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Monday, August 31, 2009


The posting with the photographs got a little complicated! I am not very sure how this
posting of photos is being done and got my son to help out - as a result it came without
captions or rather proper captions so please excuse that part of it.

The baby quilts both went to friends daughters one who opened a day care center and the
other who had her first baby. The triangular pieced quilt is with me and is a christmas present.
I do have another one which I will post photos of.

Right now two quilts in progress and a very long way to go. One is strip pieced in blocks, now to
be sashed and basted and quilted, the other a log cabin which is turning out to be lovely though I say so myself in shades of pink, reds and a touch of aqua! More on that.

Had a friend over for the weekend and since she is also a sewing enthusiast, we had a very good
time looking at all the internet has to offer in the form of tutorials, blogs and patterns. She lives in a rather remote area of Sri Lanka in the hills of Sri Lanka actually and computer access and
and continuity of access is very difficult. We take so much for granted by way of technology in
our cities whereas so many parts of Sri Lanka are still not able to take advantage of all that is available.

My apologies also for not replying to those who commented on my blogs. I was thrilled to see people had taken the trouble to read and comment and just figured out how to reply. I am a slow learner I think. Thanks for the comments. Everyone of them is appreciated.

Pictures!!!! Finally

Baby Quilt

2nd Baby Quilt

Quilting for a Friend

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Too many happenings!

The last few days has been overwhelming. I have had to accompany people to hospital
for check ups, and then subsequent visits to doctors and this round has not ended as yet.
On top of that I had visitors to attend to and although that is the enjoyable part it does
tend to take big chunks of the day. As a result my crafting/quilting took a back seat over
the last few days.

I was able to complete two more tote bags and I know they will be liked as one friend for
whom I intended to give it to for Christmas remarked on the bag saying I hope I am doing one
for her as well. OK. That means she likes it and she will get something similar - I myself love
surprises and hate to know in advance what my gifts are! so definitely she will get something
different, not the same tote bag hanging in there. Christmas seems very close now. I am hopeful
that my three children will be able to come home for Christmas this year (like they usually do)
I am also hoping that we could have a wedding in the family sooner than later and am crossing
my fingers hoping it will come true!

Weddings in Sri Lanka for my overseas readers are elaborate, lovely affairs. There is a church wedding which is almost identical to what my overseas friends would be familiar with - the only difference in attire where the bride may wear a sari instead of a dress. And there is the wedding which is very common in Sri Lanka today where people of two different faiths get married so there are two separate functions to satisfy both families. This is what makes it more complicated, of course more expensive and more interesting. There are invariably different sets of clothes, the different accessories, different hair styles and everything else that goes to make a "mixed marriage" wedding complete. Sri Lanka has a majority of Buddhists in this country, followed by
Hindus and Muslims with Christians as a small minority so the degree of mixed marriages is high particularly in cosmopolitan Colombo our capital city.

Weddings can also be very elaborate affairs in Sri Lanka involving a lot of expense, sometimes needless expenses just to keep up with the Jones. In Sri Lanka the trend of having weddings in your own home has become restricted mainly to very interior small villages where the lack of community halls, hotels and reception centres forces one to have it at home. However, the trend in cities is to have the reception in a wedding reception hall and cater for a sit down or buffet style lunch or dinner. Food at receptions is invariably very good with a wide variety of dishes to suit all tastes.

In lots of American and Australian blog sites people talk of change of the seasons and it is with so much affection for the coming autumn or spring or whatever. Here in Sri Lanka where invariably it is a dry hot season or a rainy wet season with not much change in the temperature it must be very nice to have such distinct change of temperature and have different clothes to wear for the different seasons. Of course it has to be expensive as well but one cant have everything can one?

I have still not been able to do the photographs and know that it is now an absolute necessity. Hopefully next week.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Informing friends and family!!!!

I was for whatever reason a bit hesitant to inform friends and family about my blog!!!! I know that amongst Americans blogging seems at least (to me) to be a way of life and there are blogs covering every aspect of one's life. But and a bit but, Sri Lankans are a little more private about most things and I was wondering how people would react to this!!!!

Today I informed friends and family about this blog and the reactions have so far been very good! People are in turn surprised, pleasantly so, some had not even known that I was interested in crafts (goes to show how much we keep hidden from everyone!!!!) and the reactions anyway have been very nice. I am so pleased with myself.

