Oregon Or Bust, 4-18-23

Jo at Jo’s Country Junction is making this Bonnie Hunter quilt following my lead of using only blue and orange mens’ shirts. My quilt is completely made using mens shirts from the thrift store – front, back and binding.

There are two blocks that have white fabric with blue stars – this is my blouse that I wore for the picture on the cover of the first Quilt Sampler and I wanted to preserve that special memory.

And this is why I make all my quilts smaller – I sleep in a twin bed.

Didn’t you just love reading all those comments? I DID!!! They made me feel like a group of friends were talking over coffee. And I am comforted by the fact that your lives are very similar to mine – pretty much about nothing really – just calm ordinary simple days with the exception of health problems thrown in at times.

Speaking of health – I went to the podiatrist this morning about that painful lump on my foot only to find out it’s just another sign of aging – arthritis! He gave me two cortisone shots in the top of my foot – and I passed out! When I came to I was crying!!! I really thought I was tougher than that – obviously another sign of old age. Grrrr…..

Now let’s all get on the same page about Barbara Veeder. She is local otherwise her quilts would not have been in the local show. Her name is spelled V-E-E-D-E-R. Not V-E-D-D-E-R. Barbara Vedder lives in Connecticut and is a nationally known quilt artist/teacher.

Remember that hole Hazel was digging to China?

Carol T. – please send me an email so I have your correct email address.

P.S. For anyone wanting to send pictures or reach me, this is my email:


I have some wonderful new pet pictures to show you tomorrow!

97 thoughts on “Oregon Or Bust, 4-18-23

  1. Pat Cooper

    Your blue and orange shirt quilt is fabulous, with a capital F…..
    I’m so partial to blue and especially denim. Thanks for the pictures.

  2. Mareen Nedved

    OMG Mary I have had steroid shots in my foot as well – and believe it or not I went back a second time – but not sure I will again. It did help tho!! Just keep it up and don’t be on it for a bit – I know that is hard for you to do tho but maybe it will rain and that will help. Take care!!

  3. MartyCae

    I am sorry to hear about your foot. As the saying goes “getting older is not for sissies.”
    I remember the first time I visited your shop. I thought I had dies and gone to heaven! Quilts, animals and very nice ladies!
    How neat is it that you put your cover blouse in your quilt!
    I think spring has finally sprung in Emmet County despite the surprise 3″ of snow. I hope the snow did not damage my tulips.

  4. Jo in Wyoming

    My lovely DIL came over to adjust my phone to keep the battery from going down so fast….she wiped out all the emails on my iPad!!! How does that happen? So, I missed all the conversations.
    Lordy, Mary, I hope that shot helps.
    I have to buckle down on quilting jobs, the yard work will have to wait a while.
    No snow so far this week.

  5. Signe Burgen Vaughan

    I have always loved your blue and orange shirt quilt and have a photo of it in my files. I have collected all the thrift store shirts and have taken them apart. I need to find the moving box they are in and then start the quilt. It is a spectacular quilt, Mary! It is exciting that Jo is starting her quilt. I will send a photo when I finish.

  6. Fiona at Ice Bear Quilts

    Hi Mary,
    What a great way to preserve your shirt! I like to buy bits of fabric when I am holiday: nothing huge, just a fat quarter or so, and when I use them, I am immediately back in my holiday, thinking ‘I remember buying this at that little shop in Sweden, or Oregon, or France’ or wherever it happened to be. Sometimes it is quilting fabric, but often local fabric used for traditional dress (I’m a sucker for folklore textiles!).
    I do that with small things that I can hang on our Christmas tree too: almost all our decorations represent a personal memory: everything from a reindeer bell from Lapland to to glass bauble from Germany or a lace decoration from Madeira. It’s like unpacking a 3D life-experiences photo album every Christmas!

  7. Diane in Maryland

    Mary, your foot looks so painful! I hope the shots help after you went through that pain! So sorry you have this.

    I turned on my computer this morning and it said I had 48 emails! What?? I have never had that many. They were all comments from Country Threads blog readers and they have continued throughout the day. I have read and enjoyed each one. You surely got readers to respond! Haha

  8. Marcia Livingston

    Hope the shots give you some relief. They have helped me. My mom used to say ‘Gettin’ old is not for sissies’. Love your ‘sleep cubby’ . Perfect size to change out your quilts frequently.

