Sunday 26 May 2013

Still Rowing Strong

My computer connects me again normally, and I have sewn my two rows of The Bee in my Bonnet Row-along I'm making at my own pace. The new rows are Winter Stars and Houses.
This red one looks a little like our house. Just a little!

With the help of friends, Nina Lise and Melanie, I got the patterns for last week's rows before my computer was co-operating. You have seen the Autumn Leaves already, here together with the new Mittens:

Ten down, three to go, and of course borders, backing and label.
It is time for the first harvest already! The rhubarb is growing fast, and I made us a dessert

with some raspberries from the freezer. Strawberries would have been better, but I only had raspberries and bilberries. This desert is typical for our corner of the world, maybe a bit old fashioned nowadays, but just wonderfully refreshing on a hot day. It is like a thick berry soup, served cold with sugar and maybe whipped cream or ice cream.

The lilies of the valley are blooming! When I was very very young, I had a deodorant spray that smelled of these flowers and the text on the bottle was Muguet, so fine in French. Another popular scent was Apple Blossom, for some reason in English.
I picked a bunch, and they smell so lovely every time I walk by.

What is your favourite flower scent?

Edit: naturally the rhubarb is a dessert with double s., like my observant daughter kindly helped me notice.

Sunday 19 May 2013

Happy Scrappy May and some Autumn leaves

This week has been fun and busy. We visited our daughter Kaija on Monday and Tuesday and enjoyed the first really warm, no-coat-on-in-town days. DD has been binding some amazing books lately, and she has her own study too, finally. I have been working on two quilts again, and finished the May stitcheries for Happy Scrappy Spring BOM designed by Kaaren at The Painted Quilt. You can click the pictures to get a better look.

I still need to make the sashing to go between the two first rows.

 It has not been just fun: I can't open The Bee in my Bonnet blog to get the mitten block instructions! I had only written down the measurements for the leaf blocks of row 7 when I lost the connection. Well, I have some measurements for the mitten blocks too, so I can start cutting, but that's it. I hope the problem will go away so I can get the remaining instructions for five more rows. I think I can manage borders and backing on my own. This has been such a fun quilt, so I really would like to finish it the way it was designed.

Nest building time has brought unusual visitors to the remains of last winter's bird seeds. Birds that are very common here but just not here at the edge of the village, like jackdaws and crows. I took this picture for you, Melanie, because you had not seen hooded crows very often before you saw them here. The map in the link shows that they are in fact rare in Western Europe and England, just like their all black cousin, Carrion Crow is rare here.

It has been so warm that we have been having our afternoon coffee on the veranda, equipped with binoculars (Mr. K), camera (me) and two bird books at least. On Thursday we spotted this little fellow, only because there are not yet leaves in the apple tree. After having consulted the books we decided this is the Lesser Whitethroat, Sylvia Curruca. I took several pictures, catching sometimes just the tail, or part of the wing through the twigs, but putting all the details together we could identify him. It is really hard to see the colour of a bird's legs, or to say there are or are not shades of a certain colour on the back or wings. Luckily the camera catches every detail.

Wish me luck with the missing rows for the Bee in my Bonnet. Hvae better luck with your projects!

Saturday 11 May 2013

Rows of the week and some spring pictures

This week I have been making mugs and Flying Geese. My geese are flying North now in Spring. We have seen some migrating cranes and geese. It is always something special when you see such big birds. My fabric geese are tiny and a bit blurry because I didn't think too much when choosing the fabrics.
I had to make some left-handed mugs as well. This quilt in progress is last year's row-along by Bee in my Bonnet, and I'm using mostly recycled fabrics and leftover scraps from dressmaking. Here are my six first rows. Next week I'll be raking leaves and knitting mittens!

Within the last few days our birches have dressed in light green lace. It looks so lovely after the long, long winter. Even the wind sounds softer now.
Wild white anemones cover the forest ground. The perfect pretty flowers to pick for Mother's Day tomorrow. When I was little, we used to pick the blue ones, liverwort, if they were out, because that's what was growing in our nick of the country.

I planted some Anemone Hepatica from my childhood home last summer in our yard, and I hope they will thrive here. Now the flowers are very pale, but if you look close enough and click for a bigger photo, you can just see a few of them. 

Mr. Pied Flycatcher is guarding his new home. It looks like many of our birdhouses have nest builders at work. Mrs. Flycatcher chose Silver Birch wallpapers for this house.

Our first daffodils are out! The little ones are Tete-à-Tete daffodils from my hanging flowerpot from last year of the year before. I buy them for Easter already in bloom, and when the snow is gone I plant them in the garden.

Sunday 5 May 2013

This week's rows and other finishes

This week I picked some apples and went zig-zag with my scrappy quilt. I managed to finish two more rows for the Bee in My Bonnet Row-along I'm making at my own pace.

My first four rows look like this, and next week I'm making some mugs and flying geese.

My blog remote control (DD) helped me find what was suddenly wrong with my pictures: The camera has settings for white balance, and somehow I had managed to change them. It made the pictures all blue, and I only thought it was the spring light, and tried to edit the worst of them. With her help I found the settings and at least the top photo looks OK now. The wind was blowing so much that I couldn't get the four rows lay still but had to take them in for a group photo shoot.
I made a little baby quilt for a friend who is going to have a baby next month.

The fabrics are all leftovers from the preemie quilts I have made earlier.

In the evenings I have been knitting dishcloths from some lovely cottons and bamboo cotton  blends.

Then I had to try this new to me traditional potholder pattern. I should have used heavier yarn, because the holes are so big you can burn your fingers if you use this for something really hot. This potholder is double-sided, the reverse is black. Can you find the missing stitch? I only noticed it now from the picture. I will go and add it, no problem. This will be my first entry for the Craft Olympics 2013 Special category.