Saturday, January 19, 2013

Hummingbird Quilt Block


This 12" Hummingbird block is the 18th block of my Starwood Sampler Quilt, made to tell the story of my home and community.  I made it as a block of the month with my quilting group, the Persian Pickles.  We found the pattern for this block at:  This block has several names - Rosebud, Maple Leaf, Bright Star, and Crow's Foot as well as Hummingbird.

In this quilt, half of my blocks are set straight, and half are set on point.  This block is set on point, using the blue fabric for the sashing.  

I continue with the amusing story my son Sean wrote about living so close to nature:
Close Encounters of the Wild Kind continued

My mom heard the commotion and sprang into action, lifting about ten encyclopedias (you have heard how adrenaline works in times like this) and placed them on top of the lid, assuring me that even if the animal was a small mountain lion it would not escape.  For what seemed like hours, although it was probably only a minute, we stood at the bathroom door in horrified, agonizing silence, holding our collective breath.

When the clamor had ceased (actually quite a bit later.  We avoided all action for so long that we were sure that the corpse would soon begin to smell), and after a lengthy silence, the father figure was brought in to perform the extraction.

Giant prongs in hand, he slowly, and quite bravely, opened the lid.  A mouse, we had thought.  Or a chipmunk, maybe.  “Oh my goodness!  It’s a rat!” he yelled, his face contorted with horror.  Actually, it was an Abert’s squirrel, and it had climbed into an opening in the roof (don’t ask me why we needed an opening in the roof that leads to the toilet) that has since been sealed.  It died an awful death, death by toilet.  It shattered my innocence.  I will never sit down with any security again.

You might say that living next to the national forest is a constant clash with nature.  We have had raccoons eat the cat food, a bear snap the deck railing, a pet cat eaten (this is purely circumstantial, and I contend it was by a mountain lion), and a Common Flicker (commonly known as Annoying Wood Pecker) who delighted in searching for worms in the absolute break of day and in the paneling of the house nearest to any heads resting on pillows.

But it isn’t all bad; most of the beauty of nature we enjoy: The wild turkey that struts by tauntingly on Thanksgiving Day, the mother duck and her ducklings that cross the road as stopped cars look on, the beaver and blue heron that make occasional appearances at the pond where the ducks live, the bossy orange hummingbird who, every year, rules the plastic roost of the hummingbird feeder, the chipmunks who scurry around collecting acorns – that is, until the aforementioned feline depleted their population.

Oh, the wonders of living as one with nature.  How we could get along without our friendly fauna I do not know.  Which may account for my sleepless first night of college last fall.  I listened to the rhythmic guttural snoring of my new roommate (a sound somewhat on par with, say, the pounding of the Common Flicker) and sighed, wide-awake.

It was then that I turned and looked out my window to see a little varmint snuffling through the garbage can.  Later, I was told that it was a possum, that it was ugly, disgusting, and not to be trusted.  But when I saw it that night, ten feet from where I slept, I didn’t care.  I feel into a deep sleep.
It felt like home.

Click here to read the first part of this story:


  1. Your blocks are great but I love love love your son's story!

  2. Oh, poor thing! I was usually the one who rescued the critters and sent them back to the wild!

  3. Whew! LOL! Glad all was/is well!

    We are 16 miles outside of Atlanta, GA and we have all that wildlife too. We have even had bears inside the city limits of Atlanta. I can't imagine folks stopping all over the road to look at a deer. We are in fear of them flying through our windshields here on our interstates and killing us. Has happened quite a few times. Many sport a dent or two where a deer has ran into their vehicle. Can't plant flowers and gardens in some neighborhoods like my mom's and brothers because the deer will eat it. LOL! It is great to live with and around the wild life and you do miss it when it's not there. We have 5 owls around here too..they get real frisky about 2a.m. and upset my dog.


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