A rite of summer…..

There are several things that tell me that summer is here and one of those is making Pesto!!! For some reason, basil LOVES our herb bed and we always put at least 5 plants into the ground.

Today was the day to harvest the Basil and turn it into creamy Pesto. Michael compared it to hog-killing day on the farm!!!

So, here is the day in photos…..






We had fun working together to make these delights and will sure enjoy them in the middle of winter!!! It will be a sweet reminder of the warmth of summer!!

What I did this Summer….a preview

For me there are five seasons each year….

  • Tax Season (January thru April)
  • Tax Season recovery (May)
  • Summer Fun (June thru August)
  • Travel Season (Sept thru mid-November)
  • Holiday Season (mid-November thru December)

For many years, the summer season was when we traveled but in the last few years more of the travel has moved to the autumn months meaning that Summer is MY FUN TIME!!!

As I got to this past weekend I was stressed knowing that June 1st was just around the corner and I didn’t have a plan yet!!! You see, I am a girl who LOVES a plan!!!

As Michael and I were walking on Sunday morning we were talking about my dilemma and the ideas started flowing. I started thinking about the things that I had missed so much in the last few “sheltering” months and decided that it was time to do something about it!!

I started off by making a list of friends to have over for coffee or lunch and then we added couples to have over for dinners. Since several of our favorite restaurants have opened back up, we also added going out for dinner at least once every two weeks……dinner IN a restaurant and NOT in our house!!

And speaking of food, I made Marinara sauce on Friday and REALLY enjoyed spending time in the kitchen….NOT a usual feeling for me. So, I added cooking a new dish each week.

Okay, that takes care of the social side of life….now let’s talk about the creative side. I am going to need some…..

One thing that I am really feeling is the need to get out of the house so I am going to visit some art galleries, museums, antique stores…..basically anything that is open right now!!!

I have recently pulled out the Color Wheel quilt and am starting to work on it again…..

It is a fun project but it takes a lot of thinking and planning and isn’t something that I can just pick up and whip out. So maybe I need to be working on two projects at one time…..one that is more creative and needs lots of thought and one that is super fast and easy. Since I have enjoyed piecing so much maybe I will aim for a Scrap Quilt. I hate to start a big one and then decide that I don’t like the pattern so maybe I will make a charity quilt in the design first…..just thinking out loud here!!

Finally, I need something to stretch my mind a bit. I love this quote…..

One of the local universities has several free online courses about creating websites. I have signed up for three of them and am already over halfway thru with the first one. My goal for the summer is to finish all three and hopefully use what I have learned to develop a website and strengthen this blog.

So now I have a basic plan for the summer and a more detailed plan for this first week. I am hoping that I can get to the end of August and happily look back on everything that I did last summer!! And if you are following this blog, you wont have to GUESS…..

….I will take you along for the ride.

And, in case you are worried, the year wont be devoid of travel. Covid permitting, Michael and I will spend 3 weeks in Mozambique in November!!! More good times to come.


Using the berries…..

After picking the berries on Friday, we decided that it was time to use some of them.   One of my friends had talked about making a Peach/Blackberry cobbler that was wonderful.   Even though I didn’t have her recipe, I did a Google search and came up with one.

It was very interesting because you first melted butter in the bottom of the pan, poured the batter in next and then topped it with the fruit……


It came out of the oven looking like this…..


….and tasted wonderful served warm with a bit of ice cream…..



Speaking of food for the summer, we have continued trying the Indian food that we bought last month.   We made a wonderful Korma Curry using chicken and a simple bottle of sauce……


….and another rice dish using Basmati and a few Tablespoons of sauce…..


SOOOOO much fun!!!


On Saturday, I found this comic strip in our paper……


….and I felt that it was an appropriate mantra for my summer.   I want to…..

DO…..some task from my list


DO…..some task

BE…..with friends and family

DO…..something fun and silly!!


And, when you think of my list, you HAVE to sing it to the tune of “Strangers in the Night”….that is what comes into my mind!!


On Saturday, I started out with a “Do” and scrapped and repainted the metal pole that holds our mail box.   It was rusting and looking pretty bad but 1-1/2 hours of scraping, cleaning and spraying with rust-resistant paint made it look great.   OK…one thing off of my “DO” list.

Next was to head to the studio and work more on the Dome quilt.  For some reason, I am nervous about this quilt and have to motivate myself to work on each new section.   At the end of the day, I had added only a little bit to the composition but had done a lot of thinking about where to go next……


I was VERY unsure about using the green, but I think that it will look good in the long run.  It has some of the same blues and a hint of gold in the pattern.

The arch supports are the next thing to tackle.  I am thinking about introducing some grey and black, but am still not sure.   Guess I need to just cut a few of the support pieces from different fabrics and see what I like!!!

…..more to come…..

Changing boats in mid stream……

Yesterday I didn’t end up spending time in the studio, but did do some creating in my flower garden.   Many of the perennials that I had planted last spring did not make it thru the harsh winter so I set out looking for new ones.   Then I had the thought that, since the bed was so small, I could easily plant annuals each year and increase my flower to foliage ratio!!!   So, I first weeded the bed and trimmed back some dead stems and then I enjoyed planting about 25 new plants….about half perennial and half annual.  


Now I just get to wait for them to grow and bloom!!!

I also had to deal with a pesky set of deer who have been enjoying a few of my leafier plants and pulling up my tulip bulbs by the leaves!!!!  Hopefully the application of a deer repellent will do the trick!!


This morning I met a fellow quilter for coffee and then returned home to get started on my “Blue Mosque” project.

Now, if you cast your mind back to the previous post about this project, I had all of my fabrics picked out, organized  and ready to use.

I started laying those fabrics in roughly the spots they would occupy……


But then I realized that there needed to be a light source and that the fabrics were going to be too dark.   SO…….

The fabric that I found to be the light in the window was blue and not tealDSC02269

….. so all of the other fabrics needed to change as well!!

At this point, I was starting to tense up because I wasn’t sticking with my original plan, but I gave myself a good talkin’ to and told myself to just go with the flow.  Apparently I listened  because I was able to go forward and keep making changes.

I had thought that the windows in each dome would be yellow, but as I tried lots of different fabrics, it became clear that these first ones needed to be bluish…..


I found one piece of hand-dyed fabric that I had bought at some point (I think that it was actually a drop cloth that someone just squeezed together to meld the dyes) and was able to cut the first set of windows from it.

I also made a decision to cut the windows as a unit rather than making each one individually.   This is a bit of a pain to cut, but it sure makes the layout process easier!!!!

At the end of my afternoon, the first dome was formed…..


I am fusing the pieces together and had originally thought that I would lay out the entire top before I started actually fusing.   After this one dome, I think that I will go ahead and fuse sets together as I go.

Tomorrow is free except for a trip to the gym early in the morning and dinner with good friends at their house in the evening, so I cant wait to get back to it!!!!