Friday, April 09, 2010

Flaunting on a Friday!

I hope you are sitting down.... I am actually flaunting on a Friday! Both Steven and I have some things to show off....

Steven recently made me this lovely birds eye Huon Pine pen. It was a replacement for one he made me about 6 years ago that went missing at some stage. It is a beautifully designed pen, being a little wider than some of the other pen styles available and a joy to use.

We brought back some Huon pine from Tassie (as you do!) and he has now made us these salt and pepper grinders....
Neither of us like the usual design, so he designed these for us.
The photo doesn't do justice to them as it is difficult for you to see the wood grain.
He has inserted them with glass tubing so the salt and pepper don't take on the huon pine aroma.
He is trying to work out whether he should make any more - what do you think?
Your feedback on the design choice would be very helpful.

I was very late in completing the winter mini quilt swap coordinated by Michelle Foster at Quilting Gallery
Here is the completed quilt - a bit larger thatn set, but I thought she could use it as a table topper.

The friendship stars are actually made of a glittery fabric - the intention was to illustrate the icy night skies we both have, rather than snow, as well as friendships formed through swaps like this one. I used some of my handpainted fabric for the sky and the quilting is supposed to represent the wind - a common part of winter, I think!
Lisa, my recipient, has been very patient, so I have made a little extra gift for her.....

yes, I know, yet another bag.... but they are so lovely.
By the way, I STILL haven't made one for myself!
Maybe next holidays?!

Monday, April 05, 2010

Heaven on Earth Part 2

Sorry for the delay in posting the second part of our fabulous Tassie trip - work insists in taking over my life and preventing me from doing what I'd love to do! Now... for the rest of the trip;
Strahan harbour is very pretty and tranquil - it looks almost exactly as we remember from our last trip 26 years ago. We had booked a seaplane flight to get a closer look at the wilderness surrounding Strahan, as this is one of the most stunning places you can visit, in our opinion.

Four of us settled in to the small seaplane for an hour long flight..... the weather was perfect, bright, sunny and very calm. We couldn't have asked for a more ideal day!
The landing on the Gordon river was exhilerating.... swooping down to land on the water while being surrounded by dense bush kept us on the edge of our seats! After a very safe landing, we walked along the jetty to enjoy the secluded beauty of St John Falls....
The brown tinge to the water is the tannins that leach from the  trees. It was very therapeutic to stand quietly and enjoy the tumbling water and crisp, clean air.
On returning to the plane, we headed back to Strahan via the Kelly Basin and the King River.

We are so lucky to live in this beautiful country - there is such a massive range of environments and terrain.... and to think, all this area could have been lost forever if the dams proposed in the early '80's had been built!

After another lovely evening in our stunning accomodation, we headed for Stanley on the north west tip of Tasmania. It is an interesting town to wander around because it contains many beautiful and historical buildings.

The photo above of the Van Diemans Land Company Store, built in 1843. Below are photos of the convict barracks, used from about 1836. Approximately 23 convicts were housed in this tiny structure....the massive rocks it was made out of now litter the area around what is left of the building.
Before I leave this installment, I have to show you one of the crops grown in several parts of Tasmania.....
Does this help explain why Tasmanians are such relaxed and friendly people??
The other surprising element to the first poppy photo is the sprinklers being used - we were so used to drought conditions that it took us by surprise to see the amount of crop watering taking place.

My last Tassie post will be highlighting a stunning place to stay that would also be perfect as a retreat venue for a small group of friends....