Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter Balloons

As it happens it's 'Lift off Levin' this weekend. Ballooners from all round the country flock to Levin for a long weekend of ballooning. Flying or watching. Thought I'd share a few pics with you. We didn't go out to see them, these balloons flew over our property. 

You couldn't see them, but you could hear them, hissing,
hear the sound of the gas as it was turned on and off, so we knew there was a balloon somewhere above us.

We would have had a better view if we didn't have so many large trees all around us.
But we sat outside for ages watching them all float by.
Very pretty.

Sorry the photos aren't too good,  I don't think I'd had breakfast or a cuppa yet!

Then they disappeared off south of us.

They were flying over three days, but today it's raining, so I guess they'll have a day of telling stories and catching up on the ground. 
They were lovely!

Mustn't forget, the day 6 fat quarter winner was picked from the comments left and guess whose name got picked out this time? 

There are 2 fat quarters left, let me know which one you'd like with your address and I'll get it to you.

the dusty pink in the front is still available
and the brown with the daisies
So I will give away the last fat quarter with this post. 
Hope you've all had a lovely Easter!

Carole x

Saturday, March 30, 2013

My first class -Michelle

I have decided my first class will be a mini blackboard class at the Krazy Cow Quilts. 
The class will be held on Saturday 13 April, from 10am to 12 noon. 

These mini blackboards have 101 uses and make gorgeous gifts. If you want to be well organised you could make some as Christmas gifts!

Class cost $25.00 and you will be doing some machine and hand stitching. 
You can book through Krazy Cow Quilts, or contact me for a seat. Limited spaces available.

Last year I gave away a bundle of fabric, and then felt awful because so many people left comments and I couldn't give more people fabric.

With 3 more fat quarters left, day 5 draw has gone to: Michelle. Congrats Michelle, let me have your address. If you scroll down, there are 2 brown, the dusty pink and the tiny heart fabric left. Let me know your choice. 
Two more fat quarters to give away.

Hope you're having a great relaxing weekend!
Carole x

Friday, March 29, 2013

Happy Easter!

This picture is taken from the from 2009 and I think it sums up my idea of Easter Heaven! Imagine if you were a child and you stumbled upon this tree!

Hope you all have a lovely enjoyable Easter, and no over-dosing on chocolate!

Oh and the winner of the fat quarter for day 4 is Jen. Thanks for your lovely comments.
You'll need to scroll down and tell me which fat quarter you'd like, and let me have your address. My email address is on the right hand side of the blog. 

Back soon
Carole x

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Some exciting news...

Those of you who follow me on Face book will have heard my exciting news.

I have been offered work one day a week at a local quilt store here in Levin. As I don't work on Fridays this is awfully convenient!

The store is called Krazy Cow Quilts and is located on the main state highway in the old railway station building at the southern end of Levin. As you would expect is full of delightful and exciting things!
Trish the lovely owner is happy for me to make projects and teach classes.She also stocks my gift lines, like lavender bags, buntings and cards. 

This fabric was crying out to be made into something isn't it gorgeous, mmmm, this space!

I have started a Facebook page for Krazy Cow Quilts, if you have time, pop by and say hi! Or if you're driving past on a Friday, pop in and say hi in person!

So I am going to be extra busy and am busy planning my first class.  I'll keep you posted!

Today Janelle's name got drawn from the hat for day 3 winner of the fat quarter! Scroll down and choose a fat quarter Janelle. (The pink on pink and the little green circle have gone).

Call back soon,
Carole x

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

I discovered this video a couple of days ago and I thought I'd share it with you.

If you've ever wondered about making a matching pillowcase for your quilt here are some very easy instructions for a pillowcase with french seams!

Let me know how you get on!

And because it's my blogiversary I'm giving away another fat quarter!  
LINDA, your name was drawn from the hat for day 2! Scroll back and let me know which fat quarter you'd like. (The pink one is gone.) 

Carole x

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

still on a wee birthday high...

birthday cupcakes...

Hey Suztats you have a fat quarter coming your way from day 1. Pick out the one you want and let me know!

I will be sending another fat quarter away from the comments left today!

Carole x

Monday, March 25, 2013

And you know what happens in March?

Guess what?
March is the anniversary of the Madness and Mess blog!
But I'm sure you knew that right?

I've amazed myself by blogging for six years! 
And as usual I like to do a small give-away to celebrate my
lovely blogging sisters out there. 

So for the last 7 days of March I am going to give away one fat quarter
every day.

Each day I will randomly pick one name from the comments left
that day. That person will get to pick which fat quarter
they'd like.

So thank you for your friendship, and I know that sometimes I 
don't get time to reply to each of you personally, but I love hearing from you!

So get your comments in and I'll let you know if you've won a fat quarter.

In the mean time, have a piece of celebratory cake! 

Have a fantastic weekend!

Carole x

Friday, March 22, 2013

a little shelf decoration

a perfect place to hang some paper bunting
thanks Traci, they're perfect!

Carole x

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

a few more photos

If you happen to be in Taupo during symposium call in and take a look at the tutor's 
exhibition and let me know what you think of mine up close and personal!

Carole x

Monday, March 18, 2013

working on an exhibition piece

The tutors at national symposium in July need to submit an item for the tutors exhibition. 
I think you might have seen glimpses as I've progressed. 

I've reached the stage where I need to embellish and you know how much I love to embellish!

I'm using vintage buttons, ribbons, cottons and laces and little bits and bobs that blogging friends have sent me.

Each addition adds charm and interest. 

The piece is going to be about 25" by 30" and is starting to come together nicely. 

