Patra's Other Place

I started out with Patra's Place, primarily dedicated to my linen collection and stitching projects. But I kept getting side-tracked, so I decided to create Patra's Other Place for anything not related to embroidery topics. So you now have a choice. If you are interested in me, read this. If you only want to see my linen and stitching, visit Patra's (original) Place! (Please note that by clicking on any of the photos, they will be enlarged to fill your computer screen.)

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Location: Melbourne, Vic., Australia

I am married to Ken. We have no children except a cat and a collection of Australian parrots, finches, canaries and a dozen hens.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Newly hatched quail chickens.

Four baby silver quail chickens hatched out yesterday.  You can see photos of them on my birds blog here.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Been busy elsewhere.

Life is fun these days.  Ken has got used to retirement, not having to rush off to work any more, and not stressing over medical appointments that used to be squeezed in on his holidays or days off work.  He is doing a COPD rehab program twice a week down the road from where we live, which is much more convenient than going to the Austin Hospital and trying to find somewhere to park.
He's buying a new car next month, and we've had three quotes on having our kitchen renovated.
The aviary birds all seem to be happy as they are multiplying at a great rate.   The chooks would be too, if we didn't take their eggs away every day!

I did a workshop with Val at the Calligraphy Society headquarters last week, you can see what we did here if you want to have a look.  I haven't done much sewing lately, but finally got the sewing machine out of its case and up on the desk, and have been quilting some baby quilts that were given to me unfinished, to pass on to Ken's cousin to take to PNG on her next trip.  She emailed some photos of the native Mums and their babies with the first lot of quilts, and I've posted them on my PNG Quilt Collective blog if you haven't already seen them.

My friend C who was diagnosed with cancer last year is looking good.  The chemo and radiation has shrunk the tumour, so she will be having another operation to have it removed soon.   She has just  had one op. to remove the cancer from her liver, and she tells me the doctors were pleased with the outcome of that.

In the meantime another friend has told me she has stage 4 cancer spreading through her body...that makes it four friends with the Big Bad C in the last two years.   Ken and I count our blessings...

Saturday, February 01, 2014

Is your home your castle?

Isabelle over at In This Life blog has written a very thought provoking post about how she feels about her home.  I feel exactly the same about my home as she does about hers.  When I've been away, or even out for a few hours, I love the sensation of coming in the front door to all the familiar things.  I'm taking the liberty of quoting Isabelle here, as I can't put it into words any better than this:
Things are a big part of this. It's so beautifully easy to live in one's own house, knowing where everything is and how the devices work. And it's enjoyable to be surrounded with objects that please, colours that seem soothing, photos of loved ones.

With the hot weather we are experiencing at the moment, with the everpresent threat of bushfires, I always wonder how it feels to lose one's home in a fire.  Everything destroyed - not just gone away, but totally gone.  I've met a few people over the years whose house was burned down in a bushfire, and I could almost feel their pain when they talked about the things they miss most - in the case of quilters, the loss of a collection of quilts they have made over the years.  Others remember jewellery, photos, books, that can never be replaced.  You can rebuild or buy something else if you are lucky enough to have the insurance payout, but it would never be the same.

We drove past my childhood home a few weeks ago, and I wish we hadn't gone there.  I got such a shock to see it.  My dad always had it freshly painted, and the garden was full of flowers in season.  Fruit trees in the back yard.  But now, the garden looks like a jungle.  I doubt if it had been painted since Dad sold it more than thirty years ago; bricks and mortar were chipped and cracked, and the windows were dirty.  The inside blinds were torn.  It looked abandoned, but there was a car outside and we could see signs of life inside.  Perhaps I shouldn't be so judgemental; who knows what goes on behind closed doors?  The family could be struggling financially, or with ill health. 

I remember when Ken and I had just put a deposit on this house.  The owners had built it six years before, and they took us around the house and garden, proudly showing us what they'd done, and telling us why they had planted so many azaleas in one spot.   Each plant was an anniversary or birthday gift from one of them to the other.   We took care of those plants as if they were ours - well, they were once we'd bought the house!  But what I mean is, we took a personal interest in the plants, and didn't rip them out to plant other things in their place.  I sometime wonder if those first owners have ever driven past and seen what we have done, and what we have preserved of their garden. 


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