Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Pruning the Hydrangeas

I have been reading and reading, studying, and asking the experts about the correct time and way to prune hydrangeas!  There is so much to know, I think I should have gotten a degree in ornamental horticulture.  So many things to consider.  One of the big considerations is the variety of hydrangea.

Today I am biting the bullet, taking pruning shears in hand and deadheading the mop head hydrangea.  If I have done my homework correctly, mop heads should be pruned (deadheaded) before new buds form.  Most experts say "August."  This is nail biting--the hydrangeas were beautiful this year and I want them to be ever better Next Year.

Miss Oak Leaf is a different variety of hydrangea.  I do not deadhead Miss Oak Leaf.  The blooms and leaves turn a beautiful crimson and cinnamon color and the birds feed off the blooms.  Oh, Miss Oak Leaf, don't disappoint me.

Monday, July 30, 2012


There is something very special about farmhouses.

Maybe it is the sound of rain falling on the tin roof

Or the wonderful smells coming from the kitchen.

In the case of this farmhouse, it was the unconditional love given to AppleJack by dear, sweet, Aunt Stella.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

What do you get?

When you combine your latest Goodwill find?

with your "25+ year old all I wanted it to do is sew a straight seam Kenmore sewing machine?"

 some stash fabric?

You get a nice decorative flat sheet for your bed.

Total cost of project?  Approximately $3.00 and some Betty time.  There was also a nice piece of fabric left from the project which will either be used to make a table runner or placemats.  In the words of Martha "Goodwill--it's a good thing."

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Sarah's House

Guess what AppleJack picked up for me today at the LNS?

Does anyone recognize this design?

Here is another clue:  it is by one of my favorite designers

Yes, it's Sarah's House by the Blackbird Girls!

(With a few minor adjustments, it will become Great Grandmother Sarah Miranda's house).
Thank you Blackbird Girls!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The life and times of Next Year

We have entered the time of year when gardens in the South begin to struggle--very high temperatures and low rainfall.

A lone daylily struggling with the heat but determined to bloom and grow!

Tomatoes are still producing.

Deadheading and weeding are the norms of the day.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

We interrupt this. . .

With all the flying geese in the All Purpose Work Room--it looks like an explosion.  Since Monday was laundry day, I am making Tuesday cleaning day.  Creativity is a wonderful thing especially when I can find the scissors!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Another Monday Wash Day

If it's Monday, it must be wash day!

The wash tubs are ready and waiting.

Washing powder

And Purex bleach restocked from the market.

Scrub board ready and waiting for AppleJack's bib overalls.  

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Jo Morton Nine Patch Variation

This is the next Jo Morton class--Jo calls this quilt Eggs and Bacon.  Not sure how she came up with this name.  Each quilted square consists of four nine patch blocks joined together with sashings.  By the way, did I mention one of the nine patch squares equals 3 1/2" when completed?  They are tiny.

Ahh basic math take me away--I see some addition in my future.

I haven't selected my fabrics bit I am thinking gold, rust and browns with shirting's.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Jo Morton and the Flying Geese

Have you ever had an experience when you just didn't think it could get any better and it did?  This is how I would describe the Jo Morton classes.  To make the quilts is challenging, the finished quilts are beautiful, and the classmates are a wonderful group of sharing women.  There is laughter, stories, tips, successes and failures.  Sit back and enjoy the ride--here come the quilts!  The quilt pictured above is the teachers quilt.

This is Carmen's quilt--her color choices are always awesome.

Isn't this an awesome Flying Geese?  This quilter always has the best tips to share and is always willing to help others learn.  She had just returned from a "fishing trip" with her husband, she had stories to tell!

Teri's quilt, aren't the colors yummy?  Teri was giving this quilt to her daughter to use to play with her dolls.  Pretty nice baby doll quilt, makes me wish I still played with dolls.

The lady who made this quilt is very quiet and makes the most beautiful quilts.  She had used Christmas fabrics.

Marilyn is the Applique Queen!  She uses a combination of fabrics--wools, cottons and brushed flannels.  Those brushed flannels are to die for!

Carmen's daughter is a dancer and her dance group is having a silent auction fund raiser.  Carmen has made items for the auction.

If you are interested in purchasing these items visit Carmen's blog.

This piece is still in the works.  I think she said this was going to be a bag--you don't want to miss the quilted back side of this piece.

My creative juices are in overload and I have a ton of things which are calling for my attention.  The next quilt is a 9 patch with a Jo Morton twist.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Will it be ready?

