Posts Tagged: Dandelions on the Wind

Book Club Fun to Celebrate The Quilted Heart

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Do the members of your book club or reading group enjoy reading a series of novellas and spending time with an ensemble cast? If so, Elsa Brantenberg’s Quilting Circle in St. Charles, Missouri, might be a great fit. And I’m happy to say the 1860’s heartland setting lends itself well to having fun with historic Main Street and riverside flair.

For some book club fun, your group may want a themed meeting after each of the novellas, or may choose to save the party for after they have read Ripples Along the Shore, the third and last novella in The Quilted Heart omnibus. Either way, here are some meeting ideas and resources for a Quilted Heart celebration. (more…)

Meet Caroline from The Quilted Heart Omnibus

Meet Caroline from The Quilted Heart Omnibus

Today, I’m featuring the two main characters in Ripples Along the Shore, the third and last novella in The Quilted Heart. After you’ve read The Quilted Heart, read Prairie Song to spend more time with Garrett and Caroline.

MEET Garrett Cowlishaw

Garrett Cowlishaw  is the a friend of Rutherford Wainwright and is in St. Charles to recruit a band of people to travel west to the frontier.

MONA: How would you describe yourself? (more…)

Recipes Inspired by The Quilted Heart

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The Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek novels and Prairie Song, Book 1 in the Hearts Seeking Home Series all feature fun foods and inspire recipes. The novellas, Dandelions on the Wind, Bending Toward the Sun, and Ripples Along the Shore are no different. Enjoy a meal with three recipes inspired by The Quilted Heart omnibus. (more…)

Meet Elsa Brantenberg from The Quilted Heart

Meet Elsa Brantenberg from The Quilted Heart

If you’re familiar with my Historical Fiction, you know that my stories tend to feature a “Titus 2:3” type mentor as a secondary character. In The Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek Series, it was Miss Hattie, the proprietor of a boarding house. In The Quilted Heart novellas,the key woman of influence is Mrs. Brantenberg.

Meet Elsa Brantenberg, who owns the farm where the Saint Charles Quilting Circle meets in The Quilted Heart novellas. By the way, I borrowed my mother-in-law’s birth name for this character

1) How would you describe yourself to others?

A busy widow and Oma to my granddaughter, Gabi, with no time to fuss over what was or could have been.

2) Do you have any favorite pastimes or special skills?

I have lots of experience at running a farm and tending an apple orchard. Some say I’m a fine quilter. Actually talked me into starting a quilting circle and teaching quilting in my home. Most fun I’d had in a long spell.

3) How would the women in your quilting circle describe you?

I’m a hugger. No woman gets past my porch, either direction, without a hug.

4) What is most important to you?

That my sweet little Gabi girl, my granddaughter, grows up knowing she is loved. The assurance that you’re loved and cared for can carry you a long ways.

5) How do you face disappointments in life?

I grit my teeth. Probably stomp my foot. Whisper or  shout a prayer. Then I embroider a tea towel, make apple crisp, or finish a quilt and take it to someone who needs the encouragement even more than I do.

6)  What do you put off doing because you dread it?

Explaining to Gabi that the war has been over for several months, and that if her papa hasn’t returned by now, he is dead. Or alive without any intention of returning.

7) You buried your husband then your daughter, and lost your son-in-law to grief, how did you keep going?

I had a farm to run and a precious granddaughter to raise, and I knew the good Lord was at my side. Always is. It was after I buried Gretchen that I started the quilting circle out here on the farm. Many of those dear women are like daughters to me. A couple of them like sisters.

8) What is the thing you love most about Quilting Circle Thursdays?

The laughter and the tears. The smiles and the sighs. Hearing the other women grow in their confidence to share the Scripture with one another and their commitment to pray for one another.

9) If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

My emotions can swing like the pendulum on that fancy clock at the bank. If I could change, I would not be so passionate. I’d rather my emotions be steady, unwavering. At least, slow enough for my brain to catch up to them.

10) Do you have a life verse, a passage of Scripture that holds special significance to you?

Yes, from Psalm 119:104. “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” I may not always be able to trust my feelings and emotions, or anyone else’s for that matter, but the Word of the Lord is completely and consistently trustworthy.

Thy Word

If you’ve read The Quilted Heart novellas, you’d be doing me a huge favor, if you’d write a review on The Quilted Heart omnibus for amazon.comgoodreads.comchristianbook.combarnesandnoble.com, and novelcrossings.com, and any other outlets you’re familiar with.

Thank you! And Happy Reading.

A Novel Instrument ~ The Zither

Zither Cropped 2

Music played a key role in the 1800s. In patriotism and in the church. In the life of a community. And in family life. Such was the case for Elsa Brantenberg and her household in Dandelions on the Wind, the first novella in The Quilted Heart omnibus.

Sunday evenings after supper is set aside for family music time. Mrs. Brantenberg plays the piano. Her domestic, Maren Jensen, plays the flute and is teaching Elsa’s little granddaughter to play a recorder. But she still longs to hear the instrument left behind by her long-gone son-in-law. A zither. (more…)

Meet Rutherford & Maren from The Quilted Heart

Meet Rutherford & Maren from The Quilted Heart


A broken soldier.

A nearly-blind abandoned bride.

