Extremely Cold

This morning at 6 am the temp was 28 below with a windchill of 54 below according to Rick. I slept in.


I went to the barn and I didn’t think it felt much different than say 20 below but I think the difference is the effect on bare skin. Last night we had a ground blizzard and I couldn’t see our neighbor’s yard light. This is the view from the quilt shop door this morning – I’m working at the long arm machine today.

Yesterday when Connie was here she brought Joe’s quilts. Have you ever used Cake Mix papers with a layer cake? That’s how this quilt was made.

Looks really fun but I’ve never done it before. Anybody tried this?

And this quilt is from Kim Diehl’s Simple Whatnot Club that Connie attends.

And remember this pile of Bullseye blocks? There’s 122 of them! I must have lost my mind! Evidently I’ll be making a much larger quilt than the 48 blocks – haha! And I don’t even have them pressed yet so thankfully I’ll have the rest of the week to work on it.

Rick is not driving today and the postal service is not working, the bars are closed so I hope everybody is staying home. On Monday afternoon the neighbor’s dog showed up here – who would leave their dog outside in weather like this? I immediately put her in a kennel in the quilt shop and thought Chuck would come looking for her but no. Yesterday afternoon I drove to his house to tell him Ellie was safe at my place and I got stuck in his yard! He helped push me out and then came to get Ellie. I would not let him take her until he promised to keep her in the basement at least. She has one heat bulb and a blanket in an open garage! I expressed my outrage in what I hope sounded like a reasonable concern for any dog left outside in the cold. I said I’d better not see her at my place again in this weather because I’m taking her to the shelter so she can find a better home. I know Rick would like me to keep my opinions to myself but I can’t and I won’t. I am appalled at people who leave pets outside in this vicious weather! Enough said.

I don’t have all the answers for you concerning the ads. I am going to look into getting quilt related ads but make no promises. Whatever you’ve been doing for the past two days has been wonderful – yes, I will keep writing and leading us in another quilt along – just don’t forget me when I don’t bring up the subject to you — which you should know is against all the rules!!! And if I get thrown out of Google Ads, that’s the end of this blog.

I’m heading back to the quilting machine and turning up the heat on my way! Stay warm wherever you are – this weather is nothing to fool with.

45 thoughts on “Extremely Cold

  1. Judy

    Connie’s quilts are so beautiful. I have a couple cake layers and a the layer cake mix recipe papers to use them with but haven’t started them yet. I am thinking of taking them with me in July to sew when I go to a quilting retreat with some friends.
    I can’t imagine leaving an animal out in the kind of weather you are having. It just amazes me how some people treat their animals. I hope you continue to stay warm.

  2. Karen

    I am with you and amazed someone would leave a dog out in that weather. I live in Dallas and it amazes me to hear of people leaving dogs outside when it is in the 30’s or the 90+ degrees. I don’t understand city people that have dogs & cats that are outside 100% of the time. Why have an animal if it is outside alone?

    I have not used Cake Mix because I have every other brand of triangle paper and the Triangulation CD, so I can make any size I need. I will look at then this weekend when I am a a quilt shop teaching.

  3. Linda

    Thank You for speaking up for that poor dog….The owner wasn’t even out looking around for his dog….Really????????

  4. Wendy

    I always wonder why would anyone choose to have a pet and then treat it so badly? I cannot even imagine leaving an animal out in the cold. Of course you should “educate” this dog owner. I am surprised that you were able to trust him to do the right thing after that. I probably would have just kept the dog. Thank goodness you were there to help that poor creature Mary.

  5. Deb - SW Minnesota

    I love the Kim Diehl quilt. I have a number of her books and have made 3 of her quilts using her applique technique. I love anything using the civil war reproduction fabrics – that’s why I ordered your book. I have the ability to work from home so I did not get to enjoy yesterday or today as a sew day – darn!

  6. Vickie

    I have used the Cake Mix patterns & have a few more to do. I really like them. They do help getting the correct size block, especially when doing a ‘new’ one. I am glad we missed the cold this time in the SW. We have gone through a lot of wood in the stove already. Stay warm.

  7. Becky from TX

    Way to go….shame on him leaving Ellie out in the cold….that just unforgivable!!!! I don’t mind the unrelated ads….I’ve even ordered from a couple of them!!! I WOULD HATE TO LOOSE THE BLOG!!!!!
    Keep warm!!!!

  8. Becky from TX

    I’m so proud of you for taking Ellie under you concerned wing…..shame on him!!! I know that you will take care of Ellie’s well-being. I really don’t mind the unrelated ads….I even ordered from them. I would hate to loose the blog!!!! Keep warm!!!

