Creative Chaos

Creative Chaos

Friday, 28 June 2013


End of a week. Thank goodness.
I woke at 7.55 am this morning; jumped into shower;$ jumped out and hung out 3 loads of laundry outside - woo hoo- jumped in car and whizzed down motorway shovelling vogels into me and got to work on time! ( I hate being late - never am!)
Did an impulse grant application at school.
Processed yet more new books.
Sold just a few at our Scholastic book fair (target $1000).
Home to do more laundry and hang out tonight even if it will be 2 degrees!

Big thing - my professional registration from the New Zealand Library Association came through - woo hoo. Big deal, especially for a,primary school librarian - only 60 of us around NZ have this in schools! School librarians bottom of pile in recognition and pay... Never mind that I used to be a public library branch manager.... I keep on trucking on!

The hat I knitted last week - dropped at the airport on my first wearing - grrrrrhhhh - too lazy to go back and pick up!

Weekend - have a massive pile of old fleeces ready to chop up and make hot water bottle covers - yippee.
And knitting a lots of it. Spent a lot office this week driving around , school board meetings, stayer longer at school to do stuff etc! Need to knit my new cardigan which I am loving!

Oh and I made a little red riding old cape just like that! It will be at school disco tonight on a friend's daughter.

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Changing times

I work at a school which I dearly love. We have many many ESOL kids. The thing about lower decile schools to me is lower vocab and much lower general knowledge than other children out there.

Today while reading Margaret Mahy and Gavin Bishop's wonderful picture book "Mr Whistler" (it just won the NZ Picture Book of the Year last night!) , we came across a handkerchief . None do the 5-9 year old kids in two classes knew what a handkerchief was.
I just asked my own 9 year old - "it's a piece of wool which you blow your nose on." (this kid DOES know what wool and fabric / material is due to his mother's hoarding of both of them...)

Then at soccer practice last week the coach yelled at my son and his team mates (12 year olds) to stop acting like a bunch of wet blouses - many of these boys had no idea what a blouse was.

Times are changing and our language too! Dictionaries are fascinating things to read just by themselves to me.

Talk and read to your children a many kids are turning up to school with 2000 words less than 5 years ago - not just Maori and Pasifika kids either.
Best thing is if you do not have time to read, buy your child a cd player and investing talking books (CDs) from the Book Depository and turn those on at night!

Sunday, 23 June 2013

Matariki Crafting

"Stuck" at home (so disappointed about missing my Christchurch weekend), I finally finished off a big cross stitch I started in January!
It is called "favourite things" (summer) and I love it! Worked slowly over weeks , but I really could have finished it moths ago if I had not knitted so much. ;)

The pattern can be bought through Liz at The Stitchsmith. I first met the lovely Liz at the missed "little craft store" in Pt Chevalier where I took one of her embroidery classes. 
Her kits are beautiful! I have several bought but still to make...

Her designs are contemporary and include needlepoint, cross stitch, embroidery, kits, patterns and charts and stitching accessories. Have a look at her website -

Now to decide what colour to get this work framed in - the husband thinks a nice bright cherry yellow.
What do you think?  (I leave the ironing of my work to the professional framers!:) )

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Jetstar - no star in their service

Due to fly out 9pm.
Receive text message new flight 10.30pm.
Continually look at website and flight gets pushed out and out till 1.30am.
Do domestic flights really fly into Christchurch at 1.30am.
Ring them and talk to robot - yes flight still on.
Ring a bit later bang on at 10.30 pm and talk to real person.
Told that my flight is going right now and to disregard their updates on computer.
People should only follow text messages as that was last personal message to you.
Drive out to airport - thankfully not too far away.
Yes flight still on.
Get luggage.
Come back in and flight at 2.30am...
queue up with A LOT of people - then find out most of these poor people have had their luggage left behind in their original destination.
Three staff on and had to call someone to deal with people trying to get on flights and not luggage .
Book in , go upstairs, realise put book and writing paper into suitcase.
Go to sleep. (by then the domestic terminal closed and turned into hotel.)
Rudely woken at 1.15 am to say flight CANCELLED.
Tosses. Knew hours before that due to crew hours, we would not be flying.
Option of hotel and flight at 12.30 pm today and a $100 voucher.
NOPE - I want more than a crazy 24 hours in Christchurch...
Then the idiots would not re- book me in a few weeks.
Home sad.

Customer service appalling!!!!!!!!!

