Sunday, 24 February 2008

One corner to go!!

This afternoon I started piecing the corners. I was able to do three.
The first finished corner!
Doing another corner.

Oeps, the border was too short. I had to extend the border. Not an easy task considering the pattern of the border.
One corner left, as you can see in the picture underneath.
I think I can start planning a get together to sandwich the quilt.


My eyes are itching, my ears are itching and my throat is itching. I definitely think spring is coming, as every year this itchy feeling returns, especially early in the mornings. Yes, I’m a little allergic to trees. The tree pollen season has started. For nature this is a good thing, pollination is (sadly) critical for trees to reproduce, for me this means I will have this itch for the next couple of weeks, at least till April. Lucky me, I only have a springtime allergy.

Last Thursday we had our once monthly quilt class. I showed my Star quilt and everyone was very impressed.

However when I showed my teacher the quilt top a very observant quilter saw a little mistake in one of the star blocks. Luckily you are allowed a mistake in such a big quilt (lol). Can you see it?

As quoted ‘the three feet rule: if a mistake is not visible from three feet away, don’t worry about it as it’s unlikely to be noticed’ Estelle Langslow, one of the Readers Tips in the Australian Country Threads (February issue). I’m going to take her advice; I’m not going to fix the mistake of this block.

Here are some pictures of works from two other quilters in my class. These are the compass blocks that Janny and Joke made.

This is the Christmas Star quilt of Marja.

We have some new pupils in our class: Mirjam and Tineke. Mirjam is a close friend of mine and has joined our group. Our teacher Aagje invited Tineke to join. The first picture is of Tineke and Aagje. Tineke is showing her project. The purple and green quilt is Mirjam's project.
Both are very welcome new members (additions to our class). Naturally we miss those that have left the group, but we see them when we have our bee. Coming Saturday we are going to Caroline in Den Haag. We have a get together planned. She is going to show us her new city of residence, her LQS and local quilt bookshop. We might even have some time to do some quilting or stitchery.

By the way, I finished reading ‘the quilter’s homecoming’ (by Jennifer Chiaverini) last night.

Thursday, 21 February 2008

Borders, the last couple of meters

Finished piecing the last border yesterday evening!! Do you know how many meters I have done the last couple of days? 17.2 meters!! Have to admit I still have to do the corners. Hopefully I will get at least one done tonight. Tonight we have our quilting class again and I really do need some help. But that is what teachers are for.
By the way lets not think of how many hours have gone in producing this top and definitely not even contemplate on how many meters of hand piecing I have done.
Here you see me hand piecing. I’m nearly done, only about 30 cm’s to go. Hubby couldn’t contain himself; he had to make a photo. It is a nice site, seeing me there sitting underneath this huge quilt top.

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

More parcels

Today was a great day for me, as I received a little parcel all the way from Australia!!! A while back, I had entered an Australia Day competition that Catharine from ‘Willow Valley Store’ had organized. She asked us bloggers who were currently living outside Australia to place a comment "when I visit Australia I would love to see....."
My entry was: ‘when I visit Australia I would love to see..... the dolphins surfing the waves at sunset at North Durras beach, and seeing the kangaroos roaming behind me. I’ll be sitting on the beach enjoying the peace and quiet and feeling very happy and content. This is what Australia day means to me.
Feeling a little homesick all of a sudden!’

I might not have been the winner but second best is just as good. Soon after leaving a comment I received this lovely e-mail ‘Now lets do a little something about that homesickness....what can I send you that you just can't get in your supermarket over there that you miss from here. ………….. I am happy to add a pattern from my range too’. And look what has arrived.

I got violet crumble and a chocolate bar with macadamia nuts ;) Catharine even added one of her patterns ‘’Christmas Allsorts’’. It is going to be fun making this bag. This bag involves patchwork, appliqué, quilting and stitcheries. Isn’t this a great present?

