Wednesday, 31 August 2011

My niece is a scrapbooker to!

My lovely niece has just joined Blogger land. Laura is a budding scrapbooker. Take a moment and pop by her blog and check out the album she has created. You can find her here at ... Pickles scrap

Wednesday, 24 August 2011


These past two days I've been pruning...with my chain saw!!....

 By the end of yesterday the trailor was covered over, (photo below) but now the whole drive way is pretty much taken over by off-cuts!

  My herb garden is springing into life again, check out my lives!!

Monday, 22 August 2011

Seven Years today....

This time seven years ago, I was sitting in ICU wondering what the next minute was going to throw at us.

Today is the anniversary of the day Andrew broke his neck, and the anniversary of the day that really did change our whole way of life.

This post is  a 'wind back' to that time..I have a book full of newspaper and  similar articles that were collected during this time, below are just some of them.... (if you wish to read any of the articles just click on them to make them larger).

This photo was taken not long after our move from Christchurch's Intensive Care Unit to Burwood Spinal Hospital.

I took these photos as Andrew was being 'sat -up' for the first time since his injury. Sitting up is not as easy as you may think it would be after a long period of lying down.

Andrew is still attached to his breathing machine at this time. He was very lucky to eventually learn to breathe on his own again, thank goodness, because I got very tired carting this machine with us when ever we made an escape from the hospital...when the doctors and nurses were looking the other way!

Lunch time never used to be like this!

Here is Andrew taking a few worrying minutes off the ventilator.Some people at this level of injury never get off these machines...we were lucky!

...and even luckier to have the amazing support of our local community behind us. People are good!!!!

Andrew's lungs collapsed not long after arriving at Burwood, so here he is being stabilised before being carted back to ICU. One of Andrews lungs never recovered from this collapse, so breathing is always going to be laboured to some extent. And for this same reason he has to be carefull to try not to pick up colds and flues.

Two months on and the wonderful folk back home are still rallying around for us!

...mean while I seem to be doing alot of 'sitting around'

...Looking back I really should have made the most of sitting around, because I had no idea at this time just how busy my life was going to get, or just how much worry and stress was in store.

...And still more support....Incredible!!....

Andrew had the brightest wall in the Spinal ward, people used to pop in just for a peek at his walls.

 Here's my dad arrived for a visit. Mum and dad were kept busy at home looking after our Children. We could have moved them to Burwood for a while, but it made more sense for them to carry on with the life they knew, rather than up-rooting them at this time.

We were never short of visitors.

...or support....

 Burwood quickly become home and we slid into daily routines. Andrew spent his nights at the hospital and I lived in a little unit on the hospital grounds. We  made some very  lovely friends, who had sad stories of their own to deal with. 

We met and befriended some wonderful people in the hospital as well. The Doctors, nurses, and other patients were all cheerful, something that amazed me in our early days here.

In this photo Andrew is playing blow-darts with Anaru, with the help of nurse Lyn.
The boys worked out this challenge where by the looser had to have their finger nails polished...Andrew lost and went around with red nail polish on for quite some time!!

Eventually is become lovely to escape the confines of the hospital, even if it was just to sit outside in the garden!

Some where along the way the sitting around ended and the hard work begun. There was plenty I had to learn before we had any chance of being able to think about leaving this safe place and heading back home to carry on with our life.


 Who would ever have thought that being paralysed was anything other than just not being able to walk...its sooo much more complex than that!

I remember well the day that 'Superman' died. Christoper Reeve's death brought  a somber day to the Spinal Unit. This man had been an amazing advocate for spinal injured people everywhere.

School holidays were great. It was kind of squashed in my little unit but wonderful to have the children back with us. And once Andrew was able to cope with being up in a wheel chair for a few hours we would all leave the hospital and spend time being a family again over at my little home on the hospital grounds.

 A real high for us, at this time, come when Aimee was chosen to be part of the rep soccer team who would go to the UK. day we went home, only our house was too little for all of the equipment that now had to accompany Andrew. So we all moved to Oamaru for a year. Our two oldest  children were at boarding School in Oamaru by this time anyway and our wonderful friends Robyn and Graeme transported Camden back and forth to Duntroon School each day for us.

...Our home now looks like this..although usually we do not have the snow !!

And from time to time, when Andrew's health goes belly-up we trip back to Burwood. In a strange way it kind of feels like 'going home'.

Thanks to everyone of you who joined us in some way, big, or small on our journey.
We could not wish to live in a more wonderful community!!

For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin--real life. But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.-- Alfred D. Souz

Hi there, still very little to report on the craft front I'm afraid...but I have just up-dated the Paper Chase Blog so check it out here. Also find us on Facebook  we would love to hear your creative ideas. Today we are talking 'fussy cutting', pop in and share your favorite fussy cutting techniques or ideas with the rest of us!

