Thursday, October 16, 2014

Priorities = STRAIGHT

So, today is blogging day.

But I was busy this week and didn't make time to do so.

BOO for me.

But in my defense, I'm feverishly working on several writing projects and am trying to balance priorities to give my readers more books to read!

That's a good excuse, right?!?

I think it is:-)

So in that spirit, I'm going to take a blogging break next week so I can concentrate on writing BOOKS.

I'd appreciate your prayers, that God helps me think clearly, prioritize well, and get the story he's given to me down on to paper (or screen, as it may be) in a way that gives HIM glory.

I'll be back on October 28th... fresh and ready to blog, and hopefully with a few things off my writing to-do-list checked off!!!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

It's okay to be ME

It's so hard to get caught in the comparison trap. To look it others and think, "Wow, if I could just be like that...."

I've had a war within me pretty much since the moment I found out I was going to be a mother. It was like I looked around and found all the qualities in other mothers I admired and did a buffet style "This is how I want to be."

Then I became a mother.

And was sad to find out... it doesn't really work that way.

So then I switched to berating myself. "Why can't I do this?" "Why can't I be like her?" "How come I'm such a bad mom compared to ____?"

It's a bit disheartening at times.

Then I go through phases where I muster up all my energy and put it all into trying to be like that perfect "mom" mold I'd created out of my observations.

It was exhausting. To the point I stomped on the mold and just quit trying. Quit caring. I am who I am and my kids and hubby JUST NEED TO LIVE WITH IT, dad gum it.

But that's not okay either.

Why?

Because I want to care. I NEED to care. I NEED to try to work at being better.

And that's when this great thought hit me. Somewhere during my almost 2 weeks of a "mom break" I had a few weeks ago.

It's okay to be ME.

I am how I am for a reason. God's made me, molded me, to be the mom I am for my kids, and that's fantastic.

But.... I need to be the BEST version of me possible. Which means I still need to work at it. I still need to care. I still need to put my "best" foot forward.

So... I thought I'd show exactly what that looks like today. What are some of the things that showcase ME as a mom... and that are just fine?

  1. I don't homeschool. I want to hide under the bed at the very thought. I ENJOY my breaks from my kids, in fact. I kinda need them. It is not something God has put on my heart or given me any kind of desire to do. I look at other moms who do and am in awe. I used to feel guilty.... they must love their kids SO much more than me. But nope. That's not it. God's just shaped them different.... and that's okay!
  2. I spank. Rarely, but I do. I look at other mom's who don't, who claim they couldn't bear to hurt their child, and think... is that what I'm doing? Am I, like, in some strange way, being a bully to my kid by spanking? But nope. That's not it. I don't over-spank and only do it when really needed, and not out of anger. My kids are well behaved, they know they are loved, and they are honestly better for it. God's shaped my family the way He has, both my hubby and I endured them as kids and came out better for it, so it's one method of discipline we use... and that's okay!
  3. I hate cleaning my house. Seriously, I despise it. I pray almost daily that God blesses book sales enough for me to be able to continue to stay at home and write while paying our bills --- and allows me to hire someone to come in once a week and clean. I know, I know, extravagant. and until such time, I still clean. But God's not made me to be one of those women who enjoy keeping house. It gives me no pleasure, no sense of accomplishment, and the whole time I do it I think of all the other productive things I COULD be doing. God's given me a brain that loves to write and loves numbers and loves to fix things.... and evidently the "cleaning" gene was removed to make way for those. I still clean because my family needs me to, but ours is not the cleanest house on the block by any stretch of the imagination.... and that's okay!
  4. I'm not a good cook. Evidently my cooking gene is missing too. I actually like to bake some, but cooking meals? Yeah, it's just not my gift. I do so because my family needs me to, but I'll be honest. We go out probably more than we should considering our slim budget. But ya know? God didn't give me a love for fine food or crafting food to be pretty or flavored to perfection. I still cook meals for my family as best I can-- even if we do eat a lot of mac and cheese. I CARE and I put my best foot forward.... but our meals are not fit for Betty Crocker's kitchen...and that's okay!
  5. I'm a silly mommy. I love to be goofy with my kids. We dance around the living room, we sing crazy at the top of our lungs, I am the ultimate tickle monster, and I recently won at a game of nerf wars, something I'm very, very proud of. When they are naughty, I frequently threaten them with a trip to the trashcan where I will throw them in. No, I don't actually do it, but I've held them over it a few times until their complaints turned to laughter. Hey, whatever works, right? God's made me silly... and it affects my motherhood.... and that's okay!

So yes, those are just a few things about me.

Things I'm learning to embrace rather than change. To love rather than despise. To be BETTER at, rather than kick to the curb.

What about you? What are some things that define who you are as a parent that you can learn to embrace and IMPROVE upon rather than delete and rewrite?

