October 1

And it’s the middle of the night and I can’t sleep and it’s just too uncomfortable to lay there so I got up – I’ll bet I can find something to do!  Read on to find out what our next Dirty Dozen Number is for October.


Our Dirty Dozen Number for October is Number Seven.  Reed drew the number and this month I love my project!  I can’t wait to wrk on it – I started a strip improv project that has many units already joined so now all I have to do is put it together.

And now I will tell you what Reed is working on – even though we’ve hardly sewed since school started because he has homework this year.  Reed’s mom, Karla, is pregnant with another couple’s baby!    She is a gestational carrier for a couple originally from Garner who cannot  have their own children but they can supply the egg, the sperm and thus the fertilized egg to be implanted into Karla’s uterus.  This special baby girl will be born by C-section on January 3, 2020.

Reed is making a quilt for the new baby with 30’s fabrics.  I had him make several blocks using 2-1/2” squares but he preferred the look  of 1-1/2” squares meaning lots of sewing.  I hope he doesn’t regret his decision.

Isn’t this exciting news and isn’t this a lesson in compassion for Reed and his siblings?  Could there be a more exquisite “gift”?  And even though Karla is doing the “heavy” work, it’s the whole family who is making this happen.  Everybody will be making sacrifices to help in so many ways and none more important than Kevin, Reed’s dad.  As someone who experienced primary infertility, I can only look back with regret that someone couldn’t do this for me.  I am thrilled for these new parents as well as both sets of grandparents who live in the Garner community.  I’ll keep you posted on Reed’s special quilt for a special baby girl.

71 thoughts on “October 1

  1. Jan VanDeWalle

    6 ads and no X to close them, all but one are Bear Creek quilting company. It is wonderful that someone can carry a baby for another, who can’t Blessings to both families. Prayers for a healthy baby.
    Think I need to try and sleep now
    Jan in Oregon

  2. Karla T

    Lol— I am up not sleeping too this am! Must be something in the air?? I am excited with my #7 to finish too. What a wonderful story of Reed’s family. and i LOVE the quilt Reed is making, and kudos to him for going for the smaller pieces!

  3. Lori

    I’m up too.
    Sorry you never had your own children. But you must know how special you are to Reed and many others.
    What a gift Reed’s parents are giving to that couple..

    Reed is doing great with those small pieces.

  4. Jean

    WOW. just wow. Reed’s mom must be an amazing person! God bless that woman! Nice to see Reed again after such a long absence.

    1. Sharon Lowy

      Hey Reed! What wonderful neighbors you have, Mary. I can’t imagine what Reed’s mom and family are doing for that family…so special and selfless.

  5. Mrs. Goodneedle

    What a kind and loving gift from Reed for the baby, yes; but what kind and parents and friends like you as examples of God’s love in Reed’s life! #7 it is!! (Side note: I love the vintage trays you use to carry pieces to the machine!)

  6. Marsha from Kansas

    I’m up, too, and can’t sleep. Finally made it to my LQS and got the binding fabric for my September project so hope to finish it up in a day or two. Reed’s family is so special. What better gift to give someone than a precious human life! We can tell Reed is learning the values taught by his family by making a quilt for the baby. This will be such a heartwarming story to follow through into the new year! Wishing good health to Mom and Baby.

    Mary, I’m glad you like this month’s project since you didn’t care for the one last month. It balances out. I like mine this month, putting binding, sleeve, and label on my Bonnie Hunter 2018 Mystery Quilt.

    So sorry for the baby chick. I feel even more for the poor mother.

    Happy October – cooler weather. Our Central Kansas Shop Hop is this weekend. If anybody is in the area, it is a really fun happening. Grand prize is a Singer Featherweight!

  7. Susan Sundermeyer

    Mary, I call this an unbroken circle of Blessings, of which you are a part of!

  8. Karen Miller

    Reed’s family is one of compassion for others in giving this special gift to the family in their need. It takes someone very compassionate and generous to do this.
    #7…putting together Dresden Plate blocks that my late mother pieced probably 40 years ago. I appliquéd them to the background fabric a few years ago and it is now time to finish it up. Sometimes we just need that extra push to get things done. Thanks for the push! LOL
    Mary, I hope you are able to get some rest today to make up for the restless night.

