I had to go in there and do it again (I love seeing/hearing bub whenever I can!)......it was just that it was such a hot day!! I ran around all morning, taking Moo to her little concert at the retirement village, then my Bro to the doc. That was all good.....while I was moving!! When I stopped still, I realised just HOW hot it was!!

Yesterday was pretty cruisey, though and today looks like it is going to be, too, so a great end to the week!!
I told the girls on Crafty Mamas that I would make up a tute for these and then promptly forgot about them!! So sorry, girls, but here it is!! This is not EXACTLY how I made them, but how I learnt through sewing them!

Cloth nappies. I used towelling nappies that I found - very luckily - at an op shop. If you are using new ones, I suggest that you wash them first in hot water and, maybe, dry them in the dryer, so they pre-shrink.
Flannel material. Again, I used a plain cot sheet that I got from the op shop. And, again, if you are using a new one, I suggest that you wash it first....etc. Any other type of absorbent material will work well, too, I spose!
Cotton material. In any print that you like.

Step one.
I find that cloth nappies - especially the towelling ones - are different sizes, depending on the manufacturer, so following this step will make the burp cloth a little more uniform to the rest of them, should you have a couple from different manufacturers, like I did.

Take your nappy and fold it into three sections. Take the measurements from the middle section and this will be the measurements for your outer material. Do not unfold! You will need this for the next step!

Step two.
From these measurements, cut out a piece from your flannel material that is a little smaller each side. You may like to cut out one large piece (doubling, tripling or whatever to maximise absorbency) From my cot sheet, I managed to get 4 inners out of 1/2 the sheet (by folding it in 1/2, then 1/2, then 1/2, cutting out and then folding this piece to have 3 layers....I think! When I make another and put the photos up, I will edit if otherwise).

Step three.
Take this piece and centre it on the folded nappy. No need to be exact, here......the outer layer will cover any mistakes (as I found out). Pin and sew down each side to stabilise. You may like to do the top, too....depending on how close it actually comes to the top! Mine were a little skewed on it and were a little shorter, so I sewed the ends, too.

Step four.
Cut out your outer material, adding on a seam allowance from the measurements. Fold and press in the edges to make a hem on each side and end. Centre this over the top of your inner and sew in place. You MAY like to double stitch each end.......it is entirely up to you

Step five.
Take your ribbon and place it down the side of the outer material, measuring how much you need and adding a little to fold under each end. Pin in place and sew as close to the outer edge on each side as possible. I suggest sewing the inside of the ribbon first, because I found that, after sewing the outside, the inner material has a bad habit of popping out of the ribbon! Then again, I used a thin ribbon and centred it on the edge of the fabric, so it was BOUND to happen!

There you have it!! A very nice burp cloth and not just a plain old nappy!!

Some extra notes:
This is NOT how I made mine! But is an easier way than what I did (and what I will be following in future)!!

If you are lucky to have those premade nappies (the ones that you can find with the padding already in the middle, then 1/2 your job is already done!! Just take measurements and follow Barb's tute, here!

The placing of the outer fabric is totally up to you! You may like to place it just inside the outer edge (which is hemmed, doubled over and, therefore, harder to sew through) or have it going to the outside edge. You may also like to have a little of the towelling to each side when folded, like mine.....like I said - TOTALLY up to you!
Here is one of those bags that I was talking about the other day! I completed this last night. I will be working on the other one when I get a couple of other projects completed!! I have WAY too many 1/2 done that need attention, so will stop ALL new projects until they are finished!!


I did blanket stitch around the outside and straight stitch around the star, crown and flowers...all in similar colours. The bottem of the skirt I stitch with a reddish colour. After doing that, I decided that the frog could stay the way that it was.......got a little impatient and just wanted to finish the job off, I spose!!!


These are a little too skinny for my liking, but, since they are for little girls, I dont think they will mind too much at all!! There will always be something to put in them, hey?
My "baby" turned 12 today! I just cant believe it!! 12? Where DOES the time go? i know that is a question that ALL parents ask, eventually, but it is one that just HAS to be asked, hey?

