Posted in Life

Counting Blessings

Monday rolled out like any other day and went places we really didn’t expect.

Those that know us will be aware that my fabulous husband and I travel about 40mins everyday for work.  We usually do this together.  We roll out of bed at 5am.  I jump in the shower while he makes the coffee and clears dishwasher.  I get dressed and do makeup and hair while he has his breakfast.  I do minor chores like laundry while he loads the car and catches up on the news.  After 5 years of doing this we are a well oiled machine and usually on the road by 5.45ish each day.  I stabilise the coffee cups while he navigates the road.

This past monday was a little different in that we had separate vehicles as we came home vastly different times on Friday.  This is rather unusual for us and would probably occur less than 2% of the time. Normally we are together.

Thank heavens we weren’t.

Gorgeous husband left about 10 minutes before me as he had hoards to do at work and not having to wait for me meant an earlier start.

About 10 minutes into my journey my phone rang, highly unusual as it was bang on 6am, and I figured that my darling just had something to tell me that he had forgotten.

Conversation went something like this.

‘Toni speaking. How can I help?’ (You never know when a customer will be on the other line)

‘You can help me lots yea um yea’ (Standard opening to all our phone conversations but with a weird trail off at the end)

‘What’s up honey?’ (concerned voice due to weird trail off)

‘Where abouts are you?’ (now I’m starting to get concerned as that’s an odd question)

‘Tikatimu.  What’s the matter?’ (concerned voice cos he sounds odd)

‘Um I’ve had an accident.’ (he’s talking so can’t be super bad right)

‘Oh baby are you ok?’ (concerned levels are very high at this point)

‘Yea I am but the utes f#$k@d. I slid on some ice and I’m down a ditch. I’ve rung 111 and I’m just waiting on the police to arrive.’ (at this point I calm down because he’s talking, he’s making sense and he’s just waiting for the police so that tells me he’s not bleeding, all his limbs are intact and he’s probably perfectly fine.  I’m also thinking along the lines of a minor fender bender type thing)

‘Ok I’m about 10 minutes behind you so I will be there very soon.  I’ll see you when I get there.’

‘Yea you might not be able to see me as it’s a deep ditch so I don’t think you can see me from the road.’

‘You’ve rung the cops so I will just look for them’ (said with a smile 🙂 ) ‘Chances are very high that they will beat me to you’

‘Yea hopefully.  I’m just going to look for my wallet and go stand on the verge and wait for them’

‘Cool.  I’m nearly there so will see you soon.  Love you’ And I hung up.

30 seconds later I gave way to a lone cop car and thought ‘that’s them’ and nothing more.  I’m still thinking fender bender type thing.

Man was I wrong on that one.

When I go there traffic was backed up about 500m so I went inside lane with my hazards.  Some dick tried to cut me off thinking I was undertaking everyone but I got there pretty quick.

There were 4 police cars, 1 fire engine and an ambulance . . . and no sign of my husband or his vehicle.  They were also on the opposite side of the road from what they should have been.

As I got out of the car a cop came over and I explained that it was my husband off the road.  He looked at me and told me he was fine and stopped the traffic so I could cross all 3 lanes. Man it was icy.  We both slid across.

When I got to the other side I nearly shat. Ditch my great-aunt Fanny. He was standing on the back guard of the ute as it was nose first down a bank and they were helping him up . . . via rope . . . because he was 20 metres straight down!

The only reason I could see him was because he had the lights on so the emergency guys could find him.  The ute was covered in gorse so you really could barely see him!

A few hours later once the sun came up friends got some photo’s.  If you look real close you can kinda make out the utes rear end.

The tow truck guys got this one.  Its video so I screen shot it.

IMG_8398.PNG

The only thing stopping further dropping is the tree and it was another 4m to the bottom.  Really lucky for that tree because he was about to start rolling.

He came out of this with just a bump on his head, some minor body aches and a bit of bruising from the seat belt.  Incredibly lucky.  Even the cops were surprised that he walked away from this.

