This has been an extremely cold windy day with a small amount of new snow which developed into a blizzard warning by noon. All of our windows look like this.


The barn was toasty warm this morning so I snapped a few pictures.

These two darlings wait by the feed room door and immediately jump in every single time I open the door for Hazel who checks for mice every single time I go to the barn!

And every single time I want to leave the barn I have to pick them up and remove them from the feed room. Sigh.

The chicken under this wire cage was a chick Reed and I got last spring but she is crippled and prefers the safety of the cage over her. I feed and water her under the cage.

And then there’s the goats along with Daddio and his two naked neck hens.

It’s hay inside the barn in weather like this.

Nobody wants to go outside to eat and I don’t blame them!

When I enter the barn the little chicks are peeping and scratching and running around in their pen but they soon duck under Mama when I get close.

Here’s the view this morning looking from the barn to the house – before the winds picked up.

When the dogs and I return to the house this is the scene…every single time. Ernie is laying there just waiting for Hazel to manhandle him – we think he must love it! She gets his head in her mouth and pulls on his tail and he just lays there.

On this blizzard day I took a look at the paper whites – they’re beautiful!

I spent the afternoon quilting my Bonnie Hunter mystery- I’m still not done but I had to stop for chores and supper.

I decided to throw Jim’s quilt up on the fence for a couple pictures.

And a couple closeups.

Here’s the back – I even left a couple pockets on the back.

Connie and I are caught up with book orders. I’m thinking of leading a quiltalong doing one of the quilts from Beyond The Battlefield – anyone game? I have to finish my Bullseye first!

Reed and I are enjoying this spectacular book of animal photos – I saw a program on TV about the photographer and how he captured these animals on backgrounds of black or white so the eye is not distracted.

And I will close with this photo sent in by Judy in Evansville, IN.

For Connie — When she gets tired of making quilts for the dental offices, maybe she could use Betty!

63 thoughts on “Blizzard!

  1. Becky from TX

    I love the picture of the inside of the barn…..great peace!!! The pictures you’ve taken of Jim’s outside is the perfect background for it!!! Busch Lite beer…..alright!!!! I just love the blog!!!!

  2. Sunflower

    I would love for you to do a quilt along from the new book! Prayers and good thoughts to Pete the horse and I put a card In The mail for Dianne today. Quilters are wonderful people as shown in your blog and the responses. 😊

  3. Polly Perkins

    I just got my book. What a happy day as I am suffering from a rib that came out of place and it is cold and still very icy. As I looked through the book, I had a hard time deciding which to do first and wondered if you were going to do a sew along… Lo and behold you mentioned it here! That will make my decision easy. Thanks.

  4. Janie Lang

    The paperwhites look so lovely! The animals look so cozy and warm too. I can’t remember a year the school districts have been closed so much..crazy winter!

  5. Paula S.

    I’ve received my book Beyond the Battlefield and love it. It’s a beautiful book and I’m trying to decide on which quilt to do first. I would love to do a quilt-along with this book if you decide to do that.

  6. Diane in WI

    Beyond the Battlefield and the Itty Bitty pattern arrived today. I glanced through it. My husband and I found many quilts we like. The wind is howling today. We lost our electricity yesterday morning due to the ice accumulation of two days. Then last night I thought it was getting colder in the house; the furnace quite working. Luckily, our son came and was able to get it going. Everything is solid ice. Our driveway is a skating rink. Hazel and Ernie made me laugh. Keep warm.

  7. Starrla Opferman

    I loved your pictures. The chickens are looking great and I always enjoy the pictures of them. I love your finished shirting quilt and the paper whites are a breath of Spring. I really should try planting some next year. I was at a recent quilt retreat and a young gal was making a quilt from her friend’s Dad’s shirts. He was a country western singer and the shirts had those pearl snaps, fancy enbroidery, and the fancy pockets all which she incorporated into the quilt. It was a wonderful memory for the friend and her Mom.

  8. Jackie Baumhauer

    Mary, You should send pictures of both your quilts to Bonnie Hunter. I bet she would feature them in her blog.

  9. Jeanne

    Love the photos — especially the goats and the quilt on the fence! Working along on my bullseyes, and I’d love to do a sew-along with the new book.

  10. Michele

    I wondered how I should quilt the Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt. Now I know I can use straight line. Thanks for showing yours!!! It is beautiful!

