One of those days, 5-5-24

The day was so perfect – for just being outside and soaking up the sun so I spent my afternoon mowing. It’s supposed to rain many times this week so I had to get some of the thickest areas mowed. So thick a belt actually came off! So I went to the shed and got another mower – I think I’m going to buy another mower like my favorite – only with a bigger deck.

I have a new project to show you even though it’s not bound yet. I’m waiting for a rainy day. This vintage Alexander Henry fabric is from the 80s and it’s one of those pieces I loved so much I saved it. No more saving anything!!!

Here’s the little quilt – about 36” square and is so versatile. It could be a center medallion for a larger quilt, a table mat, a baby quilt – and of course a hanging. What a nice gift this would be – big pieces, strip borders, fast and simple piecing. This is an old Country Threads pattern.


As I’m cataloging all the Country Threads patterns, I want to remake so many of them. I can see how our designs evolved over nearly 40 years. This one is a classic and is a reduced size of the Big Star quilt, another one of our most popular patterns.

Pattern available for $5 and a SASE – it’s only one sheet so I’m positive one stamp will do it. I complained at the post office that many envelopes arrive as postage due and she said it depends on who reads the scale and sometimes the weight is right on the line. Ugh. I’ll try to be as accurate as I possibly can.

Reader photos

A reader in PA saw this in a second hand shop and thought it looked like Hank. I agree! I’m already missing Hank – maybe he could come and play this week?
Had to include all of these just to highlight the quilts as well as the gorgeous rag doll cats.
These are amaryllis bulbs planted outside in Ohio – can you believe it?
Sammy – growing up and getting more beautiful every day. Reminds me of being a kid and growing up with a collie.
Taken right after Hank went home – can you see Hazel’s relief that he was gone? Keeper just needed to rest! This is Connie’s old chair – I’d like to get rid of it now but how can I when it’s their favorite chair?????

One last look at Glory Star

Many errands today – leftovers for supper. Windy again – dog door can’t even be open!!! So inconvenient.

After several inches of rain last week the Winnebago river is over it’s banks in many places including right below Becky’s house. Here is what she’s seeing out her west windows:

These pictures were taken this morning on her walk. Wish I had a before picture – just take my word for it. The river is over the bank!!!!

36 thoughts on “One of those days, 5-5-24

  1. Kathy in western NY

    Yikes that river is high near Becky. Hope rain calms down. Your quilt is beautiful Mary! Love the polka dot background you used. The lilacs are opened here so quite lovely to see. The chair reminds the dogs of a comfy bed so they must love curling up in it. The sweet cats on the quilt remind me how much I miss my cat every day and trying to accept Buddy was my last cat as I’ve had them all my life. It’s been a month and I still can’t accept he’s not here.
    Yesterday area churches did a crop walk along our canal for food pantries and a couple walked with their collie which was so obedient and stood right next to owners while they had water bottles we were giving out along the walk. They told us he was a Rescue no one wanted for so long so they took him but I was amazed at his loyalty as he wore no leash as he walked beside them. The owner had leash in his hand but was not needed as the dog just walked by others on the trail. I do enjoy hearing people’s tales of a pet coming into their lives. And seeing the devotion the pets give them back.

    1. Pamela Dempsey in Northeast Texas 😻

      Oh, Kathy, I am so sorry you can’t have another kitty and about Buddy. It’s been a little over a year ago now that our Emily 🐈‍⬛ passed away and I still miss her so much. Penny and Lucy have been such a comfort but it doesn’t take away all the grief. That rescue collie sounds amazing, so glad someone adopted him! Hang in there 🥰

      1. Kathy in NY

        Thanks Pamela. I’ve had emotional times each day and I hope they lessen. I know your story with Penny and Lucy and commend you for rescuing those loving kitties. I would love another one but I’m like Mary thinking of the future with my family’s availability to take in one of my pets if something happened to me and it wouldn’t be fair. Health issues that arise make you think. A cat lounge has opened not far from me and I will go have coffee there one morning, play with the kitties and hope afterwards I can walk out the door feeling better and not bring one home,

        1. Pamela Dempsey in Northeast Texas 😻

          The cat lounge sounds awesome! I would have to go daily to get some kitty loving 🥰! They are just such awesome pets, near perfection 🤭. Since my girls are calico I think God smiled when he was giving them their different colors and patches, so different and pretty. Can you send Mary a picture of Buddy to post? Would love to see him!

    2. Mary Etherington Post author

      Kathy – are you absolutely sure you can’t have another cat? Maybe a senior cat that needs a home? Seems so sad that a person can’t have a cat when so many need homes. I wish I could open a senior sanctuary. If I recall your husband took it hard and I know how difficult it can be. Are you going to your campground soon?

