Strength Through Retreat ~ Lessons From the Mountains

Strength Through Retreat ~ Lessons From the Mountains

I’m fresh home from a writing retreat in the mountains…and am once again reminded how it’s possible to find strength through retreat. It’s become a annual tradition for several members of my local writers’ group to escape the everyday chaos for a few days at the beginning of November and again in January. We check in to a resort on the creek, pull out our laptops, and write. And write. And brainstorm. And plot. And

Taking Time to Catch My Breath

Taking Time to Catch My Breath

The past month…make that months…have been crazy busy and cram-packed with all sorts of good stuff. January brought the launch of the first book in my new castle series (Stepping Into the Light) along with a writer’s retreat with friends and the unexpected encounter with an elk! February ushered in my husband’s new job and the overwhelming number of details to make that transition possible including his retirement paperwork and switching medical insurance companies. And

Fueling the Dream for the Long Haul

Fueling the Dream for the Long Haul

When I started blogging in 2009, I was on a journey toward my dream of being published as a novelist. At the time, I had one non-fiction book in print, a dozen articles published, and had submitted my fiction manuscript to a writing contest for the very first time. (Not to mention, I’d already been writing, taking classes, and attending conferences for a few years before that.) My early blog posts were all about the

Focus On Love – What It Means to Love Myself

Focus On Love – What It Means to Love Myself

The two greatest commandments in the Bible are to love God with all our hearts, minds, souls, and strength…and then to love our neighbors as ourselves. However, in a continuing effort to Focus On Love this year, I discovered that I didn’t fully grasp what it means to love myself. (After all, if I’m failing in this area, then I won’t be able to love my neighbors that way either.) Now, don’t get me wrong,

Coming Down From the Mountain Top

Coming Down From the Mountain Top

Life’s journey is a series of peaks and valleys. Sometimes, you are blessed with an experience where you feel like you’re on top of the world and can conquer anything. But then, life goes on and suddenly you’re coming down from the mountain top to rejoin life in the valley. I’ve been blessed to climb a few of Colorado’s “14-er” peaks and live close to Rocky Mountain National Park with even more gorgeous trails to

Finding Rest in the Cracks of My Crazy

Finding Rest in the Cracks of My Crazy

I wish I could take credit for the title of this blog post, but the idea of finding rest in the cracks of my crazy came straight from a Periscope by upcoming author Cara Grandle on her Writer’s Encouragement Show. (Seriously. Check her out every Tuesday 9 a.m. Pacific time for a boost of encouragement and a pep talk geared toward all sorts of creative people. End the commercial. Now back to my regularly scheduled

Refill the Tank and Get Back in the Race

Refill the Tank and Get Back in the Race

How has May been treating you? Ours has been the typical end-of-school-year May-athon with the usual choir concerts and awards nights and final exams. However, this year we also added dueling State playoff appearances since our athletic oldest son qualified for the State Track Finals in two events and then got to rush to another part of the state for Regional Baseball action the next day. Oh, followed by his graduation the day after that…which

A Cup of Cold Water

Ever been so hot you begged for a cup of cold water? Oh, wait, that’s been most of the country for the last month. This journey called life sometimes goes through seasons where the heat is turned up until we think we may faint without something to cool us off and soothe the parched landscape of our souls. The sweat of our efforts trickles down our back as we labor to keep moving forward, each step

Vacations – Returning Home

Our summer of virtual vacations is coming to an end and it’s time to return home. If we’d really been gone, we’d now have a giant pile of laundry to wash. A stack of mail and newspapers to sort through. An email inbox filled to overflowing. A yard to mow and a garden to weed. Not to mention a full schedule of regular life and appointments to keep. Wait a minute. I’ve got all those

It’s Time For a Vacation

At 11:00 last Friday morning, my 14-year-old stepped off the school bus in front of our house. Her summer vacation is officially underway. (The boys and my teacher-husband aren’t free until the end of this week.) With over two months of freedom hanging tantilizingly before us, what are we going to do this summer? Rising to the top of our family’s list are athletic events. A basketball skills camp. Special Olympics state track meet. A church sports