Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Recent Photos

I was so thrilled to see my first BIG bird.   I was at Patricia Lake early one morning this week and investigated a white patch across the water.

It was a Blue Heron.  This is the best shot I got and was hoping he had decided to go fishing or at least stand but he was content to sit there and look at me.

I will go back in a few days but they must into migration already headed to the States so it likely will not be there when I return.

This creature was a more cooperative.  It is a Yellow Dragonfly.  I love the bright spots a the ends of its wings!

The structure on it's back where the wing attach is very interesting and detailed.

It has big eyes and looks like a being a person could connect with.

I was glad to have spotted it in the yellow green grass in the meadow.

This the latest book I had on my night stand.  "The Road to Paradise Island" by Victoria Holt.  My Mom had read the book and passed it onto to me.  I enjoyed the book very much.

Annalice Mallory, the sheltered daughter of a family of map makers, discovers the cryptic diary of her long-dead ancestor that includes a map of a mysterious far-of island. Philip, Annalice's brother, sets sail for the island, lured by the promise of incomparable riches to be found. But when he doesn't return, Annalice sets out to find him -- and the secrets of the diary -- in a desperate journey that leads her through the worlds' most exciting outposts . . . and finally to the tropical islands of the South Seas, where she encounters heart-stopping peril, but also the promise of love.

I found the discovery of the diary very compelling.  She grows up from a teenager to an independent woman during the experience of searching for her ancestor.  Set in England in the early 1900s and included travel on a ship to Australia. It all ends well in the end. 

Eleanor Alice Burford Hibbert (1906–1993), better known to readers as Victoria Holt, Philippa Carr, and Jean Plaidy, was one of the world’s most beloved and enduring authors. Her career spanned five decades, and she was heralded as the “Queen of Romantic Suspense.” She continued to write historical fiction under the name of Jean Plaidy and romantic suspense as Victoria Holt until the time of her death.
Of course, it is time to harvest so I was fortunate to be able to pick raspberries in a friend's patch on 2 Sundays.  The first Aug 4th garnered enough to make a double batch of Raspberry Bavarian with my Mom's recipe.  I shared half with my sister and brother in law when I visited to pick saskatoon berries last week.  I have frozen a container of raspberries with enough to make Bavarian again!  I picked saskatoons at our regular UPick - Farrant Junction on Wednesday last week.  The berries were really nice and big and the picking was easy.  I picked 2 ice cream pails which made 4 bags of berries for the freezer.

I was driving down to my sisters to pick berries and it rained the whole way.  I was concerned berry picking would not happen.  I was prepared to pick in the rain if necessary. We decided to make our other preserves on Tuesday and hope of better weather on Wednesday. I made chutney and she made berry syrup which she serves with club soda on a hot day.

I stuck to last year's recipe with a few tweeks.
I halved the sugar in the recipe this year but did add a few extra dried cranberries.
I added garlic which was not in the original recipe but I like it.
I switched from dark raisins to golden raisins to keep the color in the gold colors.

I made 6 one cup jars this year.  That will be plenty.  I have some leftover jars from my experiments last year.  It is great to spend time with family and put some good food away for winter.

Sharing with Through My Lens #203 hosted by Mersad.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Recent Photos

This is the flowers that Dad bought for Mom`s 85th birthday this weekend.  It is an Anthurium and the way to water it is to place 6 ice cubes on the soil once a week.  Place it in bright indirect light. She will have a reminder of this milestone for a while.

We had a terrific day of celebration with family, friends and neighbors. 

My sister picked some Hairy False Goldenaster on the weekend for me. 

I placed them in this great Robert Held Blue Poppy art glass vase.  I diffused the background by hanging sheer drapes on the second rod in the living room window.  I was always setting up something temporary. Now, they will stay up all the time.

This book was recommended by a friend in the Welcome to my Kitchen group.  Kate Quinn is an who writes historical fiction.

This book was a great one.  Covering time during the Second World War and the early 1950s.  The name character is a strong woman who flew airplanes for Russia. A war correspondent who was connected in another way was the other main character. It was a nice change in point of view as I have read many with England as the background.  The end has a interesting twist and excellent ending.  Would highly recommend this book.

