Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Porch Time and Garden Progress

 The view from my laptop this morning . . . 

Chores are done and I now get some time to spend on the porch, blogging, listening to an audio book and whatever else I can come up with.


The last few weeks have been strictly garden focused. And it's starting to pay off. And not just from this year's efforts.

Slowly, but surely things are filling in. Some of the plants were transplanted two years ago when we moved. Others were generously shared from my sister and we'll start adding new perennials over the years to fill in the rest. 

I seem to have a real liking of purple flowers because there are a lot of them :) I was overjoyed to discover the pinkish lavender iris this morning and the brown one yesterday.

 More recently, I've been focused on getting the vegetable garden done. And I can finally say:  Goal accomplished !!!

I've been moving dirt for more than a week and Honey Do helped me finish over the weekend.

Tomatoes and corn

Herbs and lettuce

Strawberries gifted from a neighbor our first summer.

Peppers and all my seeds, beets, cucumbers, beans and gourds.


Peanuts, we found plants last year and kept the "seeds" to plant this year. It was high yielding, so we thought we'd try again this year.

Raised beds that include radishes, peas and lettuce, all from seed.
We extended the garden a bit to use up some dirt. In this section we put the celery, cabbages, kohlrabi and melons.

This is the "top" garden. It includes the seeds I planted, strawberries and some flowers that attract the pollinators. 

With the vegetable garden done, there's only the flower beds to clean up and that's underway. I'm working about an hour a day pulling weeds before it gets to warm. I'm hoping to have everything done by the end of the month and then that just leaves me with general maintenance and shopping for new plants :)

This also means I should be able to spend a little more time in the sewing room. My plan is to spend my evenings planning and prepping projects that I can take outside and work on the porch. So this will me hand projects . . . embroidery, binding, hand quilting, and cutting out pieces for applique. And of course, there is always reading a book.
So on that note, time to find something to work on :)



Thursday, May 18, 2023

It's Not All About Quilting !!



Unfortunately, it's not . . .


Almost two years ago, Honey Do and I purchased our first home together. It was a scary and exciting time. Our forever home (at least on this earth). This is where we will retire (I already have) and die here. Our goals are simple, take this time now and make the home for whoever is left as done and secure as possible so nothing major has to be fixed or replaced beyond normal maintenance. We the roof the first autumn. Next is replacing the boiler. Doors and windows seem to be okay for now. We may or may not do them in the future.


In the meantime, it's spring, middle of May. That means gardens and yard work have begun in full force. And there are lots of them. How many will remain is still under consideration. The front flower garden is huge and may need to be downsized at some point. They all need cleaned up from fall and winter.


The last couple of weeks has me focused on the vegetable garden. We've moved about four yards of soil. Honey Do did a wonderful job of building and installing some much needed supports.


We purchased leftover garden soil from the neighbor. He got more than he needed and we were in need of more and just hadn't ordered it yet. Perfect timing. So this bed has been filled. The only additions are the raised beds. This section was here last year, we are just adding the retaining wall to make it a little more user friendly.
Some planting has been done.
The lower bed has been tilled and planted. Marigolds around the perimeter, rows of corn an tomatoes fill the interior.

A couple more raised beds have lettuce and herbs.

The upper garden has a raised bed. There are some perennial herbs and pepper plants. In the foreground are some perennial flowers (lobelia, dwarf lavender). I have more soil order to fill the gaps in the upper garden. Then the rest of the plants we purchased can go in.

I'll work the remainder around the strawberry patch.
Spring florals were beautiful, too, unfortunately, they didn't last long enough. Although, the tulips lasted a really long time because the weather got cool and that helped.

Apple blossom



Peony Tree


An inventory of my garden told me that everything came back except on climbing rose bush. The butterfly bush I tried rooting took and is coming back very healthy. All the natives Sister and I planted have come back as well. The bees are very happy.
Honey Do's berries and grapes all survived the winter. They are one year old.
 Another small load of garden soil arrives tomorrow morning. That will be placed as quickly as I can, then plant the remaining vegetables and herbs. Weeding will continue next week and hopefully I'll have enough energy to get it done before Thursday. 

I started a new Bible study this week and they are on Thursday. It's a good way to end my week.

Perfect sunrise



Sunday, May 14, 2023

Scrap Happy - May 15, 2023

 Scrap Happy Report

May is dawning beautifully with warmer temperatures and lots of new growth and chores. Some mornings are still chilly, but you have to love the sun rises. As you can see, there's lots of cleaning up to do but the gardens are going in and this past few weeks has made the gardens the main priorities.
I miss being in the sewing room and am conflicted because it's been so nice outside the last few days all I want to do is be out in the sunshine.
I don't necessarily enjoy gardening as much as a lot of people do, but I do really enjoy the end results.
Unfortunately, there's not as much progress as I would have liked in the sewing room, but some is better than none.
First up, a sensory board. I've never made one. When I delivered it to the teacher, she said her students were thrilled and couldn't wait to use it.

