May 4, 2022: A New Project!!; ”Awe Walks” and an interesting sighting at the pond

Greetings dear readers! I enjoy hand work – applique, quilting, and embroidery embellishment – very much, but I also enjoy machine piecing, especially FPP. I like to have a project in the machine piecing phase always in progress so I can indulge in that pleasure on most days. So, after recently finishing the piecing of ”The Inner Reaches of Outer Space,” I wanted to get a new FPP project going. What to do? I’ve been itching to use the new contemporary florals I bought last summer and ideas have been floating through my mind for months. I kept coming back to baskets and the FPP pattern – the block is 6 inches square – I designed last September for Halloween Baskets:

Remember this monthly mini?

For a while I’ve been wanting to make a larger basket quilt with a completely different color scheme and thinking that this basket pattern with the contemporary florals would be a good marriage. I decided to give it a try. I love it and am off and running!

I’m having a great deal of fun choosing the 4 fabrics needed for each block – basket, trim/feet, handle, and background:

For the baskets, I cut out the shape on paper and I find a spot on the fabric I like:

Here are 8 more blocks, so far:

All together, so far:

I’m loving it! I’m making the handles with a bias tape maker and hand appliquéing them before sewing the pieces together. Of course, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing😊. I made 3 baskets before realizing that – to my eyes – the handles were too thin:

I set these aside (this month’s mini?🙂) and started over, making wider handles. The change is subtle, but just what I wanted. I am pretty sure this quilt is eventually going to my granddaughter, Ursula, who is currently 3. I’m calling it Ursula’s Spring Baskets. All 3 grandchildren received baby quilts from me and each of the older 2 got larger quilts for their beds at age 7. This basket quilt will probably be twin or queen size – not sure Ursula will have to wait till she’s 7 for it, but there’s no hurry to finish it!😊 I have no idea what the setting is going to be, whether there will be sashing or alternate blocks, etc. For now I’m just having fun making the blocks!

There was an article in the NY Times this week called, ”An ’Awe Walk’ Might Do Wonders For Your Well Being.” The gist is that if, on your walks, instead of ruminating on your tasks ahead and/or your concerns, you focus on what’s interesting and/or beautiful around you, and cultivate a sense of awe, it’s a lot better for your well being. Of course, this is what I’ve been trying to do on all my walks!

Recent ”awe” sightings:

A (broken) egg; size indicates possibly a wild turkey?

A patch of moss on the forest floor with perfectly regular rounded edge:

I recently learned that this is called ”turkeytail fungus” because of its resemblance:

My friend and I could not figure out what was causing the green color in the water (it wasn’t a reflection) – had to have been some sort of plant life – but it was quite beautiful!

As I was starting to head home from a recent walk to the pond, I heard a splash and saw something swimming. It looked like a dog, but I didn’t see any owner around. It dived under the water and didn’t come up for at least 30 seconds so I knew it wasn’t a dog! It didn’t look like a beaver. Then I got a side view and knew it was a river otter!

Sorry I couldn’t get a better photo. The Lamprey River is about a quarter mile through the woods further on from the pond. River otters are adept at traveling over land. Their main diet is fish, but they eat frogs. I’ll bet this one was feasting on tadpoles and there might be some frogs though I’ve not seen them yet. This was a first time sighting for me – talk about ”awe”!😊

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day, Gladi

20 thoughts on “May 4, 2022: A New Project!!; ”Awe Walks” and an interesting sighting at the pond

  1. 107sophie May 4, 2022 / 5:00 pm

    the color combinations on Ursula’s baskets are just wonderful. Re: “Awe Walks” — think you had the knack for those from way back as the photos from your walks have always been so beautiful!

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:05 pm

      Thank you Sophie!

  2. Wendy C Reed May 4, 2022 / 7:39 pm

    You amaze me! Just pick up some fabrics and start a new and marvelous quilt. I adore these baskets. And, I agree the handles do look better just that tad wider. Ursula will love this quilt! I really enjoy your nature photos. We had two awe walks last weekend and saw (and smelled) trailing arbutus both times. We both mentioned how nice it is to slow down and enjoy the walk and the natural beauty of our world. Thanks for sharing your “awe walk”.

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:07 pm

      Thanks so much Wendy! We’re both lucky to live in beautiful places!

  3. acityquilter May 4, 2022 / 11:03 pm

    lovely baskets….oooh playing with fabric is sooo fun! i think it’s a turkey egg also…there was a show on pbs about a man who raised some from the egg…very interesting…beautiful nature photos…

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:08 pm

      Thanks Grace! Playing with fabric has become an essential (as has walking) in my life!

  4. Janet O. May 5, 2022 / 5:49 am

    Oh, my, those baskets are stunning. Just fresh, and happy prints. The striped handles on your previous basket quilt had more “presence” because of the stripes. These handles seem perfect with just that extra bit of width. Good call.
    I love the idea of “awe” walks. I like to listen to the bird sounds, pick up interesting rocks, observe cloud formations, bask in the sunset, or just enjoy the majesty of the mountains.
    The moss and fungus are fascinating. And so are river otters. I’ve seen them a time or two.

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:11 pm

      Thanks Janet! It sounds like we enjoy a lot of the same things. I’m having fun using these contemporary fabrics with this project.

  5. Alison May 5, 2022 / 6:28 am

    Your new quilt is stunning, timeless for a young girl to love and use for years to come. You have a wonderful eye for combinations. Thank you for sharing your enjoyable photos.

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:11 pm

      Thank you so much Alison!

  6. Cynthia @ wabi sabi quilts May 5, 2022 / 4:17 pm

    Wow, your baskets are beautiful. I like your change in the handles. The fabrics are so unusual and lush, so pretty. What a nice project to work on for Ursula’s future. I liked that “awe” piece in the NYT. You have a beautiful setting for mindfulness and discovery, for sure!

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:14 pm

      Thanks Cynthia. I love using these contemporary florals and lighter backgrounds- a bit different for me, but it really seems to be connecting me to the spring season.

  7. Carol Lapel May 5, 2022 / 7:17 pm

    Your choice of fabrics for the baskets is stunning!! What a special quilt this is going to be.

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:15 pm

      Thank you Carol!

  8. Angie May 8, 2022 / 12:17 pm

    The basket blocks are gorgeous – what fabulous fabrics! I look forward to watching the quilt progress, especially since you’ll be planning as you go along! The term “awe walk” is a perfect description of my favorite type of walk. It’s harder to do in an urban environment, but I try!

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:18 pm

      Thank you Angie! It’ll be fun to see where this goes. I know you can find some “awe walks” in an urban environment; it just might take a bit more effort.

  9. marissthequilter May 8, 2022 / 4:30 pm

    Ursula is a very lucky girl. Your spring baskets are bright and beautiful. What a happy project!
    The sighting of that otter must have been an awe-inspiring moment.

    • gladiporsche May 8, 2022 / 7:20 pm

      Thank you Mariss! The basket project does indeed feel “happy!” The otter was amazing and I feel so lucky to have witnessed it!

  10. Nann May 10, 2022 / 2:36 pm

    Such a glorious basket assortment! (I’m co-chair of our guild BOM this year and we’re doing baskets so I am on the alert.) And what wonderful discoveries on your walks!

  11. audrey May 11, 2022 / 9:07 pm

    Ooh, your baskets are so pretty! Love them!:)

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