Thursday, May 27, 2010


Here they are at age 5 days. Don't they look like hairy worms? The inside of those beaks are bright orange - maybe that's for a reason, like so momma can see they're hungry? I don't know, but they are growing fast for just 5 days. This nest is just too easy. I don't even need to stand on tiptoes.
So where's the quilting? In a basket on the floor. I finally cleaned up my piles of projects and put them away for the holiday weekend and visiting grandchildren. It's hard to find the time when we have about an hour and a half of evening time. Yard, house, laundry, groceries, it's hard to find time to stitch. This weekend is a holiday weekend and it's Patient Husband's birthday so the kids are coming and we'll have a house full. I can't wait.
Next weekend the staff from school is coming for the End of the Year Party. An annual event for 13 years. We have about 30 people - give or take - and I do all of the cooking. They come, relax, walk the beach, eat, drink and exhale. It's amazing fun.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

black and white again!

OK, today I got it right. I was putzing in the yard last night and found this bee in nirvana in my rugosa rose hedge.

This is what it looked like for real. That bee didn't even flinch. If I didn't watch it land I would have thought it was dead.

Day 3 for the baby robins. They're growing fast! They were just hatched Saturday and I took this Monday evening. I wonder if Mama Robin feels the same way we do when we watch our babies grow? Soon these guys will be waving goodbye at the curb, car packed for college.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Black and White! and baby birds

I was searching and searching for something black and white for this week's Snappyfriends challenge. And then I walked in the front door! This is my front door, and it smiles at me everytime I go in.

Directly to your left there is a wreath made out of twigs that houses a robin and her family every single year. I couldn't decide if it was the same robin because I didn't know till a couple of weeks ago that robins can live 14 years. For a few years I thought it was the same one because she wasn't afraid of Patient Husband and I. We could walk right up to her and she'd tell us everything was fine. But this is about the third year for this Mrs. Robin and she is very skittish. We now knock on the door as we LEAVE so she will fly off but not be startled. This brood is very close to being ready to go.

I DO clean the mud off the house when she leaves.

Now THIS nest is right next to the other door, the door we use constantly. This mother is skittish, too, and I remind her everytime I leave or come in that "We TOLD you this wasn't a good place, but did you listen? " And SHE comes back every year, too. Her babies just hatched Saturday morning. I got this picture before #3 was even out of the egg. Mother wasn't very happy with my photo session but my nifty new camera has a swivel screen and I could stand further away than usual. She scolded me loudly, though, for even being on the porch.

Blogger Quilt Festival

This is my entry in the Blogger Quilt Festival. (I'm going to try very hard to figure out how to actually post it on the Blogger Quilt Festival. I'm new to this and can't figure it out. If anyone can help me before Friday, please do!!) I made this quilt top years and years ago and it sat in a drawer till last summer when I realized I really love it and would make it my project to finish it last summer. The center fabrics are from France or Montreal. I loved the colors of Provence and brought back some small pieces. In Montreal a very nice man in a shop selling napkins and tablecloths let me sift through his trash for bits and pieces! This isn't quilting fabric and since I work by hand it was not an easy go. I broke so many needles I lost count, but it's finished and I love it. I carry it around the house with me, I sleep under it at night. It reminds me of a very beautiful part of the world.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I triumph!

Well, here she is, Christine in all her glory, pinned into submission finally. She's smooth and ready to put on the frame. As I was pinning her tight the teachers passing my room had lots of "ooooohhh" comments on her colors. The details will come in the quilting (I HOPE - unless she rears her stubborn head again.) Until then, I'm walking around with my arms high in the air in a "Rocky makes it to the top" salute.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Shadows and paella and Provence quilt


Shadows! for Snappyfriends this week.

When we were in Florida last November I took a picture of my shadow and the pier reflected on the water. I thought it was pretty nifty!

We had the third wonderful weekend in a row! What are the odds? May is turning out to be beautiful in so many ways. The first weekend we were visiting my son and daughter-in-law and our Charlie. They live three hours from us so it's not as easy to be together. That was weekend #1.

Weekend #2, last weekend, Mother's Day was postponed with our daughter because the girls had colds. It allowed Patient Husband and I to have a very rare weekend at home with house chores and yard work. While that sounds too much like work, it did allow for a couple of very long naps. You know, the kind of nap where you have to put your tongue back in your mouth and wipe the drool off your cheek when you wake up. Dinners with friends and even if it did rain like crazy on Saturday it was just about perfect. Did I quilt? No. Was it a good chance for quilting? Yes. But the nap was just too necessary.

