Monday, March 16, 2020

Today is Connie’s actual birthday and I’ll bet she won’t forget this one! How things can change in less than 24 hours – I hardly recognize our lives any more. But this is the best medicine to escape reality for a couple hours – spring yard work! I promised myself I would limit how much I do each day so here’s two days’ worth.

This doesn’t look perfect but before I started I couldn’t even see the rocks!

The chickens don’t know our world has changed – they still come up to scratch for tasty morsels under the bird feeders.

I finished binding the red and white snowball quilt.

Jo in Wyoming sent her Dirty Dozen finish and I think it’s sort of hard to see but she has done so much work on this quilt that I’m posting it anyway. She quilted the background first and hand appliqued the mama giraffe reaching down with her tongue to her baby below. What a project! I’d love to see it in person.

Hazel is only interested in the mailman pulling in.

If you might panic when thinking of how restricted your life is, go outside and do yard work – the fresh air will do you good! Quilters can never be bored – start a new quilt! Or finish one that’s been laying around for awhile.

I’ve so enjoyed the comments – and I hope you’ll all feel part of a small group of quilters who have each other to commiserate with. I know I do!

47 thoughts on “Monday, March 16, 2020

  1. Carrolyn v

    Sounds like you have been very productive. I actually put a quilt top on my longarm that I finished 12 years ago! I pieced a backing and a piece for batting trying to use up what I have! Made me feel content!

  2. Cheryl

    Love seeing your outside work. We are at least two weeks behind you and I can’t wait to be outside and work in the dirt. You are doing really well with two new knees. We are keeping busy cleaning, painting and recovering chairs and now I’m starting a quilt and finishing two more. The coronavirus is bound to do its worst, but we are hardy and will follow our leaders instructions about social distancing…and hopefully become better neighbors and people. Thanks for your lovely blog to keep me company.

  3. Jo in Wyoming

    Someday I will learn how to edit pictures!
    Thanks, Mary.
    I think those chickens are beautiful, Miss Hazel is such a card. She makes me giggle.
    You have green leaves among the rocks. We are forecasted to get another blizzard Wednesday. Instead of cleaning we will shovel. Loretta will get black, muddy feet again.

    I followed my head and canceled quilting in jail today. Next week too. Hopefully this insanity will calm down somewhat by then . I miss the girls but am safe and healthy.

  4. patti leal

    this new ‘life’ we are living is rather strange. i’ve been housebound for quite a while because of health issues (copd and heart issues). dd called her dad and gave him ‘what for’ for going to work and exposing me to what ever he runs into. tis okay. he knows. i’m a bit worried because i already have a respiratory infection and today have felt my weakest. this too, shall pass. happy birthday to connie. hope she enjoys her day.
    my biggest concern is the restaurants being closed. we do alot of eat out by bringing it in. (wipes me out to cook now). fortunately most of my quilting can be done sitting down. i’ve found it interesting to see how other areas are coping. i really feel for the minimum wage workers whose kids are out of school. at least employers and nba players are stepping up to help pay them. today we were told our libraries are closed til ?. schools are closing and some is being done on line, epecially the colleges. i do wish they would decide if this is for two weeks or now eight weeks. hope everyone stays healthy and not stir-crazy. patti in florida

  5. Rosalie

    Happy Birthday to Connie!
    My 2 quilt guilds have canceled for this week and my bee is electing to stay home. Husband and I went to grocery store and WalMart this morning and got what we needed quickly- did not need paper products or milk or eggs – those are hard to come by – and there were no carrots in the grocery but Walmart had them.
    Husband has decided not to go to the gym for at least the next few weeks- thought after coronavirus update today they will probably close.
    I’m working on Bonnie Hunter Frolic and have 12 blocks completed and more in pieces. Have at least 8 quilts to bind for s 95 year old friend who has limited vision.
    I’m also itching to start a new quilt. And then there is the garden and animals! We had drizzle yesterday so got some goat hooves trimmed- best to do when they are soft from ground moisture!
    Have a wonderful and productive week!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Rosalie – tell me about your goats – what kind, how many, kids coming? Etc

  6. Diane in WI

    I received the patterns for the little houses paper piecing. Thank you. I worked on some punch needle, quilling, and went through some patterns I have taken out of magazines to toss out what I know I’ll never get done. My husband and I have to venture out tomorrow because he has his cancer infusion, and I have to get the oil changed in the car. Be careful everyone and stay healthy.

