It’s Frosty Out There

Sunday morning, Valentine’s Day, we woke up to -11 degrees F with a wind chill of -33. This morning it was  only -11 with no wind. Tomorrow it is going up to 50. If this weather roller coaster is a crazy ride for us, I can’t imagine how the trees and plants are going to respond.

We have three walls of windows and have winter curtains made out of Warm Window fabric. It is like a blanket for the window. You cut the fabric, put a decorative cover fabric on it, and attach. If you live in cold country, have single pane windows or ones that need to be replaced, you might want to check it out. It insulates so well, the windows ice over. Questions? Feel free to ask.


When it’s cold I bake. It’s my theory that I need to bake so the heat from the oven adds warmth. Sounds good to me. Plus, if you’ve got to stay inside, you might as well have plenty of dessert. I made chocolate cake with vanilla frosting and a berry pie using raspberries and schwartzenberries* that we picked last summer and froze.

Last week, I made two pillows to match my paper piecing and quilt colors, finished my small rag quilt, and I read James Patterson’s “NYPD Red 4” and moved on to Michael Connelly’s “The Poet.”


During the cold, I’ve been thinking gardening. I’ve signed up for the MG Annual Conference in March, am looking over my order list for Stout Oak Farm’s organic veggie seedlings, and am really laboring over the Strafford County Conservation District plant sale order form. I’m also starting a blog for my local MG group. So, I’m gardening – it is just all mental. 🙂

What’s going on in your world this Presidents’ Day, and please tell me it is warm and sunny.


*Baker Creek Heirloom Rare Seeds:  Blackberries (Scjhwartzenbeeren) 

(Solanum nigrum) 75 days—Also called “blaubeeren.” Attractive 2- to 3-foot plants yield clusters of pea-sized black berries. Brought to Kansas by Volga German immigrants about 1875, and still appreciated by their descendants, who grow and use them in such traditional recipes as Kuchen, Maultaschen, Klump and Knebel . (Eat only fully ripe, dark blue-black berries showing no green.)

We brought out original seeds from Kansas when we moved. If you want seeds let me know because I have plenty to share. 🙂



About Judy @ NewEnglandGardenAndThread

Master Gardener who enjoys gardening, quilting, photography, and traveling.
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44 Responses to It’s Frosty Out There

  1. Makes me cold just thinking about -11 degrees!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. derrycats says:

    We’re not quite as cold in PA – down to 6 degrees Sunday and a couple days of misery ahead and then up to the 40s. It is hard to get the body to adjust to all the changes this winter. I can never quite get used to the cold since it doesn’t stick around long enough.


    • This winter has required your coats to be on a revolving rack. One day you need winter gear and the next day you need a spring jacket. I’m glad you haven’t had this wicked cold, and let’s look ahead to 40’s and 50’s. I think we’ll both like that better. 🙂


      • derrycats says:

        We had the cold…it was not fun! Especially when you’re a pet sitter and you have to work anyway. But spring will come eventually, right?

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Joyce says:

    Your house is so pretty! And those quilts – and desserts! – are a perfect warming touch! I wonder if the temp is so cold now because the politicians have taken their “hot air” and moved on? Bet you are glad to see them go!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Laurie Graves says:

    Beautiful work! And cake and pie sound exactly right on cold days. Love the word “blaubeeren.” We have insulated shades—alas, not homemade—that make our windows ice over, too. Ah, winter!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. joey says:

    It’s been cold and snowy here as well. Today is much warmer and we might go sledding. I say might, because I’d much rather stay home, read, and bake banana bread 🙂
    I love the rag quilts. I still haven’t tried one, although we seem to have collected many rag quilt gifts.
    Never heard of that fabric. Nice to know.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Dan Antion says:

    -11 here too, yesterday and today. We curled up in front of the woodstove and debated whose turn it was to take the dog out. Maddie doesn’t seem to understand that she doesn’t have a winter coat, despite the fact that we’re always putting our on. Baking sounds like a good winter thing to do.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I watched a neighbor across the road trying to get her two dogs to do their business over the weekend. She was dancing around, stamping her feet, and I could only imagine how cold she was. So, it made me wonder if Maddie liked the cold as well as the snow. I just finished a piece of that berry pie with a cup of hot coffee, and it is a very good winter thing to do. Speak to the editor. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dan Antion says:

        Mmmm piiiiiiiie. That sounds soooo good. Maddie loves the snow and doesn’t seem to understand what cold is. Sometimes, we have to take her on a leash. I took her out yesterday morning to play ball. The ball hit one of the log racks and some ice fell off of it. She started playing with the ice, laid down in the snow and started chewing on it – while it was -10. It almost made my head explode.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. sue says:

    The weather folks pulled out the polar vortex card but I think they just were disappointed no drama here this winter…was 0° wind chill felt like -15 ..a little snow today, what we call lake effect. Whatever it still needs a shovel. A blessing this winter after the last two yrs. Looking for 50° on weekend! Plants send shoots, bam freeze and snow or rabbits..think the weeds will win this year. Not artistic or crafting, my sister got those genes. I’m working with my daughter on genealogy, family history. Doing some care giving for family and volunteering. Working on book sale at library.
    Sounds like you’re keeping out of trouble with time left over to read. Beautiful quilting. I’m off to bake some muffins. My Irish auntie wants me to try scones.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Now, genealogy is a topic we could get going on. I’d very much like to pursue that and told myself I was going to take advantage of the library’s resources. I haven’t done it yet. Care giving and volunteering comes from the heart, and I applaud your efforts. Muffins are good but scones cause my taste buds to perk right up. I do love a good scone with a fresh cup of coffee. Yum. If your Irish Auntie passes along a good scone recipe, please share. 🙂 Stay warm.


