A Novel Idea

The perfect “book club” would have no officers, would meet once a month and everybody could read their own choice of books!  And we have it here in Garner at our new library!  Connie sent out about 20 invitations to gals we thought might be avid readers and we met this morning for exactly one hour.  Connie set the timer for 60 minutes and when the timer went off you could leave with no guilt.  Anyone else could stay and chat.  I have so many new books to consider!  Porch – sitting is good for reading, don’t you know?


During every camp, class or lecture Connie and I ever did, we always made time to talk about good books.  I love it when someone recommends a book to me and sometimes I want to step out of my comfort zone and read something different.  I’ll try to add some short lists every now and then and would ask you to do the same.  If you’ve read a good book, tell me!

We finally got a half inch of rain and things will begin to perk up.  I saw that Crazy Mom just started a June sew-along on her blog.  The pattern which is given on her blog is taken from this book.

Here is the quilt appropriately named June.  It’s an easy string quilt and I think I’ll start it this afternoon.


I think her best word of advice is to pick that background fabric first and never use that color in the string sections.

Calling all Colton fans!


And of course, Hazel!

Telly is sick of Hazel!


And who could blame her!

Don’t forget – I have three kittens looking for homes.

66 thoughts on “A Novel Idea

  1. MartyCae

    There is nothing better then sitting in a chair with a good book and a cat or dog. Thanks for the pictures of Colton!

  2. Jan

    I love the book club idea! Colton, Hazel and Telly look happy and in Colton’s case very relaxed. What happened to Mama Kitty and the ginger (now neutered) male?. Are they still around and just keeping a low profile?

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Jan – Mama is still here with three kittens and Buddy, the male I had neutered recently, mud have moved on.

  3. Linda L

    Very cute animals. Our dog is sick of the terrier mix we adopted as well. we try to keep establishing boundaries with him. He’s a little over a year old.

  4. Kathy Hanson

    Book clubs are wonderful – nice that in yours you can pick the book you want!
    Colton is such a dear – looks so happy!
    Hazel is a dear too – can see that Telly could get a bit tired of a puppy!
    Good luck finding homes for your kitties!

  5. Bobby Sut

    I would take one or two of the kittens if I didn’t live so far away in Maryland!! They are precious as is Colton.

  6. Kathy

    Oh gosh that picture of Colton is so adorable! Summer relaxing at its finest! Looking forward to your book recommendations on your blog. It was from you I learned about the book A Man called Ove and bought it to read some day. Can’t wait to see what background you start with for your string piecing.

  7. Carol

    My book recommendation: in a dark, dark wood by ruth ware. I thought it was very suspenseful.

  8. Carol

    I hope you do your quilt with reproduction scraps as I have many of those and would love to see how you would work with those. I am not sure what to use as a background fabric other then tea dyed muslin and that gets boring after a while.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Carol – I’m going to use red/white and blue but IF I were using reproduction fabrics, I’d try to use a gray print.

      1. Mary Says Sew!

        A gray print or solid could work well for the alternate/background squares with red, white and blue.

      2. Fiona at Ice Bear Quilts

        Hi Mary,
        I have this book too, so you have just given me an idea for what I could do with the scraps from my reproduction Gypsy Wife! Thanks!

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Fiona – perfect solution! A reader was hoping I’d use reproduction scraps but I don’t have that many.

  9. Diana

    I just finished The Unfinished Word of Elizabeth D by Nichole Bernier. Very good contemporary novel about 2 friends who didn’t really know each other until one died and left her journals behind for her friend. Makes one think of their own mortality and we never leave things unsaid or undone as we never know when God will call us home.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Diana – sounds like a good read – I’m going to write it down! Thanks!

  10. Diana

    I wanted to tell you about my book club at work. Someone else has picked out the books, not really my type, but I read them anyway. We were to meet monthly, but it keep getting pushed back so we are now about every 8 weeks as some people have not finished. We went from 20 gals to 6 at the last get together. Disappointing that some feel no commitment. Off my soapbox now. Will continue reading what I like in the meantime…

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Diana – this is exactly why we aren’t picking the book for everyone to read. Good luck!

  11. Connie Olson

    Congratulations on the new library!! I just read “Settle for More” by Megyn Kelly and thought it was a great read.

  12. MARSHA RANSOM

    Your cat is adorable! Our sweet black and white kitty used to curl up in the crock planter on our back porch! So cute!

    I’m reading the 17th book of the Elm Creek Quilters series. After acquiring 15 of them via http://www.paperbackswap.com and rummage sales, I had to break down and find the other 5 at online bookstores via http://www.amazon.com I am really enjoying them.

    I recently got the first three of a needlework novel series; I’ll report back on whether I’m enjoying then enough to start collecting them to read.

    I belonged to a library book club for a while but it was too much like giving verbal book reports and some of the women actually brought lengthy notes. A bit too regimented for me, I guess.

  13. Pat Pratt

    Colton is very handsome… Does he know he’s sleeping in the BIRD BATH???
    Loved the book club idea. I’m seriously considering joining one.

  14. Cathy Platzer

    I’ve been hooked on Charles Martin books lately. I just finished a 2book series “The Dead Don’t Dance” & “Maggie”

    1. Sandy

      Have you read “The Mountain Between Us” by Charles Martin? I couldn’t put it down; then finished it and started from the beginning again.

