Interlude
Hot July!

Fireworks Plus

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Yesterday I was sitting in my cushy armchair in the living room, eating my lunch and filling in my daily crossword puzzle (on my smartphone:). Suddenly, I heard a loud bang - a bird had bashed into the big glass door beside me. Startled by the noise, I looked to my left to see not only the bird fluttering away into the bush nearby but also the red fox that was trying to catch it! I am pleased that here in suburbia we see so much 'wildlife' that has adapted to living near human busy-ness - squirrels, rabbits, coyote, ground hogs, skunks, raccoon, and now foxes. This is actually the second time I've seen a fox in the daytime in our neighborhood but the first time so near a house. :) The fox I saw was slender and somewhat small. I couldn't tell its sex or age from looking. It/she/he looked disgusted with itself for missing the bird and then walked off through the bushes, obviously keeping its eyes open for more bird-jumping opportunities. I have heard them barking and calling at night (the breeding call of a female fox is an eerie scream like a terrified woman).

Life has a too-quiet-for-me pattern here chez Schiffer. Broken occasionally by trips to the post office or for doctor's appointments, I generally sew or do other hobby working in the early afternoon for two or three hours. I spend the rest of the day reading books, visiting Instagram to look at quilts or playing solitaire on my computer. I have a number of regular weekly Zoom meetings that keep me socially engaged (as well as one can be engaged without face-to-face meetings). Otherwise, I rather feel as if I'm composting. :)

Lately I have been spending an hour or two in the early evening watching my husband play video games and chatting with him. Since he doesn't watch television, it's our only opportunity for screen time together. :) Anything video-wise I watch is done streaming from my desktop computer as I long ago canceled our cable tv service.

Once a week my daughter calls and I get to chatter with her and my two grandsons (6 and 3 years old now). I deeply enjoy those chats even though they are generally small talk about our daily lives. One thing about the virus lockdown is that I have become convinced how important simple daily life is to my well-being. :)

I have two new projects going on at present in my sewing room. Earlier this year I bought a half-yard bundle of Kathy Doughty's newest fabric collection Earth Made Paradise by Free Spirit. It is rare for me to buy that large a selection of a collection - usually I limit myself to fat quarter bundles. I really like the colors and 'feel' of this one, though, so I splurged. Now I am finally starting on making a quilt with the beauties. :) I dug out my Go! accuquilt diecutter and cut a set of 4" tumbler patches using one strip of each of the  17 prints in the collection. 

Now I am sewing them together in rows, trying to do a somewhat random arrangement of each print. Here is my first four rows:

Tumblers startI've hung this piece vertically for space but I imagine this as a horizontal beginning to a central medallion of eight rows of eight tumblers each. As you can see, two of the opposite edges are slanting. I think I will use those two spaces to do some applique work a la Kathy's book, Organic Applique. I decided as I sewed a second section this size today that I will make another medallion quilt with my fabrics (rather like the Aboriginal medallion I made last year which now lives on my cushy living room armchair). I will decide as I go along what borders to create/add. The only decision I need to make soon is what color the 'background' fabric should be (I'm thinking to find a soft blue-gray like the background of the print with pink parakeets you see above). Market forces will determine what I find, of course. :)

The other thing I'm working on at the moment is a fabric covered book with sewn binding. Ali Manning of the Vintage Handmade Books group is leading a week-long challenge and teaching this project. So far I have made my two fabric covered book boards and the eight signatures of paper (I'm using quarter inch grid paper as I expect to use this as a quilting journal). Still to come are punching the holes and sewing together the book. I probably won't do that until early next week as I need to prepare for the Modern guild monthly meeting on Sunday afternoon. :)

So, not bored but not too busy, either. Life is flowing along here ... with a summertime casual beat.

:) Linda

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