Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Green Rainbow Ripple is FINISHED!!!

I am soooooo bloody excited to turn around and say one of the blankets is finished!!!

Actually it has been finished for about 3 weeks now and I haven't had time to say boo let alone take photo.

A bit of information before I show off photos. I used the rainbow ripple baby blanket pattern. It's a free pattern on ravelry, and I just kept increasing in pattern until I had enough. The yarn is a lincraft cake in greens. 

The colours are just gorgeous! And this will make such a wonderful present for my friend. 

It's difficult to get a good image I couldn't get the whole blanket easily in a photo. But these folded photos look cute. 

I did get some help holding it out in the sun but given it has 12 points she did a fantastic job.

Then I played with filters in my editing app.... who needs an excuse? But now it has such a vintage summer vibe. I really like the way the effect on this one came out!


I'm really looking forward to seeing my friend and getting baby cuddles.  I'm also really happy with how it turned out. The colour changes aren't even but I think that adds to the effect with this blanket.  

I even had yarn left over that I've already used to make a couple of items.  You can see a peek at one of them on my Instagram otherwise I'll be sharing about that very soon as I did manage photos on the weekend. I was very productive! 

Happy stitching, 
Caitlin


Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Playing with watercolours

We went to Boondoomba Dam again for Easter (a bit of a family tradition as we've been going since about 2000 ish) and I managed to get some really decent crafting time in. I did spend a lot of time reading and playing games but I took my watercolour stuff out there and I had some fun on Sunday afternoon. I will also have some photos of some crochet to share with you but I didn't get good photos so I will have to get those on a sunny day. 

I set myself up on one of the tables we had and the view was just stunning. I knew I wanted to try to capture it. I really really really want to work on being able to paint what I see better. I will get there eventually when I have time to practice more.


\I love the watercolour style where you put down the colour and then add pen outlines to it. It's just what I love to fiddle with.  Here is the picture before the ink was added (well much ink I had started the donkey before I remembered to take a photo). Nothing is sticking out very well.


As I kept going you can see it starting to pull out the details. We have such an awesome fire pit set up each year. The rocks stay there permanently and there are lots of areas to work around. We are starting to get very adept at cooking on the fire. My mum managed to bake two cakes while we were out there. Fresh baked cake is just to die for yummy!


And here is the finished picture. I kept the detail in the background to a minimum trying to make it look further away. I used too dark a green or the shadows under the trees but it's all a learning curve.


Then I started another picture after having a talk with mum and my cousin about foregrounds and backgrounds so I felt better able to get the look I wanted.  Eventually I will have a painting of this  scene below.


But not long after starting we got the only rain all weekend and I went and packed up. Then I was roped into a game of Kubb.  So here is my current position for this painting. I'm trying to keep the background lighter and the foreground brighter. We shall see how I go.


have you guys tried watercolours/landscape pictures and can give me some pointers for getting a good background/foreground definition happening?

I'm really happy with these pictures and I am looking forward to getting the second one finished. I am proud of what I achieved and hope to eventually be able to look at any scene and have the picture come out as I want it to.

Happy Stitching,
Caitlin


Tuesday, 3 April 2018

My Cousin's Wedding

One of my cousins got married a couple of weekends ago and in my typical fashion I'm a little late sharing some photos. I don't have any good ones of the bride and groom but I managed a couple of nice family photos.

I didn't manage a photo with both the kids together .... actually didn't really manage ANY really good photos of them but they had fun so that is what counts.

James was really difficult to get any sort of photo of as you can see from this photo.  But  I love this photo. The grimace is just perfect and I love how I look. It was just perfect. It's one of my favourite photos from the whole night.


I also managed to get a photo with my sister, mum and grandma which is awesome. We don't get together with all of us very often and it is lovely to get a photo.


Also the end of my 8 week challenge was the day before this so I treated myself to a new dress. It just suits me to a tee. I found a couple of nice dresses but this one just was perfect! I always love visiting portmans.  I felt so pretty and comfortable for the whole night (until it started to get cold and then I was grateful that I remembered a jumper).


Anyway I have to go organise some more photos as I managed to get some time over the long weekend to do some crafting so I will have to organise all those photos for you to share. Expect another couple of posts sooner rather than later.

Happy Stitching,
Caitlin

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

How do you find the time?

This is a question that is going in circles around my head at the moment!

I hit a wall last week where I had to get a whole pile of assignments and work done at uni and time and lack thereof got away with me. Therefore I'm asking the question of everyone else.... how do you find the time??

I spend 2 hours a day commuting to work. On top of that I do two university courses so they take 12 hours a week each between the classes at uni and the study and quizzes I have to do.

I am maintaining my fitness stuff. So two days a week I do my bootcamp and then on Saturday I participate in a 5km park run. (I just got my time down to 43minutes :D) That will all continue to be important to me as I do so little daily that I need to make the time for it.  

I find when I finally finish what I'm required to do I often just collapse on the couch and all I want to do is either sleep or read a fantasy book, for about 10 minutes before I sleep!

I truly love what I'm doing and at no point am I complaining :D Just thought I should make that clear. It's just that I seem to feel very overwhelmed with all my crafts at the moment. I have two weeks holiday from uni crazy coming up and I have something I want to achieve. I want to clean out and get rid of a lot of stuff from my craft room. As much as I can believe that I will get back to stuff I have  stashed away in there I think I need to be a realist.

