Patricia Margaret and Rhonda Jean

16 April 2008

Well, it's all over. A week of family celebrations and the unique joy that brings. The photo above is me and my sister, Tricia. The photo was taken yesterday just before she flew back to Sydney and I went to work. We spent a week together and I thoroughly enjoyed every second of it. I wrote recently that with age comes confidence but age also brings with it the need to draw your family and friends close and to celebrate important milestones. I am lucky to have the family I have and with each passing year, I realise with more certainty, how blessed I am to have them.

Tricia gave me some beautiful birthday gifts - one of them is pictured above. It's a 1940s sewing basket and it will now sits beside my chair in the loungeroom holding my sewing and knitting. We replaced the lining, as it was worn and tattered, but used the same colour pink satin fabric. Inside the original lining was this cardboard. It's from a box and on it is typed: "18/3/36 Mr Brierley, 3rd Fl, 109 Pitt Street, Sydney." The box was from Rogers Bros, Dyers and Cleaners. What a lovely find! Obviously, nothing was thrown away during WW2 and this cardboard box from 1936 was given a new life inside the lining of a 1940s sewing basket and now it sits in my loungeroom. Naturally, Tricia tucked the old cardboard inside the new lining.

I love finding things like that, real pieces from the past that remind me to recycle, save, be frugal and wise with the resources I have. And I love the basket. It's practical and beautiful and a constant reminder of a non-disposable world.

I have to apologise to everyone who is waiting for a reply to an email. I will reply but I'm hopelessly behind with them. And that reminds me, I received an email from the producers of Wife Swap asking if I'd like to be on the show as a "worm farm owner"! You all know what my answer was. LOL!


  1. Lovely photo of you and Tricia! Lucky you receiving a vintage sewing basket, too. Now Rhonda, surely you'd LOVE to do wife swap?!!!! That really made me chuckle!Think it would be my worst nightmare! X

  2. Hi Rhonda

    I wanted to stop in yesterday and wish you happy birthday. Somehow my own birthday ran away with me and I didn't make it to the computer.

    So ... belatedly ~ happy birthday. I was thinking of you yesterday.

  3. Wow, what a beautiful sewing basket, I wonder where you sister found it, she must know you very well, what a perfect present for you. So glad you had such a lovely birthday.

  4. What a wonderful find! It's beautiful! My laundry basket is a sturdy bushel basket. When I replaced the lining, the bottom was padded with the entire front section of the October 28, 1957 Denver Post. Cost 5¢, "Zhukov fired from Politburo - Party Chiefs Summoned to Kremlin" reads the headline. Inside, the 1958 Chevrolets and Ramblers have just come out.

  5. Hello everyone!

    Tracy, happy belated birthday to you too, darling. I hope you had a wonderful day.

  6. lol - gee and I thought you'd jump at the chance to be on Wife Swap :) They obviously hadn't read your blog if they thought you'd be remotely interested!

  7. Well that gave me a good laugh. You did ask for new ideas for swaps though ! ! !
    The sewing basket is very pretty. My sewing box was made by my Dad about 50 years ago for a family friend. When she died about 10 years ago her son phoned and asked if I would like it. It came complete with old bobbins, buttons and other bits and bobs. It was like opening a treasure box.
    Cheers, Eileen.

  8. What a beautiful sewing box, and a perfect gift for you - you have a good sister there; my dad made my sewing box for me when I was 15, so I treasure it but I've been thinking of putting some padded lining in the lid, it might be interesting to place a newspaper or magazine there for whoever finds it in the future. :)

    ... and you just don't strike me as a 'wife swap' sort of woman somehow ... :))

  9. What a great picture of your sister and you!
    Family is one of life's greatest blessings and it becomes more precious with each passing year!

    Wishing you a belated Happy Birthday!

  10. Wow, I've never seen a sewing box like that. How beautiful! And so cool that you put the cardboard liner back inside...

  11. Hi Rhonda, You look lovely and really very happy and no where as many greys as me! Cheerio Cherrie

  12. Lovely picture Rhonda Jean, you look so happy and content. Glad you had a such a good time on your birthday.
    I have never seen 'wife swap' but I can imagine!!!


  13. What a beautiful sewing box! And it sounds like your birthday was just perfect.

    Wife Swap - interesting thought!! Especially as they always pair complete opposites together. Can't think of anything worse.

    Happy belated birthday

    FiFi xxx

  14. Sounds like a delicious week!

    The Wife Swap thing made me chuckle. Ages ago I used to go to Rosemary Conley Slimming classes where a weekly highlight was listening to the class assistant read out the random assortment of notices in a monotone drawl.... When they were particularly (and unintentionally) hilarious I used to scribble them down in my 'Weight Loss Diary' for future amusement. One week's entry read:

    "Well done to all our losers this week, ladies, and especially to our Slimmer of the Week. Don't forget that theres £1 off the NoFat cookbook at our bookstall by the door, please leave the hall by the side entrance this week as the Brownies are practising their line dancing in the foyer and for your information, I've had a call from Sally at Channel 4's Wife Swap who'd love to hear from any ladies suffering mid-life crises or weight-related marriage problems for the next series".... you have to love 'em for their effort!

  15. I wonder what Hanno would think of Wife Swap. Probably not much, LOL.
    I also love them characterizing you as a "worm farm owner"! The mind boggles.

    Glad to hear you had a good visit with your sister.


    Anna Marie

  16. Happy Birthday Rhonda!! Sorry this wish is late; it sounds like you had a great time spent with family. And what a beautiful gift!
    So glad to hear that you won't be appearing on wife swap!! :)


  17. Wonderful picture of you and your sister! And such a lovely sewing basket. I don't have such a thing ... perhaps I should think about changing that.

    I couldn't possible imagine you on Wife Swap!! The very thought made me laugh. How on earth did they find you and lablel you "worm farm owner"?

    Glad you had such a wonderful birthday.

  18. I really like the sewing basket and the marvelous piece of cardboard. I love finding things like that tucked inside vintage items, I bought a vintage sewing table earlier this year and found the base of the drawer had been made from an old tea chest.


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