It's time for brunch in the backyard! Here are 4 of the 6 deer munching and grazing around my backyard this fine Saturday morning. I had a good picture set for you, and just as I was ready to point and shoot something happened in the other direction. Heads turned and legs leaped and they were moving on. I'm glad they can find a little sheltered space to wander around during these cold months. But come spring, I will be cursing them for chomping on my tender green shoots in the flower beds. One thing I find amusing in my attempts to keep the deer at bay is the variety of products that claim to do this job for you. Last spring I gave in and bought a little gizmo at the hardware store that I thought would be the answer to my problems. It's a little black box with a small flashing red light that is supposed to deter the deer. Well, I am sorry to say that it doesn't work. In fact, I think it serves as a beacon to draw them in! It runs on solar power, so even during the winter it is out there with a little red blinking light visible at night. Really, their path passes within 3 feet of the light! Chalk up another attempt to outsmart Mother Nature!
Now here is something that really is smart--
Yesterday I spent most of the day at the White Bear Lake Armory building, just a block from Bear Patch, for our "I Can Sleep In My Own Bed" Retreat. Many retreats are available to quilters, and usually involve a whole weekend away at another location. As an alternative for those who prefer the comfort of their own home and bed, we organized this day retreat sponsored by the store. Debbie asked me to put together a project for the group, and I came up with directions for a mystery block. This is a take-off on the mystery quilt concept, which requires that participants proceed step-by-step in blind faith that they will end up with an entire quilt. I broke that down to a smaller scale project. I made some adaptations to a block I had seen, broke it down into 6 steps, and had fabric kits prepared for assorted color combinations. Here are some of them:
Everyone received the fabric and step one of the directions, then each hour I handed out another step of the directions and showed a sample of what to do. Step #6 was the big reveal! In addition, I had printed up several ideas for alternative fabric placement and quilt layouts, in case someone wanted to use the sample block as inspiration for an entire quilt. I think the quilters had a good time with it. I know I did!
Enjoy your weekend! Bob is somewhere south of here swinging a golf club, and I am going to go out and decide if I should try to fire up the tractor snowblower to clear the 6" of new snow on the driveway, or just wait until it all melts! I am leaning towards the latter, since I have keys to the pickup and have discovered that the 4 wheel drive makes getting up the little hill in the driveway so much easier than when I am in my car!