Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Playing Catch-up - quilt finishes and around the farm

 Once again, I've fallen out of the habit of posting a couple times a month.  Not because I've given up quilting, not a chance!  Time, being what it is, seems to become more fleeting the older we get.  Anyhow, here's a quick catch-up on what I've been working on.

First up are a couple quilts that will be going to the camp auction over Labor Day.  I can't take credit for either of these, though I've worked on them,  as both tops were donated to our ministry by Nann of With Strings Attached.  

This one was machine quilted and bound by yours truly.  It's a nice queen coverlet size.

A close-up - hopefully you can see a bit of the quilting:

The second top is Nann's rendition of a Bonnie Hunter mystery pattern called Rhododendron Trail.  Isn't it just beautiful!  A local long-arm quilter donated her services for this one, I just provided the batting, backing fabric and bound it.  

This one will fit either a queen or king bed.   A close-up:

I finished another quilt destined for the ministry.  Not sure yet if it will go to the auction, though at the moment I'm thinking we will save it for a local need over the winter months when there always seem to be displaced families due to house fires.  I showed the completed top in an earlier post.  I quilted in the  ditch along the blue horizontal sashings and did loopy meanders over the individual blocks.  A preschooler quilt, large enough for a toddler or bunk bed.  Lots of fun I-spy blocks in this one.

We learned a while ago that we will be great-grandparents in mid-October, and I recently started on a baby quilt for the little one - a girl(!).  I have no illusions about this baby quilt becoming an heirloom, especially since the young couple already has two german shepherds in their small home!  So, simple and quick is the mantra of the day.  The top was completed this evening.  A pieced backing to come, mostly pink and yellow, with a lot less blue than the top.

Did I say this baby is a girl!  All the grandparents are so excited as we do not have many girl children in this family!  Of our nine grands, only two are girls, so this is a great start for the newest generation.

At our recent quilt ministry meetings I've begun cutting and piecing stars that hopefully will eventually become a camp auction donation for next year.  No idea just yet what the eventual pattern will be though I've wanted to make a strippy quilt for some time and have a couple inspiration quilts bookmarked.  We'll just see what happens in the next few months.

On the home front, we finally have the vegetable garden almost all planted.  Very late due to some unseasonably late freezes that decimated all our fruit trees.  Many local folks who planted at the usual time lost a lot of their crops.  The local Amish farms that sell strawberries are reporting a very short and sparse season.  I'm thankful our blueberries bloomed late and we seem to have a good crop coming along.  Our perennial flowers are late too, some of the peonies are just now opening, all but one of the irises were killed off in the late freezes, the red poppies are finally in bloom (they're usually blooming for Memorial Day) and so on.  I took a little walk about yesterday and snapped a few photos.

There is a row of these beauties along the south side of the garage this year - volunteers as far as we can tell because neither of us can recall planting them there!  These poppies have a habit of coming up far from where their seeds were sown the previous year!  We're always delighted to see them wherever they pop up though.
The latest peony so far - and my favorite.

Poppies by the front porch.  The eastern phoebe couple has decided to honor us again this year by building their nest atop the porch posts - yes - posts!  Mama rejected last year's nest earlier this spring and built a new nest on the post that hadn't had a nest in all the years we've been here.  After her five fledglings left that nest early last week, a couple days later mama bird was back rebuilding last year's nest on the opposite post and is now setting her second brood for the year.  They are such fun to watch right outside our living room window, and so diligent in feeding their babies all the insects we're happy to have gone from the yard.  

A quick peek at a couple of the hanging baskets on our covered back porch - my favorite place for mid-morning lattes and sometimes lunch.  I love this first begonia's two-tone flowers, and hope I can successfully root some leaf cuttings soon.

We also made up a couple of our own baskets using small nursery plants and hoping they would fill out nicely as summer progresses.  This next one is my favorite.

I guess that's probably more than enough for one night!   Thanks for reading, and happy stitching!