He woke this morning and promptly counted how many punches he was expecting he would get from his friends (yes, I sent him off to school) - 72 in total! I did not have the heart to add in a couple more, for old times' sake!

So, tonight will be spent with him cooking his fave meal. We dont have any sweets in this house, so there wont be a cake of any sort, but I DID make some very small cupcakes this morning with the little ones.

I started a new sewing project yesterday! Well, 2, actually. I found some rubber backed curtain fabric at the op shop on Friday and planned on using one of the designs on a little tote bag for Weez for Chrissy. I measured up the design and worked out what size the little bag should be and decided to cut it out and applique it on the front and back (when I get some photos, this will all become clearer, I promise). So, I measured out the bag on the material (doubling the width AND the length and adding on seam allowances) and cut it all out......only to realise that there were TWO bags in those measurements!! So, I cut the piece in half and halved the seam allowances and now I have to make 2 bags from it! They will be slightly different, but only by the design being placed a little differently on the front and back.....and maybe different stitching for the applique. Hopefully, I will get at least ONE finished by Thursday - that is when I have planned on going over to my friend's place to give her the pressies that I made her......I have decided that one will be for her daughter. The curtain material has both a girl and a boy on it, so I might make up a little bag for the boys each, too! Then I might not find cars all over the place!
When you have HUGE deigns and inspiration to do something and actually follow through with it and complete it, but it just doesnt happen, because you get sidetracked by something else?

My crafting for the week was sposed to be dictated by the list to the left, but I havent completed ONE single thing!! I ran out of material or time or.........you know the drill! Not happy, Jan (I wonder who, exactly, Jan is. People just dont seem to be happy with her AT ALL)!

My friend FINALLY had her baby girl on Monday, so I have been busy making things for her and her big sister.

There are some burp cloths (based on the tutorial found here, but made with towelling nappies with some extra padding in between the decorative fabric and the towelling).

And a crayon holder for big sis. I WAS going to give her the one I made the other week, but was not completely happy with it, so it will now go to Weez for Chrissy. Yes, this one IS much like the last one....same fabric and tutorial, just different uses.....but I like the combo so much, that I just HAD to try it another way!

D's placemats are coming along well. I have made the two layers....just have to get some thin batting for between the layers and some bias binding for around the outside and they will be ready - well in time for Chrissy!

I went through my stash this morning!! I cleaned it up and sorted it all out, folding the fabric and working out just how much I had of each and exactly WHAT (and just what I didnt think that I would USE!). I found quite a few from Big W that still have the cardboard around them, so they are now in the wash (I have probably had them for YEARS!). Also, I can now see what I want, when I want it - the joys of see-through boxes! No more rummaging through the boxes until I find out what I can use and what I cant!

This is my tea towel that I made for Karma! She received it last week and says that she loves it! I am soooo glad! I had nerves about it, the whole time it was in transit...you know....as you get with all swaps!

I forgot to take an up close photo of the redwork that I did! So, I tried to cut out and enlarge the photo that I took and it didnt turn out too good, so I scrapped that idea - sorry!

Glad you like it, Lisa!

The way I made this -

1 piece of 100% cotton fabric (mine was actually an old curtain)
2 pieces of contrasting fabric (for the trim)
Thread to match the trim (or any other colour you like - I used red)
Embroidery thread for the redwork (of course, redwork does not actually have to be red - you can make it any colour you like!)
Embroidery pattern (I used 2....one for the girl and one for the flowers and bee and mixed them together)

NOTE: The embroidery is completely up to you! You can embellish the towel in any way you like - applique, embroidery, whatever tickles your fancy!

To Make
Decide what size you want your towel to be. I wanted something big, but not too big to be encumbersome (is that a word?), so I took an already used towel and measured that. Measure out your fabric and cut it to size. Remember the seam allowances! You need one on each side and one on each end!

