my life in the land down under

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Moving On

The following words are from a song that I found encouraging and meaningful a few years ago, when I was a new wife & step-mum. I heard it again recently and it still applies, though in different ways. It seemed appropriate to the start of a new year.

It’s time to open up the memories of your past
And its time to move on
It’s time to open up the shadows of your heart
And it’s time to move on

Cause it’s a great time to live and it’s time to
Stand up and be counted
It’s a great time to live and it’s time to
Stand up and be counted on

It’s time to open up and shed a little light
On your soul
Cause the box you put your heartache in got
Lost or swept out to sea
Now it’s time just to move on

Cause it’s a great time to live and it’s time to
Stand up and be counted
It’s a great time to live and it’s time to
Stand up and be counted on

It’s a long long road to carry on
I’ve got to stand up and be counted on
It’s a long long road and I’ve got to be strong.

It’s a long long road to carry on
I’ve got to stand up and be counted on
It’s a long long road and I’ve got to be strong.

It’s a great time to live and it’s time to
Stand up and be counted
It’s a great time to live and it’s time to
Stand up and be counted on

It’s a long long road to carry on
I’ve got to stand up and be counted on
It’s a long long road and I’ve got to be strong

It’s a long long road and I’ve got to be strong.

(Lyrics from ‘Stand Up’ by The Feelers – click on the link to see a video)

Several years ago we saw this group perform live, along with others – it was a good night.

The Feelers in concert #1

The Feelers in concert – lead singer

The Feelers in concert #2

Silhouetted musician

… But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
Phillipians 3.13-14



Sunday Inspiration, 9th December 2012

Today’s first encouraging thought comes from Melissa Little’s blog The Inner Beauty of a Restless Heart. Melissa’s post ‘Don’t Worry. Be Happy’ struck a chord with me so I asked permission to quote her.

“If you have the mental power to imagine greater things for yourself, you also have the power to make it reality”.

So instead of looking at your life and feeling discouraged because you’re not where you want to be (and like me, you may think you’ll never get there), take responsibility for your life, make some changes and move towards your goals. If you can imagine it, you can make it happen. With God’s help, as John rightly reminded me.

Of course I’m preaching to myself here! 😉

For me the list of things that need to be done (or that I want to do) often becomes overwhelmingly long. This causes a lot of stressful emotions and makes it difficult to even get started. Then I’m really hard on myself for procrastinating, not getting things done, and not reaching the standards I set for myself…

So I was also encouraged recently by another blog post ‘All or nothing, or somewhere in between’ on setting small goals, rather than larger ones which are unattainable in the time frame available. Thanks to Helen of ‘Being, Nothingness and 1000 quilt blocks’ for these words of wisdom from your own experience.

I guess it’s all about priorities, time management, little steps, staying focused and being kind to myself.

What should my priorities and goals be, though? How do I know I’m following the right path for my life?

Today I was reminded of these verses from Proverbs 3. 5-6: ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. Acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will direct your paths.’

Now to put it all into practice. 🙂

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Sunday Inspiration, August 12th 2012

Here’s a few thoughts I’ve come across recently that I’ve found encouraging and inspiring. Hope you do too!

A quote used by Sandy Puc’ on her CreativeLive photography seminar last week:

“This life is yours. Take the power to choose what you want to do and do it well. Take the power to love what you want in life and love it honestly. Take the power to walk the forest and be part of nature. Take the power to control your own life. No one else can do it for you. Take the power to make your life happy.” – Susan Polis Schultz

Thought for the Week from the hospital chaplain:
“When you harbour Bitterness
Happiness will dock elsewhere.”

How to reduce stress in your life and make time for what’s really important by adding margin…

Being happy and kind wins over having the housework done perfectly…

And in relation to something I posted a few weeks ago here: Whither Thou Goest … what’s around the corner?

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Quilting Lesson #5 / Words III

No you haven’t missed the blog posts on lessons #3 and #4 – I didn’t write any. Where has the time gone?!

Since my last update on the quilt project (Made with Love by Wildcraft Farm), a lot has happened but there doesn’t seem to be much to show for it. With my new-found knowledge after the first couple of classes, I put the second block together at home. I was feeling very pleased and proud of myself – until we discovered it was 3/4″ shorter than the first one. I had been very careful to measure, cut and sew correctly so was puzzled and disappointed. After going over the pattern several times, and some discussion with the tutor and other members of the class at lesson #3, I still couldn’t figure out where I’d gone wrong (well maybe 1/4″ but not 3/4″). I decided to unpick some of the shorter block and add in a strip. Its a scrappy quilt anyway and I’m just making it more unique to me! The side borders will also need to be redone as I’ll need longer pieces to match the other blocks. So I put the block aside for the moment, and worked on the appliqué for blocks 3 and 4.

The next two weeks seemed to go very quickly and we were busy with work and other commitments, so I got very little done at home – just a stitched word while working nights (it was a bit crooked). At lesson #4 I put the central part of the third block together; again there were several small strips that needed to be combined. I came home from an evening shift the night before the lesson and decided to choose the colours – this is fun but takes time to get it ‘just right’. John got up and came out to see what I was doing at 12.30am and I had the materials spread out all over the couch!

The day after lesson #4 we traveled to Napier (see Hair). We were staying with John’s sister Joan who has made many quilts, wall hangings, table runners, cushions, you name it – and has a huge pile of quilting magazines just asking to be browsed. I was looking forward to sharing my project with her, but also a bit concerned as to what she would think of it. On the whole she was very encouraging – she did suggest that I redo my stitchery though, and use back stitch instead of stem stitch, as it would look finer and neater, and would be easier to stitch the curved letters. She showed me some beautiful examples of stitchery she’d done. I have a long way to go…!

Yesterday we bought some graph paper and I drew out block #3 to scale with only the final sewn measurements marked on it. We have patterns for each block that are very close to scale, but after pencilling both the cut and final sewn measurements onto the pattern I was becoming confused. After my short block the tutor recommended we draw the pattern out on ‘imperial’ graph paper. The pattern unfortunately is written in inches and the paper is in mm as we couldn’t get any imperial, but I’m doing my best.

I also restitched the third word. The original block #3 used the word ‘Care’, I have changed this to ‘Encourage’ – this and the previous word are now very appropriate, as I will need both commitment and encouragement to redo some of the blocks correctly and beat the measurement problem!

Today was lesson #5. As I said, where has the time gone?! Our usual tutor Brenda was away, so we had Carol overseeing us instead. She commented that we were an unusually quiet group – I said it must be beginners’ concentration – but we were a particularly small group today which meant we were even quieter than normal; one member didn’t attend and another left early, so there were only two of us there for the majority of the lesson.

I worked on block #3 today and with much careful measurement and resewing a couple of seams, was able to complete a 12″ x 12″ block. 🙂

Although I liked the word done in back stitch, the three others present all said they preferred my original stem-stitch attempts!

Quilt Block #3



Things have been especially busy here this week with work commitments and preparing for a big out-of-town photo project this coming weekend, so as much as I have wanted to blog and quilt, there hasn’t been much time.

Thanks to those who have followed my blog; your encouragement is appreciated. 🙂 It’s quite amazing to think there are people from other parts of the world, whom I’ve never met, who are interested in what I have to share. I’m enjoying checking out your writings & photographs too,  as time allows. There are some very talented, creative, interesting & funny bloggers here on WordPress – even down to the blog titles and bylines – how do you manage to think up such unique ones?! I’m inspired.