Saturday, July 30, 2011

Christmas in July

I finished another quilt!  This one was started a couple of years ago.  Do you see those flying geese blocks?  They were the first blocks of an online BOM by Twiddletails, called Geese in the Forest.  I eagerly started it, but by the time I had made 27 of these blocks I decided that this quilt was not going to happen.  I kept the flying geese blocks in a container, in case I changed my mind and wanted to continue with this BOM.  Needless to say, that never happened.

While cleaning up one day, I found them and decided to put them together as a Christmas quilt.  The geese blocks are 6 inches finished, so I cut a 6.5 square from every Christmas fabric I had and sewed them together alternately.  That was last winter.  The quilt top then sat in my UFO bin until a couple of weeks ago. 

I found some backing fabric in my Christmas stash (the only piece large enough) and sandwiched it. Then came the heat! I couldn't quilt it until the past few days, which have been overcast with a few drops of rain. It's a bit cooler, but still hot!

Here is another view of it.  The sun is really bright today.  I hope you can see the colours.  Don't you just love the summer phlox?  You can see two colours in this shot.  The light pink ones to the left of the others are plants I bought many years ago.  They never had a chance to grow because my garden had too much shade.  But in my new raised beds, they have taken off.

I also have some white phlox.  I don't know where these came from.  The only white phlox I had was planted under a wisteria bush and didn't get enough light.  But now these have come up in my west garden.  I think I will mark them and transplant them next year - to a better spot.

Sunday, July 24, 2011


No quilting got done this weekend.  Yesterday we decided to go to the ROM (Royal Ontario Museum).  They are currently featuring a special exhibit about Water.  It was very interesting and somewhat disturbing.  Living on the shores of some of the biggest lakes in North America it is sometimes easy to forget how precious our fresh water is.  20% of the world's fresh water is right here in the Great Lakes!  Can you imagine?  We have a gigantic obligation to keep our waters clean!  If you ever get a chance to see this special exhibit, I hope you will do so.

 A prehistoric turtle.

They wouldn't let me take any photos inside the Water exhibit, but later, when we toured a small area of the permanent exhibits in the main part of the museum, I was able to take a few shots of the dinosaur exhibit.

Tyrannosaurus Rex looks hungry.

Friday, July 22, 2011


As I told you yesterday, Vicki from Felines and Fibre Arts came for a visit.  She brought me stuff!  Oh!  I was so excited!

Wonderful fabrics and a great new book!  How lucky can a girl get!  I am so inspired! 

She also brought me another bag of scraps.  I can't show you those because I have already used a lot of them in these scrap blocks that I have been working on.  The rest are in my scrap basket.

Last summer I made a picnic quilt for my DD.  You can see it here.  It took me a long time to get my head around a quilt that would be put on the beach and sat upon.  But I finally got it done.  DD took her quilt on a picnic last weekend.  Now her friend wants one too!  So I took out my scrap blocks and decided I would make some more.  This kind of sewing is very relaxing to me.  I just take one strip after another and sew them together.  I will sandwich and quilt each block and then join them in a quilt as you go fashion.

It is still hot today, but not as bad as yesterday.  Mimi is not happy about the heat, but she continues to sit out in the solarium where it is the warmest of any place in our house.  Just to show you how fed up she is, here is a rather unlady-like pose for my camera.

"Meow!  Go away, you're making my head itch."

Thursday, July 21, 2011

We're Having a Heatwave......

I thought it would be fun to record the progress on my mystery pumkinsquash, but our weather has been so hot over the last few days that this ridiculous thing has started to ripen.  And... it's turning orange.  So it must be a pumpkin!  It appears that I have not been the only one keeping an eye on it.  Can you see the little bite mark?  That must have been my resident squirrel.  Guess I am going to have to fight him for it.
25 inches around

Here is the second pumpkin that was fertilized on this vine.  It is actually bigger than the first one and it is still growing. 
26 inches around
And here is the smallest pumpkin.  It may seem bigger than the others but that is because I zoomed in to take the photo.
18 inches around

It's hot, hot, hot in Toronto today.  We are going to have a high temperature of 37C but with the humidity it will feel like 47C.  That will probably set a record. 

I was out early this morning, watering my potted plants and hanging baskets.  We haven't had any rain for a long time.  The sun was just starting to come up while I was out there.  I had my camera to take photos of the pumpkins, so I used it to capture the sunrise.  It is actually hotter outside than inside.  I am expecting Vicki from Felines and Fibre Arts to come over this morning.  I think we will be hiding downstairs in my cool basement. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Oh, no! As if a Mystery Squash isn't Enough. Now There Seems to be a Leopard Lily in my Garden too.

