Thursday, December 10, 2009

NSW Quilt Guild meeting

The November meeting is the first show of the challenge quilts for the NSW quilt guild. The 2009 challenge was about what tickles your fancy. Mine had to do with kaleidoscope quilts. The Australian fabric with native flowers added to my tickle of course.
The quilts were absolutely beautiful. Very talented group for sure.
The winner is the top picture. You can feel the sand tickling your feet. "Well done" (this is one of my favorite Australian sayings).
The quilts will travel for 2 years in Australia. I will get mine back in 2011.

Sydney Melbourne Canberra

We had a great time traveling to Melbourne via New South Whales coast. The most beautiful beaches and bush. We are planning a trip back when our son join us for Xmas. The small towns are so cute and people are so friendly. This part is not as touristic as the northern coast. You have to plan the trip and make sure you have enough gasoline between stops because you may not find a "petrol" station in every place. You also should plan you toilet stops. Everyplace will have a public toilet. Cafes and restaurants don't always have them. Look for the street signs to find the public ones. Only once I saw a note that the toilet would be close in the evenings due to increased vandalism.
We have been bringing rain to every place we go. The proof is above. The rain doesn't last too long, so just take a break or open an umbrella and have some fun.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Health is good

While in Sydney, had to see a doctor last week. Actually, 2. First a GP and than the specialist. My physician in the US answered my e-mail and suggested an local visit was in order. I tried to contact the specialist and found out that I could see one 4 months after I am due back home. I was told to see the GP first and that would determined the urgency. So I walked in a Coogee clinic and saw the nicest GP. After a complete check up I was on my way to the specialist next morning. She is a extremely nice person and doctor. Had may tests done, she increased the dosage of medicine, added 1 more and I am feeling great again. But with one small problem. One of the side effects of the medicine is insomnia. And let me tell you. I am extremely happy today. It is 4 AM and I slept for 4 full hours. This is the most I have slept in 9 days. Oh joy!
I am reading a lot of quilting magazines that a friend lent me; but nothing else gets done.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Sculptures by the Sea 2

The Sculptures by the Sea is a very popular event in Bondi. There are artist represented from many countries in the world. Not only Aussies. It is worth the time. The walk is beautiful and the art work equally so. The photo below is a sculpture on the rock wall. It is really fun. The artists are Tim & Shayn Amber Wetherell from ACT. The photo above is a sculpture by Gretchen Lothrop. The catalogue says that she was born in Boston. But I think our homes are close. Most of her prizes come from North Carolina. Such as APSU, UNC, etc. Well done!


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Photo 1 and 2 above are of Adelaide; a charming city of over 1 million people and the capital of South Australia. It has beautiful buildings, great restaurants, shopping, art events, and very friendly people. Haigh's chocolate factory is also there. It is a must visit for the chocolate lovers.
The beaches are just about 30 minutes away by tram. Since they are west of town it is a great opportunity to see the sun set on the ocean. (except if you are there on the 4 days of the year that rains. I know, I got all 4 of them.) This year is the first time in 16 years that the water reservoir is at capacity. Thanks to my visit I am sure. I have been bringing rain to every place I go in Australia.
The last photo is a view of the Barossa Valley from a sculpture park on the hills between Adelaide and the Valley. It is a great view that prepares you for the wonderful wine you will have a chance to taste. The wine is deserves all the fame it gets. All I know about wine is that I like what I like. There is plenty to like here. Another thing, keep your wallet in your purses. The tasting is FREE. But also be aware that drinking and driving in Australia has zero tolerance, so do like we did, and plan ahead by having a designated driver. Enjoy the valley and keep it safe for all.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Power House Museum Sydney

The Power House Museum in Sydney is located in Ultimo and is housed in this old beautiful building that was the power plant for Sydney. It has things for adults and kids to enjoy. Well done! This 2 pictures are part of a design show. The cool dress above is just my kind of art. The bead necklace is actually painted on the dress. I want a dress like that. I am sorry I can't remember the artist name. I think she is Kiwi (New Zealender). They have work from designers from all over the world, not just Ausies. The other picture has a white fabric on the center. It is a Japanese designer and the fabric is folded like a shibori fold and permanently pressed to keep the folds. Love it, love it, love it. Husband loved all the engines and big machine stuff they had around the place too. It was enough to spend a whole day there. Some of the other cool areas- photos are not allowed. Fair enough, you have to check it for yourself.

