Angels and Quilt Pieces…Our Journey with a Katrina Family

Angels and Quilt Pieces…Our Journey with a Katrina Family

By: Stephanie Ehmen

1 – How did you get interested in the topic that’s featured in your book?

When we volunteered at a shelter following Hurricane Katrina, we had no idea of the journey that lay ahead of us. Over the weeks and months we learned through our mistakes how to best help those in need.

2 – Tell us a bit about your background. What have you done in the past that relates to your book and that topic?

We had no background or preparation for this venture. We learned as we went, and this is why we felt that telling the story was so important.

3 – What advise would you give to someone who is interested in your topic?

For anyone who is interested in volunteering or charitable work, educating yourself ahead of time is imperative. It would have saved us a lot of headaches and heartaches. We hope that by sharing our story, it will inspire others to get involved helping those who need a “hand-up” and not a “hand-out”.

4 – What do you see as the benefit to participating in groups and organizations? My first thought would be networking opportunities and the chance for personal and business growth. What are your reasons?

The conversations that come with networking groups always leads to further reflection and education. The support we have received has resulted in more “Angels” being added to our list! Networking groups and blogs give the reader an opportunity to follow the progress of the family and has resulted in a lot of interest and support of “our kids”.

5 – Who is the ideal person to read your book? If each person that reads this was going to recommend your book to one person, what sort of person would they want to chose?

Along with pastors and clergy, I have found my target audience to be primarily Christian women who are interested in volunteer or charity work. My readers have included counselors, therapists, teachers, principals, community support groups, church leaders and lay people. The comments that I have received from readers are overwhelmingly positive. Many of the comments are in regards to what we learned about Generational Poverty and how to relate to people who come from different backgrounds than ourselves. Throughout our journey we saw many people who wanted to help out in the right way, but ended up causing more hurt and trauma because they did not understand those they were trying to help.

6 – What do you think ignites a person’s creativity?

In my case, it was a personal experience that I felt was important to share with others.

7 – What have you found to be the biggest stumbling block for people who want to start writing?

At times it is hard to know where to start and how to put the story into a cohesive format. As a first time author of a full length book, the search for a publisher was overwhelming, and it resulted in my utilization of self-publishing, a choice I have been happy with.

8 – How would you suggest they can overcome that?

I found my format quite by accident. As I wrote my first draft I felt that the story went on and on, and I was afraid that the reader would get bogged down in the day-to-day details. After letting a few friends read the draft, I discovered that this format worked well, as the reader was left wondering what would come next, just as we had lived it – not knowing what to expect next. Most every person who has read my book has told me that once they started reading they could not put it down. I can’t think of a better compliment!

9 – What do you find is the biggest motivator for people to succeed? Is it money, security, desire for fame or something else?

After the hard work and time put into writing, editing, designing and finally receiving the finished product, money is certainly a big issue. But I think a passion for the subject matter is my biggest motivator.

10 – Who is the “perfect” person to read your book?

Anyone interested in reading a good heartwarming story.

Anyone interested in volunteer or charity work.

Anyone who loves kids.

11 – Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

I would like to share the following introduction, and invite you to read more at my website:

Come on a Journey with us . . .

September 2005, in the after-math of Hurricane Katrina, we had no idea that we were about to embark on an unexpected journey. Wanting to help in a hands-on way, we volunteered at a church sponsored shelter. Here we would meet Mr. & Mrs. Thornton from New Orleans and their seven precious children. By the end of our volunteer week, we had earned the trust of Mr. Thornton and the children had found a place of refuge in our arms. Our journey over the following months has changed our lives forever. As the days, weeks and months progressed, the Thornton’s told us their extraordinary story in bits and pieces. We are telling our story through our own eyes, what we saw, heard and witnessed. Come on this journey with us and experience the joys and the heartaches, as we learned how to help others in need. It will make you laugh and cry; it will make you angry and warm your heart. Meet all the “Angels” who helped us out along the way by giving this family “pieces for their quilts”.

Thank you for the opportunity to share!

Stephanie Ehmen

Author of

“Angels and Quilt Pieces…Our Journey with a Katrina Family”

ISBN: 1-4196-6990-7

233 pp – 6 x 9

Also available at

Published by: BookSurge, LLC

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