Thursday, June 28, 2012

A Sunrise and Lavender Memories

I started sewing very early this morning.  I couldn't sleep so I thought I would make good use of my time.  I 'made' some fabric which I will turn into a lavender sachet.  I got the idea from Emily of emsscrapbag.  Em always seems to inspire me.  I loved her little sachets and thought I should have some too.    Mine (this is the first of several more I plan to make) is not finished yet because I still have to dry my lavender.  I will cut it this morning and hang it up in the shed to dry.  Does anyone know if that is what I should do with it and how long it will take to dry?

As I was sewing I looked out the window and saw a spectacular sunrise.  I hope it doesn't mean that we will have bad weather today.  "Red in morning, Sailors take warning."

This is what the sky looked like a few minutes later.

And a few more minutes after that.

I kept on sewing my little scraps together as I remembered lavender sachets of times long past.  I used to love going to the CNE Canadian National Exhibition, which is held in Toronto at the end of August every year.  They had lavender sellers in almost every building.  Their cute little wooden stands were made to look like carts with wheels and a canopy.  Bunches and sachets of lavender were hanging from it.  The wonderful scent of lavender would greet us as we entered the buildings.  I don't think we had much money at the time because we never bought any, but we were usually given a few lavender buds as samples.  I would collect a few flowers at each stand and put them in my pocket to sniff all day long.  (That's the closest I ever got to sniffing anything.)  Oh what lovely memories.  My DD used to love to collect those little buds as much as I did.  I think I will make her a sachet for her very own.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A Finished Mug Rug

Lots of projects on the go, but nothing done.  It's depressing - very depressing.  So yesterday I thought I would 'make' some fabric which I then turned into a mug rug.  Not terribly big, about 8 1/2 by 7 1/2.  But at least it's finished.

Maybe now I can move onto something in my UFO bin.   My first patch of phlox is in bloom.  There is a lot more of this around, but so far this is all that has bloomed.

I took this photo yesterday when the sun was shining.  Today it is kind of dark and overcast.  I hope we get some rain, otherwise I will have to go out and water.  

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Tuesday Blues - Flowers That is.

I have nothing to show you fabric-wise.  Almost no sewing has been going on here.  It is summer and I am enjoying the wonderful weather we have had in the past couple of days.  Last week it was hot, but this week the weather is just perfect.

So I thought I would show you some more plants in my garden.  Blue ones for today because that is what seems to be the dominant colour this week.

These are my Delphiniums.  I love these!  Blue is my favourite flower colour!

This is Lavender.  I have several clumps of it all around the garden.  This is my smallest plant, but easiest to photograph because it is near the front of one of the raised beds.  The smell is wonderful!

This is Lamium.  There are two plants growing close together.  One is a sort of bluish-pink.  The leaves are green with a light stripe down the centre.  The other is a fuchsia colour and the leaves are white with a green edge around them.  I rescued these plants from a shady area where they were being choked to death.  That was last year.  They are dong so well, I think I will divide them and transplant them next spring..  

This blue flower is Angelonia, specifically Angel Face Blue.  It is an annual in our climate.  But I love this blue colour so much that I buy it each spring and plant it in my garden. 

I also have a plant in a pot by the west side of the house.  This is to keep the gate from hitting the casement window when it is open.

This is Lobelia, another annual.  I had these two plants left over after I planted some pots and hanging baskets.  I just stuck them into the soil in the raised bed.  I am hoping they will start to grow soon and cover this area of my garden in a wonderful blue colour.

These wave Petunias are also annuals.  I just couldn't resist this dark blue colour.  Just had to have them.  They are mostly planted in hanging baskets and pots.

Hope you have enjoyed my blue flowers.  These plants have certainly inspired me.  I think I will go to my sewing room and create something.  Or maybe do some hand sewing out in the backyard in this fantastic summer weather.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Colour in My Garden

I have been a bit absent last week.  I had a strange summer cold.  Nothing to really complain about, but I was listless and tired and didn't have the energy to even read blogs.  I didn't get much sewing done either.  But I did manage to put my strippy quilt together.  I just have an outer border to still sew on.  The reason I haven't done that yet is because I want to make the border as wide as possible without running out of fabric.   That will take some brain power.  I seem to be a bit low on that at the moment.  I bought that navy fabric at the store that went out of business, so there is no more of it.

I have been sitting in my garden a lot this past week, mostly reading or drinking tea or cold drinks.  There is a lot of colour out there right now.  I will feature the yellows today.  They look so hot and summery.  We are in the middle of a heatwave.  This is the earliest we have had one in many years.  A heatwave is at least three days of above 32C weather.  And I think the overnight low has to be at least 20C too.  The humidex makes it feel even hotter - more like 40C.  So needless to say, it is hot, hot, hot!  We are also supposed to get some pop up thunder showers this afternoon.  I hope they hold off.  I have been invited to a volunteer tea at my DD's school.  I will have to ride my scooter over there.  I am praying for no rain!

Here are my yellow flowers.

Evening Primrose

Yellow Lilies

Tuberous Begonias

Monday, June 11, 2012

Spending Time Outdoors

Since I have joined the 30x30 Challenge I guess I should tell you what I have been doing.  This past weekend I spend a great deal of time out in my garden.  Yesterday it was more like the whole day.  I pulled weeds and transplanted a couple of things that had gotten lost amongst other plants - invasive plants.  I have a lot of those.  They were planted without my knowing what exactly they were and how they reproduced.