  9. Lois Ann Johnson

    Ouch! That foot of yours looks very painful! I once had a cortisone shot in my knee and it helped almost immediately. I was a “big baby” about it at first, not wanting to get it. My friends convinced me it would be for the best–and they were right. (Don’t you hate it when your friends are “right” and we are not?) Haha!
    I love your little sleeping alcove. It looks so cozy and inviting. Do any of the animal sleep there with you? I have a queen size bed and Bailey still manages to crowd me!

  10. Rhoda Ebersole

    Is the Mason City quilt group no longer in existence?
    That was a very large group years ago but things change and people age overtime or move away like me.

    So sorry for your arthritis Mary and you are the busiest person I know. A friend here moved to dry Las Vegas to alleviate her arthritis problems and it helped her considerably.

    Good of you to keep your blouse fabric in the blue shirt quilt too.

  11. Paula W

    Hi Mary,
    I just love your bed, it’s so cozy and relaxing. I know you say your life is simple, but really, isn’t that what we all strive for in a world full of too much drama. I much prefer a simple, quiet routine to my day.

  12. DebMac

    What a good thought to include your blouse in the quilt. But what really caught my eye was the jumper! Why did jumpers ever go out of style? I loved them. Much cooler in summer than anything with a waistband. Will be heading up your way Thursday to visit a friend but was hoping for a little warmer weather. A day for quilt shop hopping and a day for sewing. Still need to decide which projects to bring. I’ll wave when I/we pass your corner.

    1. Fiona at Ice Bear Quilts

      @DebMac, I miss jumpers too, I loved them: so neat and easy to wear! I still have two nice cozy ones for in the winter, no draughts!, but I made them myself from an old Kwik Sew pattern about 5 years ago. And every time I wear them, someone says ‘why did jumpers go out of fashion?’. Maybe they’ll come back in some day.

  13. Jean Elliott

    Wow, I have never seen arthritis show up like that. I’ve seen nobby fingers, but never a lump like that on a foot. I’m wondering how you can wear a shoe on that foot. Those Cortizone shots are no fun. I’ve had more than my share. Actually depends where you get them. If it’s right in a joint that doesn’t hurt so much, but anyplace else. Oh no. I got one in the bottom of my foot once …thought I would die. So I know how you felt.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Jean – the previous podiatrist said I had to wear good supportive shoes so I bought a great pair of expensive sneakers that I couldn’t wear because they fit tight over that bump. Now I wear sandals and one pair of sort-of sandals that are cut out in the middle of my foot and everybody says it’s just another form of sandals. Now that I know it’s arthritis and I’ll just have to live with it I feel like I’ve got permission to wear whatever feels the best! Haha!

  14. Jeanine in Iowa

    I also like your blue/orange quilt. It is hard to find men’s shirts in orange. I don’t think I have any.

    Today was my sewing day with our church ladies. We meet once a week for 2 hours. Our current project is making twin/lap quilts for a farm school in Honduras. The nice thing about that is we don’t have to put batting in them, and then we just tie them so the ladies that don’t sew have something to do too. We are a small group, but we get quite a bit done. I am the one who ends up binding them, but I just turn up the backing, so not so bad.

    Nicer today with less wind. I also got my hair cut today……short for summer. I haven’t had it this short in a long time!

  15. Terri S.

    Your poor foot looks painful. Hope the cortisone shot helps! Wouldn’t it be funny if Hazel finds gold!!

  16. Sue H

    Your poor foot! Hope those shots help you out. Now I also hope I never get arthritis in my foot! Love the orange & blue quilt. What a great thrift store mission. That’s the only kind of shopping I like. Haha!

  17. Kim

    I’m not at all surprised that you passed out from the pain of that injection of cortisone. I had that done to my thumb joints and I found the pain to be too much to take. I cried! I couldn’t use my hands for several hours after. The doctor didn’t explain that the needle injects fluid directly into the joint, causing it to expand and WOW did it ever. He could have prepared me for what was coming. New surgeon and the second and last time I had the injections ( before surgery to repair) I had a pain med first. I have a lump on top of my right foot like you have and now I’m thinking it’s the same cause as yours. I’ll have it checked to be sure it’s not something else but I do not have high hopes. I do wish you relief from your pain once the injection pain subsides. I recall I had better pain relief the first time and then the next step was to have the joints repaired so I did and so far so good!