  9. Paula Philpot

    So happy for both families . I just love Reed, can’t wait to see his quilt. Paula in kY

  10. Rita In Iowa

    What a wonderful family Reed has, such a wonderful gift to give of oneself. I can’t believe that Reed is sewing 1 1/2 “ pieces. Such patience he has. Hope to work on my Franks today. Spent part of my day yesterday working outside. Will probably be an inside day today and tomorrow with all the rain were supposed to get.

  11. Beth Laverty

    Love to hear about Reed and especially this VERY special gift he is making. And his very special mom. Thanks for sharing this story.

  12. Carol at Pin Oak Quilting

    What a miracle for the couple whose baby girl will be so blessed to have a community praying for her all the way through life! I had years and years of infertility and procedures, etc., and finally did have two boys. The hardest years of my life. My sister was thinking of carrying for me but then, I had my miracle happen. For those who get pregnant with ease, it’s difficult to realize the pain of infertility. I would not wish it on anyone.

    Reed’s blocks are perfectly pieced! I enlarged the photo. wow! Way to go, Mary… you’re a great teacher, and Reed is unbelievable to choose to go so tiny. And to gift the baby, wonderful! What a big heart that family shares.

  13. Donna L Petersen

    What an incredible gift…it takes a very special person & family for this to happen…God Blessing to them.

    Donna in Wis

  14. Katherine Gourley

    Hi Mary,

    I did not sleep at all last night either. I had a flu shot yesterday and had flu-like muscle pains all night. What a wonderful mother Reed has and he is just wonderful with his quilting. I admire that young man for thinking of the baby by making a quilt. I had a number of adds to close today — pennies in the jar!

  15. Kathy in western NY

    Such a heartwarming story to read first thing to start a day. It makes you realize how many families are blessed by this generosity. What a happy day in your town when that beautiful baby arrives.
    Well Reed…..you are braver than me piecing 1 1/2” squares together! And the blocks look so perfect. I continue to cut that size from my scraps but boy I need to be on my last piece of fabric to use them in a project! I think the welcome home baby quilt will be gorgeous with reproduction fabrics.

  16. Pat Smith

    That is a really wonderful story and an unbelievable gift Karla and her family are giving to the couple unable to carry their own babies. I know because that was my case too in the years before the great infertility work was done and before there were such things as gestational carriers. We were so fortunate to adopt our two children, one right from the hospital as a four day old infant and the other as a 1 year old from an orphanage in Hong Kong where we were living at the time. Both girls are grown with careers of their own now. I love the openness of Reed’s family and the community of Garner in such a loving project. Karla is a very special and loving person.

  17. Anonymous

    Closed the ads I could and then skimmed a few comments after reading the blog. The time stamp caught my eye. What was happeniylast night between 3:30 and 6 eastern daylight time? Awake here too. Dozed some more after alarm rang.
    Reeds’s quilt will be beautiful and such a special quilt.
    Blessings of health, and peace to all.

  18. Sue from Duluth MN

    The misconception of pregnancy being is “easy”, and the utter fallacy that ANY woman can have a child is very upsetting to me. The difficulty of getting pregnant, and delivering a healthy infant has so many pitfalls but most people do not so have that mindset. The beautiful gift of this story you gave us this morning certainly shows there are still miracles happening in this mixed up world. Blessings to all involved with this wonderful adventure. Truly a good way to start the day, thank you Mary! Needless to say, Reed is an awesome young man that has had many positive influences and darn cute on top of all of it. Blessings to all!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Yes, Sue, did you see that one of the grandmas left a comment? This is such a special story that I was anxious to tell you all and it does touch my heart. When I first learned of this, I hugged Karla and told her that I was so proud of her. It’s such a miracle it’s hard to believe!

  19. Kris in Naperville

    I just knew a “Reed” story would be wonderful… and I’m not disappointed. Going to go see what my #7 is…

  20. Linda

    A very special family & young man. This will be a wonderful story for us.
    Love keeping up with all that you have going on.
    Quilty hugs, Linda

  21. mary hawk

    Oh Mary. What a blessing for that family but it must touch such a tender spot in you. You would have been a wonderful and fun momma bear! Glad you have Reed to share with.
    It is a downpour here.

