30 September, 2005

No name quilt

Another quilt. This is the first quilt I made on my new sewing machine, just before Christmas last year. It's a lap-sized quilt and only took me a few weeks to complete (I hand quilted it and that is where most of the time went). Although (and here is how pedantic I can be), I wanted to bind it in the binding that is there now (which is the same as on the back) but didn't have enough, so went back to the fabric shop to find that they were out of it. So I bound (?) it in the yellow - same as the border. I wasn't entirely happy with it, but had little choice in the matter... until I was back in the shop a few weeks later and saw my blue fabric there again. So bought more than enough, went home and ripped out the yellow binding, and resewed it in blue. It does look much better and was worth the extra time and effort. I now have a heap of yellow binding waiting for a quilt that it is more suited to. This quilt was my own (very simple) design, and I've yet to come up for a name for it. Any suggestions? I've learnt that when you live in the tropics it's not a great idea to be quilting in the summer. All my other quilts have been quilted in the winter, when the temperature is (only slightly) more reasonable and it's not such torture to have a quilt on your lap for hours on end.

I now have to work out a design for my sister's quilt. She posted up the fabric a few weeks ago, but I've not started yet. Hope she's not in a hurry for it. I have other things on my mind. Like... job interviews! It's likely I have three next week - two in Brisbane and one here, though they are all for positions here. For the interview here, I'll have to do a presentation!!!! How cruel is that? But it's only five to ten minutes long, so should be fairly painless. In the end it would be great to have a choice of the job that I want. Wish I could choose the pay as well, but it's a government job so it's a given that the pay will be meagre.

29 September, 2005

More quilt pics

28 September, 2005

Cowboys day

Another pic from my study site -Hydeaway Bay. This was taken in the middle of winter last year (July). Almost idyllic, no?

The mayor of Townsville declared today "Cowboys Day" - trying to get locals hyped up before the rugby grand final (as if they needed it!). We didn't get the day off though. Shame....

Bringing work home really sucks! Though leaving work at 3:30 because I had to do work at home this evening made up for it (I suppose). I had time to paint some bowls I made out of papier mache (a great use for old phone books!), contemplate whether or not I should vacuum the house (I decided not), and I even took a short nap (that says I'm either really young or really old!!).

News from the Netherlands (where my baby sister is): she is going to buy a bike (when in Rome - or Amsterdam....). She's after a really crap one that nobody would want to steal... and then a really good bike lock so that nobody can steal the crap bike that they wouldn't want to steal in the first place. Is this Dutch logic?

27 September, 2005

Diving on the reef...

Another filler - this time I'm scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef with a friend (I'm the one NOT wearing the shirt around my head!!). We're actually drilling coral recruitment plates into the patches of dead coral to find out what coral species are settling and possibly dominating that area. The tank that is floating is supplying air to the drill we used to hold the recruitment plates in place. When it gets low on air it gets lighter and if you let go of the drill you have to go swim for it! All we had to do was the manual work - someone else does all the technical stuff in the lab. I think my (voluntary) role is more fun. Ah, the joys of living by the Great Barrier Reef - and having many friends who are completing their PhD's in marine science - means I get to go on many free dive trips!! I just wish I could do more of it. But now that I'm a working girl (in the cleanest sense of the word!!), I don't have much time to help out mates on the reef. This was taken a while ago (last year) but as I've harped on about quite often, I don't yet have my own camera so can't take any current pictures. Soon, soon.

25 September, 2005

You know you need to wash the dishes when you have to go to the laundry to fill the kettle for a cup of tea!!!

Well, my mother asked if I was going to watch the North Queensland Cowboys play in the (rugby league) semi finals. Being the fair weather friend that I am to the Cowboys, I decided to turn on the tv just as they scored their first try. And stayed until after they scored their fifth (final score: NQ 29, Parramatta 0). This next week Townsville will be crazy with celebrations as other occasional fans come out of the woodwork.

Cookie disaster

ShellyC sent me a chocky chip cookie recipe and I've just finished baking them. I only used half the mixture and have frozen the rest (is that possible??). I managed to forget two batches in the oven, which cooked for about 5 times the recommended time!!!

So, speaking of using the freezer, it is safe to say that the fridge is fixed. Two visits from Dr. Fridge (one of them on a Saturday) and he still only charged me $85 total (So I can still get the camera sometime soon). However I've very little food in it now (since everything in it is edible now, unlike earlier). I had plans to go to the vegie markets today to stock up on food - since the garden is producing nothing - but was just too lazy. When I say the garden is producing nothing, I lie. I got one pea pod off the scrawny vines (nothing like Dad's mammoth sugar peas) - a couple of cherry tomatoes, a few leaves of basil and a few more of rocket. I pulled out all the dying stuff I couldn't identify (later learned it was radishes, which I don't like anyway), making more room for the spring onions. Oh and some little black bug seems to be enjoying the broccoli and pak choy more than I ever will!! I know, serves me right for planting temperate plants in a tropical climate, but I can't fit a mango tree in my miniscule back yard.

