Oh, My Aching Back! 3-31-2020

I knew this would be how it would go the minute we got some nice weather – I overworked and knew it but after another nice day today it’s going to rain for 3 days. So I just kept working. Took quite a few painkillers so I could get out again today. But first I’ll show you the biggest job we finished yesterday – the hydrangeas in front of the shop!

Here’s the “before” picture – last fall I had my first knee replacement surgery and this did not get cut back so it was a bigger job than ever before.

Not perfect but good enough!

If only I had some lily bulbs to plant in this spot!

I put the picture of Chicklet and his gal pal on Instagram. Look for etheringtonmary- I can’t figure out how to send you a link – duh – sorry!

Some finishes – we’ve all got time to catch up, don’t we?

And my #6 in progress – an improv quilt needing more pieces – still working.

Look at all these projects – one per box – next year’s Dirty Dozen!

I’m going to write up this little blue plaid quilt as a pattern for those of you wanting to order it – just too many drawings and measurements to post on blog.

Hazel was outside with us the whole day yesterday which she is not used to – just like us, she overdid her activity and she needed a bath. After a bath we always play “towel” – I thinks that’s the only reason she allows me to bathe her – knowing what’s coming next!

She was so tired last night she was nearly sick – couldn’t eat, shivering and wanting a lap to sit on. I understand.

Tomorrow I will draw the April number for the Dirty Dozen game! We will start again in July for any of you who want to join us. I think it’s been very successful – for me, too.

Is anybody besides me anxious to visit the nurseries for bedding plants? I’m lining up my pots now!

Someone asked about this gate leg table –

It belonged to my Aunt Charlotte who painted it another coat of orange every spring! I had it stripped and put a white grain stain on it but now I think I’d like to have it painted. I hate to paint tho’ so there it sits.

Time to head outside – tomorrow we’ll rest.

But every day remember – BE STILL.

60 thoughts on “Oh, My Aching Back! 3-31-2020

  1. Diane and Squeak

    No ads today, only yellow boxes which is rare for me. I will try later in the day. You did a whale of a job yesterday. Time to rest up that leg and back!! It is so much fun to see the finished Dirty Dozens. Is the last one from Sandie in CA one of your patterns? It looks familiar.

    Hazel is so cute with her towel. Squeak likes to play “string” but she’s had only one bath in her life.

    Hang in there, Mary, it’ll be warmer soon and time to plant:) It’s 43 now in Central Ohio.

  2. Teresa

    Mary, no Ads today. I’d love a pattern for your men’s shirts quilt, I love that one.

    Sandie from CA, would you share what your tulip quilt pattern is please, love that one too!

  3. Sue in Oregon

    I am so glad you are going to make a pattern of the little blue shirt quilt. Add me to the list.
    Love all the finishes shown today.
    Maybe today you, Rick and Hazel could take a rest after lunch and then go back out for a while?? I would hate to think of you down in the back, Mary. Go slow. Is that possible? lol
    Closed an ad. Maybe another one later, if they put up a different one.
    It is still raining here in the west, but the temps are a little higher. Last day of March is going out like a Lion.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Sue in Oregon – I’ve left you two messages and you have not answered either one!!!

  4. Cheryl

    No ads today. Self quarantined. Cleaned the house, make bread and soup, sew and read. The grocery store once. Thank goodness for my fabric stash and e-reader! Books since January

    Ocean’s Apart – Kingsbury
    Touched By Fire – Watts
    Rainy Day Sisters – Hewitt
    Things You Save in a Fire – Center
    Her Last Promise – Hughes
    The Secrets of the Notebook – Haas
    Everyone is Beautiful – Center
    The Bright Side of Disaster – Center
    Lady Clementine – Benedict
    On Wings of the Morning – Bostwick
    Love Starts with Elle Hauck
    The Same Sky – Ward
    The Writing Desk – Hauck
    The Wedding Shop – Hauck
    The Wedding Chapel – Hauck
    The Secret Orphan – Peters
    A Brush With Love – Hauck
    Black and Blue – Quindlen
    All the Ways We Said Goodbye – Willig, Williams, White
    The Orphan Thief – Peters
    The Child on Platform One – Thompson
    The Lost Wife – Richman
    High as the Heavens – Breslin
    Not By Sight – Breslin
    For Such a Time – Breslin
    Far Side of the Sea – Breslin
    Sarah’s Key – de Rosnay
    Through Waters Deep – Sundlin
    To the Farthest Shores – Camden
    The Sea Before Us – Sundlin
    The Orphan House – Bennett
    The Things We Cannot Say – Rimmer
    The Italian Villa – Sacerdoti
    Meet Me in Monaco – Gaynor
    The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter – Gaynor
    The Promise – Weisgarber

  5. Kaye Kingsbury

    Count me in for the blue shirts pattern. It’s exactly what I’ve been looking for. You’re the best!