Gold Coast

Gold Coast of Australia is the area south of Brisbane and North of the New South Wales border. It is about 60 miles of beaches. Think Miami/Daytona Beach Florida and you get the idea. A lot of real state development. But still fun. While we were there we could see the whales and their babies playing from the beach. It was the most incredible sight. No need for a boat. I spent hours there. But this is not the norm. Most of the time you need to go out on a boat to see them migrating south. The top picture is of the rescue boat that had just come back from saving a baby whale from the net that is around the beach to protect the swimmers from sharks. This poor young one got caught on the net and needed to be rescued. The most amazing thing is that 2 adult whales stayed with the baby until it was safe and free. It took quite sometime for them to cut the net. 4 boats and 1 helicopter were there; and of course all the TV stations. I can't believe that they go out on those small boats and work. The baby alone was bigger than the boat. Not to mention the 2 adults. The other 2 pictures are of Mermaid Beach were we stayed and saw all these happening and Surfers Paradise where most restaurants, tours and shops are.

Monday, October 12, 2009

The quilt is done!. It will be part of a traveling exhibit by the Quilt Guild of New South Wales for a couple of years. It is one of 31 quilts submitted by members of the guild. Mine is called "My Australian Garden." The fabric is a print of Australian native flowers. I saw some of the other quilts in the lot; and I am glad I didn't see them before I handed mine to them. I would not be so daring. The others are amazing.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Internet ups and most downs

We are living in an apartment in Coogee beach outside Sydney. Internet connection is not one of the positive aspects of this location. We have prepaid wireless internet. That is if we take the computer to the beach. We are on our second internet provider. The first one "3" doesn't work at all in the apartment. The second one "Telstra" drops the connection off when I am sending e-mails or posting blogs. Many blogs were lost this way. But I can do it inside the apartment.
The cell/mobile phone is a prepaid by Optpus. It works; except if we leave the phone in the bedroom. (This is a one bedroom apartment). if we forget and take 7 steps north and get in the bedroom, the caller will be left talking to a dead phone. So don't try to reach for a piece of paper in the bedroom while you are on the phone. The bad part for me in the begining was that I did not have the phone cord to remind me that I could not go that far. Now, I remember. Pavlov would be so proud of me. Did I mentioned that all the above are VERY expensive in Australia?

Sand Storm in Coogee

The 2 photos above came from the local paper "southern courier" web site where people post their photos. This is Coogee during the sand storm on September 23 2009. It seems that the last one like this in the Sydney area was in 1939. It was very strange to see everything orange.
The photo above the sand stormo ones is the same bay on a sunny "normal" day.
I am still finding sand inside after many attempts to clean it all.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Challenge quilt in progress

This is a work in progress. So bear with me.
The Quilt Guild of New South Wales has a challenge every year. I have been a new member since August; therefore, I can participate in the challenge. The theme is "What tickles your fancy."
The quilt is a wall hang and the size must be 16" by 24".
It will be part of a travelling show for 2 years. The quilts are lent to groups across Australia for their program. It will be sent back to me in 2 years. This quilt will know more of Australia than I can imagine. I hope it will bring joy to the people that sees it; and that will encourage other people to try quilting. I had so much fun making it!
I didn't have a sewing machine here but the guild has one in their office. I was able to go there and borrow all the tools I needed to make it. I also met the most wonderful people in the office.
The fabric is a print of Australian Native flowers. It is a beautiful fabric. The names of the flowers are printed in the fabric, so it is a great learning tool.
The photos of the finished quilt will come soon.