  18. Dee Dee Peterson

    Ouch! Dang it hurts to get shots in a foot. I didn’t pass out but did cuss like a sailor. Once I kicked at the doctor. My foot just kicked. He and I were both shocked. Oops!

  19. Jean Fuder

    I love the orange and blue quilt! Excellent colors but a lot of work using only shirts, you have more patience then I do, beautiful quilt!

  20. Sandy

    Hi Mary, sorry your foot is sore, hope the shot helped.Has Hazel reached China yet? I would worry with all that China behind your bed in case of earthquakes in New Zealand, we put Blu tac under ornaments here.Hope you got my photo of the latest scrap quilt l just sent, off now on trip to Norfork Island, yay!Take care everyone, best wishes from Sandy

  21. Kathy in western NY

    My husband has a lump too on top of his foot and it’s confirmed arthritis from X-rays as I think I told you before so know how hard it is to find loose footing shoes. He’ll limp occasionally. I had a steroid shot in my head once for a hair loss and I said never again and I was a lot younger so I would be no good today with a cortisone shot. I’ll live with a bald patch in back.
    Mary, have you gotten your porch cleaned out to sit out there soon? Today we were much cooler and I sure hope Carol in Buffalo didn’t get snow like it looked on our radar on tv. Now 70’s on Friday and Saturday. Such is spring. My colorful tulips are so pretty all opened. I too loved hearing how all your readers are doing and have had several on my mind recently so I was glad Diane in Des Moines wrote about how it’s going with her mom living with them. Heartwarming to read it.

  22. Deb E

    What a beautiful bed area — its very cozy, love the curtains around it, too! Yikes! I read your comment about passing out after a steroid shot into your foot. I just had knee surgery on the left knee Friday. I’ve asked for a steroid shot into the right knee (the bad one, by far – eventual total knee replacement) when I have my post op appt on the 28th. I have an extremely high pain tolerance (no pain meds after this surgery, hysterectomy & tumor(s) removed, a gall bladder surgery & trigger thumb surgery). But the knee pain in my right leg is often AWFUL. I’m going to do it anyway as it has to be done, but hoping I won’t react in a similar way! Hope you are feeling much better soon! I was just out today raking and moving dirt & rocks and moving larger rocks to make a long planter today & I did similar things on Sun-Mon. I’m sure the surgeon would be horrified, but I just need to ice my knee now as the ankle and foot are swollen….but still no pain in that knee. The right knee is just ‘twinging’ right now, so it will get iced, too. We all do what we have to do to get things done, but I wish I’d taken a bit better care of my knees when I was a young woman!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Deb E – funny you should mention taking care, Rick just now said to me not to go crazy just because it doesn’t hurt at the moment. Dang. I’ve got things to do, too, and our season is so short. My left knee was the worst and after several shots surgery became inevitable. But I hate the fact that I can’t get down on my hands and knees to work and knees don’t bend like normal and my back hurts so bad that bending at the waist is painful! My mom always said the same thing – all the things I did would catch up with me in the long run but I didn’t listen. Haha!!!

  23. Jill

    Love your quilt (great to repurpose) and the blue & orange! Thank you for sharing!

  24. Janet Beyea

    Your feet have so many nerves, it is understandable that the shot was so painful.

  25. Polly Blank

    I love you saying Hazel was digging a hole to China. It reminds of my Mom saying the same thing. I have a nephew only 4 years younger than me and we used to dig holes in our yard to play “war” with those foldable Army shovels. We made our trenches to hide out from the enemy. Mom’s rule was we had to fill them back in before we could come in for the night so someone wouldn’t fall in them.

    Good memory. We used to make up our own games rather than playing video games all day.

    Polly in Florida

  26. Lynette in Orlando

    Mary — this getting old is not for the faint of heart!!! Hope your foot feels better very soon. I tried to do some gardening today — had a bit of a run in with my Norfolk pine that I needed to replant in a larger container. I ended up falling down and a bloodied arm……. oh so frustrating…….. sat here tonight and cried. I’m too old for this!!!!!! Can’t wait for more pet pics. I love your quilt and nook…… I want to curl up and read in there!!!

  27. Sharon Ray

    Love the blues and oranges! Hope your foot feels better soon. The dogs look like they are having a blast! I finished my Bible quilt today, happy dance here. Our weather in Florida has been perfect, low humidity, even 50’s at night and clear during the day, wonderful!!!

