Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A Special Quilter's Request

It has been brought to my attention,
by a very sweet and caring nurse,
that the babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

located at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio,
need blankets
Home-made blankets. 
Blankets made with love.

Ordinarily, I would prepare a few during the course of
 building my other projects, probably setting them
up as a Leader/Ender project,
and donating a few at a time.

However, these fragile infants
are the babes of our brave military men and women,
so I'm asking for a little help.

Small quilts,  measuring 24" x 24" or larger,
are perfect for keeping the babies warmer in the isolate,
and provide them with a securitiy blanket as they get older. 
The nurse I mentioned will embroider the baby's name on the blankets
if the parents would like that. 

Please e-mail me for an address
if you care to send along a quilt or two. 
I am assuming the responsibility of collecting
and distributing them while I am here in TX.

Here's my first one.

Inspiration for this little quilt came from
She has some great tutorials:

It sure would be great if you could pass this along,
mention it to your friends,
mention it on your own blog.


Saturday, January 28, 2012

The Ranger to the Rescue

In a previous post, I shared a camping experience,
but had no photos to taunt you with.
After reading my blog,
The Ranger was kind enough to access his archived photos,
and send along a few.
I'd like to share them with you now.

Early morning mist.

Such serentity.  The lake is to the right, the ocean,
out of sight, is to the left, thus, a barrier beach.
The Leach's Storm-Petrels must have been nesting
in burroughs among the tree roots
in that stand of trees in the background.

My kayak is the red one.

Ocean side.

Does it get any better than this?
This is my life.
At least when the weather cooperates!!

Thanks, Ranger!!  I appreciate you.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Pincushion Parade

There is the most delightful pincushion parade at Love, Laugh, Quilt, and I just couldn't resist joining in!  (Oops! I'm a day late and a dollar short!  The linky is closed!)   Regular readers of my blog know I don't often post about my crafting adventures!

Inspired by Loft Creations and Stephanie's 'oh, so much fun to make' Ladyfingers and Sugar Baby Purse pattern, I woke one morning with these in my head!!  I jumped right out of bed and started working.

For more pincushion ideas,
head on over to
Grab a cup of tea and a snack!
You'll be there for awhile!

AND, while I'm doing the crafty thing today,
I'd like to invite you to check out Di's (Snippets 'n' Scraps)
and hopefully cast a vote in her favor!
The competition ends today!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Birding in our Sleep?

The ocean. 
Regarded by many as the last frontier. 

Perhaps that’s why I’m drawn to it so much.  When I was a young adult, I was an avid scuba diver. Now, I prefer to skim along the surface in my kayak, or walk along the water‘s edge, enjoying it’s always changing majesty. The air is fresh and clean. There are no ringing telephones, no shopping malls, no traffic or honking horns. 

But there are birds.

A couple of summer's ago, Little Sister and her husband drove up to Cape Breton from Maine and joined The Ranger and I for their summer vacation.  We packed up our kayaks - you'd be amazed at how much gear you can stuff into one of them - and  paddled to a barrier beach along the coast of Cape Breton, where we set up camp for a couple of days.  I wish I had pictures, but that was pre-computer, and they are home, stored on a disc.  Sorry. 
(Blogger doesn't seem to want to upload pictures today, anyway!).

During the night, we were awakened by what sounded like hundreds of little gremlins all around our tents.  They were Leach's Storm-Petrels, and if you go here and scroll down just a little bit, you can hear them, too.

Needless to say, we were excited, but confused.  We had no idea.  No, we didn't see them.  It was pitch black out.  But by the power of deduction, we discovered their identity.  Unlike our land birds, there aren't a lot of books about sea birds.  They are, afterall, a little more difficult to study.

That was before this awesome book, Petrels, Albatrosses, and Storm-Petrels of North America: A Photographic Guide by Steve N. G. Howell, was published by Princeton University Press.

Now I know that storm-petrels nest on remote ocean habitat and are nocturnal to avoid predation, that they have a keen sense of smell, and that they nest in tunnels, either abandoned by other creatures, or around the roots of trees.  (And right beside us there was a beach-side forested area.  The perfect spot.)  Because of all the wonderful pictures, I also know just what they look like, where else they are found, and all about  their tube-nosed cousins around the world.

This book has incredible information and lots of maps, and although the title suggests it is a guide for North America, trust me, it is so comprehensive, it can be used anywhere in the world!

What is a tube-nose, you ask?
Check out this book to learn more fascinating facts.
You'll want to book reservations on the next pelagic tour
closest to you!!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall...

...who's the fairest one of all?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

A Splash of Splendor...

...against a clear blue sky.
Quercus spp.
As a northeasterner, when I think of an evergreen,
I think of pine, spruce, and fir trees.
But here in Texas,
they have Live Oak trees.

And they are beautiful.

I saw this quote on the header of a wonderful blog,
In the Sonoran Sun, which I visited today.

Perhaps because I'm here,
exposed to the interminable sprawl of a cement city,
a landscape I'm so unfamiliar with,
this quote really spoke to me.

There are some who can live without wild things
and some who cannot.”
                                  Aldo Leopold

        "Considered by many as the father of wildlife management 
and of the United States’ wilderness system,
Aldo Leopold was a conservationist, forester,
philosopher, educator, writer, and outdoor enthusiast."

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Deep in the Heart of Texas

It is with great delight that I have returned
to TX to spend time with my daughter
and escape the ravages of a northeast winter.

Sadly, land surrounding the cities
is being eaten up by cement,
like oozing molten lava.

But there are still pretty country scenes,
typical Texas-style.

This gorgeous property is for sale, soon to be swallowed up
 by encroaching development.

This scene brings back memories of my childhood,
traveling the state by car, to visit all the relatives.
It's a big state.  We spent a lot of time in the car!

So much has changed throughout the course of my lifetime.
I'm not a proponent of developement. 
Some of it seems so senseless.
How many shopping strips/malls
with the same stores
need to be built?

How many drugstores should a smaller community host?
The 4th Walgreens has just been built in this community,
and that doesn't take into consideration all the others
that are available within the city limits.
Heaven forbid someone might have to drive 10 whole minutes
to get to the drug store.

And while I'm venting a little,
I think they should build a solid wall of doors
around the perimeter of the stores,
so everyone can park closely
and not have to walk more than a few steps.

(Blogger is not cooperating this morning,
and 2 pictures are all I have the patience
to try to include.)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Scrap-a-holics Unite

I interrupt this nature blog
to introduce a month of fun, scrappy quilt projects
sponsored by

It's already begun,
so hurry over to Jodi's site
and catch up!
There's something for everyone
every day of the week!

2012 Sew Scraps Along 150