This cute little flower is blooming in my garden right now.  I planted it last year and it didn't flower then, but now it is beginning to.  It had a name tag, but I put that away in a safe place and now I can't find it.  Duh!  I think the common name is Leopard Lily or Blackberry Lily because of the black seed pods that form after blooming. 

Does anyone recognize this?  The flowers are very tiny, but it looks like an interesting plant.  Please leave a comment if you know what it is.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Another Finish for July

I promised you a quilt and here it is!  I started this about 4 or 5 years ago.  It was taught at one of our guild's Bee Nights.  It was intended to use up some of the 5inch squares we had been exchanging.  I made mine 4 1/2 inches and used up many of my own novelty fabrics.  We had to piece the blocks according to a pattern.  Then we had to cut the quilt top in half and cut that piece in half again, so that after sewing the pieces back together the blocks were 'on point'.  I know it sounds complicated, but it worked!  It has become an I Spy quilt!

You can see some of my plants in the background.  I must go out and pull some weeds!  It is going to be hot again today. I was outside early this morning to do some watering - my hanging baskets and potted plants. 

The fabrics in this quilt remind me of the I Spy hexagon quilt I was making last summer.  I think I am going to look for it and sit outside in the shade this afternoon and do some hand sewing. 

Hope everyone has a nice weekend!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Pumpkin Squash Update

I have decided to measure my mystery pumpkinsquash on a weekly basis to let you see how quickly it is growing.  This thing is incredible!  It is already almost 22 inches around.  There are two more smaller mysteries on the vine.  I will show you tomorrow - or sometime in the future.

Hope this isn't too boring for all of my quilter friends who come here to see what I have been doing quilt-wise.  It is very hot this week and the heat is staying and even getting worse in the coming days.  There is no rain in the forecast.  I don't feel much like quilting, but I was able to finish another quilt tonight, one that I started over 4 years ago.  I will show you tomorrow.  It is too dark to take a photo now.

Monday, July 11, 2011

I'm Dancing on Top of the World!

I couldn't be happier!  My kitchen is done!  Now I just have to clean up some saw dust and polish finger marks off my stainless (?) steel.  The water has been connected and the plumbing is done.  The appliances have all been installed.  I am ready to roll. 

This is the view of the left side.  I still have to make the stained glass panels, but right now I can't get to the work area of my studio.  Once I get all the stuff back into the cupboards I will be able to find my books and magazines to decide on a nice pattern.

This is the right side of the kitchen.  The water line to the fridge still has to be installed so that I can get automatic ice cubes.  I need them to water my orchids.  Sounds crazy, I know.  But I heard about that a couple of years ago.  I instructed my DH to put 4 or 5 ice cubes on top of the bark chips in the orchid pots every week.  It worked great and my DH was able to water my orchids when I could not.

Tomorrow I will show you some more of my garden.  My Little Shop of Horrors pumpkinsquash is growing quickly.  I think I will measure it every couple of weeks to keep you informed of its progress.

Saturday, July 09, 2011


I haven't posted in a week!  That's because I haven't done much sewing.  I finished the miniature for the winner of my give away, but it's a secret.  I can't show it to you because she reads my blog.  Oh, yes, and another reason is that I put everything into a box, taped it up and mailed it and then remembered that I hadn't taken a photo of it.
I hope she will send me one when she receives it.

And now a walk-about in my secret garden.  My plants have grown so much that my neighbours can't see me anymore when I sit outside.  So I feel as if I am in my secret garden.   Here are a few of the blooms that give my garden colour this week.  My white lilies.  I love these.  I managed to keep the lily beetles off this one!

Here is my little shop of horrors pumpkin squash.  It's getting big!  But I still am not sure of what it is.

 My zucchinis are getting big.  I think we will have to have some for dinner tonight.

And here is my Oleander.  I cut it back severely last year and have not had any flowers on it since then.  But now it is huge again and showing its beautiful colour against a blue sky.

I have also been working on my hexies - not much mind you - only a few of these got done this week.

Have a great weekend!

Saturday, July 02, 2011

A Finish for July!

I finished another Disappearing Nine Patch quilt.  I used left overs from other charity quilts as well as some of my own scraps.  This one will be donated to Quilts from the Heart when our guild starts up again in September.

I thought some of you might like to see this.  It's the first flower on my 'mystery' vine.  A beautiful colour, but impossible to tell what kind of plant, since all flowers on squash, cucumbers and pumpkins look similar.

Friday, July 01, 2011

Canada Day!

Today is Canada's birthday.  Our country is 144 years old.  Happy Birthday Canada!