Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Interestingly, I prefer subtle or no borders on my quilts. But wisdom dictates that I curtail my tendencies to world dominion here on the farm. A new fence will have sheep grazing on my back meadow so that shrinks the west end somewhat. I have a path thru the bush but I no longer try to pretty it up. Besides, deer live in it and are nibbling on my focal point where the path ends.

But this is what I deal with, what keeps me from an idle life with lemonade, a book and a lawn swing. lol This curved and rustic board fence divides the house from the farm yard and runs east and west on the south side of the house in an L shape that only encloses the side yard.

Starting at the southeast end of the board fence as you come in from the driveway.

This is the east border and runs parallel with the road. It is for privacy and dust control. I used to cut it but where do you stop?

This is the north end looking back. The north east corner butts up to the north bush.

The north boundary runs along the bush to the chicken coop. There is a metal arbor near the bench that points the way to the woodland path which comes out again half way to the coop. This is a wet area, boggy, and needs some drainage. The old garden shed is near the coop but is hidden by some trees in the picture's centre area.

The coop sets the northwest corner. The west border has the new fence line and runs clear over to the new garden shed.

This shed and old fuel tank borders the barn yard and runs alongside the big barn, which somehow has shrunk in these pictures. This is my southern boundary.

And we are back where we started. I also cut the area in front of the barns and I'm trying to abdicate any responsibility for the orchard because I hate trimming and my farmer is not impressed by the stumps of young and tender fruit trees that are left when I miscalculate while driving around in high gear. oops

The barn needs renovating but that is my farmer's job. I just want my dye shed done and the yard simplified so I can sip lemonade and enjoy more time with my less strenuous hobbies!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A little more...

Some things are still green but a lot of the fall colours are showing. We have mostly the yellows and golds with very little red.

I had taken the last of my shavings for this path thru the arbor which leads to a woodland meander. I think I need to widen the end so the stones fan more on the left. Not a big deal.

Then I need to continue to work on this curved corner of the yard. I'd put in some low juniper for a ground cover years go. They have grown but are hardly seen as I also put some wild currents in and they have gotten totally wild so I cut them out. I moved the very lowest juniper up front. I have 2 lilac seedlings I can put into the back. I just need to do more trimming, raking and brush removal and then some fall/winter fertilizing so they are good to go come spring. And if that taller juniper doesn't improve it'll be trimmed out as well.Lots of composted manure have made the soil here pretty good.
But the art isn't so good. I definitely need some more instruction!

I had bought a Japanese paint set from Lee Valley a few years ago. No instructions but I think I can do some stamping as there is some wax and a tiny dipper. ??? But I did try the brushes. I'll try again tomorrow because the brushes still have some stiffness in their centre and I forgot to shut the lid on the palette so all the paints are REALLY dry. I think I'll just wash it all out and after I'm finished doing a 'little more' yard work I'll google some 'how to's!
Time to switch from water and brushes to wind and rake.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Blue Skies

This looks like the week to get out there and get things done. No rain in the week's forecast. I won't hold my breath but I will get busy!

I never got to the art store last week but I do have some supplies. So I opened up the 'text' book, and my journal and my paints. oooh, some are quite dry but I've learned they are redeemable. So this will be a work book and not an instant work of art, or should I say Elle!

I also forgot to mention the Peter Rabbit pot, the real deal by Beatrix Potter I found at the thrift shop. I offered it to my 2 fellow shoppers and they passed so I didn't. 8^)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

I am...

I am moving along. I have made serious progress editing stuff. I had a great day with the kids, got a few things at the thrift shop, and put my hand up to 'WHOA' the fast approaching car that would have splashed us even more than the rain was. Kinda felt empowering! LOL
But no waving of my hands could get the darn car going after a wonderful webnar class at my sewing store. But it is now fixed. Nothing else got crossed off the list for my town trip but a fixed car is gonna mean that I shall be able to return. :)
I am so thrilled with these web sessions. This last was so good, a quilted jacket. Wonderful techniques but a real aha moment when I saw the possibilities for garment sections being little quiltlets that are just cut using a pattern piece and then butted together. We visit, we learn and we show and share. Did I mention we also sip and nibble? We also go home with handouts that are on CD discs and in full Technicolour. Luv it!
AND, a real bonus; the sun is shining and looks like it may stay around for a while. yippee!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Creativity 101 revisited

In the beginning I wanted to do some journalling/sketch booking and I still feel that is the place to start. I have Diana Trout's Journal Spilling book and I actually went and got supplies. I have a designated area in the playroom. But it and the floor where I'd stand are cluttered. Diana is starting a new creative endeavour but I'm trying to decide if I just need to do it, my own thing for a bit, rather than commit to another thing that goes by the wayside. vbsigh

I bit the bullet yesterday, even after it looked like the sun really would come out. I stuffed a garbage bag with all my 'important' collections of data. What good is it if I can never find what I'm looking for? And besides, there is Google! So I dealt with the piles on the floor. I need to keep my journalling toys on the counter so I can't put sewing stuff there.
The sun is still shining today but I think I will do some Triple F: focus, fiddle and FINISH while I decide what Creativity 101 is going to entail.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Following a blue line

After all my careful preparations we only went as far as the Canadian Tire/Wall Mart parking lot in Kenora. That's where the tow truck deposited us when the car failed to start at our first rest break. :( So we arranged for the friends on the other end to come get my friend and then I made my way back home.

