More Spring!

Love these reader photos of flowers and yards!

This is Diane’s (Squeak) grand dog, Finn, who just this week lost his battle with cancer. Our sympathies, Diane, to your son and his family, especially Owen. It’s hard to lose your dog.

A friend, Sue Bowers, offered to come and help me organize the patterns today.

Remember when this back hallway both sides floor to ceiling was full of boxes of patterns? And when we closed we got rid of what was left. When somebody requests an old pattern, I don’t know if I have a copy or not and what I did have left was here, there and everywhere. Now all remaining patterns are here and Sue helped me sort for almost the entire day and we didn’t even get finished. When I take a final inventory would you be willing to help me obtain patterns I might be missing to reach a full inventory by mailing me a copy of your pattern?

I can’t believe we were so stupid to let all those patterns go to the landfill, the shredder, the city of DesMoines garage sales – even the burn pile! We thought we were done. I can see I’m not done. Connie is done. I am not done.

I am now putting them in wire baskets in numerical order. I’ll see what I have and don’t have.

Here’s a chick update:

Look at those feathers! And those big guys with the combs just have to be roosters.

And here’s the latest on FluffyBun –

She is sleeping in this box in my sewing room! She’s had the calming collar on for 8 days and I swear it’s working. She is not spitting and hissing at anything that moves. She has moved herself into the sewing room and above the garage and up those funny steps to the little loft above my tv room. This might be too good to be true – I’ll believe it when I see it but if I see her wander through the kitchen, I’ll know it’s a new chapter for all of us.

Caitlin has been everywhere, hasn’t she? Loved the reception she got at Indiana – red carpet lined with players, coaches, and new fans. How can she be so calm, well spoken and composed? It’s the confidence in her game, I suppose. She doesn’t stammer and I’ve never really heard her be at a loss for words. How can she do those interviews so seemingly easy?

And she can walk in heels!

I just read tonight that the Olympics are on Peacock!

59 thoughts on “More Spring!

  1. Teresa from Port Coquitlam, BC

    My garden is the second picture with our Golden doodle Eddy and the third picture. As I told Mary that little 16” fence keeps Eddy out of the garden while the plants are poking through the soil. He’s so big he could just step over it. So glad he doesn’t know that! My plants start poking through the soil in February so I have to do my winter cleanup of all the leaves in December or January. Mary, it’s great you are getting the patterns organized. Love all the pictures. What happens with the chickens that are roosters? Enjoy the blog about a lot of things. Thank you

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Teresa – I hope there’s only a couple roosters. Alisa, who hatched the chicks, said I could return the roosters if I get too many. That will make me sad so I’m praying for just a couple – I think I can even identify the roosters at this point.

  2. Mary Johnston

    I have a lot of your books but will need to check my pattern drawers to see what I have. I am glad you’re not done….you both are so talented. My first book that I still love “On Behalf of Chickens”!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Mary Johnston – our beloved first book – the only one we wrote without a single mistake!!

  3. patti

    the outside pictures are wonderful. i love looking at them. do not have the talent or desire to do that. but so glad other people do. i enjoy without the work. diane, i’m so sorry about your grand-dog. it is always hard to lose a part of the family. i know i have a ton of your patterns but will take a bit (or more) to figure out which ones and get them in one place. those chicks are growing soo fast. they are cute. fluffy bun may have just found what makes her happy. i rejoice with her. she must have been under such an enormous stress that no one knew about. is good to see her resting peacefully. now the other kitties can be happy again. oh yeah, marie c – what is the name of that orange plant? i’ve never seen one. caitlin’s ease of talking about her sport is probably similar to our ease in talking about our craft. i never have trouble talking (or teaching) quilting with anyone. if you are confident in your ability, this stuff comes easier than one would think. more docs tomorrow so off to bed for me. patti in florida

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Patti – more dr. Appts. Ugh. I’m so sorry. You’re right – I could speak about quilting with no problems.

  4. Martha W in WY

    Mary, it looks like you have a variety of chicken breeds.
    The hen house will be very colorful. Everyone’s gardens are looking green. We’re in Branson and things are very green. The downside is that there is sneezing and our noses are dripping because of all the pollen in the air. We can still enjoy our trip though.

  5. Diane in Colorado

    I know I have several Country Threads patterns here!! Say the word and I’ll send you a list of what I have! You all got a big job tackled today!

    Love the spring pictures!!! We had snow all day and there’s more coming Saturday.