  15. Susan Sundermeyer

    Mary, it’s funny that you mentioned this quilting book, “No Scrap Left Behind.” This book along with yours and Connie’s book, “Sew Charming” were recommended to me in an an Amazon e-mail just yesterday! P.S. If I lived closer I would give a good home to one of your kittens. I lost my 14 yr. old Dachshund this morning. It’s been a sad day for me.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Susan – I’m so sorry for your loss! I can’t imagine you can even think about quilting books right now.

      1. Susan Sundermeyer

        Thank you, Mary. It has been a hard couple of days. Gidget didn’t let me out of her site. I see her everywhere I go in the house.

  16. Fiona at Ice Bear Quilts

    Hi Mary,
    What a great concept for a book club! Love the photos of Colton, he is such an elegant cat!
    Good luck with the June quilt, but if you make it red, white and blue you might have to call it July!

  17. Kathy

    I wished that I lived closer, I would love to join your book club. I will watch for the lists of good books and add to it when I can. BTW Happy Anniversary Mary and Rick.

  18. mary jane

    Mary, I see someone also mentioned A MAN CALLED OVE. BY Fredrik Backman, a Swedish author. He also wrote MY GRANDMOTHER ASKED ME TO TELL YOU SHE’S SORRY and then BRITT-MARIE WAS HERE…read in that order….different but enjoyable. Good porch reading…another A GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW by Towles, one I just got ELEANOR OLIPHANT IS COMPLETELY FINE by Gail Honeyman.. The one, A Man Called Ove was a movie also, wonderful..some sadness and humor..followed the book. Hope you try one of them…mj

    .

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Mary Jane – I’ve read Ove and another one of his books – charming! We talked about this author today at our meeting.

  19. Sue

    I just finished Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford who also wrote Water For Elephants. This one takes place in Seattle during WWII when the Japanese were relocated and the story is being told by a 12 year old Chinese boy. I loved it and also loved Water for Elephants.

    This is fun. I am writing down the books read by others. Good idea, Mary.

    My favorite photos today are Colton in the bird bath. Darling.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Sue – I think Water For Elephants was written by Sarah Gruen, wasn’t it? Or is my memory giving out?

  20. Eydie

    Happy Flag day Mary!!!
    Am I remembering correctly that it’s also your anniversary?
    Hugs,
    Eydie

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Eydie – yes, it’s our 20th anniversary but how would you remember that???

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Peggy – you are very close – it’s July 3 – you know that old saying “almost a firecracker”? I’ve been hearing it all my life.

  21. Carolyn W.

    Telly will one explain to Miss Hazel…enough is enough. When Paddington the Poodle came home Yoda the Chihuahua played for a bit then stood over him as if to say I am older and the boss. Once Paddington wasn’t ready to quit playing and I think Yoda showed him every tooth he had. Yes, little britches quit after that. They both had a nap and all well….until Yoda said “that’s enough”.

  22. Kathy Martingilio

    I really appreciate the readings you offer your “groupies”. I adore learning what your menagerie is up to! Thank you. Keep up the good work! Love to you… Kathy

  23. Sue

    Mary….your memory is great! My reading fine print…. bad. It says that Sara Gruen says…..Mesmerizing and evocative. A tale of conflicted loyalties and timeless devotion. Sara Gruen is the author of Water For Elephants.
    There. Cleared that one up. lol

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Sue – the only reason I noticed is that Water For Elephants is on my Top Ten books of all times!

  24. Gina

    Mary,
    Have you read the book, “A Man Called Ove”? I really enjoyed it. It was different.
    Enjoy!

  25. Lynn

    If someone close to you has tried to commit suicide, you won’t like the book. It will hit too close to home for it to be funny,

  26. Starrla

    I have recently read A Gentleman in Moscow by Amos Towles, The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George, Pachinko by Min Jin Lee and The Kitchen House followed by (a follow up of the same characters) Glory over Everything by Kathleen Grissom. They were all great reads and each different. You might enjoy any of them.

  27. Lillian Whitworth

    Our second dog did that to our older one but very seldom does anymore. Maybe that’s there way of saying I love you.

  28. Margie braaksma

    One of my favorite books is “Watership Down”. It’s told by rabbits living in colonies about their life. Lots of nature involved

    I love Colton and your Hazel.
    Margie B

  29. Becky from IA

    Those cats are just nuts……some of the place they choose to nap! hahahaha!!! Like that quilt….I’m going to add to my list.

  30. Diane

    I thought your anniversary was this week–Oh Happy Day:) I have to echo Margie B. Watership Down is a great book by Richard Adams. He also wrote Traveler which is an interesting book about Robert E. Lee’s horse in the Civil War and it’s written from the point of view of the horse, Traveler. Everyone I’ve ever recommended it to loved it.

    Sooo happy to see Colton. He looks very loving. Sorry I’m coming in later–friend in hospital.

  31. Robin Rauk

    Mary, I need a couple kitties, but they will be outside.. we lost our oldest outside cat this spring, he was 11 years old, so we are down to two , and my youngest needs playmates

  32. Marilyn

    The pictures of Colton are adorable. Thank you for the reminder of Crazy Mom quilt I want to join in with the sew along.

  33. Felicia Hamlin

    Hi Mary, have you read ” What Alice forgot”? Very interesting! Colton is so crazy, sleeping on a bird bath. Funny!

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