  22. Launa

    Morning Mary, Nice to close 3 ads and see Reed’s baby quilt in progress. What a wonderful gift of love Karla is doing for a couple! God bless all!
    On the lighter side I came out to have my 6am mug of tea only to discover two snoozing Minnesota young Bow Hunters asleep in both recliners. Since our temperatures dipped below 30o last night it was too cold 🥶 to have them sleeping in their pick up last night. Bow hunting for Elk n Deer ended late yesterday thankfully!
    I sewed more 31/2” Churns yesterday for Sheryl Johnson’s Dashing Thru the Snow sew along! Now to check #7 when I find my DD list!

  23. Mary Neitzel

    It is a very generous thing Reed’s mom and family are doing. I too was unable to have children. It is so touching to hear they are doing this. Thank you for sharing! I look forward to seeing Reeds quilt he is making for this special little girl!

  24. Nancy A Poole

    Can’t sleep well the last couple nights. Weather changed. Lay awake thinking of what to do with piles of scraps. Love seeing your posts and close all the ads I can. Should I clean house or look at my stash?

  25. Sue in Marion, IN

    How wonderful the gift Reed’s family is giving to another family! We were in infertility treatment for several years…I finally had our daughter after a GIFT procedure. When she was 3 we did it again…no dice. We decided we were happy to her be an only child. A year later at almost 40 I thought I was experiencing early menopause…turned out to be a boy! Katie will be 29 in a couple of weeks and Evan is 25 and just started medical school. We are “geezer parents” but it keeps us young. God bless both families!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Sue! Your story gave me goosebumps! You are entitled to be geezer parents – haha!

  26. MarleneT in upstate NY

    Hi Mary, I had the sleepless night a few days ago, drives me crazy. Thanks for getting up so early and posting such wonderful pictures of Reed. He is something else, working on those small pieces. I have made many Jo Morton quilts that require tiny blocks. It is so cool when you see them emerge into a beautiful quilt. You can thank Reed for picking our numbers and getting us all in gear to finish up those old projects. That quilt he is making is a wonderful thing to do for the new baby. What a way for his family and all of you to start the new year. My #7 is a small quilt with a pumpkin in the middle, was already layered but needs to be pinned and quilted, it’s been hanging around in a pile with the others for about 5 years. Hope to get it done for this fall season. You have permission to grab a nap later!

  27. Sherry Whalen

    Greetings from rainy SE MN –

    What a wonderful story about Reed’s family and their gift to the other family! I love Reed’s little blocks – they are so cute. Reed is a fearless quilter!! And I think he is a good number picker too – #7 REALLY needs to get done at my house. It is Safe Haven, a former Thimbleberries BOM that I bought as a kit from Pine Needles when it was still located in Cresco. I’ve had the top done for several years, I have even had it layered – back, wool batting, and top for at least 2 years, just waiting for me to decide how I want to quilt it. Will October 2019 be that time?!? I hope so! I guess it is an all day rain event today, time for breakfast and time to get started on it!!!

  28. Jackie Baumhauer

    Love the colors in Reed’s quilt. He looks like he could be your grandson!
    I agree you would have been such a terrific Mom.

  29. MartyCae

    Thanks for sharing the very special story. And bless Reed’s heart to make the new baby a quilt.
    And I love to see all the things you and Reed are working on. You are a very special friend.

  30. Connie McGrew

    Seems to be many of us with insomnia last night…me too. Thanks for sharing the wonderful news of the special baby on the way. God bless both families! I couldn’t help but notice Reed’s red hoodie sweatshirt. The print of the fabric looks alot like patchwork!!

  31. Nancy TD

    I was up early too. Rainy next 2 days. Perfect for a new project. #7 will get started today. Nice to see Reed working on a quilt and for someone so special. Best wishes to both families.

  32. Diane, Squeak's Mom

    Wow! What a loving gift from Reed’s Mom and family. Blessings on all of them.
    Up at 4:30 here, too. Odd so many of us were up!
    I will go look for my #7. Thanks, Mary.

  33. Michele

    As one of the Grandmothers: It is truly a miracle and a very special story. I tear up every time I tell the story. So many people prayed over this and for this, many I may never know. And Karla and Kevin went into this looking at God for the answers. And the only way this all happened was with God’s help. This gift is the biggest gift anyone could give or receive. We are all truly blessed and counting the days until January!

