Coffee – It’s My Happy Place

I have like the smell of coffee for as long as I can remember but it took some time for the taste to grow on me. But for years I still only drank it on occasion during parties and such. I never understood how or why people NEEDED it.

I made it through college, grad school, and two children without needing the extra caffeine. Now I love my third child. Such a sweet boy. But he is full of…life. When he turned two, I discovered mommy needs caffeine.

Then I added my fourth child. Okay don’t freak out. I know I don’t have a fourth child. But writing has become as consuming to my life as adding another child and let me tell you. When I am up at 5:30am writing. Coffee isn’t more than just a good idea.

Yes, I gave into the dark side but what can I say but I love it here. I look forward to my morning cup. I think wonderful happy thoughts of how perfect the day will go as I sip the Irish cream enhanced brew.

If you are ever in Arizona, stop by and I make enough to share.

What is you favorite coffee? If Coffee isn’t your thing, what is your favorite way to wake up in the morning?

Just Kiss Him Already!

My daughter is five and, like most five-year-old girls, princess obsessed. We’ve seen all the movies, more than once. The other day my daughter was watching The Little Mermaid and when it came to the part of the near kiss she shouted, “Would you just kiss him already.”

Don’t we love hating that moment in the movie. Susan May Warren refers to it in her book Kiss and Tell as the “wink.” You know that point, often close to dead center of the story, when romantic tension builds and you want to yell at the screen “Just kiss him already!”

Or often they do kiss but it’s interrupted or perhaps they stop and say “we can’t.” However it works out it always leaves the audience with a taste of the Happily Ever After but pulls the carpet out from under us making us compelled to turn one more page before we turn off the light and go to sleep.

Growing up, I watched all romantic movies I could get my hands on. I loved the romance but I grew to have great expectations of what was to come. If one of the steps was weak or missing, the whole plot felt weak.

Can you recognize the wink in your favorite romance? What is your favorite wink moment from a movie or book and why do you think it is so great?

Fun Times! Fun Times!

I don’t normally post on Sunday but I had to share the news that I won My Book Therapy’s April challenge for a proposal scene. I am featured on their Blog today and I am so excited.

My book therapy is such a great resource for aspiring writers. I am amazed at how far I’ve come in just a year. I am sure I will talk about them much more in the future. Just wanted to share the fun news and encourage you to head on over to http://www.mybooktherapy.com today!

Christian Romance?

People often talk about perfect matches like macaroni and cheese, peanut butter and jelly, or salty and sweet. But what about terrible combinations – like for me today a crayon and the clothes dryer. As I WD40ed my clothes trying to salvage some of my husband’s work shirts, I thought about this.

Specifically, I thought about how often I see the doubt on people’s faces when I say I write Christian romance. Can there be such a thing as Christian romance? Since I write it, you can probably guess my position but let me take a moment to explain why.

One argument I have heard is that it is not good for one’s faith. That reading such literature will make women discontent in their marriages, long for a more romantic husband, or tempted to seek the experience in an affair.

I have a friend who recently shared her story with me. After her husband died at forty-five she had a difficult time but God provided and her second marriage is truly novel worthy. After she told me did I long for what she had? NO! I loved her story. I loved the sweet feelings it gave me about love and romance and I was reminded of God’s truths and goodness. After talking to her, I went to my husband and hugged him and said, “Stay alive, honey! I am happy living through just one romance novel.”

I like to read romance because I love a good story with compelling characters and I like watching them fight for love. I like reading Christian romance because not only do they fight for love but they are reminded of a godly truth, that probably, I need reminded of as well.

Jesus used story in his teaching and I can see why. I know he didn’t use romance but his used stories of life to teach valuable biblical truths. I have been a christian for 30 years. I have heard a lot of sermons, attended a lot of bible studies, and read a lot of non-fiction books. But some of the images and truths that impacted me most came from a fiction story where I saw the truth of God played out before my eyes in the characters every day lives.