Tomorrow is Jo Morton quilt class.  The question I keep asking myself:  "Will the flying geese quilt be ready?

Time for some major caffeine, putting the metal to the pedal and pulling an all nigher.

Hopefully will have lots of show and tell from tomorrow's class.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

(More) Flying Geese

Yes, you are correct, I am still getting my ducks geese in a row!

An excellent question to ask:  "How many geese does it take to make a quilt?"

The correct answer is many (more than I have sewn).

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Mid Summer Progress Report--Next Year

After eight days of triple digit heat, eight days of rain and thunder showers, Next Year is looking worse for wear.  Receiving rain was a blessing and the rain is non discriminating:  it provides moisture for trees, shrubs, flowers and weeds!  Some gardening observations:

  • Fall begins September 22--which means there is nine more weeks of summer.  Mother Nature what's on your agenda?
  • I raked leaves today.  The dogwood tree and other trees have been so stressed from the heat and lack of moisture they had started to drop their leaves.
  • The day lilies are making a come back--they are tough as nails which is one reason I love them.
  • Cutting the grass after a heavy rain takes more time than a normal cutting.
  • The lavender will most likely have to be replaced.
The photo above is from M's house.  They were part of the table decorations for the wedding, aren't they lovely?

More table setting flowers from the wedding.

Our rain barrel--refilled from the recent rains!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Gathering of the Geese

Since my Jo Morton class is on Saturday, it is time to get serious about my Flying Geese homework.  Let's just say, I am making S L O W progress.  Each line of flying geese has fifty geese/goose.  One geese/goose is approximately, 2 1/2."  I have two more lines of geese to add before I start setting the sashing.  I will need to make another fifty geese to complete the needed two lines.  WHEW!  Yes, I am feeling overwhelmed.

I can only hope to have the geese flying in the same direction!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Flying Geese

A rainy day in Music City and I have been working on the Flying Geese for the next Jo Morton class.  Let's just say, there are many geese to assemble before they will be ready to fly South for the winter class next Saturday!

Friday, July 13, 2012

A Sailing We Will Go

Barrick Samplers (Carriage House)
1797 Ship Sampler

There are many lakes and rivers in Tennessee.  The Tennessee River in Memphis may see big ships, but there are no big ships in Music City.  One of the most fun trips I ever made was to Boston, when I took a boat tour around the city.  The tour included a stop at the U. S. S. Constitution.

                                                     Boston Harbor


Carriage House
The Shores of Hawk Run 

The bad photo kinda looks a reflection of the sun or moon, but its just a poor photo.  Yes, I am one of those stitchers who chooses a favorite design from the Hawk Run series and just stitches the one which most appeals to me.

It has been a rainy day and week in Music City (and I am very thankful, we needed the rain).  So while the weeds grow in Next Year, I will stay inside and work on my Jo Morton homework and think about sailing on the ocean blue.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

A Day at Sunny Brook

A Day at Sunny Brook

Are there other Maggie Bonanomi fans anxiously awaiting the arrival of her latest book?  Here is how Amazon describes Sunny Brook:  Inspired by the rich colors of a vintage quilt, an 1899 book of advice, and a favorite doll, Maggie Bonanomi brings you the world of Sunny Brook School for Girls.  An abundance of projects:  a sampler, mending baskets, a chatelaine, pincushions, a fireplace screen, pillows and more pillows, a throw, pinched purse, hooked rugs, bed cover, daily books and a flower press.  

Doesn't it all sound delicious?  I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of my copy. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Branching Out

This tree growing in Eden is one of those fast growers, it puts down roots and starts sprouting branches!  

Some observations about Adam:

  • He could use some Vitamin D
  • Wonder what size shoe he wears
  • He could benefit from pumping some iron to build up those biceps
  • He has used the leaves of the tree wisely

Monday, July 9, 2012


Current temperature in Music City 80 degrees!
80 degrees this is 29 degrees cooler than the temps in June!
Music City had rain over the weekend and more is in the forecast. 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

A love story

 Though they live in different cities, states and countries.  Special occasions and celebrations bring AppleJack's family together.

A wedding, the exchange of the vows.

Two people, two families, two cultures becoming one.

The garden provided a beautiful setting.

Music, specially written and performed by cousin, SB

The smiles say it all!  A special love story.  

A love story which began nine years ago.  A story of a Mexican girl who came to America as an exchange student and the American boy who listened to his heart.

I still believe in love stories and happy endings beginnings!

And thank you Auntie M and Uncle S for the magic of the night!