It's snowing today in my town. The lower par of the province has had huge amounts (for them) of snow this month, but all we've gotten so far was a long spell of cold, nasty weather, which was bad enough. It's not the temperature that's the problem here so much as the winds that lower the temperatures by as much as 10 degrees. Even though it's snowing now, there's very little wind and so the temperature is quite mild.
So I've restocked the bird feeder and put out some fresh apples that the house finches, flickers and blackbirds like. The goldfinches flock to the "sock" filled with nyger seed, and as I type this I an see a downy woodpecker in the tree next door. My parents were enthusiastic amateur birders. I was never interested in them all that much, even though I grew up within a 90-minute drive of Point Pelee National Park - a birders' paradise. We used to go there often - for family drives, to visit friends in nearby Leamington or on school fieldtrips. As my parents would scan the trees for interesting birds, my oldest brother and I would follow along with our eyes glued to the ground, looking for the beautiful native ephemerals and other unique woodland flowers of southern Ontario.
About 11 years ago a few people began a Christmas Bird Count in this area and I went along to see if there was something I could use in the newspaper I worked for. It was fun if one could ignore the frozen fingers and toes one suffered while tramping through the snow hunting the elusive birds. Eventually I bought a copy of Sibleys guide to birds and began feeding them, as my parents had. I assured my indoor cats that it was for their own amusement, but I can't deny that I enjoy watching the birds at my feeders as much as they do.
And so on this last day of 2016, the falling snow is picking up speed and the birds are chattering noisily in the front yard as they elbow their way to the feeders. And I should be at my sewing machine, but instead I am sitting at my computer while providing a comfortable lap for Rusty - a common scenario these days.
My last post reminded me of something I had forgotten because I hadn't posted in months - that my new blog interface was a horrible and clunky thing. It may well have been responsible for my absence from my blog this year, so I'm hoping that I'll get better as I use it more. It looks like I may be buying a new computer in the new year since this one seems to be dying... Which is too bad because I like this computer. It's also such a pain in the neck to switch all of your files to another computer, and I can't afford a new computer that's as good as this one, but it's been a good computer for nine years and it doesn't owe me anything. And perhaps a new computer will offer a better interface for blogging.
So, although I haven't finished anything in two or three weeks, I have finished quite a few wallets and bags over the summer. I've made several more of these little wallets, using my experience with the pattern to fussy cut the fabric in some cases - it's a really nice, attractive, simple little compact wallet that I enjoy making.
I've also wanted to make this little Japanese knot bag for some time now, and once I got started, I couldn't stop. I just love the rounded bottoms that provide so much more space in a bag. There's more to making the handles that these instructions describe, so if you find yourself stumped, just drop me a line and I'll try and help you. These bags are very comfortable to carry and are great for holding a wallet, pair of glasses, keys and other small items, and they look really sharp!
That's all that I have for today. It's time to start the macaroni and cheese casserole for supper - an old family recipe that's a big favourite for days like today. So, my best wishes to all of you for a happy and healthy 2018! I'll see you next year.
Until next time,