The couldn’t retrieve it until 3am because the road needed to be closed and its a state highway.

This brings me to the blessings part.  For something that went so horribly wrong and amazing number of things went incredibly right.

  1. He was passing a truck when he hit the ice and spun across the road before tanking in down the hill.  There was no traffic coming towards him and so he hit no other vehicles
  2. He manage to miss a large tree at the top of the bank and instead went through the fence and down.  That tree would have hurt if he had got it because he was still doing 100kph at that time
  3. He slid down left side first so all damage was to the passenger side allowing him to be remarkable unscathed.
  4. I wasn’t there.  All the damage was to the passenger side including a large branch through the window.  I would not have walked away from this.  I would have been hit with the fire extinguisher when it came loose along with the shovel he was returning and the tree branch that came through the window. They were all on my seat when he came to rest.
  5. The tree that stopped the ute from going over and ending upside down in a creek.  If that had happened then he would have been in real trouble.
  6. People saw him go over the bank.  If they hadn’t no one would have found him and it turned out that he could not have climbed out on his own.  The ute was suspended well above ground still so he had to stand on the door and hoist himself up on to the back window then hoist himself again on to the rear fender and they sent him down a rope to climb up with.

And these are just the ones that I can think of right now.  He was so so so so very lucky.

Makes you wonder if there are such things as angels and if they were looking after my darling that day 🙂

Oh, if anyone finds a banana on the road along SH29 please let us know.  Apparently it flew out of his lunch box so is probably in a tree.

Ka Kete Ano xxx

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in craft, cross stitch, Knitting

Where Did That 3 Weeks Go?

Wow! Its been 3 weeks since my last crafty update.  Whoops! My bad.

Its been a little hectic here, but then when isn’t it.  All we seem to do is dash about getting older, and boy do I feel old lately.  My legs been taped up for the past 5 weeks.  I’m still not allowed to run and I have now been banned from climbing that big hill in my back yard.  There has been minimal improvement lately so if none has occurred over the next week my physio is bringing out the big guns and getting his boss to have a look.  He’s getting concerned that there might be something major going on that he’s missed seeing acupuncture, massage and rest have had no effect.  Here’s the thing, I’m not a sook and I push through pain so we really are starting to wonder what the heck I’ve done to myself.  Oh well.  At least its winter so I’m not missing out on the fun summer stuff 😀 Always a bright side right 😀

Crafty wise I have been right into my knitting.  Last night was the first night in a week that I haven’t knitted.  I’ve managed a few squared for the Patchwork blanket 🙂

IMG_8166

Garter Stitch Square

IMG_8187

Moss Zigzag Square

That one has a minor hiccup where I apparently zagged when I should have zigged but I didn’t notice till I had cast off.  On to the ‘re-do’ pile it will go 🙂

IMG_8193.JPG

Moss Stitch Square

I then put the needles down for a few days and did a little cross stitching on Warm My Heart.

Only 1,500 stitches achieved over the past 3 weeks thanks to knitting bug.

So then I went back to knitting and made myself a wee hat 🙂 Now, bear in mind that I have only achieved one completed knitting project so far which is my bunny from a few weeks ago.  I am super chuffed with this even though it’s probably more kid sized and I don’t suit hats.  Going to have another go in a few weeks and make one a smidge bigger so I can get my ponytail in it 😀

Then this past weekend I suddenly realised that I had yet to complete this months craft for next Saturday.  As it was too late to start something new I dug out an old mosaic kit that I started around 4 years ago and had a play with it.  Wouldn’t you know it, kit didn’t come with enough bits! So I go creative and stole some from Natalies that I bought at the same time.  As that was 4 years ago I doubt she will miss them 😀

IMG_8327.JPG

I kinda like this and now have a wee idea that I might like to make hearts for above all the doorways in the house as I have a wooden one that is already insitue that my cousin made 🙂 Might just add a little quirk to my world 😉

Then I went back to knitting and started on my first ever jersey. After a week I have nearly finished the back and I am rather proud of myself 🙂 I had to un-stitch a couple of times because of errors but it has been rather easy.  Mind your it’s just a stocking stitch so not super complicated but I am about halfway up the Raglan sleeve hole bits which has been a bit of a learn.