Thursday, October 9, 2014

SALE!!!!!!!!


http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MNR78AS/onwosdr-20

It's FALL!

The leaves are turning all sorts of pretty colors, the weather is getting cooler, the smell of PUMPKIN is in the air!

It's the PERFECT time to cozy up with a nice, fun book....

So what better time for a SALE on my sweet little side dish, A Side of Faith?

For this weekend ONLY, now through Monday, you can get the ebook of A Side of Faith for only 99 cents!

That's less than $1.00!

Less than a pack of gum....

Even less than my $1.00 Large Coke from McDonald's!

So if you haven't had a chance to check it out, now's a great time!

And if you're of a mind, I'd LOVE help in spreading the word about the sale!

Thank you so much for your support and love! I appreciate you more than I can

Blessings!

~ Krista

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Renewal

Rest is such an amazing thing.

It can do wonders to a soul.

I'm back from my two trips that I've anticipated for months and months and months.

Usually two trips in two weeks would be so incredibly stressful. But not these trips.

First, I left my kids behind in both cases. I LOVE my kids. But I needed a break. Badly. Like, momma is on the brink of cracking, badly.

Second, I got two trips that I really needed.

One to focus on ME as a WRITER and a woman and as a child of Jesus. To have fun with friends and mentally recharge.

And one to focus on my marriage and to physically recharge. This girl needed SLEEP!! Hubby and I got a little cabin in the mountains near Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, and went on a "stress-free" 4 days of just slowing down the pace, not fretting about what/when/where we were going to go, but just relaxing. We came back actually LIKING each other again, enjoying each others company, and me not snipping at him every 5 minutes. (If you know us at all, my hubby is not a snipper. He's pretty quiet, and usually I'm snipping at him to talk to me more, LOL)

So yeah, I'm feeling renewed. I like, cleaned my house yesterday, did laundry, AND got some writing in. All in the same day. Along with taking care of Annabelle. I know, shocker, huh!

We'll see how long my energy lasts, but I'm enjoying it while it lasts!

So here's my blog tip of the day:

Take a wee bit of time for you.

Ugh, okay. I know. It feels selfish. Our kids should be our everything, we should put everyones needs before our own, right?

But I propose that you can't take care of everyone else unless you're physically, emotionally, and spiritually "taken care of" yourself. If you're tired and worn down, eventually you'll become ineffective.

If you're feeling overwhelmed, tired, unproductive, bordering on sanity (raising my hand as of a few weeks ago).... get away. Even if it's for a few hours. But overnight is AWESOME if you can swing it.

Clear your to-do-list slate, leave guilt and stress far away, and just take a little time to "be".

BE yourself.
BE in the moment.
BE in tune with God.

Just... Be.



How do YOU take time for yourself to recharge?

Thursday, October 2, 2014

15 Amazing Years!

15 years ago, I married the love of my life.

I was a mere 18 years old...

And I'd probably throttle my girls' necks if they suggested at that age that they tie the knot. (my parents weren't super excited about the idea, either, which I thought was horribly old-fashioned and mean of them...It's amazing how being a mom oneself changes your point of view drastically!! Oh, and did I mention I met him in an Internet chatroom and had only "seen" him twice when we got engaged? AND he lived halfway across the country?)

But as ill-fated as the whole thing seemed, I've never regretted it, not ONE DAY. (Okay, fine, there have been a few days when I was especially mad at him that the thought might have glimpsed through my mind... but it fled fast, I promise!)

We're spending a few days in the mountains at little cabin high up in the woods. Today was glorious. We ate breakfast on the porch overlooking the beautiful mountains, then just laid around and did pretty much nothing all day. We needed this. We needed time to just BE.

Last night, we went to the Island in Pigeon Forge and rode the Big Sky Wheel. Afterward, we sat and watched the water show while holding hands.

This funny thought came to my mind.

We rarely hold hands anymore. Not that we don't like to. I LOVE holding my honey's hand.

But usually our hands are engulfed in the tiny hands of our children, ensuring their safety and enjoying their presense.

There is such joy in such a simple thing as holding hand.

I've missed it.

Tonight, we're headed out on the "town" and enjoying a nice dinner. There will definitely be more hand holding :-) :-)

I'm just stopping in quickly to say...

I love my sweet husband, and happy 15 years, oh-love-of-my-life. Looking forward to see what whirlwind God has for us in the next 15! 


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Exhaustion

I'm.

Tired.

Goodness, am I tired.

It is the best tired EVER though!

The ACFW conference last week was... amazing. Exactly what God ordered. I needed a mental break from "life" as it is and it totally delivered. I got to focus on networking and reconnecting with friends... ADULT friends... ones that don't (usually) whine for food or poop their pants or require scheduled medications to be given to them or scream when someone else hits them (although I'm sure they would if someone actually hit them, but thankfully that's typically frowned upon at Christian conferences!)

