Clean Up

Our snowplow did not go by our house until this morning! The main hwy. north of us has lots of traffic but I had to go to Clarion today for a dr. appt and it took me one hour and 15 minutes to go about 40 miles. I took some pictures along the way.

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This stretch of Hwy. 69 between Belmond and Klemme was just reopened this morning and it’s 100% snow packed. This doesn’t mean anything to you folks far away but |people who know our area will be interested. This is tough driving – slow and both hands gripping the wheel while semis come at you barreling through snow that has cut the roadway by at least 25%. The shoulders are stacked high with snow and without being able to see the center line, you just hope everybody will be careful. If my knee didn’t hurt so bad I would have cancelled for the second time due to weather.

Betty, on the other hand, is quite happy with the snow. And Connie took some great pictures of her against all the white. It’s even hard to walk on this snow – it’s so white you can’t see the ground ups and downs – makes me dizzy.

And her favorite game is hide the ball in a snowbank and then find it. Wish Hazel would play that game.

I quilted yesterday – finished picture coming soon.

I tried very hard to make these lines imperfectly perfect – haha!

Another picture from the barn – one of Reed’s favorite hens, Debbie.

And a selfie with one of the bad hair day girls!

And a picture of getting a drink – she can hardly see to find the watered.

I took a few pictures of quilts in the snow before we got blasted last Sunday.

It’s always a challenge to take pictures of quilts when you have animals!

Here’s part of the reason the highway is so bad north of Belmond – this line of train cars parked on the tracks semi-permanently and pretty close to the road – the northwest wind wanted to blow the snow right through but the train cars stopped it – on the highway.

And the wind blew snow in the cat door and blocked it until Hazel jumped through. Don’t worry, the cats were all in the barn during the storm, even my stray black cat who may or may not be the lost Reed.

And we are bracing for more snow on Friday. All the ditches are full so where’s it going to go? Did you read Kathy Schwartz ‘s comment – she lives in SW Minnesota and has a dairy herd. Part of the shed roof fell in due to heavy snow and killed 9 cows! What a terrible mess to clean up – poor cows.

And did you read that Pete the horse is galloping in his pasture after a stroke. Great news!

Connie was able to get here and we are filling orders today – in the mail they go!

If time permits I’m going to her house to take pictures of her fabric mess.

37 thoughts on “Clean Up

  1. Holly in TH

    Wow, you really got blasted! A friend from Manly, IA sent me pictures and it was jaw-dropping. The situation with the train cars is the same thing that closes I 35 in southern Minnesota. Windbreaks mistakenly planted by MNDOT drop the snow on the southbound lane, which is higher than the northbound lane and it all ends up there. I went to a gardening day put on by the local extension service and an engineer from MNDOT explained windbreaks and where not to put them–ha! Wherever they are, those white-knuckle drives are no fun!

    Poor cows! What a terrible thing to happen! I’m glad your animals were all safe in the barn. Winds like that are just plain scary! I hope that black cat is Reed, come back to find safe shelter.

    Once again, I love the staging for your quilt photos. The animals are always a plus. Once upon a time, you had a basin of free photos in the shop and I still have one up of a quilt with a tuxedo cat named Lewis walking along the top of it. How I remember his name, I have no idea–there’s so much I forget these days!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Holly in TH – I asked my trucker husband about the windbreaks and he says you’re right on!

    2. CountryThreads Post author

      Holly in TH – forgot to say I enjoyed remembering Lewis – my Millie of today could be his twin.

  2. Synthia Noble

    Your quilts are soooo beautiful!! Great job. 🙂

    The snow banks along the roads remind me of going up the mountains to ski here in Oregon…..and along our shoveled sidewalk in Iowa when I was little. We kids would dig out enough snow to crawl in and sit and play we were eskimos in our igloo. Such fun memories, but piled up snow certainly is inconvenient in “real life”.

  3. Judy Moore Pullen

    Thanks so much for sharing! I live in the heart of the Texas hill country. Our peach tree is blooming, so are irises, bluebonnets,
    And red bud trees. Love your quilts. What is your secret for getting so much done?

  4. Diane Bauer

    The snow on the road is just crazy!! I always hope, too, that people will be careful. Out here many seem to forget how to drive in the snow from one storm to the next. I love the snow as long as I can stay put and avoid driving in it!

    Your quilts are gorgeous wherever you photograph them, but the snow photos sure make the colors pop! And I love the animals! I nearly always have a dog paw in my photos when I lay my quilts out on the floor. I’m sure the dogs think I’m laying them out just for their benefit!

    Betty certainly seems to love the snow! She’s got the long legs necessary to plow through the drifts!

    Love the chicken selfie!! What breed is your bad hair day girl?

