A cool, crisp, bright day today – needed my fleece parka for walking the dog down the lane and he is beginning to spring and bounce through the grass as it gets longer. From the embarrassment of riches that spring is now offering, this morning I’ve chosen quince blossom. Any quince tree is a thing of beauty, with its big furry leaves and delicate pink flowers that start out as a cup, like a magnolia flower, then gradually open and fade. In autumn, the smell of the fruit is heavenly. Apparently in the past people used to keep the fruit in little boxes of sawdust in their linen closets but I have never succeeding in preventing them from going mouldy. Instead, I process all of my modest crop and freeze it up for a taste of summer in winter. Today’s threads are pale blue cotton perlé no 5, variegated pink Anchor six-strand cotton, sewn in two and three strands, white rayon floss, lilac six-strand cotton, sewn in two strands, cream six-strand cotton, sewn in two strands and two shades of green six-strand cotton, sewn with one strand of each. The stitches are Portuguese knotted stem stitch for the heart, stem stitch for the stem, fly stitch with outline for the leaf, long-and-short for the petals, and straight stitch, French knots and detached chain for the stamens.