  28. Kathy Buryon

    Terriers love to dig, I think it’s their favorite pastime the minute they get bored.
    Love the quilts for the quilt show you went to. I went to the Quilt Expo in Akron last Friday. Most of the show are retail booths. They do have a competitive quilt contest in one part of the building. They have a couple themes that you can pick from.
    Will also go to the Wooster Show this summer where there are more quilts on display like you shared.
    I’m sorry you are suffering from arthritis. I have the same issue. Eating a super clean diet ( no processed foods) really can help reduce inflammation. Sugar is also a main problem because it’s in so many products. It takes a while to get results but it will happen. I have benefited from clean eating. Less inflammation contributes to less pain. Just a suggestion for you Mary.
    Keep sewing and sharing.
    Kathy Burton

  29. Rita in Iowa

    Mary I read Jos comments about making her quilt like yours. It is so beautiful. Jo has her shirts all cut up.
    Your quilt is gorgeous on your bed. Sorry your foot is giving you so much trouble, it’s no fun.
    Made Turkey egg rolls for supper tonight and put some in the freezer.
    Spent a couple hours outside cleaning up flower beds before we get rain tonight.
    Tomorrow I will spend the day with my quilting buddy.

  30. Nancy

    Your quilt is beautiful! The orange and blue are perfect together. And your sleeping nook looks so comfortable.
    Your foot looks so very painful! So sorry for you. I hope the cortisone helps. Is there anything else your doctor can offer you? I know they do joint replacements for arthritis but is there any similar help for arthritis in the foot? (Reading comments, maybe not.)

  31. Lynn

    Mary your foot looks very painful. I hope it is not. Don’t you hate when doctors say something is a sign of old age.
    Love your quilts today and dog picture. Hazel is a true terrier. I miss having a terrier. I now have Goldens. Bigger is better in the hills of CA.

  32. Sue in Oregon

    Okay, Mary…I will bite. Why does your title say Oregon or Bust?? Are you coming out to visit me? That would be terrific. Hopefully, the weather will be grand and we will take you to the beach for a picnic. I hope your foot is better by then…soon, I mean. It looks very painful. My toes are starting to look very bent, but your look good. Beautiful quilts, funny dogs.

  33. Carmen Montmarquet

    Love your quilt so much Mary, can’t wait to see how Jo’s turns out. Wish we had thrift shops that had decent prices on their men’s shirts, I would love to make one like yours!!
    Your sleeping nook is so darn cute, it’s a perfect spot to show off your quilts!
    Your poor foot, I have arthritis in many places but not in my feet yet, thank goodness. I hope the shot really ends up helping you after what you went thru! Feel better soon!!!

  34. Mary Kannas

    Oh my goodness, love your sleeping nook! That quilt is awesome! Amazing how such a pretty quilt can be made using shirts. Makes me think of your quilt book “Use it Up, Wear it Out”.
    Oh Hazel! Never a dull moment. Also looks like she had a supervisor too!
    I’m anxious to get back to sewing. I have my sewing room packed up and moving it to a she shed. We need the bedroom for when grandbabes and their parents visit. We are getting three sweet babies within six months. We have two elementary age grand girls and now gaining three more! Loving it!

  35. Vicki in Seattle

    Mary, I love the cover picture of you and Connie on the Quilt Sampler! I’’m sure it brings back many memories.
    So hopeful that the shots will give you comfort and the ability to continue your active schedule.
    The tulips in the Skagit Valley north of Seattle are starting to bloom and paint glorious pictures. The cold and wet spring we have been having means that the bloom might extend into May a bit. A positive of the wet, cool days has been more time available for quilting instead of doing yard work!!!🌷🌷🌷

  36. Linda in Michigan

    Orange is not my color, but it sure looks nice in your quilt! I have a boat load of recycled men’s shirts in my stash, but no orange ones-were they hard to find?
    We’re under a freeze warning tonight, which might harm my husband’s apple and cherry trees. We were running around in shirt sleeves and shorts last week, now this. I can see a bunch of deer in the field taking advantage of all the green stuff that came up with the sun and warmth.
    I worked in health care for forty years and never saw a foot like yours–OUCH.

