around the frame apr 2015 – our experiences

Hi Frances,

Just a note to let you know I’m sauntering through the March edition of Ninepatch, savoring the morsels as I mosey along. 

I read Sandy’s story (Mar. ’15) about climbing the Annapurna Circuit at 18,000 feet. At that elevation today, I’d probably be flat on my back! But, fifty years ago it would have been high adventure!

In our back yard, where the squirrels normally jump their way between trees, I see a trail to our big maple tree that appears to have been made by a squirrel wading through the snow. That’s a first!  

Thanks, Frances!


Simon Stargazer

Simon Stargazer III (Mar. ’15 and also see FABRICS for his own mountain adventure.) After several warm days, he adds, “Three Great Things about Snow:

1. Watching it fall.

2. Playing in it.

3. Watching it go!”


Constant snow

Constant snow

Hi Frances!

Just read my March ‘15 Ninepatch. I liked the new format and enjoyed all the articles and photos.

Myself, I spent nearly a month with flu and we have had below-zero weather and /or snow constantly.

I have been dreaming some lately, but really just daydreaming about coming to Florida. I know the weather warmed up there! (Ha, Ha!)

Thank you so much for all your hard work and sharing Ninepatch.


Carolinelee (Jan. ‘15) says, “When I am able to visit my daughter in your town, I will get in touch–would love a get together!”



I enjoyed your Feb. ‘15 “Invitation” article. Glad you got to the luncheon. Lot of

planning on your part and also synchronization –life working out.

I had a good morning of pickleball.  It sure helps my attitude and energizes me.  Besides playing the sport, I saw a new integrative doctor. After tests, she put me on a diet. I miss cheese, but luckily, the diet will be over in about six months!

You asked if I have seen a robin yet. No, but the dark-eyed Juncos are here all winter.  They are primarily ground feeders.  

Bluebirds are my favorite. They’re also here all winter, but I only see them when I put out the mealworms –which I do most days. (I don’t like the robins so much. They chase bluebirds away.  Both like mealworms.)

Good luck with all your planning.  I’m seeing it all going smoothly.


Dottie (Oct. ‘14) adds, “I also bought a new pillow to help night neck pain. It worked immediately.”


Good day to you, Frances:

Bill and I are in Florida.  I have started every day here with tears and depression.  I’m not sure what is wrong with me. Bill and I are not getting on very well, although we are trying.  

I will be in North Florida about a week and then we are moving the travel trailer to the panhandle.  I have a very small window of opportunity to see you.

We got down here later than I had hoped and now all I feel is this terrible, overwhelming sad-ness. The worst part is I thought I would feel good! I just feel so lost to myself right now.  So stuck.  

I’m hoping that you won’t be offended if I don’t see you on this trip.  I’d like to bring some joy on my visit with you and I don’t have it right now.  

Pray for me, I need it very badly.


Linda Rosenthal (Mar. ‘15) adds, “My state of mind is better than when I first wrote the letter. Perhaps it was the stress from the trip, but it feels like more. I saw some it in my sorrow. I’m going to work on it.”


Hi Frances,

My eyes are bleary from a night of not enough sleep. The mountain of appointments keep mounting. But, I have added a new and happy element to my busy life: voice lessons.

I have a keyboard, which comes in handy for practice sessions in between weekly lessons. My good friend Jane is my teacher and lives just three houses away. She has been in the music world all her life. She loves opera, plays the violin beautifully and has taken me on as a challenge, I think. I am someone who has always been embarrassed to sing even, “Happy Birthday.”

Jane encouraged me for the last few years to take lessons from her. Today I had my fourth lesson. My repertoire consists of vowels, breathing correctly and where to place my tongue. I find I also have to learn to read notes and to know what three flats means. It is not easy. But, I do practice.

Last week I got out a sound which shocked both of us it was so wonderful–one note mind you!

Love to you,


Louise (Mar. ‘15) says, “Read, The Art Forger by B.A. Shapiro.  You won’t be sorry!


Dear Frances,

You ask if I have seen any robins. No, not yet. I do remember the sight of a robin being very special when I was a kid in elementary school. It still is–especially after a long hard winter. Robins mean springtime.

My brother, Bill, and his wife have helped me a lot. They take me back and forth to work, to get groceries, to family gatherings and on vacation. Now, I am back in contact with my brother, David, and his wife. I went to church with them last Sunday. (I plan to go with them every Sunday I don’t have to work.) It feels good.

When I was with my ex-, he kept me to himself. Now I am enjoying my family again. I lost so much time. I am thankful for what I have.

Take care, and God bless you.

Love and prayers.


LindaSue (Mar. ‘15) adds, “I’m looking forward to plans with my brothers this summer.”


Hi Frances,

Spring is here in the US Northwest! In terms of spiritual adventures, I am really enjoying the spring flowers.

My intent is to be fully present in my body as often as I can be. When I realize I’m zooming ahead or dawdling behind, I try to remember to take deep slow breaths to come back to now.

Spring in the US Northwest

Spring in the US Northwest

I recently re-read The Color Purple by Alice Walker, It’s perhaps thirty years since I read it the first time. What an inspiring book! I remembered it as a story about two sisters who were separated, but I now find it to be a very spiritual book.

The characters often speak about finding God in what gives them joy. Even the villainous Mr. has a spiritual awakening!

My favorite part of the story is after all their adventures and coming to peace with each other, the three main characters, Celie, Mr., and Shug, sit on the porch sewing quilts.

I hope all is well with the whole Ninepatch family.



KarenLouise (Nov.’14) adds, “You may or may not be aware of it, but author Alice Walker mentions a ninepatch quilt block in The Color Purple!”


Dear Fritzie,

Did you go out to eat for your birthday? We did for mine. I always look forward to that.

I have been talking to my grandson, Bryce, and asking for some advice from him.  He found his dad who has been living on the streets. He kept track of him as best he could when he was living here.  Now that Bryce is in Florida, he can’t do that.

I am really considering searching for my son.  I would like to park my car and walk around some of the areas where Bryce saw his dad.  The Faith Mission will probably be where I start. 

I just want to know if he is okay.  I also plan to go see the detective who was helping us find Bryan when Bryce put his dad on the Missing Persons list. 

I will talk to Bryce about my plans and see what he says.
Talk to you later.


Patricia (Mar. ‘15) adds, “Now my birthday is over, my next celebration will be our anniversary. We will be married nineteen years this June. Doesn’t seem possible.”


Slowing down

speeds up time.

James (Mar. ‘15) explains, “The slower one does things, the longer it takes and the quicker, the day is over.”


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