Sunday, 19 May 2019

Birds, Most Wanted List Continued, Hubby's Latest Toy

Hubby with his Ryker.  He's loving it and it has taken a load of worry off my mind. I now notice them on the road; many more than I would have thought.  I guess with the population aging and bikers wanting to bike no matter the age, it makes sense these rigs become more popular.

My hand stitching time lately was devoted to cross stitch and I made reasonable progress on the Cornwall Cottage Sampler.  I worked on that feathery kind of green border which you might miss altogether if not pointed out.

Repetitious and not that interesting to stitch but I got it done. Everything lined up, whew! And this month I will concentrate on finishing the basket.
I am so happy to link up with my fellow stitchers at the international SAL hosted by Avis at Sewing Beside the Sea. It has provided just the incentive I needed to get this project finished.  And I'm finding it fascinating to see what these folks are creating with their cloth and threads.
AvisClaireGunCaroleSueConstanzeDebbieroseChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHelenLindaHeidiJackieSunnyHayleyMeganCatherineDeborahConnieClare, Mary MargaretReneeJennyCarmelaJocelynSharon

Quick question...can needlepoint designs be used for cross stitch?
 I started my stitching journey decades ago with needlepoint and hope to return to it when my eyes start to have issues with counting. I was given this gorgeous book by the wonderful needlepoint artist, Beth Russell. Inspired by William Morris.
There is this pattern I would be interested in working.  So please let me know if you think this is possible.

Most Wanted List-continued

French General Fleur de Noel fabricImage result for french general fleur de noel fabric

Blackbird Designs Wild Orchid fabric. Some say this is gone forever.  Please say that isn't true! It was so popular!

Image result for blackbird designs orchid
Perky Pet Oriole Jelly Wildlife feeder. Kind Collette at What About Rheema?  sent me this link on Amazon to check them out.

I got no photos of orioles at the farm but was thrilled to spy one just a couple of times. I've yet to see one here but know they are around. So I would love to attract them.
Here is one of the rose breasted grosbeaks taken back in 2015 at the farm with my little point and shoot camera. It was thrilling to watch him at the feeder and he grew comfortable with other birds like the mourning dove being very close by.

I have a hankering for something baked...think I will make a cake today, the old fashioned way baked in the oven! (Definitely not going to be using my bread machine again for cakes).

Hope all is right with your world today!
Linking this post with Kathy's Quilts  and Viewing Nature With Eileen.

Thursday, 16 May 2019

Most Wanted List and Mother's Day Outing

Who knew?!
I had no idea my way of devoting a container to each of my projects was a thing called boxing. I came across it on Ann Wood's Blog and realized that is what I am doing and it is a way of lessening anxiety about having more than one project on the go at a time.  I would definitely fit that category of stressing about it. 
 Here is what Twyla (love saying that name!) Tharp in her book The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It For the Rest of Your LIfe  has to say about boxing...
“The box makes me feel organized, that I have my act together even when I don’t know where I’m going yet. It also represents a committment. The simple act of writing a project name on a box means that I’ve started work”
I found that interesting. 

 I actually felt overwhelmed in the sewing room one day last week. I got very down on myself about my lack of finishes to show for the time invested. Normally that aspect of the process doesn't bother me. In the end I questioned whether I should be looking at some of the pro type blogs where those talented folks have, if not two, then always one finish every single post. 
 But the upshot of that little bout had a positive outcome- it spurred me to look through my unfinished shelf. I pulled out these little applique blocks I made in 2016 and never sewed into anything useful . 

 They are designs from this book, Inspired By Tradition by Kay Mackenzie.

 I experimented with fusible applique and enjoyed  hand stitching a blanket stitch around them at the time. ( But decided in the end that I prefer using freezer paper overall for applique.)
  I squared them and sewed them together in an effort solely to make myself feel better.  To feel like I was accomplishing something.  A summer runner for the sofa table.
Having a complete rethink of that yellow and blue border ...too much/too busy.  What do you think? Now looking at these more subdued/neutral type fabrics.  Decision making, duh!

