Saturday, November 22, 2014

Deer Alert & A Few Thanksgiving Funnies

 Derby is all excited because there is a deer close by ... run Derby run!
 This is the first time I've seen a 'rack' going through
our yard ... another nice 'good bye' from Mother Nature.

 They can't get out the door fast enough when deer
come for a visit ... at least the barking drives them into
our neighbors yard.
... A Few Thanksgiving Funnies ...

Friday, November 21, 2014

Pre-Thanksgiving Groomed Westies!

 The westies had their pre-Thanksgiving grooming appointment
with Ms. Paulette.  They greeted me with these cute little
bandannas around their neck and then made a direct beeline 
to the exit door.  I think they had enough of a good thing.
 It was an exhausting time for Derby.
 Red headed woodpecker looking for food
in the bark of our locus tree.
 Putting the final touches on Christmas decorations.
 I'm actually calling this my 'grace time period' ... meaning the time
between negotiating with the 'potential' buyers and not
packing a single box until everyone signs on the 
.... dotted line.... this is very nerve racking!

I've been sewing my fingers to the bones trying
to get all the self-imposed fun holiday sewing projects
[I committed to] prior to knowing someone would
expect us to move out by January 30.  After all parties
are in agreement I will take packing serious...
until then I will do my projects and continue to
look at rental houses 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Oyster Man Appears!

 It's freezing cold here just like many parts of the United States.
That doesn't stop Derby and Julep from barking at the oyster
man working the creek harvesting oysters.

Ecosystem Roles

Oysters are filter feeders, consuming phytoplankton (free-swimming algae) and improving water quality while they filter their food from the water. As generations of oysters settle on top of each other and grow, they form reefs that provide structured habitat for many fish species and crabs. The Chesapeake Bay was once known for its abundance of oysters. Much of their recent decline was due to decades of overharvest and habitat destruction. More recently, two parasitic diseases, MSX and Dermo, have devastated the remaining oyster populations in most areas of the Bay and its tributaries.
It has been estimated that oysters were once able to filter all the water in the Bay in about a week. The sharp decrease in the number of oysters means that it now takes the current oyster population about a year to filter the same amount of water. Because the oyster serves such an important function as a filter feeder, it has been hypothesized that their decrease has contributed to an apparent shift in the food web in the Bay, and an increase in zooplankton (which also eat phytoplankton) and their predators (ctenophores and jellyfish).
Two recent field studies in the Chesapeake Bay, one involving restored oysters and the other involving a small, naturally occurring bivalve, demonstrated the potential for filter feeders to improve water quality. A study partially funded by NOAA and done by the Maryland Department of Natural Resourcesrestored a small oyster reef in the South River on Maryland's Western Shore and did intensive water-quality measurements to look for improvements near the oysters. The results showed improvements in both chlorophyll and turbidity levels near the oysters when tidal flow was occurring, as expected, although the improvements were less than those predicted by models.
 Derby doesn't eat oysters ... but he barks at the men who
take our oysters from the creek.

Oyster Reefs
At one time, oysters were so abundant in the Chesapeake Bay that their reefs defined the major river channels. The reefs extended to near the water surface; to stray out of the center channel often posed a navigational hazard to ships sailing up the Bay. Now, after decades of damage to reefs from harvest, increased disease, falling salinity due to the increased runoff that accompanies increased impervious surface, and increased sedimentation from runoff, a significant amount of hard bottom habitat has been lost. The oyster population in the Bay is less than 1% of what it once was.
Degrading water quality is both a cause and an effect of the oyster decline, because fewer oysters means less filtration capacity. But oysters, as hardy as they are, can be killed by prolonged periods of low dissolved oxygen at the Bay's bottom.   
Keep warm and be safe.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sunday Sewing

 Derby nice and comfy laying by the tree.
He looks so cute I can't stand it!
 A set of standard size pillowcases made for my friend
Laura.  When I asked her if she liked this fabric for
pillowcases she said ... oh yeah!
 The regal Sir Derby Wyatt
 Here is the competed tree skirt I made for Laura.
She picked the bird fabric which is very holiday festive. 
Tree skirt back. 

 I also had enough fabric to make a table runner all due to 
the fact I ordered more fabric than needed.

 Starting the second round of Frozen quilts.
This is one of five with two simple borders around the panel.
While I was busy Derby relaxed.
Julep spent most of the day watching squirrels 
run around the yard collecting nuts.  
The week ahead will be a busy one
around here ... so thanks for stopping in
and have a great week ahead.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

It's Cold Out

 The westies are due for a grooming this week prior to
Thanksgiving.  I'm thinking of leaving their coat a little
longer than normal.  Either way they will not be happy
on Thursday when I drop them off for their spa day.
 There are some mornings ... around 3:30-4:00a.m. when
the dogs jump off the bed and start barking like crazy.
It's the deer's feeding time on our hydrangea bushes!

Have a great day and thanks for stopping in.  
Sunday I plan to get a few sewing projects out of the way
so I'll see you then.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Sharing the Work of Others: Bayside Quilters November Meeting

 The completed letter blocks are starting to come in.
They will be made into quilts for a local school.
 ... Guild Members 'Show & Tell' ...

 George {far right} is the token male member of the Guild.
His quilt and pattern will be featured in the spring issue
of McCall's Quilting magazine.  Impressive!

Hope you enjoyed seeing the talents of the Bayside
Quilters Guild November meeting.
Thanks for popping in, Katie