Wednesday, May 31, 2017

North Idaho, Late Spring

The pine tree pollen is real

and it's coating everything

even dotting the budding iris (that would make for a strange hybrid!)

So I keep plenty of these nearby.

:: Sigh ::

Friday, May 26, 2017

Welcome Baby Button

Getting born is hard work!

Melody, Singing

My heart gets all squishy looking at our new granddaughter.

Baby Meets Grandpa Dale

Melody Grace Otto
Born May 25, 2017
3:01 pm
21 inches tall
7 lbs 3 oz

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Lilac Time

When lilacs bloom beneath the pines, it's one of my very favorite times of the year. I'll let the images speak for themselves.


[click for larger image]


Monday, May 22, 2017

Studio Morning

I spent most of this weekend in my Studio, working on my sewing project. The garment construction is going well. The fitting was better than expected. However, my tailoring skills are still growing. It's astonishing how much brain energy it takes to combine the creative process with engineering the angles and curves.

When I approached the Studio door this morning, my old Singer was waiting for me, eager to begin again.

[click for larger image]

My hat is off to all those contestants on Project Runway. It's not easy for me to create a garment in a week. How much more difficult to design and create a garment in a single day - only to do it day after day after day in a competition!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Dispatches from Anxious Davazes

The whole family still waits with love and (our best attempt at) patience as Baby Otto takes her time
being born. This evening, Dale, Jodie and I wrote a few words of encouragement toward our new family member:

Waiting for Button
Baby Julie
Our Julie is anxious
Hold on. She'll come soon.
~Margaret Davaz

Head down, little one.
A world awaits, impatient.
Choose your own best time.
~Dale Davaz

Beautiful, bitty baby Button,
Belligerently battles beneath brazen belly.
Birth, bumpkin! Before belabored blubbering!
Baited breathing, buzzing, buildup ...
Behold: bouquets, bonnets, beautiful babbles.
~Jodie Davaz

We are so ready to love on this child.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Sewing Progress

The basic shape of the dress is put together. I even managed to install an invisible zipper (for only the 2nd time in my life). The fabric is much more dreamy to work with than I was anticipating. The pattern drafting seems to be working so far.

Now all I need is a model to come for a fitting.

Friday, May 19, 2017

On the Cutting Table

I'm back in my Studio, working on a new sewing project. I finished drafting the pattern today.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Tall and Thin

Most of the time, tulips are grown in clusters. They look gorgeous in grand pops of reds, oranges, purples, and yellows. But somehow, this one bulb grew alone in a bed far from other plants at the base of our deck.

Was it lonely, so was crying? Or did I just happen to catch it right after the rain?

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Orange Tulips

We didn't get many tulips in our yard this year. Those that grew had to survive lots of rain, some hail, and wind. I like looking out the kitchen window and seeing these two set off by the white and yellow flowers in the background. They're a little battered, but still a pretty sign of Spring.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Mothers and Daughters

I spent the day with this special woman. Daughter Julie received a much needed massage as she gets ready for Baby Button's birth. It's very likely to happen this week!

Her shirt says it all. "Build a Better World." Julie and Jeff are doing their part.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Down By the Riverside

Look what's bloomin' in the Spokane River!

The way it swirls in the current is mesmerizing.

Sunday, May 14, 2017


Last week, I spent a late afternoon tending to the Garden of Hope. This year, I planted it with violas. Rather than mixed colors, like last year, I planted the entire garden in this variegated purple and white with bright yellow centers.

I bought an entire flat, and went to town planting the flowers relatively close together.

I had some left, which I planted around the rose bush on the other side of the driveway. The three violas that survived the winter were transplanted into this little patch, too.

When that was done, I still had some plants left over, to I lined the other side of the walkway up to our front door.

[click for larger image]

Now I smile a little every time I walk up to our home.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

My Piece of Cake

I've been poking along on this piece while watching TV. I finished it this afternoon. Instead of buttons as shown on the pattern, I found these three little heart beads that I staggered over the roses. This one is ready for a bath and some blocking before framing.

I'm enjoying stitching these little pieces lately. I do need to make some time to do the finishing work on them. But first, I have my mother-of-the-bride dress to finish altering (it's half done), and then the bride's alternate dress to create.

Oh. And a baby quilt. No word yet on when our little Button will arrive. Due date was yesterday!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Spring Sing

I've driven past the Cougar Bay Preserve for decades now. I thought it was time to stop and at least find out where to park so I can come back and explore.

This pretty bird was singing in the wetlands near the parking lot.

There are some geocaches to find in the area. That's a good excuse to return.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

My Happy Place

Kiwanis Park along the Spokane River, Post Falls, Idaho

[click for larger image]

Monday, May 8, 2017

River Meditation

The Spokane River is running quite fast right now. The beach below the small cliff in Kiwanis Park is  currently bare. It was good to walk along the shore on a sunny morning after the long winter, then sit in contemplation.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Including Deer Carcasses

It was a beautiful sunny Spring day in north Idaho. I'd spent the weekend with Jodie in central Washington. So when I got home, I did what I always love to do with Dale -- go for a ride in the convertible. Today we drove out into the countryside east of Coeur d'Alene, through Nettleton Gulch.

It's a paved road, that turns into a walker's paradise amid the forest, horse pastures, barns, and running stream. The road then downgrades to gravel, which then becomes a rougher forest service road as it heads up the side of the mountain. We decided to turn around before it was time to go 4-wheeling. At the turn-around point, these signs were posted (note the obligatory gunshot holes).

So very Idaho. I can't decide if my favorite part is the insistence on packing out your own deer carcasses, or the reminder that you must show up in court if cited.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Up, Up and Away!

Mom and Jo's Great Kennewick Hot Air Balloonfest Adventure

Nah. We're the ones full of hot air. We're here to do more wedding prep, including finding my dress. Done!

The hot air balloons? A giant photographic headboard in our hotel room!

Friday, May 5, 2017

Red Against Green

Tulips in my neighbor's front yard. The sunlight gives the petals a translucent quality.


A walk in my neighborhood is an adventure in enjoying gardening skills (that are not apparent in my yard!)

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Pollen Gatherer

Our grape hyacinth attract all kinds of buzzing winged things. While waiting for the bumblebee to show it's face, this creature stood still for a portrait.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Let Them Eat Cake!

I started another small stitching project today. It's called Have Your Cake. The finished piece will be just over 3 inches square. It's stitched on 14 ct aida - which is nice because I don't need magnification to see the holes in the fabric!

Today I stitched the guideline grid and began stitching the top layer of the cake. As you can see, I snip away the guidelines as the stitching approaches them. Even though this is a very small piece, I like having the visual reference so that it's less likely that I'll miscount the stitches.

I like having handwork to do while watching TV in the evenings. Otherwise, I find myself playing a game on my phone incessantly. Ultimately, that's not beneficial for my mental health. If I need to keep my hands busy, I might as well create something lovely.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Blue Switch Day

I found my 307th geocache today and earned this souvenir. I haven't been caching much lately, and seem to get nearly as many DNFs (did not find) as Founds. I was out alone today and tried for two, found one.

As Spring starts to dry up and Summer is on the horizon, I get the itch to cache. We'll see if I can up my Finds this year. I'll be with Jodie next weekend and we hope to make time to snag a few.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Soft Fabric Choices

Julie and I decided on these two fabrics for my granddaughter's quilt. The back will be the solid blue fleece. The sashing on the front will be the blue-flowered white-background flannel. The flannel was in my mom's possession when she died, so we'll be incorporating yet another bit of "Great-Grandma" into the quilt.