IMG_8328.JPG

Its a yoga jersey and will have a hood for which the instructions kind of scare me but I am determined lol 🙂

The wool is a joy to work with.  A Cashmere and Marino blend and the colour is a sort of dusty sea-foam.  I can’t wait to wear this but I am picking it will not be finished till next winter.  I am going to finish the back this week and them go on to my stripey blanket which is yodeling from the basket at me and has been neglected for too long.  I also need to get my second bunny both started and finished.  Anyone know where I could find an extra 4 – 5 hours each day hahaha 😉

Ka Kete Ano xx

 

Posted in Uncategorized

A Week Off And Some Sleep In’s

It’s currently the school holidays here and the arrival of my (step)daughters from Stratford.

As Stratford is 4.5 hours from between our homes, and the girls are 16 & 18 now, we don’t get to see them all that often.  Due to work commitments and other work related events, I have not managed to take time off when the girls are up in at least 5, probably longer, years.  Natalie likes to get home every holiday but Veronica usually only comes up once or twice if we are lucky each year.  This year I managed a whole 4 days with them, in a row even 😀 I had to work the Monday but I got the rest of the week off.

Tuesday was a crappy ‘catch up on the weekday stuff’ day and along with my darling husband we caught up on all the things that you can’t do on a weekend.  The door guy came round and measured for our new door.  Excessively way happier than we should be about this.  Because we live so near the beach in a coastal town our wooden front door has gradually died over the past few years.  All the wood that takes the brunt of the coastal blows has warped, bowed and dropped and now it groans like an 80-year-old getting up off the floor when you open it (no sneaking into our house at night) and you can see daylight through the panels from the hallway.  Obviously this is not an easy fix as we have a unusally sized door and it needs to be specially made.  Door guy came round for the measure and quote so hopefully we will have a lovely powder-coated white aluminium front door with no groans nor daylight very soon.

Also got the cat to the vets for WOF and had internet guy around to fix the mess that was our non-wifi ultra-fibre wi-fi that spent more time not working than it ever did working. This last bit resulted in 3 very happy girls who can now Runescape, YouTube and stream Anime in the sanctity of their bedrooms whenever they want without swearing and getting their grumpies on.

Darling husband was back at work on Weds so it was me and the girls.  The weather was utter shite as it often is at this time of year so we ran around the back of Papamoa until we finally found the worlds best, at least as far as the bay is concerned, Second-hand bookshop.  I lost the girls in there in the first 10 minutes.  We were there at least an hour.

There are books everywhere in here! You literally have to turn sideways to get down some parts of the aisle and I love the place! Nat and I are seriously going back again next time and pretty much every time after that 😀

After that we hit the supermarket and by then it was lunchtime so we headed home for pizza, movies and the fire for the afternoon. It was too miserable out to be of much fun and we all had new books 😀

The weather cleared a bit in the arvo so we went to the beach, me with my book 😉

Thursday saw darling husband again with the day off so we headed over to Rotorua for what was an even more horrible weather day than the previous one.  Plan A was dashed with the powers that be shutting the Zorb range so the girls couldn’t roll around in giant inflated clear plastic balls like people shaped hamsters.  That will have to become next times event.  We then came up with plan B and went in search of other touristy events to partake in.  We found ourselves at the Paradise Valley Zoo where the animals were also displeased about the weather.  It rained the whole time and was rather chilly but we had fun playing with the critters 🙂

From there we got caught in sudden snow and high tailed it too Carl’s Jr for lunch and coffee where I Facebooked them to turn the heating on because we were sitting in the restaurant blowing ‘smoke’ rings at each other and I couldn’t feel my feet Sooooooooooo coooooooooold.  The maze we then attempted to go to was also shut due to weather so we gave up and went home hahaha 🙂 The fire was lovely and we had hot veggie soup for dinner so all was well with the world.

