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Saturday, April 29, 2017

Still under the weather

I am still battling a miserable cold so not much has been getting done except lots of lying down and napping.  I hope to be up and around some time this week.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

April Days

Is it me or is the month of April moving rapidly? Some days I feel like I can't keep the days of the week straight, for me that's one of the draw backs of not working outside the home any longer. I know last week was the Easter holiday, which means traffic gets a little heavier, the supermarket gets busier and the beaches will be full of tourist here in Florida.  Spring has settled in for it's brief time before the heat of summer arrives here in Florida. In a few weeks many of the 'snow birds" will head back north for the summer and I'll say a farewell to several friends for a few months knowing most will return in the late autumn just when things cool off here and get quite cold in the northern part of the county.

This month has me planning a few new embroidery projects to keep me busy, I have  a few of my own designs and a few kits to fill in on days when I either need a break from a project or to fill in while I am preparing fabric and gathering floss for a project.

Last week while shopping at Joann's to pick up a few craft supplies for  my great niece Tessa, I came across a display of Zenbroidery kits and floss packs. 
Tree and Sewing Mandala
You may recall I posted this Peace Symbol Zenbroidery kit I purchase online a few weeks ago:
Peace Symbol
I just love it and I know it will be quite colorful, (a few other members in The Year in Stitches 2017 challenge are doing the same kit).  So when I found an entire section in the embroidery supplies aisle filled with Zenbroidery kits I had to buy a few, and those 40% and 50% coupons made them such a bargain. The kit includes pre-printed fabric and needle only.  I did purchase 2 floss embellishment packets which includes embroidery thread/floss, sequins, beads and beading thread, which I will pass on
Embellishment packets
to Tessa she's 4 and loves all those glittery bits and bobs for crafts, they will work nice with the stack of felt I gave her, she is such a sweet child you should have heard her excitement when she opened her package and saw the little pink scissors, squealing "My own scissors, aunt Debbie gave me my own scissors." I wish I had my camera out to record her excitement and her happy dance oddly enough the scissor handles was all she saw but my she was one happy child.

The most recent hand embroidery piece I am working on is a Venus of Willendorf, I think she is going to be a fine addition to my Goddess series. She is either going to be a prayer flag or banner I haven't decided quite yet.
Willendorf
I am stitching her on a neutral paisley print cotton fabric using mostly 2 strands of DMC floss.
paisley neutral
I love paisley prints and I thought this would be perfect for the piece, if she is to be a prayer flag I will fray the edges and if she is to be a banner I will back it with the a plain muslin or the same fabric. 



Monday, April 3, 2017

April is Off to a Good Stitching Start

April came in so quickly I think my head is still spinning with the same old question of where does the time go?

Today I have a short answer, for me it goes with each and every stitch I make when working on a hand embroidery project. I lose myself completely in my stitching, my breathing and heart beat get slower, my muscles relax, I achieve a meditative state.

I pulled out the Lunar Blossoms kit from Cozy Blue I bought a few months ago and finished the stitches on Saturday.
Stitched Moons
waiting for the first stitch
I love this little Moon phases piece I will finished it later this week as a hanging in a hoop.  I love the little sashiko look it has so I ordered the iron on transfer so I can make another using a different background.  You can also order just the pattern download. The kit came with the printed fabric, needle and embroidery floss. I ordered mine from the Etsy shop  https://www.etsy.com/shop/cozyblue
I will be starting on this Zenbroidery kit as part of the 1 Year of Stitches 2017 and the A Year in Stitches challenges I am participating in this year.
waiting for stitching
the kit
Several members of the two groups are doing this pattern, the kit includes the printed fabric and a needle.
I will link my post today at http://www.supermomnocape.com/vintage-embroidery-monday-stitchery-link-party-104/
Happy Stitching and Happy Day to All of You!

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Trekking the Trails

It has been a lovely few weeks here in central Florida, plenty of blue skies and bright sunshine with temps in the mid 80's feels more like early Summer than Spring but that's Florida.