  8. HI Judy, wish I could say it’s warmer down here in the “south”, but, no, we have the same weather as you. I have three insulated shades that we bought at Lowes yestereay that ready to hang in my living room windows. Just have to get that project done! We’ve had a nice weekend of family, food and a few projects… I love winter and even winter gardening… the planning and quiet time is fun! Stay warm for a few more hours, 50 is on it’s way! xo

    Liked by 1 person

  9. That frost is beautiful!

    Thank you for the Warm Window link and suggestion. That’s exactly what I need on several windows in my place.

    Cheers to baking and staying warm and cozy!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Eliza Waters says:

    It sure has been cold, and tomorrow spring-like temps will prevail. What crazy weather!
    How do you attach your window covers? We probably should have something like that in our living room, which has large windows. We have a Window Quilt on our north facing slider onto the deck and it works well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I chose not to make roman shades because I take them down in the summer. So, I sew the warm window fabric to the fabric of choice (right side to right side) on the sides, turn, hem the top and the bottom. You can put any kind of trim on you want at that point. Then I sew a strip of velcro (non sticky) to the top and attach sticky velcro to the window trim. I attach it and then decide how I want it to pull up and where. I sew plastic rings to the curtain and screw cup hooks to the sides or top of the window. Then it can come down to entirely cover the window at night or during bad weather and then you can lift it and hang it on the hooks by the rings. Make sense? If not, I’ll answer any questions you have or send you photos. I buy the Warm Window from Joann fabric using a 50% coupon because it is about $25 a yard, but once you look at it, you’ll know why.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. The weather’s been crazy here, too. I also love to bake and am headed to the kitchen in a minute to make scones for my neighbors who snowblowed our driveway while we were watching a movie. 🙂 My soil has been heaving like crazy and I had to shove some plants back in after they’d been pushed out. Even though I mulch in the fall, in my moist areas by the rain garden, they heave anyway and I had to add an emergency layer of straw to protect them. Argh!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, I’d sure like your neighbor, and scones it would be for clearing my driveway. 🙂 That’s interesting about the most areas by the rain garden. Up here, we have what they refer to as frost heaves, but we see it mostly in the roads and not so much in the garden beds. Fingers crossed everything makes it with the extra straw. By the way, I love your dead plant list. LOL


  12. Garden Crafter says:

    Love your quilting and uplifting attitude despite the depressing weather outside. If you think those blackberries would like a Kentucky climate (zone 6-7) I’d love to give the seeds a shot.

    Liked by 1 person

    • These little berries are tough. They would do fine in your zone. They grow about 18-24″ tall and are like small individual plants. They get white blossoms, the fruit is green at first, and then it turns purple/blue. They look like a very small blueberry but do not have a tart taste but have more seeds inside. They die out in the cold and some come back and sometimes you just put a few more seeds in and up they come. I have one that comes up every year sticking through a side hole in my compost bin. It has the largest berries. LOL My husband loves them in pies, turnovers or in anything because he grew up eating them. If you want some, just drop me an email (contact page on blog) and I’ll gladly drop some in the mail to you.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. quilt32 says:

    It’s cold here in southwest Ohio (not as cold as where you are) with 4 inches of snow on the ground. I’ve been knitting and yesterday made my traditional Cherry Fudge Pie in honor of both Valentine’s Day and President’s Day. Love to read what others have been doing.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. reocochran says:

    Your projects are beautiful, Judy. I like your paper project, the burgundy or wine colored pillows that really pull the quilt and table tray together. ♡ Very pretty and your two quilts look so cozy. I like reading the same style of books. 🙂 Cold weather “invites” and “entices” the baker within myself to come our and bake. I love chocolate cake with vanilla buttercream frosting and the fruit dessert sounds scrumptious, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Grandma Kc says:

    I wish we had that window covering back when I lived in Michigan. I think it would have helped! I do wish I could share some of my sunshine. It is currently 90 degrees, it got up to 91 but has fallen back. By Friday we will be down to 71. I know that is still warm but you’re so right about the crazy up and downs we are having lately. My plumerias are so confused!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Nancy says:

    It’s warm here in AZ! Sending warmth your way!
    Now I am hungry for pie!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. germac4 says:

    I like the way you bake, sew and read in the winter……it makes sense to just stay inside and enjoy…good for you! I’m going to try that in winter too, I have a pile of books a mile high!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Love the rag quilt! Well it is warm and sunny SOMEWHERE, right? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I so agree, when its cold…straight to the kitchen I go!!! Stay warm my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Oh my goodness, I already turn nice warm and fuzzy with all this cozyness, just what the doctor ordered on these bleak cold days…xo JOhanna

    Liked by 1 person

  21. treadway says:

    I need some of your energy!!! We had cold but not that cold…over the weekend. Then yesterday and today was in warm and snow melting.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. KerryCan says:

    Our weather, in upstate New York, has been just as odd and mercurial as yours! So, yes–we stay inside and work on pretty things–I got more dishtowels off the loom. Your world sounds like a little cocoon of good things!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. pommepal says:

    What strange weather the world is experiencing. We are in a heat wave and reading about your weather made me feel cooler till you mentioned baking. Oh my in these temps over here I just buy all my cakes and biscuits and it is a constant diet of salad.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. You are always so productive Judy, and such pretty pieces😊Those window covers sound so cozy….perfect for this cold weather….as well as baking when the temp drops I also love to light the coal fire😊

    Liked by 1 person

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