  7. Charlotte Shira

    I love your snowball quilt and Jo the giraffe quilt is amazing.
    I tried to go to Safeway today to get some bananas and you couldn’t even get in the parking lot. My dear neighbor brought me over 4 bananas and 2 rolls of paper towels.
    We were at the funeral home today to complete the arrangements for my husband and I got an alert on my phone about a 7 county lock down starting at midnight tonight. Found out later that we could only have 10 people attending his funeral. We have 11 with just my kids and grandkids so we are postponing the service. Don’t know when we can have it now.
    Happy Birthday to Connie! And everyone stay healthy.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Charlotte Shira – I am so so sorry you can’t have the service now! If all else fails, remember he is already in Heaven and not in CA – the service is for YOU, not him. Remember the story about the woman who wanted to be buried with a fork in her hand. We’re always told to keep your fork for dessert. Because, the best is yet to come!

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Charlotte Shira – I, too, love the fork story and tell it many times! THE BEST IS YET TO COME!

  8. Barbara F.

    The quilting on Jo’s giraffe is beautiful! I could see it once I enlarged the photo. Happy Birthday to Connie! 🎂 Great progress in your yard Mary. 😊 Love your red and white snowball quilt. Made our grocery run today, so I’m looking forward to some Sewing tomorrow. 🧵

  9. LaNan Eldridge

    Happy birthday to Connie! Snowball quilts are a favorite of mine. I really like your red and white one. I spent the day doing machine embroidery. It’s an advent calendar started two years ago!! Hopefully I can wrap it up least the embroidery part. I went to an embroidery retreat last weekend and it’s always such an inspiring time!

  10. Bobbie

    Happy Birthday to Connie, hope you had a great day.
    Charlotte I’m so sorry for your loss. It’s really hard at any time to lose your spouse but with this virus and everything closing it has to be really hard. I’m sure that since he is in Gods arms he will be ok with a later service.
    We have a lot of cases here in Washington state. We just had the first 2 close to us in Cowlitz county at the Longview hospital yesterday. We are staying home. I went to the grocery store last Friday before I even heard about the craziness at the stores. It was afternoon. It was nuts. There was no meat, chicken, paper products, can goods, sugar, flour, soup, noodles, rice. So much was gone you didn’t know what was on the shelf’s before they were empty. I got about a $100. Worth. I think it will last as we have our own meat. But just a little chicken. I’m about out of bread but have can biscuits. I also stopped and got dog food for my 3 dog’s enough for 28 day in wet food and over a month in dry food. I think we will be ok. I’m almost 75 and hubby is almost 84 so because of our age we want to stay close to home. We watch tv, read, I go out to my sewing room And we get on the computer some. I really think everyone should take this very seriously and do everything we can to stop the spread of this virus. I think this will be a history making virus and hopefully something that never happens again. I just ask everyone to not panic and do what the government tells us is safe. I think our young folks will see a little bit of what it was like before we had car to take us everywhere quick. You have the cars just no where to go. It will be a eye opener for some.
    Mary I’m glad your weather is letting you get out. Our ground is still so wet. It’s cold this week hear but will rain all of next week. Everyone take care!

  11. Jeanie S, Central IL

    Mary, your snowball quilt is beautiful, and the giraffe quilt made by Jo/Wyoming is adorable! My condolences to Charlotte-so sorry. Happy Birthday, Connie.
    In downstate IL, we have fewer virus cases than Chicago, but it is still a concern especially for senior citizens. I finished up a baby quilt yesterday and worked on my sewing room organization today. We moved here last fall, so work in the yard will occupy our time, when we are too restless indoors. Take care all. 😍

  12. Wendy

    Happy Birthday, Connie. I’m in Victoria, BC. More restrictions today, I feel like I’m racing the clock to get things done at work before everything is shutdown. We had some new cases on the Island. Things are getting scary. Glad I can go and quilt. Stay safe everyone.