  11. Dianne Cook

    We are experiencing high winds here in Ontario this morning. Your description of Hazel playing with Ernie sounds so familiar to me. We have a new to us five year old German Shepherd and that is how she plays with our ten year older male cat. It did take a month for them to become buddies but all is good now. Please keep blogging as much as you can, I am in the throws of breast cancer, just waiting for a new surgery date, as the last one was postponed due to our terrible weather and then my MRI found another issue.
    Hopefully surgery should be within a week or two. I always enjoy all your blogs and look forward to them and the pictures everyday.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Dianne Cook – oh Dianne, I’m so sorry as all the girls will be when they read this. Breast cancer seems to have touched nearly everyone I know and then you have the weather complicating your own treatment. We are having extremely cold temps today after our blizzard yesterday – everybody will stay in the barn until temps warm up. I think our wind chill is -45 right now.
      I loved to hear about your big dog and your older cat! Hazel also loves an orange and white cat named JB and the two black cats, Deano and BC – she likes all the boy cats – she only tolerates the girls. Haha!
      I sure hope your surgery can be scheduled soon. Give me your mailing address so I can send you a card – I have a feeling others would like to put a card in the mail, too. Put your address in the comments section. Thinking of you.

      1. Dianne Cook

        Weather is calmer here this morning after most of our roads being closed yesterday. Thank you for all your kind words and thoughts. We have so many wonderful family and friends here in our church, neighbors and my quilt guild. My mail address is Dianne Cook, RR5, Kincardine, ON, Canada, N2Z 2X6. Keep on blogging. Your barn always looks so cozy.

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Dianne Cook – hope your roads get opened today – you can keep all the cold in Canada. My cat named Dianne also has two n’s in her name – she was named for a neighbor whose name is spelled the same so I’ve always called her “Dianne with 2 n’s”. I’m going to send you a card – I’ll look for one with a picture taken here at the farm.

  12. Susan Sundermeyer

    Wild weather here in Ohio. We had over 3″ of rain in the southern part of the state and a small tornado to the east. Thankfully no one hurt, just property damage. It was in the high 50’s-60’s. Today it’s back down in the 20’s. Lots of flooding all over. I am slowly working on my BULLSEYE quilt. I’m a beginning quilter, but I will finish this one for me! I would love ❤️ for you to do a rug-a-long. This is how I came to know your name when I purchased the CD from you. Lastly, my heart and prayers go out to Diane and her daughter for Pete the horse.

  13. Angie

    I received my book and of course it is wonderful!!! I love the look of the plaid shirt quilt. I am going to have to start collecting plaid shirts. I made a table runner but love the quilt look.
    We are waiting for your weather to come east. Soup time!!!

  14. Kelli

    Yes! Yes! Another quilt along would be fun. Thanks for doing the bullseye one – I’ve always wanted to do one and now thanks to you all u have a week in progress!

  15. Joyce C

    Am loving your new quilt book!! Can’t wait to see which quilt you’ll pick for a quilt-a-long. Jim’s quilt turned out beautifully. I know your SIL will feel his love when she wraps it around her. What a special gift. We were in a blizzard warning all day today. Warmer this weekend. I lived in Trinidad West Indies for a year, then Bahamas another year. And I’ll tell you I missed the 4 seasons we have! Yes.. I even love winter 😊

  16. Debbie Miller

    Beautiful pictures of Jim’s quilt against the snow! What kind of chicken is the gray hen?She is striking! It was 76 here is SC today and my daffodils are beginning to bloom. I think they are calling for another extreme cold spell again next week. I don’t mind snow but hate the ice storms. We are on baby goat watch-three are expecting and one usually has twins. We had three babies last Feb. 8 but one of the twins died.

  17. Donna O

    Mary….posting another post today to test my having to fill in all the info below. If it’s required each time I’ll do it. Not a problem.
    Yup, Mary email is necessary

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Donna O – I am not following this conversation – what info do you have to fill out?

  18. Donna Sproston

    Always love seeing the animals! The hens are beautiful. I am ready for a quilt along from your wonderful new book. It is 11 degrees and the wind is howling.

  19. Jennie in Texas

    Yes I would do another quilt along with you. Enjoy your
    posts and pictures. Take care out in the cold.

  20. Jo in Wyoming

    Great pictures today, and lots of em. It has been really cold here, -16 this morning! But not much wind.
    Count me in for a sew along from BTB.
    Out small quilting group met at the botanical gardens today. The annual stain glass show is hanging. It is just beautiful.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Jo in WY – I did it! With your expert guidance it was easy. BUT I think the wheels need attention. Because I just do straight lines the wheels never get used in the same way I’ll need them for the Bullseye. I’ve got a great repair/maintenance guy named Tony and my machine is overdo for a good cleaning and check up. Jo – I can’t believe it! Do you not use the yellow thread up button? I use it always when I do straight lines.