      1. Kathy in NY

        Mary- He did take it hard losing Buddy and our hearts still feel broken. We came home from camp this weekend and cried cause the dogs ran to the cats sleeping spot looking for him. He would go ride in the motor home with us in years past. I always remember the vet saying to us a cat finds you many times as Buddy just walked through the door late one cold November night 14 years ago so he stayed inside with us since. I’m hoping we might say it’s time in the future but we’ll have a serious conversation with our kids about it too. I want my pets cared for if I’m not able to. I’m going to send you an email of a place in Buffalo area I learned about with senior cats living out their years.

        1. Mary Etherington Post author

          Kathy – got the email which I’ll read a bit later. I’d do this in a minute but Rick wants no part of it. So, I just can’t. I have too many ideas and I always feel life is too short not to do them!

  2. Diane in Colorado

    Cute little Hank pup! What I noticed immediately is that he’s sitting on my Grandma’s old roaster, which I have now and use annually to make caramel corn! I just have the roaster, not the cabinet underneath of it.

    So many cute pet photos today! The Collie, Sammy, is beautiful!!

    The rivers are rising here, too. Here, though, it means that the snow is melting up in the mountains and that means it’s officially spring! We haven’t had rain and none is expected.

    I put plants in on Saturday–blue hydrangeas, columbine, calla lilies, peppers, tomatoes, zucchini, cilantro. I don’t usually plant this early because of the threat of frost, but the weather app looks good ahead and I can cover all of them if need be. It was good to get my hands in the dirt! My neighbor and I went out and pulled weeds in the rocks between our houses. Everything looks fresh again!

    I’ve made the Glory Star a few times! It’s easy and makes a lovely baby quilt! Now I may have to pull the pattern out again and make one for myself!

  3. Jan in AZ

    Love the colors in the “Glory Star”! It turned out beautifully! Always enjoy seeing the variety of quilts. I’m becoming a fan of straight line quilting, Mary.
    Thanks for sharing the Hank photos during his visit. Amazing how fast he’s grown, as have your chickens. I’ve watched the weather and think of you and how it impacts your part of Iowa. Wow! Beautiful shots near Becky’s house, but, that water is a little to close for comfort. Stay safe.
    Off to the sewing machine. Have a productive day, all. 🙂

  4. Sharon F

    Your Glory Star quilt is lovely in those fabrics! You’re right about not saving those beautiful fabrics any longer, time to use them up. A sentiment I need to take to heart.
    Loved the pictures of the beautiful ragdoll kitties on the beautiful quilts.
    I need to catch up on chores today after a busy weekend that included volunteering at the quild’s quilt show most of the day Saturday.

  5. sandra goddard

    I hope Becky’s rive goes down shortly. Just think of those poor people in Texas such destruction. Wonderful pictures today. Those cats are gorgeous. Love your star

  6. Brenda in Iowa

    Mary, I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the Glory Star pattern. The first one I purchased from County Thread became so threadbare at the folds that I was so thankful to find one at a thrift store one time. I’ve now accumulated 2 more but I’m keeping them all because I use the pattern so much.
    I’ve made this pattern several times. I’ve also added some more borders to make it eligible for a Quilts of Valor. Thank you so much for creating this pattern so many years ago. One of my all-time favorites of the Country Threads quilts.
    I always look at patterns when I go to a thrift store and always pick up a County Threads pattern even if I have it already. I should count how many patterns I have some time.

    Happy Nurses’ Day and Week to all of my nursing colleagues on this blog.

    Hope everyone has a wonderful week.

    1. Brenda in Iowa

      PS – Forgot to mention that I LOVE the lavender fabric you selected for this pattern.

  7. Pamela Dempsey in Northeast Texas 😻

    Oh my! I hope Becky doesn’t get flooded! Your Glory Star is so beautiful 😻, lovely fabric! Those ragdoll kitties are adorable and so are Keeper and Miss Hazel. Joan’s quilt is one I want to make, I’m drooling 🤤. The Collie looks like a real sweetie 🥰.
    I worked outside this morning, planted more day lilies, Cherokee purple tomatoes and layed out straw for mulch under everything. My knees are so sore.

  8. Carolyn Rector of Ohio

    Love your Glory Star quilt. Lovely choice of fabric. Hard to believe the Amaryillis came up inOhio. Beautiful scary to see a River rise. We’ve had our share of spring rains.. Probably why crops don’t go in early. Good to see your dogs on their chair. They look happy and get along so well. I bought a toy possum from Chewy. Hope my daughter’s dog finds its indestructable, too

  9. Hank's Mom

    Sammy is priceless. What a beautiful beautiful dog. I’m like Mary and grew up with collies. In the 1960’s seemed like alot of farm families had collies. Lassie certainly made the breed even more popular. When I see one today I still think they are beautiful but would not want to be responsible for the upkeep on that long hair. But when the owners groom them, those dogs are stunning.

    I had to laugh at the photo of Keeper and Hazel. I’m sure Hazel was relived Hank went home and Keeper looks exhausted. A good time was had by all-except Hazel.

    Thanks to all of you readers for your kind comments about Hank and wanting to have one just like him 🙂 Last night he had a 15 minute stretch of shark attacks and I would have loaned him out for a few minutes if you all lived closer. My left hand this morning is proof that those baby teeth are still very sharp. But, all in all he is a very sweet boy with just a small window of naughty in the evenings when he gets too tired.

