Saturday, April 30, 2016

Kitty update

All of our domesticated pets enjoy the company of us humans and usually faithfully follow along with garden chores.

Here Mr. Boots sits near the gazebo, supervising weed work.

Perennial grasses are trimmed back as Millie supervises.  She and Boots get along well and share the horse barn for their home.

One of Millie's favorite spots is behind the house where the afternoon sun and soft evergreens provide the perfect place for a nap.

Millie (in the corner) and Boots are peeking over the edge of the deck -- checking to see how close the time might be for another meal!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Spring weeding

All of our perennial gardens require attention in the spring. 

The perennial grasses on the path to the gazebo garden are attractive in all seasons. In the spring they are trimmed to allow the new growth room to spring forth a new year's display.

Our red raspberry plants are trimmed in the fall and totally cleaned out, weeds and all, in the spring.  They are a lot of work, but produce a long, delicious crop right up to the first frost.

The refuse will join our burn pile and, after it dries out, will be incinerated.  The old tractor comes in handy for another farm job.

Another sign of spring is large snapping turtles looking for a proper place to leave their eggs.  They traverse our pastures and lawns.  As we mention, they are large and determined.  Our cats leave them a broad path and do not come near to investigate --- smart kitties!

Friday, April 22, 2016

Pond Cleaning

Like many cycles in country life, Spring brings the pond cleaning ritual on our two ponds.  This year included a warm, sunny day.

The "Clearly Acquatics" crew led by co-owner Dave Young has been performing this task for almost 20 years.  Bill has supervised their job from the deck and claims real experience in this important function.

The cobblestone lining adds real beauty to the pond, but is very hard to clean as the smaller rocks often get sucked up the hose and block progress.  Every task on the farm presents a challenge.

The lily pond on another part of our property is protected by lattice and netting to filter the summer heat.  The gazebo, covered by the wisteria vines, is visible (sort of) in the right background.

The water lily plants are fertilized and placed along the bottom of the rubber lining.  Some of them are also 20 years old and are nearing the end of producing flowers.

In the waterfall pond off the deck, fish and water are returned to the pond.  We lost a few fish this winter and will soon be off in search of some replacements.  Our well water is used to refill both of our cleaned ponds.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

News from Paducah

I was very pleased to receive notice that my Blueberry Green Teas quilt won an Honorable Mention in the Small Wall Quilts Longarm Machine Quilted category at the AQS Paducah show in Paducah, KY, this week.

Blueberry Green Teas (41h X 56w)

Monday, April 18, 2016


We are fortunate to have secured the services of Larry Harloff, an area master painter.  He does all the important painting for the Morman historical and modern buildings and is booked up far into the future.

He has worked on our property extensively with many large projects.  This year he is working on our two 40+ year old barns with roofing aluminum sealing and white paint side panels and red trim as needed.

He also matched paint for our deck railing and planters, along with two benches.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Jet Trails

Some late afternoons with clear skies are highlighted by numerous jet trails that spread out in wispy profusion while still maintaining their trademark shape.

These views are from a step outside the studio looking toward the southwest.  Vistas like this serve as inspiration for my series of jet trail quilts.

I'm very pleased that one of these pieces, Jet Trails #10, was purchased by the National Quilt Museum and is hanging in the Bank of Paducah.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Peeps Meeting

Nancy brought this quilt top for us to see that she found at Crafts Bits & Pieces.  The red squares dominate the pattern of nine patches.

This is Pat's bowtie quilt that she'll be teaching in some up-coming classes.  She's added the blue border with skinny line piecing since we saw it last month, and we think the border adds movement to the piece. 

Nancy showed us this 3-yard piece of hand-dyed silk noil that she bought at Craft Bits and Pieces and has plans to use in making a new jacket.

It turns out that the fabric was dyed and foil stamped several years ago by our friend Nancy Bailey from down state.  She was interested to find out that it had made its way up here and will be turned into a beautiful garment.

Nancy showed us her progress on finishing this top made from Kaffe Fassett fabrics.

Friday, April 8, 2016


We have a long history of growing orchids.  Some were purchased in Florida and made the long trip by auto as we pounded up I-95.  Others were purchased locally from various sources, including this large pink beauty that came from Home Depot.

This specimen reminds one of the great beauty and profusion of this plant group.  It looks like something from the movie, "Little Shop of Horrors." 

The late afternoon sun bathes this display in the southern window of the basement apartment.  We hope to continue this project for many years.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Spring Snow

Snow that covers the ground has been a rarity this year.  The April contribution was more than we had in November and December.

You can see the daffodils peaking up in the foreground, bent over under the weight of the snow.

Our front yard pines always look good with a mantle of white.  This did not last long, and we are already on to a new season.

The wonderful river birch (my favorite tree!) shows off its paper bark under any weather or time of the year.  It sheds its bark and gains replacement coverage in a continuous cycle.

Friday, April 1, 2016


This is the second quilt done for the challenge group.  It is also a 12-inch square format, and the theme is reflections.

I had this piece of fabric in my stash that I had made in a class where we folded, clamped, and dyed cotton fabrics.

It reminded me of reflections of trees at water's edge, much like I see on our small lake in the Adirondacks.

I painted  the tree shapes using All-Purpose Tsukineko Inks.  It was the first time I opened the inks since I bought them at the Houston show in 2012 -- high time to try them out!

I added the quilting using my Janome sewing machine.