On another pleasant subject, I do feel that with the cessation of hostilities in our country, tourist arrivals have begun to increase and this is apparent from two visits I had made recently to Negombo and Hikkaduwa (both tourist destinations in our country). It used to be very sad to see Hikkaduwa once a bustling hive of activity so drab and most shops and little boutiques closed down. Now there is an air of expectancy - shops are being painted and you can see tourists trickling in. I do hope this trend will continue as tourism is an industry that is an income earner for not just the big hotels and travel operators but right down to the little man who sells batik, or the woman who sells hand made chains and coconut shell ornaments. The benefits trickle down to everyone in these areas and we hope that this is a good sign of things to come.

Right now I am having sponsors from Finland here who are helping me assist a children's home in Negombo where 40 girls are being housed. We help by way of supplying groceries, clothes, shoes and miscellaneous items as and when needed on a monthly basis. The children all go to local schools and are growing up very nicely. There are a fair proportion of girls from the North and East where the war was at its worst - but they have settled down very well in the peaceful atmosphere of this Negombo home. My sponsors themselves are here after a very long break - everytime they wanted to come out bombs were going all over the place, and it was always a question of putting it off for a safer time. Now the safer time has come and I hope that we will have more and more visitors here.

I have still not got around to uploading photographs on to this blog and this is I know something that has to be done urgently. Photographs make a blog so much more interesting than just reading about a subject and I promise you that it will be done shortly.

I am in the middle of a quilt but just cant get around to decide what colors I should use for sashing. Everything I place by the prints seem to either clash or just melt away into a colorless mess!!!! so I have put it aside till inspiration strikes.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Work, quilting and friends

Its been quite a while since I wrote last and the last few days has been extremely busy. In one of my previous blogs I had written about the work of getting sponsors for children in need in Sri Lanka and a comment made by a reader made me re-think the whole process. She had mentioned that this work must be very rewarding. To this I would dearly like to add a rider that apart from rewarding it is very frustrating!!!

In Sri Lanka we have a segment of very affluent people who could very easily spare some cash for helping out those in need and it is this segment of people who sometimes seem to me to live in a world of their own, not realising that poverty and need is just outside their door!!! How people can live in a little world of their own and never see what is in front of them I will never know. Anyway enough sermonising!

This last week I gave as a gift one of the baby quilts I had made. It was the first time I have gifted someone with a quilt and I really think that it gave me so much pleasure since I was so delighted with the way it turned out. It was a simple nine patch quilt, nothing fancy, but hand quilted of course and I do hope it will be used well.

Tomorrow another friend's daughter opens a day care centre cum activity centre for children and I have made another quilt slightly bigger than a baby quilt - in the coins pattern - which I will take with me as a gift. I am so delighted that I have been able to do this because if someone told me six months ago that I would be quilting again, I would never have imagined it to be possible.

Crochet is another craft that I would like to look at more closely. The granny squares made into spreads and afghans has fascinated me. Lets see whether I could learn this from one of the numerous bloggers around. More on that in a later post!!!

Right now in Sri Lanka the advanced level examinations are on. This is the examination from which students qualify for entrance to Universities locally. This is a time that not only the students but also parents are absolutely stressed out wondering whether their children would succeed in their attempts to get into Universities locally. University education in Sri Lanka is free but spaces are limited hence the competition is fierce. My good wishes to all students out there.

On most American blogs people talk about the changing of the seasons and are looking forward to fall. It must be a very nice feeling anticipating this because here we do not have specific seasons. It is either a rainy season which can be very very slightly cooler or the normal hot and dry season. Interspersed with that could be a time with no rains and drought or excess rains and floods!!! No specific seasons at all. The world is indeed different in all its aspects!!!

Till next time!

Friday, August 7, 2009

More giveaways!

Giveaway of a stimulus package!!!! everyone needs it now.

The blog is carrying a fabulous giveaway in two parts. One part of the giveaway is internationally open and the other is only for US and Canadian residents. It is fully worth your while to have a look see.

Another nice giveaway! at go check it out

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Two new giveaways

Pls go to http://sewfunquilts for a giveaway

and a very intrigueing giveaway to

Do go over to Jenny's blog - Elephantz and have a look!

