Sunday, February 27, 2011


On Thursday the 17th of February at 8:48pm we excitedly welcomed our third baby into the world. David John was born weighing 9 lbs 4 oz (or 4.205kgs) at Hutt Hospital after we arrived there about half an hour earlier. Both he and I were healthy and well, and after finding out that there was only a shared room at the hospital for the night we just decided to head home at about 11:30pm to sleep in our own bed (and probably to the relief of my lovely friend Nikki who was looking after our children, as it meant she didn't have to spend the night sleeping on our couch).

My Boys
Taken by Rachael Brown Photography, David 7 days old with his 2 year old brother Timothy

As the kids had been in bed when we headed to hospital, when they woke in the morning we called them into our room to show them their new brother. 'Have you been to the hospital Mummy?' Penny asked. Yup! And it was lovely to have gone home so quickly afterwards. There's no place like home.

On arriving home, approximately 3 hours old

The 'big' kids are thrilled with their little brother, they want to kiss him, stroke his head constantly or hold him. I love just how much they appear to love our new addition. These photos are a bit misleading of poor David, they make him look HUGE, but I think in these pics he's all puffy from the birth still (plus being wrapped like a mummy bulks him up a lot too)

David and his siblings, approximately 12 hours old

We all love David to bits.

Sadly though, while breastfeeding  and snuggling with him there has been plenty to watch on the telly. Coincidentally, on his due date of the 22nd, New Zealand was shocked by the catastrophic earthquake that hit Christchurch. I can't even begin to summarise the damage and devastation that's been caused by the earthquake - but my friend Ali has managed to post about it and has some great photos on her blog here. I remember when the news of it started scrolling across the bottom of the programme I was watching on telly while feeding. It simply said something like 'Aftershock in Christchurch, more news to follow shortly' and I had just no idea of the enormity of the destruction of the earthquake. And when the news followed with it's unedited footage straight from Christchurch it had a mesmerizing affect - it was awful to watch, but we couldn't turn it off as it was just so unbelieveable.

When you look at some of these images with before and after pictures of the buildings, it's amazing that some people have been rescued from them - sadly though the death toll at the moment is 147 and rising. In September people were so thankful that the earthquake had occurred in the middle of the night, this time though the earthquake was at 12:51pm - lunchtime and so Christchurch was bustling.

The CTV building

The Pyne Gould Corporation Building

The Christchurch Cathedral

I can't even imagine the grief and loss people must be experiencing at the moment. And so this post seems a bit like yin and yang - on one hand we're thankful and thrilled with our new baby, and on the other we're so sad for the people of Christchurch and the loss...of lives, of homes, of water, power, of jobs - so much.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Hope Fundraiser Winner!

I have a winner for the fundraiser!

I allocated every person as many 'tickets' as they'd purchased as numbers in my spreadsheet - eg, if Mr X bought the first 4, then he had slots 1-4. Then Mrs F bought 2, so she was allocated slots 5, 6 in the spreadsheet, and so on.

I'm thrilled to let you all know that 188 tickets sold - and there were donations that came in as well to my paypal account - all of which have been transferred in Hope's account.

The winning number was selected using random selector - and was the number 15. Matching this up with my spreadsheet, the person allocated the number 15 was *drumroll* Miss Shelley! I'll be in touch Miss Shelley.
Thanks again everyone for your support!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

More Ways To Support Hope

Besides the giveaway I'm running here to help support Hope Osborne and her family, there are a huge number of very generous people with other auctions running (let me know if I've missed any too, I'm happy to keep adding to the list) - please have a look at them and see if there's something that you'd like to bid on.

On trademe:

For people in and around the Wellington region - a fabulous photograph shoot with Rachael Brown Photography and a disc of the images here

A gift card for a custom made/sized Unido Sling in your choice of fabric. Great for anyone with a baby or as a lovely gift for a family here

Some wonderful donations of yummy yarn that are hard to get in NZ - all with $1 reserves (I'm still trying to work out how I can bid on some of these myself! They're all delicious!)

