Thursday, September 28, 2023

Healing with Green


Good morning!

Years ago, we had 3 standard poodles.  If you have a lot of dogs, you can have a problem maintaining grass.  It's just the way it goes.  We decided to put gravel in the little area out back.  It was a good substitute but it was kind of ugly and it made weeding more difficult.  So then I pulled up the gravel and used mulch.  Easier to weed but kind of boring in the garden.

What I was really craving was a place for my eyes to rest.  So about four years ago, I decided to try Irish and Scottish moss in the big area of the upper back yard.  

It never needs to be mown and provides my eyes with the sweet green color.

The moss garden is in front of Scout and was the spindly little grass looking area.  About two years ago.

The maxim about gardening is "First year sleep, second year creep, third year leap."  It took four years but the moss has finally settled in and despite drought and heat waves, has overtaken the garden.

When Kerry passed, Linda told me that she often kept a fleecy type of blanket nearby when she read books.  The feel of the fleece reminded her of stroking her cat.  After Kerry passed, I found the same comfort while weeding the moss garden.  The moss does feel like a poodle coat.

The lighter colored grass is Scottish moss, the darker is the Irish moss.  About the only difficult thing in growing this is keeping the moss weeded.  In summer time it is more difficult because there is so much more sun there but as our planet tilts and the autumn light changes, it is more pleasing to be out there.

It takes a long time to weed the garden and I usually joke with my husband that this is micro-gardening.  I can spend 2 hours weeding the area and only come up with a bucket of weeds (or less).  It's time consuming but restful.

I've heard for decades that green is the color of healing.  Hopefully I will get more time in this garden this weekend if the weather is good.

Tomorrow is Flower Friday and I'm wondering what is going on in your garden.  If you wish to share any photos, please email me at

Have a safe and happy day!

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Wealth couldn't buy quilts...

Happy Wednesday!

A regular syndicated column called "Statistical Sam" ran an interesting article in 1907.  It was an insightful piece that focused on making quilts.

Sam was a man ahead of his time.  He saw the value in women's work and wasn't afraid to enlighten the public.

He started with this statement:

"John D. Rockefeller's wealth couldn't buy 
all the home-made quilts of the United States." 

At a time when society was dismissive about "women's work" Sam put an actual monetary value on it.  In this case, making quilts.  His methodology may not have stood up to the test of current statisticians but his conclusions are interesting.

Of the 15 million families in this country, Sam suggested that each household had at least two handmade quilts.  Because quilt making wasn't as popular, he theorized that each quilt was made by "his mother or her mother."

1908 quilt top
"Home-made quilts are made in spare time.  Quilt making women have little spare time..."  Sam suggested that women would sew when their regular duties are completed, perhaps 30 minutes a day.

Sam suggested that a woman's wages would be about a $1.50 an hour.  He then deduced that the homemade quilts in the U.S. should be valued at $675,000,000.  With Rockefeller's fortune (about a billion dollars), 1/3 of it would be lost as Sam put it, "under the hammer" of liquidation.  Therefore, Rockefeller's billion dollars would not be able to buy all the homemade quilts in the country.

Early 20th century quilt

What is the most interesting part of this story?  How accurate Sam was in appraising quilts--even though he didn't use the methodology of current quilt appraising.  He wrote that each quilt was worth $22.50 in 1907.  That same amount in 2023 is about $734.90.  

In 1907, most quilts were of the full size.  What is the average for a full-sized quilt appraisal in 2023?  How about $700.00 (according to this article).

It seems like Sam could actually understand quilting.  He even wrote that "more love, life, and labor is wrapped up in a homemade quilt than can be imagined".  He went on to state, that in nine out of ten cases, the quilter can recall the fabric and 
"whence it came."

Sam concluded his article by stating, "the intrinsic value of the home-made quilt may not be fully set-down in dollars and cents.  There is sentiment connected with it that money couldn't buy.  Here's to the homemade quilt!"

He even published two large illustrations of quilt patterns:

Here's to you Sam!  👏

Have a safe and happy day!

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Tuesday's This and That: September 26, 2023


Welcome to another edition of Tuesday's This and That!

If you are in the mid-Atlantic, you might want to see a quilt turning sponsored by The Goschenhoppen Historians.  Barb Garrett will be speaking and it should be a fun event:


Jumping to the west, the world's largest quilt is getting a home.  You can read the article here.


C & T Publishing offers a variety of free patterns.  I recently downloaded this pattern which I think looks fun.  It's called Arrow-Dynamic but I think the pattern resembles birds in flight.


Wishing you a safe and happy day!

