Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Melting...

After the socks, I decided to do an easy project.
Another Starflower dish cloth from KnitPicks.
It is good bike spectator knitting... 
Here is something that is new this year;  it planted itself.  It is a Crepe Myrtle plant on the left and a blueberry bush on the right.  We check the berries everyday and they are now getting blue and plump but not soft yet!  We haven't had a good display of the Crepe Myrtles and this year finally they are looking like they were worth keeping-they came close to being history several times! 
This bush is a favorite stop for our hummingbirds-it is as tall as me now and really too large for its spot but we won't move it until after it blooms.  
I just love the caladium! 
It's such a nice pop of color for greenery!
We hit 102F today just before the thunderstorm which is our most welcome summer pattern.
We enjoy the yard early in the day or later.
My brain doesn't like to bake!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Skipping Along

This is the 13th pair of socks this year! 
 I call this pattern the DNA traveling stitch.
KnitPicks Stroll Tonal
Size 2 needle
Only half of the skein is used which leaves enough for a pair of shorty socks!
These were knit while watching Will ride his bike and in the evenings before I crashed each day!
The lily opened up and he is the orange one!
So this year there were two yellow, two peachy/pink and so far one orange but as you see, more are coming! 
The Mandavilla is in full swing...these are so hard to photograph-they are bright red not pink!
The ground orchids are still blooming-it has been months and they are still so beautiful.
I love all the color in the pool area!
It is a feast for my eyes and my spirit. 
Nyki was helping me admire the  lilies!
In the studio, I finished the eighth Ohio Star block.
I am going way too fast on this quilt that I was going to do only so much each month to make it last but I keep wanting to do the next part! 
To put the brakes on the medallion quilt, I pulled out a modern print charm pack and cut it up to make windmills. 
Most of the prints had two so that I could make matching blocks.
Even the few that didn't match up exactly are fraternal enough to look good together.
Now I have a pile of these stacked near the sewing machine so I can whip off a block when I have a few minutes! 
After doing the Ohio Star blocks, these are a snap!
I will get 20 blocks from this charm pack which will be enough to make a lap quilt.
While Will loves this train, the Polar Express train, I am not such a fan.
The tracks do not fit properly and every other minute it would come apart and cause the train to derail.  Both Will and I were frustrated with it to put it mildly.
This morning, Bill used zip ties to anchor each track to its neighbor so they wouldn't separate any more!!!!  Will likes to get real close to the train as it rushes by-this is my view of his train-love!



Sunday, June 26, 2016

Focused and Finishing

I wasn't happy with my green blocks.  The green and the grey are just too close in color and tone so they don't pop like I envisioned.
So, I started over and made large flying geese blocks in twos. 
Then I arranged them every which way.  One nice thing about the design wall is I can look at it and live with it a bit before I commit! 
I sewed all the sections together on the central part of the quilt.
I could stop here because now I am caught up but....
I went ahead and cut out the Ohio star blocks and then made one to remember what all the piles are for!  I can sew a bit as I find the minutes throughout the week ahead. 
And then I did a lot of knitting.
I like this pattern and how the traveling twisted stitches look against the purl stitches and how it breaks up the stripes.
It was a nice day.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Steaming!

I sit and knit while Will rides his bike in the morning when it is cooler out...which is relative because it was 91F by 8 this morning!
But I finished this pair of socks for Marsel.
It has a mini cable running up the outside of each sock.
It is KnitPicks Stroll Tonal on #2 needles. 
I cast on another pair-this one for me in KnitPicks Stroll Tonal.
I cleaned out my sock drawer and picked a few colors to go with my winter pants.
This was one of the essentials.
I am knitting a cool  DNA-ish design up the side. 
We are starting to find the 'giant' grasshoppers on our plants.  These are 5' long and can devour a flowering plant overnight.  Not a welcome guest at all.  Will decided he wanted to keep one.
He is not fond of insects so this is the reason for his face-I asked him to hold the jar for a picture and he said, "No, Grandma, you hold it!
So I did! 
This is how you beat the heat!
A nice cool down after a long day.
(We hit 103F today with humidity almost that high!)

