Early June Slice of Life

This is my dog Lily, who I inherited years ago when a neighbor family had to move.

LILY

She has lots and lots of hair :)

Lily and jugs older photo from april

She rebels against getting it brushed or cut and ran into the bushes to hide until I could coax her out with treats.  After a good half hour of brushing her and cutting out mats, etc. half of the back yard was covered with white fur.

An hour later it was all gone, gathered by the birds to replenish their nests! :)

Speaking of birds, I have a back porch and next to it are a Rose of Sharon and tall grasses. I was weeding back there the other day….some NEW vine-weed had turned up and was winding itself around the grass planting. Once I got a lot of it out, wearing gloves and hoping that it wasn’t poisonous, I discovered this tiny nest with little eggs the size of my fingernails….a sparrow’s nest.

I was surprised at how neat it was since a sparrow family always builds under an awning on the side and it usually quite comical and messy :)

Like this one with a baby peeking out a few years ago….

baby sparrow peek a boo

But they are sweet to watch once they are learning to fly, though Mama is still feeding them:

mama feeding baby

I’ve had more vines and weeds to deal with than the aforementioned one and plenty of grass cutting as we have had continual precipitation. Lots of planted seeds are coming up and the little tomato plants were to the point where I had to stake and tie them the other day.

A few perennials are in bloom…

Here is one that was here when I moved here…a sort of Queen Anne’s Lace ground cover that I have to be careful with ( pulling up MOST lest it take over yet letting a few go to flower )

In this collage you can see how a few are allowed to pop up amongst the spirea bush in the front. The spirea in the back is blooming as well as a few other flowers here and there.

My smaller Day Lily on the side is in bloom though the tall ones in the front are just getting ready. I have no clue what the pretty purple flowers on the bottom right of the collage are. Usually the birds or the Universe bring me weeds…this was a pleasant surprise :)

While the end of May had extremely hot weather and felt like mid-July, we have cooled down and I am enjoying my early June Slice of Life the last few days where the temperatures are just hitting the mid-70’s, as they SHOULD be doing in what is still technically spring!

My DIL’s birthday was on the weekend and while I didn’t get any pictures her aunt and I worked on a dinner together…and yay, there are leftovers :)  Chicken and Biscuits, Mashed Potatoes, Brownies and Birthday Cake. Leftovers are always a wonderful thing :)

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Slice of Life & Progress on 2 Quilting Projects

In my last post  ( “She’s Probably Frying Zucchini in Heaven” )  I let it be known that my sister’s MIL had passed on and what a wonderful woman and legendary Italian cook she was ( HERE )

She was a devout Catholic and while I was raised as a Protestant and participated in many Protestant denominations over my lifetime, at one point I decided to explore the Catholic faith and am now officially a Catholic, though I attend sporadically at this point.

Still, at the funeral mass the ritual washed over me in comforting waves…and the priest had known her for all of his life. His mother and her were in the same maternity ward giving birth to him and to my BIL.  His parents were my BIL’s godparents and my BIL’s were HIS godparents.

That loving and compassionate priest  couldn’t get through the service without getting choked up on numerous occasions.

While I was over there with my BIL on that horrific night that we found her, fallen out of bed, and had assisted him and stayed until the ambulance came, I did not go on to the hospital.   I got the whole story later. She’d had a stroke and her heart was going in to failure but the tests showed a bit of infection and pneumonia setting in so it may have been a virus of some sort that heralded the end.

She was taken to a local hospital and then life-flighted to one in Pittsburgh.  She passed on early the next morning.

Both my niece and Steve, my BIL,  said that towards the very end a Presence and deep peace could be felt in the room and her attention left them and her eyes lit up and she began reaching towards the ceiling / air.  This did not surprise me as I have researched near-death-experiences off and on over the years….

The “Wake” was held at her house and while many people contributed a wonderful variety of foods, there were two big ‘hits’ :)   My BIL brought homemade canned pickles and peppers that were from his mom’s recipes, and the granddaughter that had come up from the south to stay there replicated her spaghetti sauce recipe, using the last of her canned tomatoes from the cellar.

Meanwhile prior to this and afterward life went on. My oldest son is in Missouri but the two others were pallbearers. Photos of them, the kids on the weekend with their cousins at a local place where they can jump on trampolines, the twins turning 8 years old, and one of them stopping by for cookies….

Meanwhile the drone of lawnmowers permeates the neighborhood as it just did a few days ago…I and many of my neighbors mowed on Sunday or Monday, had rain, and are mowing it all again now. My back yard had lush grass that had grown a good 2-3 inches since Monday afternoon when I had last mowed.

The crabapple tree is getting ready to display her spring glory soon…

I finished up the 3rd border of the Flower Basket Medallion :

I finished up another fan quilting section on my Rose of Sharon hand quilting project, marked another section and started again… I always get questions about this fan marking so once again, you can check it out at Fun With Barb’s Etsy Shop 

I have done traditional echo quilting and crosshatch on several quilts in the past…for his one I am enjoying the fan stencil :)

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I’ll be putting some more hand quilting stitches in on Sunday and joining other Slow Sunday Stitchers at Kathy’s Quilts