Fabric is good but I think I need to sort through it all particularly the scrap yarn and sort it a bit better. I got given a whole pile of knit fabric that is sitting in my easy access drawers that I know I won't touch anytime soon (maybe next summer, maybe) and I think I need to box/bag it up and store it away in the top of a cupboard.

My scrapbooking and stamping supplies.... I went crazy (thankfully not too much) about washi tape and paper and stamping stuff. I was all into decorating my planner forcing me to put something in each week to ignore the fact that I honestly had nothing to do. I love my stamping stuff and will keep that but all my washi and a lot of the paper can be removed and used by the kids or someone else. I also have some very random stuff in there I think I just need to get rid of.

Those shelves can be used for some of my stuff for fountain pens and water colours and art. I don't think my inks will fit but I can find some use for it. I think they would work well to keep my art stuff there and it will actually be easier to access than on my floor.

I also want to go through my bookshelves and sort through stuff. I have a lot of kids drawing books and stuff that I just don't use and the kids can't use them as they are in the worst possible spot for them to access. We have a games cupboard that would be perfect for some of these books to find their way towards, where they can find them and actually use them. They don't belong where they can't be used. Then I can put my older text books down on that shelf and use a higher shelf for access for stuff I need to get to often. That is really what I need to do... with everything. I keep saying well I will get to that or I'm keeping it for this pretend reason and I need to be honest with myself.

My crafts are simple and they actually aren't very complicated but I have tried a whole pile of different ones. Now I need to simplify even more I have 2.5 years left of my degree and then after that I have another I don't know how long until I get my CPA. This doesn't leave a lot of spare time and honestly I want to spend it right. I'm tired of fighting the mess. I want to have a space that makes me happy each time I walk in and I know I'm my own worst enemy there but if I simplify what is in there I think I will be able to achieve that!

So wish me luck over the next couple of weeks as I try to find my time!


Happy Stitching,
Caitlin


Saturday, 10 February 2018

Health and Fitness

If you've been around this blog for a long time you would know I've had an interesting journey with my health over the last number of years. I was diagnosed with adrenal fatigue, about 6 years ago now which it seems is one step away from chronic fatigue but not quite there. I am pretty much healed from that though I am constantly aware of not letting myself get too worn out. BUT one thing that I stopped doing after getting diagnosed was a lot of exercise. It all made me too tired. That habit continued and when I wasn't working for 2 years instead of getting up and doing something I generally sat on the couch each day and did not much! Not a good way to be.

The best thing that happened for me was to get a job where I could get out and do something daily. I don't think I could ever happily go back to not working. I could do with a couple of days break when the craziness of university gets too much on top of working but I love my job and the kind of work I do.

If you didn't know I am currently working as a receptionist/ trainee accountant for a small accounting firm mainly doing small business and tax work. On top of that I'm studying a Masters in Business, Professional Accounting in order to be able to get my CPA and become certified. I want to see how far I can go. BUT this doesn't leave a lot of spare time and it's generally taken up by me collapsing on the couch or in my craft room trying to eke out SOMETHING for myself!

I had already been deciding something had to change, I was putting on weight, not eating right and just feeling weaker and weaker when in November last year a special offer for a local bootcamp style gym came up in my news feed on facebook and I went yes! I started going 3 times I week (5.30am which is crazy but I'm often awake anyway.) The first day I could barely lift the 6kg kettle bell! I wasn't even able to keep holding it the whole time and had to swap to nothing. Now 3 months on I use the 8kg kettlebell without really thinking. I am realising something, it is possible to be strong as a woman. We don't have to be the weaker sex, which noone has ever really explained to me in a way that stuck. This is the first time in my life where I actually feel strong. I walk around now and feel stronger. I have energy and the ability to lift what I need to. I watch one of the other ladies working with the 16kg kettlebell and all I think is one day that will be me! I want to be strong. But it is also having an effect on other things. I can breathe better with my trumpet and actually hold notes, it's amazing how big a difference that makes.

I signed up 2 weeks ago for the 8 week challenge with my boot camp to try and boost my fitness and my weight loss. (honestly not sure how much weight I'll lose because for the first time I'm actually putting on muscle which is heavier but skinnier than fat.)

This comes to the other point of this post, I signed up for a 5 km obstacle course through mud and water. I don't know why, I must be crazy but I was so excited.

Here is me before the race started.

I was all nervous and excited at once. I was really lucky I found a group of people at the start line who saw that I was by myself and took me in and I went with them the whole time.

I surprised myself, I ended up jogging most of the 6km course, yes it was longer than the 5km they advertised. There were also 40 obstacles which does fit in the 30+ obstacles but still! I have some videos up on instagram of a couple of the obstacles but I'm not sure how to add them here soo... they're on my phone not my computer.

But I can show you a photo at the end.

We got a medal when we crossed the finish line. I went through water and up walls and stuff and through mud and tunnels. I had an absolute ball. You can see that on my face, I'm tired but happy!

I am currently comfortably sore and tired now but oh so happy with myself.

My plan going forward is to keep doing my bootcamp 2 days a week and I want to add in a park run and get better at doing this sort of thing. The bootcamp is doing Tough Mudder half in May and I'm serious about tempting it if my assignments allow. I just want to start adding more challenges, I'm taking it easy and building back up to full fitness but I am so happy to be able to move again and not be afraid of failing. I did exactly what I set out to do. I attempted all obstacles and I finished the race.

What changes have you been making with your fitness?
Have you tried an obstacle race before?

Happy Stitching,
Caitlin





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