Why do I write Christian romance? I write because story just spills out of me. I write romance because it is the story I find most compelling. I write Christian because I can’t not help but share the truths of the gospel. After all- the Bible is one big story of God’s redeeming love. And I combine them all into one because that is the call I feel God has put on my life.

So, is there such a thing as Christian romance? This lady says there is – and I like it.

What are your thoughts? Have you ever read a Christian romance novel? Why or why not?

Can You Grow Flowers in the Desert?

Did you ever dream of living in Barbie’s Dream house? I think most all of us did. I believe at one time I had quite the detailed mental picture of my perfect home.

As I grew and gained a better understanding of money, the cost of things, and my call to follow God, my list dwindled to a few basic desires. Or should I say list of “I’ll take anything but…” 1)No place Hot  2)Hate Subdivisions  3)Didn’t want a cookie-cutter house  4)No where near the city  5)And please no tiny back yard.  Sounds reasonable…Right?

Guess where I live? You guessed it. Phoenix (area) so yes, 120 in the summer is very hot, I don’t care if it is dry or not. We do live thirty minutes from the city, but if the cities between there and here merge into each other, yeah it is still too close for me. And yes, subdivision with the tiny back yard and cookie cutter house and all.

I am not trying to lament or play Eeyore here. We have been here for seven (almost eight) years. Why? Because that is where God has called us right now. But the great thing about God, even if he calls us to a difficult place he never leaves us there, forgotten.

As summer is nearly upon us I have found myself loathing the desert in a way I haven’t for a long time. I found myself humming the happy tune of “I’ve gotta get out of this place, if it’s the last thing I ever do” as I did dishes or folded laundry. I smelled the sweet fragrance of Lilacs in a Yankee Candle store and burst into tears.

Then yesterday as I walked around our petite back yard I took in the beautiful flowers that have been doing a number on my allergies and remembered the verse God gave me a few months back.

“The LORD with guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden. Like a spring who’s water’s never fail.” ~Isaiah 58:11

Wow! What a gentle loving God we serve. With God even here in the desert I can bloom, I can thrive. I still hold out hope to leave my desert wanderings, and I hope it doesn’t take forty years. But if it does I will hold on to the truth that even here I can bloom like a well watered garden with Christ at my side.

What about you? Has God placed you somewhere or in a situation extremely challenging? How is God watering your garden?

(photos from our Desert garden)

What is in a name?

As you can see, I have struggled really getting this blog off the ground. I have played with different names, different looks, different topics and it all resulted in one main problem…time. If I could hook my computer up to my brain every day I would be quite the efficient blogger, I compose often as I am carpooling the children or making dinner. But sitting down to type them out. Nope – doesn’t happen.

A friend told me that Blog isn’t just about talking a lot. It is about making connections. Making friends. Deepening friendships. So I thought for a moment and considered how I make friends. I do it through communication. Great! Blogging is all about communication. What do I talk to my friends about?

I talk about my FAITH. I talk about who God is to me, what he is doing in my life and how His love continually amazes me.

I talk about my FAMILY. I am fortunate enough to be mother to three amazing children of 3,5, and 7. They fill my day with funny stories that often teach me amazing life truths.

I talk about FICTION. I love reading and I am on my way to be an author of fiction. I love talking about good books or writing techniques I am learning.

I talk bout things that are just plain FUN. I love to laugh and I love to share laughter with others.

If the is how I develop friendships then this is how I will blog.

Why Fingerprints? God is at work in my life. I am a lump of clay and his fingerprints are on me as he shapes me into the woman he wants me to be. But I also want to leave fingerprints in others lives. So many mentors, teachers, and friends have left fingerprints in my life. Maybe something on this blog God will use to touch someones life in a profound way.

So, I’m back! New determination. New look.  I hope you stick around and tell your friends.

Be honest – What do you think of the new look?

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