The VERY Great news was that I found this wonderful glass jar for parfait dyeing. It will be a reminder of the old axiom that the best laid plans of mice and men often go astray. But I can't help but adding that all good things come to he who waits. And I have been looking/waiting for this jar for quite a while.

Friday, September 17, 2010

As snug as a bug

Perspective and accurate colour are not always possible on the blog site, but I am very happy with this rug. The room is square and the light not centered. There is a bathroom door right behind the camera. The circular shape is perfect for door swings, traffic paths, and shape.

The front room rug has always been too small but it worked. There is an 8 x 12 rug also available in the same pattern as the round. I can have it in the same colours with a cranberry added. I think it'll work! I just need to collect a whole lot more eggs before the sale ends. Here chickie, chickie!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Flying the Coop

Darn chilly today. I'm happy to be inside making warm currents of air as I prepare and gather things for a little road trip. I did go pick up my new rug at the catalogue delivery office and after the wrinkles settle out I'll reveal how perfect it is. When I first laid eyes on it I thought, ooh, too grey. But it is fine.

Another thrift store find a few weeks ago echoes the colours in the rug wonderfully. Someone brought in a whole lot of cookie jars. I got 4 of them. They ranged from $5 to $2.50. This is the biggest at $5



Another medium. These are on the stairway wall. Not where the rug is but I'm sure they'll meet up at some point in my decorating inspirations. ;)

I'm going to be taking a little road trip to the east, visiting friends; making myself at home with them. Perhaps we'll be having cookies!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Lemon and Lime

I was on the hunt for yellows yesterday. I have gathered up all the yellow things I have and put them in the kitchen. I needed another tall yellow 'something'. The yellow plate I saw was too nauseous and the vintage yellow plastic coffee and tea canisters may have been a mistake I'll live to regret but I passed.
The glass bag was a thrift store find that I picked up. Well, snatched may be more accurate. fifty cents
I have many of these round place mats in various colours and they often add the dash of colour that I need.

The kitchen is going to be yellow and this wall is also going to be seeing some major changes. I'm getting very tired of cleaning these open shelves so whatever I do will be behind some glass doors! I also have way too much blank space above the display that isn't always easy to fill. Like this grouping. I even thought of stapling the yellow place mat up on the wall! But for now, here is my collection of yellows.
South end.

North end.

This is a very sunny room with a south window. I'm going to go with painted cupboards and probably paint the panelling as well. I did have a plan but since an outside wall is recommended for the exhaust fan I'm having to do some rethinking. Again! But no changes for a mellow yellow theme.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Grasshoppers and Ants

There is a story/parable/fable about hard working ants and a grasshopper who fiddled and played while summer days passed by. Fall came and still he played. When the cold of the first snow fell he knocked on the ants' door. They were pretty abrupt with him! Look to the ants, you sluggard! So, I think there may have been a bit of fiddle playing during the summer but these falling leaves have certainly put the hurry in my step. I'm hoping for a long, lazy, and warm autumn, but...
So I'm hustling. 3/4's of the way around the perimeter of my yard. pant, pant. The grass got into this end so it was easier to pull the plants, dig, and of course, rearrange. The field stones are very hard to keep nice so I just dug them out and stacked them. I need to think about a path surface. We also need to have a trench or something back behind as it is too low and the water pools and kills stuff. The farming chores are not going to happen. What is done is done. It is far too wet in the fields. I have a road trip this weekend and my dearie has said he can give two weekends to the studio shed project. So I want to be ready for that. Today is grandkids day. Surely the ants play on occasion! But I definitely want to get my work done so I can play all winter!!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Blue Line Day

Fall and I'm falling behind. But I am getting a grip on the realities of what is involved in my procrastinating.

So I am actually aware of some of the approaching deadlines.

Now to do the next thing first!

Friday, September 10, 2010

One day ahead of schedule

The rain is ahead of schedule, it is not due till tomorrow. I'm still behind schedule and I've lost count of how many days.

