Friday, 27 March 2009

Today I am creative...

Today I would like to make bread. But if I make bread I have to fire up my wonderful old four oven Rayburn wood stove (that also heats my bath water) so I can cook. I don't have any sort of instant cooking facilities. Not even a microwave. My Best Sister Noela gave me the dear old (60+ years old) Rayburn as a house-warming present when I bought this house.
A literal and figurative house-warming present.
It is wonderful for winter with the old iron kettle singing and lovely cooking smells of soups, stews, bread and cakes. And all at once!

I am working on a Bush Fire Quilt. I started it a few weeks ago in a working bee with Nada who owns the quilt shop in Sunbury. There were a few donated Cobblestone Blocks and I made more. It isn't at all large (yet...?), the blocks are 6" finished so this is only 3'6" x 4'. I don't know whether to make more blocks or to add some different borders.
I had meningitis at Christmas 2005 and since then my brain doesn't always work how and when it should. I can't think what to do with this. I used random 2½" squares and scrap blues and reds for the cobblestones. I used to make a quilt in a blink and this is brick wall so very frustrating. I have had a meningitis week and feeling very blaaah.

This is one quilt I made before my brain went silly. It was a community project, a quilt for the new extension and renovation at Castlemaine Library. I thought if we got something that was about 3' x 4' we would be able to hang it on a small patch of wall.
I had 25 women helping, only one of whom had ever made a quilt before, some had never even threaded a needle.
I handed out 8" pieces of black homespun, and explained a few techniques for making "a bit of a book shelf" - applique, photo transfer, embroidery etc etc. Judging by how terrified some of the participants looked I only gave them a small slice of the shelf, if they looked more confident they got maybe a 10" or 12" piece.
And then I sent them home.
They kept coming back for more and when I had 21 metres of "shelf" I had to tell them to stop!!! We wouldn't have had a wall in the Library big enough to hang it on! The Library Quilt ended up 1.9m x 3m. There are pictures of it's gestation here.

I made a quilt for my nephew, Frosty. Ages ago - another pre-brain fade quilt.
The material I used for this Stack and Whack design is shown in the label (below). I loved the way this turned out - not all girly for a gorgeous boy. Frosty is now studying aeronautical engineering - at Uni four days a week and flying high on the fifth. A wonderful life, he was born to fly!
I made a salad of vine ripened tomatoes all juicy and smellsome, basil freshly picked from my garden, and slices of brie, all dribbled over with thick balsamic and left to steep for a couple of hours.
Served in a Woods Ware Jasmine bowl and eaten with one of my great grandmother's forks.

I think every so often I shall give you a glimpse of my home.
The house is mud brick and rammed earth with red bricks on the floor downstairs (you can see the floor in the photos of my meals). There are lots of old posts which came from Victoria Dock holding up the roof. My home is also called Banaghaisge - I had lots of adventures and interesting experiences before I got to own this place - my first ever house! It was a wreck when I found it, no power, truckloads of rubbish to be carted away, holes in the floors and roof... There is still lots that needs to be done but it feels like a peaceful haven now.
This is the front door.
Come in!


Not Waving but Drowning said...

Newly cooked bread must be just one of the most homey and welcoming smells in the world.

I'll have butter and strawberry jam on mine please.


sallyh said...

Love your doorway - it does indeed look like a peaceful haven and so welcoming - enjoy your bread!