Made of Wood was the theme for Flickr Macro Monday.  This a section of wood magnet from Hawaii brought back by a friend a couple years ago.

You can visit my Flickr photo stream to see which photo I submitted.

You can check out the submissions for the theme here.

I am finding the cloves especially beautiful this year.

Top left is white clover.
Top right is a Great Crested Grebe

Bottom left is Perennial Sow Thistle.
Bottom right is a Cinnamon Teal.

I really enjoyed seeing the sides of the highways covered by Yellow Sow Thistles.  It looked like a garden planted along the way.

Sharing with Mosaic Monday #38

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Recent Photos

On one of my recent walks I saw this huge Bumble Bee.    It almost as big as the clover blossom it is feeding on.

It is good to see bees and butterflies around but not as many as in other years.

I found this beautiful art glass vase at the thrift shop recently.  It was signed so I thought I would at least be able to research it.  I paid my few dollars and brought it home.

After some research I found that it is by an glass blowing artist named Robert Held.   He is located in Parksville BC and has returned to glass blowing in his retirement.

The name of the collection is Blue Poppy and it is the small Classic Vase.   I have placed grasses in it for this photo but it would look great with white daisies.

It was a great find.  I have another piece of his work which is a heart paper weight.

I have been looking for a salt cellar for use near the stove as noted in this post. Especially when salting water for pasta a good amount is needed and trying to get what I need from a shaker was challenging.

This one appeared a little while ago.  It is very cute in the shape of an acorn.

The spoon holds 1/2 tsp of salt that makes measuring easy!

As you can see in the last photo there it is sitting next to the stove ready to serve.

I am finding the clover plentiful and very pretty this year.

I captured this one this morning. I love the color and it was dewy and sparkly as the sun touched it. When reviewing my photos I discovered that there was a grasshopper sitting in the shade.

We had some flooding in my building on Thursday last week.  The source was discovered on Friday, July 19th and this big blue air mover was my companion over the weekend.   The tape indicates the wet areas and the demolition starts this week.

No doubt it will be weeks before my hall and bedroom closet is back to normal.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

2019 Cardmaking - CH - Class 7

I had my monthly class at Compassion House tonight.  I am continuing with Designer Paper Split layout. 

This card is in the portrait orientation and I used double sided designer card stock by Imaginisce - Kewl Stuff - Hot Spots.   Cut at 3.5 inches and the small piece flipped over.  Reassembled with tape.

A piece of celery grosgrain ribbon over the join and taped to the back. Adhered it to the deep teal card front.

The greeting was printed with deep teal on the taupe card stock.  It was punched with the Stampin Up Decorative Label.   It was adhered over the ribbon aligned in the same direction with 3D foam tape.

This card will end up in the box of thank you cards for Compassion House clients to thank donors who support their stay.

This card is in the landscape orientation and I used double sided designer card stock by Farm House Paper Company - Where Ideas Take Hold.

I paired the paper with gold, green and deep brown card bases.

The grosgrain ribbon is espresso.

The greeting was adhered across the ribbon instead of aligned along the same line. 

The ladies really enjoyed the time making cards.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Recent Photos

This is a flax flower at the community garden.  

Love the gorgeous color and delicate various shades.

This is a name tag provided at a family event this weekend.  The person in charge wanted to make a tag that would not end up in the garbage. 

A piece of white fabric sewn to bright fabric.  I cut pieces of lycra fabric in super colors strung through the holes. 

The names were written with permanent markers.  This one just fit on my wrist and made it totally visible.

This is the seed head of the Yellow Salsify plant. 

It looks like a giant dandelion.

The seed head measures about 4.5 - 5 inches across.  They are gorgeous and wonderful when intact.

I saw the flowers in the river valley a couple of weeks so I know to keep an eye out for the seed heads.   They showed up a bit battered with all the rain we are getting.  I say flowers out again so I will have to wait a bit for new seed heads.
This is one seed from the seed head of the Yellow Salsify plant.

The seed was set against a white background and lit with a warm light.  I wanted to capture the ring of light around the center of the seed.

This is an alternative image for the Flickr Macro Monday challenge - Patterns in Nature

You can check my Flickr Photostream for my recent photos.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Recent Photos

I captured this rose on my walk the other morning.  It is a new plant in the neighbour's yard.

