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Thursday, December 29, 2005

The Launch

The month of December has traditionally been a roller coaster ride~ all the joy of decorating, all the family stress of who travels where and when, and all the wide-eyed wonder of little ones. Add to that my wedding anniversary on New Year’s Eve and I have a sometimes enjoyably breathless, sometimes incredibly stressful December.

This year it’s been enjoyably breathless. Thank You, Lord!!!

My marriage has grown up by leaps and bounds and we’re enjoying a December that’s been filled with heart chocolate and warm snuggles. Thank you all for the prayers…. many of you have been His voice of truth to help me hang on to the fact that God is good and He has a good plan.

My kiddos have been joyous messes as we’ve baked cookies and wrapped and unwrapped lots of love in specially chosen packages. They’ve added so much sparkle to this special time of year.

On top of all that, God saw fit (in the fullness of His time) to extend an early Christmas present in the form of three published stories due out in March and October of 2006. I’m so excited about these stories because in each of them I get to share my heart and offer words of encouragement to three special groups of people~ fellow diabetics, expectant moms, and teen girls.

Adding to my excitement is my wonderful web designer husband who has my website almost ready to launch. And he’s done an amazing job. The debut will be THIS SATURDAY~ NEW YEAR’S EVE!!! ( My husband’s heart and talent shine bright on every page. This site is our way of ringing out a year of growth to be celebrated and ringing in a new year full of promise. Please come visit me there!

Then, just to be sure I got the message that God does indeed have good plans for me, He did something even better than I could ask or imagine…

He, through the wonderful people at Multnomah Publishers, extended a THREE BOOK CONTRACT!!!!!!!! Come February 2007 Ransomed Dreams will move from the dust bunny hideout under my desk to store shelves and beyond.

God is so good!!!!!

He was good when life hurt so badly I wanted to give up this time last year, and He is good now. What an awesome God we serve!

As we celebrate the end of 2005 and the beginning of 2006, please join me in dreaming big. God is good and He does have good plans for each one of us…


Monday, December 12, 2005

Another cool God kiss

Last night, after enjoying a relaxing cup of eggnog by Christmas tree light with my wonderful hubby, we came down to the family room and got busy on our computers. I did some blog touring and catching up, which was great. My husband did some work on my soon-to-come website. This weekend he designed a yummy splash page to announce the coming soon. In my totally unbiased opinion I think it's awesome! ;-)

Here's the link: I'd love to hear what you think.

Before I went to bed, I surfed to a website I used to check often to see if I made it into my second book compilation. But enjoying Christmas with little ones has had me so happily busy I hadn't checked the site in a good while.

Well, last night I saw that the list was posted...



The U-Turns book The Choices Teens Make will be coming out in October of 2006 with my story "If Only I Were Beautiful" in it. I'm SO excited!!!

Still no news about my two novels, but I'm learning with every baby step that God is good and He has good plans, contracts or not. It's nice, especially this bustling time of year, to relax and enjoy the goodness of God.

God kisses and heart chocolate make this the most wonderful time of the year for me!

Friday, December 02, 2005

Merry Christmas with God kisses

Merry Christmas!!!

This is truly a most wonderful time of the year this time round! All the painful work God has done in this past year finally feels like it is coming together and creating an incredible holiday season I'm thoroughly enjoying with my family.

We started with a Thanksgiving to remember... dancing with my two year old to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade and watching all three of my princesses wide-eyed wonder at the floats and singer and festivities. My youngest pointed to the Rockettes' routine on the TV and said, "mommy dance." I look nothing like a Rockette, but it sure felt nice to be so seen by my baby. ;-)

Since then we've enjoyed decorating the house, hanging precious picture ornaments together on the tree, having Christmas pictures taken, (and actually enjoying it!) and making a gingerbread Christmas tree. And we still have many more fun, memory-making things planned. Tomorrow we bake cookies and next week we are going to see the Nutcracker at the Fox Theater in downtown Atlanta.

Plus, we have the annual holiday trip to Brusters for scoops of eggnog and peppermint ice cream all around. And ice skating on Christmas Eve. Then my girls' favorite thing to do on Christmas Day...putting up the Baby Jesus on our advent calendar.

We’ve done most of these things for years now, but this year everything sparkles a little more through happy tears as we read Christmas stories and snuggle together by the glowing tree my girls picked out and their daddy cut down.

My heart is full and overflowing.

But that’s not all…here’s where the unexpected God kisses multiply.

As my family life has grown more and more healthy, I’m learning to enjoy the moments instead of frantically capture them. One huge God kiss after another there. My writing as well has taken me places I’ve never gone before—some amazing and some awful. I’m still waiting to hear back from two publishing houses that have been very interested in my first two novels. This is both amazing and awful at the same time. ;-) I’ve also made it to the final editor stage for three short stories, with contracts signed.

Then I found out the highest paying one fell through. I didn’t make the final cut. And it was the one I felt most sure I’d see it printed. I was sad, took it to God, and then moved on and kept working on my third book.

Here comes the coolest part…

Yesterday I got the entire galley for the Chicken Soup book my story didn’t make it into. I was shocked and decided to delete it, not wanting to know which ones made it without mine in there.
But my husband insisted I just look. So I did.

And there was my story.

It's the last one in this compilation. I get to close this awesome book with one of my favorite lines I’ve written to date.

“Dance. Even when life hurts. It’s worth every step.”

I made it after all!!!! I was in total shock. Then I shared the news with my girls and they danced around and said, “Yeah, Mommy!” That’s when I felt it.

My eyes watered…

My heartbeat grew faster…

And God bent down and whispered a kiss into my soul.

He does have good plans for me. For my writing and for my precious family. Because I’m His and He loves me.

To be loved like that is the greatest of all gifts my Daddy could have given me this most special time of the year.

Thank you, Abba. You’re the BEST!
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