Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Projects, Large and Small

Well, it seems I have gone from fabric-purchase to quilt-start in near-record time. Over the weekend I decided on a design for Amy's big-girl-bed quilt and cut up all 16 fat quarters of the Colors. I stayed up way too late on Sunday night laying them all out, with Juliett giving her input whenever she felt necessary. I'm very pleased with how this project is shaping up so far. This will be the biggest quilt I've ever attempted, but the pieces are fairly large so I don't think it will take much longer to piece than average. However, with feline help it always takes a bit longer...

Amy and I took a quick field trip to Joann Fabrics on Monday because I had coupons and not a whole lot else to do on that particular morning. Came away with a few much-needed notions as well as two very cuddly pieces of... fleece? fur? furry fleece? Anyway, some very soft and very discounted items from the remnants pile. One of which I have already(!) whipped up into a quick little blanket for Amy to snuggle with. I could not resist this fabric simply for its cozy, furry, GREEN-ness. It really doesn't match anything Amy already has, nor would it necessarily be a color I would pick if choosing from a whole rainbow of fuzzy fabric. But it is very Amy. So now she has yet another pint-sized blanket.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

How the Garden Does Grow...

Amy and I just returned from a week away and as always I marvel at how much can grow and change in the garden in just a few days. I've been wanting to write about our garden for sometime so as long as the pictures cooperate this will be a bit of a catch-up, catch-all garden post.

This year's winner in the category "Surprise Success" goes to the sunflowers. Eight-foot-tall, gorgeous, dinner plate sunflowers that grew all the way from dropped bird seed. Of course the organic-heirloom-whatever sunflower seeds I paid $3.49 for did not even germinate, but these vigorous volunteers have been wowing us for weeks. One of the smaller ones, shown above, even got beat down in a rainstorm, and before I could right it it simply straightened up and continued growing, all the way to a sweet little flower. The three flowers in front of our window are the size of small trees, and now hang down with the weight of maturing seeds. Oh, and those are some canna lilies mixed in, too, which the hummingbirds seem to be enjoying.

Speaking of hummingbirds, I was shocked to discover a complete rampaging of my larger hummingbird feeder when we got home. The squirrels(?) removed all four of the plastic yellow flowers and gnawed a huge hole in the base! The nerve!

The morning glories have been doing nicely, despite an onslaught of Japanese beetles. I knocked a bunch into a cup of water today and last I checked they're still swimming around in there. I'm still not sure how I feel about that but at least they're off my plants.

And lastly, harvest: So far we've picked at least a dozen cherry tomatoes, three "golden jubilee" (I think that was the name) yellow tomatoes (so sweet!), and at least five cucumbers. Just getting warmed up - and this all from our postage-stamp backyard. Today I snipped off a wilting sunflower head and set it out for the birds. Now if that isn't some bird seed that was worth its weight in gold!

Thursday, July 2, 2009


So I HAD to have these fabrics after seeing them featured on this blog (Rebecca I'm holding you personally responsible!). They arrived today - not by the mail carrier, actually, but by a very kind lady who lives on a street of the same name as ours but in the next town over. Said she gets the wrong mail all the time. After realizing that this box contained my much-anticipated and drooled-over fabrics I really should have been even more grateful than I already was to this nice person who drove my package all the way across town.

These are gorgeous fabrics in person, though ever-so-slightly darker than I was expecting them to be. But I still think they will be just right to make Amy a quilt for her big-girl bed, and with any luck such a quilt will actually be finished and ready for use when she's ready to move out of the crib.

Amy helped me unfold all 16 fat quarters and when I laid them out on the couch she hopped right up and made herself comfortable: "Colors! Iss Pretty!!" After dinner she spotted the stack on the table and requested "Colors! Go See!" So I washed her hands and sent her into the living room to play with the "Colors" while I cleaned up. She returned shortly after with just one piece and danced all over the kitchen exclaiming "Iss Pretty! Iss Pretty!" I guess she likes them?

Now, any thoughts on what sort of pattern to use? Big blocks, little blocks, add other fabrics?? I don't have any good ideas yet and would love some input.