Friday saw dearest husband back at work and me dashing the kids down to the bus at 7am for their journey home.  Bus was about 10 minutes late but we weren’t worried even though it was as cold as a polar bears proverbial.  That was, we weren’t worried until the bus driver pulled up and hopped out asking ‘Do you want the bad news first or the bad news first?’ and promptly informed us that weather had caused major road closures and unless we only wanted to go to Taupo we weren’t going anywhere.  So we piled back in the car and headed back to the warm. Mental note: next time check internet before rushing out the house dressed as Nanok of the North.

At this point we came to the rather slow realisation that the girls had come up during the worst winter storm in 16 years so we laughed (at least me and Nat did, Ron was in a sulk because she wanted to see her boyfriend) and drank coffee.

As Ron was now channelling her inner feral mongoose and about as much fun as a soggy toast Nat and I decided to head for the hills, literally, and went for a hike up the Mount.  Nat had never actually been up it and although it was cold and threatening rain we decided to seize the fear and do it anyway 🙂

You can’t tell by the photo but it was getting a bit spitty. 15 minutes later we were at the bottom and soaking wet so we made a pit stop into a cafe for hot chocolate and chai latte’s and very sympathetic coffee makers 🙂 We were not the first, nor the last, of the soggy mountain climbers for the day.

Arrival back at home for hot showers found our feral mongoose not terribly improved in temperament so once we were warm and dry we headed back out again and off to the local art gallery.  Nat loved the carvings and enjoyed herself 🙂 I love art so was in my element.

We then stopped at a cafe for lunch before heading home and chilling for the remainder of the day 🙂

That day is truly going to be one of my favourite memories.  Nat and I had a fantastic day hanging out and laughing and just enjoying.  We talked about assort’s and I have to say that our baby, our 16-year-old youngest, has grown to be a delightful young lady and an absolute joy to be with.

Roads opened and the heavens sung and they managed to get home Saturday morning 🙂

It was still bloody cold though

Ka Kete Ano xx

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Cast On, Bind Off

After all the frantic stitching to finish Tash & Kids I have neglected my knitting projects and have been feeling guilty for it.  How to counteract that? Getting knitting of course 😀

Now bear in mind that I am teaching myself to knit and as I really need to concentrate on anything that is more than a standard knit a line or purl a line, it’s rather slow going with frequent unravellings so my output is somewhat minimal compared to those who actually know what they are doing. This means that my output is not what others would achieve but I am ecstatic because its huge for me 😀 AND this was only a weekends work.

IMG_8150.JPG

First up we have a Reverse Stocking Stitch Stripe Square. A nice, easy little stitch that cost me no frustration or rude words although if you look closely you can see that I have accidentally added an extra line into a couple of rows.  I didn’t notice until well above them so at this stage they can stay there.  I may add it to the pile of re-do’s that I am accumulating for after I have stitched them all, but it’s not hugely noticeable so I may just call it ‘artistic license’ and leave it at that.

IMG_8152.JPG

Next we have Step Stitch Square which totally freaked me out and near caused me to wet myself when I saw the pattern but surprisingly I found it a doddle and really enjoyed the process 🙂

IMG_8155.JPG

Third up was the Stocking Stitch with Garter Stitch Stripe Square which I have to say is one of the ugliest things I have made for a while

IMG_8157.JPG

And last, but not least, we have a Basketweave Square which I am relieved to say, is not as ugly as the one above it.

All the knitting for the weekend went great with only a few minor hiccups so I am stocked to have made that much progress.  I do have to admit that it is mostly due to Dry July. Because I can’t have a wine I’m knitting lol

So that’s this weeks miniscule round-up.