  37. Marsha in Michigan

    Mary, I’m at a quilt retreat in Shipshewana, IN and there were a bunch of magazines on the free table. I started looking for older ones that I might not have. I saw a pretty country applique quilt and looked closer and said, I think that’s Mary. It was so went back to my machine with it and opened my email to find your newsletter . . . With the exact same picture on the front as you shared in your newsletter today! What are the chances?❤️

    1. Judy

      Lovely little nook you get to sleep in – quite cozy. It brings back memories of the beds we slept in while visiting with old friends of my mom. There were “holes in the wall” with the most beautiful floral blankets. Bonus – the family had kittens in the barn attic, and we got to go fishing – 3 kids and two dads in a rowboat with cane poles, sorta like a tangle just waiting to happen :). But we caught enough fish for supper!

      And thanks for straightening us out about Barbara Veeder 🙂

    2. Judy

      Marsha in MIchigan, I’d love to hear about your quilt retreat in Shipshewana. Always on the lookout for a nice place to sew with friends.

  38. Henners

    Mary i love you Shirt quilt & the colors too. You bed nook makes me think of Scandinavian bedroom nooks.
    You foot looks painful & im guessing I might have fainted too from that shot. I’m ok w/shots but on the foot I’m guessing it hurt a lot. Do you have trouble finding shoes that don’t bother it? I know you’re on your feet a lot what with all your farm animals & standing at your long arm. I hope the injection brings you some comfort.
    I always enjoy your blog but don’t reply often. Take care Mary.

  39. Judy Gnade

    Hi Mary,
    I’m wondering if you contact the quilt show organizer if you can get a phone number for Barbara Veeder. It’s worth a try if you haven’t already done that.

    Hazel has help so that hole can continue to grow!

  40. Dee from Shell Rock

    I too am older. I’m tired though of being told, well you’re not young anymore. I really and truly know that! I hope you foot gets better soon. I know when your feet hurt , you hurt all over. Love your pictures as always,

  41. Judy

    Lovely little nook you get to sleep in – quite cozy. It brings back memories of the beds we slept in while visiting with old friends of my mom. There were “holes in the wall” with the most beautiful floral blankets. Bonus – the family had kittens in the barn attic, and we got to go fishing – 3 kids and two dads in a rowboat with cane poles, sorta like a tangle just waiting to happen :). But we caught enough fish for supper!

    And thanks for straightening us out about Barbara Veeder 🙂

  42. Kathy L

    Your bed nook is so sweet and cozy, I just love it. Your shirt quilt is beautiful

  43. Sheila

    Mary loved the shirt quilt. Whenever I see a shirt quilt I wish that I had saved some of my father’s shirts when he passed away. I can still see him in his plaid shirts and cardigan sweater, he always had a
    Mr. Rogers look about him. We did donate them to the church rummage sale, so they went to a good cause.
    I love you cozy sleeping nook, what a nice place to curl up with a good book. Has anyone read the Kitchen House, it is a great book.
    Not much sewing the past two weeks. Raking all the leftover winter sticks and debris last week. This week I am cleaning Magnolia leaves. I wish the flowers would last longer. I don’t think I will have day lilies this year. Two deer have been having a grand time the last few days giving them all a haircut. I just love watching them.
    I certainly hope the shots help with your arthritis. Aren’t these supposed to be the golden years?
    Take good care
    Sheila in MA

  44. Debra L Reber

    I am currently keeping my son’s 2 dogs while their house undergoes a major renovation. This is in addition to the dog I already have! One of them is a puppy (about 7 months old), & I am having major problems with her digging! Do you have any tips on how to stop dogs from digging???

  45. Melody in Wisconsin

    Your foot looks very painful, I hope the shots give you some relief. I just love your sleeping area. It looks so cozy and I would be in it reading a good book. Have you read any of Sandra Dallas books? She is one of my favorite authors. There is not a single book of hers that I did not like. Here in southwest Wisconsin we had 3 days that it was 80 degrees (too hot for this time of year) last week, then Sunday had a snowstorm with 4″ of heavy, wet snow which totally took care of all my blooming daffodils. I look forward all winter to when Spring comes and all my daffodils are blooming. How depressing!

  46. Ginger S

    I just love your Blue and orange quilt. I also read Jo’s blog and I saw that she was making that quilt in your color scheme. It’s a beauty!!!!!. I am sorry about your foot. It looks painful. I sure hope the shot helps. That Hazel! What a sweet little character she is!

