I realized after my first bird was done that I mistakenly placed its tail over a stem. I'm not sure I want to rip it out and do it over.
This is the point in these hand applique blocks where I get most frustrated. I've put in hours of work, sewing down these tiny legs and stems, but not enough is finished for the block to really come together yet. I try to trust the design and the process, and I just keep working and it all ends up balanced.
I'm liking my decision to make the birds into cardinals. It required a few changes to the pattern. I added a crest to the birds' heads, and I drew a black "mask" for each face. I found some Christmas fabric with pears on it that make truly excellent beaks for my cardinals. The pears are just the right scale.