Last Friday I took to the road and drove to Ormond by the Sea, it was in the low 70's with quite a brisk breeze blowing, a perfect day to soak in the sunshine and listen to the tide ebb and flow while birds and gulls glided over head.
the ocean calls to me
I think these are the biggest waves I have seen on a Florida beach in the 22 years I have lived here.
white capped waves rolling in
The ocean was a bit rough and wave after white capped wave rolled in leaving behind a heady foam on the sand.
On Monday I trekked the trail at my favorite park making my way into the M.O.M.S. area which is such a serene place to visit.
Memories of Missing Smiles
When you first pass through the gate you have a view of the waterfall feature in the garden which is quite lovely.
As you walk along the path there are little walkways off the main path you walk through an arbor and take the brick way to several benches, a bird bath and some benches, lots of plants and even a bird house or two.
Jasmine on the arbor
Some flowers in bloom
something is inside
There are quite a few memorial stones along the stream and at the bottom of the reflection pool but I decided not to post anything that can be read.
There are benches throughout the pathways and several to view the reflection pool as well as the waterfalls.
The stream runs over and around the river stones from another waterfall at the top of the reflection pool.
I was delighted to snap a photo of the ever elusive cardinal that was flitting from tree to tree, it's rare that I get a photo of a cardinal believe me I try every year in my backyard and very rarely get one.
Today on my walk I was greeted by a flock of I think egrets and herons pecking their way across the meadow without concern that people were passing by, they just kept moving along the grass.

I'm not sure where my next walk will take me but you can be sure I will have my trusty camera or cell phone along to snap a few photos to share.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Wednesday Walk

Today I brought along my cell phone so I could use the camera on my walk to take a few new photos at my favorite park where I walk daily.
The weather was perfect for a walk after a cloudy early morning gave way to bright sunshine and March winds later in the morning.
The above photo is of two fat crows walking, cawing and pecking about totally ignoring the woman with her cellphone snapping a photo, I love watching crows even though in my garden they can really be a nuisance and they love raiding the bird feeders, still I put out corn and peanuts for them and the squirrels.
This park, Jervey Gant, has some huge oak trees when I walk I lose my thoughts just looking at them, today I stepped beneath the largest tree to take some photos of the multitude of branches that have grown so heavy when the touched the ground they have taken root.
In the photo below I am now under all the leafy branches taking a shot of the trunk which looks just like any other tree trunk.
 until you look around and notice the branches have touched the earth and planted themselves there.
Every now and them I bring a blanket and spread it under the tree and just breathe enjoying my quiet communion with Mother Earth and this majestic tree.

My walk wouldn't be complete without stopping at the water station and refilling my water bottle.
I like this little water station with the spot on the end for water bottles, it's located right near the volley ball and basket ball courts and right off the trail.


Sunday, March 19, 2017

A Freeze the Week Before Spring, Slow Sundays and a Sneak Peek.

We had our usual cold snap before Spring last week with temps dropping to 28 degrees one night and 32 the next, I was keeping an eye on the Accuweather website for the weather report each day and happy to say I remembered to cover all my plants.
Moved everything together 
at my entryway
Stuff a few under the table
I uncovered everything yesterday afternoon, place them all in full sun and so far all the plants look fine a few a bit faded and one of the hibiscus is spindly but it keeps blooming so I don't want to cut it back.
Uncovered 
spindly hibiscus before the freeze
the spindly hibiscus after the freeze
The tomato plant has been bursting with fruits though the leaves are looking a little worse for wear hopefully a few days of warm sunshine will help.
tomatoes
more tomatoes

and still a few more tomatoes
On the hand embroidery update the stitching on the greenman was completed last weekend, now I am deciding whether to frame him or make a wall hanging.
I posted the photo on my Facebook page and my friends tell me he looks quite 1968 mellow it took me a moment to understand what she meant, she's right.  Those spaces on the side and along the top and bottom are part of my design I'm going to add fabric leaves to the piece regardless if I frame him or make a wall hanging, at least that's how I saw it in my mind when I began the piece.
I will be linking up today at Kathy's Quilts today for Slow Sunday Stitching here is the link to check out what other bloggers are slow stitching today:
 https://kathysquilts.blogspot.ca/2017/03/slow-sunday-stitching_19.html

Here is a Sneak Peek at an upcoming project I have in the works, the project is a jewelry making project I ordered these charms about a week ago and they arrived on Friday.
elemental charms
 Several will be used for a jewelry project and a few may be put to use on the elemental goddess hand
embroidery I did a few weeks ago so I can give it the finish I had envisioned.
I will be joining the linky party at Supermom No Cape on Monday why don't you click the link and have a look at other blogger's wonderful projects and perhaps grab one or two of the free vintage embroidery patterns sure to bring a smile to your face.
http://www.supermomnocape.com/

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Spring Forward

Yes this year I remembered to turn the clocks ahead one hour!  It was quite simple to remember since I was still up at 2:00 a.m. and in a snap it was an hour later.  It was one of those nights where my brain was just buzzing along with my needle and thread.