Take your trim fabric and decide what you would like to do to it - you could just add it to the bottem of the towel, like I did, or completely encase the bottem, making the towel 3 times as thick on the end (if you get what I mean!). This is what I originally wanted to do, but forgot all about doing, so mine just got added on! You could also make it as small OR big as you would like!

After you decide this, measure and cut the trim to these measurements - make sure that it is the same width as the towel fabric and twice as long as the trim.

Fold over the seam allowances on the long side of the trim fabric, pin and iron. Then fold this whole thing in half (wrong sides facing) and iron.

Place the trim on the end/s where you decided that you would like to put it and sew a line just inside the trim edge. This can be a decorative stitch or you may decide to just straight stitch. If you straight stitch, I recommend you put two lines....just for extra stability!

Trim off the threads and hem the sides of the towel (I just folded mine and stitched with a straight stitch, but do yours whatever way you like!) and there you have it!! A blank canvas to work from! Now you can embroider, applique, paint or whatever and you have a unique, handmade gift for anyone!

AH! My first EVER sewing tutorial!! I hope that it is easy to understand! If not, feel free to leave a question in the comment area and I will try to answer it the best and most honest way I can!
I have finally finished a sewing project and can post up pictures!! The first 3 photos are of a crayon roll that I have made for a friend's daughter (the pattern is taken from here). My friend is due to have a baby very, very soon....like, she was due Monday just gone!! I havent heard anything, yet, so I am guessing she is still crossing her legs, the silly woman!! LOL. The material is from my stash. I do not know where I got the material from, originally, but the pink floral, *I think*, is from Big W and one of their remnants that I purchased AGES ago! The hearts on the outside are yo-yo hearts and I blanket stitched around the outside by hand (yep - took me ages....longer than actually making it...because of the thick layers of material!!).

These ones are a frog. I have made 2 of these, but have only stuffed one....just to see how he would go. This one is completely stuffed with poly stuffing. I might make the next one/s with the wheat that is just begging to be used.....just to make him a little more floppy. This pattern was taken from here. I used some old material of my Mum's. The top was actually a dress (I dont know whether she cut it out, ready to sew and she just didnt get to it or if she actually cut up a dress, planning on using the fabric for something else) and the bottem is from a skirt (yep...a lime/fluorescent green skirt....with a white satin lining underneath...geez my Mum had great taste!! LOL).

About the patterns:
The crayon roll is really, REALLY simple! It took me only a couple of hours to make it up......if my sewing skills were a little better, then it probably would have only taken me 1/2 as long, I reckon! The tutorial that I took it from (here) has really simple and easy to follow steps and photos......which is really good, considering my sewing abilities are not all that great, just yet!

Mr Frog turned out WAY different to the photos (go here), but I am still very happy with the way he turned out!! He only took me a couple of hours to make......again, if my sewing skills were a little better, then he would have taken me 1/2 the time.
Since I have decided to actually POST more and more on here, I have decided to make this blog MINE. I upgraded my template to make adding things easier (like the "Work in Progress" bars). Now, instead of going to my template and changing things around (and, maybe, stuffing things up!), all I have to do is edit STRAIGHT from my "Template" tag up top!

I had a little play around, this morning, also and made up a new banner! What do ya reckon? They are a selection of photos that are currently my faves.

Yeh, I know.....all this time and I could have been doing the housework or something, but........like I keep on saying -"Procrastination is my middle name!"
At the beginning of every month, there is a new SWAP beginning! Last months (October) was a Tea Towel SWAP. This tea towel could be bought and embellished or made from scratch. My SWAP partner was Karma! She made me this beautiful tea towel!

Isnt it gorgeous? "Fresh is the bloom of a bright spring day" is what she wrote on it. it is HUGE, with a chocheted top! Just perfect for hanging!

As she hasnt yet received mine, here is a sneak peak of what I made:

LMAO!! Not much of a peek, but there it is...without giving away too much of it! I made it completely from scratch. I had and old 100% cotton curtain with tab tops and cut out the tea towel from that. I put a trim on the bottem and embroidered a small design on the bottem, left hand corner. Honestly, it doesnt look like much, compared to hers! I hope she likes it!!