Monday, September 25, 2023

Autumn Leaves


So we are officially in the autumn season!  Most of the younger generation in our family are ga-ga for autumn.  Some of them even mark the days until autumn as early as the Fourth of July.  Now that we are in autumn, I guess I can drive them nuts by marking down the days until spring (176). 😁

Today there are a lot of autumn themed quilts but most center on leaves.  This was similar to quilt patterns of yesteryear.





In the 1970s there were a lot of orange and brown quilts made and a lot of orange and brown fabric.  It went along with that whole avocado colorways.

But the most favorite thing I found regarding autumn quilts was this poem, no author given:

Autumn Quilt.

You should see the maple tree in our yard
    Aflame with crimson and gold.
I think it looks like a patchwork quilt
Set with pieces gay and bold.

Wishing you a safe and happy day!

Friday, September 22, 2023

Flower Friday: September 22, 2023


Tomorrow marks the first day of Autumn!

Whenever I have a chance, I'm getting the garden ready for it's winter sleep.  Lots of pruning and rearranging.  Meanwhile the bees and butterflies are flitting about getting as much nourishment as possible.  I have to remember to prune my butterfly bushes in mid-summer.  They really come back well when I do!

The Caryopteris is always full of bees and butterflies.  About 30 or more bees sleep on this bush.  I think it's one of the most beneficial bushes to have because it blooms so late in the season.

New bunches of cleome are blooming these days as well:

Wishing you a safe and happy weekend!

Thursday, September 21, 2023

Roses in the Garden and Quilts


The days are getting cooler.  It's that time of year when we decide what we want to keep and rearrange our garden before the first frost of the season.  This fall, I'm removing two more rose bushes.  One tea rose is diseased.   Another is blooming very little because it doesn't get enough sun anymore; the Pee Gee Hydrangea tree has grown so large that it shades the bush too much.

There was a time when I had a whole collection of tea roses in the garden and babied them all through the summer.  One by one they each faded or got diseased and I'm now too old to be messing with them.  The only roses I'll have left are the climbing ones on our front arbor.  Climbing roses seem to resist disease more than any other type (in my experience).

Do you have roses in your garden?

Roses have always been represented in quilts.  Here are a few  patterns from the 1930s that I've collected:


Radiant Rosebuds, 1933:

An interesting take on yo-yo's in 1932:



Are you rearranging your garden this season as well?

Tomorrow is Flower Friday.  Please email me photos you would like to share (  

Have a safe and happy day!

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Batiks 2


Yesterday I talked about my batik project.  While I was working last week, I tried to remember when batik fabric became so popular for quilting.  I think perhaps in the early 2000s.  

But then I found some interesting tidbits--and we all know how I can't resist trivia about fabric.

Batiks were popular during the roaring 20s and perhaps even a few years before.  

1920s dress made of batik



Oh duh.  Suddenly all of the clothes from the early seasons of Downton Abbey make sense.  Some clothes were embroidered and beaded to resemble batiks during that era.  

Batiks were also used for home decorative items like lamp shades and pillows.

There was even a book on how to create batik fabrics.  You can read it here.  It was published in 1920.

Once the Depression hit, batiks were sometimes advertised for home goods but seemed to fade for women.  After World War 2, batik ties were advertised a few places for men.

The fabric became more popular during the wild days of the 1960s but as far as use in quilts, there were only a few articles about quilters using batiks in the 1970s and 1980s--and mostly those were what we would categorize as art quilters.

Wishing you a safe and happy day!

Tuesday, September 19, 2023



Happy Tuesday!

My husband travelled the world for his job before the pandemic.  About 15 years ago, he was sent to Indonesia.  I don't normally ask my husband to bring anything back but I thought some batik fabric might actually be interesting.   I didn't have any in my stash and even wrote post-it notes in his luggage to remind him of the word batik.  

Surprisingly, he did bring me home some fabric.  One piece of cotton that was printed to resemble batik and a lot of thin fabric.  "The lady at the kiosk said you would love this.  It's actual silk!"

I never told him it was polyester.  I thanked him profusely.  Effort counts especially when he normally hates shopping.

I personally was never a big fan of batiks but the younger generation loved those fabrics so I have some in my stash.  Recently, I used some bigger scraps for this quilt.

Last week I wanted a new project and found a pattern I had purchased a while ago called Winterbound.  The pattern is here.  I think I had purchased it for some of my snow fabric but forgot about it.  😕 So I decided it would be a good pattern for batik scraps.  The pattern is paper pieced.  I'm going to make mine scrappy and using up a lot of autumn colored scraps.  I figured I would make this for one of the young secretaries at my husband's office who is always looking out for him when he is on the road.

I'm wondering if you enjoy batiks.  Beth has said to me that she doesn't buy batiks because she doesn't like the feel of the fabric.  Another woman told me the prints are too wild for her and too expensive.

