Sunday, April 5, 2020

More of the same

This has been a hard week with the stink of paint coming from the house to the south.

When the weather was nice, I escaped to the park and filled a few bags with weeds.

Two of the areas I have been working on for a little over a year are looking quite nice with weeds well under control.

The "good grass" does not increase by flower and seed, but by runners. In those two areas, the weeds were so thick they had overcome the grass, so I selected runners from places where grass was creeping over cement and rocks and re-purposed them in the bare spaces. Without competition, those spaces are looking much better. One problem is the "gardeners" who come to rake the leaves and often dislodge the new runners. The trick is to get there before they do and remove the leaves from those spots.

My other outdoor activity is sweeping the street.
(if my narrow ally could be called that).

I start at my gate, all the way south to the park corner, on the left side, then back up on the right side, past my house to the small side street and back.
I clean the drains as I go, as the flower petals from the Illicium clog the drains causing a lake in the middle of the road each time it rains.

Narita-san to the north has a great big garden that always provides plenty of fallout in every season. Now that his plum is leafing out, the camellias are falling. Lots of petals blowing in the wind, and what I don't sweep up by his wall today, I will be sweeping up in front of my gate tomorrow. I like to get them before they are pounded into the pavement by walking feet.  I guess if you look at the bag you can see the color ... two of these trees and one white one that is yet to begin falling.

Yesterday my morning coffee was drunk to the tune of banging and clanging of more scaffolding being set up.

I had hoped the sound was it being taken down and went out to look. Nope. And why, with the curb space empty across the street, did they have to pile all those heavy metal poles on my flowers?

I was able to lift the smaller ones off but those long ones were just too heavy. Both the house to the south of mine and the one across the street belong to the same family. They carefully
covered the owners car each day ... and a good thing because they are not the neatest painters in the world ... paint splatters on the street where the tarp doesn't reach.

And, today, my kerria bush had one flower.

I guess it is following orders from the governor to keep apart from all others.

I think I heard other buds whispering to let them know when it was finished so that they could have their turn in the sun.

So... what do I do with the rest of my days?

The weight of Sunday's snow Pulled my planter off the wall, hooks and all. I put the plants back in the planter and set it up on top of my fish tank while waiting for the wall to dry so I could replace the hooks with cement glue.

Then, before I had a chance, the big wind came and blew the planter back to the ground. Oh my, what a mess.

Monday mornings as usual I will drive into town to deliver onigiri to my homeless friends.
During the week I will struggle with Mr. Zoom, trying to get into meetings if I can ... and sometimes give up when he doesn't like my password or name ... wondering why I bothered to record it all in my computer notebook if it only worked once...
After a few sunny days, the planter returned to it's space on the wall. The plants got rearranged and some went to the upstairs balcony that is a bit more sheltered and has more sun.

And, of course, a lot of quilting.

The last ones I made, I used big stitch, black on the light fabrics and white on the dark. Since the backing ended up being all white, it was not going to hide the stitches on the back, so I decided after quilting it all in the ditch that I would just use regular quilting.

I drafted a butterfly to fit the large areas and used colored thread on the light segments and white on the dark. It really does not show up very well.

So far I have 12 blocks quilted and still a lot to go. I am getting a bit faster with practice and I hope as I near the edges it will be a bit easier without so much bulk on my lap.

If I get tired, there is a lot of tidying up for me to do. And... a bit of mending ... wondering why the left knee of every pair of pants have holes or almost holes... Tomorrow looks like it will be sunny. Will the painters be back? I asked their schedule but they only said "soon".  It won't be too soon for me ... but the weeds are still growing and the quilt is waiting ... so ... we shall see

Hope you are all safe and keeping well.


  1. Life continues, but the new normal is anything but that. We can always find some handwork, some gardening, no new plants, one seed catalogue gives inspiration and we can do an online order, and what bliss when the packets arrive. Building is all on hold down here, apart from essential construction that had been started, and the streets and the roads are deserted on a Sunday. Maybe today the essential workers will be out, I am do thankful for all those who brave the hidden dangers to give us food on the shelves, and so much more. Keep some quilty stuff handy, Julie, it is always a great way to lift the heart to some happiness.XXXX

  2. Your butterfly quilting is lovely. I love the scrappy feel of this quilt. It sounds like quite a job keeping your little street clean and tidy. The kerria bush flower is a lovely yellow.

  3. Beautiful quilt and quilting. That's too bad about your flowers being crushed. Hopefully, they will bounce back after the poles are moved. Maybe even stronger than before.
    I'm glad to read you are staying safe and healthy while keeping busy.

  4. You do a lovely job with all your cleaning and weeding.
    I am pleased the plants are sharing their flowers and that you can enjoy them.
    That quilting is progressing well.
    Take care.

  5. Sounds like you're getting your exercise trying to keep your street clean and the park free of weeds. That yellow flower is so pretty! I like your butterfly corner design - it's the perfect size for those corners! Stay well and safe - ;))

  6. Sorry about the painters. I got tired of sewing face masks (a few still need to be finished) and have turned to reading instead. Not much concentration.

  7. HI Julie, You are one of the most productive and busiest people we know ! The butterfly quilting pattern you drafted is so pretty ! It fits the space perfectly. We always enjoy seeing your lovely workmanship. All the sweeping and weeding you are doing makes your neighborhood look beautiful. The people around you are most fortunate to have you as a neighbor. Take care, with many blessings, from Marina and Daryl Lynn

  8. So glad your cross neighbour has been replaced by a nice young couple. you are definitely someone who makes the world a better place!