Friday, October 31, 2008

Yashar update: Busted!

He can't even walk, but some how he manages to climb into and stand up in his Baba's sock drawer! What are you up to mister?? Nothing, I promise!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

I have climbed to the top of the tallest tree...

I finally managed to finish another little painting/illustration type thing (photos still not quite right- maybe I need a scanner?). It really is a slow process - because I am doing this while Yashar naps - it always seems that just when I have got everything ready and am starting to get into it I hear a little voice and the door to his room rattling as he tries to grab onto the door handle from his cot. But that's ok - it's fantastic to be able to have this time to spend making things and then time to spend with Yashar as well.

I was inspired to do this one when I heard this song:
I have climbed to the top of the tallest tree
And no one knows I'm here
And I could hide for hours and hours
And I can see for miles
And I have never fallen
And I will not come down
And the sun is shining

I don't know the name of the track or who made it so if you know please leave a comment - I would love to know.

While I was doing the last picture I think I mentioned that I wanted to work on colour with this one. So I looked at magazines and just around the place generally for groups of colours I liked. Then I spent a lot of time just mixing paints and making little swatches to play around with. Of course I still want to work on colour more, but I am happy with how it turned out.

I made it for my dear little niece Ruby and thought the colours would be cute in a little girls room. I am so sad to be missing out on seeing her grow (she is just a few months younger than Yashar). So I hope my sister can point to the picture and tell Ruby about her Aunty Verity.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Access denied

I feel like Mark (Christian Slater) in Pump up the Volume running a pirate radio station - Blogger, (the site I use to publish this blog) has been banned in Turkey. When you try to access the site here or any of the blogs hosted by Blogger a notice comes up saying that access has been blocked. I'm thinking about swapping to a different blog host, but until then I have connections, ways and means - so here I am bringing you a controversial post about handknits Pump up the Volume style:

I bought this yarn and linen a few weeks ago to knit a scarf for Senol. I was aiming for a cosy scarf that said "I am a man, and I am man enought to wear a cool handknit scarf."

But now that I am knitting it up I think that I might be borrowing it too. I'm not sure what I will be doing with the linen yet - I'm thinking Christmas ornaments - but we will see if that eventuates.

Knitting is very popular here and I was hoping to find some gorgeous natural yarns. So far though I have been pretty disappointed - acrylics make up about 90% of the stock at the places I've been to. And the quality of the natural yarns I've seen so far hasn't been great. So if anyone has any ideas of where I can get some beautiful yarn please leave a comment!

I'm thinking I might need to head to a nearby koy (village) to source some...haha, lets see if I can talk Senol into that one!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


These are Muşmula (pronounced Mush-mul-la) and they are in season now so Senol rushed to get some at the market before it was too late. I love the sound of the name. Muşmula. But the taste of these isn't what I'd call delicious. Sort of like eating raw quince if you've ever tried that. They make your mouth all dry and the texture is fibrey (is that even a word?) fibrous perhaps. Either way not particularly tempting!

I have been surprised by how many varieties of fruit and vegetables there are here that I have never even heard of. I thought we pretty much had everything available in Australia now - although maybe they are there at the market, and I just never recognised them.

I love that the availability of fruit and vegetables is so seasonal here. It just makes sense - they taste better and are generally locally grown. Shame on me for not knowing which fruit and vegies are in season apart from the basics! But I'm learning - seeing what's available at the local market, what's weighing the trees down in the neighbourhood.

Ooh I just had an idea - I might start a monthly post where I look at what is in season here and maybe even cook something and include the recipe. It might get me a little more inspired with my cooking too. Brilliant!

(and it makes me want to buy this book even more!)

Monday, October 20, 2008


I've been tagged by Renai to finish off these sentences. And sorry, I suck at these sort of things. And I admit, I never forward chain letters/emails, including the ones from friends where you fill in bits and pieces about yourself and forward it on. Even where it says at the bottom that bad luck will come your way, or that if you are good friend you will forward it on. I have this reflex that just deletes automatically. So here is a picture of some cute puppies to distract you from my answers, which I am sure will mostly be lame. This is the puppy I saved from the bucket of water by the way! I finally managed to get a photo of him cuddling up with some brothers and sisters early this morning.

At a certain age women should stop wearing hot pants.

At a certain age men should stop watching cartoons and playing computer games (apparently my husband is not aware of this).

When I was a kid I thought playing the drums was so damn cool!

Now that I am older I wish I had learnt something with a little more melody.

You know you are too old to go out clubbing when you would rather be at home by the fire with a good dvd and a glass of red.

You know you are too young to drive when you mistake the accelerator for the brake. Oops!

When I was in high school I listened to the music of Kris Kross - remember them?? Kris Kross will make you jump, jump, uh-huh, uh-huh... (the kids that wore their clothes backwards). They were the coolest.

Nowadays I find I like the music of Missy Higgins, Joss Stone etc.

On my last birthday I had moved to Turkey not so long ago and ate lots of cake.
On my next birthday I plan to eat more cake and enjoy the day with Yashar and the evening with friends.
The best birthday present I ever got was my now husband making it to Australia in time for my 21st birthday celebrations.

The first time I felt grown up was when...ahh, who am I kidding, I don't feel grown up at all.
The last time I felt like a kid was see above

Last year was spent mostly looking like I had a basketball stuffed up my top (pregnant).
Next year I hope to have an uninterrupted nights sleep.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Yashar update: He's more than just a happy face...

