Friday, March 31, 2017

By the Skin of My Teeth

Design - "Joyful Journal - March"
Designer - Heart in Hand
Fabric - 30 count WDW Confederate Gray
Fibers - GAST & WDW - 2 strands over 2 threads
Started - 7 March 2017
Completed - 30 March 2017

Wahoo!  Considering how hard it has been for me to stay on track stitching this year, I am happy to celebrate my third finish for 2017. 

Here are a few late March birds...

Mourning Dove

Spotted Towhee

Golden-crowned Sparrow

California Scrub Jay

Two male House Finches

I'm hoping that American Goldfinches and Evening Grosbeaks show up in the next week or so.  Stay tuned!

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Catching Up

I placed a small order a while ago and most of the charts arrived this week.
I am still waiting for the 4th in the series of Heartstring Samplings Bird Collection to show up. April may be a mix of Easter and bird stitching.  We shall see.

And now to answer a couple of questions and say thank you.  I do try to respond to everyone who is kind enough to comment and answer question via email.  But so many people are set up 'No-Reply", so I cannot.  Sue Hilf asked me about a chart on my blog header and I could not email her. The post with all the designers' names and chart names for March is here and should answer your question.  Also several new followers like M in Vancouver have commented to say that they enjoy the blog.  If I have not responded, it is because you are set up as No-Reply. Please know that I so appreciate your comments and hope you continue to enjoy my blog.

Now on to the birds.  

I noticed the other morning that there was no bird activity at the feeders, and then I found this small Sharp-shinned Hawk in a young fir tree at the edge of the yard.  As I walked over to 'encourage' the bird to move on it took off and headed straight to the house to 'get' a hummingbird at one of the two feeders I have at the kitchen windows!

This feeder!  Fortunately the hummer took off in time.

Once the hawk left the birds slowly returned including a few Bushtits.


I also enjoy watching the chickadees.

They will snag a piece of peanut and then take it to a branch where they work at getting it the correct size to consume.

I'm hoping that a couple of pairs will nest in the houses we provide.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Wet Wednesday Walk

I don't normally feature a cross stitch on Wednesday walks, but this one fits perfectly.

Design - "Sweet Violets"
Designer - Cedar Hill
Fabric - 28 count R & R Irish Cream linen
Fibers - DMC - 2 strands over 2 threads
Started - 20 April 2008
Completed - 31 May 2008

I changed the DMC colors for the violets as I thought the original choices were too blue and I wanted true lavender shades.
I chose dark green and cream mats.

I think they made a nice primary frame.

Framed October 2014

I confess that I am really in love with the frame. It is extremely plain, but somehow is very striking and perfectly complements the color of the stitched alphabet.

On this very wet walk, the violets are everywhere!

Just like my cross stitch!

And white ones...

The white violets are naturalizing to beat the band. 

So tiny and so pretty.

And we have pink ones too.
We also have yellow ones, but those bloom a bit later. 

The Trilliums continue to explode out of the ground.

As do the Fawn Lilies...

They are also called Trout Lilies for their speckled leaves.

We have a high pollen count already. 

The Pussy Willows are one of the things contributing to my sister's misery.  She will suffer until the Cottonwoods have bloomed.  Once the trees have ended and the grasses start she'll be fine.  Then my Mom will be sniffing and red-eyed. 

I hope that you have a sign or two of early spring to enjoy.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Stitching Again

You can be forgiven for thinking I've stopped stitching, because I pretty much have.  I started "Joyful Journal - March" back on March 7th and then set it aside until last Friday.  I picked it up and started stitching over the weekend.  I may have a finish to share before the month ends! 

While we've had lots and lots of rainy days this March, the birds still have been plentiful.

I'm not sure that I've ever had as many Black-capped Chickadees as I do this year.  Saturday evening there were 6-8 birds. 

And to top that off, the Chestnut-backed Chickadees are still active at the feeders.

The pair of Lesser Goldfinches have been daily visitors.

The male House Finches are starting to wear their courting colors.

And last week saw the return of a couple of White-crowned Sparrows.

These pretty sparrows have been AWOL since September. 

It's nice to have them back.

I am hearing, and seeing Mourning Doves more frequently.
They are courting too.

Are the Steller's Jays pairing up?  As the males and females look identical, it is hard to tell.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Spring is Here

Here's a blast from the past (2011). "Bouquet for March" was a delight from start to finish.
I did change the DMC color for the violets, and am pleased with my choice.  I also discovered an error in the chart - one of the cyclamen stems is not charted, but is clearly shown on the chart photo, so I added it in.

I even found a cyclamen (plant) that matched the colors of the stitched piece.  I decided that I'd use this piece to honor my maternal Grandfather.  It's a wonderful match as he had a March birthday and a special affection for cyclamen which ran rampant in his yard.  I added his initials on the left - "JWW" and the years of his birth and death - 1912-2009.  Then I stitched my initials and the year the piece was finished on the bottom right.

Design - "March Bouquet"
Designer - Cedar Hills
Fabric - 28 count R & R Irish Creme linen
Fibers - DMC
Started - 17 March 2011
Completed - 4 May 2011

Here it is framed.  I usually display it this month.  

Besides violets and cyclamens, there are other signs of spring...

We had a couple of Tom Turkeys come by on Friday.

They were in their full courting regalia.

Bright red wattle and glossy bronze breast feathers.

They were strutting their stuff.


All because of this young female.  She hurried off as fast as she could.

Three more Toms quickly followed. It's all about procreation this time of year.