Rivertown and More

Evidently someone posted our quilt Rivertown on FB and now I’ve gotten some inquiries.  I think we probably still own is quilt but I will have to find it and take a picture.  It is a log cabin variation.  We sent a pickup load of patterns to a large garage sale in Des Moines for Planned Parenthood and the rest went to the recycling or the landfill.  I do still have the master copies here and can make you a copy and mail it to you for $10 if there’s a pattern you want.  It won’t have a picture because we sold all the quilts but keep this in mind if you come across a Country Threads pattern that you don’t have and still want.

Here’s a picture from yesterday that I forgot to post.  Just look at that gigantic morning glory vine!  And still not one bloom – so disappointing.


And books – here are some I’ve read this summer that I liked just fine but can’t put them in my top ten.  I read all the time and forget to tell you.  If you’ve read something great, tell all of us.


Gap Creek is an older book so many of you readers have probably already read it but I hadn’t and I enjoyed it a lot.  That is to say, if one can enjoy reading about a couple’s hard life on a farm.


And here’s what’s coming up next.


I’m still working on a lap size version of Wildflowers.  Do you realize Connie is making hers queen size????!!!


Thank you for telling us where you were on 9/11.  Most of us can remember the moment JFK was shot, too.  We have lived history and it’s a sobering reality, isn’t it?

50 thoughts on “Rivertown and More

  1. Eleanor from RI

    I don’t have any morning glory flowers either. That is the biggest vine that I have ever seen!
    Love your version of wildflowers. Very nice.

  2. Cathie Braman

    Oh my goodness! Have a good cup of tea or coffee with you when you read Sylvia Plath!!! Very depressing as I remember it. How about another positive book?!! Rutherford is good and in the same vein as Michener – very detailed but great reads……
    Love your posts and your animal adventures……Cathie

  3. Donna O

    Secrets of the Lighthouse by Santa Montefiore is a good read as is another by her The Beekeepers Daughter. I enjoyed them both. If you like mystery Karin Fossum has several and I’ve read some of them. Mary I do enjoy your blog and life on your farm as well as comments from your fans.
    On 9/11 I had just arrived at work and was waiting for the elevator when a co- worker walks up and told us who were waiting. Somehow we found a tv at work and followed this tragic event. JFK I was in choir class.

  4. Angie Rowland

    On the day Kennedy was shot I was in the 8th grade. Fast forward a friend my same age is dating a guy and she said he seems old but I ask in a round about way but he never tells me how old he is. “Ask him what he was doing the day Kennedy was killed” She did and his response was that he was married and he was out of the army with two kids in School. She said she about DIED. He is OLD, she says. Well certainly older that we are. They stopped dating. I am sure he lucked out in that deal. LONG story but let’s just say, “Lucked out”

  5. Sara Reynolds

    Mary, have you read A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron. It is about a dog who dies and is reincarnated several times. The sequel is A Dog’s Journey by the same author. They are the best dog books I have ever read. I laughed and cried through both books. They are quick reads and I know you will love them. The first one has been made into a movie which comes out in January. I can’t wait to see it!

  6. Lisa Chaplin

    I would highly recommend The Lost Girls by Heather Young. Very interesting ending, I didn’t see it coming. The author’s debut novel.

  7. Sherry Whalen

    Strange to have flowerless morning glories. How about this – I have 2 zucchini plants with plenty of flowers, and not one zucchini! They are all male flowers. I was talking to my neighbor and he was telling me that they planted 1 zucchini plant with plenty of flowers and NO zucchini either! Who the heck can’t get tons of zucchini from their plants – so weird!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Sherry – weird growing season! At the last minute I went to Marigold Days – looked for you.

      1. Sherry Whalen

        Oh no! I’m sorry I missed you – we were there on Saturday from 9 to 4 and then on Sunday we took one of the grands to the parade. Did you get anything good?

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Sherry – no, nothing major good. I was somewhat disappointed in the number of antique vendors versus the huge number of crafters. I’m just not into crafts.

  8. Diana W

    Have you read The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah? One of my top 5 favorite books ever. WWII France, I could not put it down, and when I was done, I cried. I NEVER cry at books, but this one did me in. Then I couldn’t start another book for at least a week.
    On another note, I was chased out of my sewing room by a mouse! I refused to go back in till he had vacated the premises. He did so today (not his choice of exit, I’m sure), so I’m binding a queen size 9 patch for a wedding gift now.
    Hope you dry out this weekend. We’ve had a lot of rain in Des Moines, too!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Diana – the Nightingale does rank in my Top Ten best books ever. I dreamed about the characters and could not stop thinking of the story and the people. I could not get started on another book for quite awhile either – such a powerful story. I just loved it!