I fly with them in 3 weeks to Wellington to school library conference...


Friday, 21 June 2013

Kept out

I am supposed to be flying to Christchurch for a weekend with a girlfriend tonight - started off as a 9pm flight and now it is up till midnight... Doubting whether I will get there tonight!!!
The country has had a wicked storm kick through the entire place!
Hit Wellington hugely with huge amounts of damage, snowing in Christchurch and a lot of other places in the South Island, Auckland had phenomenal thunder and lightning and hail - the hail was something else!

I am packed with plenty of knitting if I do get there and are house bound - oh I am / was looking forward to seeing April so much too! Fingers crossed.

A hat I whipped up - got annoyed a lot with the pattern as I kept on losing count but it wasn't hard.
Finished a sock tonight too! Dying to start knitting my Waikiwi orange wool, but have 3 socks now without a mate...

Keep safe, warm and dry and do not drive anywhere unless you need to New Zealanders!!

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Pukekohe Delights

It was my aunt's birthday, so I took her out to lunch in Pukekohe , a rural township south of Auckland city. I grew up only about 20 minutes from Puke, but oh my, what a transformation the township was! I was stunned at the volume of traffic and how busy the place was on a Saturday morning!
It did make me think how delightful to just walk into town and buy things from strip shops (the high street) would be instead of the soulless Westfield shopping centre 50 or so metres from my house. 
The township felt like a real community with families out and about, children in sports uniforms, eating out etc - a totally different feel to city girl me!

I found a fab vintage cafe called Kaos - loved the vintage chairs out front (my grandparents lounge suite), vinyl covers on the walls, a record player playing and I loved the brunch - a very busy place but very quick to bring lunch! 

And - OOPS - a gorgeous , divine wool shop!!! Oops. :). I do not live near a wool shop and have to drive down a motorway to get to one (not my favourite part of Auckland to be driving around either!), so yes ... I bought a few balls. The Happy Feet sock wool was only $5 a ball which is incredibly cheap to me! (made in China.. I am usually a NZ 100% wool girl supporting our industry). Loved the new (NZ brand) Waikiwi sock wool colours too and bought a gorgeous orange set. And a couple of new patterns..

A lovely day out with my aunt - I need to do things like this more often.

Sock knitting has continued ... I dodged the horrific rain we have been having to take these pics of my latest ones!

Sunday, 16 June 2013

The last film shot on 35 mm in New Zealand needs your help - please read and help with pledging!

I heard about the last short film being shot on 35mm being made in New Zealand yesterday.

Please help these lovely people achieve their aim by the end of June! New Zealand has an amazing film industry and we need to help support it and keep it going!

Please read this press release - 

CANDLELIT PICTURES are running out of time to make a film about

running out of time!

Candlelit Pictures last short film Runaways screened in the official selection of the prestigious American Film Institute Festival in Hollywood last year, this year we’re trying to go back to the same festival with Hold Your Breath - but we need your help to make the film before we can even submit it!

Peter Jackson's company Park Road Post, along with Queenstown Camera Company, ImageZone, and the Wallace Arts Trust - have all come on board to support the film already, roughly to the value of $50k, however almost all of this sponsorship is in the form of gear - so we still need money to pay for everything else you need to make a film (gear, flights, shooting on location, lighting, props - and all the other things you can see on the screen!). If we can't get the film shot by the end of June, Park Road will close it's film processing lab (which is the last one in Australasia) - and our window to make the last short film shot on 35mm in New Zealand will have closed!

The film is called Hold Your Breath - and it's about a woman named Ann who has just two days of freedom before she's incarcerated for at least a decade. The film is a reckless adventure in

the South Island, where Ann attempts to make such potent, vivid memories, that she might be sustained by them through her time in prison. The film aims to inspire it's audience with the question 'What would you do if you only had two days?' It's a meditation on memory and youth - and appropriately, we're running out of time to make it.

 We've started a crowd-funding campaign, that aims to raise $10k in just eight days to cover things such as shooting on location, lighting rigs, props, food for the crew, gas, and more. It’s really ambitious - and we’ve been overwhelmed by the support we’ve had already - almost $4k in the first day! However we need your help if we’re going to make it to $10k in just eight days!

If you're open to it, please consider posting a link to our Pledge Me page on your blog - we’d be super keen to help create specific and unique content for you if that helps, just let us know what you’re looking for and we’ll hit you back with everything we’ve got!

