Category Archives: School

Made It.

School is finally done. I’ve brought home my chocolate stash and my wine stash and my soap stash and Henry’s teacher seems happy with the addition to her coffee stash.

We made her a tote from one of the coolest coffee bean sacks and lined it with just about the last scrap of my coffee canvas fabric. The sacking is really difficult to sew, being so coarse and quite loosely woven but if you shoot it full of steam, you can sculpt it into quite stable shapes. The tote looked kinda sad with nothing in it so, despite knowing she would be inundated with festive food, we added some fancy coffee, some nice cookies and a mug full of chocolates.

And then there was the end-of-school tradition of a trip to the forest to choose our Christmas tree.

And finally, calling in at the pharmacy on the way home to buy antihistamines for those of us allergic to pine trees but who wouldn’t have Christmas any other way.


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Filed under School, Summer


It’s become something of a tradition that I make my keenest little technologists a pincushion to take with them to high school. I’d already made them needle books from scraps of linen but I really struggled with the design for this year’s pincushion and I started and abandoned at least 4 ideas. A chance comment from one of the girls lead to a light bulb moment and a quick scrabble in the ribbon box.

None of my technologists were born in New Zealand and they’re all very proud of their countries of origin so everyone is getting a flag! This is the Union Jack I finished last night and currently on the go are two red Chinese pincushions with flowers in place of stars.

I’m really going to miss this bunch when they leave the nest next week.


Filed under School, Sewing


Still going strong. We don’t finish until the middle of next week. But reason #291 why I love my school:



Stinking hot day, shade of a willow tree with the river running through.


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Busy Bees.

It’s all on for Christmas in these last few weeks of school. Some of the girls are making small table toppers using log cabin blocks. The pretty flowery scraps were a gift from Jenny.


Maddy and Hannah found a Christmas tree made from stacked circles of felt in a current mag and are making lots these wee cuties for themselves, their friends and their teachers. The original pattern uses beads sewn on to look like baubles but Hannah has worked out how to add Christmas LEDs instead. This is one of their trees-in-progress.


Josh made his Dad a holiday apron and now he’s making some matching tea towels. He drew the Kombi van, which they spend the summer traveling around in, with his sewing machine. ¬†For the 4 weeks they are on tour, his Dad is the chief cook and bottle washer.


Sophie defaulted to traditional Christmas colours and is stitching some strip patchwork coasters for gifts. She sewed the strips right onto the batting and, instead of binding, she used the fancy machine to decorate the edges.


And Linda, as creative as ever, is turning fluffy socks into cute little teddies. She has no younger siblings or cousins to give these to so the teddies are making their way to the local doctor’s surgery as Christmas gifts for tiny patients.


Every lunchtime my room is a hive of activity. It’s a joy-filled place to be.

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Filed under Making, School


Once my kids reached high school I encouraged them to continue with end-of-year acknowledgements for their teachers. Individual gifts were usually replaced by cards and special words of thanks, simply because of the large number of teachers they have every year. So few high schoolers ever bother that any card or gift I received was always treasured – truthfully, the number was so small I still have all my cards from 20 years of teaching in a drawer of my china cabinet!

So it warmed my heart when I came across my eldest boy, who is signing out of school today, fussing with paper and string at the kitchen table.

Good old Pinterest.

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Filed under Jono, School

Camp – Day 4

Daisy chains.

Crowning little girls since… forever.

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Filed under School

Camp – Day 3

Breakfast spreads. Honey barely touched while the yeast extract is scraped to the bottom of the jar.

Kiwi kids. Happy Little Vegemites since 1923.

It puts a rose in every cheek.

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Filed under School