Will love bind their hearts together,

or will stubborn pride unravel the family they both love?

Meet the main characters in Dandelions on the Wind, Novella #1 in The Quilted Heart omnibus!

Now available! Paperback and eBook

Now available!
Paperback and eBook

RUTHERFORD WAINWRIGHT

1. What is your job? Describe a little about what you do.

I was a farmer then a soldier. What I do next, work or otherwise, depends upon how Elsa Brantenberg receives me.

2. How would you describe yourself?

A disappointment. But I’m hungry to change that description. And that reality.

3. What do you need most?

Forgiveness. And a second chance at fatherhood.

4. How do you face disappointments or hardship?

In the past, I ran. Now, I pray. Real hard. And press on.

5. What is your most important goal in life?

To reunite with my little girl. She’d be four years of age now.

6. What are you most afraid of?

That I won’t be given a second chance.

7. If you could travel back in time, where would you go and why?

To the day before my daughter was born. I’d like a chance to do things differently. To do right by her and her grandmother.

8. What do you put off because of dread, or you just don’t want to do it?

Returning to Saint Charles and the farm that had been my home.

9. What is most important to you?

To return to Saint Charles and make sure the daughter I abandoned knows I love her.

10. What do you want others to see in you?

My new dependence upon God for each step.

 

MAREN JENSEN

 1861, March

“To move, to breathe, to fly, to float,

To gain all while you give,

To roam the roads of lands remote,

To travel is to live.”

Maren Jensen’s fondness for Hans Christian Anderson’s romantic musings had waned somewhere in the Atlantic between Denmark and America. Now, weeks later, she sat on another boat, a paddlewheeler steaming up the Missouri River and the poet’s words were taunting her. She’d started the day in the wee hours, stepping off of the train from New York and onto the boat in Saint Louis that had carried her up the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers. Hans Christian Anderson could keep his traveling for himself. All she wanted was a home.

Click here to read the complete PREQUEL scene to Dandelions on the Wind.

Have you read The Quilted Heart novellas? If you did and enjoyed the stories, you’d be doing me a huge favor, if you’d write a review on The Quilted Heart omnibus for amazon.com, goodreads.com, christianbook.com, barnesandnoble.com, and novelcrossings.com, and any other outlets you’re familiar with.

Thank you! And Happy Reading.

Enter to win a trip to St. Charles, the setting for The Quilted Heart

Enter to win a trip to St. Charles,
the setting for The Quilted Heart

 ENTER THE SWEEPSTAKES!

Quilters and Quilts #5 – Kathleen Belongia

Kathleen Belongia Star Quilt Banner

I’m excited to welcome Kathleen Belongia, another quilting reader-friend, to my blog today to give us another peek at quilters and quilts! And I’m seeing stars! (more…)

Quilters and Quilts #1 – Linda Finn

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Several members of my family have quilted or do quilt. My Grandma Irene Shindlebower and Grandma Mabel Gansberg, my Sis Linda, and others. Quilting is one of those historical, generational skills and art forms that delight and fascinate me.

In anticipation of the January 21st release of The Quilted Heart, three novellas in one book, I’m starting a Quilters and Quilts Series, which will feature a guest quilter and quilts every Monday through the months of December and January.

I’ve invited quilter and reader-friend, Linda Finn, to kick off the series. Please share this post with friends and family who enjoy anything to do with quilts and quilting and quilters. (more…)

Happy Birthday, Daniel Boone!

Daniel Boone Home Sign Small

Daniel Boone.

What image does the name evoke? A mountain man wearing a beavertail?

If you answered, a mountain man wearing a beavertail cap, you’re likely a baby boomer or a fan of TV reruns.

Daniel Boone Framed

Daniel Boone’s pioneer exploits made him one of the first folk heroes of the United States. He was born on October 22, 1734 in Birdsboro, Pennsylvania, lived in Kentucky, and then at the age of 65, he moved his wife and several children to Missouri.

The Daniel Boone TV ShowAmerican pioneer, explorer, and frontiersman inspired a TV show bearing his name. Fess Parker starred as Daniel Boone in the historical series that ran from 1963 to 1970, and now enjoys an audience of another generation or two through reruns.

I was a fan of the show, and so was my hubby. I had no idea how deep Bob’s fascination with Daniel Boone and the life of a frontiersman ran until March 2012 when he joined me in Saint Charles, Missouri. I was there researching the area for The Quilted Heart novellas and Prairie Song, Book 1 in the Hearts Seeking Home Series, when we discovered The Historic Daniel Boone Home and Heritage Center in Defiance, about 25 miles west of Saint Charles. (more…)

The Quilted Heart Novellas, 3 in 1

The Quilted Heart Featured Pic

The Quilted Heart novellas only available as individual eBooks?

Not for long!

January 21st, WaterBrook Multnomah will release Dandelions on the Wind, Bending Toward the Sun, and Ripples Along the Shore as a print omnibus–three novellas in one thick book.

In 1999, I’d gone to St. Louis for a conference and a children’s book signing event. On a program-free afternoon, this Arizona girl decided to slide into her rental car and head out for an adventure. I ended up in St. Charles, Missouri. Immediately smitten by its historical Main Street and charming riverside perch, I dreamed of one day setting a story in Saint Charles.

(more…)

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