Monday, September 21, 2009

happy spring/fall

Happy Spring to the ones on the Southern side of Earth and Happy Fall to the ones on the northern side. Expcept that in Australia, spring starts on September 1st, so I am a bit late. Sorry.
These photos are from a flower show at David Jones store in central Sydney. This year, to my luck, they used Australian native flowers for the display. It was just gorgeous.
I have learned the name of most of this flowers because I am making a quilt with a fabric with Australian flowers. It is very hard to pick a favourite. The red one below is called Albany Bottle Brush. I see several of these plants around where I am living. It is very pretty. I also love the Golden Wattle and kangaroo paw.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Bondi Kites

Bondi Beach had it's annual kite festival. It is called a wind celebration or something like that. The kites were beautiful. The weather was also colaborating. It was a fun afternoon in the shade for us. The UV index here is always very high thanks to the hole in the Ozone layer.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Centennial Parklands in Sydney is a complex of 3 huge parks. This is the Entertainment Quarter (EQ) where the sports arenas, Imax movie theater, shops, cafes, etc. are located. We were there on a Sunday and the school of brodcasting was having a open house. We looked around their studios and could not resist the photo with one of the props. The studio lights were all on and the photo is over exposed; but still fun.
The photo to the right is of me buying a flat white coffee while on my back is one of the white birds enjoying a little snack from the clean station. I did not notice the bird there until I turned around. I had commented that I thought this bird is so ugly that it is even cute. So the husband thought that it would be fun to have the bird and me. I see this bird everywhere but I don't know it's name.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

This large flower poster is really a whole wall in the Bondi Junction Mall. I loved the colors and shape of the flowers. I would love to make a quilt with such a design. Lots of inspiration around here.

The photo on the right is a monument on Oxford Road. It is all covered by knitting. It is an idea that started in England (I think) where knitters get together and make covers for monuments. Than when they finish they go at night and make their installation. It is a clean form of grafitti. It is pretty in person. I would have it made in red.

This is Coogee Beach. It has been a nice winter. Mild temperatures. The beach is always busy with people of all ages. This morning it was cold; but there were a few people in the water. I was wearing my coat. It is possible to walk from beach to beach by sidewalks. We have walked from Coogee to Maroubra(south) and Coogee to Bondi (north). The view is amazing.

Friday, August 28, 2009


We are here. Finally, after many days of no internet access I am back on linne. This is the Opera House at night.
I am testing the use of images in the blog. If it works well, I will start doing this more often.
Coogee Beach is our new address. It is a south of the city of Sydney. It is a beautiful tinny beach.
Bye for now.

Friday, August 14, 2009


I have arrived in Sydney well and the jet lag is not bad at all.
It took us a few days to get the internet and phone situation resolved.
We are still in the hotel. I still don't have any pictures ready to download.
I am having too much fun to figure out how to add pictures.
But I will do it soon.
The winter is very mild and daffodils are starting to bloom. It is an odd thing for August.
I grew up in the Southern Hemisphere; but I never saw daffodils in August before.

Monday, August 3, 2009

August, 3 2009

The "to do" list continues to grow before my trip. The computer "post it notes" are multiplying. I save them and use the same check list for most trips. I have items such as: program thermostat, set the hot water tank and other appliances on vacation setting. For the packing list I have items like prescription medicine, nail clipper, name and address of a physician that speaks English (or a language that I speak) in the country that I am going to visit. This is specially important when traveling with kids. You can get this information from the your insurance, that American Pediatrics Association, or the American Medical Association web sites. Your physician can also help with this.
As you can see, my post it notes are varied.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

This is the first post on this blog. I am leaving for a sabbatical in Sydney Australia for 5 months and plan to blog about my experiences there. This will be my third winter for 2009. I am a summer person! I will also blog in Portuguese, so family can follow along.
Este é o meu primeiro blog. Marido e eu estamos indo para Sydney, Australia por 5 meses. Vou escrever um pouco de la. Este será o meu terceiro inverno em 2009. E eu que gosto de verão.
Bem vindos.

Wool BOM- Moon Garden

Lisa Bongean is starting a new BOM called Moon Garden. It will be 12 baskets. Block size about 16" -17" light wool on dark cotton ...