  5. Mary Waller

    Love your Polish chicken, she is so pretty, We raised White Laced Polish bantams and White Crested Black Standard Polish. They are so funny, I am so glad to live in California for the weather, otherwise you can have the state with all its taxes. I live in simi desert and actually had a dusting of snow on our car the other night. I don’t envy you driving in those conditions, will pray for your safety. I hope the doctor was able to help you with your knee.
    Keep warm and safe, Mary

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Mary Waller – we say we wouldn’t want to live in CA because of the fires and the mudslides. So every location has its good and bad points, doesn’t it?

  6. Ellie

    Love the pictures of your quilts, especially against the snow. The animals are a Plus! Sorry to hear about the cows. What a mess! Seeing your pictures of snow reminds me of the years we lived in upstate NY. My city mom couldn’t believe there were ditches beside the road to take the snow when the plows came thru! Stay safe!

  7. Launa

    Mary….our snow is plowed by our CanAm now n next the snow thrower goes along and the edges get higher. Looks like your hiway. My knees and sciatic nerve are not liking this weather! Hamilton, MT sort of closed up last night early..people were told to go home and stay there due to blizzard n wind. Our son had just gotten a plow blade installed on the CanAm so towed it on the trailer here slowly thru Lost Trails Pass. Its been doing a fine job in the snow since morning. 60% chance of more snow today thru Thursday. I love the Redlands Sewing Center ad!
    Hope your knee improves!

  8. Betty Klosterman

    Some other pictures from Belmond friends showed #69 with just 1 lane of traffic so people had to wait their turn. You had to go thru that to get to Clarion? The snow was piled high on both sides making interesting driving. And now the shoveling out. I’m thinking about you.
    Just got to love the bad hair chickens. They would always make a person laugh even on a bad day. They would have to have a good attitude!

  9. Peggy S

    Oh,my!! So much news today. . . Love seeing it all, except for the poor cows.
    I see your tall “pencil cactus” by Connie. I have had mine for years. It sits in a south window, goes outside in the summertime, but gets long & leggy anyway!! And an ugly lime green rather than the nice dark green it should be!! Oh, my, what to do?? Maybe time to toss it?? It Holds some of the Christmas lights, tho’!! 🎄 🌵

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Peggy S – honestly what am I going to do with that huge pencil tree? I have started many others from it and I don’t have the heart to throw it out!

  10. Carla

    Kathy S. You have my sympathies at the loss of building, cows and revenue. Cousins live on my great-grandfathers homestead in upper NW Minnesota, forty year old pole building collapsed from the snow weight.
    Mary, your snow banks are like the photos of northern lower Michigan this past weekend. The big plows were out up there yesterday morning, how they found the road is beyond me. Some roads they couldn’t clear as too many vehicles were stuck in them and the plows couldn’t maneuver around. If you can find pictures of Michigan Tech in the UP or Marquette, Mi they have both had over 15+ feet of snow this year
    Down mid state along Lake Michigan my county is below normal snowfall by almost 20 inches.
    I so appreciate your photos, and writings. Looking forward to making the quilt in the snow.

  11. Dianne M Cook

    Mary You have way more snow than us. Ours keeps melting with the freezing rain.
    The quilts look lovely on the snow.

  12. Vickie in Ga

    First, I got my book and patterns I ordered yesterday. A nice surprise for the day. It was a nice sunny windy day. You have my sympathy dealing with all that snow! I can only imagine. We have snow magedden if we get more than an inch. They forecast snow and everyone rushes to the grocery store. We aren’t equipped to deal with it down here.

  13. Gramapama

    Mary, your first photo reminds me of rural roads in winter from 60 some years ago. I’ve told stories to my grand kids about walking too and from school on huge snow piles that seemed to be almost up to the telephone wires! I usually get funny looks and a “sure Grama” … now I have proof! It’s snowing here now … looks like someone’s shaking Grandma’s Feather Bed! I love your quilting on the bright quilt under your needle today. I’ll be trying that myself on my lap sized tumbler quilt that is on my UFO list. Thanks, Mary, your posts make me smile!

  14. Sue in Oregon

    The road looks treacherous. Especially to me as I have never had to learn to drive in snow and ice. Scary looking! Worried about your knee. Hope the Dr. visit helped with the pain. The only thing that helped my husband was knee replacement surgery. But, he is so happy he did it.
    Love that crazy hair-do hen and your quilts in the snow.

  15. Diane in Central Ohio

    Those quilts really are stunning! Good thing Hazel stays away from that tall snow. She’d be lost in there. Scary. I, too, grew up with big snow storms in Western New York and those big piles of snow. It was great fun when we were kids. I hope your knee is ok, Mary

  16. Paula S.

    I’m glad I don’t have your snow, however, we have ice in the forecast starting at midnight tonight through early Thursday morning. I’m just so sick of winter and cold weather!
    I do love your pictures especially of all the animals. Your selfie with the bad hair day hen is hysterical! And I thought I had bad hair days!