  9. Melissa Dotz

    Oh my goodness! I have been looking all over for the Rivertown pattern. It made my day toi find this on your blop post today. There are pics of it on pinterest and a beautiful version of it at Lolly’s Quilt shop in Shipshewana. Please Please let me know how to get one of those $10 copies you said you could make. Thank you so much.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Melissa – send me $10 and request Rivertown. I’ll send you the pattern. It’s just that easy. Address in the blog post.

      1. Gayle Lacey

        Mary, I too would like a copy of River Town. I thought I owned every Country Threads pattern ever printed. I will mail you a check. Thank you! I was in the eighth grade when Pres. Kennedy was assassinated. Very small school, and our janitor told us while we were in the gym. A friend, Connie, and I went outside with him and lowered the flag. Very sad. The world changed that day.

  10. Carol

    Kennedy, I was in seventh grade. I remember being dismissed from school before lunch, I think, we were all sent home. Small Catholic school, everyone walked home back in the day-no busing. You could never do that now -send kids home to empty houses, etc. Anyway, I remember my mother was lying in bed crying, and I really didn’t quite connect yo the grief, too young maybe, and was a little scared to see it.

    Robert Morgan, Gap Creek…loved it and read everything he wrote after that. You might like Adrianna Trigianni’s books….Big Stone Gap, Cherry Holler, Milk Glass Moon, Return to Big Stone Gap…they are a series of the four books revolving around the life of a girl from a mountain/valley town in the Appalachians. LOVED THOSE BOOKS! Also read everything else she wrote, and like those books, too. Anything and everything by Sandra Dallas (Persian Pickle Club etc) and most recently, a few Fannie Flagg books for fast fun reading with a lot of laughs.

  11. Pamela

    My morning glories grew and made flowers in abundance. But only 1 butternut squash from 2 plants. Either blossoms were mostly male or our pollinators have become fewer in number as the time came. Read the land between the Oceans or Our Mrs Brown. Both popular but the former has had an upsurge since the movie came out. Who would have guessed a movie I enjoyed 2 years ago would become a movie? It’s been raining here just as I want to work more outdoors on my DIY furniture projects. But most of this month has been dry so I shouldn’t complain. I guess when you’re dealing with bleeding peptic ulcers you might be excused. I just might order one of your patterns as I inquired about one less than a year ago and never followed up.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Pamela – would that title be The Light Between Oceans?
      Love Adriana T. as well

  12. Kay

    Hi Mary,
    Just finished reading Whiter Than Snow by Sandra Dallas , reading A Quilt for Christmas by her also
    Like all her books. Another one by Bruce Cameron is Emory’s Gift that one is about a bear very good read Like the picture of Becky and the large fern had to show my husband his mother has a fern that is over 100 years old and is that big if not bigger. Her father divided the fern into several pieces for the daughters and hers is the largest of the 3 sisters. It is amazing.

  13. ANITA Fetzer

    Did read Gap Creek some time ago. Just finished a wonderful book, The Kitchen House and the sequel Glory Over Everything by Kathleen Grissom. Fabulous read. Anita

  14. Ellen Sharp

    I am reading Girl On A Train…really good….One of my favorites is The Chaperone…read it a couple of years ago, one of my all time favorites!! Also, love any WW2 novels….the Kommants Girl, The Soldiers Wife, The Nightingale are all excellent…please try the Chaperone, and let me know what you think!!

  15. LeAnn Keenan

    My husband gave me the book by Fredrik Bachman last Christmas — My Grandmother Wanted Me to Tell You She’s Sorry (or close to that — I’m too lazy to get up and actually check). And I LOVED it. Then I read his book A Man Called Ove, and I LOVED that more. Then Britt Marie Was Here. His characters are wonderful misfits who you come to love as the book goes on. Those are my new favorites this year.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      LeeAnn – I have read the first two books you mentioned but not the last one – great books! Not top ten – but very good!

  16. Donna Sproston

    I am reading the latest Louise Penney mystery. I love the characters. One of my favorite books of all time is an oldie from the 90s. It is Skywater by Melinda Worth Popham. As an animal lover, you would find it a great read.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Donna – I know I won’t like the mystery series but I will definitely get Skywater – thank you!

  17. Lee

    When Kennedy died I was in high school. It was the saddest weekend ever.
    911 was so shocking… Saw it from the beginning. We were in N.C. Daughter in Va. Daughter in Az. And son in Maryland. We all took turns calling and talking as the story evolved. My son said the F16 fighter planes were so low you would see the pilots. Never forget!
    About Robert Morgan who wrote GapCreek… Love everything he has written. He writes the way women think. The Hinterlands is my favorite. Can get it on Amazon.