Next, a project I've been wanting to do for a long time. The stitchery is one I purchased from Elelfantz quite a few years ago. It worked up very quickly. The wood frame box was made my Honey Do for this project. I am thrilled with how it turned out.


This next project was from a Facebook group I belong to. I didn't quite do it the way the original inspiration suggested, but took off on my own tangent.

I love how it turned out and it became a wall hanging. The 2.5 inch squares are leftovers from the baby quilts I've been working on and as as the backing and binding. It used up some older scraps.


Spring Bunny baby quilts.

There's a total of four of these quilt tops and all were done similarly, just a few changes here and there. All used scraps from my stash. The center panels were purchased years ago when I worked at JoAnn Fabrics. I made a pillow out of one but the rest just waited for their time to shine. Once I quilt them, two will go to two little girls that moved in next door as welcome gifts, the other two will become donations. I love how they turned out and enjoyed the time making them.

 Thank you Kate for hostessing. Contact Kate if you would like to join the group. It's a great way to use up scraps and have a place to share your progress.

You can find a list of the other participants at the link.

Monday, May 1, 2023

May Goals

 And we are off to a new month !! 

It's May . . . already !!

Here are my goals for May:


sandwich and quilt

2. Daisy Days BOM

Stitch "SunDaisy"

3. Hedge Hugs BOM

Assemble block, baby quilt top

4. Sister Time

Woolie Gnomes BOM


Bind three quilts for a friend

List is light this month, but that's not a bad thing. Leaves room for lots of additional projects.

Have a good week.

April 2023 - Goals and Accomplishments

 April Goals

These are the goals I had set up for April. As I said in a previous post, it was a month of disruptions and for me, distractions. So here are the goals and how I did.



No progress here, but it will be a priority for May.

2. Daisy Days - Block 6 DONE

3. Hedge Hugs - Block 4

No - Decided not to do this month.

4. SAHRR - Baby Quilt #6 DONE

I believe I made four of these in April. They are all basically the same design and I followed the round robin patterns. I love how these turned out. They will be quilted at a later date.


5. Sister Time - Gnome #7 DONE

This  is my favorite Woolie Gnome block in the series. We used beads for the berries on the holly and poinsettia. The reindeer's collar is actually leather and his body is made out of a "textured" fake fur I bought years ago and never used. We are very close to getting the blocks finished.


I participated in a stitch along with one of my Facebook Groups. It was quick and a lot of fun. 


It appears my month was more productive than I thought.

Have a good week.

Visitor coming . . .

 I have a much anticipated visitor coming !!!

Amongst all the normal daily activity, the weekend activities with Honey Do and Sister, I'm trying to get things ready and welcoming.


My visitor, Susan of Desert Sky Quilts.

This is our first visit in several years and we both feel the need and how much we have missed our in person time together. I'm the really lucky one, because I get the first visit of the year. That is a huge blessing for me.


 Some of my extra activity is cleaning up the sewing room. This is more because it's been needing it for quite some time and not as much about the visit. You know, things that you just put off doing or plan on doing and just never seem to get to. This has also been a really good time to deal with things that just need to leave and haven't. My tendency is to plan to deal with things by "finishing" projects, but there are always more accumulating. And space is at a premium, so putting things away is always a challenge for me. But I will continue to muddle forward. 

While I'm "cleaning" I will also be sewing. Here's what I'm working one . . .  

SAHRR - Spring Bunnies #3 and #4.
This panel goes in a different direction from the others. More vertical than horizontal. I also used blue instead of green for the outside border. And did you notice the checkerboard section is also incorporating multiple prints but still staying with the green, pink and blue prints. I love how they all turned out.

I also completed the next step of this slow stitching Facebook group project.

Susan arrived Thursday afternoon. No time had passed since our last visit. We started chatting immediately like it was just yesterday :)
We had several days together and the conversations never stopped. We sewed, stitched, visited. 

Honey Do took Friday off to play chauffeur for us.
Since we live in a new area since Susan's last visit, there were new shops to check out.

We live very close to "Amish Country" so that's where we headed :)


The weather was chilly all week, but that doesn't stop the Amish from drying their clothes outside.

One of my favorite fabric/quilt stores. We found so many wonderful fabrics for our Shoebox Swap later this year and I found some fabrics I need for a sensory board I volunteered to make.

More scenery as we headed to lunch.

Post Office

We find the best bulk foods around at The Ashery.

Amish Elementary School
The Amish Countryside

We spent time with my Sister on Saturday, sewing and stitching.

Unfortunately, the next few days just flew by and before I knew it, it was time to pack up Susan's car and she headed home. We can't wait to get together again. It was a visit filled with love and blessings and you can never get too much of either.