  21. Patty Turner

    Your photos brought me joy on an otherwise gray day! Would be interested in a quilt-a-long also!

  22. Kathy Hanson

    Love that Hazel is smaller than Ernie but she has the “upper hand” – Ernie MUST love it! Love your animal, flower and quilt pictures !! I had better hurry up and get my bulls eye quilt together as I look forward to another quilt along! What fun! Cold tonight, tomorrow will put Sunny’s blanket back on her and Roxie’s coat as it is really going to get colder tomorrow night. Brr!! We don’t have heat lamps so they have to grow really thick coats – Libby and Foxy sure do!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Kathy Hanson – yes, we’re in for a cold one! How is Sunny? Let’s email

  23. Jeanie from sw Illinois

    Thanks so much for all the pictures today. Jim’s quilt is beautiful, and the snowy, outside setting was especially lovely.

  24. Elaine Nixon

    Your kindness to your animals is inspiring. You have made a beautiful life. Thanks for lighting up my life…😘

  25. Diane Bauer

    Oh!! And LOTS of ads to click on today!! It’s weird how some days I get none and then days like today I get 6-8 to click on!

  26. Diane Bauer

    I just LOVE Jim’s quilt!! Can’t wait to hear your sister-in-law’s exclamation when she sees it!!

    Your Paperwhites are gorgeous!! I think i’m allergic, but love to force bulbs at this time of year. I go for tulips and their bursts of color!

    I read Beyond the Battlefield cover-to-cover last night. It is absolutely gorgeous!! I love the depth of colors. I would love a quilt-along from the book!!!! I vote for Caring Hands, but I’ll join in on whatever is decided on!! As soon as you posted photos I wanted to make that one. I understand now, as Bear Paw has long been my very favorite block!!

    We had a hard day here today. I had intended to see clients this morning and then shovel and then put the final side borders on my Bullseye. I got a text from the barn at 7 o’clock this morning, telling me my daughter’s horse had had a “mini stroke” last night. He is eating and drinking well, but has a sideways gait and some hind quarters weakness. The call to my daughter was difficult but necessary. Thankfully, she was done with class at noon today. We decided it was best for me to drive to Denver to get her and bring her home to see Pete. It was good to get her up here to see him, though that, in and of itself was hard. She loves him so. The vet will see him tomorrow and we will know more about what lies ahead. He definitely recognized us and was very happy to eat our homemade treats out of her hand. He has been such an amazing companion and friend to her for the past 15 years, since she was 6. Life is hard when you love animals. They never live long enough!!!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Diane Bauer – that’s tragic news! Will the vet be able to say if the horse will recover? He’s not that old really, is he? Was your daughter heartbroken? I am and I dont even know Pete. You said a call from the barn – whoever is in the barn saw it happen or just saw the effects? And what clients do you see? You can answer on my email if you’d rather.

      1. Diane Bauer

        We are hoping the vet will be able to give us some hopeful news tomorrow–something we can do for him to help make the time ahead better. Pete is 34 so a rather old horse. He has been healthy thus far, so while he is older, we had hopes he would have many more years yet. Yes, Jen is pretty heartbroken. They were such a pair. She spent so much time with him from the time she was 6 until now (age 21). She and I had good conversation today about Pete and their time together. Christa, our trainer and the barn owner, didn’t see it happen, but saw it last night and has kept her eyes on him. She is the next best thing to the vet–she takes amazing care of the horses in her care.
        I am a marriage and family therapist–see mostly couples in my practice.
        Thank you, Mary. I appreciate that you are an animal lover and understand what we are feeling right now.

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Diane Bauer – I thought he was 15 – but he and Jen have been together for 15 years, right? I misunderstood or I read too fast. I see tough days ahead and I’m really sorry. The pain of having a sick animal or losing one is grief itself. I hope you keep me posted.

          1. Diane Bauer

            Thank you, Mary. I am taking this much harder than I thought I would, but I am so sad for Jenica most of all. I will keep you posted!

  27. Angie

    That looks like one long, cold walk from the barn to the house!! Glad you have Hazel with you. Looks like you have all your critters well taken care of during the cold. Funny how all those personalities show up! And, count me in if you do a quilt-along from Beyond the Battlefield. Those are all beautiful quilts!
    Stay safe and warm!!

  28. Gina Thackara

    “Beyond the Battlefield” arrived in this morning’s mail. And, after a cursory scan through the pages, I spent the afternoon pulling together repro fabrics for my first quilt out of the pages. Trouble was, the darn family wanted to be fed this evening, so I had to stop my fun. The book is wonderful!!!

