Saturday, March 24, 2012

Sew, sew vs Sew Amazing

I mentioned in a previous post that I've taken up sewing. Aided by the awesome sewing machine my parents furnished me with over Christmas, I began teaching myself. I'm not very good and it is currently just a bit of fun. A bag here, and apron there, and even a bit of quilting. Presents for everyone! You can see the first few items over on my other blog, A Teetotal 2012. I am a bit hopeless at sewing things in a straight line, the quilting, in particular, is a dog's breakfast. But I am getting better and most importantly I am having fun. Don't worry, the balcony garden isn't ignored, it just gets to share its time with the sewing (and cooking, and working, and occasional blogging.)

But if you want to see some lovely baby quilts, done by a friend who started off by making one for her own daughter and enjoyed it so much she went into business, then head over to Tiny Tots Quilts. I love her stuff, it is simply beautiful and fun and full of skillyfully pieced amazing fabrics. If you are on facebook then head over via the link to check out her stuff. Here is a glimpse of some of the quilt patterns on offer:

You can view the quilts without being on facebook, but if you want to see more, or order one for a tiny tot in your life then you would have to get on facebook.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

What's me Flower?

A change took place slowly in the balcony garden, I embraced flowers. Sure there was always the hibiscus and the two abutilons, and all the veggie flowers, but they have never featured very heavily on my planting agenda. Then slowly but surely more little floral numbers began to populate the garden. There were the two new fuschias (though the white and purple one I've blogged about before). The frilly pink and purple one is delightful, while the purple and white one seems pinker in some lights.

The random rockery mix which produced these flowers (I can name all of them except the pink one, any help?)

The portulaca kept its centre position on the table. But it was joined for a while by a gazania.

This plant which the lovely fellow gardener L gave me finally decided to flower (it's been a while coming, but what the heck is it?)

Even two of the mints joined in! The bees love the berry and cream mint in particular.

I've always had a few floral additions to the garden before but it has never been this crowded or free-ranging. Any ideas on what my mystery plants are?

Oh and if you want to see some other florals - check out my poor sewing attempts on my other blog, A Teetoal 2012 (it's what I do when I'm not drinkin')

Monday, March 19, 2012

Harvests amongst the Term-time Tumbleweeds

You can tell when term time begins here because the tumble weeds come back into vogue on this blog. Teaching seven tutorials in two different subjects at two different universities, with additional head tutor responsibilities, coupled with research assistant work, thesis corrections, three ear aches this year already and a new penchant for sewing meant this blog has been a little neglected of late. That's not to say I didn't think of it, I simply had little energy and time to write anything of use.

And I even missed gaining my 100th follower (hi there 100th follower!!!) Not that there have been many posts to follow. But to make up for it here are a few harvests of late, from the balcony garden:

Ok, so that's the only kind of harvest pic I have and it is not even from my own garden but from my cousin's country patch! Oooopssss. I've been eating lettuce by the bucketload, and using herbs, but do you think I could remember to photograph them on their own? Oooops. Though they do crop up in some later photos. However, here are some delicious market finds, tomatoes, delicious, gourmet, and good for the tummy.

Strawberries, $10 for 15 punnets, only two fuzzy ones in the lot!

Some food made from garden harvests and the above-mentioned market finds, from salads, to jam, to smoothies and apple and fig crumble cupcakes. If you look hard enough you can see some lettuce from the garden, and some basil on the pasta sauce. They're from my harvest! Yay.

Take some strawberries, goodness knows there are plenty left over in 15 punnets ... and some frozen yoghurt cubes, frozen mango and banana, milk, water, vanilla extract and you get smoothie heaven.

I even have some before and after shots, tomatoes before drying ...

Tomatoes after drying (and after most of them went in the pasta which was pictured earlier.) Note that I used the garlic and basil from the garden to add flavour to these while they dried.

And a curren(ish) picture of the Autumn balcony garden.

Hope that makes up for my prolonged absence. Time to start doing the question answering posts next, taking pictures of the harvest, and showing you my really inept sewing efforts.