Friday, 21 February 2014

Hints of Spring - Return visitors and some fresh starts

Spring is just around the corner. I hear it and I see small signs. We've been opening the windows a crack in the morning to air out the house and during this time each day I've heard the increase in bird activity. Clarisse has noticed too as she cries to us to open the bedroom blinds so she can get up on the sill and better watch the comings and goings. During the miserable weather lately we've had very few visitors to the feeder but there has been a flurry of activity this past week. Just look at all the return visitors!

Mr. and Mrs.

 A Gold Finch wearing his winter clothing

 Mrs. Downy

In the spirit of new beginnings I've had two new starts this past weekend. 

I started off with a design that has a real spring feeling to it. With Thy Needle and Thread Three Tulips.

We've had some overcast days lately so the light really hasn't been all that great for my pictures. I'm stitching this on Picture This Plus 32ct Legacy linen. It isn't the called for fabric and consequently I ran into a problem with the called for floss. I've swapped out just about every floss that is required for this design. The original floss either looked washed out on my fabric or the dye lot was considerably different. I spent an hour going through my existing stash and matching colours before I could actually start stitching. The floss I'm using for the bunny is one of Nina's threads which I won in an earlier giveaway. It's perfect and I'm really liking it. No knotting or twisting so far.

Hot on it's heels is Plum Street Samplers Love Thy Neighbour.

I've chosen another Picture This Plus linen for this stitch. It's 32ct Earthen. So far I've only had to change two floss due to the fabric colour. Paulette charted this design in a UK/Canadian version to accomodate our difference in spelling neighbour. I mentioned something to her in an email and within a very short time she sent me the file attachment containing the new chart with our spelling. Thank you Paulette!

I'm starting to feel a little house bound on account of the difficulties with my hip. I've been having an increase in pain since the new year and just the thought of going out with all that it entails (putting on boots, getting in and out of the car, driving, etc.) stops me in my tracks and I stay home. I've seen a surgeon now and an MRI has confirmed severe osteoarthritis of the joint. My right leg is now shorter than my left due to the wearing down of the head of the femur as it rubs bone on bone. I'm on the list for hip replacement and was originally scheduled for March but now I'm told it will be sometime in April. No definitive date yet. 

This past Monday my hubby took me for a drive for a change of scenery and then out for supper.  I brought the camera despite the fact that it was getting near twilight.  We spotted two owls on our travels. This first one was a fair distance away and I zoomed in for the pic which is why it's not all that focused. I also find the extreme temperatures make it difficult for the camera to focus properly.

We thought perhaps the owls had left our area but it appears not. It was a very cold afternoon and we were on the hunt for a pizza restaurant in a nearby village. Unfortunately the restaurant had closed for our Family Day holiday. So we switched direction and headed west to the town of Kemptville.  On the way there I spotted these two horses foraging in the snow, for what I'm not sure. They each wore blankets and looked so miserable. I wish the light had been better. Then you could see that one wore a red blanket and the other a green.

As we neared our destination the sun was slipping away from us and I grabbed this last photo.

A heavy rain is slowly washing away a good portion of our snow today. I'm hoping the white stuff doesn't make another appearance this season but I have my doubts. No robins yet!


  1. A beautiful post with a great start and fabulous pictures! Love the owl :)

  2. The bird pictures are lovely. I think I spotted a couple of chickadees frolicking in a tree yesterday, but I could be wrong.

    I hope you start feeling better soon, and that your hip replacement happens quickly and as painlessly as possible.

  3. Oh, beautiful new starts Lynn.
    It will be a looooooong time til our snow goes away.
    I am so sorry for your hip pain Lynn. You know I can relate, although I have ligament issues in my hip. I know that is different, but pain is pain. I am praying for you my friend.

  4. Your photos are stunning Lynn! I love your new starts too! That bunny is cute as a button!
    I've not seen any robins yet either, which is unusual because we typically see them by now. But not yet...they must know something we don't! Ha!

  5. Hi Lynn,
    I'm so sorry to hear that you're in pain. I hope they get that hip fixed up for you sooner rather than later. I find that stitching helps take my mind (somewhat) off my pain, but I've been having a rough couple of weeks here myself.
    Your Three Tulips looks great, as does your Plum Street piece. Don't you love those threads by Nina? I really like both fabrics you've chosen, and jotted them down to remember. Feel better! I love your bird photos!!

  6. Really pretty pictures. Love the birds and owls.

  7. I'm so sorry to hear you are in pain. My mother went through the same ordeal - it was tough to watch, but she was valient and stoic, as I know you are, too. Keep your good spirits and know others have you in their thoughts and prayers.

  8. Great bird shots and as usual love seeing your snowy owl pics!

    What fun to see PSS Love Thy Neighbour. :) I almost picked up the kit Mary Katherine was offering this month but I'm keeping to an "Only Now" supply acquisition policy. I need to buy backing for a quilt top and piece it; and also I'd joined a BOM quilt club and was waiting for the first installment, also wanting to make a start on a couple of blocks of a kit I purchased almost a year, that puts a new start at least a month out for me. Thus, no buying yet! :D

    I will eagerly watch your progress. :)

    I hope your issues with your hip a resolved sooner and better than you expect!

  9. Hope you feel better soon. Love all the pretty birdie pics. Great stitching start too!

  10. A lovely post and the owl is beautiful. Love your stitching starts!

  11. So sorry you need a hip replacement, but it should help you out a lot once you're healed. I've sure loved all your bird pics lately. The owls are amazing!

  12. Beautiful pictures - spring is on it's way for sure

  13. Your Tulip start is looking good, as is the neighbour piece.
    That was very nice of Paulette.
    Thanks for sharing the bird pics also. We have a lot of Cardinals now and a Downey Woodpecker couple come visit the suet feeder here in WI.
    I hope they resolve your hip issues soon. :(
    You know I love your header pic!

  14. I love your latest starts Lynn. I'm sure you're right, Spring is certainly on its way.
    I hope you get a set date for your hip soon, do keep us updated. Best wishes.

  15. Lovely new start Lynn.
    Sorry to hear about the increased hip pain. I will be thinking of you as you go through your hip replacement journey.
    Lovely pics as always. I have enjoyed the owls so much.

  16. Lovely photos and beautiful stitching. Your new starts are progressing wonderfully well, looking forward to seeing that bunny grow, he looks so cute. I hope you get your hip replacement soon, it can't be any fun.

  17. Love the bird pictures...I'm a teeny bit jealous of your cardinals, as we don't have them here...

    I know a number of folks who've had the hip replacement thing, and they all talk about what a great success it is... hopefully you'll get in sooner than expected, and it some pain relief!

  18. Sad to read you are in so much pain, April will be here before we know it and hopefully you will have some relief. Lovely pics from your trip out with hubby and I love the birdlife that you see from your window.
    Spring must be about to appear.... surely!

  19. Great bird photos, Lynn. I love cardinals and wish we had them here. You managed to capture our state bird which I've only seen here once or twice. Go figure! So sorry to here about your hip. That is no fun. Hope you're getting in some good stitching despite the discomfort. Love your current projects. Take care!

  20. All these lovely birds, it must be fun to watch them.
    Sorry to hear that your pain has increased. I hope for you that your surgery appointment will come sooner rather than later so that you don't have to wait for too long.

    Two great new starts. And as usual I would also buy these if I weren't on a that stash diet, lol.