I left off my stitching on the Greenman about a week ago as other things needed to be done and there were days I just wasn't in the mood to stitch, here is where I was yesterday before I began to stitch.
bottom corner started
And here is where I finished last night (actually in the wee hours of 1:45 a.m.)  I will be putting the final embroidery stitches later today. 
the final stitches
I didn't make it to the wire wrap class yesterday I was puttering around the garden and lost track of time, Its over a 90 minute drive and I didn't want to rush to get there so I'll try to take the class the next time around.
I will be linking my post over at Kathy's Quilts today joining other bloggers for some Slow Sunday Stitching here's the link:https://kathysquilts.blogspot.com/2017/03/spring-forward.html

I'll also join Super Mom No Cape at http://www.supermomnocape.com/vintage-embroidery-monday-stitchery-link-party-101/
 Click on the links and have a look at what other talented bloggers are working on.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Early Garden Update and Spring Festival

This week I was feeling more myself so I was able to get out and about to run some errands and have a little me time so I moved a few things around the garden adding a few new plants and checking on the plants I already have. The peach colored Hibiscus is a newly added plant I purchased this week, I love the color though I did miss taking a photo yesterday when the flower was fully opened, it was stunning so I'll have to try to get another this week she is full of buds. 

The red hibiscus from last year is blooming and the others have buds which should open this week.  I do need to transplant all of them into large pots this year. I plan to purchase a few more hibiscus plants this year and at least one in yellow.  These flowering plants do so well in my garden so I'd like add more of them.

I purchased a few succulents and later on I will place them in a terracotta dish, I haven't had much luck with succulent plants in the past but I'm going to try again, my garden get so much sun I'd like to add a few cactus plants too.  

As you can see the rhododendron continues to bring forth flowers each day though her time is rapidly coming to an end for this year, I want to add a few azaleas to the garden as well in a variety of colors.

I purchased a patio tomato plant with a built in tomato cage for several reasons, the first to save time it has two small fruits in the center of the plant, the other reason is I am experimenting with the sun light hours and shade in the front of my house where I am hoping the plants will do better then they have in passed year when in the backyard where the sun beats down most of the day and the third reason is I am clearing, cleaning and redesigning the back yard garden area so its convenient to have the plants all in the front for watering.

I'm supposed to take a wire wrap class later today it's a 90 minute drive to shop where it's being held so I spent the early morning hours puttering in the garden, tomorrow I'll take in the last day of the 

Spring plant festival where I hope to find a few new things for my garden, but not too many because I'm just not sure what I want to do.  Though I will be on the hunt for some bamboo plants to add to my garden area along the fence, last year I bought 3 new bamboo plants and they are doing quite well so a few more would be ideal.

It's been another crazy week here at casa Deborah, the days are moving so fast time just gets away from me on the up side of things I did have time to write some letters, read a few magazines that had been piling up on the table where I put all my to be read  items, for once I was in the current month so I suppose having the flu last month had its perks. 

Speaking of time I have to post this as a reminder for myself so on Sunday morning when I realize I once gain forgot to set the clocks before I go to bed I can laugh at myself.
I have a post it note attached to the monitor, on the fridge and on the bathroom mirror but still I tend to forget.
Here is a photo of some hibiscus plants with buds I need to shop for larger pots this week so I can get them transplanted.
more Hibiscus buds
These are a few more plants including another hibiscus in the blue pot full of buds which should begin to open this week.
and still more buds waiting
So general clean up in the garden will continue on this week and according to weather reports its supposed to be much cooler the the mid to upper 80's we've had here all this week. 
This Late Bloomer gardening book has some great tips and ideas I plan to use this year and the latest issue of Florida Gardening has some articles I swear had me in mind when they wrote them.
When I finally realized gardening in Florida was a little different from other locations I knew I NEEDED some kind of guidance and this magazine helps with some of the challenges we face.