10/18/13

For the Birds

There have been a few things going on besides messing with the bird camera the past few days. For those of you who can't stand to see another bird picture, I thought I'd start with my quilting endeavors today. Yesterday I got started quilting the White Trees quilt...which has birds...thus, the title of my post. (Always thinking, even when it isn't obvious.)

I'm working on the blocks right now, which I'll show you in a minute. I'm thinking of quilting bird tracks into the narrow red border. Do you have trouble deciding what to do with the borders too? I can usually come up with something for the blocks, but the borders always leave me a bit bamboozled. I'm considering doing some snowflakes in the gray and white borders, but the red border...hm, I don't know....


Let me see if I can show you what I have in mind. I did some turkey tracks in a doll quilt last year that I modeled after the turkey tracks my long arm quilter, Erin Davis, did in this November block for Home is Where the Heart Is. You can see them in the sky. 


I'm thinking a sort of meandering row of bird tracks in that red border might be cute. And as I look at this block, I sort of like what she did in the brown border too. Maybe I'll do something like that. Hard to decide.

But to get on with what I did yesterday, I began by quilting snowflakes into the white areas between the trees.


And I quilted snow gathering in the branches.


It was kind of hard to keep my quilting organized since the blocks are off set from one another. I realized that I was going to have to go above and below and to the side of my blocks, rather than doing one block at a time, as I usually do.


I decided to quilt the trunk markings of birch trees into the trees, 


but I want to add a few more vertical lines to these as well. 


Eventually, I organized myself by outlining the trees while quilting the bark first, then quilting the snowflakes and the snow.

I was having trouble with this foot hooking the thread when I changed direction,


and so I switched it out for a closed foot. It helped some, but I'm having some tension problems.


I quit after doing these two blocks, so, ten to go.


And here's how it looks from the back, although that white thread on white fabric is a little hard to see.


So...now to the bird cam. As a few of you pointed out after yesterday's post, there could be some very stealth birds eating the peanuts. I think possibly they're using a Romulan cloaking device like those dastardly Romulans from Star Trek. On the other hand, there is this:


See that shadow on the ground in the image above? There is a bird sitting on the perch above the feeder, out of view of the lens. The camera detects the motion, but the bird is evading the camera.

Now look below, and you can see him getting ready to steal a peanut.


And here's a really great shot of him. (Running my facial recognition software now.)


Here's another scrub jay doing a rather stylized pose, I would say.


In this next image, the peanuts are nearly gone, but hm. Who is that marauding character?


I didn't check the pictures yesterday, but this morning, I left early to go have breakfast with my friend, Sue. We aren't walking these days because of my knee, so we've settled on having breakfast together for now. Before I left, I went out and switched the feeders again, reasoning that nobody was going to show up for an empty peanut feeder. So, with the camera trained on the suet feeder, look who showed up! 


Dang! It's the Flicker, but I had the camera aimed too low. Shoot. There was another image of him as well, but this one was better.

Today I'm going to physical therapy, and I'll go past the feed store and pick up some more suet cakes. I'm thinking I'm zeroing in on my most photographic prey for the time being, but this is my last suet cake. More bird pictures to follow.

As for physical therapy, I'm happy to report that I think my knee is ever so slightly improved. And with that, I've gotta run. Hope you're enjoying your Friday and that your weekend is wonderful.

30 comments from clever and witty friends:

gpc said...

Ever so slightly better is a LOT better than worse! :) I can't help by commenting on quilting decisions -- all I've ever done is ditch quilting so I think you are just showing off. But the quilts are lovely. And your birding skills are improving by leaps and bounds!

WoolenSails said...

I love your projects and the quilting you are doing, that is a gorgeous piece. Love the new bird photos, so wonderful to catch the jays. I think I should have gone to therapy this week, I am still sore, lol.

Debbie

Lynda Halliger Otvos (Lynda M O) said...

Busy lady you are indeed. Isn't going out to brekkies the best girlfriend date ever ?~! I love to eat pancakes with my gal-pals. Your quilt with the birch trees is uber pretty and whatever quilting you do will add exponentially to its gorgeousness.

Meredith Lewis said...

I wanted to tell you how much I enjoy your blog and now with the bird cam I can't wait to see what you're going to post next about the visitors. Your quilting is outstanding and very inspiring.

Meredith Lewis said...

I wanted to tell you how much I enjoy your blog and now with the bird cam I can't wait to see what you're going to post next about the visitors. Your quilting is outstanding and very inspiring.

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

I love all the quilting choices you made. You quilt is gorgeous. Love bird photos as well :)

Kate said...

The quilting looks great. I think either the bird feet or the loopy quilting would work in that red border.

Love the bird photos. Like any camera it seems you have to take a lot of shots to have a few good ones.

Junebug613 said...

Wow, you quilt every bit, don't you? I have only quilted two quilts myself, but never even thought to quilt the narrow border! The blocks are looking great so far! Love the birdies! Glad your knee is feeling improved!

Lee said...