    Fluffybun looks very calm in her box! Sure seems like you may have hit on something with that calming collar! We tried one on Akira during thunderstorms and fireworks and it did seem to help her some.

    1. Jo in Wyoming

      Diane, we’re having snow too.
      When I worked in FOCO I would walk downtown when the blossom started falling off the apple trees. It felt like being in a snow globe. The perfume was delicate. It is a wonderful memory.

  6. Mary Howland

    Of course I’ll share any patterns I have. I love seeing the garden photos – would love to know the state so I would feel like I’m on vacation.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Mary – I was going to announce that very thing – I can’t move photos from file to blog – it will take hours so everybody should put location on photo. Wouldn’t that be great?

  7. Cindy K

    Nice flowerbeds. Don’t have many single patterns but I have several books. Too bad about the Olympics being on peacock-guess I’ll miss it.

  8. Mary Beth from Missouri

    Mary, seeing the shelving where the boxes of patterns were brings back wonderful memories of retreats and shopping for patterns on those very shelves. I have many of your patterns, including ones you clearanced out in the barn loft. I would be glad to send you a list of all the patterns I have, and if you need any of them, let me know.
    My husband and I are vacationing in the Redwood Forest in California for a few more days. Have a great night.

    Mary Beth from Missouri

  9. brendalynne1

    1-would have been happy to help with the organizing. I seem to be better at that than the creating these days.
    2-are the chicks a mixed variety or you had choices ? it will be very interesting watching them grow out of this awkward stage.
    3- it sounds as though Caitlin isnt just a basketball player but a wellrounded personable young woman. Isnt it a wonderful surprise when a super star turns out to be more than ???

  10. Carla

    I’m jealous! I would love sorting through those patterns to organize them, that’s right up my alley! Good news on Fluffybun! I can’t help but wonder why the measuring cups are in your sewing room though lol! No good outdoor pics in this yard yet, but my son planted all 8 trees and bushes I had ordered and I can’t wait to see how they grow! Blessings everyone!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Carla – I noticed the measuring cups in the photo, too – haha! The garage door is right there and I was returning the clean cups to the popcorn machine that’s in the garage. See? There’s such a perfect explanation, isn’t there?

    2. Mary Etherington Post author

      Carla – oh, I wish you were here! I hate this kind of work.

      1. Teresa from Port Coquitlam

        I wish I was there too. I love organizing. Honestly I could do that all day long and be in my happy place.

        1. Janet S

          Teresa, I’m with you. Organizing the patterns would be very relaxing. When I’m done with that, maybe Mary would let me bind one of her quilts.
          No outside work her in Minnesota today. Everything that isn’t covered is freezing. Crazy weather.

          1. Mary Etherington Post author

            Janet – uh, handing over my binding would be a no-brainer! Haha!! And I’m getting the patterns in order little by little but I just want to be done.

  11. Vicki Ibarra

    I love the yard pictures. The white flowering crab tree is gorgeous. I live in Iowa City and there is one street that I travel that has lots of flowering crabs on both side of the road in white, pink, and rose colors. For one week each year that is a favorite street as the blooms are so full. I would love to see Marie C’s irises when they are in bloom. Do you have a variety of colors? What are the yellow bloom vining plants on the fence? And everyone’s yard is so tidy! Love the greens.

  12. Kathy in western NY

    The white tree and flower bed with golf cart in background is my yard this past week. It changes so fast with wind blowing off blossoms on flowering trees. Rain has finally gotten us out of the drought we were in. I sure enjoy seeing all these outdoor photos as spring awakens. I love all the decorations people put in their yards to brighten their views too.
    I pulled out a UFO Give Us This Day Country Thread project and thought I really need to organize my patterns. I thought I would alphabetize them by names but should I put them by a number as I never paid attention to a number being on the pattern?

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Kathy – I have a chart matching pattern numbers to titles but you wouldn’t so I would arrange yours alphabetically.

      1. Kathy in NY

        Thanks Mary, I will do it alphabetically. I’m sure you’ll put a call out for the ones you will need to see if any of us have them. Sure glad I have some of these from long before I ever discovered your blog.

  13. DiNe, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

    Thanks for posting Finn, Mary. Owen told me he lost his best friend🥲. The chickens are so cute! All of the yards are beautiful. We had lots of Daffodils which are past now. The deer mow down most flowers, but the Irises and Amaryllises will be up soon I love that Fluffybun is doing better.

