More green…

Spring is still holding….

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So Relic would like to take you on another tour of our greening world. We still can’t do much – the ground is far too muddy, but both of us enjoy poking around.

Bulbs continue to poke up here and there, though I still can’t tell what anything is. Except that bottom photo – I’m pretty sure those are grape hyacinths!

Many of the summer blooming perennials are really getting going – Clockwise from top… Campanula, Dianthans, Bee Balm and Speedwell.

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I thought this Leopard’s Bane I bought last year was toast (it didn’t like the humid summer) but the roots must have taken because it’s popped back up.

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This Bachelor Buttons is a favourite of the bees, so I’m happy to see these tiny, fern-like leaves emerging.

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And I love seeing the rosettes of the sedum start to emerge. I’d love to snag some different shades of sedum this year.

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Maybe in a week or two we’ll be able to get in there and clean out all the dead stuff, and the green can really start to thrive…

FO: Wren’s Birthday Ensemble

Since Lynnrina didn’t work out, I fell back on a pattern I knew I could trust: Wee Liesl.

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In fact, it was the very first thing I made for Wren, right after she was born. It was time she had a new one. Just like the first, I kept the sleeves short and omitted the garter ridge for a smoother look. I also made it a little shorter – it’s more of a cropped cardi now – perfect for wearing with sundresses (as I well know!)

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I had these cute little star buttons in the stash and they were just perfect to finish it off. I’m really lamenting the fact that you can’t see the sparkley yarn in the picture, but c’est la vie!

Now, for the dress.  I told you I had some nice peach seersucker in the stash. Sadly, I did not have enough to make her one like her Christmas dress. Those ruffles take a lot of fabric. So I opted for something simpler…

IMG_0201I didn’t have a pattern, so I just pulled some standard toddler measurements from the internet, and winged it. The result is a very simple, but effective little shift dress.

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I lucked out and had the perfect shade of peach ribbon in the stash for the straps. Some wooden beads from my beading stash gave a nice bit of weight and decoration.

And here’s the set together.

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A perfect little birthday ensemble made entirely from the stash!

Getting fancy

Next due for some sewing love was Cat Fancy. I got the hardest blocks done about a month ago, so it was definitely time for the next step.

Like the first block, this block started with geese

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I quite enjoy making geese, and a definitely see a geese quilt in my future. (In fact I’ve been cutting scraps in appropriate goosey size… perhaps another L&E project).

While this block wasn’t quite as complicated as the first, it still had a fair amount of pieces. And I kept sewing those darn geese on in the wrong direction. But after much ripping and resewing… I had four of these big beauties done.

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They need to need to be sewn together with the first blocks…

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And then there’s a thin, pieced border all around, and another big border (which is mitred!) and this top will be wrapped up.

I have to say, if Mom hadn’t bought the kit for me, I probably wouldn’t have attempted this. It’s much more involved than any other quilt I’ve made. And while I’m glad to have done it… I’m quite happy to stick to simpler quilts in the future. But it’s nice to know I can, if I want…

 

Fresh air

As some of you noted, it doesn’t take much for my backyard to green up. It gets sun all day and has nice tall fences to shelter it, so if the weather is right, it’s the perfect little spot for growing things.

The last few days have been wonderfully spring like. I’ve seen robins and grackles, and I’m hoping against hope that we’ve seen the last of the snow. Though it will still be another month before I even have a chance of seeing blooms, I just can’t resist going out and poking around in the mud every day.

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In addition to the spring bulbs, all my lilies are poking through. It looks like I’m going to have to do some thinning this year.

I have both Siberian Irises (left) and Bearded Irises (right) in the gardens and both are doing well.

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I was surprised to see my hollyhocks coming back – they had a really rough year last year. Hopefully, they will do better this year.

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My oriental poppies are looking very robust, which thrills me to no end! I had a hard time getting these to take.

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It looks like I’ve finally had success with getting foxglove to reseed too! I’m very excited about this. I adore the foxglove. And so do the bumblebees (which I love as well!).

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I was also worried about my Bleeding Heart. While it’s done beautifully for several years, by last fall it wasn’t looking very good. But there’s some teeny tiny sprouts coming up under all that mulch. Phew!

And of course, while I was getting some much needed fresh air, the  boys were too.

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Relic loves to be outside, but he especially loves it when we’re out with him. He was just a total ball of energy, and was burning it off with a good wrestling match with Burton.

Of course, I’m pretty sure it was all a ploy. During the match, Burton got his leash unhooked from his harness, and by the time I noticed, the pair of them were heading out of the yard, right toward Burton’s favourite climbing tree…

Thankfully, they didn’t make it, but I can forsee them keeping my on my toes all spring and summer-long!

Four by four

I found some time to make two more blocks for the Time to Sew quilt.

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This isn’t quite how they will be laid out – there will be sashing, and more colour variation… but darn these look good like this. That’s the thing with quilting… once you start putting blocks together, you start seeing all these alternate patterns. I love that star in the middle with the clipped corners… and the arrows pointing towards the centre… so many ideas!

But I have to stay focused! So instead of going off on a tangent, I prepped the pieces for the next four blocks.  Because of the way you make the HSTs, and the number of prints in my layer cake, I’m able to essentially make four blocks at a time (two matching pairs like you see above).

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They still all need to be trimmed to 4.5 inches, but once that’s done, they next four blocks will go together easy peasy. Hopefully I can find some time to do that this week!