    1. Judy Gnade

      Hello from Maryland where it seems to rain daily and we are under orders to stay at home. Our daffodils, flowering trees and forsythia are lovely. I am trying to sort & scan pictures. What a job! I need to go back to piecing instead. Looking forward to buying the little shirt quilt pattern. In awe of your speed, Mary! Judy

  6. Jean Elliott

    Love that little quilt..I’ll be ordering that pattern! Take it easy…you don’t need to injure yourself. I’m sure you are already way ahead of most people getting ready for spring!

  7. Nikki M

    Not raining but cloudy & chill in air here. Still working on the UFO of broken lone star…. beginning to like it again. Love the journal/book covers….I am going to gleem this idea for gifts..Thank you for idea Vicki in Seattle. Mary, I like the improv quilt, I bet made improv quilts & always called them one of a kind…oh dear another idea…
    I said wouldn’t do hanging baskets this year but yearning for colorful plants on porch . Think will make fried cabbage with last of head cabbage in fridge & add Jim Dean sausage patty to it for lunch/ brunch since have not fixed breakfast yet. Scheduled myself for 2 hours of barn duty today…(am determined to complete organizing/ cleaning out barn by end of May…been working on it little bit at a time . Still emotionally hard task.
    Stay safe..
    Stay corona free

    1. Vicki in Seattle

      Nikki, glad you like the journal covers. My mother and aunts did such beautiful needlework and I thought this would be a way to share a small touch of it with the children and grandchildren. Wishing you the best as you clean out the barn and deal with all the memories. Stay well. Vicki in Seattle💙

    2. CountryThreads Post author

      Nikki M – you sound a lot like me – you could have some help with that barn cleaning but won’t accept it. Hmmmmm…….. we have not started cleaning ours yet – another 6 weeks for sure.

  8. Kay Schleusner

    I hear you I could barely get back up off floor after being outside yesterday. Yes I have a order to put in at Bluestone Perennials.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Kay Schleusner – I was really in lots of pain during the evening I took my pain killers before bed and even two Tylenol about 4 am and I got up feeling pretty wonderful – really! I’m going to do the same tonight!

  9. Jo in Wyoming

    Great post today. Yard work is never ending. I’m pairing down to baskets, gravel and grass. The park is a beautiful place to see all the flowers without all the work!
    I love the shallow storage containers. I’ve kept my ufo’s in plastic bags. The slip and slide all over, so, when we can , I’m getting some of your storage boxes.
    The dd’s today are just grand. Love seeing everybody’s creativity.

    1. Betty Klosterman

      I, too, like to put projects in plastic bags. When filled, I lay the bag on the table, then I lay my chest on the bag and get all of the air out and closing the zip lock. Nothing inside is going to slide around and you aren’t storing air.

    2. Bobbie

      You can buy those storage boxes at Costco they are a set about 5-6 for $10 or maybe a little more cheaper than at Joanne’s
      Or a quilt shop or Walmart for about $5. Each. Just help save you a little money for fabric lol.

      1. CountryThreads Post author

        Bobbie – I bought mine at Target – they were more $ than that for sure.

    3. CountryThreads Post author

      Jo in Wyoming. Here’s the thing – I haven’t even opened up those shallow boxes yet so I don’t know what’s in them! A surprise awaits!!

  10. Joann

    My husband saved a table just like that from the junk pile, and refinished it. It was one of the few antiques that made the move to our retirement home up north. We drastically downsized, and sold most of our stuff. Stay well. Be still.

  11. Liz Schrader

    Mary, you are working to hard with those new knees. I couldn’t do it but I am older than you. Some beautiful pictures today. I would be interested in the shirt pattern. Although I have a lot of other patterns to work on. I have been trying to get out and walk the dog on days when it is not raining! And working on the baby quilt for Flynn. Stay safe.

  12. Nancy

    What is that wonderful quilt on the wall behind the gate leg table? It’s really fun. I’m in the Chicago area. Too wet to get in the garden yet. I’ve been cutting loads of 5” squares of various reds and then neutrals to finish 2 twin quilts. When I started this project, I cut too many blocks so I had to make a second quilt. Plan to use them in Michigan at our summer home.

    1. Carol at Pin Oak Quilting

      Gypsy’s Wife by Jen Kingswell… I love everything it too, have the pattern do not know where to begin!

    2. CountryThreads Post author

      Nancy – the quilt behind the gate leg table is Gypsy Wife by Jen Kingwell

  13. Deb Harrison

    Hope your back heals well inside tomorrow! I will want to blue plaid pattern….and if your wooden counter is missing, it is in my kitchen as an island!

    Mask city as soon as I get home. I still have my father’s old green one.

