Gardening, Quilting, and a few more things

With all the posts I have this month set to be quilt alongs, Stashbusters, Safelight project, and more, Sundays are the only time to catch up on everything else. Go get another cuppa (of whatever your cup contains in the morning) and settle in for a long, chatty and picture heavy post. This warm weather is continuing to bring out the spring flowers early. This week, the Japanese cherry next to the meadow and the forest edge burst into bloom with beautiful pale pink flowers.

The tree is small, but stands out against the still winter scene of the forest. Behind it, the land slopes downward to the bottom of the cove, then up again over a hill.

Up close, the delicate flowers are lovely.

The Bradford pear is blooming too. It is on the bottom edge of the meadow, with the valley and mountain ridge beyond it making a lovely photo. The day was heavy overcast, and I hurried to get a nice picture before the clouds opened up and caught me in the meadow, far from the door to the house.

I noticed a small peach tree struggling to flower in the shady edge of the forest on the east side of the house. The one that used to give me peaches (that I’d have to race the bears to get first) was broken in a storm a few years ago. This one is finally grown tall enough to maybe have a peach or two this year.

Another stand of daffodils is blooming now, these with dark orange cups on lighter yellow petals.

I’m still taking pictures of the largest group of daffys, they continue to bloom beautifully.

These daffodils came out this week as well, with orange cups on white petals. There will be more of these soon.

The all white ones are still blooming, with a few past their peak now.

Somebody came by to beg for a meal.

Of course, he got one. I cannot resist the cuteness.

His buddy got one too. Hmmm, this one looks a bit hefty, could it be a pregnant she-squirrel?

The hyacinths brought out more flowers on the stalks, so pretty and they have such a heavenly fragrance.

On the mountainside, these ground cover violas are creating a carpet of green and purple.

Inside the Carolina room, the toad lilies have come up again. It is great to see these lovely perennials continue to be come up year after year. But I am not going to move them to the veranda until mid-April, until all danger of a late freeze is past.

The heartleaf brunnera is coming out now too. I was worried about it last fall, but it seems to be coming back. I’ll keep it where it is for now as well.

In the sewing room, this week I had a charity quilt to do for a friend. She was going to donate it to Safelight, so I was happy to do it.

I decided to quilt it in light blue thread, to blend nicely in both light and dark areas.

I used a pantograph called Fascination, long curves with two rows on one sheet so I can quilt more before advancing the quilt on the frame.

I knew when I got it that the batting was going to be tight. But I was sweating it out near the end. Seems that I did win the game of batting chicken, but just barely!

Listening to an audiobook, I was able to finish the quilting in one day. I don’t have anything in the piecing stage, so I worked on this with only a few breaks until it was done. I wanted to deliver it on Thursday when we had a meeting, and I would see my friend.

I like the pantograph as it adds some softening curves to an angular design.

March is National Quilting Month, and I have a special display of my work and my blog at our local library. These lobby display cases are available to local residents and groups to use by reservation, all you have to do is get in line. My display will be up for a month. It promotes the art of quilting, and also our guild’s National Quilting Day show at the library on March 18 from 10 am to 3 pm. If you are local, come see the show that Saturday and vote for your favorite quilt in our Challenge display in the Kaplan auditorium, across the hall from this case. The only light is at the top, so the bottom two shelves are a bit dark in the photo. I probably should have folded the quilt under instead of having the bottom lay over on the shelf. It isn’t quite this dark in real life.

Meanwhile in the kitchen, the dishwasher decided to take a break this week, of course with a full load of dirty dishes. My Sweet Babboo pulled out the bottom rack, and then read that he could do some diagnostic testing, but it would need to be empty. So, I washed all the upper rack glasses and containers by hand. Then while he did research on the internet, I washed the plates and flatware from the bottom rack. He ordered a part for it, then declared that we would eat off paper plates and limit cooking for the next week so as to minimize the hand washing. Well, isn’t he sweet. But no, I’m still going to cook. Two loaves of pumpkin bread were on the agenda, and they were baked.

The orchid flower that was developing succumbed to a condition known as bud blast. In researching this, I believe that insufficient water is the problem. Although I mist it every day and water it weekly, it apparently needs more than I’ve been doing. So I have a new water routine that involves soaking the bark once a week, and doing a flow watering every other day. This will keep the roots from sitting in water, but get the plant more moisture overall. We’ll see if that helps.

Coming this week, Oh My Strippy Stars continues with a tutorial on Tuesday, then we continue with Scrap Dance Quadrille on Friday. I’ll have an update on our Safelight project soon, as I have most of the items needed ordered and should be getting shipments this week. I’ll be working on both quilt alongs in my sewing time, playing a bit of pickleball, trying a new recipe, and hopefully stamping a few cards this week.

