Wednesday, December 30, 2009
This Regina Spektor video clip is breathtaking! I love the allusions to Escher and Dali and so many more. And her voice is just incredible.
(I've pre-posted this: Happy New Year's from Oman and I hope to be checking in soon!)
Friday, December 25, 2009
In a pretty last-minute trip, I am off today to Oman! In spectacular luck, I have been invited there for work, and I can't WAIT!
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
This chair was a late birthday present from my Mum and Dad, which now happily sits underneath another lovely present. I have so enjoyed rocking away with a book (or let's be honest, my thesis and pen in hand), looking out to the harbour. Which of course didn't come out in any of these photos. But it's there. And the cool breeze beckons now...
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Last week I was offered a pretty dream job, with the understanding that it would have an immediate start. I ended up turning it down, as I really need to finish my PhD, but I've wondered ever since whether I made a big mistake.
Monday, December 21, 2009
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Which I think is pretty exciting.
Taking Naomi's Green Christmas to heart once more, I made Christmas stockings for us both from remnants and scraps I had already, and the result is a pair of muted, felted stockings which I think are kind of fun.
Thursday, December 17, 2009
My penchant for little drawers full of trinkets, non-ugly filing cabinets and long white bench desks is made pretty clear. (And surely the KA on the wall is a direct cry out to me?)
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
I love it. And The Pal loves it, too.
There are lots of alternative Christmas trees around this year: have a look here for some more ideas.
Monday, December 14, 2009
*For my lovely international readers, Tonia is Australia's 1990s answer to Martha Stewart. Our Tonia is decoupage queen, and, as I discovered with a cheeky google, a very busy entrepreneur these days. I really use her name with love: if I was a little older, I would absolutely be her, sans decoupage.
Sunday, December 13, 2009
I'm pretty thrilled with how it all turned out. There are faint twinges of green in parts, but I'm hoping that adds to its history. I'm really happy with how new and shiny the base looks - my dear Mum painted it so beautifully (thanks Mum!)
All that's left to do is to polish it with some beeswax: it positively drunk up all the orange oil I rubbed in yesterday, so I think it's time for a new approach.
My Dad rang me last night to say he's spotted a wrought iron bench that needs some repair and thinks it should be "our" next project. We'll see!
For a reminder on how it looked before, have a look here. Yikes!
Thanks for your lovely, encouraging comments along the way - it's been so much fun to share this on the blog!
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Last night our external hard drive died.
Months ago, the Pal had very proudly hooked up a whole terabyte of movies and TV shows to a screen in our lounge room, and we relished in our (ahem, mainly his) cleverness. It’s like a TV! We cried. Only better and with nothing we don’t want to watch! It was a golden age of 30 Rock, The Wire, The West Wing (it will never be old to us) and so many more shows and films. I'm talking a TERABYTE of them.
But as I said, last night it died. For the last few months, it had been uttering strangled, gurgling sounds, which, as it turns out, is what the death rattles of a hard drive sound like. The Pal and I chose to ignore these sounds. Fearing a meltdown or a pricey replacement, we chose to tell ourselves that it had “always sounded like that” and that “it still works” so there was nothing to worry about. But there was something to worry about, as suddenly the drive said “corrupt” and that’s just how the Pal and I felt. In a moral sense, you understand.
Late last night, I came to terms with this loss. It is a first world problem, I thought. I can buy the DVDs again and rip them again. Worse things (but obviously not by much) have happened in the world.
Flash forward to this morning, when an over-eager electrician who was fixing our washing machine turned off the mains power. I wasn’t quick enough to turn off my computer in time, and sat, a little twitchy, waiting to turn my mac back on to see what I had lost.
In what can only be described in religious resurrection terms, I found all of my shit. All of it. The hard drive came whirring back and minutes later, in a Holy Grail kind of moment, I sat scrolling through all my long lost (ok, short lost) favourites. As I write, I am transferring all my precious files to another safe place, with a renewed sense of optimism and amazement at technology and its foibles.
We’ll probably need another hard drive, and we’ll probably lose some data, but isn’t it nice when you have little moments which burst through cloudy days with beams of sunny, sunny light?
Monday, December 7, 2009
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Still so much green!!! Happily, I'm finding more and more details by being this up close and personal: above you can see some initials stamped in the wood while the paint bubbles off. (The orange stuff is the gel-like paint stripper).And here's the same piece, after scraping and washing off the paint. (The hinges are a bit green still, but you won't be able to see them at all when it's all finished and put back together.)
Here's another little hidden detail I found on the bottom of the wrought iron base: Simanco, which I suppose stands for Singer Manufacturing Company.
Mum and I had a great time chatting away while she painted and I sanded and stripped paint. I'm actually allergic to paint (and fumes) so I couldn't do the paint job myself, but Mum had a wonderful time. I think she's wondering what else she can paint, now...which could be a worry!
Next week? The final installment!
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Monday, November 30, 2009
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Now, a question for all of you playing at home: would you varnish this or polish it with an oil instead? I don't really want it too dark, and am leaning towards an oil at this stage. Any suggestions?
Thursday, November 26, 2009
I had some hesitations about making a gift: what if she hated it? And what if all my other friends who read this think, 'I hope she doesn't make one for me one day!' So tell me, dear readers, what are your thoughts on handmade gifts? (For the record, I love them...)
This new little label is made from one of my handmade stamps, and might be a recurring feature on my quilts. Now, to get to the huge quilt backlog!
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
I need to stop what I'm doing RIGHT NOW, go to France, conceive a child, wait about three years, cut her hair into a cute bob and then record her telling stories like this one.
In a non-creepy way, you understand.
Edited to say: I think one of the cutest bits is the face she makes at 1:51. Ok, and the rest of it.
Monday, November 23, 2009
So I am now the proud owner of so many lovely goodies. Thanks Danielle - so very kind of you!
I'd encourage everyone to participate in swaps: it's such a lovely way to get to make new friends and to think up creative gifts. Wheee!
Sunday, November 22, 2009
In the photo above you can see how much rust is on the treadle. I have been scrubbing it off with a wire brush, but it is stubborn. Think at this stage I'll definitely have to paint it glossy black to get it back to its former glory.
Basically this is all I have left to do: the back and the insides, and a bit of detailing all over. At this stage, my thoughts are this: paint stripping needs a lot of effort and time. For me, it's been worth it, as I'll have a piece of heirloom furniture that I love. But I can see how this could never be a viable business model - it just takes too much time.
And this is what it looked like before remember?! Why green, Dad, why green?!
*Again, please excuse the photo quality. These were taken in a garage, and the light is really bad.