Friday, April 24, 2015

Changing Seasons ............

My life has changed so much in the last few years.

I used to have flowers and retail.

Now I have teaching and flowers ........ sprinkled by a little more teaching.

I never ever never thought that anyone would be interested in anything that I knew.  Partly because I thought everyone knew how to make a buttonhole or knead bread or can tomatoes.  To me --- it was the stuff that my life was made.  Nothing special .... nothing out of the ordinary.

Now .... from September to the beginning of May .... I spend three and four days a week, prepping for a class somewhere.  For the last few months, I have been teaching three nights a week at Scott Community College.

But my teaching season is ending for the year.  I finished my last cooking class on Wednesday. I have two more sessions in the interior design class I have been teaching.  And last night I finished my last sewing class ....... sort of.  (more about that later!)

It is the exciting/ bone-weary-tired/ frustrating/worrisome/ life-affirming season  ....... it is the growing season.

The hope of beautiful flowers fills my dreams.  I jump with excitement for the opportunity to fill the gardens with beautiful flowers and fun accessories.  Gardens that make you look deeply into them to find a beautiful blossom or a hidden surprise.

And yet .... frustration comes in the form of unpredictable weather.  Last weekend ..... I saw tight little buds on the lilacs ... ready to break into bloom in a week or so.  But yesterday morning ... a freeze took them all so no lilacs will be in bloom for May Day.

I am totally re-designing a new perennial bed with 160 new perennials in 400 square feet. After digging out nettles and hollyhocks, scrub trees and unproductive rose bushes .... I weeded, tilled, divided and planted daisies, coneflowers, beebalm, and helenium.

Since that photo ..... I have added a few more daylilies.  I have a couple of hydrangeas that need to go in and 100 white Asiatic lilies will arrive in 2 weeks and will find a home in the bed.

It still needs decorative accessories ..... it needs some pretty container plantings.  It needs birdhouses sprinkled throughout.  It needs .......... it needs ..........

It needs to look like this!!!!

The gardens are changing this year ............. they always do.  But the look needs to be softer and fuller and over-the-top vintage.

I want it to feel like this!!! 

Welcoming and warm and delightful.

And I want it to inspire bouquets like this one!!!!!

I think I have my work cut out for me!!!!!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Things that go peep in the morning.....

This is Kelly ..... she is the new postmaster in Donahue.  And she was the one that gave me my early morning wake up call of .... peep, peep, peep.

When you order your chicks by mail .... a good postmaster can make the difference between healthy chicks and not-so-alive chicks.  I am always grateful for those 6:30 am phone calls.

Our 25 chicks arrived yesterday ..... happy but hungry from their 2-day long, 3-state  travels.  That truly makes these chicks far more worldly than I!!!!  I barely get into Donahue!!!!

Chick day is kind of like Christmas for me.  I remember going to the feed store with my dad and looking at the chicks that arrived by mail.  They were such little balls of fluff ..... I always begged to take them home!

But little balls of fluff ... stay little balls of fluff for only a few days.  And hiding a pullet under the bed never seemed like an idea that would work ........ even for a 5 year-old.

Some the chicks had a bit of a field trip last night as I taught "Chickens in the Backyard" at Scott Community College.  They were really ready to join their friends as we were bringing them home.  It was quite the peep fest!

We have four breeds of chicks that I have never raised before.

We have New Hampshire reds, Black Laced Red Wyandottes, Columbian Wyandottes and Golden Laced Cochins.

I am excited to have the cochins...... they are such calm, docile, mothering birds.

photo courtesy of Cackle Hatchery

Maybe they do stay little balls of fluff ..............................
But I won't be hiding any of them under my bed!!!!


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Would you?? Wouldn't you??

I love searching for new/different sewing patterns.

The other day ... I came across this 1940's vintage apron pattern  that Simplicity reproduced.

I L-O-V-E-D it.


Particularly view C.

OK -- really view A.  But the fabric for that one hasn't arrived yet!

Super cute, right?????

Back to my dilemma.

I know.  It is always about me.

I want to make view C ..... which is designed for a border print fabric.

Now border print fabrics aren't common in the industry.  Oh -- you find a few now and then.

And sometimes ...... they end up in your stash.  Just hanging around .... waiting for the perfect project.

Like this one............

This is American Jane design by Sandy Klopp.

This is such a sweet vintage design.  Reminds me of Dick and Jane and Sally and Puff and Spot!!!

Look!  It has five little plants!  And six little garden hats!

And how could you not love a fabric with 9 little birds????

To shake it up a bit ............ I want to use this coordinating print for the waistband, shoulder straps and waist ties.

It sort of looks like jacks and balls.

OK -- so now is the big question.

Would you wear it?????

Or would you say ..... no?????