Book Reviews

Fallen by Linda Castillo – Book Review

As always, Linda Castillo does not disappoint. I have read all the novels in the Kate Burkholder series – twice now – and each is better than the last. Castillo’s way with words, her twists and turns in every story, and her distinct characters keep me coming back for more. Linda Castillo is an author on my “pre-order” radar – as soon as I know a new novel is coming – I’m sold without hesitation.

In this latest novel, Fallen, I fall even more in love with the main character Kate. She is an amazing, fully fleshed-out character full of life, attitude, and grit. I have enjoyed her growth as a woman. She is independent, fierce and wickedly smart, and humorous to an extent.

You will find bits of sweet and gentle romance, leaving your mind to wander where it will.

All of Castillo’s novels in the Kate Burkholder series can be read in any order, in my opinion, and they can fully ensconce the reader in the life of a female police chief protecting her beloved town in an Amish community.

Kudos Linda Castillo, I look forward to reading many more of your novels in the future!

Book Reviews

The Girl Who Could Breathe Under Water – Book Review

The Girl Who Could Breathe Under Water by Erin Bartels

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Stunning. This book is incredible. The way in which this book was beautifully crafted in telling a story is amazing, delicious and stunning. This novel is about a few topics I myself have never experienced and I thank God for that. It has not only opened my eyes to real issues in our world but also has given me a bigger perspective of a writers life. Erin Bartels is a master of storytelling. Applause to you Mrs. Bartels and I cannot wait to read more of your work!



View all my reviews

Life In The Mountains

First Snowfall of 2022

It’s a beautiful morning in my world. The first snowfall of 2022 started midday yesterday and continued throughout most of the night. It’s absolutely magical right now.

I almost didn’t want to step outside, so as not to disturb all that beautiful powdery snow on the ground!  The pups soon made paths around the yard and enjoyed the winter wonderland.

And now it is snowing again. I’m happy to be safely snuggled up inside my home near the woodstove, putting pen to paper today. I’m all snowed in and will not be able to get off my mountain for a few days and I’m 100% fine with that.

Quilting

NaNoWriMo 2020…….

National Novel Writing Month started off with a bang for myself this morning. 5,506 words written. Those characters are coming alive!!

Just 45,000 more words to meet my goal for the NaNoWriMo competition.

Badges earned today!!
Other badges earned today! You go girl!

Coffee, soft instrumental music, the dogs keeping me company as I typed away and a beautiful fall view out the window as I worked.

I got this! 😎

Quilting

Time For A Change……

Greetings, from Wild Wonderful West Virginia!

I haven’t written on this blog for some time. Those of you who followed me on FaceBook and Instagram – pretty much the same. I had taken a break from all social media. I had been checking in and reading things here and there, but I didn’t post.  The QuiltersRidge page on FaceBook has already been shut down and my personal page will remain.

My life has changed in so many ways in the last five years. Some good, some sad, some horrific changes, and some so absolutely fantastic moments in the past five years —- but all have led me to where I am today. I still love living in the mountains. I’m still doing a little sewing here and there, for myself personally.  I will no longer be designing for the public. 

My website offering all of my published designs will be closed by mid-November. Any designs of mine will only be offered on Etsy.com as PDF downloads.

This blog is in the process of transferring over to my new website. I’ll post the new link here when it is ready and I invite all my friends and post followers here on the blog to come and visit my new landing spot.

While quilting will always be a part of my life, I need a change. I have had a burning desire for something different. I will be using my new website and blog to share my journey to becoming an author. Sure, I’m already an author as some of you know, I have several published quilting and/or rug hooking books already, 

and I’ve been blessed to be a part of a few collaborated books that have been published…..