What are your plans for this week?

32 thoughts on “Gardening, Quilting, and a few more things

  1. charliedisante

    This week, I have the house to myself as hubby is taking himself to Disney. No, I am not going. Last time, we ran our legs off racing from one thing to the next. I am planning to finish some UFOs, maybe do some deep cleaning…nah, probably not. I will just have a little vacation of my own. I negected to mention that it is hubby’s 70th birthday and he was at the opning of Epcot.
    Keep up the blogging. I love feeling connected.

  2. Terri D'Ambrosio

    Going to the fabric store today. Need fabric for a baby quilt I am making for my neighbor.
    Thank you for the pictures this morning of your flowering trees and plants. I live in an apartment now but lived on a farm and had lots of flowers and fruit trees. I will be visiting
    the farm later this week and will check on the trees and see if they are getting ready to bloom, might still be a little early here in Delaware. I haven’t seen the squirrels that live in the trees outside my window. There was one that would sit on my window sill. I miss the wildlife that live on the farm. We had fox, a herd of deer, turkeys, and a blue heron that would come to the pond (inground pool) and try to catch the goldfish and koi.
    Enjoy your Sunday and thanks again for the pictures.

  3. Julie

    Phew, I’m exhausted following you around today, you were so busy. I predict a litter of little beggars on your welcome mat – they took the word literally. The Library display is lovely, the little rocking chair is a delightful touch. The peach blossom! It reminds me of my sister’s set of Desert Rose Franciscan Ware, I always thought they were peach blossoms, we didn’t live near the desert. I guess you shouldn’t use them for dining because of lead paint, but they sure are pretty.

  4. thatfabricfeelingcom

    Your flowers are looking so lovely, that quilt is beautiful and baking…that’s the reason I wish I had a cup of tea like you suggested. Thanks for catching us up on your world. I’m going to go check my bulbs to see if there’s any action here, doubt there is…but you’ve given me hope.

  5. Rheanna

    I love your blossom long tree pictures. I have been busy working on a quilt for a friend who has a recent cancer diagnosis. She will be starting chemo soon and I wanted to finish a quilt for her beforehand. I am also hoping to get caught up on quadrille before Friday. Praying for a productive week.

  6. I have a latte sitting here next to me – not as good as the shops but not bad for K-pod. Hope your dishwasher will be fixed soon for you but I know what you mean, cooking goes on and dishes for two isn’t really that hard to do it you do it off and on throughout the day ad not let them pile up too high. I wouldn’t like a peach tree blossoming this early I would be afraid a cold spell would come and hit it this early in March – good luck to it!

  7. Linda In UK

    I so enjoy your posts – always full of interest and excellent photos. Today’s was great. Such lovely blossom trees and the quilt looks looks great. You did a good job on the quilting – your friend must be delighted and the recipient even more so. Hope the dishwasher repair works out. Good luck for your quilting display, very exciting!

  8. What beautiful flowers. The center of the Japanese Cherry flower looks like a star to me. Delicate and lovely. This is my FIRST full week at home in a month and a half, and I need to get out to my sewing room, tally up my purchases from my New Mexico quilt shop adventure and add to my Stashbusters spreadsheet! March is full of family birthdays so we start today with the first celebration. The light blue thread was a perfect choice for the quilting!

  9. slmrn1

    Florida has begun the statewide quilting shop hop and on Tuesday we will venture out for our second hopping day. Wednesday is my second cataract surgery, so I won’t be doing much for a few days. Loved all the pics in this newsletter. The blossoms are beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

  10. lv2bquilting2

    Hello Carole. I just love seeing all the beautiful trees and flowers that are blooming already in your neck of the woods. We have some mini daffodils that are just pushing through the earth right now here, so appreciate today’s post very much, especially the Japanese Cherry with those lacy, delicate flowers.

  11. Here on the central coast of California Zone 8b, spring is on the door step. We already have an apple tree that bloomed…and promptly got hit with freezing temperatures and the jonquils are almost finished blooming with the daffodils just starting to bloom. We’ve been unusually cold for long stretches this winter with even a rare dusting of snow several days last week. I am frantically weeding in the flower garden in preparation for planting out a growing collection of new plants that have been “mysteriously” appearing on our porch waiting for our last frost, which is officially March 15. But looking at the ten day forecast, it looks like Wednesday the 8th is the last real frost. So hopefully this week I will get to do some planting.
    Tuesday is our 53rd wedding anniversary, so maybe we’ll do something special…I have no idea what. We have really become happy, but boring home bodies. 😄
    The lady who taught me to quilt 16 years ago is coming over on Thursday and Friday for me to return the favor and teach her to free motion quilt on my longarm machine and I have 6 or 7 tops of my own that need to be quilted It’s going to be a busy week.