  9. Diane Bauer

    Always thankful there are people like you around who will advocate for animals like Ellie who aren’t being properly cared for. I cannot tell you how many stray dogs we have picked up over the years. Jenica just could not stand to see a dog running out in a field. She was late for school on a number of occasions as we picked up dogs, called the humane society, and then took them home to hold in our garage until someone claimed them. Our two dogs go out on a leash, even in the backyard, as we do not have a fence and we have far too many rabbits they would chase after, if allowed. I couldn’t bear to lose either of them. Our kitty was always an inside cat, and still is. I always wonder why people have pets if they don’t intend for them to live with them (inside, just like the people do).

    I LOVE Connie’s Kim Diehl quilt. The colors are absolutely the pallet I prefer. I haven’t used the cake mix or cupcake papers yet, though I’ve looked at them. I’d like to learn paper piecing. I’m going to take a class on pincushions at Loopy Ewe in April, so am loving seeing Connie’s pincushions. May have to look at the book she’s been working out of!

    I worry about everyone who is dealing with this Polar Vortex. It’s just too cold. One of my clients today told me how she’d gotten frostbitten walking from a car park to an office building in Minneapolis a number of years ago. Seems she had a scarf wrapped around her face and neck, but because she needed to be able to see, she had just a tiny bit of her face exposed, and it froze in just a very few minute’s time. I suspect, given her breath, there was moisture that compounded the cold. It’s just better to stay inside, if you can. My niece work in Mpls and their building is closed for the next few days and the employees are told they are absolutely NOT allowed to come in. The animals need to be cared for and that means some absolutely must get out. Be careful everyone!!!

    Oh! I had no ads on this post either!

  10. Donna Sproston

    You were right to give your neighbor heck!
    Thanks for the update on cupcake recipes. I have been wondering about them. I have done some paper piecing of pineapple blocks for pin cushions but wondered how the bigger blocks would be. Our schools have been closed all week. Now that I am retired everyday is a Friday, but I know the kids are going stir crazy! Today I posted some science experiments for cold weather. One was for beer slushies but I said that was for adults only. Balloons and bubbles are fun!

    The ads crack me up. Today I got one for life lert and one for motor oil. I will keep closing ads so you can keep blogging!

  11. San

    Thank you Mary for looking after another 4-footed friend. I cannot imagine the pain that poor pup suffered just walking through snow and ice over to your house. Sure hope your neighbor gets the message and your readers take heart to relay the same message in their town. Animals here have a hard time also, but I can see progress being made through a local animal rescue thrift shop and newcomers to the area who really care. We’re experiencing cold temps also, but nothing like yours. I think we got up to 34 today. A good day for sewing and making soup.

  12. Bonnie Crane

    When we got up this morning, taking into consideration Minneapolis’ wind chill and our actual temperature, we were 104 degrees warmer than the twin cities!!! Having grown up in northwestern Wisconsin and spending many years in St. Paul and Chicago, we are very happy to be in the desert southwest.

    Keep warm everyone.

  13. Sharon Lowy

    On our news (Chicago) it has been announced no animal should be left outside. They can suffer frostbite in a matter of minutes. If an animal is spotted outside alone police should be called! Criminal charges would be in order. Your neighbor is heartless if he leaves his dog out.

    You are right to tell him!

  14. Kim LeMere

    Mary I’m glad you gave the neighbor a piece of your mind about his dog, what is the matter with people when the temperatures are so brutal. I hope he listened to you and if not, then the pet deserves a better home. I have used the Cake Mixes to teach at my guild meetings. I find that most quilters have a “different” quarter inch and this makes it easy for all the blocks to match up and go together. I started with a lower number (1) since the lower the number the easier the pattern to make, this fall we are using number (5) and using a layer cake with a baseball theme. Everyone seems to enjoy quilting together, swapping pieces with your neighbor to mix it up and then designing our layout. The Cake Mix Quilt Book #1 gives multiple layouts with the first 8 cake Mixes. Stay safe and warm in this brutal weather.

  15. Holly Woodyatt

    leaving pets outside in the cold is my worst nightmare. Hope you check on Ellie. I think I would take her home!!

  16. Sue in Oregon

    Mary….At least you have More blocks than you need. I keep coming up short. I have 48 two small blocks sewn together, or one side. To get there I had to snitch from the other sides unsewn blocks. Now I had better count them again to make sure I have enough. I want to put it up on the design wall before I decide on borders.
    I sure wish your part of the country would warm up. That has to be so miserable. We watch a youtube series that takes place in Vermont. Wow. It looks so cold there, too.
    You must have felt like smacking the neighbor. Honestly…what are people thinking when they treat animals that way? Every bone in their bodies must be mean.