Ka Kete Ano xx

 

Posted in Crafty Bitches Monthly Challenge

Crafty Bitches June 2017

Well that month rolled round fast.  I was caught on the hop and made my craft at lunchtime that day. The good news is that at least I prepared for the dinner 😉

Ana wins crafter of the month with this spectacular autumnal bowl

IMG_8109

IMG_8110

This bowl was freakin AMAZING and she is going to store it carefully for the her Canadian Thanksgiving that we are all attending in October 🙂

The Mama (after 6 months I still can’t remember her name #mybad) sent along her latest creation of a crochet pincushion.

IMG_8106

My mama Mel made a fabulous shower poof.  She then promptly left it behind so it now has pride of place hanging off the back of a dinning room chair.  Truth be told, its more to save it from the fat furry bastards that live with us or it would become their latest cat toy.

IMG_8113

Amy made it this month so she bought her WIP along too so that we could see it in person.  Because she knows she’s having a boy she has changed some of the colours to be more ‘male’ friendly.  She’s done a bloody good job of that also as you can’t tell that they aren’t original.

IMG_8112

Ricki has been awaiting very patiently for the arrival of her next project which finally arrived that day.  She bought it along so we could ooooooo and ahhhhhhhh with her when she opened it 🙂 Now this is going to take a few days to do 😀 :O

IMG_8115.JPG

Then there was little ole me and my last-minute ‘craft’ and I do use that term loosely.  It is not my finest work and a ‘friend’ recently thought it was a monkey with his penis out at first glance so I don’t think this was a win.

IMG_8105

Mel kept us updated with her progress on all her stitches throughout the month.

The country for the food was Egypt this month and I forgot to get all photo’s except the one I did well prior for the brining of my chicken.  It was all really good though and we are looking to next month when the country is Syria thanks to my darling brother who complained the whole night that I had selected a hard one and then promptly one upped me.  Who says sibling rivalry ends when you becomes adults hahaha.

Jamie and Ricki bought yum Koftas with a Tzatziki sauce.  Ana & Craig bought a fabulous Coscos side dish that Kayla promptly scoffed the leftovers off the next day while massively hung over (she has asked if you could make it for her again Ana).  Amy & Brett bought a stellar Moroccan Chicken dish.  I couldn’t make my mind up about what to make so I made 2 different types of chicken, Chicken Shawarma and Sumac Roast Chicken with Lemon & Garlic. Mel made a spectacular Baklava 😀

All up, everything was delicious!!

Ka Kete Ano xx

 

Posted in craft, Knitting

When You’re Busy Busy But Not Busy Crafting

We’ve been super busy in the Semmens household recently.  We’ve been out way more than we’ve been in, and when we have been in we’ve had visitors everywhere 🙂 This is a good thing! I introvert way too easily and too often so this has gotten me out of my comfort zone and made my husband happy. We’ve been for walks and runs and visits and had people over for dinner and drinks and games of pool and made stairs in the bush and . . .

I fear I haven’t picked up a needle in 2 weeks and chances are rather high that I won’t this week either lol We are out to dinner Friday night and have a party to go to Saturday night but who knows.  The weathers supposed to be bollocks so we will be in the house the rest of the time.  Plenty of crafting opportunities  then 🙂

That doesn’t mean that I have done nothing, just that I haven’t done a lot.  I’ve managed to get 2 squares done for my patchwork blanket!

IMG_8062

Double Moss Stitch Square

This one came together quite nicely 🙂 Knitted up in an evening.  No restarts and no dramas.

IMG_8064

Checkerboard Square

I hate this one! and please don’t look at it closely.  It was re-started 4 F@#$%^G times!!!! and I should have restarted it again cept I’m pretty sure they would have put me in one of those jackets that let you hug yourself in one of those rooms with the squishy walls if I did.  I have no idea why this one had a hate on for me because I have certainly done more complicated works but I just couldn’t get it to work.  It took me a week to get 50 rows done which the most ridiculous thing ever! GRRRRRRR!

