Spring sprung while I was gone!

I don’t know how others manage it, but when I’m on a teaching trip I just don’t seem to be able to post as much as I’d like. Or at all. I did post some photos on Instagram and facebook so if you follow me there, you saw my students hard at work as well as some of their blocks. Let me just say that the Academy of Applique in Williamsburg was a blast! It was a rare treat to be among so many appliquers!

I came home to redbuds in bloom. They look like they smell pretty, but they don’t smell at all as near as I can tell.

I also came home to the news that someone filed a fraudulent tax return using our numbers. Deep sigh. I had gotten a letter from the IRS before I left that made me think that this was happening. I found out today that yes, indeed, our numbers were compromised.

After some searching I found the phone number to call and the nice lady pointed me in the right direction. Steve is on spring break so he ended up taking over, calling the FTC, checking our credit reports, notifying the Social Security Administration and I’m not sure who else. So far everything else is in order (yay!) but it means filing a paper return, with extra forms, and a longer wait for it to be processed. I am thankful that I don’t have plans for our over-payment from last year.

I think that this has become a common enough experience that dealing with it is getting easier. That said, we are lucky to have found out early, before the hackers got any money from the IRS, which is different from the ‘iris’, which was also blooming in my yard today :-).

And lastly, I am going to be giving a trunk show lecture at 11:00 AM Friday morning at the Dallas Quilt Show. I don’t know that I have ever pulled so many quilts out of my closet at one time. There are so many that I won’t be saying much about any individual quilt or we’ll be there all day but I do think it will be a good showing of Piece O’ Cake quilts. If you are interested, I hope you can come!

And there were flowers!

Succulents don’t flower a lot but when they do, the flowers are lovely. Here are a few, seen at the Ruth Bancroft Garden last week:

The yellow flowers on this little barrel cactus were practically translucent…

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Another tall cactus wore what appeared to be a corsage, albeit not one I would want to wear :-).

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There was a lovely stand of poppies, taller than me! I kept thinking of the poppies that put Dorothy, et al, to sleep in the Wizard of Oz…

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These little purple flowers were all over a small hump of what looked a little like grass but was instead pretty spikey. You wouldn’t want to walk on it…

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There were several flower that could have been designed by Dr. Seuss…

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And a personal favorite, the ones that look like spikey fireworks!

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An outing to look at flowers…

Mom’s 82nd birthday was last week! She enjoyed a variety of activities and one was a trip to the Dallas Arboretum. Lorna came up with the idea for this excellent adventure and I’m glad she did. Mom, Lorna, Bear and I set off on  Wednesday morning, a beautiful north Texas spring day.

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Bear was an excellent adventurer. He rode in the stroller and sometimes got to get out and walk…

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The grown-ups looked at the flowers and plants, mostly to get ideas about what we might do in our own yards. Wild roses are so pretty, but I don’t have room…

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I have a lot more shade in my yard now than I used to and the best idea I got was to plant some ferns, purple oxalis, and some other purple-y shade lovers!

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I also have succulents in pots near the pool. I wish I could grow one of these, but there’s just not room…

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Here is my succulent space. No room for a century plant, although these guys should get bigger over the summer.

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Mom loves her plants. She used to love to work in the yard but she can’t do that so much any more. Happily she is only 4 houses down so I can do some digging for her, along with Hector (her yard man and his crew), and Christopher.

I spent most of last Thursday and Friday in my yard, and then mom’s yard. I should have been working on the manuscript for the next (two) book(s), but I didn’t. I felt some guilt but not enough to go inside :-). I was too busy last year with the color book to work in the yard and I promised myself that this year I would get out and deal with the bare spots. The weather was perfect when I planted and we got some rain on Sunday to water the plants in. My yard is making me smile!

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It’s nice now and it’s only going to get better! FYI to those who have not seen pics of my yard before: it’s small and unusual for my neighborhood. Every other house has the typical big yard of grass with bushes at the house. Lucky for us we live in a neighborhood without restrictions. Also, luckily, our neighbors really like our yard.