Since we started Candlelit Pictures in 2010, the purpose of our company has always been to create visually beautiful, well written, and well directed works of cinema that commend our little island to the rest of the world. We’re young and enthusiastic, we love living and filming in New Zealand, and we love working with celluloid more than we love eating!


- Share our Pledge Me Campaign on your blog, and through your social networks - encouraging

people to give today’s coffee money to a worthwhile NZ film! Every $5 donation brings us

closer to making this film a reality! - Pledge money yourself.

You can read the full synopsis of the film here if you’re interested.

If you’d like more information about this, or to schedule an interview with Jordan Dodson, Alix Whittaker, Anna Duckworth or any of the cast and crew, please contact Alix Whittaker on 027 600 6565 or at 

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Matariki Crafting

 Matariki is the Maori New Year in New Zealand celebrated late May/ mid June. traditionally was a time of remembering the dead and celebrating new life.

Tartan Kiwi has started a blog series on Matariki Craft where every day you can visit a kiwi blog and learn a new crafty thing. It is fantastic and I have already enjoyed the first few days.

You can link in too with and there are prizes to be won for New Zealand bloggers too if you link up.

I've finished a few things over the past week but my camera battery needs to be charged!

Remember Maggie the Rabbit I finished just under two weeks ago? I have started a new friend for her too! These rabbits could become quite addictive I think! Maggie sits on the chair in my bedroom - of course my boys have shown no interest in her!

So this is my first link up with up with Tartan Kiwi showing off Maggie.

 Go and visit Tartan Kiwi and join in with the Matariki Crafting!

It is fantastic to get to read other kiwi blogs too.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

I'm happy

I'm happy. Photos say it all. Naturally is one of my favourite New Zealand wools - pure 100% wool.

Sale on at Knitworld till June 21. They mail order too . Projects all lined up for this wool - I just don't buy wool just because .. Ha ha!

Saturday, 8 June 2013


My life is so non exciting that the excitement of the coming week is a big wool sale..... Debating about whether i ring shop , give card entails and get them to hold to pick up after school(if they will do that!) use some time in lieu owed and be a couple of hours late to school or mail order...

Lovely autumn leaves here.

Tulips on my dining table.

Sock knitted in 4 days. Hat knitted in no time over 2 car journeys. Another sock started with gorgeous Oamaru alpaca.

Loving my youngest who is currently wearing this balaclava everywhere - he does not care what anyone thinks of him! If you see me with said child in public give me a sympathetic smile :)

Partying with 3 year old nephew.

Seeing my niece in a cardigan I knitted.

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

The best

The best husband - 17 years married so he whisked me off to a city hotel for the night and we had dinner out at Peter Gordon's Bellotta. Great Spanish tapas - just what I like with taste!!
(I have started taking zinc to see if it helps improve my taste. Tried sushi again today - nope.)

The best weather all weekend.

The best shopping (what you get away with on your anniversary:) ) 
- wool, knitting needles, books, stationery from the Japan shop, fabric (lots of flannelette at 40% off) and a gorgeous Jamie Oliver pie dish and mug. Some of the stationery ear- marked for lots of new pen friends - little things to go with cherry mail.

And gumboots for me - a good old New Zealand brand.

Nice and relaxing and a day spent pottering with the family on the Queen's birthday. Another sock finished too and mother sock started. And the winter vege garden finally planted!

Monday, 3 June 2013

nz green buttons: the hottie project - FAB idea making hot water bottle coversfor Christchurch

nz green buttons: the hottie project: Have you heard of the hottie project yet? I'm joining in to help the children of Christchurch. It's a truly touching thing to do ...

Maggie the Rabbit

I am so delighted with Miss Maggie Rabbit! 

One of my most favourite blogs ever is (Alicia Paulson).
it is beautiful and Alicia is so talented! I have also bought her Woodlands cross stitch kit, but have yet to start it.

I ordered two of the Miss Maggie Rabbit kits and am so pleased I did - this one arrived last Tuesday and was finished by Friday night - gorgeous fabric and felt and wool and so easy to make and follow the instructions! I made it by sitting down every now and then - it whipped up very quickly! It did take me a few minutes to figure it how to do blanket stitch again, but once I got the hang of it, away I went!

I am especially thrilled with her little boots!  I wqs also taken by how to knit a semi circle coat - very clever!
I could make one for all my four nieces - will have to find more fabric although I probably do have some in my stash somewhere I could use!

ThisMiss Maggie will sit on the chair in my bedroom for a wee while....