I had soooo much fun making hers, that I have plans on making a few more as Chrissy pressies (from the same curtain). I have also cut out a couple of other things from the same curtain, so keep your eyes peeled here for the results!!
I recently had the unpleasant experience of saying goodbye to my dearly beloved Nanna. She was 86 years of age and died peacefully in our local hospital on 23rd October.

Her and I were pretty close. I could talk to her about anything and she would tell me all about her life, loves and passions. More so in the last couple of months, because she was a little house bound and basically confined to her bed most days.

She loved all things yarn crafty - crocheting, knitting and weaving. She was a damn fine sewer, too. I often admired a picture of her that stood on the sideboard in the dining room. It showed her in a dress that she had made herself.

Her love for her family shined through when she talked. She also loved hearing all about everyone and how they were growing up, developing and living.

Nanna's passion for food was a little on the expensive side - she loved the seasonal fruit....Mangoes, Pineapple and Passionfruit....she also LOVED her seafood! Mud Crabs and Prawns (any sort....she didnt discriminate), fish (and chips - every Thursday night)...you name it, she loved it.....especially if it was free! We have prawns and oysters quite often, Pete and I (basically our one and only treat once a fortnight), so I would save her some just about every time and take them into her next time I was to see her.

At Nannas funeral, many, many people showed up. She had a lot to do with the community when she was able and touched many peoples lives. Here are some extracts from her eulogy (written and read by my Uncle Ian and my Dad):

Joseph and Sarah Duggan had a large family of which Mum was the second eldest. Mavis was born on the 28th June 1921 at Parson’s Point Gladstone.

Due to Pop’s work commitments the ever-growing family moved between Brisbane and Gladstone. Since 1940 lived in Gladstone at her present address.

Wherever she went Mum increased her repertoire for learning the necessary skills for later life. (This was done by) working in with sisters and brothers, Jean, Joseph, frank, Betty, Bill, George, Alice, Hilda, and Josephine.

Whilst at Parson’s Point Mum recalls visiting her grandmother, Grandma Buck, who flew a parcel delivery aeroplane to and from Brisbane, Auntie Phoebe and Uncle Sam Millward, playing at school with the local kids and the annual Christmas break-up with the homemade ginger-beer and horehound.

After the many moves, it was around 1940 that Mum returned to Gladstone on a permanent basis.

Pop bought a property at 155 Off St. from Mr Corr next door, and later sold the house which was built with team effort to Mum and Dad.

During the War many Yanks camped on the Barney Point Golf Course. Mrs. Eggstein used to hold parties and invite everyone but mum had eyes for my future Dad, Harry Watts. He was living close by and was working for Bill Golding.

Due to rules at the time regarding marriages, Mum and Dad were married on the 23rd June 1943 at the Presbyterian Church at Norman Park.

Another page finishes and a new one begins.

Harold was born in 1944,

Joe in 1947,

David in 1950 (my Dad),

Yvonne in 1952,

myself (Uncle Ian) in 1953,

and Stephen in 1960.

As each grew Mum became involved in the local South Gladstone State School Committee and to the St.Saviours Church of England Boys Club. (She was) always providing a guiding hand and love.

At the beginning of 1965 a tragic turn of events altered Mum’s life forever.

A car accident on top of the Gin Gin range saw her eldest son killed, me in a coma for 6 weeks, Stephen thrown clear with minor injuries and her being constantly hospitalised.

The beauty of all this was that the whole Watts and Duggan families pulled together and each assisted us through this crisis.

Yet another page of the book of life is turned.

Mum was there for all our ups and downs.

Stephen recalls how mum and he used to ride the steam train to Rockhampton when they used to visit the eye doctor. She really enjoyed all the trips with us wherever we went.

In the 70’s Mum saw her flock marry and begin to move on to raising their families.

The first to start the next generation was only daughter, Yvonne and Keith Gilmore with Lois. Mum really enjoyed the added company. This family went on to produce 2 more grandchildren for her and 3 great grandchildren.

David and Linda gave Mum 2 Grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren.

