Not much has happened around here this last week. We had some lovely weather, some wet weather and then the chilly weather. Zat's OK, it is still spring. Summer will arrive soon enough. A few more things have popped into bloom. My Flying Dragon trees that are growing in the drainage ditch next to the property have sprung into flower. This tree is such an interesting one. It is a native citrus that will survive some very cold temperatures. It is often used as the graft host for commercial orange growers cause it is so hardy. It does have fruit that can, if you are so inclined, be used. Some suggest making a beverage out of them, much like lemonade. We will see on that one!! But it is a beautiful little tree with the longest thorns!! The flowers are white and smell nice, like a delicate orange.
On one of my little jaunts I noticed some violets growing in a ditch along side the road. Now these were not your typical tiny little purple ones, but big white and lavender ones. The flower is a bit bigger than my thumb nail, but still with the flower shape of a true violet, not a pansy. At first I thought maybe crazy person had planted them there many years ago. But then I started to notice them in other locations. Along with some grape hyacinths or muscari of the deepest purpley blue. So the next day, after a good soaking rain, I went and dug some up and brought them home. I am so hopeful that I can get them to grow as I do so love wildflowers and these are some great ones for early spring. But here is a couple of pics I took of the flowers that ended up on my table. Even if I can't get them to grow well at the house, I can always pick all I need along the wayside. Oh, and the white flower must be some kind of wild statice. I am not going to try to transplant any of that. It grows in wild abundance in the ditch up by the school.
We also had a windy day last week. That brought me another treasure of nature. Under a tall pine tree I found this delightful bird's nest that had blown down. It is a medium sized, twig and mud masterpeice. It seems to have a central "bowl" of mud surrounded by a layer of loosely woven bigger twigs. Among the twigs is some of that curly christmas ribbon. The ribbon is white but wouldn't that have been fun if it had been red or green!! Then inside the mud bowl,which by the way, is perfectly round, is a soft layer of dried grasses on which to cushion the eggs. This next was built on a small branch that included a pine cone which is now a permanant part of the nest, glued to the bottom by the mud. I am not sure if this nest ever got used cause there is no evidence of tiny feathers and such. It could have just been built and then blew down, poor birdies with all that hard work. But at least it still has a purpose, one to decorate my front porch. And it is doing it's job quite well. The other items in the picture are both forms of polypore, or shelf fungi. The brown one is probably velvet polypore and the white, which from the side looks like a perfect mushroom, is probably a cottage cheese polypore. Both were collected off the ground here on the property.
My projects are all coming along nicely. I may even have a finished object to show next week!! The shawl is just 17 units from completion. I have been managing to do about 4 a day so even with blocking I could have pictures by this time a week from now. The quilt blocks are being made at the rate of about 5 a week. Now that is slow but at least it is steady. And this without a dedicted sewing area. I sure hope at some point to step up the pace. This week for some reason, I picked up an old hand quilting project that really needed finishing. It is a quilt made from muslin and plaids. It was inspired by a long ago class taken with Roberta Horton who loves scrap quilts and uses tons of plaids. In fact she had a line of fabrics that were sold at LQS's for many years, may still be. I had 5 of the 35 blocks already quilted and this week I have managed to complete one more and am already working on the 2nd. I would love to finish this up sometime this summer and use it on the bed out in the guest quarters. The colors will be perfect and it will fit the double bed out there nicely.
It is less than 2 weeks til our trip to Disney. We are getting a bit excited thinking about seeing the granddaughters and getting to go to the beach, then on to wonderland!! We now have our hotel rooms bought and paid for, our tickets to the park, bought and paid for so all we have left to do is to make the trip!! I am not sure I will even be bringing any knitting with me to do in my spare time. Cause honestly? Do you really think we are going to have any spare time????