If you have some time on your hands, do visit her blog. She has a wonderful site, it is a great read. But I admire her the most for the wonderful pictures she takes and her passion for old things.

But this is not all that has arrived.
I feel very content at the moment.

Sunday, 17 February 2008


We really tried but it just doesn’t fit!! The star quilt is becoming too big to fit in the photo.
Hubby is pretty tall (nearly 1.90) and even when he used the ladder we were still unable to get the quilt in the one photo shot. We had to take two.
In the first picture you see the left side.

Three borders have been pieced. The corners haven’t been pieced together yet. I hope to get some help coming Thursday from my quilt teacher. In the second picture you see the right side.

I still have to piece one border before coming Thursday. You know now what I’ll be doing in the evening the next couple of days.

Happy quilting.

Movie weekend

Had a lovely weekend. While piecing the borders on my Star quilt I watched three terrific movies. The movies were ‘The painted veil’, ‘A good year’ and ‘Away from her’

All three were romantic movies. ‘The painted veil’ is a slow-moving, deep and emotionally stirring film situated in China. A good romantic tear jerker. The tears rolled down my face at the end of the movie.
It was nice to see Russel Crowe again, but now in a romantic comedy. I loved the English and France romance which developed in a really beautiful situated chateau in the Provence. Hum, guess where I would love to be now.
‘Away from her’ was also a teary film. It is about a man coping with the institutionalization of his wife because of Alzheimer's disease. This film was nearly as good as the Notebook (Nicolas Sparks).

I think I will be able to finish putting the fourth (and last) border on before Thursday. And then, I will have finished the top!!

Another assessment!!

You Are a Question Mark

You seek knowledge and insight in every form possible. You love learning.

And while you know a lot, you don't act like a know it all. You're open to learning you're wrong.

You ask a lot of questions, collect a lot of data, and always dig deep to find out more.

You're naturally curious and inquisitive. You jump to ask a question when the opportunity arises.

Your friends see you as interesting, insightful, and thought provoking.

(But they're not always up for the intense inquisitions that you love!)

You excel in: Higher education

You get along best with: The Comma

Wednesday, 13 February 2008

For the curious!!

Here you can admire the first border of my Star quilt.

Monday, 11 February 2008

Star quilt update

One of the borders, inclusive the sashing has been placed! Yes, I hand pieced 2 x 2.20 metres. I only have three sides to go and then the quilt top will be finished. Wouldn’t it be nice if I completed the top by next week Thursday? I then have another class at my LQS. My teacher can help me with the corners.

Happy quilting this week, Helen

Sunday, 10 February 2008


The sun is shining and it feels like it is spring (even though the temperature was about 12 degrees Celsius). I went to Noordwijk yesterday, and had a great afternoon at the beach. My mum and sister had booked a long weekend at a hotel near the beach. As you can see we had lots of fun. The tide was coming in and Zoë found this particularly interesting.

My sister has this habit of forgetting things. This time she forgot to take the coats of the kids with her. That is why Tess looks like a Michelin girl. My sister bought only the snow suit for Tess. We don’t think she was too hot; she had practically no clothes underneath.

Driving back home!

Saturday, 9 February 2008

I have been tagged again

I’ve been tagged by a fellow Dutch blogger. I now have to translate in order to participate

The rules of the meme are:
1. When tagged, place the name of the person and URL on your blog
2. Post the rules on your blog
3. Write 7 things about yourself
4. Name 7 of your favourite weblogs
5. Send an e-mail letting those bloggers know they have been tagged

Well here I go (again):

1. Living arrangements
I live in the middle of the Netherlands with my hubby. I was born in the Netherlands but travelled the world with my parents. We lived in Cyprus, Greece and Niger. During my forming years I lived in Australia. We moved to Australia when I just turned nine. First lived in Melbourne, but we soon moved to Sydney. Fifth grade in Cronulla, 6th grade in Oyster Bay, and thereafter I went to Gymea High. We lived in Kareela. See this google map of the Sutherland Shire.