Warm Up To Wool
The Splendid Sampler 2
Scrappy Quilts

and I’ve been so fortunate that my designs were chosen to be published through the years by two of the best magazines in the Quilting Industry….. here’s a few from American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine and also Primitive Quilts and Projects! (to see all my designs that were in these two excellent magazines you can follow this link to my website, while it’s still available online — Quiltersridge.com

Heartspun Friendship, June 2019, American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine
Mama’s Leftovers Summer 2019 – Primitive Quilts and Projects Magazine
Blue Moon of Kentucky, August 2007 – American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine
Two Piece Puzzle, April 2010 – American Quilting and Patchwork Magazine
Cinnamon and Nutmeg February 2009 – American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine
Sew Many Strips – April 2019 American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine

but I have a story to tell — several actually. To be honest, I’ve always had a story to tell. I’ve always had a quizzical and adventurous mind. Always asking why and what if. Always imagining characters and stories to go along with my quilt designs.

I have always loved reading – almost every genre. I’ve enjoyed adventures through the words of some fabulous authors. I’ve learned new things. I’ve met a few authors. 

My What If — is now leading me to write my own novels and adventures.  Actually, I have been writing on the first novel in the series for a few months now and I’m enjoying my time creating wonderful characters in a world partly imagined and but mostly real. The setting of my first (in a series)  novel is here in West Virginia, a small wonderful town named Lewisburg in Greenbrier County. My main character Grace, has found herself moving back to her childhood home in Lewisburg and her journey is…….well, I’ll tell you more about that later!

I have no publisher, no agent, no nothing at this time except a document with thousands and thousands of words. I’m so very excited and curious about where this next adventure will lead me.

Won’t you join me on my journey to becoming a published author? The year 2021 will be the year I search for an agent who can represent me and find a publishing house that will be a perfect fit for my novels.

I will post links to my new website soon. The blog will be on the webpage and I’ll post on it every now and then. I will be doing an overhaul on my Instagram and Facebook accounts also. 

I hope you will continue to follow me. I have so much to share. You’ll be invited into my world, I’ll share photos of my cabin in the mountains and the little town I now call home….

Ariel View of Kermit, WV – my town – I live way over to the left in the photo in the mountains!!

the gorgeous views I have from my mountaintop home,

Big Laurel, Kermit, WV

share my writing space, probably still share quilting adventures and projects I’ll work on for myself. There’s my gardening to share. I love to cook — so don’t be surprised by recipes I may share with you that are some of my favorites!

My fur children, Dalilah and Daisy (the dogs) who share their home with Hank and Hazel (the cats).

Winter of 2019
Fall of 2020

I’ll for sure be sharing tons and tons of photos around Lewisburg and surrounding towns in Greenbrier County —  and probably some historical facts.

I’ll introduce you to Grace and probably Jake, and of course, you have to meet Aunt Lou and Uncle Joe. Then there’s Walt – oh my he’s a character you won’t want to miss and you’ll never forget him. And then there’s sweet Mary with a heart of gold and Miss Wanda who tells it like it is and has the most hysterical spinster life……….But I’ll just stop there for now. Oh, but I cannot wait for you to meet them all!

*********************************

Be nice to me or you’ll be in my next book!
(I just love this quote!!!)

Quilting

Splendid Sampler 2 Day!!

Welcome to our blog! Today is my day on the Splendid Sampler Sew-a-Long and above you see my block, Majestic Mountains which can be found on page 33 of the Splendid Sampler 2 book!
I’ve enjoyed quilting along with everyone on the Splendid Sampler group on Facebook for the past several months and hope each of you has enjoyed yourself also!
I love being surrounded by beauty and peace. That beauty includes gorgeous fabrics to spark my imagination, beautiful scenery in the Appalachian Mountains where I live and work and sparkling people with phenomenal personalities. The mountains where I live inspired my “Majestic Mountains” block for The Splendid Sampler 2.
When you are prepping to make this block, trace your templates very carefully and cut directly on the sewn lines. I also recommend you lay out the quilt block pieces in each row prior to sewing them together – this will help to sew them in the correct order in which you want them to appear. 
I also recommend you lightly draw your 1/4” sewing lines on the back of each shape. I enjoy doing this with my block because it gives me a reference line to follow when I pin my pieces together prior to using the sewing machine. But the biggest reason I recommend this – when you draw your 1/4” lines on the wrong side of each of the fabric shapes – you have now given yourself a spot on each of the shapes to easily match up to its partnering shape and ensure you have lined everything up correctly!!   For example:
Notice how I have laid the fabric shapes on top of each other in the photo above? Also notice the white “hands” pointing to the upper and lower points of the triangle shapes? These are two excellent “points” you will match up on the top and bottom fabric shapes. Use a pin and insert it through the top fabric entering right on the “point” where the drawn lines neat on the top of the shape and then also do the same for the points on the lower portion of the top and bottom shapes. Once pinned – Sew! Repeat this for each of the shapes and you will have perfectly matched shapes!
To thank each of you for following along on this fun Sew-A-Long we have a special treat for you today!  We are offering 25% off of all of our patterns on our website from now until April 27, 2019.  Visit our website at:
and use coupon code:  splendidsampler
The code can be used as many times as you like from now until it expires.  (please note if you order printed patterns that we need to ship to you – please know it may take us up to 5 business days to ship your order – we live very remotely in the mountains and we do not have a postal delivery route. With that being said – PDF file patterns are faster for you to access!)
Here are today’s four blocks introduced on The Splendid Sampler Journey:
Cath Hall: Stars Above
Tammy Vonderschnitt: American Spool
Jane Davidson: In The Hoop
Tara Baisden (me): Majestic Mountains
Have a wonderful Day!