But while I feel emotionally and spiritually recharged, and had some GREAT appointments with my agent and a few editors, I'm now physically running on sleepy fumes. (as evidenced by the fact I am writing this at 9pm on Monday night and my eyes are burning and yelling at me to close them STAT!)

That said, here are a few fun highlights of conference (NOT all inclusive, as that would be impossible to list!)

  • I met the amazing Lauraine Snelling and got to chat a bit with her at dinner on the last night #starstruck
  • Cheering fellow Nashvillian Patrick Carr on as he won the Carol Award for Speculative Fiction, roomie Jody Hedlund on as she won the Carol Award for Historical Romance, and Alleycat Laurie Tomlinson on her Genesis win. There are SO many others that I screamed super loud for too!!!
  • Handing out Sandwich pins! Lots of friends reported being asked, "What's up with the sandwich?" including a few editors! I even sat down at a pitch session with an Editor with Tyndale and she asked me about it! It was super fun to represent the sandwich!!
  • I got to MEET my new agent in person! She was just as amazing as I thought she'd be!
  • I got to HUG SO many friends, too many to mention!!!
  • I had 3 of the BEST roomies out there, Jody Hedlund, Sarah Forgrave, and Janice Boekhoff.
  • Spending time with my Alleycats -- my sisters-of-the-heart.
  • Two pitches that I was INSANELY nervous about but they went much better than I could have hoped for. God reminded me, though, that He has a great plan in mind for my books and it is SO MUCH BETTER than my plans. Continuing to lay my book into HIS hands and trust
*yawn* GOODNESS I'm tired. I know there are a ton of other things I'm missing....*yawn*

Okay, so that's gonna have to be my update.

Now I must go to bed. Tomorrow (today when you're reading this...) is filled with laundry and cleaning and repacking for my NEXT trip...

Hubby and I are going to the moutains for a few days to celebrate our 15th anniversary! My inlaws are coming to help take care of the kiddos.

So while I'm emotionally filled but physically exhausted.... rest and recuperation are near!!!

OH! I have a billion and one pictures. Please feel free to visit here to view them! (It's my personal FB page... but I have the pictures set to public so anyone can see them! At least I think so...)

Thursday, September 25, 2014

ACFW BOUND!!!

Today's the day!

Heading out to the annual American Christian Fiction Writer's Conference in St. Louis!

My bags are packed, the van is full of gas, my onesheets are printed, my smile is in place, and my pitch is kinda ready. (I'm convinced that at some point, ya just gotta wing that one otherwise you sound like a robot when giving it!)

My goals for the next 4 days?

1.) Have fun. I spend most of my days knee deep in diapers and gtube feedings. FUN is definitely on the docket!

2.) Lots of hugs. This is my... 5th... conference (well, technically 4 1/2 but whatever.) Conference is like a bit of a homecoming, seeing old friends, meeting new ones, meeting friends you've met online but never had the opportunity to meet in person.

3.) Networking. HUGE part of conference! You sit down at lunch and the person next to you might very well be the next author who is willing to endorse your book or an editor who could be your biggest champion. These GOD-given moments are so important for a writer! And I also have several appointments with a blogger and my agent and such that are going to be SO much fun!

4.) Pitching. At this conference, you are scheduled appointments to "pitch" your project to agents and editors. I already have an agent (who will be doing my pitching for me to editors eventually) but I utilize the time as a way to connect a face to a name, and put a bug in the editors ear about my next book my agent may be sending their way soon!

(And yes, this book is NOT a Sandwich book, and is a full-length start of what will hopefully be a new series!)

5.) Not a lot of sleep. Because sleep is TOTALLY overrated.

6.) Marketing. I have bookmarks to hand out, Sandwich pins to beg people to wear, and my first book, Sandwich, with a Side of Romance, will be on the conference bookstore! A Side of Faith won't be in the bookstore this year, but that doesn't mean I can't hand out bookmarks to help get the wrod out!


But aside from all that, I have TWO prayers for this weekend.

1.) God's will be done. Because I can have lots of dreams and hopes and plans, but God's plans are MUCH higher than mine could ever be. So I'm going in with an open heart and open mind. It isn't about books or writing or any of that. It's about Jesus over all else.

2.) Rest. EMOTIONAL rest. I've tried to be real and honest about it, but yours truly is emotionally exhausted. While I won't get a lot of SLEEP this trip, I'm praying that my soul is renewed and refreshed. While I type this, Annabelle has tried to wrap furniture in Christmas wrapping paper that she found and is now spreading bottles of her formula all over the kitchen floor. Sigh... yes, rest. This is what I need!