Saturday, September 30, 2023


 Well.... first up for today is rugby.  Stew will be watching the All Blacks vs. Italy in the World Cup Rugby.

After that we are not sure what our plans are.

Personally, I'm gunna stay in bed for as long as possible!  It's going to be another wet and miserable day.

I did wonder about getting some summer veges plants today, but I think it's too soon to be getting them yet.  That will happen in another 2-3 weeks.  I'm only going to be growing Tomatoes, Lettuces and Cucumbers this season.

I might do a filter run on the pool, add some chemicals and continue the process of getting it ready for summer.  I have syphoned off all the water on top on the pool cover, and topped up the pool itself too. Did all that yesterday.

Doing some maintenance over winter has kept the pool from going deep, dark green this year. Thank goodness!  

ABOVE: IF we don't think of something to do today, I can always start the stitching on these 3 Fish Runners.

They are going to take me quite a while to do.

ABOVE:  I am really happy with how my Rangitoto Islands look!  I have tried to make the shape of the island look as realistic as possible. 

I think I did a good job!

I got really excited and happy last night!

I put an online order in for this stuff:

ABOVE:  Jenny's Tamarind Chutney!  OMG it is amazing.  I got some last weekend, a 300 ml jar.  It's all gone.  So by ordering it online I can buy the larger, 500 ml jars.  It's hard to find here in Hamilton.  I let my fingers do the walking during the past week, and the few places that stock it didn't have any of the MILD that I prefer.

OH and by buying direct for the manufacturer, it's actually cheaper!  AND no shipping costs either.  

I literally flapped me hands in delight once my order was in.  I wonder how long it will take to arrive?

In the meantime, we do have a jar of the MEDIUM chutney, which I can use by toning it down with some sour cream.  Waste not and all that.

Stew is not a fan, so it's ALL MINE!

I highly recommend this chutney if you like Tamarind, and a chutney that packs a huge punch of flavour.   It is a New Zealand product, and they only ship within New Zealand.  Sorry about that overseas peeps.  

OK, it's time to get off here and see if I can catch a few more Zzzz's. 

The All Blacks rocketed home with a resounding win over Italy today!  Stew is a happy man.  96 - 17 could be called an amazing win!

Stew is now at the supermarket, and the girls and I are in the sewing room.

ABOVE:  It rained almost non stop all night, and it's still raining.  No point going anywhere, it's just miserable out there.

ABOVE:  I didn't really feel like sewing today, but here I am.

ABOVE:  At least the girls don't mind keeping me company.

Just had the most delicious Roast Chicken wrap!
Stew bought a cooked chook from the supermarket, so we had that for lunch.

Then... back to me sewing.

My favourite moment when doing fish?
Adding their eyes.  

ABOVE: Eyes make them come 'alive'.   

5.30 pm:  And I've had to stop sewing.  My eyes were losing focus, everything was becoming blurry.
Clearly had enough of close work.  7 hours sewing today.  Quite enough.

Came inside and got me heat pods and blankie on,  and I'm set for the evening.

I made really good progress on all three Fish Runners today.  Tomorrow I'm taking a break.
I hope.

Certainly on the downward slope now!  I am starting to dream about my birthday dinner!  It can't come soon enough, this has been a long challenge!
But so worth it.

Friday, September 29, 2023


 Initially I had planned on making another Reindeer Runner today, but I've changed me mind.

There's enough in the stash to be going on with, so I am going to make a few more Kiwiana Braid Runners.  I think I have one or two left?

Not sure.  But as they are great sellers, I really should make more.

Before that though, I will be off for a lake walk with Lacy.  Not sure what the weather is like outside.  I will find out when I actually get outta bed eh?

It's supposed to just be cloudy this morning, with rain in the afternoon.

ABOVE:  This tickled me fancy.  I dream of donuts.  And Taco Bell chips. And Chinese takeaways.  And hot dogs and chips. And... oh hell!  You get the drift.  😂😅😂😋

10.24 am:  I left early today, did a little grocery grab, then picked Lacy up for our walk.

It was DAMN COLD and blowing a gale around the lake today.  We had to fight a head wind 2/3rds of the way around too, so it wasn't that pleasant.


ABOVE: We improved on our BEST TIME by 2 seconds!  So happy with that.

ABOVE:  Looks nice eh?  It doesn't show how cold it was!

ABOVE:  These geese are the 'unfriendly' ones.

ABOVE:  And there goes the hissy, nasty one... telling me to piss off!
I pissed off.

