Thursday, October 25, 2018

Lots of Work, No Photos

In the last two weeks (of not particularly nice weather), a lot of work was done around the yard. D worked very hard outside - some was the usual mowing, but a lot was raking leaves, taking care of bonsai specimens that live outside during the moderate weather, and even trying to corral the acorns.  Those acorns are huge!  They are so large that we can't park in our driveway because the acorns can mar the car.  I wonder what the insurance company would say that if we told them dents were caused by those pesky nuts!

Acorns aside, D spent a bit of time helping me with the gardening chores which, at this time of year, take a lot of time.  But first, before he came home from the trip that included being inducted into the Middle School Hall of Fame, I did take out all the garden annuals in the front yard berm.  They were looking sad and not at all pretty.  The removal of dying annuals didn't take too long, and it improved the appearance of  the front of the house.  However, carrying pail after pail full of those droopy, dying annuals off to our dumping spot adds both weight and time to the job.

The next day of gardening instead of finishing the front I started with the biggest job - the backyard garden. That garden, if its dogleg were straightened out, would stretch almost all the way across the back.  By the time I was within sight of the end, I was moving very slowly and was very tired.  That's when D, my hero, came to my rescue and helped me finish up.  Even so, it took a full day of work. 

The third day,  I realized that I hadn't finished the job in the front yard. The perennials in the berm needed to be cut back - a job that would take more time.  Clipping is hard on the hands and also requires more care than yanking plants out to say nothing of the carting away part of the job.  There were also some summer blooming bulbs - Peruvian daffodils that hadn't bloomed - that I wanted to lift and hold over to next year Maybe they will like next year's weather better.  While they didn't bloom, they certainly multiplied!

Once finished with that, I decided to stop for the day, and toddled off to have lunch.  As I ate, I glanced out at the daylily garden and had to be clipped down.  It's a longish stretch of garden that is suffering from the white pines that shade much the bed's length so as I clipped - again! - I pondered where I could move the daylilies.  The continuous clipping left me with a very sore hand but all garden areas clean and neat for winter.

As for the daylilies?  Still haven't figured out where to move them.  Maybe next year.

Friday, October 19, 2018

David is Honored

A quick post to mention the award David received last night.  The New York State Middle School Association recognized him for his "lifetime commitment and achievement in advancing the goals of middle-level education."  

There was a banquet and speeches and laughter.  To say nothing of the back-slapping and hugs and even a few teary eyes.  Our daughter managed to drive in after work and arrived in time to enjoy both the dinner and see her father awarded this plaque.

He was really pleased, and daughter and I were very proud.  Unfortunately, our daughter had to dash back home before this photo was taken by a friend (who used my phone so I'd be sure to have a photo).  I think other people were able to get some with daughter in the picture, too, and hope copies will be sent our way.

We will say nothing about the woman he is standing beside- except that she was thrilled that all his years of hard work were appreciated.

Monday, October 8, 2018

The Way it's Going

Another interesting day  . . . D and I made sure the furnace was available for Furnace Man (aka FM) to be able to access.  During that rearranging of things that live in basements, I realized that I would not be able to do the laundry until after FM did his magic both because I could not get to the washing machine since I'd walled it off with basement items and because I decided having unmentionables hanging about over FM's head wasn't something any of us would appreciate.

So instead of laundry, I busied myself with sorting through some boxes that had been unearthed and seemed to have things that we could get rid of.  For example, there were two plastic drawer-bins that had kitchen items we used to take with us when we went to Vermont each summer.  We haven't gone back since 2016, and even in those last years, we didn't need to take those items because the place we rented was fully furnished.  We found some things of David's that he had no difficulty getting rid of.  Then there were two boxes that were clearly for me to sort more carefully as there might be treasures.

And there were. First,  I found fabric that was supposed to be borders for the hand-sewn spool wall hanging I made several years ago and for which, since I no clue where I had hidden that fabric, good friend Sandy replaced from her stash!  I sent her a text today with a photo of what I had found and will give it to her tomorrow during the Crazy Quilt "class".  Second, I found an "antique" (in quotation marks because I don't know if its 100 years old) flour sack with which I had planned to make an apron.  Third,and oh, this was special, I discovered fabric from which I made part of our daughter's first Christmas dress and a little slip of hers, also.  Those finds may find their way into a wall hanging along with the very worn placemat/dish cloth (my memory won't come up with their exact use at the moment) that were also in the box.  

And, of course, there was something more that.  Here is another of my many unfinished projects . . . but this one goes back a way . . .

A while ago, I was discussing this project with my best friend and told her I was sure these blocks (all 26 - 28 of them) which had been put away each on its own paper plate had been accidentally thrown away.  And knowing that, all the coordinating fabrics had been re-purposed or tossed.  

So - of course, I found the blocks.  That's the way my week is going!

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Design Wall Quilt

Today after clearing off my cutting surface I decided to take time off from working on the major projects which have kept me busy for the month of September and spilled into October.  There was what had been a pile of fabrics that had morphed into a puddle spreading out from the closet into the room at large that I cleaned up.  That meant doing significant rearranging in the closet itself so those floor fabrics could be put away.  

When that was finished I looked around and the design wall caught my eye.  Or more specifically one work-in-progress called my attention.  It was the beginning of a project that has been on the design wall since it was put up and which has been glaring at me for several years.  You see, the project was far more difficult than any of us in the class had anticipated, but originally, I had thought about adding a few more blocks (instead of turning it into a bed quilt) to make a decent wall-hanging.  

The trouble with that is I couldn't locate the pattern, can't remember the designer, and don't seem to have any of the fabrics except the white with the tree design. So I just sewed the 4 blocks together, and here it is: 

I knew I'd have to find something to use as a intermediate border before the white with the trees (the only fabric I kept).  The blue that forms the intersecting rings was impossible to match so I tried oranges and greens and even yellow, but nothing worked.  I figured I'd have to take the piece in to a quilt shop to see if  there would be something I could use.  

Fortunately, a piece of  fabric caught my eye, and I thought it might match the navy blue of the tree trunks.  Imagine my surprise when I opened it up and found this:

I think it just might be perfect - for a large border.  It won't do for the narrow one I had in mind because of  its large design.  Should I try that narrow orange border that again?  It might do quite well . . . but what will I do with all that white w/tree fabric?  There's both too much to use as backing, and it's too special to hide.

So what do you think - does this blue work?  And what about the tree fabric - should I use it or save it for something else?