  29. Cindy Yoakum

    Do you know how enjoyable your posts are to us? Love your life and farm. Your posts make me smile and being recently retired, I want to be like you when I “grow up”! thanks for all your posts!

  30. mary jane from hudson WI

    I loved todays blog…full of life, color, hard work, fun loving pups and the dog in the dentist chair…loved it.
    It was just what was needed after spending a few days indoors. The snow and COLD temps has kept many busy inside. Driveways needed to be plowed out here in our neighborhood, they did it around 5 this evening, but now the winds will take over and blow it all back ! I put my quilting aside to get ready for the TAX I am finished with that so BULLSEYE QUILT is next to finish..I love the idea of the pockets on the back, wouldn’t that be great for little kids to hide their tooth in and for the fairy to find it….thanks again Mary .

  31. Diane in Central Ohio

    The picture with your house, Jim’s quilt, and the barn is stunning. The colors mesh so well. It is fun to see all of your animals. Those baby chicks are growing!! I worry when you have a blizzard so am always happy to see everyone is doing fine. I wish my dentist had a Golden Retriever “ blanket”.

    1. Diane in Central Ohio

      I replied to this post before I read yesterday’s—Tuesday’s. I showed my husband (the chicken farmer) the mama hen and he said when they “set”, their combs always get smaller so he knew she had had chicks. We had an operator in our small town in Western, New York. Our number was 368 and it was a private line because my dad was a small town lawyer. One day there was a fire up our street and my dad asked the operator if his kids were burning down the house! We weren’t. We didn’t get dial phones until 1963.

  32. Kathy in western NY

    We had ice all day here and now the wind has picked up so my dogs are pacing. They listen to the noise as it falls off the trees around here and it scares them so it’s going to be a long night here. Batteries are ready. Love seeing the cozy barn with the animals all safe and sound, YES!!! I would love a quilt a long from your new book.

  33. ada

    The book came yesterday or was it the day before. Thanks. So many of them look interesting. I too have the Bonnie Hunter to finish and also a couple of charity quilts that I am working on. I love seeing the photos of the barn and animals. Not too many goats and chickens here in the city. How long before you know whether those chicks are male of female?

  34. Pat Smith

    Your animals are so lucky to have your cozy barn for the winter. I wish other farm animals were so lucky. I love Jim’s quilt. I’m still not up to date with the bullseye quilt, but I’m already thinking of another quilt project. Is this why I have so many UFOs? I think so… I never thought of taking one of our goldens to the dentist with me, but the idea is genius!

  35. Marsha Ransom

    Loved seeing the animals and Jim’s quilt is so awesome! Love all the plaids & the pockets!! I just finished a quilt for my husband and he loves it! I’m so glad!! That he loves it and that it’s done! On to some pillowcases & shams to go with it & a swap by mail in a private FB group.

  36. Cathie Fisher Braman

    Mary – as much as I LOVE your quilts and barn goats and chickens and hens the picture
    you showed at the end was such an endearing one . If only we all could take our dogs to
    the dentist office to keep us company. Thank you so much for making my every day!!!

  37. Jess

    Jim’s quilt is beautiful! I just love how all the colors look together. You outdid yourself!!!!

    Love the barn pictures. I would love to have a few chickens but they’re not permitted here. I bed Ernie looks forward to ‘Hazel time’. Our lanai/pool area Is all screened in. My 2 male cats love to go out there and sun themselves. They come in for dinner and when dinner is over they wrestle with each other for 45 minutes. The oldest is 14 but he acts like a kitten when it comes to playing with his brother.

  38. Launa

    Was a sunny windy day, but @ 6:45 pm it’s 6 degrees outside up here near Lost Trails Pass at Idaho/MT border.
    Snow predicted for the weekend. Wacky weather everywhere! Stay warm!

  39. Donna

    Love your pictures. Love paper whites. Jim’s quilt is wonderful. Is the pattern one of yours or did I miss that info. It’s very striking Mary!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Donna – pattern is by Bonnie Hunter – book is in shop and don’t remember the name.

    2. CountryThreads Post author

      Donna – just came across Bonnie’s book More Adventures with Leaders and Enders. Jim’s quilt can be found on p. 43 and it’s called Four-Patch X. Mine is smaller than the one in the book.

  40. Ellie

    Thanks for the beautiful quilt photos! Love the dog at the dentist! So calming. The chickens are so cute! Seeing Jim’s quilt makes me want to make one too. Please stop adding to this ever growing list of quilts I want to make. I won’t live that long!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Ellie – that’s the thing – I won’t live long enough either and I REALLY want to make another rug – but when?

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