I'll be back with some more photos soon.
Carole x

Saturday, March 16, 2013

this and that, oh and a wee canoe trip - wanna come along?

First off I just want to say thanks to all those who have left me comments over the last few weeks. I love reading them and hearing what you're up to or what you think of things. I seem to have also received loads of spam comments of late, not sure if it's happening in general all round the blog world or I've been singled out for some extra attention? So if it gets any worse I will have to make the comments a little more challenging, sorry.

Ready to head off
It's been a pretty hectic few weeks and some how I can't see it slowing down much! Last weekend Mr M&M and I did a canoe trip down the Whanganui River. I have never done it before, despite living in Whanganui for 16 years. Both Mr M&M and our youngest daughter have done it many times and know the water way and rapids well and are skilled paddlers.

Photo bombed!

There were 7 of us doing the trip and I thought I'd share a few pics with you. The trip was to be 3 nights camping along the river with 4 days of paddling. Getting in at Whakahoro and getting out at Pipiriki.

Day one on the river
Every day was scorchingly hot. No breeze, just hot searing sun. We stopped often to swim and to make cups of tea. We had a 10km paddle to do. Some of the gorges we paddled through were amazing. Tranquil and quiet with only the sound of wildlife or water to be heard. There were a lot of wild goats grazing in the upper part of the river.

The M&M family
Of course I didn't take many photos as my camera was stored safely and when I did get it out I didn't have my glasses so I couldn't tell what I was taking a photo of anyway!! LOL But I had to catch a pic on the power house in the back of my canoe! (My hero).

Mangapapa campground for the first night
At night we heard kiwi calling and moreporks. And there were plenty of possums in the trees around us and at some campgrounds we noticed little foot prints in the sand which probably belonged to rats. The evenings were warm, but the ground was hard! My sleeping mat just didn't replace my bed at all.

Early morning vistas
Every morning we waited until the mist had risen and the sun broke through. We took our time getting on the river and we ambled down the river stopping frequently to swim and stretch.

Day 2 on the river
You can see our canoe was packed with our gear. Our sleeping bags and tent gear was in the big barrel and our clothes were in the small barrels. Our food was packed into the chilly bin.Although the river levels were the lowest they've ever been, there was enough water in the rapids to swamp our boat if we weren't careful.

2nd night at Mangawhaititi
Our campground on the 2nd night was gorgeous in a grove of native bush. However, it was the most difficult to get to. We had to haul the barrels up steps built on the side of the cliff face. We paddled 30 kms during the day and it would be fair to say we were all ready to crawl into our sleeping bags and sleep!

Track into the Bridge to Nowhere
On the 3rd day of paddling we stopped so that some of us could walk into the Bridge to Nowhere. This bridge was built over the Mangapurua Stream but there are no roads to or from it. It's really popular with the tourists and the jet boat companies bring them up several times a day.

Standing on the Bridge to Nowhere

It took us about 30 mins to walk to it. I found the bridge a sad reminder of the people who had once lived in the area. In 1917 soldiers returning from the First World War were given land in this valley to farm. In 1935 the government of the day decided to build the bridge and make roads to open the area up providing a route for the settlers of the area to reach the river and other towns. But the area proved to be so remote and unfriendly that the government never built any roads.
About 30 families took up the offer of free land and went about clearing the bush, building homes, farming stock, building a school and trying to survive. But the conditions were tough, especially during the winter months. They were isolated and it was difficult for them to get out and for supplies to reach them.
By 1942 most families had walked off the land only 3 families remained and as a result the government decided to no longer provide support to these settlers and closed the settlement down.  Now all that remains is some signage with settlers names and the bridge. If you hunt carefully you may find an old brick chimney, or an exoctic tree amongst the natives.
I think it's sad to think of how hard life here in the valley would have been and what a raw deal these hard working families got.

Bridge to Nowhere amongst regenerating native bush
It would have been an amazing feat of engineering to build the bridge in the 1930s. We walked back to our canoes to meet the others and have some lunch and a swim. Today was a 25 km paddle.

Tieke Marae
Our last night on the river was spent at Tieke. The campground joined a marae (a maori meeting house). The campground was packed with tourists and suddenly it didn't feel like a wilderness trip any longer. I enjoyed looking at the caving and in the morning we watched to mist rise. To me the meeting house looked like it had the perfect place to be, amongst all the native bush and ferns. I wondered how many of the tourists appreciated the beauty of the place, or if it was just another place to sleep en route to the 'get out point'?

The view from Ngaporo campground
Our last day on the river was another scorcher and called for more swims. This is the view from Ngaporo campground and one you find on all the postcards, we never stayed here, but it would have been very nice. Perhaps next time? We had 15kms ahead of us to paddle. From here down there were lots of jet boats on the river shuttling people to and from. We had to make sure we didn't get tipped out in their wake. I thought they were a little disrespectful to all those people using the river in canoes.

Pipiriki Landing
Then at 4pm we quietly arrived at Pipiriki, a place of much activity during the early years of the river. It was well known for it's huge guest house Pipiriki House, which burnt down many years ago, and for the house boats which moored between Pipiriki and Whakahoro. In the early 1900s it was very fashionable to take a trip on the Whanganui River and stay in a house boat or at Pipiriki House.
We were all exhausted and looking forward to cool showers and machine coffees! It was an amazing trip, no one came to grief, Mr M&M and I never fell out, and we had some great company along the way.

Well I've run out of time, and you're all probably exhausted too! lol
Gotta run, back soon,
Carole x

Friday, March 1, 2013

Welcome to March

It's here. Already. The year is moving way too fast!

I need to do more of this. 
Starting today.

What are you going to do more of in March?

Carole x