  47. Lora Jans

    I love your comfy little sleeping cubby Mary—. So cozy!!
    I feel your foot pain. I had cortisone shots in my foot for plantar fasciitis- so painful. The Dr said the foot is the worse because there is no fat!!

  48. Connie R.

    I also love the quilt from shirts. The star fabric sure adds a lot to the design. I first thought they were appliqués when I saw the quilt on Jo’s blog.
    I’ve been working on a couple wool appliqué projects. I started one on Sunday after watching a tutorial online showing how to do a blanket stitch. I pulled out another wool UFO project while the stitch directions were still fresh in my mind.

    1. Kathy in western NY

      Oh Connie it is so fun doing wool appliqué. Very forgiving for me because I see some my stitches aren’t straight unlike regular embroidery with floss that I rip out time and time again if I am not happy with irregular stitches. I have a tote I keep with patterns and wool colors I like. My daughter makes gorgeous wall hangings using cotton and wool. I prefer small table mats now. Kansas Troubles had a year of mats I received monthly and have a couple kits yet to do but I sure enjoyed it. Looking forward to seeing what you make.

      1. Connie R.

        Kathy, I’m fairly new to wool appliqué so, I need quite a bit of practice. These that I’m working on are going to be called primitive until I get better at blanket stitch😂.

        1. Kathy

          Connie, sometimes I use a whipstitch around smaller pieces I am not sure if the blanket stitch would be doable for me. I am sure your piece will look very nice.

          1. Connie R.

            Kathy, Thanks for the tip on using the whip stitch. I’m going to try that on the rest of the piece I am working on. A mixture of stitches might look good. Thank you !

  49. Dorothy in Chicago

    Oh Mary you poor thing. Shots in the foot are so painful!!! I hope your foot is feeling better in the days to come.

  50. Grandma Rabbit (Pat) in AZ

    Mary, between you and Jo, i need to live to 110 to make all the quilts you’ve inspired. Just beautiful
    Sorry you’re having ongoing foot issues. It’s amazing how much we take them for granted until they poop out on us! Hope the shot gives you some relief.
    Best wishes

      1. Grandma Rabbit (Pat) in AZ

        Mary, oh thank goodness! There’s nothing like some relief from a long term pain. Bet you’re feeling like a new person. Yay!

  51. Jeanie S, Central IL

    Your sleeping nook is adorable, Mary! I love the curtains—so cozy.
    Dogs and little kids do love to dig. My grandson had a hole in their back yard. He became so enthralled with his project, he ask for cones and caution tape for his birthday. It was hilarious.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Jeanie – cones and caution tape! Hilarious!! The best part is that he’s outside playing instead of sitting in the house playing on his tablet.

  52. Lindah

    Ouchie! I hope that is not your sewing machine pedal foot. Hope it is feeling better soon.
    I always get a giggle when I read your comments about Jo and Bonnie. What a lovely quilt community we have. Oh BTW. Your bed arrangement is delightful. So cozy. I think there is a name for this kind of built-in bed, but I don’t remember what it is. Maybe someone else does.
    Blessings! Feel better soon.

  53. Mary Fratzke

    Every day i look forward to finding out what is happening in your next of the woods! Sorry about the foot issue…you’re still a tough lady! I was amazed at Barbara Veeder’s quilts, but your men’s shirts quilt is pretty special too!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Mary F – well, I am not capable of making a quilt like BV’s and not sure I could stick with a project of that magnitude. I love to piece however – my favorite thing to do.

  54. Susan Boyd in VA

    I love reading everyone’s comments and I don’t comment often, but I’ll try to correct that. Mary, I love your quilt from thrift store shirts. I need to start looking for those. We do a lot of estates sales. I should look there, too. I also really love your little “nook” bed. So cozy and comforting.
    We’re having very nice weather here in Northern Virginia, but it’s going to get hot again. It’s all part of spring not being able to decide what to do.
    We have a pond that I love watching. We have a pair of geese nesting. There should be goslings in a couple weeks or so. They never stay though. The day they hatch the whole “family” will walk away from here to another pond. Our pond isn’t safe enough, I guess. Too many hawks, foxes and such. I watched two male mallards this morning “fighting” in the yard. I don’t know if a pair of ducks will nest here or not. They never have in 20 years, but you never know! It would be wonderful if they did.
    You wanted to hear about our “everyday” lives. The above is one of the favorite parts of mine!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Susan – yes, I love it!!! Wonder what you could do to keep the goslings there to watch and enjoy. Yesterday a pair of wood ducks were at my little mud puddle of a pond but they flew away. Also I looked out the north window and saw a BLUEBIRD! I’ve never seen one in my life and in a perfect world he would stick around.