  18. Malynda Reed

    I attended the Country Living Fair in Columbus yesterday. It was so hot and so crowded almost 90. That is where i first met you and The Goat Gazette 6 years ago. Time flies by but i enjoy reading all about your life in Iowa. I bought a Halloween small square table quilt from you one year. I put it on top of an antique table every fall ! Love it! No one at the Fair had anything close to what you make! I can’t imagine how much work that was to pack up and travel to Columbus, set up, deal with all those customers for three days, then take everything down and travel back to Iowa. I’m not sure how many other shows you did but that was a huge undertaking. You go Girl!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Malinda – it was such a huge undertaking! The first year we were there was the year Hurricane Ike came through on Sunday. Oh, what a mess. I would love to attend the fair sometime just for fun but I think it has changed a lot. It was the biggest show other than Quilt Festival in Houston and Chicago and we worked for months preparing. We met so many great folks – many who still keep in touch.

  19. donna j

    I can’t recommend any books because I read (listen) to the books you all review! Although, the very next book I’m going to read is “Alexander Hamilton” by Chernow. When the book arrived in the mail, I was expecting a 1″ sized book. It turned out to be almost 2″ thick! And small print. but we are going to NYC to see the musical “Hamilton” and we are so excited! So I have to relearn a whole bunch of Revolutionary America so I know what is going on and can just enjoy the songs and action. It was such a shame that Hamilton died so early.

    Gardening….I grow flowering weeds.

    Rivertown….I’m going to have to go back thru your posts and see the quilt again as I can’t picture it.

    JFK assasination…I was in 3rd grade, so 8 yrs old, and attended a Lutheran parochial school. The principal came to the door and talked to the teacher. She then came back to the front of the class with tears down her cheeks and told us what happened. We then ended and all went home. We didn’t have school again until after the funeral. But when we got home that day, my mom was just sitting in the chair in tears, too. I’d never seen my mom cry before and it really got to me. We spent the next few days glued to the TV. The funeral was so somber and our big city was once again so quiet.

  20. Paula

    When Kennedy died I was at school can’t remember grade. 9/11 I was at work and my husband called me. I am going to look up the pattern you are talking about. Also I have a pic to show you how much I loved reading the Goat Gazette. I will look to see if I still have your personal email address. I think you will like it.
    Paula in KY

  21. patti leal

    9/11 found me in my quilt studio upstairs, when i got a phone call ‘turn on your tv now!’ only to see the second plane hit. glued to the screen and working on dear jane blocks with the friend who called. when jfk was shot, i was in the 8th grade in texas geography class. never will i forget either one. love reading your blog, patti in florida

  22. ellie

    I have a suggestion for those flowering zucchini, take the flowers, 2-3 per servings and make fried squash blossoms. Delicious. Might as well get something from them.

  23. Ann Barlament

    Wow..So many books, thanks to all of you I’ve created another list of books to read.
    This month has been stressful, looking for Independent living or Assisted living as I’m wheelchair bound. To get rid of my stress, I dive into a book…usually historical fiction, but really anything that sounds interesting. If it doesn’t capture my attention in the first chapter, it gets deleted from my Kindle!

    This month’s reading – Beverly Lewis – The Photograph and Child of Mine; Bette Lee Crosby – Baby Girl, What the Heart Remembers, The Loft, and Memory House; Mail Order Kid by Marilyn June Crosby; N. W. Harris – Enslaved, The Last Orphans and The Harvest; Ice by Kevin Tinto; Catherine Ryan Hyde – Where We Belong and Worthy; G. P. Ching – Grounded, Charged, Wired; Hello Love by Karen McQuestion; Orphan #8 by Kim van Alkemade.

    Next up…Loving From Afar by Mona Ingram followed by 3 more books.

    When I hear about your gardens not producing flowers or not producing food, I wonder if you have bees? Without the pollinators…No food gets produced. My cousins have bee hives that their son from Iowa takes care of. In fact, he will rescue hives if you need. He also rents out hives to Iowan farmers.

  24. Martha Engstler

    Always look forward to your blogs. Great book list from so many folks. Someone mentioned making a disappearing nine patch for a wedding gift. I’m getting ready to do the binding on one as a Christmas gift with Christmas fabric. She is a real Xmas freak so I know she will love it. She gives so much at the holidays it’s hard to give her anything.

  25. Nancy Alexander

    I highly recommend A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. It is the first one in her All Souls trilogy. I plan on reading The Nightingale next.

    Mary, did you ever sell the pattern for the wedding quilt you made for your wedding? The bride and groom and the flag on top. I love that quilt. I will have to go look for the Rivertown quilt. I can’t place it in my mind’s eye.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Nancy – the wedding quilt hangs in the porch – yes, we sold many patterns and I have the master. I’ll show it on the blog this week.

  26. Deborah grisanti

    Hope you can help me. Looking for your Wild Turkey pattern #530.Will you please let me know if it’s still available. Thanks, debbie

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Deborah – yes, Wild Turkey is available. Send $10 to Mary Etherington, 2345 Palm Ave. Garner, IA 50438

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