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January 10, 2019
2019 ideas from Susan P Blog

I actually think this is the first time I write ‘2019’ anywhere, and it is already the 10th of January! Yes, it is here. It arrived quietly in our house where everyone went to bed around 10 ish. I was awake at midnight to send messages to my children spread all over the world, and to family in South Africa

The year started with us giving the lounge and computer room a good clean. We washed the carpets, washed windows, polished everything, the new curtains (which I bought early in 2018) went up. Rubbish into the rubbish bags. It looks ...

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December 28, 2018
44 years later from Susan P Blog

I graduated from High School in 1974. After leaving I went to uni with two friends – they were high school sweethearts and marry soon after completing their degrees at uni. We remained in contact for quite a few years, ours husbands played golf together, we had our babies together, we did cake decorating classes together while the husbands babysat

But, eventually, we moved in different directions and quite far from each other and contacted  each other less and less. Yes, of course we are FB ‘friends’

Another friend from high school made contact a while ago and said they were ...

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December 23, 2018
2018 from Susan P Blog

It feels impossible, but it is true, the end of 2018 is here.  My plans for 2018 were:

  • Have a market stall at least once. Sell dolls clothes – done. Hated it. Sold nearly nothing. Not happening again
  • Weekly cleaning plan so that I don’t have to go in overdrive during weekends and clean like crazy. Do it ‘gently’ – worked out, more or less. But easily tempted by my sewing machines. Will try to do better in 2019
  • Finish the few sewing things that is half-done, or so close to being finished – done. Have a couple of ‘new’ sewing things ...

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December 18, 2018
Ready! from Susan P Blog

Some quick sewing before Christmas, but now I can say I am ready for the Hardanger SAL in 2019 </p>
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December 15, 2018
Love travelling, love needlework…….. from Susan P Blog

For someone who enjoys travelling, as well as needlework, my youngest gave me the best early Christmas present – a leather passport cover and a luggage tag. But both needs to be cross-stitched. For the luggage tag I cross-stitched my initials. For the passport cover you add crosses to the places you’ve visited! And add more as you travel more

I’ve done the luggage tag. The passport cover will make a bit longer as I have been travelling quite a bit over the years, there are quite a few crosses to add already </p>
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December 10, 2018
Crazy November from Susan P Blog

We had a lovely weekend with our two boys. These days, with the kids living all over the world, it seems impossible to get all three together at the same time. It feels like a bonus when we can spend time with at least two at a time. We rented a house for the weekend and just all relaxed and talked. I am so glad we managed it before Christmas

November has been good for needlework. I managed to finish a few dresses, as well as make a set for a work colleague of my son. She has a little ...

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November 16, 2018
PJs and pillows from Susan P Blog

For a long time I wanted to make smocked pyjamas and I found the perfect soft fabric the other day. It is pretty and delicate and I love how it turned out – French seams and all. I also made a scalloped hem as I now have a machine which have all these fancy stitches

Of course, I had to make a Reading Pillow to go with the pyjama set


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November 6, 2018
Reading pillow from Susan P Blog

I don’t know who thought of making a reading pillow first, but I love the idea and wish they were around when my children were young. There is even a Reading Pillow FB group </p>
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November 2, 2018
Janome Skyline S3 from Susan P Blog

I picked up my new sewing machine on Thursday. It was very exciting when the quilt shop dealer called me Thursday afternoon to tell me the machine has arrived, instead of Friday as expected

Brought the new baby home and played with it a little bit, trying out different stitches. Of course there is no fun in playing on a piece of fabric, so Friday I made a dress </p>
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October 28, 2018
Time to upgrade from Susan P Blog

About 5 years ago my 35 year old Singer Sewing Machine just wanted to retire. I couldn’t get the tension sorted, it started sewing like something with hiccups. At that stage I couldn’t afford much more than the cheapest machine on the market and I bought a little  cheap Singer. All plastic, and the guy who sold it to me tried to encourage me to buy at least the next model up, but I couldn’t afford it.

I have made many smocked dresses with that little cheapie, I even made quite a few quilts and bags and ...

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October 23, 2018
Fatigue and lots of nothing from Susan P Blog

Fatigue has been a problem for a few years now, but it has been getting better. I am not sure what triggered it this time as I am very careful and listen to my body. So I am taking things very slow this week and sitting around a lot.

I received a photo of the two little girls wearing the dresses I completed last week. They are very happy with their dresses


I have also now completed three rows of the Splendid Sampler 2 quilt. I love it

The last weekend was a long weekend, with Labour Day on Monday ...

