Due to rain off and on all day yesterday and windy – I decided that the power washing could wait on the deck until late in the week when the temperatures will warm back up again!  I was lazy – for me that is – vacuumed the house and did laundry.  I wandered outside before the rain came to take a couple photos -

The dogwood in full bloom

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Up close

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I just love the Bleeding Hearts and had to take another photos of them, both of the plants have two stems of flowers now – well they survive the low temperatures early Tuesday morning? Don’t know – right now the only plant I thought I would cover is the hydrangea that has suffered so much – there are just too many plants out here to try to cover – it will be for about 2 hours below freezing according the weather channel – we will see – I will decide later today.  The roses even have buds on them – tiny though so they might be ok.  The clematis have buds but haven’t opened.

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Then it started to rain and was windy – I decided to get the back ready for the red/black quilt, I then pin basted and got to work on big stitch quilting – nothing fancy for this little table topper – I want it done.  Two of the flower blocks quilted around and on the flower and two of the checkerboard blocks finished also.  I will carry the grid into the red blocks for the background and the border.  This is going to go fast as you can see – the top is 45 x 45.  It was a rainy afternoon and I just sat on the couch and watched a movie while big stitching quilting.

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this is the back – I didn’t have enough red so I added the black to the sides – once the quilting is done and the top trimmed I will have a couple inches of black on both sides.  It looks wrinkly on the back but I pull it tight in the hoop as I go.

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and more on the Patchwork of the Crosses like usual!

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I am so glad I decided to wait until the beginning of May before I planted any tomato plants or seeds – I just knew with as weird as this past winter was that we just might continue to get some cold weather – glad it will be a short spell and sure hope it will be the last.

I am linking up to Judy at Patchwork Times today.

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Friday afternoon and Saturday I was  power washing my porch and decking – and I’m not done yet – I’m either very slow and/or this thing was just plain dirty – and large!!  I hope to do some more of it today but it depends on when the rain starts and really I might just need a break and finish it sometime later in the week!  It’s not like I need it for anything right now and it is just us using it.

This much done!

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And here you can really see where I stopped yesterday.

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this much left to do

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And the walk way around this garden spot.

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I’ve got way too big of space around here!!  I’m getting too old to keep up with it all.  This is what happens when you live in the country and have a little space around you!

On Friday night I got Patchwork of the Crosses rolled down and now I will work all the way across to finish up row 5 of the Crosses.  I am linking to Kathy’s Slow Stitching Sunday today.  It is going to rain so I will be quilting or sewing something today.

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While watching the evening news the last couple of days I got a little more applique done on Floral Fantasy:

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This is the fabric ready for the backing on the red and black checkerboard quilt with the applique flowers.  I just need to sit down and sew it – I will have time this week – Monday and Tuesday we have a cold front coming through – possibly down to freezing or below both nights – glad I didn’t plant anything yet.  I did buy some bedding plants but I have not planted them and will hold off so I can bring them in the house if I need to.

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This is how much I have had to cut my hydrangea down to – this is smallest it has been since I planted it 25 or so years ago.  I hope it grows back this spring.

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this is the size the same hydrangea was last year the same month.  I have never had to cut so much off of the plant as I did this year – the ice and cold winter sure did a number on it.  Last year I see I had a little garden planted – not this year!  I’m waiting until May Smile

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Don’t you hate it when you go to quilt group and forget something as simple as white thread!  Especially when it is the only project you bring and you are hand piecing!!  I grabbed my Diamonds are Forever box yesterday to run off for the morning and get there – start setting up my spot and no thread!    One of the ladies that lives only minutes from the church we meet at was nice  and  say she would run home and get some as there was no sense in me sitting just visiting for two hours with no stitching -  but as she was heading out the door another quilter was coming in – asked where she was off to – well no need she had white thread and was very willing to share – nice!  I was able to work after all and no one had to run anywhere.     This is where I am at now -

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Added to the box a nice big spool of white thread when I got home before I forgot!  I am linking to Splish Splash Stash today.

