March 20, 2016

Down at the Pond

When we planned to move back to our home State of Queensland five years ago, we knew we would be happy, but never dreamed of how perfect our location would be for us in our retired lifestyle. Everything we need and love is at our fingertips - 200 metres walk to great medical services, shops nearby, the beach a short walk away, parks and conservation areas in abundance, 150 species of birds to be seen and enjoyed. We are thankful everyday for the blessings of living in such a delightful location.

Some of our favourite delights are our Ponds just two houses down the road. Our morning stroll around the water rarely fails to bring us pleasure - a Rakali darting under the bridge to its burrow, a Moorhen keeping a close eye on her four chicks, an Egret showing off its beautiful breeding plumage, a Darter drying its wings. 

You can see how easy it was for me to be inspired to make my "Down at the Pond" quilt.

There's always beautiful butterflies flitting by:

and their cousins, the dragonflies:

Some days the frogs are quite noisy: 

At the moment there are only a few ducks on the ponds as the lotus leaves are so huge they have covered nearly all the water. Once the cooler weather comes, the leaves will die back and all our ducks, grebes, cormorants, moorhens, and swamp hens will be back.

We don't often see fish and turtles, but there are tell-tale signs of their presence.

This quilt was another collaborative effort with my artist grandson who did all the drawings for me.

The waterlilies are stunning, mostly purple, white and yellow.

We always stop to lean on the bridge and have another look.

It wouldn't be a pond without bulrushes. I had fun stitching these. I didn't want to leave them just with an outline, but filling them in with satin stitch didn't turn me on. I had a brainwave to work rows of stem stitch until they were covered and I just love the effect. I did the same on the leaves. It's now my "Go-To" technique for filling in stitching areas.

Country Threads magazine has featured the design in Volume 17 No 5.

and it has pride of place on the cover:

 Still no sewing machine (sigh ...). I had hoped I would have it back before Easter! Maybe ........    We have a big milestone to celebrate soon, so I have spent time putting together a photo presentation with some digital scrapbooking. Next I'll work on a pretty invitation for the party we have planned. I prepared another hand-stitching project, and have been spending more time on my volunteer work, so I guess time without Bernina hasn't all been wasted.

Happy stitching!


Nanna Chel said...

Goodness it is taking a long time to get your sewing machine back, Val! Obviously you have lots of inspiration so close by. What a lovely place to live.

simplestitches said...

looks like a beautiful place where you live..lots of inspiration!

michele said...

très jolie courtepointe, j'aime beaucoup ce que vous faites
endroit différent de chez moi (france)

annmarie said...

Lovely post. Lovely quilt. Thanks for sharing.

Barb said...

Gorgeous quilt Val!

Anonymous said...

Oh, you're a cover girl again! I love that quilt. The frog is one of my favorites and in that fabric you used, he's just too cute for words! Your home area looks splendid. You are truly fortunate.

I was just thinking this morning that I want to find a house that is a mile or less from a good grocery, a library, a drug store, and my church. I can get some walking done going everywhere! Oh, and sunshine ... lots and lots of sunshine!