  17. Carol

    Hey there, we’re freezing here in western NYS, too, we’re expecting wind chills up to -40. Schools and businesses are all closed, today and tomorrow, there’s a travel ban and a state of emergency in all our little towns. A great day to sew.
    I don’t blame you for being angry about that poor dog. I think the ban should be in the garage in a fur coat with a heat lamp. Let’s see how he does.
    I click every ad I see that is clickable… some of them have a triangle instead of an X and it opens something up about personalizing ads. Today there was only one ad to open.
    I hope you have a better day tomorrow!

    1. Diane In Central Ohio

      Hey Kathy and Carol in Western NY. My cousin lives in Bath and she is freezing, too. Hunker down; i remember those cold days. Not much better here in Central Ohio. Brr.

  18. Diane in Central Ohio

    You go girl!! It is fine to tell someone who is harming a defenseless creature that he needs to do better. My friend “stole” a dog that consistently spent weekends with no water or food provided by the owners so my friend fed and watered it. The dog went to a loving family who had her for 15 years and we don’t think the people ever noticed their dog was gone!

    Connie’s quilts look so warm and cozy. I haven’t tried Cake papers yet.

    You are way colder than we are. I think you are close to Minneapolis so I figure that’s about how cold you are because Iowa is like Ohio, the weather people skip to Chicago, Pittsburgh, and New York!! We were at minus 1 today with minus 17 wind-chill. It IS cold:)

  19. Patty McDonald

    I’m in agreement with keeping animals inside during cold and hot weather. It was 42 here last night (yeah I’ve been told that isn’t cold) and our fur baby was inside. During hot summer months she is inside enjoying the air con. But then our girl is part human…..we think. Our chickens have a lovely hen house so they can get out of the cold or heat. It is the humane thing to do.
    I had a group of 6 women make that cake pattern with a layer cake. They furnished the color fabric and I furnished the Kona snow. Four of them were beginners but all of the quilts turned out beautiful. I would venture to say that pattern is fool proof (with a tiny bit guidance).

  20. Sandi Globus

    I love the Cake Mix papers! I’ve made a few quilts using them and have plans for others, even have a Pinterest Board labeled “Cake Mix Quilts” All of those quilts can be made using the papers. When I was vending at quilt retreats, I would give each attendee a sheet to try with the fabric. They then returned them to me and we had a drawing for the blocks. It gave everyone a chance to try it without committing to a project.
    Stay warm and hug those fur babies!

  21. Carol

    I have used the paper layer cakes and found them annoying. I did not like taking off all that paper and it made a big mess. It also adds to the cost of your quilt, in an unnecessary way. I would rather just sew. Just my opinion, maybe others find it relaxing.

  22. Dianna

    Thank you for taking care of that poor dog, you were his angel. Wisconsin is suffering too, so sewing and listening to the radio. The Humane Society has been on the news about pets, one of the suggestions was too have a bed of straw near the back door or a path with straw for the dogs to use to keep paws safe from the cold.

  23. Dianne H. in Ohio

    I made my great granddaughter’s first quilt using the Cupcake Mix Recipe last year. Each block turns out perfect so the whole quilt goes together perfectly. I loved using the papers. Next I will try the Cake Mix Recipe for a larger quilt. My least favorite part about quilting is cutting out the fabric. Using these recipe papers takes care of that. Try them Mary, then tell us what you think.

    Both of Connie’s quilts are so pretty, but I’m partial to the one made with KIm Diel’s fabric. I just love the colors she uses. They are very saturated colors and aren’t always used by other designers or quilt makers. I’m thinking of her turquoise, purple, pink and gold/yellow. Connie’s quilt is a perfect example.

  24. Angie

    Funny … this post has no ads. Last night I reopened some older posts and closed those ads for the second time!! It’s just odd that I do not see any ads in this post!

  25. Julie Burkhardt

    Mary, you are such a caring person..I too voice my opinion way more than my hubby desires.

    I have used the paper atterns for the layer cakes. I haven’t put a quilt top together cuz didn’t really know what to do with them. Mine are all batik flying geese on white background. I will figure it out some day. I like to paper piece, but not sure this version is for me.

