Monday, November 2, 2009

Cairns, Kay and Sandra

Well we arrived at Cairns - not at all what we expected, it is built on the coast surrounded by Mangrove swamp with hills at the back. Arriving, at Cairns we drove to the resort of Palm Cove, around a 25 minute drive north. Palm Cove is a beautiful and filled with tourists from around the world. For my overseas readers Cairns is the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, which one reaches by boat, and does have crystal clear 25 degree water and amazing coral and fish.

This was an adventure for Simon and I as neither of us had previously been to Cairns before. Upon arriving we stripped off our travel gear and changed as the climate is tropical 30 degrees, hot and humid. We took in the sights walking along the beach, did the boutiques and walked to the end of the jetty. This is me on the end of the jetty - and yes the water was that colour do to the wind and the choppy seas.

The most beautiful and interesting thing to me (other than the 'Beware of the Crocodiles' signs) were the spectacular paper bark/teatree gums which dated back to prior Captain Cook days (1770) and are over 200 years old - unbelievable and so beautiful. The resorts are built around the trees with our accommodation having two glorious trees growing up the middle of it.

Well here we all are at Kay's Fabrics Cairns for the Far North Queensland Machine Embroidery and Quilting Retreat.

To the left is Lizzy Allen, our Jenny Haskins' Accredited Tutor in Australia, who promotes our products and teaches classes, as well as working all the major shows. She joined us on stage as well as teaching classes. We always have a great time together.

On the right are Simon, Kay, Me and Sandra (Kay's daughter) - Sandra being the MD of Kay's Fabrics. This photo was taken after the 'show' (Simon and my presentation) was over and we all heaved a sigh of relief. With over 150 attendees at the week-end of demonstrations and presentations, it is safe to say it was a wonderful success.

There were were many hours of prior preparation and planning for this machine embroidery and quilting event, with Sandra and Kay's family, friends and customers volunteering to help; the end result was amazing and worth all the effort.

Simon and I were made to feel right at home by Kay, Sandra and their family (especially Kay's girls, who both have dibs on the dress I am wearing in the photos). Creative machine artists,who attended, travelled from as far afield as Newcastle, NSW, Darwin NT, northern Queensland towns as well as from Cairns (and the out lying areas). We all had a ball!

By the way the glorious dress that I am wearing was decorated by Ruth Osborn, a friend and magic artist from Queensland. I commissioned her to decorate this skirt and top (which were given to me) and she amazingly transformed a size 20 skirt into a size 8 and created my Titania queen of the fairies dress. Thank you Ruth, I do feel like a fairy queen when I wear it and it fits perfectly. The Titania dress will be featured in our up coming book When Dreams Flower.

Congratulations Sandra, Kay and families - you did a fabulous job and we loved being part of it.

Today is Melbourne cup day in Australia and tomorrow I will tell you about our day.

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