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The Middle of May

We now know where we will be living in Vancouver. It's an area of town called Yaletown, and from what I hear and read, it was once a warehouse district that is now trendy. So there you go. The condo is absolutely lovely, but I will admit there is little funkiness to be found, and for me that will be a little hard to live with. Remedying that situation, I'm making another scrappy quilt for the patio/balcony which I suspect will be more than a little chilly for this Florida girl. As well, it is a way of taking my fabric with me as I intend to leave the drawers as they are until we return.

You begin by cutting loads of different fabrics into 2 x 3.5 rectangles. To mix them all up, I read somewhere about putting them all into the dryer, and it worked pretty well.
Ha ha...new meaning for tumble dry! Actually, when I opened the door, they indeed, just tumbled out! Putting them all into a bag, I then made my way to the sewing room where I began pairing them, the uglier the match the better.
In all there will be 720 pieces in the quilt, so it takes quite a few pairs to make that happen.
The above is what you call chain piecing because you just keep on sewing those pairs together, pretty much continuing, until either your bobbin thread runs out, or your piles do. Next you join those with other pairs, eventually making a small block with eight strips, again the uglier the better.
I wasn't kidding right? For some folks it makes their head spin looking at a quilt like this, but in the end, it mostly is a riot of color that I hope will add that touch of funk the condo is missing, So far I have five rows together, and about three more waiting to join ,so by this time next week it should be a done deal. As you can imagine, it takes a lot of sewing, but with my darling husband gone all week, I've got plenty of time on my hands.

Here's a shot of my computer screen that says a lot, if you know what to look for.
That little notice in the upper right hand corner? A reminder from facebook that it is Bruce's birthday-- as if I needed reminding! He was not here to celebrate, but it wouldn't be the first time. Then too, there are loads of "screen shots" that I've taken for the guys at Apple, and I mean that literally. Will called yesterday morning a little after 8, and after all this time, he realized he didn't have what it took to make the photo moving process succeed. I am now hooked up with Adam in Austin, and we are making some progress, although as soon as I finish this post, he's the first person I will be calling.

Does my family know how to send great cards, or what?
The card from Matt and Tom, inexplicably, took two weeks to arrive from London. So strange.

I've also had loads of time for birding, and some super good things have come my way, beginning with a few days ago, when I rode up to Nell's house before 7, and found this!!
Mom and the kids together in a very low tree!! I was literally jumping off of my bicycle when I saw this, leaving it beside the curb.
For this shot I'm standing in front of Victor's house, looking up at the Swallowtail who is still hanging around. (those are stray feathers falling in case you are wondering.)
While I was standing under the Kite, I began hearing the squawking of a Blue Jay which could mean only one thing....Papa must be around as well. Guess what? He was in the tree above my bicycle! In my excitement at seeing Mom and the kids, I never thought to look up. I watched in fascination as the BJ kept knocking into Papa who merely flinched, although after about the tenth hit, he had finally had enough. Taken before he flew higher:
The other members of the owl family remained low in the tree allowing me to get pretty darn close.

No sound came out of this big mouth,
Now one thing I've learned is that owls have three membranes on their eyes, and I think we are going to see all three in the next couple of photos. The juvenile facing the sun was pretty lively compared to the other one. When he stretched out his wing, I was thrilled as I've never gotten a photo like this in good lighting.
Those legs are getting pretty long aren't they? Here is another shot of all three,
Aren't those eyes something? After a time, Mom and the lively one flew across the street, leaving the quiet one behind. Eventually though, she rewarded my patience.
Believe you me, I never take these moments for granted because sometimes you just get lucky, and they may never happen again. I invited my new photographer friend Candy to meet me yesterday morning early, and although the Swallowtail was around, no kids could be found. Candy just kept gazing up at the Swallowtail, exclaiming over and over again, "isn't she beautiful?"
Asking her if she'd like to see the bee hive, she was more than happy to walk over there, having never seen one before. She was just as awed as we are, or at least I think you guys are impressed. Walking back over, hoping the kids would be around now, that was not the case, however, Victor's sprinklers were running, and Mama was having it both ways when we returned.
During our walk she told me about a few new birds in town so, as you can imagine, I just had to go out in the baby car this morning to see what I could see. I've got lots to both say, and show you, but I know you may already be on photo overload by now, so just a few until another day.

Mama Swan and her little brood at Lake Davis:
It took me quite a bit of sleuthing, but I think I've identified the bird below as a Green Heron; I'm thinking this is another first sighting for me.
For those readers who don't live in Florida, and I'm thinking there are a few of you, what the bird is perched on are Cypress tree knees which jut out of the water along the shoreline.

So much more to relate, but if I ever hope to finish up this computer project, for now I will say goodbye. I hope you enjoyed this post and the interesting birds found within.

yours truly,

Gail

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