Thursday, 28 February 2013

Beach give away

We may be heading towards the Spring in the UK but outside it really is properly dreary, the complete opposite to those dreamy two weeks I spent drenched in sunlight whilst I was in Australia. I've been spoilt by my trip overseas, I no longer wish to settle for grey drizzle now that I have had a glimpse of those golden rays.

But as the chances of me going anywhere other than work, to make up the hours I missed, are very slim, I thought I might try to spread a little happiness with a "Beach" style give away.


So I am giving away this hand and machine stitched mini quilt. It had a red, white and blue striped background with blue coloured cotton lettering, edged with white hand sewn running stitch. It is made totally from reused and recycled fabrics.

Pre-loved Story

The striped fabric is from one of my favourite charity shops, Age Concern. There is a small box of scrap fabric which I always look through. This fabric was brought about 3 years ago and has sat in the drawer of my 1910 Singer sewing machine cabinet, waiting for the perfect project. The blue lettering is from a pair of my son's trousers that have spent my hours at the beach, making sandcastles and paddling in the sea.

Re-love Story

I would love this mini quilt to find a home in a beach hut, living side by side with a striped wind break and old canvas deck chair. It is quite an appropriate colourway for the anyone with the Aussie / UK double life like mine and would look fabulous on a tea tray with the best china, cucumber sandwiches and scones or next to a barbie meatfest with a few cold beers.

100% Cotton and machine washable. The quilt measures 25 x 20.5 cm

And all you need to do to win is leave me a comment about the beach and I will do some random picker thing to choose a winner in a couple of weeks. Good luck guys ;)

Sunday, 24 February 2013

52 weeks of happy - week 7

Doesn't time just fly, I had to check on my calendar that I really should be on week 7 and that I hadn't got carried away and ahead of myself. There are days when I do wish that there was a pause button so I could hold things there for a moment, really get a chance to be in that moment before it slips through my fingers.

No. 1 I sat on the beach, knitting a blanket for my baby nephew and watched the sun set. It was one of those times that I knew would never happen again and it was one I wanted to hold on to as long as possible or at least until the sun went down.

No. 2 the seagulls in Australia are much smaller than their English cousins. My children thought it might be that they aren't as greedy and lazy as our chip stealing Kentish gulls

No. 3 all good things come to an end and although the prospect of leaving my Aussie family didn't really make me happy, returning to my own children and husband did

No. 4 it was over 30 years between my first trip to Australia and this one so I hope the next one won't be quite so long

52 weeks of happy - week 6

I'm still catching up with all the happiness. It really is quite bizarre being tucked up in my cosy bed with snow flurries dancing outside the window whilst I put together a collage of photos from just a few days ago when I was in Australia, basking in the glorious sun, swimming in the surf and enjoying the soaring temperatures.

No. 1 swimming in the sea after school in our dresses with my adorable niece

No. 2 an early morning run along the coast line at sunrise

No. 3 trekking through the rain forest and battling against the outback on a beautifully maintained footpath approximately 150m from the visitors centre at Fitzroy Falls

No. 4 cuddles and kisses with my brand new nephew, I love him so much x


Friday, 22 February 2013


Although I've only just returned from Australia, I'm not quite settling back into the old routine again yet. This time I've got an invite from Lou over at Make Do Sew to do a guest post, which is totally exciting because it means that someone trusts me to create a post worthy of appearing on their blog. I hope I don't let Lou or her readers down as I have chosen to showcase my bad knitting skills.

You can check out the post here and take a look at Lou's blog which I think is rather lovely.

Thursday, 21 February 2013

52 weeks of happy - week 5

I am behind with my posting about my weeks of happy but definitely not lacking in happy events and lovely, lovely photos to include. I am almost exploding with happiness after my brief trip to Australia for the birth of my new nephew and then returning home to my wonderful husband and my own crazy kidlets.

Goodbye England - I left England at lunch time on 30th January 2013 with a mixture of tears, excitement and expectations

Sydney - I flew into Sydney as the sun rose on 1st February

Bronte - I went straight from the airport to Bronte to the beach, dropped in on my brother and had a play with my Aussie nieces and nephew

Kiama - I finally arrived at my destination late in the afternoon



Wednesday, 13 February 2013

To the one I love


Although I am spending Valentine's day with the new man in my life, my heart still belongs to my husband. I am sad to be thousands of miles away from the one I love but have spent the day collecting hearts in order to send a huge and enormous amount of love to him.



Happy Valentine's Day

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Blogging on the beach


A while ago I read a blog post by the inspirational Pip Lincoln about the limitations of blogging on the beach. Despite her reservations about the inpracticalities, it was totally and most definitely something I wanted to try. To be honest, if the blogging part didn't work out, then I could just simply have a rather special time hanging out on the beach. (Having seen a positively ancient surfer chick catching some waves the other day, I am not so concerned about looking frightful in a bikini. I rather like the anything goes style of Kiama.)
At the time I never thought that I would get the chance to blog Aussie style stretched out on a towel, basking in the sun like a lizard. More like huddled over a coffee, while the wind whipped up a storm outside and the rain lashed down against a desolate cafe in Margate.

But here I am on the other side of the world, a million miles away from my real life and right up close to the thing I miss the most when I am at home, my sister. I guess that's why I am so happy to be here despite being separated from my husband and children.

I just went in the sea to think about that point and that really is it. No matter where you are in the world, as long as you are near the people you love, then everything is wonderful and if they can't be close to you, they will always be in your thoughts.


Wednesday, 6 February 2013

The school run - Ozzie style

An important part of my overseas Mary Poppins role is the school run. I often see this as a bit of a bind at home, especially when it's freezing or pouring with rain, I much prefer this blazing sun, azure blue skies and sea views.

So I walked out of the front door to a spectacular view


Turned left at the station


Up the hill


And a little bit further up the steep hill

The sunshine and the warm weather does make all the difference

And it was the perfect weather for a dip in the surf on the way home.


Sunday, 3 February 2013

Ocean view


Sometimes your world becomes so small: home, work, school, gym, supermarket. I usually spend a large amount of my time within a two mile square area, but there is a whole world out there. I have seen so many exciting and new things over the past few days. There are stunning ocean views from lots of my sister's windows in her amazing home in the town of Kiama. I knew that I would love Australia as my previous visit is still clearly etched in my mind. I could look out across the sea for hours and listen to the waves crashing.


It's not baking hot but it's pleasantly warm. I love that everywhere looks so different to the grey and dreary English winter. Even when it's cloudy and drizzly in Kiama, it's still beautiful to me. I can see just why the Ozzie surf dude lifestyle is so attractive.

And best of all I have my adorable niece to look after and even though I miss my own family terribly, this is a once in a life time opportunity. I am going to be here to see her transform from an only child into the most wonderful big sister.


Saturday, 2 February 2013

The Australian Job

So here I am on the other side of the world and getting ready to go it alone with my new charge Lily tomorrow morning.

It is of course a great honour to look after my first ever niece Lily and I am delighted to say not for the first time either. So whilst her mummy and daddy head off to get that new baby out, I get to see Australia through the eyes of a six year old. Seeing as I was 10 years the last time I visited Oz, I think I can really rock this mission. With the combination of my Mary Poppins attitude, a sprinkling of adventure and the intensive Perkin household training I received over the last 24 hours, I can't wait to get started,


It could be just a little bit warmer though.