On a more satisying note, I got out and about in the local town recently.
I had a lovely day at the spa for Mother's Day. Younger daughter and I had facials, pedicures, drank mimosas and relaxed.  I'm not one for a lot of fooling with me from other people but I have to admit I loved every minute.  It is also enjoyable to know such a facility exists ten minutes from the house in the little nearby town, so we promised ourselves to go more often. 
Image result for mahogany spa carleton place
We also visited the very well stocked Granary where all manner of health food, baked goods and grooming items  are available.

                                                  Image result for granary carleton place
Where I bought this, Vegenaise surprised to know it is available locally. It is quite tasty.
 And ended the day with excellent Indian food from another local spot, Sagar Indian Cuisine, which I'm so happy to support. The naan bread too was a real treat.
Nice to know shopping, eating out and entertainment is on our door step; we don't have to go into Ottawa for it which is a good thing as we get older.
What's on your want list?  
I want to join this group on Facebook... the Twinkle Twinkle Challenge- Het Klossie with Marijke Tabak. You might remember the Lily Challenge from last year. This year she has designed a star block also to be made with scraps and is free for members. 
cover photo, No photo description available.
I need to settle on which kind of frame or holder I want to buy for my stitchery projects.  The hoops I use are hard on the material and also hurt my left hand to hold for any length of time. I've looked at lap stands but they are pricey; lately I've been eyeing this one. It receives wonderful reviews so I think this is the one I'll go with. Q-Snap Needlework frame which gets a consistent 5 stars from stitchers on Amazon.

This list is to be continued. 
Meanwhile, everything is rosy in our garden...well not literally (will be a while yet before we see roses!) but figuratively for sure.
Hope for you all too!
Check out lots of positive/thankful Thursday things at Not Afraid of Color and It's A Small Town Life. Also linking with Sew Fresh QuiltsThe Inquiring Quilter, Quilting is More Fun Than HouseworkLife in Pieces and Busy Hands Quilts.

Sunday, 12 May 2019

Tulips in Cloth for Spring

Mother's Love

Happy Mother's Day to all celebrating! There is no doubt becoming a mother is one of the great enterprises of life.  And if all works out, a lifelong journey at that.
I really liked this little poster that a friend circulated on Facebook.

No photo description available.

Wearing his summer coat, here is the rabbit we think overwintered in the backyard. We see this fellow sometimes on the trail closest to the house.  I took this photo from a great distance and you can see he is lifting his nose and getting a smell-perhaps me. He immediately turned and hopped away.
And here is little chipmunk, the only one around this spring. I was happy to watch him popping in and out of the wood stick home I piled up over two autumns. I knew it was being used as I saw various tiny tracks in the snow sometimes throughout the winter.

When I return from my Mother's Day outing, I hope to continue appliquing flowers onto the string blocks. The latest template, a sort of tulip for spring. On a bit of a roll and I would like to keep the momentum going.

Hope you have the momentum rolling today too.
Happily  linking with Kathy's Quilts and Viewing Nature with Eileen,.

Thursday, 9 May 2019

Spring Things, Free Patterns, Kindness Counts

I grew up with the saying" it's bad to be poor but it's worse to be sore." Feeling grateful this week, yes! I had my annual check up recently, with a couple of tests I've never had before and they turned out normal. Always a relief when that happens at any age but especially at mine. I never take good health for granted, not for one minute.

A flowering is happening! The trout lilies, first woodland flower of spring, are finally putting on a show.
I made what I call a "cooked dinner" for Hubby recently...a pork roast, cauliflower with cheese, green beans, homemade applesauce and this dish there on the left.  At home in Newfoundland, this is served with gravy. Mom made many different meals where her biscuit topping would be used.  People call it different names- a crust or a paste. It is really a basic biscuit and I used to put it on top of whatever meat I was cooking.  Now I use a casserole dish to bake it.  It's good leftover with a little butter and jam too, if you forget about the carbs.
There are numerous variations but this is the recipe I use...

My head got turned by this Springtime celebration fabric... called Spring Awakens For Henry Glass by Debi Hron. At Debi's site you can see how gorgeous and sweet her designs are, as well as download a free pattern using this line. The colours are so vibrant and the owls are adorable.