  10. Sharon G NE IN

    Love your beautiful purple quilt!! We have had a lot of rain in NE Indiana, too. As always, I love the photos you show us!

  11. Lynette in Orlando

    Mary — LOVE your little quilt!!! The colors are so beautiful and soothing. I just may have to dig through my stash……. LOL. The picture of “Hank” – my mom had that same roaster — brought back wonderful memories as it made the best turkey at Christmas and ham for Easter. Yum! I love all the fur baby photos! So cute!!!! 😍😍

  12. Jean

    Mary glory star is absolutely BEAUTIFUL! That fabric. Oh my. Isn’t it amazing that beautiful fabric doesn’t ever get dated. Most fabric does date but now and again there are those pieces that are timeless. Glory star is one of those. That color! Wow.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Jean – yes, that color! I’ve never made anything with that color – ever! And I just love it. So glad I didn’t pitch that vintage fabric.

  13. Betty Klosterman

    Look at the 5th picture of your Glory Star quilt. What is the quilt on the upper left corner? The colors look really interesting. Remember we look at EVERYTHING in the pictures!!!

    In September,2013, my cousins from Tucson stopped in Rapid City on their way to Ames and home to Tucson. I had 11 or 12 amaryllis bulbs and they got to go to home with them. They sent pictures of the bulbs looking great in all their glory come spring. They had their camper parked in our yard. One week later after they left we got the October 3 snow storm, Atlas!!!

    Take care. We’ve lived thru all sorts of weather and survived. Take care. Betty in Rapid City.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      It’s the sewing machine – I showed it in tonight’s blog post

  14. Jackie Baumhauer

    I love the fabric in Glory Star. Very pretty. Always had a lavender bedroom when I was growing up.

  15. Susan in AL

    What beautiful colors in the pictures today — the blue of the water, the green everything growing, the fabulous red amaryllis, the outrageously gorgeous Glory Star — and Joan! Your quilt is an optical illusion! I looked at it a dozen times trying to figure out how you did that!

  16. Cathy D

    I just ordered the Star quilt pattern!! Love it. Warm, windy, with pops of sun in NC Iowa today. We’ve got the rain turned on and can’t get it shut off it seems. The west branch of the Des Moines river is out of its banks in areas around here. Hope Becky’s home is on high ground so as not to cause her problems. Sorting through things for a garage sale in the near future – yuck!

  17. Carol Johnson

    Are you the creator of the country threads patterns? I have a book of yours. I have always loved your patterns. Are you not selling them anymore? Love your blog.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Carol Johnson – yes, I’m the windy half of Country Threads. We closed our shop 10 years ago but I will still honor pattern requests if I can. Some of the patterns are gone forever because when we closed we assumed we were done. Nope, I get requests and comments every single day. We were in business for over 40 years and the blog took the place of the Goat Gazette. Which of our books do you have?

  18. Jeanine from SE Iowa

    I also love your Glory Star quilt. I have one hanging in my living room in patriotic colors. I leave it up year round. We are seeing our first Baltimore Orioles at our farm. I saw three at one time at the feeder today. Usually there is only one there at a time. The purple finches also enjoy the grape jelly. They don’t sit and eat very long at a time. Love all the pictures today, as usual. It was in the low 70’s today, but had that wind along with it. Take care everyone. I hope our friends in the Houston area are safe. That is a lot of flooding down there.

  19. Rita in Iowa

    Mary love the Star Quilt. Beautiful quilts and quilts in progress. The kitty’s are too cute. Keeper and Hazel are in their relaxed mode.
    Love reading all the comments from the readers. Spent the day helping my sister and BIL clean and wax the bottom portion of their house boat before it’s put in the water in East Dubuque. It was a beautiful day to do that. Tomorrow I hope to spend the after with my Quilting buddy. Stay safe for all those in central US of the storms.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Rita – ah, fun on the water! Ive always thought a houseboat would be ideal – I hate speedboats!

  20. Linda from Georgia

    Mary, the medallion quilt is awesome! I too am trying very hard to use what I have. It’s like visiting an old friend and wondering why you had visited them sooner. I am working on my first English paper piecing project. I am enjoying it but is going to take some time. I have been on a small trip to Florida to see my grandson graduate from Florida State. Now I need to get busy sewing. I would love to have a Hank. He is very handsome!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Linda – I, too, would love to have a Hank but I think I’ve got my hands full!

  21. Janet S

    The Glory Star quilt pattern is wonderful. The large pieces go together fast thus it gets done faster and uses up more stash. For some reason, I don’t have many patterns with large pieces so, of course, I will be ordering. You are an inspiration.

  22. Donna Jo

    Mary your quilt is really pretty; love that color. I didn’t even notice the quilts the rag dolls are laying on. They are beautiful! Love Joan’s quilt too.

Comments are closed.