2 x 4oz skeins of Mosaic Moon Licorice Twist - Colourway: Spice Chest. This is a gorgeous warm colourway, not often dyed on this base (and very hard to get), the base has lent itself wonderfully to take in such warm cherry and auburn tones. Donated by Belinda McKay in Australia and you'll find the auction here

2 x 4oz skeins of Shoestring Organic Merino (Gaia Worsted) - Colourway: Little colt (Ponies-Horsie Hybrid). This is an extremely hard to get yarn in NZ, and a very hard to get colourway, Very gender neutral and would make the most perfect newborn clothing or even a sweet little rainbow dress (Tikki - Georgie Hallam Pattern) for your gorgeous daughter. Donated by Belinda McKay in Australia and you'll find the auction here

A 150gm skein of Wollmeise Sockenwolle 80/20 Twin (a fabulous machine washable 4ply/fingering weight yarn) in the colourway Sabrina, donated by Lisa Scott here

A 4oz skein of Family Roots Kona Superwash DK/8ply in the colourway Yarnia, donated also by Lisa Scott here

Some beautiful and original artwork for children's rooms - painted by the talented Nikki. A butterfly here and a sailboat here

A slate Moby wrap, another fabulous way of babywearing - the auction is being run by the lovely Robyn of Scarecrow Farm here

A Seaspray Bonnet/baby hat handknit by Alison in beautifully soft yarn, perfect for a wee baby here

An Elite Cruiser Frontpack donated by Nikki here

An Amazing Game Book with 50 activities and games here

A Peke Moe in blue, with a freebie one thrown in too - donated by Gina here

A handcrafted Bells Stuff bear - donated by Sheryl here

A beautful handcrafted Oamaru stone carving by a talented Wellingtonian carver Tim White here


On individual blogs

Alison has a lovely skein of Old Maiden Aunt yarn here

The yarny giveaway running here on my blog, just $5 for an entry :)

Krissie and Hannah are teaming together to provide a custom knit in gorgeous hand-dyed yarn of your choice on Krissie's blog here - again, just $5 for an entry and it's a wonderful prize.


On The Nappy Network - anyone can join to have a look at the auctions! You'd be surprised at what bargains some of the auctions are at the moment! And there's something for everyone, all are brand new.

* A custom knitted Milo Vest, you choose the size and colour here

* A one of a kind Zig-Zag Quilt here

* Some cupcake stitch markers here

Of course you can donate directly to Hope's account - time is of the essence at the moment.

Hope Osborne

I can also accept and pass on any paypal payments from people living internationally. My email address for that is


'I'd like to do something too'

Then do! There are a range of things you could do to help out.

* Start your own auction and sell something with the money going directly to Hope's family, or make a donation

* Talk to people at your work/church groups about perhaps supporting the Osborne family

* Pray and send positive thoughts the Osborne's way, ask others to also

* Wellington people - there is someone collecting meals/baking etc on behalf of the Osborne family, email me here for the contact details if you'd like to help with some meals for them. Dairy free meals and baking would be greatly appreciated

* Turn off the computer and go and spend some quality time with the people you love, not to sound soppy, but go and create some wonderful memories with your own kids, grandkids, parents, siblings, friends. Life is so precious.

Right...turning off the computer now


Friday, February 11, 2011


This February, as I wait for the arrival of my baby #3 and get over the 4th birthday of my daughter, Hope and her beautiful family have been dealt some heartbreaking news.

Hope, a little Wellington girl turning 4 in almost a week was diagnosed with cancer 2 years ago. Since then she’s gone through countless painful and difficult procedures and earned 900 beads. Rachael (who took the stunning photos) summed it up when she wrote “In New Zealand, when a child is diagnosed with cancer, they start receiving beads. The beads are part of their story and recognise and honour a child’s bravery throughout their journey with child cancer. They are collected at each hospital visit, and for each treatment they receive on their journey” And yes, Hope, 2 years on from her first diagnosis has 900 beads.

When all these beautiful photos were taken in October 2010, Hope had been in remission and had been treatment free for 5 weeks.

This week though we all learned that Hope’s cancer has returned and is spreading – sadly this time the only treatment will be palliative. Hope’s family have been given a terribly short time frame to enjoy her. It’s devastating news for any family to have to try and come to terms with.

And so this brings me to the giveaway. Wouldn’t we all like to do something to ensure that in the time Hope has remaining her family have to worry less about money and bills. Wouldn’t you like to help ease some financial pressure so that the family can spend as much quality time as possible together?