ABOVE: Lacy chased him away.  He was all talk, no do.  😂😆😅

Now I'm home, and am about to head off to the sewing room.  I've finally decided to make three Fish Runners, then Kiwiana ones.

So ... I'll be back later.

ABOVE:  Lacy came around after our walk and cleaned her car.
It needed it!

ABOVE:  And I got on with preparing the backgrounds for these three Fish Runners.
Lots of quilting.  Now on to cutting out fish.

6.23 pm:  And I got all the fish cut out and ironed onto the backings.  Getting all three ready for stitching has taken me ALL DAY.
And my back is bloody killing me.
So, I've stopped for the day.
Stew is home so it's now time to spend time with him, and watch some mindless TV till bedtime.

Not a bad day today, I'm really enjoying having wraps again.  They are such a nice meal.

Thursday, September 28, 2023


 For the past 9 weeks our son Steve has been totally off all his medications for his Pancolitis and Crohn's Disease.

His health has declined considerably as a consequence.

He did this because he was being considered for a Global Clinical Trial of a new drug, specifically for his type of conditions.

He's had several tests over the past few weeks, to determine his current state, without being on any medication:   (bloods, chest x-rays, colonoscopy, inflammation levels etc).

Yesterday he finally went to the hospital and was given the first two injections of the new drug.

IF he is on the new drug!  He could also be on a PLACEBO.  Remember, this is a Clinical Trial. They need some of the people on the trial to take the Placebo!

I hope like hell Steve isn't one of them.

IF he is, and his health declines further, they will automatically put him on the new drug.

So... it's a wait and see game now.  BIG fingers crossed he is on the new drug, and he improves hugely over the next few weeks.  I will update on him as time passes.

Back to today.  I'm getting on our treadmill for 35 minutes this morning, and the cross trainer for 5-10 minutes.  Then I will be straight into the sewing room to finish off the latest Reindeer Runner.

At some point during the day I am going to the supermarket to get a couple of things to tide us over for a week or so.  Just meat, fruit, wraps and so on.

OH and I might even visit Bower Bird (fabric shop) to get some more threads.  I looked at what they had at Spotlight yesterday,  and they didn't have what I needed there.  Hopefully Bower Bird does.

10.48 am:  And it's been a very slow start today.  I have done some housework, got myself presentable and had 'brunch'. 
I woke up hungry, which isn't normal for me.
So anyway, I listened to me belly and had my wrap for brunch instead of lunch.

ABOVE:  The weather is bloody awful.  Yet the sun is shining right now.  I say now, cos it won't last.
There's so much water on top of the pool cover I'm having to syphon it off every couple of days.  It's wonderful seeing our maple tree with leaves again, it gives us some privacy again.
The trees we planted last summer are growing well and should fill the other gaps soon.

I'm now pondering if I go out now, or later on this afternoon?

Well I went out.  To Spotlight, Bower Bird, David's Emporium and Sewing Machine World.
Two and a half hours later, and I have the threads I needed, plus one tiny piece of fabric for Reindeer muzzles.   
I couldn't find any fabric for the Reindeer's legs and arms, so will be going to Ribbon Rose on Saturday ... they are bound to have what I need.

ABOVE:  Three different shops, three differing types of threads.  $235 later.  This is the hidden cost of sewing using the applique technique, you use a lot of threads.  I bet the average person doesn't even give a thought to the cost of threads!

ABOVE:  I had a very proud moment or two parking today!  I never usually even attempt Parallel parking, cos I really, really suck at it.  But I thought, well the gap is BIG.... so I did it.
And it worked!  I didn't make a boo boo at all.
YES it's a little car/big gap, but normally I'd not even try.  I'd drive miles to find an easy spot to park rather than attempt it.   I think that's like the second time in 5 years I've parallel parked.
I need a medal.  

Right  ...  I'm home and ready to finally start sewing for the day.   And it's 1.40 pm.
Something tells me I will be sewing into the evening tonight.

ABOVE:  4.19 pm, and there you have number 16 Reindeer Runner.  And phew, I'm about ready for a break.
I think I'll not start number 17 today.
I might just be a lazy tart and do nothing else all day!
Stew is due home soon, and he will be off to the pub.  I'm almost tempted to join him.....

BUT I didn't.  I dropped Stew at the pub and spent a couple of hours visiting Steve and Bex, until Stew wanted to be picked up.

We are now home and yeah, not gunna be doing much now.  Bedtime in 3 hours.  TV till then.