But it is not all bad.  Here is a shot of Lysimachia nummularia "Aurea".  It is commonly called 'Creeping Jenny".  I planted it several years ago in a pot because it has a wonderful creeping habit and a lime green colour that I love,  Every year some of it survives the winter.  This year, because we had almost no winter to speak of, it is growing like, well, creeping jenny.  And to top it off, it is producing tiny bright yellow blossoms.

So after digging and planting all weekend, I decided that today would be my day of rest.  So I took my book outside and made myself comfortable in the shade.  No sooner had I started to read when a flock of Goldfinches came by.  They were after the seeds I had hung in the apple tree.  I love those little birds.  I love the way they fly in a sort of dance through the sky.  I love the way they chirp to let their arrival known.  And I love the way they hang off the 'thistle sock' to enjoy the seeds.

I have my air conditioner on and it is cooler inside than it is outside.  So I think I will come in and do a bit of sewing.

Saturday, June 09, 2012

What I've Been Up To

I spent a great deal of time in my garden yesterday.  It seems like the more I do out there, the more there is to do.  I found some gorgeous peonies growing in the back of the garden where they were hardly seen.  So I cut a few and stuck them in a vase.  They are on my kitchen table and they smell delicious.

We have had a bit of rain over the past week and that has given me some quilting time.  I am working on this quilt today - the sun is starting to come out so I may have to leave the quilt and go outside.

If I do stay inside and sew, I will be putting the strips in between the long zigzag blocks.  I have no idea how big this quilt will be.  I am just playing with it as I work on it.  Mimi is helping me.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Knitting - Crochet Thursday

I spent another lunch hour with my DD's knitting club.  Most of them already knew how to knit and/or crochet, so this is not a difficult task for me.  They are very good at what they do!  One of the girls had made a lovely crocheted hairband with a crocheted flower on it.  I am sorry that I did not get a photo of it.  I did get a photo of one of the students who made a little amigurumi bear.  I did not teach her how to do this, so I can't take any credit.  I just showed her my little bears and she did her own thing.  Cute isn't it?:

I also joined up with the David Suzuki 30x30 Challenge.  It started on the first of June, but I missed a few days of it.  Today I added a couple of photos to the 30x30 Challenge Flickr Group. I love nature and being in the out of doors, so this is not much of a challenge for me.   I will try to post a photo each day on the Flickr Group.  This is a miniature rose that I have had for at least 6 years.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

A Post by Mimi

Meow!  I just got to tell you about this cat!  Hi everybody.  A few days ago I woke up and picked up some strange smells in our garden.  It was a cat, sitting very still.  I almost didn't see him, but there he was.  Meow!  Sitting on our bird bath.  I started pacing around and making crazy cat sounds that alerted my owner.  She saw him too.  She grabbed her camera and took a picture.  I told her to take it through the window because I thought he would be frightened off if she opened the back door.  The picture is not very clear, but you get the idea.

He jumped down when my owner went outside.  He didn't catch a bird, which is a good thing, because I am not allowed to do that and he shouldn't be either.

I am always on the look out now for stray cats and other strangers in my yard.  It's a big job and sometimes I have to pretend to be napping when really I am watching everything.   Like in this picture.  I am playing hide and seek.  Do you like my owner's quilt?  She has been busy for over a week now, sewing and cutting and ironing and sewing some more.  I think it will be done soon, but I hope not.  I like napping on the pieces.  Meow!  Bye for now.  Love, Mimi

Friday, June 01, 2012

Clean up Day at Highland Creek

My DD's class participated in a waterfront clean up today.  I am not sure who the organizers of this month-long event were, but it was a wonderful opportunity to expand on their ecology studies.  They invited me to go with them.  I was able to ride my scooter because this is the park that is very close to my house.  In the morning the kids played in the playground.

They were having so much fun, that my DD just let them play.  They buried each other in the sand and climbed on the play equipment.  Some played soccer in the field.  The grade 4 class joined them.  To loud protests they finally agreed to stop playing and go and wash their hands so they could eat lunch.  Some of them actually said the weren't hungry and kept playing.

I had to laugh because I was starving.  Their lunches, by the way, were all in reusable containers, what they call 'litterless lunches' (no garbage to throw out to add to our landfill)..  My lunch was a litterless one too.  They have me trained.

When lunch was over, my DD handed out plastic garbage bags, gloves and some tongs she had bought at the dollar store for picking up small objects.  The kids started collecting stuff right away.  They were so eager.  We walked over to a path that led down to the water.  The creek is very low this year.  We have not hat much rain.

From the top of the bluffs where I sat on my scooter, I could not see much garbage, but I was surprised when they returned to the top of the hill with their bags, bulging with everything from cigarette butts to coffee cups, cans and even a fire extinguisher.

My DD is the one on the left in the gray t-shirt. 

They went on to collect more garbage at another site along the creek, but I didn't stay any longer.  I was getting sore from sitting on my scooter the whole time.  (The park benches all had 'caution, wet paint' signs on them and I was not able to walk on the uneven ground.  And I was tired.  My DD phoned me tonight and told me that it had been a very productive day.  Her class is becoming more and more ecologically aware.  They have become ambassadors and spokes persons for saving our environment.

And it certainly is worth saving.  I will leave you with a shot of some phlox, blooming by the side of the path.  It was a breathtaking sight.  And speaking of breathtaking, the air was delicately perfumed with the scent of these lovely flowers.