One day I will attempt to redo this square . . . one day before I sew the blanket together . . . today is not that day.

Not only but also I made this.  It’s a bit shit, somebody described it as ‘looks like a monkeys penis, and looks way better from a distance (So I made a smaller picture) but, hey, you live you learn 🙂

IMG_8105

Finally to round things up, this isn’t crafty but I love the way the light is reflecting so I’m putting it in here to end the month with 😉

IMG_8102.JPG

So to sum it all up, I have been as lazy af lately but what the heck.  Tomorrow is another day . . . oh that’s right, its July even and this year I am once again going sober for the month to raise money for people living with cancer 🙂 The money raised through this campaign goes towards upgrades in the chemo centres as well as other areas.  It pays for the free wifi and the non-government-issue comfy chairs that the patients can be in for several hours at a time, books and magazines, morning and afternoon teas etc. and that’s only the beginning.  Such a worthy cause that is often overlooked by the other fundraising drives that you see and, trust me, one that my liver thanks me for every time that I do this.  So far over the 3 years I have participated I have raised around $600 myself and look forward to contributing more again this year.  Please feel free to sponsor my Dry July – http://www.dryjuly.co.nz/users/toni-semmens

Ka kete ano xx

 

 

Posted in craft, cross stitch, Knitting

Love A Good Craft Store Sale

This week went a little better than the past couple regarding pretty much everything.  Last Monday was a bank holiday here in little ole NZ and it was miserable as far as the weather was concerned.  My darling husband ended up downstairs for the afternoon with our neighbour playing pool and calling each other rude names.  This left me unchaperoned upstairs with the movie channel, fire, furry fat friends and my cross stitch.  That combined with yesterdays effort has resulted in some good progress on Warm My Heart and a page finish 🙂

Wednesday night saw me wander downstairs with my knitting while my husband was watching the Lions test.  I was hoping to knit up a bobble square for the patchwork blanket but I didn’t get that far along before I needed to find my bed.  The next night saw 2 more rows before unravelling the whole thing and starting again.  2 rows of bobbles done and I spot a mistake further back that means another total unravel so I threw it in the corner for the night.  Friday night saw 2 rows of bobbles and I ran out of puff so it was bedtime. Saturday I spotted a mistake 2 rows back that meant a minor unravel.  Sunday saw to more minor unravels and FINALLY a completed square.  I now officially hate bobble squares!

IMG_8020

There are still way to many mistakes in that square but I just needed to accept this and walk away.

Friday I checked our bank account and got a lovely surprise of an unexpected dividend payout.  Rather than be completely practical and pay bills then put the rest in savings I took myself off to the craft store to kit up an idea that I have had scratching at my brain for the past few weeks.

I have a Storykeep Selina Fenech cross stitch chart that I think might make a pretty cool floor rug.

I must have looked a little mad running around the knitting section at Spotlight.  I got the skeins of DMC that the chart called for and ran around colour matching with balls of wool.  This lead to loads of talking to myself and running around in circles pushing my basket with my toes as my hands were full of chart, skeins and wooly balls.  It took forever but I think I am happy with the choices.

IMG_8015.JPG

I have no idea how many ‘stitches’ I am going to get per ball of wool so went with 1000 per ball and am hoping for the best.

I love that the rug canvas comes in 10 x 10 squares.  This is going to make life so much easier with the ‘stitch’ counting.

Of course I then couldn’t wait and just had to have a go 😀

BGTY8329

Its going to be interesting as the balls are all different textures.  I have either made a huge error in judgement or something that is going to be texturely sumptuous 😀 Only time will tell.

Its going to end up 0.5 x 2 metres in size so it may take me a week or 2 😉

Ka Kete Ano xx

 

Posted in craft, cross stitch

Where Does The Time Go

We are flat-out at work, right smack bang in the middle of one of the busiest seasons I have seen. That’s great for business but not so great for crafty achievements.  There has been some progress but not nearly as much as I would have liked to get done.

