Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Flights of Fancy

 Because baby toes get cold......who says a square can't be round?!
 The Shetland yarn is on the needles!  I'll admit, lace doesn't look exciting in this state but it will after blocking which is part of the magic of lace.
 You can see a little of the design in the top of the shawl, I am now transitioning to the lattice portion of my design.
 The yard is a visual delight-all the red/orange/coral flowers I love are in bloom!
 And attracting clouds of butterflies!
 I have discovered 3 kinds of Swallowtails and this orange one which I am not sure of yet.
 This is the Bromeliad in bloom.  This part of the plant is about 12" across.  Stunning.  The butterflies like the reds as much as I do.  (Do not mess me up with any 'facts' on butterflies not being attracted by color, I won't believe it!)

Monday, August 26, 2013

Multifaceted M

 Mosaic of broken glass.
 Magnolia tree
 Mummy of soapstone.
 Marbles in the game tin.
 Mechanic maintenance on the tractor.
 Making bars of soap.
                          
 Moebius shawl.
 Mum.
 Mantel.
Maidenhair fern.

Mandavilla.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

What Have I Been Doing?

 We had a beautiful view of the 'Blue Moon'.
 Bill picked a branch from the Date Palm tree so I could try a batch of jelly from it.  (The jam batch of two years ago was not a success.)
 Doesn't it look delicious?  The fruit are super sweet.
 The branch looks cool when it is empty of all its fruit.  I was tempted to keep it but it is large at 2 1/2' and not really.......well, you know.
 I got a large pot of fruit and simmered it all day to make a mash so I could strain it for jelling.

Suffice it to say, I scorched the bottom and ruined the whole batch.   Have I ever mentioned I do not shine my brightest in the kitchen......
 A friend gave me a  package of these pre-cut polar fleece fringed squares.  I put it together and have a wonderful throw!
 I worked on a new outfit for Aria all week-she turns one this coming week!
 The diaper cover is so cute!  I have to get buttons before I can say, 'done'  on this !
 I did successfully bake some more discs for wind chimes!
 Even drilled the holes and strung them together!
 Another batch of soap is drying in the mold.  This one is orange scented and also has orange peel exfoliant added.  It smells wonderful so far!
 I have finished the Shetland wool, all 1,688 yards of fingering weight wool!  I can get started on the newly designed shawl this week!
 I watched an old program about Knitting featuring Cat Bordhi about starting toe-up socks with a garter stitch square so I gave it a try with some left over sock yarn!  This is a little girl's sock.....
it is cute and an easy beginning!
Our banana trees have come back full steam from the frost of the winter and we have quite the grove now.  They are about 10' tall.
And the best thing is we have new bananas growing!  They are early enough that we don't have to worry about frost taking them!   I will keep watching them so I can get a picture of the bloom fully opened, too.  As it is right now, the bud is about 15" long.

Monday, August 19, 2013

LoveLy Letter L

 My laborer catching up on the shed construction with new lumber...in the languid sunhine.
 My little lemon tree without lemons.
 Bill's Loquat tree.  It will have fruit in the Spring.
 The lattice we built for the bougainvillea that gets frozen back every winter and struggles the rest of the year!
 Here is the lye I use for making soap and the label I make for the finished bars.  See the lather on the soap ball?  I make these from the scraps of each batch.
 Legumes are best raw!  The south is known for its boiled peanuts-yuck!  Who would ruin a good peanut when you can eat them raw?!  We buy them by the pound from side-of-the-road vendors.
 Lace!  This is my grandest work so far-a 60" circular shawl that is from a doily pattern.
A lead fishing weight I found on the beach-it weighs 4 ounces.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Flitting Like a Butterfly

 Throughout the day, I flit from one project to another interspersing time doing chores to keep the house running smoothly and neatly.  I finished one pair of socks from leftover fingering weight yarn for oldest grandson.
 I have been studying an online course for designing shawls and took my final-designing my own pattern.  Now to knit it!
 I cut out a pile of neutral squares and triangles for another table runner.
 I spun another bobbin of the Shetland fiber.
 Three four ounce skeins awaiting a knitter........I will be using one of these skeins for the new shawl!
 I whipped up another batch of soap-this one is a special request for Bill who wanted one scented with patchouli.  We will see how 'smelly' it is when finished in a few days!
And another pair of socks are off the needles.......

While it seems that I flit from one project to another, I flit all the way to the finish line and that means I do have a method to my meanderings!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Dog Days of Summer

 The Yucca plants are no longer in bloom but now they all have this edible fruit growing!
There are clusters on the top of each plant. 
 Each fruit is about 5 inches long; the size of a large pickle.
I picked one to see what it looks like inside-it is NOT ripe enough to eat at this stage.  We will keep sampling to see what happens!  FYI-The Yucca plant was first used to make soap by the Native Americans as it contains saponins which is where we get saponification from!
One pair of rainbow socks finished! 
 I got over my freeze at the quilting frame.  It is all done!  I got my inspiration for this table runner from Lynn Majidimehr's Flower Show Quilts book.  I will be making a series of this type of runner!
 Another skein of Shetland in the pile.  It is a very good way to stay cool when the temps have been so high all week!
And if it isn't steamy outside, it is pouring!  We are needing this amount of rain and it is beautiful to see.
The cats have been lazing on the floor to cool off and stay dry-they tolerate the heat more than the rain!

Now to Bind...

                                        Bow tie is off the frame and waiting for its binding. I'm hoping to get to it in the nex...