    Thank you Mary for sharing the story. Reed has made me promise I won’t tell the parents to be of his special gift. Can’t wait to see him present it to the baby.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      I didn’t imagine the parents to be were blog readers so I thought it was safe to show what he’s doing. He’s got lots of sewing to do this fall! Yikes! That baby will be here before we know it!

  34. Kim LeMere

    How exciting for the families involved. Love wins!
    Reeds quilt will be a gift of love.

  35. Judy A

    A most heartwarming post for today! Goose-bump reading 🙂 Praying for rich blessings for all.

  36. Linda Baker

    I was so glad to see a post from Country Threads today. Haven’t seen one since the “Test” post on Sept 10 or 11! And believe me, I’ve been checking every day. I was praying that nothing bad had happened to you or your family, so seeing a post this morning is a big relief. Welcome back, Mary!

    1. Ruth

      Linda, the same thing happened to me! I couldn’t see anything from Country Threads for several days. Sort of thought that since I check on the blog every day instead of “following” that I was cut off forever. Nope. It just showed up back on my browser all of a sudden. Just think of all the back posts you can now read!

  37. Diane Bauer

    I think, too, that you would have been an amazing Mom, Mary. I’m sorry you struggled with infertility. I cannot imagine how hard that was for you. What an incredible blessing Reed’s family is giving this family. Reed has a big and generous heart. I can’t say I’m surprised to hear he has decided to gift his next quilt to this special baby girl! It will be fun to follow as this story unfolds!

    I had a very restless night as well. Interesting to hear how many of us had trouble sleeping, especially that Katherine also had a flu shot yesterday, as I did. And I multiplied it by also getting a shingles vaccine. They warned me flu/cold symptoms were common side effects, along with arm soreness and headache. I had the arm ache before I went to bed, and the rest showed up through the night. Hoping all will settle down through the day today!

    It’s raining here in Windsor today so feels like a good sewing day! The weatherman just said today will be the coolest day since May! Fall is in the air!!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      It was almost 90 here yesterday and today it’s raining and cooler and I’m glad – oh, did I really say that? Yes, a good sewing day or reading a book!

      1. Diane Bauer

        I love the cooler weather but am certainly not ready to start shoveling snow yet! I want to sit next to a fire, wrapped in a quilt, with a good book. That sounds fabulous!

  38. Marian Stever

    Reed’s project will have a special look to it. I have a bunch of really vintage fabrics that I would like to do something special with. Gave me an idea, Reed! Congratulations to Reed’s family experiencing Karla being a surrogate mother. The ultimate gift, I’m sure.
    Weather is gloomy, think I will sew with lots of lights on! No ads today. Arggh!

  39. Barb

    Wish someone could do this for my son and daughter in law. They have had no luck with several IVF attempts. Heartbreaking 😢

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      When I was in my 30’s and having every test imaginable, IVF was just starting. It wasn’t covered by insurance and was only 20% successful and each try was $10,000. It just wasn’t affordable but of course that was 40 years ago. It still is a raw stab in my heart so I understand what your kids are going through. Might you inquire about a carrier in your area?

      1. Barb

        I’ve not talked to them about using a surrogate….though I’m sure it has crossed their minds as has adoption and donor eggs. The last attempt was the heart breaker as she had a scan and saw the heart beat then miscarried that weekend. Think my son said IVF was only about 50% successful even now. Also still very expensive.

  40. Dale

    I am so glad to see Reed again. What a special gift for
    A special baby. Blessings to all.

  41. Caryn Goulden

    So good to see Reed again! Looking forward to seeing his quilt. Karla is a great person to give such a wonderful gift. 🌷💓
    Try to get some rest today. Seven ads closed

  42. Charlotte S.

    What a wonderful story from such a special family!! Praying for an easy pregnancy and healthy baby. Love Reed’s choice for the baby quilt. He has a great teacher. Yay for #7. It’s probably one of my oldest UFOs.

