Some good food and back to Skool

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The last week of the school was pretty low key and I managed to clean out some frozen vegetable scraps to make a delicious stock for a ramen. This was inspired by a vegan ramen recipe, though I have added egg for protein.

And it finally came to the class posting at our school! Over the summer builders were frantically working away to make the deadline for our new school campus. Over the years our school has been in portable classrooms but with the popularity of our school and funds put aside for the project, our million dollar district has built a new school building – in our schools 22nd year of operation. We enjoyed a dedication by the Superintendent of the school before taking a wander around the campus to visit the teeny tiny playground where the kids really wanted to play on the digger ūüėÄ

Over the weekend we enjoyed some kitten sitting with RJ! Our next door neighbours friends kitten. She was only 10 weeks old and very independent. I have to say kittens are the best – she was the biggest distraction away from my studies. We all had such a special time with her!

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The kids went back to school and the day finally happened after 11 weeks of holidays – yep nearly 3 months off school!! Crazy town after we came back from Australia as we had another 3 weeks to entertain ourselves. So with my study schedule, it was a bit difficult so by the end the kids were saying they were bored but boy did they get a lot of screen time on their latest obsession Roblox.

Whatever, it is back to school and I am so happy to get my time to myself again!! Now I am writing another essay on Education in the 21st century which I am really enjoying. What really helps having experienced Progressive Education at our school for the last 8 years. It is so inspiring that I get to write about PBL – Project Based Learning. This makes me so happy to get back into the Australian Education system. Oh, I just discovered that you now have to pass a test that looks at your personal attributes to become an educator, very interesting and so very important!

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For our first day back at school, it was a minimum day – whoo hoo! Yep after 11 weeks of holidaze, we went back for half a day, ridiculous – tell me why? So that free time allowed me 1 hour of reading for Uni. So for the rest of the day, we cleaned out a chicken coop and later when we came home I was cleaning out stuff to give away into the garage.

In the evening I made a Rainbow Kale Salad, here’s the recipe…

1 bunch of dino kale (massaged with olive oil and lemon and left for a couple of hours under a tea towel to marinate)
3 x grated carrots
1 x small zucchini
2 x grated raw beets
cherry tomatoes
mint leaves
hemp seeds
avocado

  1. Grab a big bowl and leave the kale to marinate.
  2. Grate all your veggies in a food processor, cut tomatoes and break off mint leaves and add to the bowl.
  3. Cover with hemp seeds.
  4. Slice up your avocado on top.
  5. Fill a smaller bowl with this salad, top with roasted potatoes and Beyond Meat Sausages and vegan mayo – delish!

 

 

The week of wearing many hats

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The week finally came for the Textile Art Boutique and it was time to put on my retail hat and sell my stock inventory at my booth. Unfortunately for me the lack of people visiting the show this year was down 300 from 900 last year and I had to reconfigure my booth at the last minute which made me practically invisible at the show.

I really needed to be in a different location where I could display my rack without getting in the way of my neighbors – live and learn and I know for what to request for next year! Whether I will be making clothes is another thing? I really enjoy making and sharing my fun pieces but I really am in the wrong area to sell fashion – my ideal market is most likely Los Angeles or San Francisco where people are willing to dress up a bit more rather than wearing their exercise clothes everywhere they go! Still I am here in the suburbs and for now, I enjoy making what I would like to wear and I enjoy sharing these fun pieces. So on with the show and let me critique¬†my booth below…

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For one the way the booth is aligned means people have to walk into the space to check out my wares, according to a fellow artist at the show. She mentioned she used this configuration and it is intimidating for a lot of people to walk into a booth to look and I certainly did feel that way when I was knitting away and watching the crowd go by. Being at the back of my booth behind my stock was another problem as I could not really engage in conversation. When I stood up to chat people got frightened and left – I think I wandered too deep into their personal space barrier! I find that I can talk to anyone, this is from experience as a freelancer coupled with my personality but from where I was in my booth I hardly engaged with the customers. The customers would just look at my sunglasses pouch, check out how it worked and walk off. Another problem was that on either side of me the displays of the booth were huge with using massive room divider screens to display their fabric canvases and cards on one side and on the other side lots of wooden risers to display stuffed animals and 3D textile pieces so my booth just got lost as people wandered by. Lessons learned from this year is to streamline my product line and work on my display at home before I head to the show.

Now to put on my teacher’s hat for the Halloween Goodie Bag workshop at the Mountain View Public Library. We now have a total of 8 machines for the libraries drop in sewing on Saturdays and for the Sew Sew with FabMo classes that I teach. We had about 13 students in this beginner class last Tuesday. The class made a goodie bag for Halloween from four 8″ squares and a felt stencil of a Halloween image. The class went for 2.5 hours until the library closed as some folks really enjoyed detailing their stencils. I really enjoy seeing what people create when they come to my classes, how they take my tutorial and customize it. November 15 will be the next workshop with an infinity scarf made from stretch fabric to take home all compliments of FabMo for the fabric and Friends of the Library for the machines, thread, and supplies.

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On Wednesday I took a small break and went to the hairdresser for a mom’s time out and used the Manic Panic Hot Hot Pink this time to dye my hair and I just love it! It is so vibrant on the lighter parts of my hair (the gray) and it takes so well! I love how I can change the color of my hair so often with such fun colors – I wish I knew about Manic Panic years ago as it is Vegan and a Semi Permanent!