Grotere kaart weergeven

I moved back to the Netherlands after doing my HSC.
I’ve moved a couple of times in Holland, but never as much as I did with my parents.

2. Schooling
I have a PhD in Health Sciences and I’m also a registered nurse. I now work for a consultancy firm and do mostly research in the area of Healthcare.

3. Favourite food/drink
I love my coffee, especially the brew that comes out of my Espresso machine. I also like Thai, but you can get me out of bed for a full roast diner. The old Dutch traditional meals like, hutspot, boerenkool, erwtensoep or rodekool met hachee aren’t bad either. These are hearty winter meals.

4. Morning or evening person?
I’m a morning person. It doesn’t matter what time you wake me in the morning, I’m fresh, alert, talkative, and ready to start my day. However don’t wake me up late in the evening. Then you we see me in a bad mood.

5. Since when have you been quilting?
Started 3 years ago. Or to be truthful I picked it up again. I did some quilting about 10 years ago, but my PhD got in the way. At the moment I’ve got a lot of WIPs as I love big quilts. And, as you know they do take some time to complete when you piece, sandwich and quilt the by hand.
I especially love antique quilts.

6. Pets
I have two cats: Charlie and Teddy

7. Vacation
I love going to Britain, although it looks nothing like Australia, it kind of feels like home. The Lake District and Wales are particularly nice areas, although Devon isn’t bad either. Living in Europe gives one lots of opportunities to experience different cultures. I’m looking forward to the trip to Spain, especially Andalusia. I understand I’ll have plenty of input for future quilts because of the relics of medieval Islamic Spain.

8… Weblog.
I love the world of blogging. I’ve met so many nice people and I love reading about your quilt related activities. You are all so creative and busy bees. The quilt community is very international and I’m glad I’ve joined.

Here are 7 people I have tagged. It would be nice if you would continue this meme, but if you rather not don’t worry about it.
Ruth, Anne Marie, Hanne, Jackie, Kathie, Catherine, and Annelies,
If you want to join in, don’t be shy. I would love to know more about you. Request, please send me an email when you post your meme, I don’t want to miss it.

Friday, 8 February 2008

Preview of our trip to Spain

In a couple of week, just after easter I'm going with my mum to Andalusia. As it is not around the corner we've planned to make a couple of stopovers.
The first will be in France; Fontevraud L'Abbaye, then to the north of Spain; Hondarribia (2 nights), then we will travel down south just past Madrid. Our third stopover is in Consuegra. On our fourth day travelling we will finally arrive in Andalusia. We are going to a little B&B near Malaga, Benagalbon. There we will be staying 5 nights. Hopefully it will be just as sunny as today but a little warmer.

After those 5 days we will go back slowly to the Netherlands. First we will stay in a little village near Valencia (Parcent), then we travel to Catelló d'Empúries. This is near the northern boarder of Spain. Our last night will be spend in the middle of France.

To get an impression see this map.

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Another parcel was delivered today!

Quilting is nice to do, but it is also nice to read about it. I’ve bought another two books from the Elm Creek Quilts series. I like Jennifer Chiaverini’s writing style. And, naturally I want to know more about Sylvia Compson and Sarah McClure.

Some of you bloggers have already purchased ‘the Civil War Love Letter Quilt’. I’ve finally got it too. Wow, what a great book and it contains 121 patterns of quilt blocks.

To subdue feelings of homesickness I bought another couple of books from the Australian Outback Saga. I nearly have the whole series now. I’m going to have enough to read on my holidays.

As I love reading, and couldn’t contain myself, I also bought these books. Have to admit I bought them some months ago, but haven’t had the time to read them yet!

I all of a sudden have this liking for Cuban music. Some months ago I saw the movie ‘Lost City’ and loved the music they used. I also don’t mind looking at Andy Garcia. Finally bought the cd. This little item was also in the parcel.