  43. Betty Klosterman

    Yesterday was Project Warmth work day to make quilts for charity. It was gloomy and rainy, but we didn’t mind it. Lots of wonderful quilts being made plus food and companionship. One quilter is going into assisted living and gave all her fabrics, etc to us so after quilting everybody was busy sorting. They will NOT go to waste. We are getting some younger members, too.
    Reed, I love the little 3″ completed 9 patch blocks. It does take a lot of them, but well worth the effort. That little baby will grow up with your quilt especially made by you, her “brother in vetro?”
    Mary, you didn’t get to be a mother, but you are a great Gramma. They don’t need to be “blood relatives,” just good friends who have the time and knowledge to work with the kids teaching them all of the little extras of life. A kid can never have too many Grammas!
    AND several of the ladies had the feed sack bags for their stuff. They are very useful. I noticed they were rather noisy..
    It is rainy/gloomy today and tomorrow will have snow in the hills, maybe town, too. That’s the way it goes!
    Betty in Rapid City

  44. Pam in NC

    Pure LOVE and grace…..just what our blessed Lord wants from us. I’m in awe of this family. Blessings to you too, Mary!

  45. Evelyn

    Thanks for a lovely story. And look at Reed. I, too, love sewing with 1-1/2″ squares. Have made two quilts with them and almost finished with a third. Keep going, young man. It’s going to look fabulous!

  46. Becky from IA/TX

    What a wonderful story about Reed and his family. The quilt that Reed is making will be wonderful….can’t wait to see the finished product!!! So sorry Mary for your story…..blessing to you, Mary, and all you do for your friends and other families!

  47. Jessica in FL

    Such a beautiful act of love & compassion! I love that Reed is making a quilt for the baby, that’s going to be a precious keepsake. I can’t wait to see updates on it. Thank you for sharing.

  48. Liz Schrader

    So nice to see Reed again! What a handsome and talented young man. May Gods blessings be with his very special parents to give this couple a wonderful miracle. My granddaughter and her husband (both nurses) had a beautiful baby boy after the second IVF treatment in July.Thank you for your very interesting daily blog Mary. I have photos ready to send you.

  49. Marcia

    What an amazing story of selfless compassion you have shared! Reed obviously comes from a very strong, caring family. No wonder he has adopted you into his life!
    (Personally, I think I could benefit on a lesson in precision piecing from Reed!)

  50. Kate

    When my daughter was having trouble getting pregnant I told her I would gladly carry a baby for them if I were able. Her sister-in-law also offered. I think carrying a baby for someone is truly a blessing. I don’t know if it would be hard to give it up, but if you know the parents and know how happy it would make them, it would not be a hard decision By the way, my daughter ended up having two boys of her own.

  51. the other Angie

    Hearing from the Grandmother, knowing the wonderful thing Reed’s parents are doing for that family and having seen Reed for quite some time now, it all comes together and makes perfect sense. What an amazing family. God is good.

  52. Joyce from NY

    Such a nice story about Reed & his family, a wonderful thing to do.
    I too could not sleep last night, I have trouble with restless legs & last night was especially bad, it drives me crazy!
    Reed is such a handsome boy, you are lucky to have each other.
    88 degrees here in Upstate NY today. This evening I went to see 2 grandsons play soccer & 2 granddaughters do cross country at our home school. Such a nice evening to watch, so proud of my grandkids .

  53. Nikki M in Tx

    Karla’s story brings tears to my eyes & joy to my heart.She will definitely be in my prayers for the well being of her & this special baby. Reed is also a special person for his giving spirit. If the world had more people like this entire family what a wonderful place it would be.

  54. Janice Hebert

    What an amazing family! Thank you for sharing this with us, Mary. Reed is so handsome, so intent on getting those seams just right! I love that he’s making this quilt for the baby, such a sweet gift. I have some 30’s fabric, maybe I’ll make a doll quilt with tiny squares… but, I have to check to see what my number 7 is first! Hope you sleep better tonight Mary! Jan in MA

  55. Kate Schloemer

    God certainly is blessing these families with a child. There is no greater gift.

  56. Beth T.

    What a beautiful story. It’s pretty clear why Reed is turning out to be such an outstanding person: look at the loving examples he has and all of the people who love him and encourage him, and he is passing that along. I’m sure that is true of his sisters as well. Life can be very rich that way, and this new baby is already blessed. Thank you for sharing a story that touched my heart.

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