Monday, May 28, 2012

A Time To Reflect


A hero is someone who has given his or her life
 to something bigger than oneself.  ~Joseph Campbell

"Perhaps they are not stars in the sky,
 but rather openings where our loved ones
 shine down to let us know they are happy." -Eskimo Legend

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Wild Wednesday

Today’s wild things include what’s blooming in the area.  The first is Firecracker Bush down by a local school.  These bushes require a little more water than these appear to be getting, but we should be going into the rainy season soon.
And the water plants are blooming  This one might be a pickerel – I tried to look it up, but there are a bazillion types of water plants that grow in Florida.  Yep…I said a bazillion and I meant it!
And to finish it up:  What’s your philosophy of what constitutes a weed?  This one has flowers of such a pretty color - are you sure it's a weed?
And that brings me around to what I’ve been sewing.  One of the members of the Sunshine Quilt Guild has started a Round Robin.  That’s where one person makes a center block or medallion and sends it to another person who adds rows or blocks all around.  That second person sends it on to a third who does the same.  That third person then sends it back to the originator to finish it up.  We have two groups going, so I should get quilts-in-process or centers from three different quilts.  This will be a creative challenge for me!  This is my center that will be mailed out soon:
And I made up a few lottery blocks, but the fabric is so thin that I think I’ll just keep them and not send them in.  Maybe I can toughen them up enough to endure the hard life of a donation quilt if I back them with muslin.  We’ll see.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Back in Business

I think I’ve gotten my blog and the picture storage situation settled, but this is the first post so we’ll see!

I have been in daily life crisis mode for a little while and am just now getting back to sewing.  Everything is back to its normal chaos and I’m happy.  Everyone is now well in my house (including the dog, who was sick) and that’s a very good thing.  I’m even thinking about putting out some of my brown-thumb sacrificial zinnias since I saw these while I was walking and they were thriving just a few blocks away from me:
And I was inspired by those zinnia colors to cut out the makings for a few Starz blocks (see the pattern here) that I should be able to sew up tomorrow.
I’ve also laid out the blocks and sashings for the 30s Reproduction fabrics that I am trying to use up.  The darker black and red prints kind of stand out, but I am pushing to use up the last of this lot, no matter what!  Maybe I’ll finish up this top, too, tomorrow.  Tomorrow is beginning to sound like a good day!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Blogging Issue

Blogger has thrown me for a loop.  Apparently, it is somehow affiliated with Google’s Picasa Photo Albums and I have exceeded my storage space for pictures.  I will have to pause to figure this one out and what it means to my future blogging.  Hope to continue soon (with pictures – what’s a quilt blog without pictures??!!).

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Today is May Day!

Because the Puritans frowned on such festivities in the New World, May Day is often overlooked in the US.  But the tradition has long been alive in Great Britain and Europe, and continues as a day of merriment for children. 

As with many customs, May Day, the “bringing in of the May” and crowning the May Queen have their roots in pagan rituals.  They all can be traced back to the Druids in the celebration of Beltane and the Romans and the worship of Flora.  Beltane represents the beginning of the half-year and the joy brought by the abundance of the spring and summer months.  Nov 1 and Samhaim begins the other half of the year.  After the Romans entered Great Britain, they brought their  5-day celebration, called Floralia (the worship of Flora, the goddess of fruit and flowers from Apr 28th to May 2nd ) and it was eventually interwoven into the seasonal celebration of the Druids.   With Christianity, the day became associated with agricultural feasts and since May 1 was the feast day of St Phillip and St James, they became the patron saints of agricultural workers.  The Roodmas was a Christian mass celebrated at midnight on May 1st.

Since ancient times, villagers have gathered flowers that grew in abundance in May to decorate a large tree that had been cut and had its branches removed to become the May Pole.  They also brought in flowers and fresh young branches to decorate their homes.  Today, children hold long, colorful streamers and dance around a pole while weaving in and out to decorate it.
I’m making some colorful and whimsical appliqué flowers and pots to join in the excitement of May Day.  This is a swap that is sponsored by The Scratching Post associated with Fat Cat Patterns.  Sindy Rodenmayer is changing her website and becoming more retail oriented, so if you haven’t visited recently, it’s worth another look.
These fabrics will be the basis for my swap pieces.  I’m busy cutting out the shapes today …  Wish me luck!