Weekend projects

I am sticking with my NY resolution to spend more time doing nothing.  I notice the most when I start writing a blog and think back over the week and think about what I did and realize, not so much.  It was a good week at work, no problems, but lots of good projects turned in and several problems solved.  That's how work is supposed to be.  Saturday, I worked in the yard all morning and then Rob took me to a real nursery (as opposed to a hardware store garden center).  It was fun and we saw a lot of plants I would love to plant, if or when I have the space.  I'm putting together some mixed pots for display and needed something that would trail out of the pot, but mostly, I was looking for a Japanese Maple.  Of course, it rained and was cold yesterday, so I didn't get to do anything with my very expensive specimen, but it's here and ready to pot into a larger pot.  I plan to grow it on the back of the house along with a collection of other shade loving plants, all in blue planters.  I  hope to get to that soon!

Remember that I mentioned a gingham afghan that I saw the pattern for in a Project Linus newsletter?  Well, I had to start it a couple weeks ago.  Rob and I tried to find the right combination of red or blue or green or gold, but we didn't find anything that did the 'half step' of color saturation except these grays.  Gray isn't a color I work with much, but I love how this is turning out.  It looks like a black/white photo.  It's going to be an adult size afghan, so I started with 3 pounds of yarn and may need another small skein of the lighter gray to finish it.  

I'm also working on a sock.  I was ready to tie off the toe when I found a dropped stitch.  I was going to pick out a couple rows to pick it back up again and before I knew it, I'd taking out 18 rows of knitting, so I'll have to wait until another day to share a pic.  

Sunday morning, Rob and I were both in a cleaning mood and spent the morning dusting and putting things away.  Sunday afternoon, I took advantage of the cold cloudy day and stayed inside.  I started assembling a shirt that was cut out and had the interfacing fused to it, but I hadn't taken the first stitch on.  I got the front and back completed and the sleeve plackets put int, but ran out of time before I could get the sleeves added.  Now all the fiddly bits are done, it should go together really quickly, next time I have the time to just sit and sew.  Rob has already picked fabric for his next shirt, so I need to get on it to finish this one.  (Can't take that man into a fabric store šŸ˜)

There were some nice flower pics.  I had forgotten about this pot of Iris.  I assumed they were a clump that I'd dug up somewhere else and stuck in a pot to give away.  I could not have been more wrong.  They're a clump we dug up from the first house Syd lived in and I got my first bloom from them this year.  So, I'll be dividing these so Rob can have half and then finding a nice place to enjoy them in the garden.  

We picked up this kalanchoe at the garden center to give some color to the table on the deck.  I love having a flowering plant there to enjoy.  

This was supposed to be a white bougainvillea, but the more sun the plant gets, the pinker the flowers are.    I don't mind.  It's still a beauty!

And, some lovely yellow Iris.  

The daylilies are going to have their best year ever.  I've never seen so many scapes and flowers starting to form.  I can hardly wait!

Everybody have a great week!  Find something to enjoy and if possible, somebody to enjoy it with, even if it's just dusting!  Hope you're getting some flowers where you are.  



Flower projects

There was a lot of working in the garden this weekend,  It was the perfect stress relief after a challenging week.  And, I finished a flower related needlework project.   

This is a kit I bought at the quilt show last month.  I love the simplicity of wool appliquĆ©.  I did a fabric substitution to get a better green for some leaves and I added the white flowers to cover up a placement mistake I made in the middle where all the melon colored flowers come together.  I saw this kit at the quilt show in September and wanted it, but it was very expensive and looked complicated for a first wool project, so I picked something different then, but after a couple other less expensive kits, I felt ready for this one.  It's mounted on a linen background.  It's the first time I've done wool appliquĆ© on a background that wasn't also wool, but the loose weave made this as easy to sew through as wool would have been.  

Rob got flowers last week from a friend.  Who doesn't love getting flowers unexpectedly.  

I spent a good bit of time working in this part of the garden.  I took out a stone retaining wall that wouldn't stay stacked and replaced it with bricks.  I'm terracing parts of the garden to retain the water that would normally flow right though to the street.  Our yard is on a hillside and all the water from the hill flows through it to the storm drains.  Why not keep as much of that free water as I can?

After a great show from the Amaryllis, the iris are starting to bloom.  This yellow one was first.  Not sure why it bloomed so close to the ground, but the clump has also put out longer stems for me to enjoy from more of a distance.   

This multi-color also popped up a pretty bloom.  I'm still not sure where this one came from.  We thought it came from a house Syd lived in, but that would have been too recently for me to have so many clumps of this.  I call them brown because that's the color before they open, but they're really purple and gold and yellow and lavender and white on the inside.