  14. Donna Jo

    Enjoying all the spring yard photos! Love the second photo of Eddy! He is quite the poser! Diane sorry to hear about your grand dog Finn. It’s so hard losing a pet. Glad the collar is working on Fluffybun! After seeing it recommended here, I ordered some for our cat. It’s only been on her a few days but I can see a difference. Yes Caitlin is everywhere! She’s just one of those people who can do it all. She would make a great announcer when she retires from .

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Donna Jo – I’ll be so anxious to hear if the collar works for you. I honestly think FB is acting better – more loving and calm. I’m so relieved – so far.

    2. Teresa from Port Coquitlam, BC

      Eddy loves to pose for the camera. Not sure why. As soon as I started taking pics of my garden he sat down like-ok I’m here- take my picture. He started that last summer.

  15. Barbara C.

    Would it be better for us to email you pattern numbers before sending you a copy of a pattern? I feel like you would just end up throwing the duplicates away.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Barbara C – absolutely! I don’t want to get 10 of the same. I’ll get it coordinated and when I’m ready I’ll post. It will take me a bit of time so don’t panic.

  16. Carmen M.

    So happy for Fluffybun, I hope she continues to be brave! Love all the outdoor pics, people are so creative!
    Would love to send a copy of any of your patterns just name what you are missing! Very sad to hear about Finn, poor Owen my heart goes out to him and his family!

    1. Diane and the gang

      Thanks, Carmen. Owen and family are missing him a lot. He was just the sweetest dog. 🥲

  17. Diana in Des Moines

    i will absolutely share my Country Threads patterns with you if you need. I have quite the collection.
    Lately I have been collecting the little $2 Villa Rosa patterns. Easy to store, and great for scrappy quilts. Also a good source of easy patterns for donations for our church when we have smaller pieces of fabric, but not usually yardage.
    Sewing with my friends tomorrow. The best day of the month!

    1. Kathy in western NY

      Diana, I’ve also collected quite a few of the $2 Villa Rosa patterns and wanted to make sure I kept a checklist for when I am out a quilt store as I have bought 2 of one before. Their site has a checklist. I keep my patterns card now in an oversized recipe box so they are alphabetical when I want one. Like you say, wonderful patterns. Even for large pieces you don’t want to cut up but showcase. Ebb Tide was recently shown somewhere made up with Caitlin Clark fabric. Have fun sewing with friends tomorrow.

  18. Sheryl Harrison

    Finn is beautiful! I’m so sorry for his family’s heartbreak.

    Every time you bring up the subject of patterns, I anxiously look for the garden shed quilt that was in the Oh, Susannah book. Hopefully it is in your inventory.

    I just checked the Country Threads patterns I have. I bought Be Still and made it right away in 2020 so I’m sure that is a pattern you still have. I have Prairie & Pine #613 and Old Glory Farm #449. I never made those because I was working and busy with family and didn’t get a lot of quilting time but now these are pulled out, they are on my “to do” list.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Sheryl – I think I know where Garden Shed is – I’ll look today and let you know. I hope I haven’t moved it because then I probably won’t find it! Ugh

  19. Debbie Roberts

    Hi Mary:

    I attended your “closing” sale and have many of your patterns that you were GIIVING AWAY FREE. Once you know which patterns you are missing, I would be glad so copy the patterns if I have any of the ones you need.

    Thanks for the blog. Love reading it EVERY DAY!
    Debbie in Iowa

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Debbie Roberts – oh, that’s good to know! Yes, Sue and I talked about when we gave them away and once again I just groaned. I really do need a complete set, don’t I?

  20. Sheryl Harrison

    sorry for another comment. i forgot to check “notify me of follow up comments.”

  21. Marie C

    Patti, the orange flower is a fritillary. It’s about 2.5 feet tall. It’s an interesting looking flower. Vicki Ibarra I’ll send in pictures of my irises when they bloom. I have many more than in the picture. I have mostly purple yellow and mauves. I started with a flat full from my grandma years ago. They really multiply. Beautiful pictures today

  22. Margie from Ohio

    Enjoyed the pictures. Our yard is pretty plain. I put out a few solar lights. We mow our yard, but it is nothing compared to my mother in laws. I usually dread even thinking about mowing it, especially when it gets in the high 80s and 90s. Sorry about Finn. Never easy to lose a member of the family. The orange flower shown, my mother in law calls popes crown. I looked up what it was called and yep, that is it. Not sure why she calls it that. So glad you have help getting those patterns arranged. Has to be a job.

