Friday, February 17, 2012

Gardening delights

I am so excited. I finally have decent things growing in my garden and some of them I have grown from seed! I still need to get a new memory card for my camera, so no pictures but currently I have:

- Strawberries
- Sage
- Aloe vera
- Lettuce
- Carrots
- Kumara

I have seeds to plant more items and plan to tomorrow. I have been getting areas ready and planning out how I want to do it in my yard. Soon my big palm tree in this picture will be chopped down thanks to my amazing brother in law.



(It's bigger than that now, this pic os over 12 months old)
It has been pushing on the fence and has also decided to have a baby next to it, plus the roots go along all the back fence, making it hard to plant anything.

My plan is to have at least 4 garden beds, but to make no dig gardens along the back or down the side and add some fruit trees. I was thinking where you can see the metal fence at the front of the picture putting in some passionfruit or other fruiting vine to grow over that fence.

We have such a large backyard but don't really use the space well.

My next step is also chickens. I need to find or build a coop but I already know where to get my chooks so once it is ready I can get them.

I am trying to accept I will be here for longer than I would like and as such am growing more and making the house a home.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Christmas Advent Calendar - Tutorial

This year I finally got around to making our Christmas Advent Calendar. It has been on my to do list for about 4 years. Growing up we had one with pockets in it. Each pocket had a lolly each and a little something we had to do such as smile at 5 people that day, sing a Christmas carol or help 3 people, that sort of thing. I wanted the same for my family.

I originally planned on doing it all in Christmas colours but when I pulled that fabric out, other fabric I liked more fell out, so I completely changed my plans.

This is the finished look:


To start with I took Some white fabric and folded it in half. I then got green drill fabric and cut out 3 matching triangles. (Sorry I didn't measure anything, just cut and went for it).

I laid the triangles ont he fabric so it looked like a Christmas tree, then pinned and sewed them down to one side of the white fabric. It was not folded in half or anything at this point.
I also cut a length of brown felt and sewed it on for the trunk.

Next I added the pockets which consisted of squares of bright fabric (approx 2inch y 2 inch) and some felt shapes in different colours cut out to be baubles, plue 1 star on top. In total I had 25 pockets.


I placed all the pockets to see how I wanted them to sit on the tree before sewing any down. With the coloured square pockets I used my hot glue gun to stick on the letters to "Merry Christmas" which I had cut out in felt.


Once everything was placed and sewn on I hand stitched the numbers onto the pockets like so:


This was so each day in December we would know which pocket to select. I also added a few embellishments like bells as you can see above.

Then I folded the white fabric in half again, covering the Christmas tree so it was inside out and sewed around, leaving a small hole to turn the whole thing back in the right way. I stitched up that hole, added a ribbon and pole to the top so I could hang it and that was it. 


I love it. It is so bright and cheery. We changed our Christmas tree from red and gold to blue and silver this year so this advent calendar suits it so much better than the traditional fabric I had originally chosen.