    2. Grandma Rabbit (Pat) in AZ

      Susan, we have a small fountain in our yard and we get an amazing varierty of birds for being in the middle of the desert. I spend a lot of time watching them coming in for drinks and baths, bickering and chattering. They are so entertaining. We’ve even had a pair of coots. What!?! Lol

  55. Annette

    I too think when I get home from a quilt show that I should have taken more photos to use as inspiration.

  56. Sue in Marion, IN

    Oh, Mary, so sorry about your foot. I turned 69 in January and it’s starting to be one health thing after another (minor, so far, thank goodness). Still, I’m ‘young” old😁. DH just turned 76 and same thing. Just last night I woke up with a Charlie horse in my leg and decided I might as well get up and pee and take my thyroid. Got in the bathroom, fainted, fell, bumped my head going down and landed on my elbow. When I felt like I could get up, I stood and promptly fell down again! Diagnosis of positional low blood pressure from getting out of bed too fast from my almost a doctor son. Phooey!😵‍💫 I feel fine this morning except for my elbow and the bump on my head.

    I love the quilt! And the dogs!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Sue – I’m glad your fall wasn’t any worse! I keep trying to remember my mom at this age and what her health was like which was pretty good. Yup, you have to learn to sit on the edge of your bed before jumping up – join the old timers club!

  57. Jan K

    Love, love the orange and blue quilt, and the blue star fabric memorialized into it is perfect! It is so reminiscent of the way quilts were made years ago, utilizing what was available and still creating a work of art. Kudos! Beautiful.

  58. Fran Dixon

    Love that quilt! You must have more patience than I do. I have made two Bonnie Hunter quilts tops done only. Some day I will quilt them. I enjoy you4 blog very much and the comments too. Quilting brings us together as one big family. It’s always interesting to see what other creativity quilters get into. And ouch on the foot! Did they want to do surgery? That’s what most drs. want to do. Love the eye candy here too!
    Fran in SW Iowa

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Fran – surgery was his last option actually and I would refuse. One of us has to be able so walk and now that I know it’s arthritis I will just use painkillers and lotions and compression as he suggested. The cortisone shots have worked a miracle! Doesn’t even hurt this morning! Yay!

  59. Tama

    I read Jo’s blog so knew what she was up to. I wondered what the quilt back looked like to was excited to see your blog’s post/photos. That’s a special quilt for sure. Just like you. Have a wonderful day!

  60. Linda in PA

    I love the look of quilts made from shirts. Yours is lovely. All cotton men’s shirts are scarce at my local thrift stores. I do have a bag of nice shirts size XL that my son was getting rid of after he lost a lot of weight. They were set to go to Goodwill. I just happened to stop by their house one day and saw them and told my daughter-in-law that I would like to have them. Unfortunately I still don’t have enough to make a quilt. Most of them are different shades of blue. I need to keep looking for some other colors.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Linda – yes, 100% cotton shirts are getting scare and the price has gone from $2.00 when I started collecting to $10!!! I have many on hand that have already been deconstructed so not to worry. Ha! So glad you rescued those headed for Goodwill.

  61. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

    Hi Mary, I Love the orange and blue quilt and that you put that neat blouse in it. Great idea:) It looks so pretty on your bed. Do you make your bed everyday? We try–LOL.
    We are going to a first birthday party for our friend Henry. He is a Bishon Frisee (sp) who is on my walking route and gets treats. What is funny is his “mom” has the exact same treats, but he won’t take them from her. Dogs are adorable. The other day a woman on the blog mentioned that she couldn’t get another dog or cat due to age. I wonder if she could walk just a little in her neighborhood and give them treats. I “own” soooo many dogs–2 Bishons; 1 Yorkie, 1 Austrailian Shepherd, probably 3 Heinze 57’s , 1 that I forgot what breed he is, but he lives in a household of a 2 year old and a 6 year old boy and he is the most gentle big guy! And, 1 standard Poodle. Seeing them makes my exercise of walking lots of fun:)
    Have a great day everyone:) It is going to be 70* here today.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Diane – that’s a good idea – I hope she’s reading this. No, I sorta throw the covers up but this bed inside a box is ridiculously hard to make – nicely. It’s cute but I’ll just be crawling back in it again. It’s in a far back bedroom upstairs that nobody ever sees. You have to pass thru two other rooms to get to it so it is very private – if it needed to be! Haha!! I often think of the next people who will live in my wonderful house – this would be a perfect nursery off the master bedroom with a huge walk in closet between making it quiet.