Just over 3 weeks to go.  I really am missing some things now.  Worst when I see someone eating a takeaway... or I drive past a Subway.  *sniff*
This challenge has been easy some days, and hard on others.
I wonder if I'll ever do it again?


Wednesday, September 27, 2023


 Well, after last night's weigh in, I'm AGAIN having to re-think what I'm doing diet wise.

It's a never ending battle to get the balances right.

I've been REALLY good with my portion sizes, so it must be my food choices that are 'off'.

Grrrrr.  I bloody well refuse to be a rabbit and eat lettuce salads non stop.  So I'm going to try hitting reset again.  Only this time I'm going to do something I hate.

Eat more fruit and veges.  I eat NO FRUIT usually.  And only a very select number of veges.

Let's see if that helps.  BACK TO WRAPS I think.

Lacy and I are off walking this morning.  Perhaps Amanda too?  Not sure yet.

I AM going to do a few small jogs, to mix it up.  As long as I'm careful, it should be ok.  I'm much fitter now as Lacy keeps reminding me. And there's less stress on me knees now my weight is coming down too.

ABOVE:  Number 16 is almost ready for stitching and titivating. I just have to muck around with placement a bit.   I'm starting to run out of theme ideas for the reindeer.  Any ideas appreciated.  But don't suggest anything complicated!

Remember we already have 'behind the fence', 'presents', 'christmas tree', and 'on the roof'.

Right, I'm off to start me day.

ABOVE:  First thing I did this morning was get some wraps and chicken out of the freezer.
Then, got some washing on.
Made the bed.
All the usual morning stuff.

Then, off to pick up Lacy and go for our walk.
We did a quick pace today...

ABOVE:  Our new second best time.  I only did one small jog too.
But one thing Lacy insisted we do was do a couple of exercises at the 'outdoor gym', which is over by the Yacht Club.

ABOVE: We did a few steps, I did the low one, Lacy did the middle one.  Then some weights using those weights on poles.

ABOVE:  We fed the duckling family, and I got hissed at by the boy goose.  He shut up when I gave him some seeds.

ABOVE:  It was a cold, blustery day, with the odd shower.  This was on the wind protected side of the lake.  I thought it was lovely that flowers were breaking free from the rushes.

After the walk I stopped in at the supermarket and bought some lettuce, carrots, red onions and cucumber for my chicken wrap.  
And now, it's lunch time and I shall make my wrap, then head off into the sewing room.

Thanks for the Reindeer ideas... there's a couple there that might make it into fruition.

1 pm:  And I turned my sewing machine on, and this came up:

ABOVE:  Hmmmm.   So I checked the Instruction Manual.  It said if it needed oiling, a 'professional service person' needed to do that.
So, before I go to that EXPENSIVE option, I decided to clean under the plate.

Something I hate doing, cos for whatever reason, I always have trouble lining up the bobbin case afterwards, and the machine goes mental at me!

Today I took a photo of the bobbin case placement, so hopefully I get it back in correctly.

Next, take off the plate...

ABOVE: And HOLY HELL!  It was probably the worst it's even been!  Maybe that is why the thread cutter stopped working a few weeks ago?
I'm a twit.
Half an hour later and I had vacuumed all the fluff out, and using tweezers had removed all the threads.

Next.  Put the bloody bobbin case back in, screw the plate back on and try the machine.

BIG breaths. ..... and it went!  Thank god for that.
I've lost my shit over that bobbin case clunking and clanging cos it wasn't in properly once too often.

Now I'm gunna sew.  

6.37 pm:  Well cleaning out the machine certainly made a huge difference!  The thread cutter works again, and the machine notifies me when the bobbin is about to be empty too.
So maybe I better clean it more often eh?  lol

Stew is  home, I just made him a lovely wrap with salad stuff and bacon.  He is really enjoying it.  I had a chopped up pear and two tablespoons of Natural Yoghurt, which was very nice as well.

I didn't finish the latest Reindeer Runner today, so that will happen tomorrow.
But for now, I'm going to snuggle under my blankie and enjoy some mindless tv till bedtime.

Catch ya tomorrow.

I can't believe I'm almost at Day 50!  I am so proud of myself for sticking with this personal Challenge.  

Tuesday, September 26, 2023


ABOVE:  This is number 15.  He's all ready for stitching and titivating.

So, that is what I am doing today.

Not much else that I can think of.

Just the usual, a bit of housework before I head into the sewing room.

I will get on our Cross Trainer for a break from sewing around midday.  Have some lunch, bla bla bla.

