Monday, December 31, 2012

Black Swallowtail Caterpillars

It's been a wild time lately for the 2 Eastern Black Swallowtail Caterpillars that have been hanging around on my dill.  They come out when the sun shines and feed on the dill and hide away at night.  They haven't gotten large enough to go into their chrysalis yet but I am hoping they will do so.  The weather has been so windy and the cold has been creeping in so who knows what will happened.  I also have another 2 chrysalis from the Eastern Black Swallowtail.

And these flowers are still blooming!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

quilt blocks for Sunshine Quilters

Each month Sunshine Quilters has a block lottery where you send in blocks to one of our members.  For each set that you send in, one block goes into the pile for Sunshine tops and one into a group for the winner of the block lottery.  Your "ticket"  is the sets of blocks you make and at the end of the month a name is drawn out to receive the blocks.  I have been going through all of my stash and blocks looking for extras, samples and orphans blocks.  I have some 12" blocks but also a number of  9" blocks.  Since they need to be 12" I have been adding borders to the blocks to bring them up to size.  I have a total of 25 blocks to donate to the pot and all are to go to Sunshine.  I also don't enter my name into the drawing because I am trying to pare down  and not take on any extra projects.  Here are a sampling of the blocks.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas

A posting of some of the fabric Christmas postcards I received as part of a swap on Postcard Pizzazz.  It's always fun to see the exciting mail I receive.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Boxed Squares Quilt

Here's the last quilt I am quilting for 2012.  It's a top I put together this fall.  Love the colors.  It will probably be donated to Wrap-A-Smile but I haven't made a final decision yet.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Thoughtful Thursday - Sunrise

“Sunrise paints the sky with pinks and the sunset with peaches. Cool to warm. So is the progression from childhood to old age.”  ― Vera Nazarian

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Cape May Point

For several weeks I have been going over to the point to find the Red Crossbills and I haven't had any luck which is usually what happens to me when I try to "chase" a bird.  Today I decided to just go over and see whatever crossed my path.  I started my morning at Alexander Avenue beach where I found my brother-in- law birding with a group of friends from PA.  In 27 years I have never run into him by accident.  There were about 8 birders peering through their scopes over the ocean.  Turns out there was a Dovekie in those scopes and graciously let me have some looks also. This as a life bird for me.  After we split up I went up to the beach access at St Pete's and was thrilled to get some great looks at a flock of Red Crossbills that were feeding in the pines along the dunes.  They stayed for about 10 minutes before the flock just up and flew away down the dunes.
From there I went our on the beach by St Mary's to see the Common Eiders and the immature King Eider that having been hanging out near there the past few weeks.  I had good looks but poor pictures as the light wasn't good and they kept moving further out in the ocean.  So then it was over to the State Park where I saw a total of 6 butterflies.  3 of them were Red Admiral Butterflies while the other 3 I was never close enough to ID.  This butterfly sure is worn with lots of chunks of wings missing.  I also saw the Bafflehead Duck that has been in one of the ponds for a few weeks - again good looks but not good on the pictures between the light and the distance away from me.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Sunshine Quilting

Frogs #2 Quilt (above) & Scrappy 9 Patch (below) quilted today for Wrap-A-Smile

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Second Sunday Quilting - Sunshine Quilters

Saturday was gray and rainy so it was a great day to stay inside to decorate the Christmas tree, bake some Christmas cookies and work on some pieceing. I saw a top online I really liked that was in a quilting challenge that looked to be a great top for a charity quilt.  The quilt was made by Rebecca L who lives Iowa.  I worked on it again today and was able to get the top finished.  Now to pick out a backing and start quilting.  I love how the top turned out.  It's really colorful to brighten the spirits of any child.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Fabric Postcards

For several years I have been making fabric postcards that are sent through the mail to other fiber artists.  Some of us belong to a Yahoo group Postcard Pizzazz that arranges the swaps.  It's fun to make the postcards and you get to use your imagination when making them.  The time investment is much less then making a wallhanging or quilt.  It is always fun to receive one in the mail.  Here are some of the postcards I have made for the Christmas Swap.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Butterflies in my Yard

Hard to believe it's December.  Temperatures are in the mid 50's.  Most of my plants in my gardens haven't recovered from the winds and (possibly) the salt spray from Superstorm Sandy but there are a few that continue to bloom - Snapdragons and 2 species of Gaillardia Blanket Flower.  The Blanket Flower is attraching a few butterflies that are still around.  I have seen Painted Lady, American Lady and a Red Admiral in the past few days.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Sunshine Quilting - Wrap-A-Smile Quilts

Quilting for Wrap-A-Smile is my preferred charity project that I have worked with for years.  I am a member of an online quilting group called Sunshine Quilters. Every second Sunday of each month we have a quilting bee where we work together on quilting projects.  Now we aren't really together as we are all in our own homes which are spread throughout the States but we are all together in spirit as we sew for the children. This month I did some first Sunday quilting by quilting 2 tops I had pieced in October.  They are pictured here. The first features frogs and the second features skateboards. These quilts would be especially good for a little boy.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Barred Owl - Cape May Point Sate Park

Today I went over to the Point to bird.  I have been hoping to see some Crossbills up close.  I have seen them several times along the dunes but never close enough to get a good look.  Today was no exception as the Crossbills were up too high to get a decent look.  While I was along the dunes I saw several butterflies - 2 Monarchs and a Painted Lady.  Then I heard that there was a Barred Owl along the path in the State Park so over I went to see if the owl was still around.  Success - it's a lifer for me and only my second owl.  My first owl  observed in 2010 was a Great Horned Owl sitting on nest with 2 Owelets also at the State Park.