Friday, July 29, 2011

My First Quilting Project

Quilting is something I've always been interested in, but it wasn't until recently that I decided to get started on my first project. I spent a lot of time looking at quilts online trying to choose something simple and the one pattern that kept grabbing my attention was, the Ohio Star. I loved the different color variations and layouts people used to make such beautiful quilts and I have to tell you, I was hooked! So, I printed out a tutorial I found online, picked up some fabric and a few other supplies and jumped in! It took me a while to put this together, probably longer than it should have, but it's my first and I have to say I'm rather proud of it. This particular pattern I'm using makes a 12" block so I definitely have some work ahead of me before the top itself is finished.
Another reason why I wanted to start quilting, is because of the sentimental value they hold, being passed down from one generation to the next. I remember hearing about quilting parties when ladies would get together to make a quilt for a daughter or granddaughter as a wedding gift, and that each piece of material used had a particular story to it, making it all the more special. I'm a pretty old-fashioned soul at heart, so for me to give something special to my children means a lot to me, and I truly think my great-grandmothers would be very proud of me being part of such a wonderful tradition. At any rate, I will definitely add more posts in the coming weeks as I get more of this quilt done.
I would love to hear any quilting stories that you would like to share, whether it's about one that you've made or maybe one that was handed down from a special aunt or grandmother. There's always a special story with each quilt.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Bird Watching

Earlier this month we had a pair of wrens build a nest on the ledge under our patio roof. I watched them build the nest, watched the male bring his mate food while she sat on her eggs, then we finally heard the babies calling hungrily to their parents for food. Every day I kept an eye on them, impatiently waiting to catch that first glimpse of a small beak or a downey-feathered head.

The past few days have been heart-stopping as I watched these little babies pushing and shoving each other, knowing that it wouldn't be long before it was time to leave the nest and this morning was it.
I missed the first two babies fly out but this one was behind the grill on the ground while the other has already made its way into some bushes just a few feet away. This one would join its sibling a few seconds later.
This one I called the straggler. It waited a few minutes like it wasn't quite sure what to do, but it didn't take it long to figure it out. I watched all three babies make their way into one of the trees in the yard, going higher and higher, then over the fence and into another tree. Their parents close by, chattering and watching over each one of them. I managed to keep an eye on where they were for a while, then caught one last photo.

I had so much fun watching these little birds and a little sad to see them go. I've watched other birds hatch, but you never get tired of seeing that part of the world that many folks pay little attention to. Definitely brings a smile to my face and I have to say my family enjoyed watching, too.