Yashar wanted me to let you know that a happy face is not the only one in his repertoire, he can also do a teary face quite well (when Mama won't let him play with the camera when she is trying to take his photo)...

and of course he can also be thoughtful and serious in a pursed lip kind of way (so funny because this is exactly the face I pull when I am really concentrating!).

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Present time!

I have noticed that lots of people are already getting into gear for Christmas - which is probably a good idea especially when I am trying to make things. My projects always, always end up taking me so much longer than I first thought. I started small - making a few little present ties to make the parcels I give extra special - kindly modelled here by Yashar's night light:) I got the idea from the ties on some little booties that Senol's mum made for Yashar. The shape reminds me of a flower from an Iznik tile pattern.

Thank you so much for the present ideas and for the kind comments about the illustration I did last week! We decided on what was sort of a combination of the ideas you gave: A set of blocks and a wooden long haul truck from Diamond Isle Treasures. I think Yashar is going to have lots of fun with these. I can't wait until they arrive!

*For all the cool crocheters out there - this is the pattern: Ch3, slip stitch into first chain to make a circle. For first petal: Ch3. Working into circle 2tr. Ch3. Slip stitch into circle. Repeat petal two more times. (First flower is complete). Chain as long as you want the tie to be (I did about 35 stitches). Repeat as per first flower. If you like you can then slip stitch back along chain to create a thicker tie (this is what I did). Hope this makes sense!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Happy Chappy (Yashar update)

Yashar is definitely a happy chappy. Full of smiles and laughs. His newest little habits include trying to pick up my eyelashes with his newly developed pincer grip (ow!), wanting cuddles (aww!) and trying to stick his finger in my mouth (eew!).
It's not too long until his first birthday now, looking at these photos, I'm thinking pirate theme.I really wanted to get him something handmade for his birthday and have been scouring Etsy the past few nights, but am having trouble finding anything fabulous. Sometimes it's hard to find the really good stuff on that site - I feel like there are great things there - I just can't find them. Any ideas?

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Knock knock

I have been getting into a bit of drawing and illustration type artwork lately. I have really been wanting to create a sort of moment in time. An illustration that has a little story to it I guess, or that is part of a story.

This is the process I went through for the one I just finished.

An idea, sketched in the back of my Wallpaper City Guide for Stockholm (if I haven't said it already - and I think I have - I love these guides!)

A stuff up... (I started to outline the boy's face in ink but it went all blotchy so I ended up outlining in pencil instead and I wasn't that in to the owl either)


I would have liked to have put more outline detail on the owl but I painted too thickly there :( And I really want to work on my colour more too. Anyway, this one is finished and I am happy about that! And man it is hard to take photos that show what these really look like (more stuff to learn!). It half makes me want to colour these digitally. The detail shots probably give you the closest idea of the real thing.

Monday, October 6, 2008

And a little more from Sweden

Just wanted to post one last thing about the trip to post...well actually I just wanted to show you a few of the cute little things we picked up in Sweden.

We went all out on the souvenirs ;) This is a packet of crisp bread - love the packaging and we discovered Yashar loves chewing on it. And then there are the tins of 'Makrill'...which lucky brother in law will be getting those in their Christmas stocking?? (hehehe).

And a cute little wooden helicopter for Yashar of course.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Midnight puppy rescue!

This post was meant to be all about the fancy schmancy scarf I made, but then I went and SAVED A PUPPY!!!! Oh my goodness it was so cute!

Last night I woke up to the sound of little squawky puppy yelps. We had seen a mother dog walking down the street with lots of puppies chasing after her earlier in the evening. The yelping kept on going for a while so I put on my big winter coat over my pjs and, using my camera display as a torch, I went to investigate. Eventually I followed the sound to a neighbour's front garden. I ventured in (hoping there wasn't going to be a big mama dog ready to bite me!) and found the pale little puppy stuck in a tall bucket of water. The poor little thing was all wet and cold and pitiful. So I pulled him out to dry ground and off he pattered home. What a nice feeling - I was so excited to have rescued him I couldn't get back to sleep!

Anyway, back to the scarf...since it took me so freaking long to make it still deserves a mention. I managed to get it finished just in time for our trip to Sweden (and I was so glad I did -I needed it!). And yes(!) it is crocheted. I mentioned a while back that I wanted to learn to crochet and I even put it on my 28 things to do before I turn 29.

And now I have done it.

Well actually I just learnt the two stitches required to make this but I'm counting that as learning to crochet achieved. Tick! It was pretty slow going, although I did get faster and the stitches got looser as I went along. And it was very repetitive, I just wanted to get that darn thing done! I was like a crocheting machine! Any car trip we went on (and there were quite a few lately) I braved the possibility of looking totally uncool and slightly crazy and madly crocheted as fast as I possibly could.

For some reason I think that crocheting is safe to do in the car but that knitting is not. I guess the crochet hook is not all pointy and long like knitting needles, but I'm really not so sure. Airbag, crochet hook, Istanbul traffic...I really don't know if they are the best combination.

I'm so glad that I decided to do a test run on a scarf before attempting the blanket from Vintage Crochet...hmm let's just say that a blanket will not be getting done any time soon (read as I would be totally insane to attempt that). But if you have more patience than me the blanket is still gorgeous - especially the version Alicia Paulson did which I love. So go ahead and get blanket crazy - and then you will have something around any puppies that need rescuing!