Weekend #3. Yesterday. Mother's Day revisited. My daughter, son -in-law and the girls came for the day. The weather was absolutely made to order for a day in the yard and a paella.


Adelaide thinks the leaves on the trees are pretty interesting

Elizabeth is exploring the "woods" - the scrub brush. She's very outdoorsy. She hikes and collects things on her walks. Feathers, rocks, bark, seeds, black walnuts.

I'm going to enter this quilt in the Blogger's Quilt Festival next week. I pieced it completely by hand and then it sat in a drawer for years. Years. I pulled it out last summer and it was my get-it-done project for the summer. Hand quilted. I love it. It's my blanky. I carry it around the house with me, my Provence quilt.

Many of the fabrics I brought home from France with me, some I bought home from Montreal where a shop keeper was making tablecloths and napkins and let me dig through his scrap pile!

The whites are the only 'quilting' fabric in the lot - except for the outside yellow, and so quilting it was VERY difficult. I broke so many needles I lost count.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Something old

Snappyfriends this week is looking for something old. I had a good think on that one. My son-in-law, being a geologist, has several fossils lying about the house but I forgot to take a picture when I saw them Friday. I asked my Patient Husband if he would let me post HIS picture and he said, "no." Then Sunday I noticed these lovely dessicated bananas lying on the counter and voila! Something old!

They did give themselves up to a batch of banana bread shortly after the picture was taken. It was about time!
Yesterday was Mother's Day. After most of the day of putzing about the house and yard, tackling small jobs, I gave myself the rest of the late afternoon and evening to tackle the quilt for granddaugher #3, the one that's giving me slight design problems that Friend Marilyn helped me sort out last week. I managed to get ALL of the hollyhocks sewn on, a large part of the design, and can now "see" what's happening and going to happen. I like to take an idea and turn it into a quilt but sometimes my mathematical proportions aren't right. I have never been nor never will be mathematical so sometimes I need "proportional" help. It's good to have a friend who can see what I can't.

Friday, May 7, 2010

still wrestling

I'm still wrestling with the quilt I'm going to make for granddaughter #3, due in August. It's the Sunbonnet Sue from a couple of posts ago. I had friend Marilyn take a look, fresh eyes, new perspective, and she helped tame me down and bring it into focus. But it's been such nice weather this week I've been spreading mulch and pulling weeds and digging up roses and moving them from here to there and then finding other things to move into the here spot. It's too nice to be inside and things need to be pruned, tended and spruced.

This is part of my front yard. Lavender, lavender, lavender. The bees love it! But so does this one particular weed. I go to and from the mailbox bent over, pulling as I go.

I always have such grandiose ideas for the yard and Patient Husband tries to accommodate me but he said no to the chicken coop and the barn ( I pester him with "I want a barn. Can I have a barn? I want a barn.") but he said yes to the wood burning pizza oven so what am I complaining about? Today I sent an email to him with my latest request/project. Maybe, maybe not. I'm thinking maybe! If it works, I'll show and tell later.

Our principal had a masseuse come to school yesterday to give a hand massage to anyone who wanted it. I'm so arthritic I thought it was a good thing so I signed up for a 15 minute session. And at first it DID feel good but oh, my goodness, after an hour I was in so much pain I could have screamed. She found and massaged every painful joint and connective tissue in my hands and kneaded and kneaded them - irritating and irritating them. I could hardly hold onto the steering wheel for the HOUR drive home. I was breathing through gritted teeth. Went home, dove for the couch wrapped in a quilt and fell asleep. I could hardly lift a thing all night. No more massages for me!

Monday, May 3, 2010

It's not easy being green!

I was having a really hard time coming up with something green for this week's challenge with Snappyfriends because right now every single thing is brilliant green in all shades green can come in. Do you want to see the grass? A tree? A stem? It's all just as green as green is. Then, on the way home yesterday we drove by this piece of land less than a half mile from our house. Every day I pass this place and every day I turn my head to look at it. It's such a beautiful piece of land, it's magical. Just beyond the picture on the right hand is Lake Michigan in all its glory. This property is for sale and if I had $3 million dollars I'd buy it. In a red hot minute. But I don't have $3 million dollars (I repeated that in case you thought it was a typo) so I can only drive by, sigh, and hope someone who does have that kind of money will be kind to this land. So, here's my green for the week.