  13. Sandy

    I started a new quilt to keep me busy after finishing 2 quilts that have been lingering for years.we are fortunate in new Zealand that we are geographically isolated and have only 11 cases ( infected people coming in from overseas), so life is normal wishes, stay safe, sandy

  14. Mary

    All of my quilting activities are cancelled. Now there’s no Mass to attend for the next two weeks. I have plenty to do in my apt. but miss the social interactions. I made a commitment that 8 would take a walk each day. Tonight when I went out, it was raining lightly so I walked in the rain. Thank you for sharing what it’s like in your area. I live in Orange County, CA – Disneyland is closed and now South Coast Plaza as an employee at the plaza tested positive. Praying for all.

  15. Gloria from CC

    Happy Birthday Connie! I hope you had a wonderful day yesterday! I love the snowball quilt – it’s on my wish list to make one. Jo’s giraffe quilt is adorable and must have been a tremendous amount of work. I’m jealous that you’re able to work in your gardens. I have a little magnet attached to my leg named Angel who won’t allow me to do anything but sew and watch TV. She lays in her bed while I sew and lays in my lap while I watch TV. I know she’s afraid that I’ll leave her so for now I need to stick close. I hope everyone stays safe and healthy.

    1. Lois Ann Johnson

      Hi Gloria: I am assuming you are the “Gloria” who has Angel (who we all prayed for last week). It sounds as if she is getting nicely back-to-normal. Happy Birthday to Connie! I hope everyone stays healthy. This virus is slowing all of us down long enough to take a deep breath. That is not all bad, right? Mary: good work on your outside chores. I still haven’t gotten out yet to do any.

      1. CountryThreads Post author

        Lois Ann Johnson – well, it’s not perfect yard work weather but I just couldn’t wait to get out and do something!

    2. Frances

      Hi Gloria. I’m so glad Angel is doing well. Angel’s rescue story with you is a miracle for her. Bless you for that.

    3. CountryThreads Post author

      Gloria from CC – Angel needs to know you’ll always be there with her and I know you will …. but she’s not so sure. She loves you, doesn’t she? Is there anything more rewarding than reaching out to a neglected dog who then becomes your whole whole … and she yours?

  16. Angie from Baltimore

    Amazing that we can stay in touch with others across the country and are going mostly through the same thing. I live in a retirement community outside Baltimore and we are asked to stay in our apartment and come only to pick up dinner. One lady said many of us have gone thru the Great Depression, WWII, Vietnam Nam, Desert Storm, Ebola and we can get thru this. So cleaning closet, Paper piecing and lap projects so Molly my cat can Velcro herself next to me. So stay well and stay put.
    Happy Birthday, Connie

  17. Paula Philpot

    Your house looks so nice. I made the red snowball quilt also. I need to quilt it and do binding. Don’t forget your label! Listening to the news so much does make us anxious but I don’t want to miss anything about it. I have appt today in Lexington with arthritis Dr. so I am keeping that appt. since it might take longer to get in the next time for the first visit. I pieced a quilt all day yesterday. It is a new one that Lisa Bongean put out with her new line of Indigo Fabrics. Have a good day. Happy Birthday to Connie
    Paula in KY

  18. Jenn

    Happy Belated Birthday Connie! Thanks for sharing your life with all of us. It’s a bright spot.

  19. Brenda in SC

    Happy Birthday Connie! Jo, just love the giraffes. And the red snowball quilt is on my wish list as well to make one day.
    I am staying in amid this COVID-19 as I have Sarcoidosis and so afraid I will end up with this flu as my immune system is so compromised. So, hubby does all the shopping and running around. He is such a sweetheart!
    Everything here in SC is starting to close down and they have actually closed Myrtle Beach area to ALL tourists. You can not get in to the area unless you live there . The same for Las Vegas strip from what I hear.
    They have closed all schools and any place that congregates more than 10 people, other than grocery stores, hospitals, pharmacies, etc. Restaurants and fast food is carry out and drive thru only.
    Most stores have stopped restocking as the want to do a deep clean when this is over, so they are not restocking non-essential items. Trying to find toilet paper and cleaning supplies is almost impossible. So very glad we always have a good supply of what we need.
    I want to get out and work in the yard but our yard is just so wet. We are sitting on clay soil, good old red dirt. So much needs done out there, but will have to wait as it is raining today and more expected.
    I am working on some embroidery and making some things for my sister who is expecting a “oops Baby” in June…..LOL….she thought she was going through the change, but nope, that wasn’t it…..Hahaha….
    Hope y’all stay safe and get some quilting and sewing time in.