  62. Tina W in Oregon

    Loved all the comments (so far) today. As I’m writing this, I’m watching the rain/hail mix come down hard. Two days ago we had a great thunderstorm with an inch of hail included. Love those storms! Will be really nice for warmer weather though. I’ve been collecting blue and orange and light colored shirts. One thrift store in town has a sale on Thursday where you can stuff as many things in a bag that will fit for $5. I’m planning on going tomorrow.
    Glad to hear the shot in your foot helped. I hope it lasts for a long time!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Tina – grab 2 bags of shirts!! They’re now $10 each here in North Iowa – I have lots on hand already destructured so I’m good. Blue is the most prominent color available.

  63. joy in NW Iowa

    I am amazed at the beautiful quilts made from old shirts. Yours is beautiful!
    Your foot is not beautiful tho. I am sure happy the shot helped!
    We had a nice shower of rain overnight. The grass looks so pretty. It is furnace weather again. But they said the s word for the weekend! Ugh! Plus chilly and windy! What is is new. Wind wind wind!
    I’ll hide in my cave and try to get something accomplished.
    Arthritis is nasty! And when the weather is changing it likes to warn us! Like you say there are pain medications! Thankfully!
    Happy sewing

  64. Betty Klosterman

    Mary, there is enough sympathy here to last at least a year. Sympathy never hurts, especially from people who know how things can hurt. And taking a walk to visit the neighbor dogs. How much fun for everybody, especially with the little kids. After the Easter storm it was great to watch the 3 neighbor boys just take flying leaps into the big drifts. All the giggling and squeeling was perfect.
    These ladies share their lives. The more things change, the more they stay the same.
    Some quilters are real artists and then there are the rest of us and it doesn’t matter. All our efforts serve a purpose that improves the world — and they don’t need a battery to work.
    Take care, everybody, and keep up your work to help the world.
    Betty in Rapid City

  65. Sunflower from Michigan

    Loved the quilt show pictures! Wow.
    I had a cortisone shot in my foot once, and the doctor told me it wouldn’t hurt…well, of course it did and I moved so the needle came out and I had to be poked again. Holding still for that wasn’t easy. I was so unhappy.
    I have been doing yard work despite the cold weather getting ready for my daughters wedding in July. We have the lawn area graded and raked and ready for seeding. But it’s too cold for that step. I have about 40-50 flats of flowers growing for our flower beds. Takes a bit of time to water every day!! These flowers will also be used for the table centerpieces.
    I covered my sewing machine up as no time for that now. Take care!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Sunflower – that is way too much work!!! Holy cow – I hope you have help. A story comes to mind about a garden wedding. Dad was spraying for weeds and used Roundup by mistake and killed the grass in BIG parts of the lawn. Had to cover those areas with mulch. Mom was not happy.

  66. Patricia E Campbell in AZ

    Oh Mary!! Your poor foot!! Listen, I’ve had arthritis as long as I can remember – it’s not always about old age! My 35 year old daughter had to quit being a hair stylist [& she was fantastic!!!] because the arthritis in her hands and feet is so severe. My niece had it beginning in Jr High. So many ppl are in pain, but it’s an invisible illness! Remember: never judge a book by its cover! I’ve given up cross stitch. 😭 But I won’t give up sewing altogether!!

  67. Margie Braaksma

    I have started purchasing men’s shirts at the local thrift stores. Not really sure how many I need for a lap sized quilt. I guess I’ll get more when I run out.
    I am having a bit of a health scare right now. I had a vascular and heart screening, which I would recommend to everyone, last week. I am in northwest Iowa so they send the CT scan to a radiologist in Sioux Falls. I have a distended aorta. I am 62 and it is very scary. Please include me in your prayers! Thanks! Seeing a cardiologist on Tuesday.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Margie – I am so sorry to hear that! Would a distended aorta be something you’ve had for awhile? Did you have symptoms?

  68. Margie Braaksma

    Yes they say it is slow to develop. I have no symptoms other than an occasional high blood pressure number. But not chronic

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