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One, two buckle my shoe.......

Here we are again....continuing on from October's Blog/Newsletter, we are still in an Auckland lockdown, and unfortunately I have been unable to interview Essential Gardens, however I have been luckily enough to get our neighbour Bev from "Littlehelpersnz" alongside. We had a lovely hour or two chatting about this wonderful new charitable venture she has developed. (As this newsletter goes to print, I am hoping to tee up an interview with Essential Gardens for our December issue and to include in this, an update of all the wonderful local identities I have been fortunate to interview throughout the year).

Following on from last time, and the weather being pretty wet, I have been continuing to occupy myself with some more Christmas themed embroidery. Previously I finished doing a Santa stocking for Kellie, and I was asked by my youngest son to make one for his girlfriend....I found I quite enjoyed picking up the needle and thread again after many years and I think especially the Christmas themed projects, as they have a purpose. The tricky thing with doing all of this in these strange lockdown times, is making use of what I have at home, as purchasing online is difficult, and the postage to Kaukapakapa is not so reliable, and as I have mentioned before, once I have a project in mind, I am extremely impatient and want to get going, however, I have found I have really liked using my resources that I have available.

Riley's Santa stocking is such a pretty one, the Angel's have lovely sparkly filament thread into the wings, if you did not see last month's newsletter, I have posted a photo again of Kellie's stocking, I really enjoyed adding the deer to her's, and I am sure I will reuse the deer in future cross stitch projects.....see I have already been thinking of doing a "Deer Sampler" for A Deer Cottage.... check out my webpage to see what homely "deer" furnishings we have waiting to welcome you, when you are able to come back.... click here

To view the photos push the slider arrow on the 3rd window.

Once I put the needle down, it wasn't long before I was thinking "what now?", I scrummaged through one of my crafting drawers and came across a Santa kit I bought many years ago, I thought it would be a lovely idea to complete it, and give it to my sister Rachael for Christmas, I am blessed to have such a kind, caring sister and I am sure she would appreciate someone making a cross stitch for her, rather than her constantly making cross stitch for everyone else. I completed this project yesterday, and as I put the finishing touches on it, I have already decided I am going to do this one again, I have found a perfect antique frame, that will just work a treat this space.

To view the photos push the slider arrow on the 3rd window. (see the gold buckle on Santa's shoes)

Interviewing my neighbour Bev Gordon from "Little Helpers NZ" was a fun way to spend a few hours, and as Bev is Gluten Free, I made use of some beautiful lemons another neighbour Sue had given me, and made my late Mum's recipe "Lemon Drizzle cake", and actually my husband Te Kani's favourite he was just a sniff away from us at all times throughout the interview! If you wish to receive this recipe email at:

I know Bev is so very busy, alongside her full time employment with Mercury (IT process orientated). Bev set up along with some key people "littlehelpersnz" an avenue for her to express her creativity. Bev desperately wanted to give something back, and "little helpers" was born. With the support of Mercury, and the involvement of some of her work colleagues, Bev got busy in her own time making beautiful little dresses originating from an old Debbie Bliss sewing/knitting pattern, and Huo Yien also got busy with patchwork. (Huo Yien's charity of choice: S.P.C.A).

Mercury support New Zealand's Children's Hospital "Starship", and a group from Mercury along with Bev got together to host two stalls, (one for sewing dresses and one patchwork) and all proceeds (excluding material expenses) were donated to Starship, this sense of giving back wheated Bev's appetite and her passion was set alight, Bev was going to take the stalls to the Markets, and was looking forward to their booking for November 2021, unfortunately as we all know Lockdown put a stop to all Markets for the forseeable future. With all this change, Bev roped in some family members and websites were made, Instagram and Facebook posts are posted, Logos were printed, technical problems are sorted, and family meetings are orchestrated.

Hannah, Bev's daughter suggested to Bev that she should sell her gorgeous wee dresses, however Bev stated she has way more satisfaction if the proceeds went to support a worthwhile charity, (all proceeds excluding materials donated). Bev's charities of choice are: Starship (children's hospital) and Pet Refuge (a place where your pet can go, when the pets owners have been removed from a violent home. Pet Refuge will look after the pet until the owners and pet can be safely reunited). When you purchase from 'little helpersnz" you can choose between the two where you wish your donation to be used. Bev has a few other charities in the pipeline she would like to look at: Red Cross Refugee resettling, and Woven Earth.

Bev is very proud that this new venture has the full support from her family, and is very grateful for her niece Rachael in Melbourne, Australia who has helped her design a gorgeous rainbow and cloud themed logo, a wonderful and "easy to see your way around " website that has a portfolio of all of Bev's creations. The website (crafting4goodnz) click here clearly shows you what has sold, what is available, receipts are fully documented and you can see where your donation has been sent. Rachael has the marketing smarts and helps organise the social media, board reports etc. Bev's son Matthew has the technical smarts and sorts out any tech issues, and Hannah, Bev's daughter has the product analyst smarts, and helps with sizing. To check out her website click here

As Bev has such a generous heart, she has had businesses donate wools, fabrics, buttons, threads. Bev shops around to get a bargain, her workmanship and material is of a high quality, her hand stitching is neat and natty, and will last the distance either hand washed or in the washing machine. Bev also makes hand knitted dishcloths which she has plans to use as give aways for future competitions. One such giveaway or competition could be when ''little helpersnz" hits 100 followers on Instagram. To follow on Instagram or Facebook: Littlehelpersnz

The prices are extremely reasonable for such a lovely little dress for your little princess or someone else's little princess...(new stock pending in the future), and what better than the majority of the cost will be donated to a worthwhile charity. Sizing 0 - 3 months, 6 - 9 months, 9 - 12 months, 12 - 18 months, 2, 3 and 4 years.

Bev also has plans to join up with local markets and mumma's markets once things open up again, in the meantime check out her website and support a wonderful cause.

If you wish to check out A Deer Cottage, and receive your 10% discount on 2 or more nights with your Subscribers discount click here until next time, take care and keep safe 🦌❤️🦌

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