  20. Sunflower from Michigan

    Hello, Mary and everyone. In southeast Michigan so many things are shut down. I did a grocery store run yesterday so won’t have to go anywhere for a while. Couldn’t buy eggs or toilet paper though as there weren’t any. its a very eerie feeling seeing shelves empty in stores. The whole time I was shopping, I kept wondering if I was hoarding or just buying what we need for the week, like a normal grocery store trip.
    I have been walking in my neighborhood and at our local park. I see several people but am able to maintain social distance as recommended. I have been “training” for the half marathon in Indianapolis in May but now I think it will be cancelled or postponed. Waiting to hear. This crazy idea was my daughters since I am 60 and she is 30, we are commenerating those milestones by competing together. Personally, I think I may be crazy!
    And we just heard that the tulip festival held in May in Holland, Michigan is cancelled. In my city, our library has drive up service but people aren’t allowed inside the library. I’m thankful for this at least as I can get movies to watch since there isn’t any basketball to watch.
    Our weather is still too cool for much gardening. But our tulips and other spring flower are coming up.
    The snowball quilt really is beautiful and I am going to put that on my list! I like the giraffe quilt, very touching. I have really enjoyed hearing about Angel and seeing her photos. My heart goes out to Charlotte, please know the readers on this blog are thinking of you. I want to wish Connie a happy birthday! I’m heading into my sewing room. This is a bit like hibernating. Take care and stay healthy.

  21. Janice Hebert

    Had to laugh about your comment about your sister’s “oops” baby! My niece is expecting her third child soon but the baby is breech. She’s in the hospital today – they are trying to turn her into the right position, will be praying for Kate and the baby. Things are about the same here in MA regarding the virus. Schools, town hall, library are closed. No social gatherings. I heard there are six cases of actual virus here in Essex County. So we are staying home as much as possible. We did work in the yard this past weekend, the weather here has been wonderful. I do wonder what the lack of snow this year will mean for gardens though. We had much less than usual. But my daffodils love it! They look better than ever, lol. After seeing your red and white snowball quilt Mary I have put that on my “list of things to do”! So pretty. Jo’s quilt is wonderful! Gloria, I can just picture Angel sticking to you like glue, haha. So happy for that little dog. Well, going to see what I can get done today. God Bless, Jan in MA

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Janice Hebert – gosh, don’t forget to tell us about Kate and the baby! And if you’ve got the virus that close to you, stay home! Yard work is so soothing to the soul when you realize it’s a pleasure and not a chore. And since I’ll have lots of time this spring, it will all get done! Yay!!!

  22. Mrs. Goodneedle

    I love your red and white snowball quilt– it is wonderful! You’re right, as quilters we won’t run out of things to do; in fact, maybe these are the days we’ve been stockpiling for!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Mrs. Goodneedle- YES! I think we’ve all been yearning for time at home to sew more and now that our wish has been granted, we’d better make good use of it and as a quilter, I will not complain!

  23. Marian Stever

    Mary, the snowball quilt is so eye-catching! It is my favorite design. Hazel is so fluffy and cute. The chickens are a Country Threads painting. I did some yardwork–shoveling snow off my patio. That is about it from this gal in Rochester, MN. Be safe everybody and hunker down in place. Thank you, Mary, for keeping us connected in this unprecedented time.

  24. Cheryl in St. Paul

    We would really feel quarantined without social media, wouldn’t we? We just returned from a month long road trip to FL. I’m filling the day with laundry, bread making and dusting, as well as plowing through a big stack of mail. I think this is a great time to be sure to reach out by phone to the elderly, not only to see if they need anything but also to say we care.