Everybody have a great week!  Enjoy a little nature if you can.  Spend time with loved ones and keep your chin up.  Times are hard and sometimes, we just need to take a breath and enjoy what's happening right now.  




Short post today.  We have a lot going on and not much to talk about.  

Last week, I got the fabrics I bought at the quilt show laundered and ready to use/store.  This is always a good opportunity to pick up fabrics for low prices from their boutique shop and I totally took advantage of it...even though I need new fabric like I need a hole drilled in my head.

 On the left are bits and bobs and scraps that I want to turn into a commemorative quilt.  I like to pick up little pieces and then turn them into something that reminds me of the show.  Next are pieces for a blue/white quilt I have in mind, using the blue-gray fabric on top to pull colors from.  The only color other than blue, white or gray would be the pink triangles in that fabric.  

Next are some pieces for stash and on the right is a collection called Adventure by Elizabeth Hartman.  A fun little group and if I add the white piece below it, could make a very cute autumn colored quilt.  

I turned in a couple big projects at work last week.  It was a very good week to be Lane.  Lots of recognition for work well done.  And, I got out of my own way and let people say nice things to one another without saying something like 'aw shucks ma'am, tweren't nothin'. 

Last week, Project Linus sent their monthly email (yes, I should be making Linus quilts again...they always make me so happy).  There was a pattern for a Gingham Afghan from Daisy Farm Crafts.  It's the first Afghan I've seen in years that I'm thinking about buying yarn to make.  Most of what I crochet is leftover yarns and finishing other people's work to donate it, but I could see me buying yarn to make this one.  It's cute and looks like a challenge.  

Everybody have a great week!  Find someone you love and give them a big old hug and tell them you love them.  And, try not to sweat the small stuff (unless you're using it to hide from some big stuff).




This weekend, I got some time to clean up the mess I'd made of the yard.  I'm still not done.  I'm amazed at how much stuff was in the greenhouse and when I pulled it out, I was in a rush because of a last minute change in plans and just put it anywhere.  Now, I'm having to move it around.  And, I think Rob is getting impatient.  I've been picking things up and moving them around during the day when I have a few minutes.  I usually pull weeds on my breaks, but now I'm picking up pots and moving them where I'd like them to be for the duration of the reconstruction.  

And, taking pictures.  

I don't have the any idea what this is, but it makes these cute flowers that look like a face.  It came as a volunteer in a plant Sydney bought years ago.  The plant has passed, but the volunteer has continued to bloom.  I'll enjoy it a while, then it will succumb to the heat.  

The mock orange are really putting on a show.  I have two outside the fence and one inside and two in pots, so there's white all around the yard right now.  

This is leadwort plumbago.  Blooms early and only gets a few inches tall, so I have to be sure to get the leaves out of it early in the spring...which I did not do this year.  Late in the summer, it's big sister plumbago will bloom flowers that look almost exactly the same.  

The amaryllis are starting to bloom.  Just a few now, but when I was out there yesterday, there were stalks all over with heavy blossoms about to open.  

This is like a baby elephant ear.  I was walking one day and found four pots of something that looked dead.  I was interested in the pots and the free soil, not so much in the plants, but I brought them home and put all the bulbs in one pot and they came up.  They don't like a lot of sun and the largest leaves are about 7" long.  It's easy to find a shady spot for them every year. because they do so well.  

This is a lily I bought myself a week or so ago.  It's a double.  I've found that I do lilies really well in the green house...in the yard, not so much.  There's a sad lily story further down that explains why.

A very ambitious echinacea.  It's very early for these to bloom.  This is a seedling that came up in an inconvenient spot and I didn't move it and now it's in bloom, so I probably won't move it til end of summer.  

This is the other lily.  Sydney bought me this one maybe 10 years ago?  I kept it in the greenhouse and every year, it would reward me with a head full of blooms.  So, I got ambitious and decided to move them outside.  The squirrels promptly at most of the bulbs.  There were just two small bulbs left in the pot, but they each gave me a flower this year and soon as the greenhouse is done, they'll be moving back in there along with the new lily from above.  

This is stuff I just ripped out of the ground and stuck in pots, using soil from plants that didn't make it over the winter.  I'll either give them away or use them somewhere else.  This is from about 25 feet of flowerbed that I got a chance to really sit down and work on last weekend.  I need to do this same thing all the way around the garden, but there just hasn't been time.  And, that's okay.  Sometimes, I have to be flexible and accept that I can't do it all.  

Everybody have a great week!  If you garden, get your hands dirty.  Every chance you get.