April 29, 2011

Moving and Redecorating

Greenspace behind the house

I'm on the move... from a country setting on 43 acres to the beach! It's going to be great for walking and exploring a new area.  Pine Harbour has a ferry to the city (Auckland) and a French Market on Saturdays.  There are two golf courses in the area as well as 2 family sports centres (Formosa and Te Puru).  When we first moved to Auckland, we joined Formosa and used the swimming pool all the time.  My boys are looking forward to riding their bikes to the pool and the dairy.  They didn't have this kind of freedom in Clevedon.
Susan's new sewing machine

I have an entire room currently devoted to my crafts so it's hard to imagine sharing a room with my family, especially two teenaged boys. Where am I going to put my spinning wheel, fabric, sewing machines, and wool? That's the most important decision for my creative stability. I will be marking my territory tomorrow morning!  It's always fun to rearrange the furniture too.   I've decided to do some redecorating in the upstairs living room.  I'm moving the current living room suite down to the family/rumpus room along with the oversized TV (always hated that ugly thing in the living room).  I think rugby can be watched in style downstairs.  This leaves me with a new living room to redecorate completely.  I've left some Mexican glass and iron tables in Vancouver that I'm having shipped to NZ.  I think it's time to have a linen slip cover made for the pink couch and I bought some Sanderson fabric in Australia to recover either a small arm chair or large footstool.  It's all on! I'm on the look out for a new/old table and chairs to go in my new dining area. While the Kauri table and chairs were nice in the country home, it's not the right look for this house. I haven't fought my husband over the spare room yet.  He thinks it's going to be his office!  Another thing I'll be looking for is art and a feather sofa (traditional, overstuffed with rolled arms would be nice).  I've been on the Pottery Barn website and found a couple of beautiful rugs. Well, it's time to focus on the packing.  I'm watching the Royal wedding out of the corner of my eye. Bye for now!
Side view of the house

April 26, 2011

A new Country Living magazine

The UK Country Living has been my favorite magazine to find inspiration for the rural life.  But I recently came across a NZ House and Garden Country Living.  It's pure heaven from tea and scones to kitchen decor.  It's got NZ country images on the porch and in the living room. I'm loving the vintage linen. Glass and enamel ware, shabby chic country tables, rubber sealed vintage jars filling the pantry, and china tea pots to die for.  I'm telling you, this is my new favorite magazine.  I sure hope it's a regular on the newstand. Rustic ambience with stylish kitchen hobs, recipes which I have even made!

Last week, I made the gingerbread cake and the apple cake.  Check out the scrolled feta and pesto scones.  Today, I'll make the humingbird cake.

April 23, 2011

A New Homemade Escape

This is a quick update to let you all know that my Homemade Escape in real life is moving.  Sorry for my lack of posts but it's a major thing buzzing around in my mind and with so many factors to consider, (like sewing room, study, kids bathroom, kids lounge, big kitchen, parrots and neighbours) I had to focus all my attention to the decision of where to live.

We have been packing all weekend and now have a moving date -  April 30th.  Sorry knitters, May 1st won't be a good day for me to meet for knitting. You are all welcome to come to my house to unpack my kitchen! Hehe!

Friends and family will be most welcome to visit us in Beachlands. We have views of the ocean looking out towards the Coromandel.  Looking forward to getting this move behind me so I can get back to my knitting, quilting, studying, etc.

April 18, 2011

Grandmother's Garden Quilt in Australia

Here is a beautiful quilt that I came across in Patchwork Addiction, Windsor, Australia.
The quilter wanted to remain anonymous.  She was not quite finished the top of the quilt but what an amazing achievement. The hexagons are the size of a Canadian quarter or a NZ 50 cent piece. This is all hand sewn!

April 17, 2011


I've been away this week.  I was visiting my beautiful sister, Susan, in Sydney.  She was a wonderful hostess and we made great memories over her black and white quilt.  I hand quilted for the first time in years.  What a relaxing way to hang out and gab. 

We also went for lunch at her friend's, went shopping, to the movies, a yarn shop, two quilting stores, and for lunch at Riverside Oaks golf club.  It was a fantastic holiday.

Here is a picture of the gardens where George does his magic on the buxus hedge. Take a look at my knitting on the chook.
My sister, Susan

Inside sandstone house

Authentic shabby chic china cabinet

Sandstone house

Side view

Back of the house

Buxus chook with my knitting

Buxus in shape of teddy bears

April 7, 2011

Pauanui and Hot Water Beach, Coromandel

As you may have gathered, I like to escape to NZ's beautiful beaches with my family!  This weekend was no exception.  We went to Pauanui on Friday morning and had a wonderful relaxed weekend with no less than 3 days of sun! How cool is that!?  We watched Amazing Grace on Saturday for my Influencing Public Policy paper.  It was a fantastic movie! I knitted and read my magazines, hubby did lots of reading, we walked, and the boys played with their computers and LOTR models.

On Saturday, we went to Hot Water Beach and were amazed that it was April and still hot!  What a beautiful day.  The beach was busy and we forgot our sunscreen.  Oops!  I did discover this wonderful artist at the Surf Shop, doing Harakeke weaving (NZ flax). Her name is Jess White and she can found at hotwaterbeachsurfschool@live.com Enjoy her beautiful art!