  25. Sandi

    Hi from LA, (lower Alabama)! 😂 everything here has come to an almost standstill. That’s okay , several of us quilters have decide we’ll just stay in touch via the phone and text and emails. It’s going to be fun and different than what we’re use to. Hang in there and let’s make this an adventure and not a chore. I do pray everyone stays healthy and this is over before we know it. Hugs,

  26. Margaret Jessen

    Hello Mary, Love your snowball quilt — the binding is perfect for it. Jo’s quilt is spectacular. Happy Birthday to Connie!!!! We are just staying in–in North Texas — so take care everyone. This too shall pass!!! Hopefully very soon.

  27. Suzanne Beech

    Wow wish I could stay home, but alas I work for a very small company. We have a camping trip coming up in 2 weeks and we are wondering if we are going to he able to go.
    Have fun on the farm, and quilting. I will be at work daydreaming about quilting!!!
    Keep safe!

  28. Susan Sundermeyer

    Happy Birthday to Connie! Today Ohio was supposed to vote in the primary but was it cancelled. The state has relaxed the unemployment rules so people who are not working now due such things as restaurant shutdowns can apply for benefits. It’s predicted to be 72* on Friday but rainy.

  29. Kay Crandall

    I am totally in love with Jo’s quilt – it made my heart sing just to see it. In Illinois all schools, restaurants, bars, libraries, etc. are closed; but a lot of the restaurants are doing carry out only and will deliver curbside or to your house. I am going to make sure I patronize the locals frequently and give a bit extra cash when I pay – just hope they will still be around when all this is over. My husband and I are in the high risk group (both 78), but I am very healthy and he is not. Besides diabetes, he also has end stage kidney failure and he has to go to dialysis three times a week – that really scares me. Both his doctor and dentist called today and canceled tomorrow’s appointments (his Dr. was routine check up and dentist was to put a permanent crown in). Very scary time for us oldsters.

    For those of you whose libraries are closed and need something to read or listen to, there is an app that my friend told me about and I think it’s wonderful. Called “Libby” (look for it on the App Store) – you put your library card number in and you can download books on your kindle or tablet to read or listen to for free. I have used it many times and it’s great.

    Stay well everyone, and aren’t we fortunate we have our quilting to take our minds off things? I have been working on my Dirty Dozen for the month, but am going to put it aside and make a comfort quilt for my brother in law who was just diagnosed with cancer – pancreatic and liver. Want to get it done in the next couple days and send it to him.

    1. Kathy in western NY

      Kay, do you have a favorite comfort quilt pattern you can sew up quickly? That’s always my problem….I spend too much time thinking of what to make them and I just need to get busy with a tried and true pattern I can whip up.
      Good luck with all you have on your plate.

      1. Kay Crandall

        Kathy – a few years ago I bought a kit that was flannel and looked like a four patch pieced top, but was really a “cheater”. Thankfully I bought borders and backing at the same time so I already have everything I need to complete the quilt. It’s been sitting in a bag for about four or five years and I’m happy to get it done. I will quilt it so it looks like stitch in the ditch and Shouldn’t take too long.

        1. Kathy in NY

          A flannel is perfect for snuggling with. I have some youth Cheater quilt panels so maybe I should pull them out and get them done while home. Stitch in the ditch always looks nice. Once again our stashes come in handy down the road with shops closed.

          1. Kay Crandall

            Kathy – I also decided to make a quick quilt for my sister in law because she needs comfort too. I am going to just do 10″ squares out of some of the beautiful Kaffe floral fabrics I have – something bright and pretty. It’s going to be a rough road for both of them. Yes, this is a good time to get some of those cheater panels and kits done (I bought a lot when my grandson was born four years ago, thinking I would be making lots of quilts for him) – by the time I get them done he will probably be in college and no longer interested in zoo animals and dinosaurs. LOL They will be good donation quilts. I am entertaining the idea that if Connie and Mary do the dirty dozen challenge again next year I will get started on all of the kits I have squirreled away.

          2. CountryThreads Post author

            Kay Crandall – we will DEFINITELY do the Dirty Dozen challenge again next year! I fell behind after surgery so will have to put them back in the rotation – ha!

    2. CountryThreads Post author

      Kay Crandall – so sad about your brother in law as well as your husband. It can’t be fun to go out three times a week for dialysis! Good thing you’re healthy – us, too, because we are also in that high risk group.
      I am not familiar with “Libby” but it sounds pretty cool! I have such a stack of books here and my Kindle is always full!
      Off to the sewing machine!

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