Ninepatch is the monthly publication of a non-profit organization by the same name. In the pages of this Ninepatch magazine, women – and the men who support them – share their spiritual journeys and life experiences through letters, essays, poetry, book reviews and more. Ninepatch offers a forum where contributors can be heard and enjoy an atmosphere of sharing and acceptance. Such sharing is vital in helping everyone find their place in an eternal spiritual circle where all know and are known.

Betsy’s open door




American robin

American robin


Robins! A few should have made it to you Northern and Western folks.  According to my Birds of America, American robins live all over the United States and parts of Canada. They migrate seasonally north and south.

Nearly a month ago a flock of about a hundred red-breasted birds (all male according to my husband) dropped into our front yard for a snack. They did not go to any of the neighbors, just us.

Why? Our front yard is totally mulched!  Under layers of oak leaves and cypress chips are lots and lots of juicy bugs!

The birds hopped around about forty minutes, then took to the air again. Robins are large birds and do not fly very fast. Still, by now most of you will have seen at least one!

I remember one March morning when I was a kid in Goshen, Indiana’s Third Grade.  I had finished my schoolwork. While others still met in reading groups or pushed pencils across workbook pages, I stood at the windows gazing out on the lawn, still mostly brown.  When I spotted my first robin of the year I cried, “There’s a robin!”

(Having taught Third Grade myself, I doubt Mrs. Payne appreciated my outcry and the commotion when several other students joined me at the window ledge!)

The bird was a sign of hope! Spring was near. Cold and snow would soon end!

May this little robin story and memory help YOU hold on to hope!


Frances Fritzie

Frances Fritzie



Ninepatch Birthdays


Palma 11

Frances 20



Ninepatch is updating our web site and looking for additional writers. We want weekly bloggers, monthly comments and occasional small pieces. We are even thinking about short stories!


Contact Editor, Frances.


Ninepatch is a non-profit. Every person who works for us– including Frances—is a volunteer. No one is paid. However, we do have business expenses. Paper, ink, software, labels, and Internet connections, are a few.

While e- readers see color, our paper readers seldom do. It’s too expensive. Yet, due to mailing costs and postage, they bear the brunt of “donation-for-service.” (Financially speaking, E- readers ride their coat-tails.)

If you enjoy reading our magazine and have not already made a donation for 2016, kindly consider making one. $5 is not too small.

We have a Paypal account, or you can send a check to our mailing address:

1014 NW 52nd Ter.

Gainesville, Fl. 32605

Thanks to those of you who support our outreach though coin-of-the-realm, service and prayers. Special thanks to our Board of Directors: Christa and Georgene, our membership coordinator: Dottie, our proofreaders: June and James and the sticky note writers: Leigh, James and Georgene. We appreciate their service.

Of course, you who contribute letters, stories, poems and drawings are the lifeblood of the newsletter and we are especially thankful for you!

Those who give in any way know the greatest return. Hence the old saying, “You reap what you sow.”

Editor, Frances


black and white sketch of tulips