Friday, April 17, 2020


A thoughtful kitten has a lot to ponder these days. For example, the other day I opened the sliding glass door leading to the backyard so Molly could enjoy the sights and sounds from behind the screen door. However, I didn't notice that the screen door was also open. Molly sat politely on the back step wondering which was worse, my mental lapse or taking advantage of a mental lapse. Happily, I scooped her up and brought her inside before she could decide. As a compromise, she spent the rest of the afternoon at the front door demanding to be let outside. (She is an indoor only cat...)

Also, we are all trying to ignore the elephant in the room who blocks out the sun. And we mean this literally.

And while we honor Buddy and his choice to identify as a cat now, we really can't ignore his earlier life choice as a pony.  (P.S. Molly is a normal cat size.)

And yes, I have made a pattern for a downey woodpecker block. However, an earlier attempt at a paper-pieced version ended up all twisted around. Plus...

Her attention span shrunk to the size of a gnat.
Then a breeze blew it away and that was that.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Pileated Postage and Mug

Let's all take a moment and feel sorry for this pathetic pileated woodpecker with the broken beak. Apparently, he tried to put a hole in a very hard head instead of a tree.

At least he can drink away his sorrows using his new pileated woodpecker mug.

Meanwhile, Molly tried to teach me about 100 new words today. Molly is a dedicated kitten and is trying very hard to fulfill her responsibilities to homeschool me now that I am under the "Stay home, Stay safe" edict. She is also trying to keep the house sanitized my subduing Mr. Cooties, aka Buddy.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Woodpecker Hexies

Here is my set of hexies for woodpeckers. As you can see, I couldn't find a lot of fabrics featuring woodpeckers. As Cathy at Crazy by Design would say, the woodpeckers are good for the Knock, Knock part, but you need an owl for the actual joke. And that's why there is more fabric featuring owls than woodpeckers.

Of course, jokes reminds me of the staff meeting we had today. Molly presented hours of graphs showing that the "new fabric" epidemic was swamping the "start a new quilt" epidemic. She illustrated her point by biting Buddy's tail, and he countered by nipping at her ears. So not knowing what day it is might be the least of my problems.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Pileated Print

Here is a pileated print. I made it quite a while ago, so today's effort was finding it.

Also, I realized that my initial assumptions about the pandemic exponential quilt start challenge (PEQSC) were faulty when I assumed that the exponential increase was DAILY. For a pandemic, a doubling every four days suggests unconstrained growth, and here in Oregon we are happy to see the growth slow to doubling roughly every six days (with all the requisite caveats that these numbers are based on minimal testing etc., etc., etc.)

But in terms of PEQSC, I have decided to double the starts every week instead of daily. It's still ridiculous and unmanageable, but at least I don't have to admit defeat immediately.

Monday, April 6, 2020

Two starts for day two

This is the quilt start from day 1, the zipper quilt.

For the second day of the pandemic exponential start challenge, I started two quilts. This is a postage stamp quilt using solids.

And these are blocks for a hummingbird quilt.

And for the woodpecker "put a bird on it challenge" I was very brave and put the woodpecker hexie on a ornery kitten.

I tried to put the woodpecker hexie on Buddy but he wasn't having it.

Sunday, April 5, 2020

To Do: Woodpecker

I did spend time out in the garden today enjoying lots of sunshine. Inside, Molly enjoyed sunshine in the chair next to the window. This chair used to be mine until Buddy stole it from me. I think Molly's heated bed was too warm, so she moved to a second choice location. Buddy was quite upset and tried to settle in the chair right on top of her. So I laid out a soft blanket in a sunny location and gave her a spa treatment. So of course Buddy now wanted to be there and tried to lay on top of her again. When she wouldn't budge he tried to bite her foot.  So that was my day "staying safe, but not quite sane" was yours?

With so much drama, I thought I should work out a to do list and put it on my bulletin board.

And here is the first block to my first quilt of the pandemic quilt challenge (PQC), where challengers try to start quilts at an exponential pace. As you would expect, some of the rules are uncertain. For example, is one block enough to signal beginning a quilt. Molly says that that someone could just be working on a sampler quilt, making more progress as they go along. I suggested that just thinking of a new quilt might count...those are like asymptomatic quilts that go undetected.

However, whatever the rules, the new quilt is called Zip or the zipper quilt and was first presented by Klein Meisje Quilts...where Lynn is making a series of quilts combining prints and solids. Wanda at Exuberant Color has also been making her versions of these quilts. I had put off starting a solid/print quilt of my own because I have my solids packed away and did not want to release them into the sewing room (given all the bird feathers and cats). So instead of a solid, I am using an "almost solid" called Spotted by Zen Chic.

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Pileated Scraps

Today's pileated woodpecker is formed from scraps that were hanging out on the floor by the design wall. These are mostly bits used for the hummingbird. They are also used by Buddy who likes piles of scraps to attack and slide into when he's playing laser mouse. He likes to play right after his first breakfast and then end with a second breakfast. So I wasn't that surprised to find that he had dropped his laser pointer toy in his food dish and left it there.

And here's Buddy trying to figure out what I'm up to. He saw me taking a photo and realized I was probably in need of a big-headed object.

On the quilting front, I should mention that I am joining Gayle at Mangofeet's pandemic quilt challenge. For this challenge, one starts a new quilt, and then another, and then a few more so that the new starts reach exponential growth. I have just begun the challenge so the new piles are barely detectable to the kitten scientist who would stamp out such nonsense with intense lap sitting and playtime.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Pileated Sock Drawer

Yes, just a typical Friday night spent in isolation organizing the sock drawer. Molly kept digging into the drawer, sending the socks flying. I don't know if she was protesting the use of a stuffed bird as a design element, or she was investigating the pileated woodpecker noise that the toy emits when squeezed. Buddy demonstrated his composure and bravery by running out of the room.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Perler Pileated

Here is a pileated woodpecker made from perler beads. Please ignore how it turns up in the right hand corner. When Buddy said it looked good enough to eat, he meant it literally and seriously.

Helpful or Not Helpful?

A while back I had these mugs made from a design I drew in Illustrator. I reordered a couple of these this morning because I didn't keep any, and I thought I could use them to fill in one of the days of April. However, because things are taking longer than usual I won't actually receive them until May sometime.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Sheep and Lego Woodpecker

Finally, I wrangled all the sheep together and now Molly informs me I have to cut them apart to ensure social distancing. Yeah sure, if she believed in social distancing she would get off me.

The next step for the sheep is to make a border of sheep ears. As you might imagine, this will require me to make a lot more sheep, and then I will shear off the ears to make the border. I hope I think of an easier way to do that.

And I may have had a falling out with hummingbirds...but this is the beginning of a new month. And the bird for April is the woodpecker. Recently there were two downey woodpeckers playing in my backyard. And I certainly miss the pileated woodpeckers that hung out in the woods around my house in Virginia.

So we will start the month of April with a pileated woodpecker built from Legos. And if you want to go down a rabbit hole filled with birds, I would suggest you visit My Owl Barn.