  26. Kathy in western NY

    Bless your heart Mary to speak up for defenseless animals who are owned by ignorant people. Make them stand outside and see how they like it!! I have no tolerance for stupidity and careless attitudes.
    Connie’s quilts are stunning. My bullseyes will be bigger too. I don’t mind I guess till it comes to quilt it! Have good memories making it and that’s what I take away from sewing.
    Here we are in the midst of white out conditions and 4 degrees, but getting worse tonight and tomorrow. Buffalo is west of us so I think of them getting a foot of snow this morning. Our Schools already closed for tomorrow. Then 40’s over the weekend. Prayers for all the people who have to be out caring for others in these horrible conditions. Thanks for letting us know what you are doing.

  27. Meri

    PS I just went back to the last post and clicked ads and when I came back to this post there were ads! So I closed 5 😊

  28. Meri

    I’m reading this on my iPad today and there are no ads! I’m faithfully clicking them when I see them. 😉
    Keep warm…not nearly as cold here in VA but the wind chill was in the teens when I walked earlier and that’s cold enough!!

  29. Vickie

    Having just gotten a new phone, I discovered that I see no ads when I view the blog from it, but they are there when I go to the blog on my iPad or the regular computer. Hmmm, I said to myself, maybe this is why ads don’t get clicked sometimes. I will try to read from my iPad and not the phone.

  30. Suzanne Beech

    I have used the cake mix with civil war reproduction fabric. It was pretty easy to do. Have not finished the quilt yet. Keep warm! And yes continue to be a voice for those pets left out in the cold!!!!

  31. Dee Winter

    It was -25 at 8 this morning here in Shell Rock. I went out to feed barn kitties, horse, who won’t go in the barn, ran to store to warm up the vehicle. The drifts were horrible. Kid has been keeping at the drive, but last night was so windy here. The ads for me are a direct correlation to what I have been looking at online. Right now it’s the Zappos ad for some shoes I am lusting over. When I was looking at furniture, I got furniture ads.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Dee winter – so it stands to reason that if you were looking at quilting sites, you’d be getting quilting ads?

  32. Jo in Wyoming

    Oh! Mary, you are so right about taking care of that dog. I’m sure it was hard giving her back.
    I think I need a map of which building is the shop. I can figure out the house and barn, but where is the shop?
    I’ve not used those papers. I like paper sewing, I DON’T like tearing off the paper. Water soluble would be best, but, not many patterns and it’s kinda pricy.
    It’s getting warmer every day. Thank the Lord.
    With your new book coming out this weekend, I keep thinking about the soldiers during the war and enduring this weather. Stay warm.

  33. Patricia E Campbell

    I completely agree about animals being left outside in inclement weather. Here in Phoenix, AZ, there are too many irresponsible pet owners who tie out their lonely dogs all day in the miserable heat… The same goes for cat owners who let their cats wander all over the neighborhood, using the entire world as their litterbox. It’s very frustrating to me. I always kept my cats indoors, protected. I live in the city. If I lived in the countryside, that might be another story…
    We do still have owls, hawks, coyotes, etc that prey on small animals here in the city limits.

  34. Linda Baker

    Wind, white-outs, and extreme cold in west Michigan again today. Hubby has been to bird feeders at least three times-those birds are hungry in this weather! Working on that darn Ringo Lake quilt, at least my units are increasing in size, which is encouraging, lol. Just reading about your neighbor’s dog makes my blood boil. I hope that guy Chuck got the message loud and clear. Stay warm, Mary.

  35. Ginny

    My kitchen water froze in the matter of an hour. I had the water running but I turned it off by habit. It is so cold, my horses are huddled up by their hay bale in the sun. They won’t go in their barn! Animals need to be kept out of the cold!!!!
    I am working on the bullseye quilt, I am way behind but this cold will keep in inside working on it.Ginny

  36. Sheryl Austin

    I am making the bullseye quilt 7 x 7 & not putting the borders on. At least that is plan for now, am sewing rows together.

  37. Launa

    I enjoyed the ad from the CA shop I mentioned yesterday. Interesting about their mug rug club.
    It was 5o up here in Idaho near LOST TRAILS PASS this morning. The third lost dog hasn’t been found yet. Her two companions had traveled 18 miles up here. Haven’t a clue how they crossed the river or if they found another way to cross. At least their owner was looking for them after work!
    Looks like we will have a snow over the weekend. Good time to sew, except for Sunday!
    I enjoy all of Kim Diehl’s patterns n fabrics! I wondered about the cake mix quilts!
    Thanks for venting about dogs n them having shelter in nasty weather.
    Enjoyed the quilts today.

  38. Janelle Bucher

    I used the Cake Mix Recipe about a year ago and I loved it. It worked so smooth and precise. I would recommend them to anyone.

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