Janine and I between us gave Mum 5 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren.

Between Joe and Julie they gave her 5 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild, whilst Stephen and Kathy gave her 3 grandchildren.

Believe me; Mum adored each and every one of them.

Through her love and tireless efforts, I think our family now knows the meaning of “Life hereafter.”

We were brought up to love and respect all mankind no matter what their station is in life.

We understand religious beliefs and without piety for those whose beliefs are different and affect each of us.

- No more suffering and no more pain –

May you enjoy your restful sleep.

I know you and Dad are together again and you are watching over us, always.

Thank you Mum --- Goodbye for now.

Hmm....seems the running theme for me having a blog is to neglect it! Since I have never been one for keeping a diary (although I have had heaps, I never keep them up), this doesnt surprise me one little bit!

Lots has happened in the last couple of months, though. As you would expect, the kids have grown up sooooooo much and I just cant keep up! I have been bitten by the crafty bug and have many, many plans to make HEAPS of stuff for Chrissy pressies, this year! This will be my first handmade Christmas, so it will probably be a little interesting, to say the least!

I have also found out that I am pregnant.....again!! So excited! And, of course, we are hoping for a little girl, this time, to even out the numbers. I am due March 31st.....one day over and I could have myself an April Fool! Seems the time to have a baby, though - a couple of my friends are pregnant, too! It is a weird feeling, being preggers with friends.....I am not used to it! But, I find that I am able to keep a track of them as well as myself (one friend is due in a couple of days and I will be 1/2 way in a couple of days - weird, hey?).

Pete has started a job out at the Smelter (Alumina plant) and is doing shift work (4 days on, 4 days off). He is still running his own business, just in his days off. Yes, it is a little more stressful, but at least we dont have to rely on clients money coming in to pay the bills!

That is about it, for the moment - well, enough that I can catch this up, anyway. I will be on a little later to catch up a little more and share some photos!
I have been a bit quiet on here lately!! My life has been full, though and there is just so much to share!

Since my last post, I have:
* Celebrated my 30th birthday
* Celebrated my son's 1st birthday (yep - it has been over a year since I had him!!)
* Done many, many craft projects (mainly knitting, but there has been a sewing project and a crochet one, too)
* Lived life in general
* Been sick a couple of times (including the kids)!!

I have also run a not-for-profit roadside assistance program for my husband, who cant seem to read his fuel gauge properly or have things in his ute to change a flat tyre!! Yep - about 4 times in the last 2 months I have run to his aid - no matter what I was doing at the time!! And yesterday, with the flat tyre, was the straw that broke the camels back!!!! Here is photo evidence:

Well, it seems that it takes 3 men to change a tyre!! Not to mention the ONE WOMEN it took to bring in the items, so that the tyre COULD be changed!!

Moving on, here are some photos of my knitting conquests:

A scarf for myself

A scarf for the girls. Made out of feathers wool (multicoloured and a white, downy one). I also made another with the same multicoloured feathers wool and a pink downy one.

OO!! That one didnt turn out too well...sorry!! These 3 are pressies for friends - left to right, we have one for my SIL, one for my 30th party (for those who did not fit in to the relevant catagory) and one for my Bro, who has just gone into hospital to have an operation on his leg.
Mother's Day

No brekky in bed for me this year! Not even a coffee....the whole house was off doing their own thing (but still at home, mind you). I was left to flounder out of bed by my little self and face the day, making my own coffee and heading downstairs in my jammies.

It took everyone at least 1/2 hour to get round to wishing me a Happy Mother's Day, so at least they gave me room to wake up!!

They then got in and made me some very lovely cards! Moo had already made me something at school, but wanted to make me something from home. Do you remember making tissue flowers at school or when you were a kid? Remember giving them to your Mum and thinking that they were just THE best flowers that you have given her? Well, that is what Moo gave me this year!! I love them!! Here's a photo:What crafty little individuals they are!! I LOVE it when they do this sort of thing!!
I have a skirt. This skirt is old, but hardly worn because of its plain unflatteryness (oo..nice word, must remember that one!!).