When I began designing garden beds I had the graph paper and the flower/shrub info and a dozen helpful books. It did not translate to the black dirt. Now that could be my measuring but I've decided I don't like jam packed. Now close is good as it means less weeding but my successes tended to be elbow to elbow and the 'no shows' tended to represent vacant lots. I'm trying to even things out and to let the majority be self sustaining. This white bed comes down to a black arbor and bench so I repositioned this tower and I'll need to find some hardy climber to cover it. But here is another job that isn't finished. But its, sob, not my fault. vbsigh The agricultural paper says our area is one of the top 3 areas in our province hardest hit with all this rain and high winds. What's a gal to do?

I had a privacy lattice behind this front to separate the front bed, which is my most formal area, from the side yard. This is the part of the yard I wanted to keep pretty natural, kind of a cabin at the lake feel.

Well, he who does the grilling wants to do it on a deck so I tore down the lattice, laid the black hose for a lawn edge and flapped the old plywood down to see if this would work. The steps down should cover that lower window. I'll have to fill in where the lattice used to be and along the grass edge with shrubs. The good news is less grass and trimming and hopefully not too much weeding.

I do not want much to ruin the view from my comfy chair in the sitting room, thru the large patio doors and into the north bush from which I've cut out the ugly dead stuff and filled in with cultivated varieties of the native shrubs. I'm also waiting for my new round sitting room rug to be delivered. This is my neutral spot in the house. A quiet place with the big windows inviting the outdoors in. A place to forget about weather forecasts, budgets, to-do lists, bad news and tiredness. A peaceful place.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Now what was I doing?

I woke up in the middle of the night and remembered my purple door! 8(
What list was that on?
I am working the flower beds in a clockwise direction. So far I have been in every corner of the yard, hunting for the perfect replacement that will fill the dead spot. But I keep dragging myself back to the end of the hour hand. The weekend is predicting a major rain. I have errands today and then two days to finish the sweep of the lawn. I am just so amazed at my distractability. How is that for a word! Focus. Fo cus. Fo CUS! Drat, as a child I wasn't diagnosed with ADD. My sister was and she sticks to things better than I. sheesh!
List: yard, finish trim on coop, paint purple door!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Looking for ...

...some clear space! The 'puter desk doesn't have much writing room. But I think I make too many lists anyway. What I think I'd write down on the blue lines of the paper, and possibly in red is that gardening was a hot idea that has seen its day. I'll keep what I have but make it a one day a week job and get back into my playroom and weed out all these blasted lists.
Now there is surely value in lists. But why I need lists of lists that I never look at is a deep root I'll be analyzing. ha, if I'm face down and feet up among the pricklies, it won't be heat stroke, just brain fatigue! LOL

Monday, September 6, 2010

A long weekend of labouring.

This is the Labour Day weekend and I can't believe that August is gone. Yikes!

I started moving in a higher gear on Friday and got a goodly portion of the fall decor all in place with the list of what I need to make to complete things.

The sun has come out to play so Saturday I began to sort things out in the flower beds. No more new stuff. I'm just dividing what works! 8^)

Sunday my royal princess arrived and truly made it a purple day.

My dearie did a good job on the family lunch as we had very little leftovers.

The prince and I got all the grass cut while the rest of the family salsa'd!

I joined them for the final bottling, 18 pints.

Now it is the blue line day. The beginning of a new month. A few nibbles on the local grapes the kids brought. I shall be talking to my grape vine which would rather climb the trees than spread out on the fence! :(

The strategy meeting has us down to the end of the list but also a few obligations as well. Time to edit a few things as we analyze the time left. I am NOT one to analyze things. Perhaps a phobia of some sort but blogging is so beneficial if you want to learn things, even about yourself. So I'm not blue, just my fingers from some grapes, but if I want to continue to grow artistically I will have to answer a few questions about why and how. It'll all be good.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Back to Hump Day

And here it is Thursday again. Not only is Thursday my hump day where I realize the week is half done but a new month has started and the pastels of summer need putting away and the intense but warm colours of autumn need to have pride of place. And I do need them. It has been especially cold, wet and drab in my corner of the world.

Colour is SO much fun. I realize I've left out a whole lot of options which will probably surface in the future at special times. The grey setting on my camera will see a lot more use as I evaluate value in future quilts and even decorating situations.

I haven't been idle The kitchen has had an auction find addition. Shelves from a meat shop were cleaned. How nice to have a hubby involved who sees the garden hose and a dish brush aren't adequate so gets out the power tools, runs off to buy wire brushes, unites the two and the labour is significantly reduced. Not only was I impressed with the power tools which still took 5 hours but he was impressed with how good the shelves turned out. So the kitchen now has a baking centre! I do like it! Now to get creative and use it!

I do have little piles of coloured accessories stacked all over so the next 2 days should see some major fall cleaning and redecorating. And the bonus is in having the vacuum putting out heat! Time to get the rest of the week done!