  14. Sandy

    It is snowing at my house in Eastern Washington as I write this. No yard work for us yet. Too much rain and wind, too chilly. Definitely staying home a lot. Doing my grocery shopping by parking lot pickup to avoid going into the store. My vet is literally doing curbside drop off and pickup. Go there, call, they come out, get my dog, take her in and check her out, call with recommendation, then deliver her back to the car with meds and treats. It is all about staying safe.

    Getting in lots of cooking, some baking, some cleaning, working from home via laptop, a jig saw puzzle, and, of course, some cutting and piecing. How, in real life, have I had time to do my 40 hour a week job??

    Thank you, Mary, for your stories, pictures, insights, and inspiration. We appreciate you.

  15. Judy

    Are the quilts on the side of your shop “barn quilts” (painted on plywood and hung). They almost look like fabric. How were they made and hung? We are trying to organize a barn quilt trail in mid Michigan.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Judy – we sold these barn quilts when we were open – the fabric we chose was reproduced on this very lightweight aluminum – I forget the name of it. Our printer made them for us and even though they were expensive, the colors are still as bright as when they were new. We don’t make them anymore and our printer does not want to make them. They cost over. $100 to ship them which was just too much for anybody. They are wonderful – I have another one to hang and I forgot about it – guess what Rick’s going to do tomorrow!!

  16. Launa

    No spring bedding plants as the deer 🦌, elk and occasional moose would devour them. Anyway we had over6” new snow last night and now more during sunshine! Looks like winter wonderland hanging on trees. Plenty of snow all over yet to melt.
    Everyone do ordered Social Distancing and wear a homesewn mask 😷 when marketing, etc.
    Enjoyed today’s pictures, Mary! Don’t overdo!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Launa – nope, I won’t overdo – we’re pretty much done for now and it’s going to rain for three days so I can sew, bake, read, cook – all of which is easier on the old body!

  17. Mary Says Sew!

    Chicklet is one gorgeous dude! Thanks for the beautiful photo of him and his chick-friend.

    But I understand about not having roosters – there’s just no good solution; neutering’s not practical, they can’t all live penned together and we don’t want to kill them either.

      1. Mary Says Sew!

        I don’t have chickens, so no rooster problems.

        We had a few chickens when I was a kid on the family farm. A fox or some other predator took several of them. I think my dad butchered the rest of them in the fall. All the hens were Rhode Island reds and all the roosters were white. Not easy to identify individuals.

        The roosters became aggressive. That’s probably when they became dinner. It’s easier to have them butchered when you’ve been chased around, whacked with wings and pecked a few times.

  18. Kathy in western NY

    Great quilt show of pictures! Love all you share with us.
    It was me who asked about your gateleg table cause I like the lighter wood so might convince hubby to paint ours as it’s not his favorite chore at all. I can’t imagine how yours looked painted orange! They are great sturdy tables though.
    After lunch, I did a quick run into our local grocery store for fresh veges and hardly anyone in there at all as they did the senior hours early this morning. I didn’t go down aisles for canned goods but went to dairy area for yogurt and cheese for grilled cheese sandwiches. Comfort food you know! Clerks were sanitizing their stations so faithfully but I did self check out as I didn’t have a lot and a supervisor wiped it down before I started. I hadn’t been to the store in two weeks since my self isolation. Just wished I had taken one of my handmade masks as people were all wearing them. I had plastic gloves on but it’s so new to think of all this protection we now need.
    Hope you relaxed some today Mary with everything you did but your place is looking spiffy. I will be saying Hallelujah when that trip buying flowers and vege plants happens for all of us in this country.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Kathy in western NY – we’re doing groceries tomorrow – we need to stock up on beer! We cannot stay home 2 weeks at a time without beer!!!

  19. Dee

    Yes I am ready to plant but I am afraid they won’t let the nurseries open. I have 3 old galvanized water troughs to plant. They make beautiful planters

  20. Judy A

    I’m following your gardening, so I know what to do in my yard 🙂 You’re an inspiration!! Do you not cut down the hydrangeas, or cut off the dead flower heads? Just cleanup around them? I know they’ll be beautiful!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Judy A – there’s got to be an easier way to clean up hydrangeas – I am going to figure it out. I normally cut them down in late fall so spring is much easier

      1. Judy A

        My garden center told me to whack them down to 12″ so the dry stalks would help hold up the new ones. It was worked well until we had a nasty gusty storm. I’m thinking to leave 24″ this time. On my way out….. It’s a nice sunny day!

  21. Dianna

    Thanks for the pictures of the yard. So good to think about fresh produce from the garden. Glad that I froze a lot of veggies last year, my husband plants and harvests and I freeze and do some canning.
    My daughter and her family just gave me your book “Sew Charming”, scrappy quilts from 5 inch squares, I asked for it so I’m getting ready to make a quilt from it. Great book. I want to sign up for the dirty dozen next time. Stay Well Mary, glad that you are recovering quickly now. Thanks for pics of Hazel, makes me smile every time I see her.