Sadly we don’t have an Amazon in the Netherlands. But lucky me nearly delivers everything I want to order. It just takes a little longer before it is delivered. As you may have gathered the postman delivered another parcel today.

Another fortnight has passed - quilting bee time

This morning I’m able to start a little later then usual. I have to go to the dentist for my annual check up. Normally I would be already at work at this time. Now I have time to quickly write a post.
Yesterday evening we had our quilting bee. For those who read this blog regularly know that this is unusual. Normally we meet on Thursday evenings and not on Tuesday evenings. It was a small group this time, but we had a nice and productive time.
We love Quiltmania. This is the Kaleidoscope quilt that Tonny is making. If you want to know how it will turn out see the photo on the left.

Tonny, loves buying books and magazines. She even buys more then me :)
She got this months Quiltmania! Love the quilt on the front. The temptation to start on another project is huge. But I already have so many WIP's.

In the above photo you see the progress of my ''compass and house'' quilt. This house applique will be surrounded by compasses. Still have a lot to do!!
This is one of Tonny's compasses. She is making a quilt for her DH.

Another compass. Matty is using different shades of blue. This block wil look real nice, once it is finished.

Jacqueline is making progress. The color selection is a little different, but it does look great.

Look what Tonny is also making. It is not finished yet, but she will have it finished for next Christmas. She will be hanging this quilt in the hallway at Christmas time, she said.

Monday, 4 February 2008

Post from Honeysuckle Cottage

Isn't it great to come home and see that the postman left a parcel for me. The patterns I ordered sometime ago have arrived. I can start with my Christmas preparations!

Sunday, 3 February 2008

Sad time

Sometimes deciding to let go, is the hardest decision of all. But letting go is sometimes easier for those who are between heaven and earth.

I hear a voice it's calling
It's time for me to go,
Just which road i'm travelling
I guess i just don't know.

I have no fear of shadows
or what perhaps i'll find,
My sadness is for those I love
that I must leave behind.

He tell me that he loves me so
and this I realise,
I see his heart is breaking
when I look into his eyes.

You've given me much more my love
then ever I deserve,
I've loved you with all my heart
held nothing in reserve.

To you my darling children
I thank you for your love
I'll be watching over you ,
when I'm with god above.

Please recall my darlings
the good times not the bad,
Use your love for comforting
when ever you feel sad.

To all the many friends I've known
I thank you one and all,
Please give comfort to the ones
that I love most of all.

Now a voice is calling me
and soon I shall depart,
To you all I wish to give
all the love that's in my heart.

I'm praying that a family member will pass away soon. He has been in coma now for about 5 weeks. It has been diagnosed that he is clinically brain dead. I'm sure he would prefer to be in heaven. It is time to say good bye.

Research proposal!

Well I have been working as I mentioned in an earlier blog. I finished the first version of the proposal and I have sent it to a colleague. Tomorrow we will continue working on it, revising and making corrections. Wednesday it will be sent to a client. Hopefully he will like our proposal and not find it too expensive.
So this is how I spent my saturday and sunday. Thinking, thinking and writing my ideas down.

Last week I quickly popped into this store and bought these ..

Do you like them? I think they look very neat on our sideboard in the hallway.
The orchids I usually have standing on our dining table have withered away and needed to be replaced. I bought this huge pot with this plant. I think it looks pretty good. In the background you see part of our garden. It is really winter here, but slowly you can see things starting to grow.

Here you see some little snowdrops trying to make an effort. I also planted grape hyacinth
(= Muscari botryoides) and white narcissusses.

Yesterday and today I spent most of my time in my study. This is how it looks. I like my study. The only thing it needs is a comfy chair (but I don't have enough room). And, to be truthfull the wires need to be worked away. What a mess underneath my desk. The table near the red wall is my quilting table. It is pretty tidy I think.

For sunday not to be a complete waste. I think I might just get started with piecing the border of my Star quilt. I hope your weekend was a little more eventfull.