Quilting

Splendid Sampler II Blocks and Sew-A-Long

Today I wanted to update my website and upload all the photos of the blocks we have created for The Splendid Sampler 2 Sew-A-Long so far.  We are 3/4 of the way through on our Sew-A-Long that is happening on FaceBook right now! But you can always jump in at any time and stitch along with us!
We are one of the designers included in this book, our block Majestic Mountains can be found on page 33.  And here it is…….
 Our Majestic Mountains Block from The Splendid Sampler 2 Book
This is the original block in the book using the colors provided for the original quilt.  I’m remaking this blocks in reproduction fabrics to blend with the rest of my quilt blocks I have made so far on this journey! 
Get ready for picture overload – here our the blocks we have sewn so far!

I hope you enjoyed viewing all of our Splendid Sampler 2 Quilt Blocks!
I’m off to sew a few more blocks from the book – enjoy your day!

Quilting

Little LeMoyne Star Monday & Mrs. Miller’s Apprentice Quilt

I had a nice relaxing weekend hand stitching some more Little LeMoyne Star blocks. These little hand-pieced treasures are addicting!  I also worked a bit more on the layout for my stars and so far, I’m happy with it.  I need to tweak my measurements just a tad bit more, but I really like it so far! I’m using a set of quilt stamps for the actual LeMoyne Star blocks, but the layout (the pink fabric around the blocks in the center of my photo) I had to draw myself.  I’ll probably upload it to my website to share with those of you interested in it after I’m sure I have the measurements exact for templates!
This morning I worked on my Mrs. Miller Apprentice BOM. I am so in love with this fabric line by Pam Buda for Marcus Fabrics.  The name of the fabric line is the same as the BOM – Mrs. Miller’s Apprentice.  Gorgeous shades of blues and creams and ivories. This fabric line is available in quilt shops now.
This is going to be such a gorgeous quilt and I look forward to participating in this year long project! If you haven’t made any of Pam’s creations – her company name is Heartspun Quilts.  Her directions in her patterns are phenomenal and she uses excellent graphics in the directions also!

                                                                

I also downloaded a book recently that peaked my interest.  For those of you that don’t know – I love to read. I have many different favorite authors, but this past weekend this book by Patricia MacDonald really caught my attention.  So far – I love it!!! The Girl In The Woods is the name of the book and you can click on the amazon link above to read more about it!
And I almost forgot to post about our Splendid Sampler II blocks!  Some of you may follow me on FaceBook and Instagram – but if not – here are my blocks from this past week 
Are you making the Splendid Sampler II quilt?  

                                                           

If you haven’t already purchased your copy of The Splendid Sampler II book – just click on the book image above and it will take you right to Amazon where you can purchase a copy of the book and even the kindle version (which is awesome by the way!)
I think I should do a blog post this week and update all of you here also on all the blocks I have completed for The Splendid Sampler II quilt.  I am part of a Sew-A-Long on Facebook and we post our blocks every week as we get them done! It’s “sew” much fun!
Have a wonderful Monday!