  23. Hank's Mom

    What?? Summer Olympics on Peacock?? That makes me sad and mad. What is wrong with current TV? It’s not like the 3 free stations, CBS, ABC, and NBC have anything wonderful to watch in the summer months. Heck a lot of the series on these stations just released their first episodes in March and April, when they should have started in Sept-Oct.

    I’m sure it’s about the all mighty dollar and Peacock was willing to pay more than the ‘free’ channels could. We love the Olympics but I’m not going to pay for Peacock just to watch them.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Hank’s Mom – doesn’t that just piss you off? It does me because I love the Olympics and I will either have to get Peacock or miss them all. I hate to play their game but protesting will make me miss it all. How’s Little Hank? I’ve had a horribly busy week so haven’t seen him. I will message you.

  24. Terri Mulinix

    I have a lot of your patterns. If there is some I have that you need I would love to send you copies.

  25. Kathryn in IL

    Hi Mary, We were flipping through the channels last night and CBS, NBC and ABC all had crime shows. So sad… if they aren’t better with their programming they won’t be around before long . I wonder if streaming will replace the “ basic cable” that started not that many years ago?

    1. Janet S

      Kathryn, Yes, I think streaming will overtake basic cable. Just now I am in the process of switching from cable. Cable also doesn’t have anything to watch – it’s all sales programs. There again all they’re interested in is money. For the near future it will be streaming until another something comes along.

  26. Gloria from CC

    So sorry that Diane’s grand dog passed away. Such a sad time for the family and the pain doesn’t go away for a long time.
    Garden pictures are fun to look at. It’s so windy here today that it’s best to stay inside. I had to cover some plants last night because of the frost this morning. Have a great weekend everyone.

    1. Diane, Squeak, Buddy

      Thanks, Gloria. Owen is muddling through. We are all sad, but it helps to know others understand.

  27. Dee from Shell Rock

    Well, if it’s Peacock, not me. No streaming services for me, I don’t watch tv that way. Love the pictures. I have some of your patterns too. send a list of what you need.

  28. Pat in AZ

    I love the Olympics but I’m bullheaded enough that I will not pay a ransom to watch. I’ll just watch highlights later.
    The rescued pups break my heart. I just don’t understand how anyone can treat an animal like that and still sleep at night. If I recall correctly, the rescue Jo Kramer volunteers with also has a recurring problem with Amish breeders neglecting their dogs.
    So glad to hear the collar is helping FB. I know it was terrible for you and the other cats and probably for FB also.
    Eddy is so cute and what a very good boy. If my dogs behaved like that it would just mean they thought there might be something in it for them!
    I’m really loving the yard pictures. I miss the spring flowering season of the Pacific Nw. The blooming cacti just aren’t the same . Love the little retaining wall in the first picture. So cute
    Take care
    Pat in ridiculously hot already AZ (94)

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Pat – yes, you’re right – Jo fosters for a rescue group that accepts pups mostly from the Amish and Mennonite breeders who are notoriously bad about treating animals kindly. They’re just a cash crop to them. I honestly can’t stand to think about it.

  29. Linda in Estherville

    I guess streaming tv is difficult if you do not have a smart tv and internet service. However, it is a blessing for those of us who had to rely on satellite,or,cable tv for any tv stations. We were paying $260 for our satellite. Which included service in our motor home (winter home). No, we could not even recieve tv thru Verizon…too many beautiful trees on my hill…and an antennae would not bring in our closet tv station. With our current service we could even watch all of our local Iowa/southDakota news in Arizona.

    I wonder how much your friend would charge to come in and organize all my sewing patterns, magazines, books which covers fashionsewing, knitting, crocheting from the 60’s, and create a database on my computer including the embroidery files from 2001 and all the above. Maybe organize yarn, fabrics and whatever else! Wish I could find my 60’s lingerie patterns from classes I took in Iowa Falls. Where does one buy a slip now…..

    I have one bulb plant with a couple blooms….maybe a white daffodil. And, we planted cherry trees, just so I could inhale the aroma. They make great bird food….I love cherry pies, but don’t have the patience to pit them!

  30. Dorothy from Chicago

    Well there goes the Olympics! Not going to pay to watch. So sad. On a happier note… love the chickens. They are so darned cute! I’m sure Mary between all of us we will be able to make copies of all your missing patterns

  31. Leah Montgomery

    I attended a retreat with you quite a few years ago and you gave anyone who wanted them a bunch of your patterns. Maybe after you closed the shop. I am happy to send you any of the patterns I have that you are missing.

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