  22. Holly in Two Harbors, MN

    I had Annabelle hydrangeas all the way around the summer kitchen of my last house. They got wider every year. I was told by the former owner to cut them down in the spring or they wouldn’t bloom–such a job! One year I started mowing them down to about a foot off the ground with a hedge trimmer–and cut right through the power cord! I couldn’t figure out for a minute why the dumb thing had stopped. Ha!

    I love the picture of the chickens–just beautiful! And I also am a big fan of that quilt with the blue squares.

    It’s a good thing rain is coming before you wear yourself completely out, but it’s hard not to on a beautiful day when there’s so much to do. Those kind of days give me more ambition than my body can handle!

    It’s very quiet here, now that the tourists have been told to stay home. Before that, many of the tourists were stopping at the one grocery store in our little town and stocking up before returning to the Twin Cities metro area. Our next closest grocery store is 25 miles away and the locals did not appreciate the shelves being completely emptied by people who have a lot of stores in their home area. I hope the next time I need to go to the store the shelves won’t be so empty. People in our community are very compliant with the stay at home order and don’t hoard, which is wonderful. There is a lot of kindness and consideration being shown in these uncertain times and it gives me new hope for humanity.

  23. Sherrill

    Just looking at what you’ve done in the garden makes me tired. LOL!! I LOVE your blue square quilt. I have one like that started..need to revisit that one.

  24. Connie R

    I also love your blue shirts quilt and look forward to your pattern.
    Sandy, I am praying for your cousin in Australia. Hope he is improving.
    Hopefully Jean had a lot of cards for her 100th birthday. A celebration should be in order when we can mingle again.

  25. Linda

    So glad to hear there will be a Dirty Dozen again. I was doing so well, even though I did not send any pictures. Then this month hit. I opened the project box, got everything lined up and got a start. Then it was packet away as I started making masks – lots of masks. Hope to finish the latest batch tomorrow and then will take a break. March’s DD will be put on the next session. I love seeing what everyone else’s DD are – hmm, even recognized a couple of them! They will be in my next batch of 12.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Linda – you should send pictures! YOU love seeing others projects so do your part and send pictures labeled with your name. No excuses.

  26. Kathy Schwartz in SW MN

    All of the projects are just beautiful. Thanks for sharing.
    Yesterday at our Dollar Store, one gal was buying some items and put them down on the counter. The clerk turned around and coughed (cigarette cough–I know she smokes) and the customer walked out of the store, left the items on the counter, and got the chief of police who came and told the clerk she “had to go home.” She did go home, but she was back at work today. I just don’t know what to make of all of this; other than it is really sad.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Kathy Schwartz – that’s incredible! Why don’t the clerks wear masks and gloves to be on the safe side? I haven’t been in a store to know – we’re going to get groceries today but will be mighty quick about it.

  27. Felicia Hamlin

    Oh, my, Hazel looks so pretty, she is so white and her nose and eyes are like pieces of coal. Chiclet is beautiful for sure. Mary, I am glad that the weather will make you stay home otherwise you might end up with some injury. Beautiful quilts!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Felicia – not to worry- I feel better than I have in years after all that work and exercise! It’s good for the soul as well as the body.

  28. Sandy

    Thank you to the people praying for my cousin Graeme in Australia, he is in an induced coma at present.it is really scary as I live so far away,nothing has ever happened to any of us before.l pray for a good outcome, love to all,sandy

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Sandy – hope he’s going to be OK – prayers for you all.

  29. Lois Palmisano

    Hi ya Mary, hire that work someone who has been laid off can buy flood.

    I I’ll close your . ads.

    Love you

  30. Shirley

    Check out the story on CNN, “Wild goats take over Welsh town amid coronavirus lockdown.” You’ll love it!

  31. Mrs. Goodneedle

    … and know that I am God.

    Oh, that blue plaid treasure! 😍
    Hazel and her towel are just too, too cute; that brings such a smile. Take good care, Mary; stay healthy.

  32. Diane Bauer

    Oh, Hazel! Such fun to play after your bath!!

    I, too, love the baby quilt made of men’s shirts. How I wish I still had some of my grandfather’s shirts. One Grandpa owned a men’s clothing store and was quite the dapper fellow. He died when I was 15, so I missed out of that stash of wonderful men’s dress shirts!!

    So glad to hear you will do another Dirty Dozen next year. It’s been such a wonderful motivation for me to get some things done. Somehow, I manage to create as many new UFOs as I finish, but it keeps me going!!

  33. Kathy Hanson

    I love that plaid quilt, will look forward to being able to order the pattern. So many beautiful quilts that everyone is finishing. I had better get my pictures sent!!!

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