I am guessing the name of this one is Gemini based on my web research.

Loved the way it was hidden away a bit behind another blossom but I captured it in good focus.

Roses are such a summer flower.  They bring color and scent into our world.

I have been sewing!

I made bags to carry reusable dishes to a family event this weekend. 

It is made of polyester fabric in  my favorite colors navy and yellow.  I added a bit of an accent on the right. The square was cut 12.5 to 13 inches square. A zipper was added at the top.  It was turned right side out and the edges were top stitched.  
It holds my plate, bowl, glass, cutlery, my stainless steel straw  and a cotton napkin.  The bag can be used as my place mat if needed. 

I made a couple of extras.  These feature a microfiber towel and polyester fabric.

We are working on less waste so maybe we can make these with the quilting group as a fund raiser.  An idea.

I was to visit my niece last week and we sorted through bags of fabric she had been donated.

There were lots of lycra fabric which we set aside for the ReUse center.  My sister called and was looking for an alternative to making throw away name tags for a family event.  I said there is this bag of colorful fabric.  I cut them into 1 inches strips and when stretched they roll into nice cording. We have lanyards for name tags! 

You can't beat the colors.

Another good shot of a Yellow Warbler.  This one seems smaller than usual so he may be a juvenile born this year.

They are so hard to spot these days but they sure can be heard.

You can see he is singing his heart out.

A few things that came my way as I celebrated with family and friends last month.

A stainless steel water bottle which will come in handy. My favorite tea - Masala Chai, a tea infuser, a china tea cup and Stampin Up Tea stamps and the matching Framelits to cut out the die cuts. 

I did go out for special lunches as well and I did have DQ ice cream cake a couple of times.

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Some Flower Pics

A lot of rain is putting water drops on flowers.  That works well for adding interest during my photography walks.

I am finding the pansies particularly good this year.  I have gotten some really nice ones.

The white rose was really nice with a water drops sparkling in the sun.

This rose's head was drooping. Not sure it was the water drops causing it.

This a cultured rose at the neighbourhood garden.

Love the pink.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Recent Photos

Wishing all my friends and family on line in Canada a Happy Canada Day! 

I captured this flag at the Legislature Grounds yesterday.

The wind was quite brisk but it was a wonderful day with no rain for a change.

Today, it rained for a few hours in early afternoon.

This is the book on my night table this week.  The same author of Bridges of Madison Country which is one of my favorite movies.  Love the story.

I have started a couple of books in the last week which did not work out so they are off to the thrift store.  I have to remind myself that just because I start a book I don`t need to finish.

This one is going well. 

I took on this sewing piece for my niece.  I was part of a fleece project that my niece was leading where we collected fleece blankets.  The blankets were made into these ponchos by girls in her group.

I never put a poncho together so with a bit of help from my niece and ventured out.  The blanket already had the black edging so I just left it. I removed a piece of velcro and the leftovers of a bag it used to roll into. 
The hood and the pocket were cut from the tie dyed blanket.  The hood is sewn into a slit cut in the center of the blanket.  This should be a double seam.  I used a stitched zigzag to sew in the pocket.  The pocket is placed on the inside of the poncho so your arms stay warm too.

I am working on getting a salt cellar because I am tired of getting enough salt into the pasta water with a salt shaker.

I realized that the spoon needed to be plastic, ceramic or stainless steel to survive in the salt. I found a nice ceramic spoon which holds 1/2 tsp of salt.  I have put salt in this cut glass jam/condiment jar but it is not the look I am going for.

I have been looking for a few weeks and I press on to find a container that has a lid with an opening that works for the spoon I have.  Keeping in mind my blue and yellow kitchen I would like ceramic or glass.

I will post the winner here when I find it.

This works really well when making pasta because the salt should be added while the water is boiling.

The gardens and flower beds are growing really well with the rain and sun we are getting.

I love this bearded iris.

Sharing with

Angie who hosts Mosaic Monday #34 on Letting Go of the Bay Leaf.

Mersad who hosts Through My Lens #198.

Photo Blogging Challenge - Get Out and Play

With the theme being Get Out and Play for June and I am not very sporty I had to work out to find photos.