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October 19, 2018
Time is flying from Susan P Blog

I cannot believe it is nearly Christmas again. I can’t believe I have been back home after my trip! Time is flying and it is time to take stock in my sewing room. Unfinished and forgotten projects must be taken out of their hiding places and I need to list and plan and get it all done – I’ll do this next week and also tidy the sewing room a bit

I have been quite busy with needlework the past few weeks. I made a little dress that I smocked in July, but never made it. The whole front ...

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October 2, 2018
You know you are back in New Zealand when………. from Susan P Blog

I have been back in New Zealand for a few days now. It was a bit of a struggle with jet lag, but all good now

After arriving in Auckland, from Vancouver, I managed to get an immediate flight to Christchurch, instead of having to wait for 6 hours for my booked flight. The lady at the luggage drop-off counter was wonderful and made a huge effort to change my flight. Without asking me for a cent, I might say

Of course this meant I was arriving in Christchurch just after 8am, instead of 1pm as planned. We live nearly ...

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What a holiday! from Susan P Blog

I am back home again after millions of plane rides and taxis. What a holiday! It was ‘all rush’ from the moment I met my son at Hong Kong airport, until I set foot in Canada. I had a wonderful, peaceful time with my daughter, her partner and 3 fur babies. We slept in, ate chocolate, binge-watched Downton Abbey. I sorted her sewing machine out for her, made them aprons and cushions We went axe-throwing – true, we did! And it was wonderful </p>
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September 30, 2018
The flight from hell from Susan P Blog

After a lovely time travelling with my youngest son it was time to say goodbye and head off to Canada to visit my daughter. Because my flights are almost all the time booked on very short notice I have to fly funny routes to destinations. This was not an exception. The best flight for me was NY (La Guardia airport) to Chicago to Calgary with United Airways

First of all the taxi driver dropped me off at the wrong terminal and those of you who are familiar with La Guardia – not a good start at all!!!!! Luckily I gave up ...

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New York from Susan P Blog

After returning to Hong Kong, from South Korea, we couldn’t go anywhere as my son was on standby and could be called in at any time when another pilot calls in sick. The plan was that if he was called to fly to some exciting city I’ll go with him, otherwise just wait in HK for him to return. And what happens? He receives the call – off to New York the next day! I packed all my stuff as it mad sense to fly to Canada when he flies back to Hong Kong

What a time we had ...

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September 21, 2018
Next stop? South Korea! from Susan P Blog

After a lovely time in Japan we decided to take off for South Korea, as we haven’t been there before. We nearly weren’t allowed to go as we kind of forgot to buy return tickets. We explained that we didn’t really have a plan of action and didn’t know how long we were going to stay they allowed us to check in for Busan, South Korea.

What a great country South Korea is. And not a lot of tourists yet. We ate and walked! We experienced the best Korean barbecues. But the highlight for me was ...

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Kyoto and Osaka from Susan P Blog

Our next city in Japan was Kyoto. Again we stayed in the capsule hotel – in luxury this time as my son booked us the upgraded rooms with projectors. You can watch  movies with it projected against the closed door/screen. After checking in the projectors were immediately tested

In Kyoto I tried eel for the first time. It was actually delicious. We also tried some herb which immediately made my tongue numb. Maybe I added too much

We visited a temple where you walk through an entry way of orange painted bamboo. It was beautiful

We also visited the bamboo ...

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August 14, 2018
Travelling – Hong Kong, Tokyo from Susan P Blog

Over a week ago we made the trip from home to Christchurch, where I caught a plane and travelled to Sydney.


I was going to spend a night in Sydney before flying to Hong Kong but decided to try to get onto the plane which was leaving for HK a few hours after arriving in Sydney – as I was on stand by for that one too. It took a lot of rushing but I made it just on time. Business Class was full, but luckily the Cathay Pacific staff found me a seat in Premium Economy, which meant a bit ...

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July 31, 2018
Sewing room update from Susan P Blog

This is a very cold winter and we have found that heating this old house is turning out to be a very expensive experience. We mostly use a woodburner upstairs, which means it is lovely and warm there and still freezing cold downstairs. It is the same on the days we decide to use the heat pump instead of making a fire, but although the heat pump does the job upstairs it is very expensive to run

At first we considered installing a heat pump downstairs too, but when my husband retires we will be on a limited income and ...

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  • daily life
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