I finished my mat 😀 This was a bit of a mad panic as it was my monthly crafting achievement and it nearly came down to the wire.  If I hadn’t gotten that tummy bug a couple of weeks ago I am pretty sure it would have been my first month without a craft finish.

As you can tell, I had a wee helper in my endeavours.  He accidentally got poked a couple of times with the hooky thing but it didn’t seem to phase him.

We call it the ugly rug.

It’s definitely not the prettiest thing that I have ever achieved but it has given me a fantastic idea for another one.  I just need to get a long bit of matting and some wool and I will be off 😀

After the tummy bug finished its 3 day vacation in my body and I could finally do something that required thinking again I managed to get a bit further along on my cross stitch, although this has not been of epic proportions.  Any progress is good progress right 🙂

And that’s about it really.  I did purchase a couple of new patterns as they had a 50% off flash sale over at Heaven & Earth Designs.

The first one, Frozen, will be for my daughter.  As I have already done one for her this is not going to be high on my priority list and I have told her she may get it by the time she is 50 if she’s lucky.

The second, Lest We Forget, I may do in diamond painting.  The long-term goal for this one is to get it framed up with my Grandfathers and Great Grandfathers war medals.

The third, Mint & Roses, I just thought was really cute 😀

So that’s pretty much me for this week.

Ka Kete Ano xxx

 

Posted in Crafty Bitches Monthly Challenge

Crafty Bitches May 2017

Well April turned into a bit a fizzer.  Half the team was on vacation in Venice and the other half was off babysitting the first couples chickens and chihuahua’s.  That along with great flooding across the nation cause the Crafty Bitches to pretend we didn’t have an April.

The May one went much better

We have decided due to this ‘show and tell’ event turning into a drinking session every time that it would be better for all if we make it a pot luck dinner.  This was an excellent idea and nobody had to sneak through a drive through on the way home or try to not burn the house down making toasted sandwiches at 10.30 at night.

The crafts were an interesting variety once again. Ana repurposed some toilet rolls into something very un-toilet rolly and fabulous.

IMG_7968.JPG

I don’t know about y’all but I’m impressed 🙂

Ana’s mother-in-law presented her knitted bed socks, a pair of slippers and a blanket.  Very busy with the needles she has been.  She tells us that the socks and slippers are all ‘one size fits all’ and she sells the blankets for $60 NZD if anyone is keen.

Mel revisited her childhood and make bookmark using lamination (They used to use clear plastics over greeting cards), hole punches and crochet.  Very cool way of repurposing stuff.

IMG_7973

Our lovely Ricki finished her long term quilting and stitching project.  The stitching on this beautiful.  It had a minor wardrobe malfunction in that it had a pocket which is now on the inside against the padding.  If she hadn’t told us we would never have known.

Then there was me 🙂 I bought my bunny from last month because I was proud of him even if his arms are on upside down.  I also bought my finished ugly mat which was this months project 🙂

Amy and Other Mel both phoned in theirs this month.  Amy continued her cross stitch and Other Mel continued with her rotation.

18814237_10155080098990081_4290787796262038167_n.jpg
Amy

Other Mel

Because the dinner idea was a success we are going to make it regular and are giving it a twist.  We are going to cook our way around the world and each meeting will have a different country for the dinner theme.  June will be Egypt 🙂  See you then xxx

Posted in Life

Life

My cousins son is struggling right now and I have just written him a letter.  I think its somehting I want to share.

Hi honey

I’ve been talking to your mum and she tells me that you have been struggling a lot lately.  I know it sounds trite but sometimes life is a little like that.  We all have days/weeks where it feels like there’s no point but please don’t think that this is all there is. Every person, every being on this planet has worth.  You are young, you haven’t found your path yet but trust me, it’s out there and when you find it everything will change.

That doesn’t mean that there won’t be bad days. It just means that there will be way more good days than bad.

Let me tell you a little story.  Bear with me, it’s going to be a little wordy, and it’s going to be brutally honest, and it’s probably going to say some things that you won’t want to hear or won’t make sense.