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Sunday I put on my helmet and got on my red bicycle for a ride early in the morning. There was quite a chill in the morning with the added bonus of the trail being very quiet. I had planned on just doing my usual 30-minute ride up and down the trail but then I decided I would try and find a way to the middle school from the trail. I hopped off the trail at Crittenden right next door to one of the Google buildings and I spied this cool sculpture so I had to stop and check it out.¬†I found the plaque and it read ‘Cast Bronze Horse – Deborah Butterfield May 2001’ and underneath it read ‘A Gift to the People of Mountain View From SGI’. SGI would have been in their heyday back then before Google had taken over the Shoreline area and I think the building (where Google is now) would have been the one my husband visited when he came to the Valley many years ago when he was working for SGI. And as my MIL mentioned, there is one of these sculptures in the lobby of the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford – I knew I had seen this before but I could not remember where.

So the week ended on a beautiful 1-hour bike ride¬†and all was good again. I just finished Missy’s Halloween Poo Emoji costume yesterday for Trunk or Treat this Friday! With Halloween this weekend it is very exciting!

Now to wear my student hat to get to studying as my classes start November 6th, for my Bachelor of Education so I can teach when we return to Australia in a couple of years. At least it is inside weather now and I can hang out at the library and study!

A piece a week – A dress for a wedding in the Redwoods and my fave pics from the Seattle Vacay

This week we went back to school after our 10 week summer vacation! I could not believe that the time flew by so fast and that the summer holidays were over so quickly. When school was out I thought – man this is going to be forever! As it turned out everything went well and the time flew by. We really enjoyed the time in Seattle with our friends and saw some very cool things so it leaves room for me to do a trip solo in the future to check out the art galleries and the Dale Chiluly glass exhibit near the Seattle Space Needle – I felt that I would like to spend time enjoying it rather than rush through it with the family.

This week with everyone back to routine left some time for me to ‘eat dessert first’ and that was to make a dress! I really need to get into production mode for the show in October but a friend gave me some fabric the other day and it was screaming to be made into something and I thought a perfect dress for a wedding, now I need to find some shoes ūüôā Everything went smoothly with the kids and their new classes and teachers and the best thing was going back on Monday and returning to our wonderful school community! Everyone had such a splendid summer and I think we were all ready to get back to routine, though somewhat slowly…

The dress I made this week – just needs some accessories and shoes (any excuse for new shoes!!)

 The fabric in the bottom of the dress is embroidered and that is the remnant of fabric my friend gave me and I found some black poly cotton fabric for the top of the dress from FabMo. The dress is a deep purple with shades of pink embroidery.

1st day for the 2014-15 school year!

Muppets of the sea shore

These anemone were an incredible colour at the Seattle Aquarium. We have only seen the green sea anemone here when we go tide pooling. The anemone reminded me of animal from The Muppets with his wild hair.

Lets ride that Orca!

 I love this picture for the kids expressions on their faces riding the tail of the wolf of the sea the Orca! The aquarium has this orca exhibit as the kids learning and play area.

My favourite animal Рthe sea otter 

This guy was just doing his thing in the water and I was so happy to have finally got an in focus shot of my favorite animal the sea otter. I even saw these guys in the wild when I was at Morro Bay in December.

Baby Cuttlefish

Well this may just be a super small cuttlefish rather than a baby but here is another cutie of the sea. I have seen these at the Melbourne Aquarium and they are about 10 times as big as this guy!

Neon Coral

Another stuffie for the collection

Frogs in the hot tub

At our friends place the kids were always looking for frogs in the hot tub. They just hung around the moist edge of the tub and were happy until the kids found them and played with them, carefully I must add!

Feel like some Cherry Pie

 We travelled to North Bend one afternoon to go for some cherry pie featured in a fave show from when I was younger РTwin Peaks. It was quite cool to be in there and try some pie! They had a wall of shots from the show and some interesting information about the cafe and the show. Just looking at the production stills took me back to the days when I watched it every week. Maybe I can find it at the local library to experience it all again!

Flying the rainbow flag on a house boat

 Our trip out to the Locks of Seattle and we saw a lot of beautiful house boats Рmake sure you do not go out the back door of this boat, you will land in the water! It is the best way to see Seattle from a boat and this tour was fascinating with the changes from the lake fresh water to the Puget Sound Рan inlet of the Pacific Ocean.

Space Needle 

Look carefully and you will find Mt Rainer

Wonderful public art attacking the Space Needle!

In the gardens – Dahlia

Bees just loved these flowers

Buds and flower

The super moon was in Aquarius when we were in Seattle – this was a pic from my Skyview App on my phone

Wallabies saying what are we doing near this moss covered rock in the zoo??

 We spent a day at the zoo with friends of ours and enjoyed our last day in Seattle with some familiar critters from our part of the world. I loved hearing the kookaburras and seeing the budgies and the parrots.

Hello handsome Rosella – you look familiar!

Jaguar sleeping – doing what cats do best!

A stunning toucan – so amazing to see them in real life, rather than on a cereal packet

This porcupette was born on my birthday – there was a string fence around it so people would not touch it :/

The kids loved this monkey with the moustache and the elegant posture

With our friends having a good time!!

Some random pictures of the kiddos I really loved the lighting from the shade of the trees.

A tree climber – can you get down now??

Look closely and you will find the photographer
Enjoying being up in a willow tree