Anyway, here it is (modelled by moi, of course!!
Told ya! TOTALLY unflattering. There is a zip on the left hand side and a tie made from the binding at the top.

So, this is now going to be something else! I am going to attempt my first garment reconstruction!!!! You can join in my journey, because I am going to make up a tutorial when I do it and post it on CM and in here!
Happy Easter!

The morning has come and gone. The kids have got their presents. There is no chocolate, here, unless it is given to the kids from someone else. Even then, we 'ration' it out to them, so that they are not out of their trees for the holidays. For some strange reason, the Easter holidays start AT Easter in QLD and not the weekend before, like so many lucky states! Well, lucky for the parents, not the teachers! hehe.

We went on a nice little bike ride this morning - to clear the head....apparently. Well, as nice as a kiddy chair and a kiddy trailer on the back of a bike can make it, anyway!! My plans are to take the kids to and from school on the bikes, so I had better get some fitness up about me or I am just going to be totally stuffed!! The hills are the killer! Not going down them - the trailer pushes me on them - but going up them! I was afraid to change gears, at first, because my bike has had troubles before in that department! Our plan was for a large ride before lunch, have lunch at a brilliant little take away and then come on home, stopping off at a friend's place on the way. Didnt happen! We got 1/2 way to the shop and I decided to turn off and make my way to my friends place! My legs were KILLING me! But my friend was duly impressed...hehe.

Pete has just bought me a cross trainer (elliptical exercise machine, where you stand and pedal instead of sitting on a bike. Oh! and you use your arms, too, so good all round.), so I will no doubt be hopping on that every day. All it takes is 5 minutes to get a decent work out on one area, so I will definitely be doing that! Just pop on when the kids are asleep or something like that and off I go!!

I have set myself a challenge for this long weekend - to clean up my soap making area. This involves the other areas under the house, here and takes up about 1/2 of the under-house area (if you catch my drift. So is a pretty big job! When we moved here, everything just got thrown in left, right and centre - where it could fit best - and I have been putting off sorting it all out until now! I have set this challenge on CM mainly for myself, but I have asked the girls to join in with me, also. So far, a couple have taken up the challenge with me and sorted out their areas that they have been putting off, themselves, so all is good - I am not alone in my endeavour!
Seems I have been neglecting my blog a little! Sorry, girl!

I have been in the middle of moving houses - and towns - for the last couple of weeks, but that is NO EXCUSE for not blogging, I know!

Craft-wise, a few things have been happening, here! I took part in the Crafty Mama's keychain swap in February and their recipe card swap, too. I received Cin's keychain in the mail the other day and it is just gorgeous! Must get a photo of it and post it here! The button on it brings back memories of my childhood! I think I had a dress or something with the same buttons on it! THINK!

I am thinking of doing up the kids' rooms - not just with doonas and curtains in a theme, but with a few embellishments here and there. The thoughts are there - just have to put them into something! I must get my sewing machine back off my good friend, Di, one of these days!

This weekend is Easter! We dont have much planned for the weekend. Amy is with her family and the next couple of days sound like they are flat out for her. I plan on getting into my soap making area and organising that! I have made a challenge up for myself on Crafty Mamas, so it had BETTER get done, or those girls can seriously kick my butt!! Might get the kids in there, earning a few bucks for themselves! That will make the load easier!

Oh! Another reason to get my machine back off Di? Nik did the GORGEOUS recon of a normal T into a tank/cami top and I would just LOVE to try it out! It also gives me some incentive to try something on a skirt that has been sitting in my cupboard for a little while! I was just looking at it this morning, thinking that SOMETHING needed to be done with it, because ever since I got it off eBay, I dont think that I have worn it even ONCE (except to try it on, but that doesnt count!). Hmm....so many ideas, so little time!!!
Something has started!!

I have a friend (yes, believe it or not, I have a few - online AND offline), who has made herself up a blog to record her ramblings and to open herself up an let us get to know her a little more. This blog originally had the sole purpose to make a list of ALL the things that she wants to do before she turns 30. She has a little over a year, so I think that she will do well.