21 years ago my brother took his own life.

The day he did that he broke something inside me and all the rest of my family that will never be repaired.

The family immediately fractured.  He had 2 daughters, one who I have never met.  The other came back into my life this year.  They never got to know him.  They barely even know what he looked like.  Their mother removed all traces of him from her world.  They refer to him as Peter.  He was never Peter.  He was Pete and he was dad.

Do I still cry for him?  You betcha I do.  Even after 21 years it just takes a song on the radio and I am back to that day.  I must look like a mad lady, driving down the road with tears streaming down my face.

Do I still go to ring him every time something happens?  No I don’t.  That finally stopped happening about 10 years ago.  Nowa days I just look up and ask out loud if he saw that.  You see, even after all this time I still want to share the stuff that makes up my world with him.  That has never gone away and it still hurts that I can’t.

You see XXXX that boy took a part of me with him that is never coming back.  When he ended his life he told me that my love for him wasn’t enough and since that day I have never trusted that it will ever be.  I no longer have a best friend, or even really friends.  I tend to keep to myself outside of work and my immediate family.  I consider a successful weekend to be one where I have managed to not leave the house.  Very few people know terribly much about me.  I smile a lot and I talk a lot and because of that people think I share a lot but most people have absolutely no idea what’s going on in my world at all.  I’m a bit of a magician like that haha

I have huge anxiety because I am always worried about letting everyone down.  Sometimes this leads to panic attacks.  I had to leave a wedding in a hurry just a couple of months ago because I freaked out.

There is loads more but those are pretty much the high lights.  Right now I am going to beg you not to do this to your family.  Not to do this to your sisters.  Don’t let them live with the pain and heartache that I have lived the majority of my life with.  It doesn’t go away for them, they don’t get over it.

Now we are going to turn this around and move away from the sad.

Life is good honey, and it’s a better world with you in it.  Sometimes we forget that people love us while we are hurting and I promise you, you are loved.

The teen’s are the worst of it.  Actually they suck great assmonkey’s.  I wouldn’t go back to that time of my life if you paid me.  Your body and you brain haven’t stopped developing yet and all the hormone crap is racing around in there not doing its job properly, or over doing it often, leading to big highs and lows and chemical freak outs.  That’s why certain drugs can help you feel better and sometimes, if it’s not the right one or combination, can make you feel worse.  If it wasn’t an internal thing then they wouldn’t work at all.  All this going on inside you can make you do, think and act in ways that aren’t you.  As I have always told my kids, this is not an excuse but a reality.  What you do with it from there is your responsibility and choice.

You are nearly through this part of your life.  Pretty soon all the internal stuff is going to start settling down.  Whatever triggers that have caused this crash are still going to be there, but they are going to find their place and become something that happened that shaped you into who you are, not the thing that defines you.  Nobody gets through life without bad shit happening, it’s what we do next that counts.

Sometimes we have trouble with the bit that comes next. It’s ok to get help, and don’t think you have to accept the first doctor/therapist that you go to.  They are like hair dressers and tattooists.  You have to find one that fits you. If you don’t like them or they annoy you then it’s not going to work.  Ask to try a different person.  This pretty much works for everything you do in life . . . except social welfare.  There you just have to deal with the asshat they assign you.

One day this will all be behind you and you will be stronger for it PLUS because of what you have been through you will have great empathy for others when they are struggling.  This is a good thing.  People without empathy are arseholes.

Sooooooo after many many words what I am trying to say is this.  I love you.  Your mum and your dad love you. Your sisters love you and so so so many other people love you.  Hang in there kid because it will get better.

In the little bag is a bracelet of the manly leather kind.  It’s a real one not some cheap piece of crap from a market or $2 shop.  It’s for you.  I want you to put it on and wear it so that every time you look down you know that I am right here if you need me.  I am only ever a phone call away.

I love you little fella

Aunty Toni xxx