The fresh air, the walking and the spending time with friends all comes with playing a round of golf.

Hopefully it is a group just having fun so the competition is dialed back quite a bit.

It is a great outdoor sport for those who can afford it.

When I was a kids the Monkey Bars were one of my favorite things on the school playground.

I loved to challenge myself as to the number of bars I could skip over.

This is the closest I could find to Monkey Bars.  I love the color and the shape.

I like the wooden structure better than the all plastic structures.

I am sure there will be a lot of kids enjoying fun on the structures at schools and playgrounds all summer long.

Water, sun, and summer are all ingredients to have fun.  These actually have LEDs as well so they change colors!

Spray parks will be popular as well to get out an play this summer.  I have been known to hit a splash park when the temps get above 30C.  You get wet and 5 minutes later you are dry again.

Slides are fun. They were not my thing in the playground when I was a kid.

Still don't appeal to me but I am sure the kids enjoy and have fun on this slide.  I love the sand surface.  Yeah I have to empty sandals when I am done playing but I love it on my feet.

I love swings!  I remember learning how to propel myself back and forth with out someone pushing me.

We tried to go completely around when we were kids but of course never did.

We were a bunch of kids in our family so there was always someone to push.

I have sat on these swings a couple of times when school is out re-engaging my inner child and having fun.

I am sharing with PJ at Lil HooHaa who hosts this photo blogging challenge every month.

Friday, June 28, 2019

Small Quilt 2 - Teal Turquoise Leaves

I have finished another quilt.  I wanted to improve the sashing process and cut down on the about of stitching to make it softer.

I chose this blue ivory leaf patterned fabric.  I paired it with an aqua and teal solids.  These are cotton polyester fibers and seem thinner than 100% cotton.  As these were large pieces I just could not cut it into small pieces.

I cut 9.5 inch squares with my quilting ruler from the blue leaves patterned and the aqua solids.  I cut 10 from each for a total of 20 squares which were placed in a grid of 4 across and 5 rows.

I needed to decorate the squares somehow. I decided to add a contrasting strip which will be top stiched to the square.  I cut a strip of fabric at 4" wide and the length of the fabric. Using a 3" card stock (pink) template I ironed the .5 inch sides over.

I laid the strip across the square leaving 1" margin at the top and bottom so it would not interfere wit the corners. 

I pinned and trimmed to the square edge.  The angle was right for the next square so it was very efficient use of the strips.  I put the aqua solid on the patterned and the opposite for the other squares.

It was top stitched very near edges.  I was able to sew all 10 square in a chain process then just cut them apart.  Another efficient process.

The 20 back squares are dark teal and cut again with the same 9.5 inch square quilting ruler.

I used a white cotton flannelette sheet for the "batting" in this quilt.  These 20 were cut to 9.5 inches square.

I needed a pattern to hold the 3 layers together.  I decided to cut a 4" square of card stock and then pin it to the square sandwich aligned along the decorative strip.  I just followed the edge with my sewing machine foot.  Repeated for all 20 squares.

In hindsight I could have quilted the squares when top stitching the decorative strip.  Remember that for next time.

The sashing between the squares is also dark teal.  I found this video produced by Teresa from Down Under. Quilt as You Go with Narrow Sashing. I followed the instructions and the quilt worked out really well.   The sashing between the squares was cut to 10 inches in length then trimmed once assembled.  She suggested hand stitching the back sashing but that was not going to work for me.  I selected a decorative stitch with thread that matched the teal really well to close the back sashing.

The sashing between the rows was cut to 40 inches in length.  The process for putting the rows into the quilt was the same as the assembling of the squares into rows but just wider.

That left the binding.  Again it is in the dark teal fabric.  I needed 170.5 inches of binding.  I cut strips of 3" until I had what I needed.  You can check this video The Ultimate Quilt Binding Tutorial with Jenny Doan of Missouri Star which gave me all the information I needed.  Even how to finish your binding so there is no sign of where you ended.  Worked perfectly.  I used the same decorative stitch to machine bind the edge of the quilt.

I am really happy with the overall look of the quilt, the weight is lighter, and the assembly really came together really well.