Thing is.......if she doesn't get these things done before then, she won't be too disappointed! She will just keep with the list and continue to enrich her life with experiences that we sometimes don't think about doing!

So, since I turn 30 this year, myself, I have decided to take a leaf out of her book and make a list for myself! Some will be done almost straight away - as soon as I get the guts up to do some!!

So, here is a start to my list -

Travel around Australia
Climb a mountain
Go abseiling
Go rock climbing
Go skiing
Quit smoking
Open a shop
Make liquid soap from scratch
Complete a crochet project

That is good enough for a start! Here is the link to Lex's blog - ....and the clock ticks

Well, the lovely Karma has tagged me! Here I was, thinking that I would just sit back and watch the goings on, but she found me! LMAO!! I have been a little slack here, lately and havent posted anything at all......in fact, I have been really slack and not done many things, lately! The school holidays are getting to me, as well as the kids!! Only 3 more days before they go back!!

Ok, so I have to name 6 weird things about myself and then tag another 6 people! So, here goes:

1. I LOVE vegemite and cheese.....toasted, or just on a sandwich. I thought that this was quite normal to like this, since I have done it since I was a kid, but APPARENTLY not!

2. Karma said that she doesnt drive in cities! Is that NOT normal?? Hmm.....another weird thing about me, then, too!

3. I can reverse park my big Land Rover County (9 seater)! I actually have only discovered that I can do this, when I was in a bind one day for a parking spot!!

4. I can reverse a trailer - APPARENTLY not many women my husband knows can do this!!

5. I have been told that being pregnant and enjoying it is weird, too......so add that one to the list.

6. Grasping at straws, here, but my musical tastes are a wide variety of genres - from classical, to contempory, to death metal!! It just depends on what sort of mood that I am in at the time.

Well, there ya go - 6 weird things about me! Now, to go and tag some people!!
First Big Project!!

Well, I have the crocheting bug and I just have to crochet something for the kids rooms!! I have just gone to my Newsagent and bought a couple of magazines - one being Creative Crochet. It has some fantastic designs in there that I just want to jump on into, but I think that I will just keep to simple granny squares for my first go at something big.

I went to spotlight this morning on the sole purpose of buying some wool for another project, but I came out with two of each of the balls you see pictured to the left. They were having a sale on them and they were just too irresistable!! The brown-y wool will be for J-Mans' bed and the Black/Grey will be for Lenny's. Yep - that is a black/grey blend, there, not just black/white with a grey solid - not blue (sorry, camera was running out of battery power).

The dark blue PURE wool was also on special - just $2 a ball, so I snavelled up about 4 of them for my project!!
Follow me on this little adventure - I will post photos and come back regularly and tell you my progress!!

Well, I have decided to keep all my project together and just keep editing posts with the updates.
So, here is a sneak peek of what it is up to today!!

Not much, at the moment, but it is a start!!
Starting off this blog has been hard!! I have written and re-written this first post so many times, that I am just fed up with typing and thinking!! I will just type what I am thinking, now!!

We are a large family, consisting of 7 kids, 2 adults, 2 dogs and 4 fish. We live in Rockhampton, Central Queensland, Australia and own our own businesses. We moved up here from Gladstone about 18 months ago and are looking to move back down there in the future.

We have just made up our camping kit and are looking at taking a lot of camping trips in the future. We have just gone on our first camping trip all together with the gear, so I will post some pickies of them later.

On the crafty side - I am mainly the one who crafts, at the moment, with lots of different hobbies and projects on the go at once (just like anyone, I presume). I have the crochet bug, at the present moment, so there will be lots of crocheted items being made for my house!! I have my eyes on a nice lacey curtain, but I think that is just a little out of my league, at the moment!!

Well, that is good, for a start! I have just designed my own template to go with this blog and it needs a lot of work done to it.....it looks just a little plain, at the moment!! But it will be good for the moment, just until I can get my HTML/CSS knowledge up a little!!