What are your preferences?

Have a safe and happy day!

Monday, September 18, 2023

With thanks...


Thank you friends for all the kind emails and comments about Kerry.  She was a great dog and we miss her so much!

To say last week was a tough week is an understatement.  We lost Kerry on Monday.  On Thursday, we lost a family member in a horrible car accident (if you are local, you heard about it on the news).  And one of my closest friend's daughter is in the hospital fighting for her life.

Brad and a bunch of family members came home and I'm grateful to have my husband here.  I'm also grateful for my neighbors; some are bringing their dogs up for a visit like Yogi and Zora below.

Zora and Yogi

I am returning to blog writing if only to get my mind off things so I'll have posts this week.

Thank you again for your kind thoughts!

Have a safe and happy day!

Wednesday, September 13, 2023



Kerry crossed the rainbow bridge on Monday.

She had been slowing down by the end of last week and on Sunday she became more ill.  She was not in pain but couldn't keep food down and it was clear that the prednisone was no longer working.

She did see all her friends and loved ones on Sunday and on Monday we took her to the vet.  He did say he was surprised she had made it this long.

We all really miss her and it is so sad that this puppy had to leave us at only 3 years old.

I think you will understand that I just need a few days to grieve.  I'll be back next week and wish you a safe and happy week.

Thursday, September 7, 2023

Thursday's This and That: September 7, 2023


If you read my post yesterday, I bet you know I'm a bit confused these days.  After I posted, I panicked and added the usual blurb about Flower Friday.  I've got a lot on my plate and confuse my days right now and that's okay.

Kerry is actually doing well right now, all things considered.  She still wants to go to the park in the morning and even though we don't walk for very long, she gets to see her dog friends.  This could be because she is tired more but also the heat has been awful even early in the morning.  But each day we have her is a gift and she is getting lots of loving.  She is very happy to be living with us.

I've brought the sewing machine down to the dining room.  Last week I bound two quilts and am very happy with the way they look:

My friend Lizzie quilted them and even included bees on this quilt which is for my neighbor Molly who is a beekeeper:

My husband returned home from working in Oklahoma and I'm hoping he will be here through the weekend.  Our guild is having basket bingo and I would really like to go if he is here to care for the puppy.  Fingers crossed he doesn't get sent out!🤞

Even though it's not officially autumn, the garden has that "tired" look these days.  I'm behind on my chores out there and well other things are the priority.

My question for Flower Friday is:  Now that the season is beginning to close, is there anything you wish you had included in your garden?  A color or a plant?  Anything you learned that you loved?  Just wondering....

Tomorrow is Flower Friday so if you want to share thoughts or photos, email me at

Have a safe and happy day!

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Girl Scout Quilts


Happy Monday!

Were you a Girl Scout?

I was.  I started in Brownies and grew up in the organization even becoming a senior.  After I got married, I was even a G.S. leader for a short time until my husband and I moved out of state.

This Baxter/McDonnell motif made me wonder if there were Girl Scout quilt patterns.  There was no explanation with the design in the feature of the above design.

Although I didn't find quilt patterns, there were tons of Girl Scout quilts, mostly done for charity or service:


**A 1939 quilt provided funds for children-sized tables and chairs for the story-telling part of the local library.

**A quilt with tulip flower designs was given to a Children's Home in Fort Worth in 1947.

Some quilts were entered into local fairs:

Above:  These Girl Scouts in Oklahoma won first place in their state fair in 1954.

Some troops made autograph quilts.  The 1945 one below included the autograph of Harry Truman.  The actress Mary Martin not only sent an autograph but embroidered the quilt block for the Girl Scouts in Connecticut.

In 1930, another autograph quilt included the autograph of President Hoover for a troop in Dexter, NY.  The quilt was auctioned off and the proceeds went to help the local GS district. 

The reason that the quilts may have aided as a fundraiser for  the Girl Scouts in 1930 was that the cookies were not yet being sold on a national level.  And then when World War 2 broke out, often the cookies could not be made/sold because of war rationing:

During the war, the scouts switched to selling GS calendars which continued after the war.


My mother said when she moved to Bethlehem, PA, she joined the girl scouts (around 1950) and the sold not only cookies but candy (malted milk balls).

Strange things or the lack thereof:

I've never seen a Sunbonnet Sue in a G.S. uniform.  Wouldn't it be fun to see a Girl Scout Sunbonnet fulfilling different badges?

Have you seen a Girl Scout quilt?

I was never taught to quilt in G.S.  I don't think we did any kind of sewing at all which seems odd.  We could have at least learned to sew our badges on our sash.  Do you have experience in the Girl Scouts that included quilting or sewing?

Some vintage sewing badges:

Have a safe and happy day!