Go on over to Bluebirds blog and leave a comment on her blog to go in the give away

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

More giveaways! My real work..

There is a beautiful giveaway of a quilt in the most exquisite colors at http://mariemadelinestudio.typepad.

Back at work today after a lazy holiday yesterday. In Sri Lanka apart from the Saturday and Sunday weekend, we also have a once a month holiday for Poya day. Poya signifies the day of the full moon for that month and is a day of religious observances for Buddhists. Of course it becomes a day of rest and relaxation and doing the million chores around the house for everyone else!!!

I finished my first baby quilt and have now pieced and basted the second ready for quilting. I am not so happy with the second one as I feel the colors do not quite go together. I am still a novice at the color matching and most probably will learn only with time.... There is such a world of quilts out there, one more beautiful than the next and some of them look so easy and pretty to start with that one is constantly tempted. I dont want to land with a whole heap of unfinished projects so have to think carefully of what I want to do next before I start.

Am solely tempted by the disappearing 9 patch as I do have some fabric that I think would be suitable for this but then there is another beautiful quilt design I saw on some blog. Plain white squares interspersed with a white square on which a pink heart had been appliqued and the whole thing quilted in swirls and hearts! My description is not as good as it looked.

I have been also neglectful of my work involving the sponsorship of children from poverty stricken homes and really should work harder at this as well. Its a project I started years and years ago - getting sponsors for children from poor families and trying to help them out even for a year or two at least to get them on their feet mainly for schooling. Schooling in this country is free for everyone, with even free uniforms being given once a year or rather the fabric to make the uniform and school text books also given free. However, shoes and socks, the other books, the pens and pencils and the bus fares all add up and some families find it tough when you have two children or more to find the money for all these added expenses. I was fortunate that this week two sponsors turned up out of the blue from overseas, and through a series of contacts of a friend of a friend found their way to me and in turn to four children which is such a godsend. Two of the kids lost their father just six months ago to a heart attack and since the children are only 7 and 5 it is difficult for the mother to find full time work as she has to be around when the younger child gets back from school by noon. The father was just 36 and the mother is just 30 so its a very young family to face tragedies so very soon in life.

The other family are in better circumstances with the father and mother both there for two little girls aged 10 and 5. The father works as a labourer whilst the mother is a stay at home mum. It is almost impossible to manage on a single person's earnings these days and hence they seek help.

So these two families have been taken care of so I now have to work harder to find people for the others on my list!

The weekend is coming up and looking forward to that and more sewing.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Monday, August 3, 2009

Another giveaway

The most beautiful vanity case looks absolutely gorgeous on this blog

A very generous giveaway!


Book giveaway

There is a book giveaway at

Journey of the Promise - promises to be a very interesting read.



Despite getting help with a tutorial how to post on a sidebar I was not successful with posting
about the giveaway hence the need to type out the whole address where beautiful and generous giveaways are currently on.

Good luck to all!


Saturday, August 1, 2009

Comments on my blog!

2nd August 2009

When I started this blog I thought the response would be zero! Very pleasantly surprised to see that people are interested in reading this little blog. Because I have not been able to put up images as yet as my knowledge of blogs is so very limited and I need help there, I find the blog to be rather plain and uninteresting. Its encouraging that people find the time to stop and read!

I am starting or rather started last night on a simple nine patch baby quilt for a friend of mine
whose daughter has had a baby. I am an amateur where the quilting is concerned and am amazed at the quality and professionalism of work displayed by people who are mostly quilting for the love of sewing and nothing else! I still find it difficult to actually come up with good color combinations and going thru the blogs I realize that this is a matter of experience and good taste of which I think I am sadly lacking...

I am hoping that the baby quilt will be pieced and basted today so that I could start on the hand quilting (which I do) by tonight and hopefully the quilt will be given this coming week. There is no point giving a baby a quilt when he is past the stage of a baby quilt. Practically every one of my friends are at the stage where they are becoming grandmothers for the first time and this is something nice to experience, even vicariously for me, because I can remember when we became mothers for the first time around! Seems a very long time ago. But actually time has flown and now friends are experiencing babies in a different manner which is also very joyful and happy. You have all the pleasure of the babies and none of the responsibilities and hard work!

Hope your Sunday was good!