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Thursday nights work on POTC

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I have a few more photos to share – Peacocks – at the Gardens on Wednesday – so lovely and posing so prettily.

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this other one was at the entrance of the admittance building when we were on our way over to see the very pretty chapel that was built right next to the grounds about 8 years ago – no fee in that area so you can visit the church when you want to- I will post that tomorrow.  This guy gave us a show – he spread his fan out so beautifully and then settled down and walked away.

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And then posed prettily on a rock with his shiny feathers straight on down.  I wish I was good at design – the peacock would make a pretty wall hanging!

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I’m power washing the porch and the deck this weekend to get it nice and clean and ready for warm weather – of course in another couple weeks all the yucky pollen will have fallen and the porch will be covered in green & yellow pollen –  I will get the leaf blower out and blow it all off!  Of course on Tuesday a front comes through dropping us back to the 50’s daytime and 30’s at night for a day/night or two – but then back to the 60’s.  Sounds like it will be short lived.  Your weekend?  what are you doing?

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If you have missed out on getting a Craftsy class on sale here is another chance – this weekend!
Surprise! Craftsy has just announced a Spring Flash Sale for this weekend only! Discover huge savings on select online Craftsy classes, but for a very limited time. Visit Craftsy to reveal what classes are on sale, but hurry, this offer expires at 11:59 MT on Sunday, April 13, 2014!

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my link

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Since I showed the Floral Fantasy the other day being glue basted in place I have had time to applique one part of a flower in place – it is a start! Next is the yellow part and the gray – on to the stem and the leaves and one out of eight will be done – this is going to take awhile!

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A book arrived yesterday – I actually do not care for most of the photos of quilts in this book Sad smile I don’t like the colors selected to make the quilts so I am glad they also show a computer photo of each quilt in solids so you can get a better idea of how you would want to make it.   The quilt on the cover is the main one that I do like!  I am linking to Confessions of a Fabric Addict today.

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A small batting arrived today for the Red and Black checkerboard table topper – I usually do not use this brand but it was on sale so I got it – right now I think I will machine quilt it – I hope to get the backing together this weekend – I need to piece it as I didn’t have one piece large enough.  Anyone use this batting for hand quilting? How do you like it?

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I have been trying to keep up with my scraps as I said I planned to – these were all left over from the applique border on Floral Fantasy – now I just need to put them in the boxes.

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More photos from the Gardens on Wednesday:

a Japanese Maple all leafed out – they have a lot of these here – I always say I’m going to get one and never have.

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Another little brook of water.

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I am not sure what this plant is – a very large bush or a small tree – covered with these balls of green – something like a “snowball” tree but green?

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Bamboo growing next to a pine tree – bamboo does grow here in Arkansas and you see it often.

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This one is a “peony” tulip – I didn’t know there was a variety that looked so much like the regular peonies – they are about half the size though.

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Thankfully there are plenty of benches along the way to sit and rest if you wish to and bathrooms on each end of the park.  A Café towards the front of the park with various sandwiches and ice cream.

I have enough photos of the park for a couple more days so will spread it out a little – off to quilt group this morning – I skipped last week for some reason although it escapes me know why I didn’t go – possibly I just didn’t feel like it.  We got up to 84 degrees yesterday and near the same today I think.  I doing some outside stuff today – spray washing the porch is my number one job today for the afternoon – one side is getting a little bit of green mossy like stuff growing on it from the winter and around the flower bed too – so the spray washer will be put into action – I do hope to quilt some too though so hope I have new progress on Patchwork of the Crosses to show – I skipped two days – I better crack the whip and get myself busy!

