Monday, March 29, 2010

Journal Cover

I am just so proud of myself.  This morning I completed a Journal Cover that had been featured on the Moda Bake Shop  web page back in November.  Roslyn Mirrington of  Bloom shared a wonderfully written tutorial  that I squirreled away for another time, and that time was now!  I used fabric from my scrap basket and embroidery floss that I had purchased for next to nothing from a flea market.

I just love the little embroidered flowers!

I have to confess that I had to take the final step apart once
because the cover fit a little too snug!

But I am pleased enough with the results to share
here today.  Excuse the hastily taken pictures. 
 I was so very excited!

When I showed The Ranger, he said he'd have to get me
to make covers for all his guide books out of
camouflage fabric.  He said that when I showed him
my guide book tote bag, too!!  He'll need to purchase
lots of camouflage fabric if everything I make I
have to re-make out of camouflage fabric for him! 
It's a good thing forest rangers don't wear skirts!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Field Guide Tote Bag

Delighting in time spent out of doors, observing the nuances of nature from the magnificent to the subtle, is not my only passion.  I am a quilter, an overal general crafts person, and I am often in the flurries of a sewing frenzy! If I'm not out of doors immersed in nature, and I am not quilting, I am making beautiful greeting cards from the photographs my sister and I have taken.

On a recent trip to Massachusetts, I purchased a pattern for a small tote bag that was fun and interesting to make, and just a cute as can be. 

Here's one version, made from my scrap box, as a birthday gift for an 8 year old neighbor friend.
So when I showed The Ranger my first finished bag, he said it would fit a guide book perfectly.  Well, this man's a genius!  The idea rolled around in my subconscious for a couple of days, and one morning I woke bright and early and got to work.

(click pictures to enlargen)

I upcycled an old but hardly worn corduroy shirt for this project,
incorporated the breast pockets into it, one on the front,
one on the back (they have velcro closures). 
I constructed the strap to detach from one side, sewed a
measuring tape down the center, and voila!
It is intended to hang diagonally across the torso
and rest at the hip.

I sent it to Little Sister (the "Holly"
of KaHolly, to use as she ventures
out this spring in search of those ephemeral
blooms and masses of frog eggs,
to "test out in the field" for me! 
You can see where guide books
usually end up!  Actually, it's quick
and easy to tuck them like that!

I can't wait until she receives it and gives me some feedback.  Now to make one for myself.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


"If a child asked me a question that suggested even a faint awareness of the mystery behind the arrival of a migrant sandpiper on the beach of an August morning, I would be far more pleased than by the mere fact that he knew it was a sandpiper and not a plover." Rachel Carson

To see more CameraCritters from around the globe,

Thursday, March 11, 2010

It's All in a Name

My wildlife blog list now covers countries all around the world.  It is so very interesting to read about different birding experiences, visit new landscapes, and view the gorgeous pictures of birds I've never heard of before!  I've learned many new words as I've read through these posts!  So when I spotted an article entitled:  Names of Groups of Birds, my interest was peeked.  Here is what I found in a nutshell: 
"The collective nouns for different groups of birds can be a fun bit of birding lingo to use when describing what you see in the field."  Here is a list from Melissa Mayntz in an article she wrote for Birding.

Birds of Prey (hawks, falcons): Cast, cauldron, kettle
Cormorants: Flight
Crows: Murder, congress, horde
Ducks: Raft, team, paddling
Eagles: Convocation, congregation
Finches: Charm
Flamingos: Flamboyance
Game Birds (quail, grouse, ptarmigan): Covey, pack, bevy
Geese: Skein, wedge, gaggle, plump
Gulls: Colony
Herons: Siege, sedge, scattering
Hummingbirds: Charm
Jays: Band, party, scold
Larks: Bevy, exaltation, ascension
Owls: Parliament, wisdom, study
Pelicans: Squadron, pod, scoop
Penguins: Colony, huddle
Pheasants: Nye, bevy, bouquet
Plovers: Congregation : Host, quarrel, knot
Starlings: Chattering, affliction
•Swallows: Flight, gulp
Swans: Wedge, ballet, lamentation
Woodpeckers: Descent
Wrens: Herd
Ravens: Murder, congress, horde
Rooks: Clamour, parliament
Sparrows, chime

I do so like the sound of "a charm of hummingbirds" or "a chime of sparrows"!  A "congress of ravens"!  And sometimes, "an affliction of starlings" is exactly right!! 

Sunday, March 7, 2010

In Light of it All

Sooner or later, everyone is touched by cancer of some form or other.  Sadly, this is now true for me.  My aunt has just completed treatment for breast cancer in Massachusetts, and my 'sister-in-law' is in the midst of treatments in Maine.

I would like to take this opportunity to share an up-lifting You Tube video that the Waldo County General Hospital (Maine) has produced in support of their oncology department, patients, and staff.  My 'sister-in-law' and her husband are even featured for a few minutes during the video!! 

(WOW!!  I can't believe I successfully embedded a You Tube video in my post!!  I'm learning every day!)

Thank you for taking a few minutes of your time to view this video.

On a much lighter note, there is still time to enter the give-away at my daughter's site!  She crafts beautiful greeting cards and is giving away a "grab bag" full to promote her new Etsy shop!  Although e-mail has become many people's communication of choice, everyone still delights in finding something special
in their old fashioned mail box!
Click HERE to enter in her drawing!!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Great Egret

This is the final post of my trip to Texas
during the Christmas holiday. 
I saved, what I think, is the best photo for last.  I have been coveting this photo, even have it as the screensaver on my laptop. 

This is the Great Egret (Ardea alba),

feeding in the brackish waters within Brackridge Park.
See his stance, how he just stands and waits!
Oh, to be so patient!

Great Egrets were all over the Texas landscape during my visit.  On a weekend journey to Houston, Kirsten and I observed them foraging in the farmer's fields all along the highway.  Here in the Northeast, we anxiously await their return in the spring, where they are mostly found in the marshes and other quiet waters.

They are strictly carnivorous, their bills adapted for spearing and grasping.  In the dry agricultural fields, they prey on grasshoppers and rodents.  In the wetlands, their food of choice is mostly fish, although they also dine on crustaceans, frogs, salamanders, snakes and aquatic insects.

Usually, they nest in trees, shrubs, or thickets near water.

In the late 1800's, the Great Egret's plumes were quite fashionable on ladies' hats, and the population
was nearly wiped out.  But early in the twentieth century, conservationists recognized the urgent need to protect this species, and they made an amazingly rapid comeback. To this day, the Great Egret is the symbol of the National Audubon Society.

This is an entry in WeekEnd Reflections.  To see more photos, click HERE!
And to see more CameraCritters from around the world, click on THIS SPOT!