  17. B. J. Berlo

    I grew up in New Hampshire and we always had big piles of snow everywhere in the winter! I’m in Virginia now and the last snow left about 4″ and two days later the temperature was 58°. Seeing these pictures brings back lots of memories. Also, just thought I’d tell you that when your book came out with the Bulls Eye Quilt on the cover I promptly made that quilt and I’m still using it today.. I also used that technique to make a wall quilt with my collection of Australian Aboriginal fabrics that hangs in my living room. I enjoy your blog immensely! B. J. In Virginia

  18. Angie Rowland

    So sad about the cows. They have wonderful personalities it must be devestating.
    We have lucked out in Baltimore but feel horrible for you living in this weather.
    Love the quilts and started collecting plaid shirts.
    Can’t wait till the summer shirts start showing up.

  19. Nikki M....Tx

    The snow banks are a sight to behold! Reminds me of living in Iceland…I want to put on a sweater just looking at it. Having run a cow/calf operation my sympathy goes out to your reader..what a devastating loss. The quilts just sparkles in the snow,& love the animals, they just add to the appeal All of y’all that are having this winter weather,be safe & stay warm.

  20. Betty Snyder

    Look forward to your stories and pictures Mary. Just like having a dear friend visit.

  21. Arrowhead Gramma

    Loved the photos of Betty playing in the snow. Brought back memories of our Black Lab, Mystic. She loved the snow and would stay out all day in it if we let her – we did not.

    Have driven on the snow packed roads and it is no fun. We have had snow here and out roads were similar for awhile but nowhere near what you have. Stay safe.

  22. Gwen

    I love seeing your pictures of the snow. I remember many days like that when I was growing up in northern Iowa. We have gotten snow this year in Pittsburgh but it gets warm enough to melt before the next snowfall.

  23. Becky fromTX

    I remember snow banks like those from the days when I was little…I grew up in Osage. Your winter has been brutal this year!!! Got my new book the other day in the mail. Those 2 quilts that are pictured in this post are my 2 favorites!!!! Love all your pictures of everything on the farm. Your blog is the one thing I read first and always make my day better! Thank you so much!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Becky from TX – you know Osage has got to look like it does here – snow everywhere and today our high was 5 with a NE wind making our windchill brutal. It always makes me feel good to know I could make someone’s day better – even if mine was lousy – haha!

  24. Jeanie from sw Illinois

    Wow, Mary! That is a major amount of snow. Thank you for posting all those snowy pics. I grew up a half-hour west of Peoria IL, and we used to have bad winters. I am now two hours south with more moderate weather.
    I do hope the black stray is Reed. The quilt pictures taken in the snow are amazing!

  25. Kathy Schwartz in SW MN

    Thanks for all the concern about our cows. Today the vet came and told us to shoot 2 more because their eyes were all white, no beautiful big brown color. Probably internal bleeding. One more may have to go tomorrow. A total of 11 so far. Four are still trapped under the mess. We hope to get them “uncovered” tomorrow. They were gentle souls.
    The quilts are beautiful in the snow.
    If you need a new knee, go for it—-the physical therapy is brutal,(about 6 weeks), but worth it. It also means no ladders, kneeling or digging for ever after.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Kathy Schwartz in Sw MN – I can hardly stand to read your comment – it’s horrific! Yes, milk cows are gentle souls – I love cows AND I eat meat but I could never eat a cow I had known in person. The cows still trapped are dead, right? If not, you’ll surely put them out of their misery, right? Sorry, I don’t mean to go on about your cows but I’ve thought about your situation many times and actually dreamed about them. So so sorry for your mess. Ugh.
      If I can’t do ladders, can’t kneel or dig how will I ever live here? I don’t think knee replacement is for me.

  26. Becky Turner

    I think your snow count beat mine but I am at an all time personal high here with 30 inches and 2 canceled Dr. appointments…oh and a cold for the first time in 15 years. Here in central Oregon it usually comes over several weeks with melt in between not this year… Also no snow plows on my little bit of road

  27. Brenda Archambault

    Mary, you’ll just have to adopt Reed! Giving up the things you love is difficult but ending the pain is worth it. You’ll still have your eyes, hands and all the other skills and never ending compassion you possess.

  28. Diane in WI

    The snow banks are really something. I know that white knuckle feeling when driving. It is always so good to get home in one piece. It looks like Betty is trying to make a snow angel. Love all the pictures. I feel for Kathy Schwartz. My husband was a dairy farmer. It’s a wonderful way to make a living, but being responsible for the cows can be very stressful. I hope things improve for her family.

  29. Ann Barlament

    I saw where MNDOT was sending plows from Minneapolis down to southern Minnesota, to help dig out the main highways. Many of those roadways have snow twice the height of the plows.

    Today is sunny, which means it’s bitter cold outside. And next we will roar into March like a lion with a snow storm on March first.

    I keep thinking of where will all this moisture go and already imaging water crested fields and flooding!

    How sad for the family that lost their cows!! This winter has been brutal in more ways than we can count.

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