Tuesday, March 21, 2023

March Ups and Downs

 Life is so complicated, full of surprises and ups and downs.

Speaking of downs, there were two falls, one on my booty and one on my face. I take the blame for poor decisions and resolve to be even more cautious. I lost the small wallet where I keep some cash and my most-used credit card and a bank debit card for withdrawing cash. I tapped the credit card in CVS, loaded my car, and drove home. Later that day I was texted asking about charges on both cards; when I looked in my purse the small wallet was gone and I figured I had dropped it leaving the store. I'll get all the money back, but the little wallet was a handmade leather zipper purse--a treasured gift. 

Among the ups, Granddaughter Kelsey Boone in Waxahachie, Texas had her third-grade students send me Valentines and then later I got to read (by Zoom) The Llama's Pajamas by my late dear friend Carol Vickers. Here are the front and back covers. 


I made a Fidget Quilt to be given to the Alzheimer's unit at Forrest General Hospital and quilted a top that Bonnie Bolt had planned and Linda Ginn had pieced. 

It's not for pretty, but to give a patient something to hold and handle

Elizabeth thought it was for her

I'm eagerly looking for the arrival in April of Quiltfolk Issue 26, which features Mississippi. My good friends Charlotte Timmons, Julia Graber, and several MQA officers are also pictured. In addition to a subscription and a couple of back issues, I ordered the Dogs issue, where Charlotte Timmons and my SAQA friend Holly Cole are featured. You can read about the photo shoot here.
Issue 26, Mississippi

Martha with Elizabeth, Mississippi Orange Peel on couch
I had a delightful surprise last weekend when some youth from Crosspoint Community Church visited me and demonstrated living out the gospel message of helping where they saw a need. My yard looks so clean and neat after this eager crew picked up limbs, bagged up pine straw from the roof, and many other tasks. I baked a pound cake and enjoyed their cheerful and helpful work ethic. They had so much fun pruning with my cordless clippers we had to direct where to stop. I don't get to see my great-grands in Texas very often, and just being around these lively teens was a special pleasure.

Grayson Hinnant entertaining with a little Scott Joplin on my piano
L to R, Joey Hutchinson, Kaden Leslie, Archie McGee, Todd Jackson, Mason Shivers

The pine straw was thick on the roof

Scraping moss off the paving stones

A mountain of limbs and pine straw

The City truck picked it all up two days later

Grayson planting elephant ears

Saturday, March 4, 2023

My Musical Week

This week has been extra-special because it has been packed with music! The USM Symphony Orchestra and Choral Union thrilled the audience on Tuesday night with the Verdi Requiem. I've sung this before but this time I got to enjoy it without the sacrifice of aching feet, knees, and back. The participants obviously had an experience they will never forget.

The spring Meistersingers concert, An American Portrait, will be this Sunday, March 5, and we have had Sunday, Thursday, and Saturday rehearsals, so this week has been rich with music. 

Spring is coming on with azaleas blooming profusely. This is the view from my front porch, and it gets more beautiful every day. The trees are still bare, but the azaleas are really eye-catching.

Inside, the cat tree is now Elizabeth's favorite spot. She window watches, scratches the posts, fights the dangling mice, and takes long naps. She is a tight fit, but seems quite comfortable. Rahrah is happy to sleep somewhere else, so there's no jockeying for position.

There is a little quilting going on, mostly experimenting with solid colors in Brenda Gael Smith Dreamlines project. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

February, Cat Tree Success

After the Quiltfolk photoshoot excitement it seems I've just been content to watch the rain and foggy days creep by.  I did finish a small Hidden Nine Patch quilt that Linda and I had been working on  lately. She cut the pieces and sewed the blocks; I sashed and bordered; she quilted; and I added the binding. It will be donated through our guild, Pine Belt Quilters. 

The cat tree is getting more attention with a little exploring every day. It has become a good squirrel watching shelf. Elizabeth really fills up a shelf with no room to spare. 

My Southern Fiber Artists group met in Hattiesburg last weekend and we firmed up plans for our exhibit at the Columbus Arts Council gallery in Columbus, MS, during the month of April. We will have our Intense Color Project pieces on display along with other artwork we want to show. Julia Graber will speak at the opening night April 6, and Jackie Watkins will conduct a class on Saturday, April 15. 

I was surprised to find a few flowers on my walk today. Since our temps have ranged into the 70s some days, the azaleas are beginning to bloom. This large bush drops its blooms to make an interesting pathway. The Burford Holly bushes are full of red berries.

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Quiltfolk Photoshoot

What an exciting day I had last week when the Quiltfolk photoshoot team and a writer visited Hattiesburg to prepare for Issue #26 featuring Mississippi. Quiltfolk is a print-only ad-free magazine published quarterly highlighting a new state in every issue. Issue #26 will be out in April; subscription and coupon codes are on their website. 

While the team worked to stage the quilts they wanted to photograph, I enjoyed capturing interesting behind-the-scenes shots. Trevor and Azuree (photographers) and Sharbreon (writer) were delightful!

The cats had a great time with extra people in the house. Rahrah did not miss anything and had to be removed often. Elizabeth was content to get comfortable and watch. Trevor had to use the lint roller for his dark jacket.

Friday, January 27, 2023

The Cat Tree - Part 2

Finally, after about a month, the cats are becoming curious enough to climb on the cat tree. I moved  the little red table (that Elizabeth used to spend lots of time overseeing the back yard) beside it, also tried putting treats on the shelves. Rahrah doesn't like the treats, but finally decided to investigate the upper platforms. Elizabeth is happy just playing beneath the thing. 

Brave Rahrah

Elizabeth reaching for treat from her red table

Rahrah watching Elizabeth reach for a treat

Elizabeth finding another treat

I moved the Norfolk Island Pines to the front porch, hoping it's not too early. Remember the succulent filled pumpkin I made on October 29? I may have to murder it to get rid of it.