You're going to have to take out stock in peanuts and suet cakes! Me, I'd shoot the jays - with anything but a camera, lol. I will admit, the Steller Jay is very pretty, but jays are just plain rotten little thieves - they'll raid nests and steal eggs and young birds, and they're noisy. Jays, crows, pigeons, scavengers of the air! You're getting some nice shots :)

quiltzyx said...

I like your ideas & what you've done on the white trees quilt. Bird tracks would be neat in that border, but is it wide enough?

Looks like you're getting it dialed in on the bird cam! I need fabric in that teal-y blue jay color!!!

Marjorie's Busy Corner said...

Your quilt looks great Barb....my friend marla made that same quilt...I love it! Your quilting is perfect for it. I still say I am going to make that one some day!!!

Teresa in Music City said...

Your Trees quilt is looking great! As usual, I love your ideas for quilting it - they are spot on!!! :*) One suggestion I would make is that I noticed you are not using a "straight stitch" plate for quilting. I'm not sure why it is, but it really does help to eliminate some of the problems on the back when you use that plate instead of the zig zag plate. Also, have you used the Magic Bobbin washers? They've worked wonderfully in my machine!

Loving the bird pics - that Jay is stunning!

Cathy (aka CrafteeCC) said...

LOL am loving reading your posts - love the reference to the Romulan cloaking device ;-)

crazy quilter said...

Just wanted to tell you I truly enjoy reading your blog. Your musings are quite entertaining and your quilting skills are stellar. Like the bird photos too and can't wait to see what a flicker bird is as we do not have those in Texas and I cannot say I have ever even heard of one, so I wait with anticipation on what that character looks like. Your blue jays are better than ours too but I agree they are
Noisy thieves an dive bomb the cats around here for sport. If I had something to shoot them with I would along with the darn squirrels , as they are pests to me. Glad your knee is better , keep on quilting!

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I like the idea of the bird tracks in the red border. This is coming along so nicely. Your Jays are different from our coast Jays, which I find interesting. And the the photo of Smitty- HA - he smiled for the camera. Glad the knee is improving.

Tami C said...

So glad to hear that your knee is feeling a little better! Maybe that physical therapy is doing you some good after all. I'm enjoying your bird pictures. Thanks for sharing!

Kirsty said...

You have such amazing wildlife, that camera is a stroke of genius. Love the jays. Looking forward to seeing more. Pleased to hear Miss Gracie survived her trip to the murder house (dentist) and to see Mr Smitty keeping an eye on things. How fast did those peanuts go! Extraordinary.

Esther F. said...

Wonderful post! Love those birdshots!
Gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous,
Esther
esthersipatchandquilt at yahoo dot com
ipatchandquilt dot wordpress dot com

Dana Gaffney said...

Scrub Jay is such a plain name for such a pretty bird, I think he should be "beautiful many colors of blue jay". It could be one of those One World things, and all of the jays lived happily ever after as a united family :)
Bird tracks sounds good.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

Glad you are starting to see some improvement in your knee. But I think you may go broke if those birds keep eating peanuts at that rate!! I can't believe how quickly they empty the feeder.

LethargicLass said...

that bird camera is amazing!! I never knew birds ate peanuts, and such gorgeous birds at that!

Are you doing different exercises with this PT? Just glad it is helping, but curious why now...

I like the idea of the bird feet in the red border... very fun :)

LynCC said...

OK. That's it. Yes, now I want a BirdCam, too! ;D

I love this quilt. I've got the book so I can make it some day - probably this February in rebellion of winter and massive UFO/NETY overdose. I really love how you're quilting the trees. The snowflakes are terrific, too. It's going to be pretty when you're finished. Hope that tension issue works out soon for you!

LynCC said...

OK. That's it. Yes, now I want a BirdCam, too! ;D

I love this quilt. I've got the book so I can make it some day - probably this February in rebellion of winter and massive UFO/NETY overdose. I really love how you're quilting the trees. The snowflakes are terrific, too. It's going to be pretty when you're finished. Hope that tension issue works out soon for you!

Jacque said...

I bet you told about it in a previous post, but I'm clueless...what are you using on the bed of your machine? Does it help the quilt slide?

Dar said...

Your quilting choices so far are right on! I think you do a marvelous job of deciding what to quilt where. Love your bird cam. I'm getting more and more hooked on it! lol

knitnkwilt said...

I love the shot of the jay with peanut in beak! I think bird tracks in the red border would be perfect, and I like what you have done so far.

Brown Family said...

I like what you are doing with the White Trees. I sometimes have a problem with that foot snagging on thread, too!

Lyndsey said...

The quilting is looking great, like the snow, a good idea. Getting the tension right is such a pain. Since my machine was serviced none of my old tension settings work so I having to get used to it all over again. Still loving the bird pictures (or lack of them). The picture with the birds shadow in are fun.

Michele said...

I like what you've done so far with the quilting. And I was just thinking...you're going to go through a lot of peanuts. Better stock up.

Joanie's Trendy Quilts said...

Just love your tree quilt with the red cardinal! Quilting is awesome too! I have stopped by a time and too and have enjoyed seeing the snapshots from the Bird Cam. Funny creatures!