Friday, June 24, 2016

Quilt-Kitted

I bought this kit from Craftsy.  I was a bit cautious because some of the knit kits I ordered from them were duds.
This one is a hit.
The fabric is top quality.
The class that goes with the pattern is in video class format so you can see the whole plan and know what you are aiming for.
I was going to wait to begin this in July because it is a six month class (It ran from January to June which is why I was able to buy it at a discounted price.)  
BUT
July will begin with the TDF and I am just ready to jump in with this now!
I cut out fabric for a section and leave it by my machine so when I have 10 minutes, I put a few blocks together.
It has been a great start and I am looking forward to making my first
Medallion quilt!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Come on our Golf Cart Ride!

Bill has cleared and maintains paths all through the different terrains of our yard.
One of the highlights for me is this tunnel of Live Oaks.
 If you look toward the back on the ground, a branch of the tree grows on the ground and then back up toward the light.  It makes a great bump for us to enjoy!
Next, we visit the blackberry patch and the Maple tree forest.
The blackberries are done but one of us continues to look for them,
just in case! 
Way back is the pine forest.  When you sit and hold still you hear all the birds busy in the trees.
The pine trees even sing when there is a breeze.
It's wonderful. 
We drive quietly and slowly by the Sandhill Cranes so we don't scare them.
They are back here to enjoy the shade and to hunt frogs in the pond. 
This is the pond where we count lily pads and throw dirt balls.
Heading back toward the house is the desert area;  this was all sand with no greenery until Bill worked his magic and spread wood chips and lime into the sand to help grasses grow so it wasn't a wasteland any more. 
We do leave several (5 right now) hillocks of wilderness for the gopher tortoises.
We check them every day to see if anyone is home!
We see fresh sand where the tortoise is kicking out the sand but rarely catch anyone home.
Today we saw this one in the act of digging afresh!
Quite exciting! 
Also in this middle ground, Bill hauls dead trees for cutting into burnable chunks and burn pile stock.
I love the way the stump looks on this tree!
I hope you enjoyed our little tour!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

A Sock

Slower sock knitting happening but it is producing a sock!
He's learned a neat dare-devil trick! 
And is extremely proud of himself!
When he gets too warm, we cool off with a golf cart ride and some exploring by our little pond. 
We chuck dirt balls,
and try to count the lilies in bloom.
They close up by three in the afternoon so we have to catch them before they go to sleep!
(There are no 'gators in our little mud puddle-don't worry.)
The sandbox is a good place to settle down in the evening when it is in the shade.  
Another peachy blossom in the lily pot.  I have two more stems with buds and I can't wait to see what color they will be!  (I am guessing they will be the yellow and orange)

Sunday, June 19, 2016

See Me Bloom!

All around the yard, the rain lilies are doing their thing.
These smell lightly sweet;  a very pleasant smell! 
They bloom for several days but then a new cluster will spring up and there is a whole new batch of flowers to enjoy! 
The first pagoda plants are sending up their tall flower sets. 
These are absent of smell but since they are large and showy blooms, we will be forgiving! 
The banana grove has three blooms with such promising bunches of fruit!
These will be ready to pick in 4 months! 
The Florida Red Bay trees are in bloom and the aroma is stunning!
Almost good enough to eat!
We regularly pick the leaves for roasts in the crockpot! 
I don't know what these pretty lavender and pink blooms are in the swamp/lake out back.
They are pretty and sway beautifully with our balmy breezes now. 
The last of the buttonwood blooms are out for our viewing pleasure.  If you get close, you are in for an aromatic surprise, too, because they are very sweet to smell!
There is a new surprise every time we take a golf cart tour!

Saturday's Serenity

Ah, the butterflies are all stitched down and their antennae are in place! 
I stitched some of the antennae by hand and some by machine.  They all work out just fine to add a touch of whimsy! 
I finished stitching the rainbow stripes
                                                      and even sewed them all together!
Then I loaded the hexagon quilt onto the frame so it is ready for me when I think up a good design! 
And on the needles is a pair of socks for Marsel out of a leftover sock skein.  She likes her socks short so I am able to squeeze out another pair from the skein.  It is KnitPicks' Stroll tonal yarn.

I had a great Saturday-how about you?

Pumpking

 KnitPicks had a free pattern for this pumpkin dishcloth.   It was a bit fiddly at the bottom but stitch by stitch the pumpkin grew!  ...