ABOVE: On my dining table ... flowers and ferns.

And pretty, glittery lights.  Cos I can.

ABOVE:  I copied this meme, then pondered it.

I am very, very close to my second 'goal', and after attaining that, I need to re-evaluate where I want to be.  Not where I NEED TO BE, because who is the judge of where I need to be?

Certainly not Weight Watchers, or anyone else.  It is entirely up to ME, and how I feel.  Both physically and mentally.

This weight loss has been slow, much slower than I anticipated at the start of 'this round'.

BUT, I am perfectly happy that it's taking longer, because it is STAYING OFF, and I am maintaining the losses.  Gotta be good eh?

It is Weight Watchers this evening.  I am praying I get to my next goal.  But if I don't, next week for sure!

1 pm:  And I've been sewing for 5 hours solid.

And this is what I got done:

ABOVE:  Number 15 is done.  And I just love him!  
I am now taking a break, I need me lunch.

After that I will stop sewing and actually tidy up the sewing room ... it needs it before I start on the next runner.

I'm not going to get to my second goal today.  I stood on the scales. Might be a tiny gain?

I just don't understand that!  I have been doing all I should this past week.  Under eating even.  THAT might be the problem.  ***Grrrrrr***

I suppose I will have to see what the WW scales show.  But certainly not a good loss.

Feeling damn crabby as fuck right now.  What else can I do???  STARVE?  

So weigh in.  I lost 100 grams.  That's not even a piddle!  Pfffft.  Not impressed.

I talked to the WW Leader and she thinks I'm not eating enough.  *sigh*

So, sitting in the meeting and it's like 6.15 when I suddenly remember I've left a pot of sausages on the stove... GOING.

FUCK!  Quickly ring Stew, hoping he's home and has saved the house from burning down!!!

NO ANSWER.  So I RUN to my car and speed home.

He's home.  Was in the loo.  He got home in time  to save the house, and the sausages from imminent demise.


I have NEVER EVER EVER  done that before!

OMG that was scary.

And now I'm cooking dinner.  Cos I need food apparently.

Those sausages were... well done.  But OK.  After dinner we did our usual evening routine... TV. Sudoku (him) and me watching some videos while also watching TV.  We 'multi task' ... lol.

Now, time to say 'Catch ya tomorrow'.

No temptations at all today.  Cos I stayed home!

Monday, September 25, 2023


 Start of a new week.

I will get me washing on, tidy the house, water the plants then head out for a walk around the lake.

All going well... Amanda and Lacy will be joining me.   And perhaps young Liam too.

The weather forecast is looking good for our walk, no rain, cloudy.  So hopefully not too hot either.  

Once I get home I will be finishing #14 Reindeer Runner.  He's looking really good.  

ABOVE:  Talking of runners, I somehow mucked up the Reindeer #'s.  So I'm actually working on #14, not #13 as I thought.  

Just clearing that up for myself really.

Well that weather forecast was wrong. Its raining. So Amanda isn't walking today. I still am. Not sure about Lacy yet, but she probably will join me.

11 am: We were very lucky, and it only rained for the first 5 minutes of our walk this morning.

Usually we pass at least a couple of dozen other walkers around the lake.  Today?  Only three.

Why don't people like walking in the rain?  It's so nice!

Anyway.... moving on...

ABOVE: Whoops!  I managed to park in a bit of a puddle, and as it was quite deep, we moved.

ABOVE: Just an 'I was here today' photo.  As ya do.

ABOVE: We sat and watched a few cars go through a flooded section of the road...

ABOVE:  And then it was our turn...  did I drive through the middle to avoid the water?

ABOVE:  Hell no!  That would have been boring.  Lucky Lacy put her window up!  😂😉😅

ABOVE:  Not breaking any records... just a good walk to get the heart rate up.  

Now that I'm home, I'm cooling down so will put something warmer on, then head off to the sewing room.

ABOVE: And there we have #14 finished.
I'm now taking a lunch break (it's 2.48 pm).

And now it's 5.20 pm and I've been working all afternoon, laying out THE NEXT freakin' Reindeer Runner.
I have three finished for the pre-Christmas markets.  I think I should have 6 at least, so I can't stop yet.

Lucky I am enjoying making them.  😊😉

7.53 pm:  And it's the end of the day.  It's been a good day, loved me walk, loved finishing another Reindeer Runner.
Stew is home... quite love him too.  lol
Catch ya tomorrow.

Just 26 days to go!  Time is flying by.