Another springtime event. The very unlikely places robins choose for their nests. Like this one at daughter's house right on the wall by their front walkway next to the garage.  She flies off when someone walks by which is a lot when they are home.  
But she has stayed to lay her eggs with all of us marveling at that wonderful shade of blue.
My little wall of photograph blocks is growing. Today I'm going to start stitching these into larger blocks. I find that easier to work with than long strings.  So far I've used only scraps for these so I'll see how big a piece I can make before deciding if I want to dip into my stash...and if I like it enough for that.

Jacquelynne Steeves has released her latest free BOM project.  She led a popular one last year called Save the Bees which are still in need of saving, sadly.  This year's project is called Happy Little Things.  The link is here for the sign up.

Members of yet another of my online facebook groups got into a real fuss and the administrators had to step in and shut down some of the commentary. I'm really surprised and disappointed that someone posing an innocent question can somehow make people turn on each other with unkind words, on a stitching forum of all places, nothing to do with hot topics or anything. Yikes! 

I believe this....
                                      Image result for unexpected kindness is the most powerful
We all know how good it feels when someone is kind to us even with the smallest gesture or word.
I hope there is only kindness and light and laughter in your day.
(Sorry the font sizes changed during this post; one browser shut down on me and I had to finish in another.)
Happy to be linking with Not Afraid of Color, It's A Small Town Life, The Needle and Thread Network, Sew Fresh Quilts, The Inquiring Quilter, Esther's Quilt Blog Creations-Quilts, Art and Whatever and Paying Ready Attention

Sunday, 5 May 2019

Bird Ring, OMG, Not So Merry May

Hubby is down in the basement carpentering, as I call it.
He has set up a small labyrinth of pathways lined with various work benches and tool chests for he is a man who has sets of tools out in the garages and more here for indoor work and it is inconvenient to be walking in and out just to pick up a tool.
 I don't say a word about that or when he has a sudden need to get to Canadian Tire to look for a certain wrench or something...My own little haven aka the sewing room is getting increasingly fuller though no where reaching a 60 odd year collection like his. (Part of which he is quick to point out he inherited from his dad.)
There are benefits to his tinkering away; he's presently fixing the kitchen faucet that went on the blink suddenly last month.  Before that it was the shower head he had to disassemble and fix. We must be hard on faucets. He always has a lineup of small projects to keep him busy which is a good thing.

With all the rain and cold temperatures, the landscape here went rather quiet.  Even the frogs in the pond stopped croaking. I went looking but couldn't find any pussy willows opened yet. May is off to a soggy slow start. But today, a sunny Sunday, is bound to get spring back on track.

Here are a few of the birds around the feeder lately. We continue to be puzzled by the lone female turkey. She has been wandering our property for a couple of years now; I wonder what did she do to get banished from the flock.

What do you think of my new ring?
  My bird ring I call it. At Sundance catalogue it is called Lovebirds ring and they have carried it for years and as long as that I've admired it.  Finally ordered it and it is just as nice as I thought it would be.  Well made and very comfortable.
Not a good photo so here is a better one from the net but it is much shinier than this picture too.

Image result for sundance bird ring
I'm loving these little appliqued baskets; making them is a little addictive. I think I will set getting 20 of these finished this month as my May OMG at Elm Street Quilts.
The colours in the Sweet Pea CAL are so pretty to crochet with that it is a pleasure to work and is growing quickly. Almost making up for the lack of colour outdoors.  Btw, I love to see your photos of the blooms and greenery in your gardens.  It is so interesting to see what grows around the world.

Someone asked about the wool and pattern...
 This is Stylecraft Special Dk, wool you can wash which is essential for an afghan. Love some of the colour names- Pistachio, Wisteria, Meadow, Blush, Candy Floss. This is Lucy's free pattern found at her blog Attic 24 called Trellis Stripe. 
Lucy has started another project, the Dune Blanket and I am drawn to what she is calling the Colourwash version. Does it appeal to you too?

 Design Wall May 4th, 2019
Hope the sun is shining but not scalding and the birds are tweeting wherever you are!
Linking this post with Kathy's QuiltsSmall Quilts and Doll Quilts, Cooking Up QuiltsViewing Nature With Eileen, Em's Scrapbag,  I'd Rather B BirdinQuilting is More Fun Than Housework and Letting Go of the Bay Leaf.