I’ve thought about it for a couple of years and talked out loud about it almost as long. I took small steps toward it in January, but the change felt unnecessary and a little scary. After the Speak Up conference in June, I resolved to make it happen, even though the change still seemed daunting. Actually, a little scary turned into a lot scary but I pressed through the doubt and fear and am thrilled about the change now.
I’m finally doing it.
I’m making the leap to a whole new website designed by my friend and graphic designer, Monica Yother. She and I worked together years ago and it was a joy reconnecting, reminiscing, and collaborating on this project. The process was beautiful.
The new website is a labor of love on my part. Take my ideas and passion, add her creativity and eye for design, mix in her encouragement and my courageous moments, hundreds of back-and-forth emails, some meetings, hours and hours of work, lots of questions and edits and you get a beautifully designed website that feels exactly how I want it to feel.
The new site will be up next week. I can hardly wait for you to see it.
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I’m excited about this change. I think you will be too.
I’m attending my first writer’s conference in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This means several things.
First, it means I know I’m a writer.
Second, it means I’m telling others I’m a writer.
Both of those are remarkable because only a few years ago I wouldn’t say it. I thought it and part of me knew it, but I kept it to myself except to those who knew me best.
Attending this writer’s conference means some other things. It means I’m eager to learn from others about what to do with my writing. It also means I’m willing to make an investment in learning my craft.
I’ll share more about it after I’ve had time to process everything I’ve gained from being here, but I can confidently say after two full days of the conference that it’s one of the best investments I’ve ever made. It’s better than I anticipated and the knowledge, support, and encouragement I’ve received is priceless.
What’s your craft? What are you passionate about? What do you dream of doing?
I encourage you to take a step toward your passion. Make an investment to learn all you can. Connect with others who have the same dream.
And see what happens.
“You are the light of the world – like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.” Matthew 5:14-15
Photo by Ian Schneider
Earlier this week, a story I wrote was published in Shattered Magazine. This is a first ever for me and something I’ve wanted and waited for a long time.
But I almost didn’t write the story.
The stories I write are remembered ones…..the ones I’ve lived and felt. This one was going to be an altogether different way of writing a story and I wasn’t sure I could do it.
Instead of letting my fear of failure scare me out of trying, I took it on. I knew I would learn from the experience even if the story wasn’t published. The online managing editor worked with me during the process and I was right: I learned so much!
First, I realized I have a lot more to learn about writing for publications like Shattered Magazine. I also learned the importance of doing things in spite of being afraid of them. This is one of those lessons I seem to have to relearn again and again.
During the process of writing the story I made another decision. I’m a writer so I’m going to write. I will submit a book proposal at the speaking/writing conference I’m attending in July. This is another new and scary thing for me but I know whatever the outcome, I will learn from the process.
And that’s a win-win!
I urge you to do something new and scary this week. Set a goal, move toward a dream, make a plan, have that conversation you’ve been putting off, ask the question, start the project. Face your fears and go for it!
Because it matters!
Live like it matters.
The story I wrote is about Zach Williams and his journey to freedom. You can read the story here.
My “to do” list for the weekend wasn’t long.
- Go to the grocery store. Like the “load down the cart” kind. Done. My husband does a lot of this lately but my family says I do it better.
- Actually do something with the food I buy at the grocery store and cook a great meal. Done. This made my family very happy.
- Finish addressing our son’s graduation announcements. Done.
- Reconcile our bank account. Done. And to the penny…..in an Excel spreadsheet. I love it. I’m an accountant, people.
- Trim the hedge and cut the dead branch out of the cedar tree. Done. My husband finished this because he’s taller.
- Post on my blog. There’s no “done” here.
On my drive to work this morning, I was thinking of the one thing that I hadn’t checked off the weekend “to do” list. It bothered me terribly. It didn’t matter that I’d accomplished way more than what was on the list.
I cooked and cleaned. I visited the neighbors, talked with my kids, and washed five loads of clothes.
I played with the dog, trained to increase my 5K speed, pulled weeds, and watched two great movies.
Piled the clothes in front of the appropriate doors so the owners would put the clothes away.
I laughed with my husband.
Had a nice lunch with my mother-in-law on Mother’s Day.
I did hundreds of things this weekend. But all I could think about was the one thing undone. My blog.
I want to write. But I can’t push “pause” on every other part of my life so I can blog. I do close myself off in my room to write but the interruptions come. I’m distracted. My son has a question. My daughter’s boyfriend comes to visit. My husband wants me to look at something. And then I stop my writing to be with them.
I’m still a wife and mother. A friend and a mentor. A sister. An employee.
But if I could just post something……anything on my blog.
Then I could check off the last thing on my list.
Well, here it is:
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Those Dishes Won’t Do Themselves.”