I am sad to say That Birds of a Feather Craft Together has come to a halt. I would like to say a HUGE thank you to my dear crafty friend Carol for her awesome inspiration and wonderful creativeness, she was the brains behind this blog and I have enjoyed working along side her. Thank you to the ladies who have kept us going by partaking in our challenges and sketches, you are all an inspiration to us. I love seeing your works of art and will still be popping by your blogs regularly!

Now I'm going out into the garden to prune some roses...not very exciting I know, but a job I keep putting off, and as the sun is shining I thought it was high time I made an effort.

Before I head out amongst the thorns I just thought I'd shear this with you, I pinched it from my friends face book status...

The biggest obstacle to any kind of transformation is the voice that tells you it's impossible" Geneen Roth
Interesting exercise when you want to achieve something big....

who's voice is it telling you in your head that you can't?
where have you heard it before ?
who said it and when?
Why do we allow ourselves to keep living by it?
Ask yourself this when you are feeling like giving up, or feel like something is impossible......

...nothing is impossible, not really!!                 Have a great day everyone

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Lost and Found

Things are very slow on the craft front at my house. I am tiring to get my illustrations finished for a children's book that has been written by a friend. The witch has given me some grief, but is almost complete at last.
This morning I went on a Dog hunt. Eldest son lost two of his dogs last night and they were still missing this morning. However just after I phoned dog control this morning I received a phone call from a farm, a little way from here. This farmer and his wife had spotted two dogs that they thought might belong to Cody. So I jumped into the van and after driving for quite a while up a farm road, still coated in plenty of snow I spotted the 'terrable two'. They both looked pleased to see me and quickly tucked up in the van to catch some well needed zzzzz's on the way home. They have both been fed and are now tucked up fast asleep in their kennels.

Thought today I'd share a favorite song ,(see below)  I love Jame's Blunt music, and this song is one of my favorites. His performance here is just gorgeous, he puts so much feeling into this one!

James Blunt - If Time Is All I Have (Live at 1 Mayfair)

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Fire and Snow

Today has been a little on the chilly side, but tonight is going to be alot on the chilly side! Just a short while ago I snapped this photo out of the upstairs window, but by the time I grabbed my camera and memory card and got outside  this spot looked like .....

 ...this! the snow is falling thick and fast still, so I guess our trip to Timaru tomorrow will not be happening now. I dont think my Tui has seen snow before!!

The snow looks so nice doesn't it, but I feel sorry for the lambs and calves about to born in this

 Aimee was on her way home from Dunedin, an hour ago, but rung to say she was stuck in the snow, and had not even made it as far as the Motorway!! Camden and Abby have headed to Kakanui for the night as its going to be impossible for them to make it back to Dunedin. So at this stage they plan on coming back here to Duntroon tomorrow, and weather pending maybe heading back to Dunedin tomorrow afternoon, although I'm picking they will be staying here for another night or two by the looks of things!

 AND...thank goodness I did cut down those dead trees yesterday because our wood supply is dwindling!

 This afternoon Camden had a Fire call out, and I managed to grab a couple of snaps of him (in uniform) between the fire and the fire station! Tui is checking him out!

Now, its back to the fire and some hot soup.

Stay cosy out there!!

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Blue Day

The world is round and
the place which may seem
like the end may also be only the beginning.
Ivy Baker Priest

...okay, so today I'm having one of those 'blue' kind of days, might have something to do with lack of sleep, or maybe I need a holiday. Anyway, the only thing to do, when your feeling blue is to ...cut down a tree , or two, that was what I did anyway.
We had a couple of dead tress in our garden so I went out to have a clean-up, and what a nice surprise I got when eldest son turned up to help...

 Cody no sooner started when his chain saw run out of petrol, so he left again!!

 ...but youngest son come to the rescue when the chain come off my saw, and after fixing it he test drove it for me.

 And Andrew come to soak up a little of the sun and 'over see' progress.

Oh dear...yes I am looking like I'm in need of loads of beauty sleep...and a holiday me thinks!!

 Tomorrow we are supposed to be in for snow, but Jack Frost is well and truly tucked in for the night here at our house.

Hope you are all having a wonderful weekend.

My Favorite Musuc

Download this mp3 from

My Scrapping

Here is my finished latest painting

Here is my finished latest painting
This one is a hit with all the males who have seen it. I must say that I did not really enjoy painting a truck and it will be a one off for sure! Uncle David is now the owner of this one. Next project on thepainting scene is going to be a fisherman- for my Uncle Graeme who is wanting me to paint him something. Really need to get onto this one!

Finished at last- I think

Finished at last- I think
At last I think I have pretty much finished this painting for my uncle. Do hope he likes it.

My waterlillies

My waterlillies
one of my recent paintings

Naked Lady

Naked Lady
One of my last years paintings

Aimee and Bob

Aimee and Bob
A painting I did a while back for my daughter

Click on our house to see a little of where we live.

Thank you

Just want to say thankyou to those of you who have been kind enough to take the time to leave a comment or sign my guest book. Always get a buzz out of knowing people have been here for a wee look! THANK YOU!!

Check out my talented nephew Tony...he's the cool dude singing!