So, I’ve put together a prize for anyone with an interest in yarn and knitting on behalf of the Hope Osborne Society. It includes:

A handmade swift, carefully handcrafted by my husband. For more details on how to use/assemble see here

Yarn -
2 x 50gms balls of Noro Kureyon, 100% wool, colour no 124 – Reds, purples and pinks.

2 x 100gms skeins of Jolly Jumbuck 4ply/fingering on the Zeus base (60% merino, 20% cashmere, 20% nylon) – colourway ‘Ancient Mariner’

1 x 100gms skein of Touch 4ply/fingering Pure NZ merino – in a lovely pastel combination of pink, purple, yellow, green and blue

2 sets of professionally made (not by me) stitch markers. These come in a beautifully made stitch marker holder.

A Work in Progress bag

Postage anywhere in the world

STOP PRESS! Tash from Knitsch would like to add a skein of Hazel Knits in the very pretty pink colourway 'Tulip' to this raffle. The details of that skein are: Artisan Sock base: This superwash fingering weight merino wool, custom-milled exclusively for Hazel Knits, has a tight twist giving you beautiful stitch definition. The 10% nylon provides added strength making it perfect for socks, but in colors this pretty, it is a great choice for shawls, sweaters and mittens as well. 90% merino, 10% nylon.400 yards / 365 metres. 8-10 stitches per inch. US size 0-1.5 needle / metric 2.25 - 2.75mm. RRP $32

The value of this would be well over the $190 mark, and could be yours for the grand sum of $5NZD! Though of course you’re not limited to one entry!

Now, if you’re not into yarn and knitting but would like to help, feel free to give a donation directly to Hope’s account:

Hope Osborne

To enter this giveaway:

* You must make a donation of $5 NZD to my bank account – Julia Stanfield, Westpac: 03 0502 0525982 002

* After you've made your donation pop back here and leave your receipt number/reference with your comment and way to get hold of you.

* You can enter as many times as you like, so if you want to deposit for example $20, then you'll have 4 entries

* This will close at midday on Tuesday February 22nd (to allow enough time for weekend deposits to clear)

* I will post out the prize to the winner free of charge anywhere. And for those of you not living in NZ and unable to make a deposit online, I am happy to accept Paypal payments on your behalf so you can enter. My paypal email is and obviously if you can cover any fees it means that I don't have to.

* I can assure you that 100% of all money will be passed on to Hope’s family. I will cover any postage costs.

Friday, February 4, 2011

A few things for the babe

I've knitted a few things for the babe - I may as well share them!

First up, and first knitted as well were a pair of Pebble vests and a matching hat. This lovely yarn was hand-dyed by a gorgeous friend of mine Emma. I love them to bits and hope that the babe will get to wear them lots.

Next came a striped Young Einstein from my Little Rascal's e-book - I was a bit lazy with this and so just did 2 rows of each colour so I didn't need to sew in any ends on the completion of it, it worked fine so I'll do more like this one day.

And I made a little Tubey hat to match

Next came a little Helena matinee jacket in a lovely light grey merino.

Followed by a lazy soaker (i.e no leg cuffs/ribbing in the round)

I can't wait to try this Cabled Teddy Hat on him - it was lovely to knit and so cute. The chocolate brown melody from Bendigo Woollen Mills too means that it's beautifully soft and has great stitch definition

A 4ply/fingering weight 100purewool Eden's Adam singlet

And to use up the rest of the yarn I cast on a 4ply/fingering weight Garter Stitch Kimono lovely and practical as it appears, I don't think I'll EVER knit another of these. It felt like it took forever (even though it was 10 days in the end) and almost killled my will to live knit. Please excuse the terrible inside unblocked pics too *blush* - modelled photos will be far better I'm sure!  

Oh, and I knitted this Snug last year...but I've only just added the buttons. I was going to dye it the appropriate colour after the 20 week anatomy scan, but I quite like it in cream I've decided.

I'm not sure just yet what he'll be wearing home from hospital (truth be told I couldn't tell you what my other children wore home!) but he's most likely to be in a capsule wrapped up in the Wool Leaves blanket I made especially for him. I know I've already blogged about it (and I will blog about it again as I am able to knit these to sell) but here's another photo or two

Not all of the knitting is newborn sized though, that would be a bit pointless seeing as he's a) of a reasonable size and b) due in February, so not necessarily going to be wearing layers and layers of wool.