Thursday, December 31, 2009


Wow! What a strange and eventful decade it has been! Did anyone else in Australia watch the channel 9 (win or prime) television program which looked back on the past 10 years? I cried when I realized what a dramatic time it's been (Sep 11, Bali and Britain's bombings, the Boxing Day tsunami, the Chinese earthquakes, Hurricane Katrina, a black USA president, flooding, cyclones, Steve Irwin's death and our terrible Black Saturday bush fires).
We never would have guessed in celebrating the year 2000 all those years ago that so many bad, mad and wonderful things were going to happen.Here's to a safer, brighter and hopefully not nearly as quick twentyten!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!

I wish you all a blessed and happy Christmas, safe and healthy holidays, and a bright and prosperous New Years!Love and hugs, Manda.

Last Minute Christmas Crafting

Where on earth has the past week gone?! I've only just finished my Christmas shopping, not to mention my Christmas crafting.
Here's a little something I made to sit along the bench next to my stick tree. Sweet huh? So easy too! All you need is buttons, calico, a picture frame, an embroidery hoop and thread.
Then there's these little wooden ornaments I made for my friend, Helen.They only cost me $1.00 to make, yet they're so effective and beautiful!

I made a few more felt ornaments, cause I just can't resist them-As presents for our friends, I made these little surprise cans!They're so easy to make and very affordable! You get a can with a ring pull top, cut open the bottom of the can leaving the lid on a touch, pour out the contents of said can, wash out can, put lollies or chocolates in can, hot glue bottom of can closed, cover can with Xmas paper, and attach some ribbon and a tag! Too easy!

I also made this little poinsettia brooch.It's so sweet and looks great on my Xmas shirts!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Mary, did you know?

I'd finished this pillow the night before our church Christmas Carols, where they played this song, and how perfectly they fit together! I hope to never forget why we celebrate Christmas, with this cushion on the couch every year from now on.Mary did you know, that your baby boy
will one day walk on water?
Mary did you know, that your baby boy
will save our sons and daughters?
Did you know, that your baby boy, has come to make you new?
This child that you've delivered, will soon deliver you.

Mary did you know, that your baby boy
will give sight to a blind man?
Mary did you know, that your baby boy
will calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know, that your baby boy, has walked where angels trod?
And when you kiss your little baby, you have kissed the face of God.

The blind will see, the deaf will hear
and the dead will live again.
The lame will leap, the dumb will speak,
the praises of the lamb.

Mary did you know, that your baby boy
is Lord of all creation?
Mary did you know, that your baby boy
will one day rule the nations?
Did you know, that your baby boy, is heaven's perfect Lamb?
This sleeping child you're holding is the great I AM.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas Wishing Tree Tutorial

So it is Christmas, or basically Christmas anyway, and what better way to share the joy (and let your non-Santa family members know what you are hanging out for) than showing you how to make your very own wishing tree!First, start off with your general supplies-
3 different green felts (or any colours!)
Styrofoam coneNow, cut your felt into these general shapes, making sure that your felt does go all the way around your cone before trimming excess fabric.Start to sew your pieces that they fit snugly around your Styrofoam.Once you're happy with the felt placings, cut a circle to fit the bottom of your cone and blanket stitch the bottom shut.Congratulations! You now have your general tree!Now grab your next lot of supplies -
Jewels or buttons or some other type of accessory
Blue tack or glueNow put your tree ornaments together by sticking/dabbing some blue tack or glue in between your chosen jewel and thumbtack and letting it dry (if using glue).This is effective using plain gold thumbtacks too. ^
Find those catalogs that have been chucked into the recycle and go back through all those things you wanted, cutting them out as you go. Thumb tack them with your ornaments to your new tree and leave in plain sight of all family members.The other great thing about this project is that if you use blue tack, your whole tree is able to be pulled apart again, so you can always use that cone in another project once the felt wears out!

If you make one of your own, don't forget to let me know so that I can visit your blog and see it!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

It's beginning to look like Christmas...

I've not put up the big tree this year as it's simply too hot, not just to put up and take down, but to look at too, makes you feel just that bit more stuffy. So I gathered some sticks from outside and voila - instant tree.But even though the heat is incredible, I couldn't resist adding a little bit of a snow scene somewhere.Pepsi joined in, and became an ornament herself.Isn't she gorgeous?!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Giant Amazing Cactus Flower

Last night I had an asthma attack brought on by allergies, and had to be rushed to the hospital by ambulance. It's only ever happened once before, about two years ago, but golly, the stuff they put into my oxygen mask was the weirdest thing ever! It was only Ventolin, but I went all Puff the Magic Manda from it and had to have 5 doses of the stuff before they'd let me leave the hospital. I sat there blowing smoke and giggling every time a huge dose of the stuff would rise from the mask.... once I'd already had 3 doses and could breathe again that is. We really don't take the ability to breathe seriously enough until something like that happens.

Look what opened its petals today. One of my giant cactus flowers.Isn't he a beaut? It's bigger than my hand, and yet the cactus itself is quite a small plant. Want a closer look?It has little hairs all over it that are silky smooth, and little ripples all the way through it. The bud is at first fully enclosed, and then bursts open into this amazing star shape. I don't know the name of it though, so if anyone does, please let me know, that would be wonderful!
Oh, did I mention, I can breathe again!!

Edited on 19 Feb 2010 -
I've finally discovered the name of this plant! It's commonly called Starfish Flower or Starfish Cactus. And it's scientific name is Stapelia grandiflora. It's actually a carnivorous plant!
If anyone is reading this, and they have the same plant, but a different coloured/patterned flower, then contact me, as I would love a cutting of it!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Robyn's Owl Challenge

I decided yesterday that I would participate in Robyn's Otto the Owl challenge over at Daisy Quilts. So last night I stitched up this little sweetie, Angel Owl.I'm very happy with how she's turned out. Her tummy spots are embroidered around, her halo is wonky (nobody's perfect!) and her wings have jewels on them.Her beak is three dimensional and her little songbook has writing in it and on it. Can you see the title?If you'd like to participate and make your own owl, the challenge goes until the 20th.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

leaping lizards

I'm lizard crazy. You all knew that right? But I'm not nearly as mad as my friend Debbie! She owns so many lizards that I can't remember all their names, and they just keep coming!I love going over to Debbie's house every week to see all her new babies that have hatched, see how much they've all grown, and to give cuddles to all her adult lizards!
So for Christmas I decided to make her the lizard from the softies book, the one by Abigail Patner Glassenburg of While She Naps.I think he turned out a treat, and I just know Debbie is going to love him! What do you think?