If any of you are having neck/shoulder pains and stiffness from quilting – you know how we all seem to hunch over our sewing – we create a lot of tension in our necks and shoulders from poor posture – well anyhow I mentioned last week that I was getting a upper body massage and it worked wonders – the next day I hurt a lot but that is because of all work she did on me – within two days I was feeling a lot better – I had another one yesterday and plan on another in two weeks.  It is amazing to me how much a neck/shoulder massage helped my upper body muscles.  If you have a lot of pain in those areas you might want to think about getting one.  I get a 30 minute $30.00 massage.  I think I might continue this for a couple months, once every two weeks and see how it works – if it gets rid of my pain it will be well worth it. (this is Arkansas prices – your area might be higher/lower).  The lady that I go to says that a lot of people will have a monthly or twice monthly massage on their upper body and that it really seems to help relax those muscles.  This person is licensed massage therapist and does not work at a beauty shop as some do – she has her own business.  I have heard that some really don’t know what they are doing – she does.

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http://cdn.craftsy.com/course/1161/41_beginning-machine-applique-1390528122957.pngA class on sale at Craftsy right now that might be fun for some of you that want to do applique but are afraid to start!  Fun with Fusible Applique with Debby Luttrell is $19.99 at Craftsy right now.

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No Quilting

by Karen on April 10, 2014

in gardening, Travel

Yesterday we were out of town all day!  Really I didn’t get home until close to 8 in the evening and that was with stopping to get some Chinese food on the way home.  We spent the day at a Garden that is about 75 miles south of us called Garvan Woodlands Garden.  A very beautiful place full of plants and trails and we walked just about the whole place – we missed just part of one area.  It was a bit greener there being south of us but we are catching up quickly here with some leaves on the trees and the dogwood ready to open any day now.  It got up to 75 degrees!

When we first started out the building towards the gardens I thought we were too late to see the tulips look magnificent but we weren’t – the first ones that we came to didn’t look that good but then we went a little further and they met expectations.   So today this is not a quilting post but I will share some photos and I think I will share some for the next week or two as I took 174 photos! the wonders of digital cameras.

Some of the many azalea’s were open in full bloom – we were here last about 3 years or more ago and the azaleas were wonderful but we had missed the tulips – this time some azaleas were open but not near what they were last time – but we saw most of the tulips.  Even trade off.  All of these photos I took with my little digital point and shoot camera a Panasonic Lumix .

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Redbud tree

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Dogwood tree

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Small waterfalls

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And tulips!

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The lizards are out basking in the sun – yes spring is here!!  we might get a couple more cold nights but when these guys are around you know it is warming up.

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Another species.

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I will put in a few more photos all week of our day spent at the gardens and I’m sure I will get back to quilting this evening – it might be close to 80 today! wow what a difference a couple days make – of course next week is supposed to have a couple cool days back in!

Thanks for all the comments I received yesterday – I normally try to answer them all but I was just too tired so I didn’t answer any mail when I got home – if you needed an answer let me know Smile  I always appreciate all the nice compliments y’all say about my quilts and the work that goes into them.

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Floral Fantasy is now ready for stitching.  The entire border applique is glue basted in place.  I might have to move something here and there while I stitch and pin in place but overall this is is.  Keep in mind pieces will be smaller than they now appear as they have the seam allowance showing.  It will take awhile for the applique to be finished – give me a couple months at least if not more as I will continue to work on other projects in process.

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Part of my process includes rulers!

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Picture from the book – glue, scissors to trim here and there were needed, long nose tweezers – things I use to make the job go smoothly.

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Once I figure out where I want the pieces the glue goes on in dots – a little will hold it and if it does come loose sometime while I’m working – that is ok, just reapply.

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The applique was all prepped off and on yesterday during the day.  I continue to work on my Diamonds are Forever quilt off  and on  – I just don’t show it often as I haven’t really been working hard on it!  Here is a start on the 8th diagonal row.

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More work on Patchwork of the Crosses almost every night.  This is part of Row 5 that I worked on Monday night.

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Little quilting will get done today – near 70 today!  After several chilly windy days I’m ready for an outside day.  I am linking to Esther’s blog  and Freshly Pieced Modern  and Sew Fresh Quilts today if you want to look at some pretties

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