  12. lois92346

    I’m amazed at your flowering trees! Nothing is blooming here (southern California) due to having a very cold (for us) winter thus far. We had a spectacular snow fall last Saturday. It snowed steadily for three hours. The neighborhood kids and dogs were out romping around in it. It made my heart sing!! I’ve lived here 49 years and this is only the third time it has snowed…last time being 2004. I had my apricot pruned by an arborist last month and it’s starting to produce flowers. He said I should have a good harvest this year.

  13. Seeing your pumpkin bread reminds me I have ingredients measured out — just had to add the pumpkin and finally bought a can. Maybe I’ll do that today, especially now that I have room in the freezer for the extra mini-loaves. Your flowering trees are absolutely stunning. What a welcome sign! Onward to a new week. Only one doc appointment, a massage and physical therapy. Maybe I’ll get some painting or sorting done!

  14. Diane D

    I love looking at all of your photos showing that spring is happening somewhere! We are still experiencing snow and temps in the 20’s to 30’s, which means there are still many days to enjoy indoor projects. I finished a table runner yesterday so now I plan to start working on the current mystery project.

  15. What is on my agenda for this week? Finish quilting one quilt (UFO), complete black and white checkerboard top, finish burp cloths for donation, get to the gym 2 to 3 times, walk daily and game day with some single gals on Saturday. I am sure there is more, but that is enough to start my week’s plans.

  16. Autumn down here in NZ. We are away from home, a surprise visit to older daughter as she celebrates her 60th birthday.Such a well kept family secret for many weeks. But this city and another not too far away might just offer some new shops to visit. Love your quilt and goodies display.And that swirly pantograph, perfect finish.

  17. Joan Sheppard

    You are really in high gear here! We have a similiar light box at our library and I will ask if I can show off some of our charity quilts before we take them in. Thanks! Appliances will get us everytime! Be aware – they talk to each other! Don’t let the others get any ideas! LOL The garden, the trees – gorgeous and great photography! Always enjoy the “wild life” photos. Thanks

  18. Such a lovely display of your work in the local library. Dishwasher woes, oh dear. Would you believe that we never had a dishwasher till we moved to this house several years ago.

  19. Elaine Nemeth

    Really like the hourglass quilt your friend made. Thank you for quilting it for her.
    Daffodils are such happy flowers.
    You always want to smile when they bloom
    On to the mystery. How many hst???lol

  20. It’s nice to see spring arriving at your place. That is a chubby squirrel. Hmmm. The quilting on the hourglass quilt finishes it up so nicely. Sorry about the dishwasher. I say a little prayer each time I turn mine on as it is so old right now. 😬

  21. Diann@ Little Penguin Quilts

    Such pretty blooming things at your house! I’m ready for spring, but Colorado isn’t there yet. Looking forward to seeing what’s next for the Scrap Dance project. I’m not sure what kind of sewing time I’ll get this week, but I can print out the next step and be ready when I can sew!

  22. Donna Flanery

    Love seeing your blooming tree and beautiful flower pictures. Makes me envious of anyone who has a green thumb. Seeing your pumpkin bread reminded me that I have some overripe bananas, so I think I’ll get up and go make me some banana nut bread. I have a churn dash quilt on the long arm all ready to start quilting on it tomorrow morning. It’s for a friend who was diagnosed with cancer, but who thankfully does not have to go through chemo. So this will just be something to celebrate the good news.

  23. So see flowers blooming! I really like that pantograph. I may need to buy that one. I tend to use the same 5 or 6 over and over. I hand wash about half my dishes anyway. I think the dishwasher is one appliance that I could live without.

  24. Marsha Wackerly

    I spy a pattern flaw in your quilt! Check out small squares at location 6-7 and 7-7. They should each be rotated 90 degrees. My friend tells me that gives the quilt personality!

  25. I loved seeing your blooms and plants. I have had the best amaryllis this year, 8 blooms on two stems, and huge blooms, too. We have had NO luck in keeping orchids alive after the first blooms fall off. Not one has survived. We are going to try one more, repotting it immediately with better bark from Home Depot and a little bigger pot. A friend in California, who grows the most beautiful orchids, gave us step-by-step instructions, but we still haven’t done it. If that doesn’t work, we’re done with orchids. LOL

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