Yesterday I went to the pub with friends to watch the footy final. None of us cared that it was the finals, nor did we support either team, but we figured most of Australia would be out drinking, so why should we miss out? It was a great afternoon, sitting on the grass at the pub, far enough away from the devout supporters that we could spend all afternoon chatting, with a half hearted cheer when someone kicked a goal.

23 September, 2005

Camera vs Fridge

Well, forget the new camera, I need a new fridge. Okay, not quite. The Fridge Doctor was just here - and will be back tomorrow!! In the meantime, I have all of my perishable food in a broccoli box. On the positive side, this is a good opportunity to REALLY clean out the fridge and discover the unique ecosystem thriving at the back of it. Needless to say, many of these creatures are now on their way to landfill - container and all. Dr Fridge did say it was cheaper to repair the fridge than buy a new one, so the camera purchase may only be slightly delayed.

I almost bought a camera today, but berated myself just in time and decided to wait until I knew if I could afford it. I did have my heart set on a Canon S2IS, but am now looking at a Konica Minolta Dimage Z3. I want something with a sharp macro and big zoom. Any suggestions??

I think that pictures go a long way to making a blog great, so until I get myself a camera, I'll throw in images here and there from what I've already got stored on my computer. This picture is a view of Hydeaway Bay, a tiny bay that few people know about, just north of the Whitsunday area in Queensland. I spent many weeks here last year (at times more weeks that I cared to) doing fieldwork for my honours degree. The reef flat extends out about 200 metres in places and at high tide there were green turtles everywhere. No, I didn't do too badly for an honours project, I suppose.

Thank you to everyone who has welcomed me to Blogland :)

22 September, 2005

Camera hunting

I have decided that it is time I bought myself a digital camera. It is not only so that this blog will seem almost interesting. I've wanted one for a while, but have resisted, not wanting to face the fact that my 35mm SLR is now virtually redundant (though I would never do away with it completely). So in a few weeks (or when I get paid again) I'll have a brand new toy. I can't wait.

19 September, 2005

Garden... of sorts

This image is a close up of part of my garden. This is about 1/4 of the total area. I live in a unit and my backyard is about two metres deep and 8 metres long. I have the back of my house on one side, and the horrible grey brick wall on the other. Still, I have managed to plant several vegies, flowers and other unidentifiable plants in there. I seem to plant things and never remember what I planted, and can't identify it once it thrives. It is survival of the fittest in this garden (and at the moment there are not many plants that are that fit).

I took the day off today (flex time is great!) yet still managed to get little done. Well, I baked, papier macheed (spelling?), hung on the wall some African carvings that a Mozambican friend gave to me, went for a bike ride (to buy baking ingredients), and played around on the computer. So I was productive, just didn't do what needed doing. And now it is 11pm and I still have a basket of ironing to do.. Looks like I'll iron tomorrows outfit only. It would be great if I had a decent excuse, like children or work or something else is keeping me from getting things done, but the plain truth is I hate ironing and everything else takes priority over that.

My little sister left for The Netherlands today. She's going there to play hockey for 10 months. I'm excited and nervous for her. I travelled around the world for seven years and I remember the feeling of leaving family to board the plane, not knowing where I would be the next day (well, being that I was leaving from Australia, chances are the next day I would still be on the plane). But I know my sister will have a great time exploring that country that I adored when I was there many years ago. We've agreed to meet up somewhere when she's on her way back. I suggested Vietnam, she suggested New York. Two completely different places, but I'm sure we'll compromise - and go somewhere completely different.

These early posting are really quite crap and I hope that someday, once this Blog gets developed a little more, I can come back and delete all this.

18 September, 2005

Just playing around and working out how to put photos in. This is a picture of a quilt I made a couple of months ago. I got the pattern from a patchwork magazine. It took me about two weeks (in my spare time) to piece the quilt, and about two months to hand quilt it (a couple of hours every other night). I was very glad when it was finally done. I cut pieces for a baby quilt at about 2am this morning and have just finished sewing the top. I'll post a picture of the finished quilt... one day.

I seem to be most productive when I am meant to be doing other things. Like reading papers for work, which I am meant to be doing now. I remember during exam time at uni, my house was never cleaner and meals were never more delicious, because I would do anything to put off studying. I'm tempted right now to go out and pull all the dead plants out of the garden, but I really must focus on other things...

17 September, 2005

Number 1

My first posting. I've not a lot to say, and I don't know how often I'll say it.
But I have been urged by family to get a Blog going. So I have. Not sure when I'll tell them about it, though!! I've already hit a few snags with getting pictures in and making it look just right. One day, I'll sort it out. Lets hope I have something interesting to say next posting.