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BUTTERFLY'D: UNFURLING GLORY IN AN (EXTRA)ORDINARY LIFE

RESULTS OF THE 2015 WRITER'S DIGEST SELF-PUBLISHED BOOK AWARDS 

Following up with my last post SIX BENEFITS TO ENTERING A WRITING OR PUBLISHING COMPETITION, I wanted to share with you an example of feedback I received when I entered my first children's book The Two Trees into the 2015 Writer's Digest Self-Published Book Awards, and how I plan to follow up with the judge's comments.

First, I want to state that I was aware that Writer's Digest receives thousands of entries from across North America and beyond and that my chances were slim to win in part because my book is…

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SIX BENEFITS TO ENTERING A WRITING OR PUBLISHING COMPETITION 

For a number of years leading up to what I consider my breakout year, my artistic pursuits were cocooned while I focussed on helping youth develop their own unique gifts. It was in 2011 that I decided to get serious about pursuing both my music and writing. That year, I walked into a recording studio for the first time, entered a short story in a writing competition, and submitted my first Chicken Soup for the Soul story. I was blessed to have had some early successes, but even if I hadn't I would still…

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PRAYERS FOR LA LOCHE, SASKATCHEWAN 

In 2007, I entered into the most meaningful adventure of my life when I started working as a university outreach educator to northern Saskatchewan communities. My job was to connect with schools, teachers, and students to develop and implement meaningful hands-on activities in the areas of science and engineering. This position was a perfect fit for me, as I had spent the last 10 years working with youth, primarily in the area of science education. The overarching purpose of the initiative was to help…

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MY GREATEST BLESSINGS (AND CHALLENGES) OF 2015 

Wow! 2015 has been truly memorable, as I close in on nearly three years of full-time music and writing ministry! God has been so good as He has opened doors to new, sometimes unexpected opportunities, and closed doors that were not for me. It has been a blessing (and sometimes a challenge) to listen carefully to His voice; and to remember to keep Him at the centre of all I do. 
  
Here are my greatest blessings and challenges of 2015. 
  
Creating a new website: After a few years of frustration with managing my…

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BANISHING FEAR: MY EXPERIENCE AS PART OF A CHRISTMAS FLASH MOB 

Note: This is an updated version of a blog post from 2012. 
  
There have been a few times in my life when I have been sidelined by health problems. The last four months of 2012 was one of those seasons. Things had started to go downhill a few months after I released my debut CD Turn the Page, and it was a time that I largely cocooned myself, out of necessity and choice, away from the world. On partial medical leave from a professional job, my focus was on getting better and keeping up with my modified work…

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TOP TEN FAVOURITE CHRISTMAS ALBUMS 

What can be more glorious and joyful than music created to celebrate the birth of Jesus? I have listened to a lot of Christmas albums over the years, and as talented and entertaining mainstream artists can be, I personally believe that it is Christian recording artists and songwriters that best capture the spirit of Christmas—a true celebration and reflected understanding of the significance of the birth of Jesus Christ from those who believe. 
  
I myself wanted to focus on the birth of Jesus when I wrote…

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BE CAREFUL WHERE YOU LAY YOUR EGGS 

The butterfly cycle starts with the laying of eggs by an adult butterfly. Depending on the species of butterfly, one, two, or a cluster of eggs is laid. Most typically, eggs are deposited on the underside of new leaves so that the eggs are protected from enemies and the elements, and have ready access to nutrition when the caterpillar emerges.
 
The life cycle of the ladybug is very similar to that of the butterfly. The ladybug typically lays clusters of eggs on the underside of leaves. Larvae emerge, which…Read more

UNFURLING GOD'S GLORY IN OUR LIVES 

The most spectacular moment in the life cycle of the butterfly is when the butterfly emerges from its cocoon, unfurls its wings, and is ready to fly. And this is just the beginning of its journey!


 
Similarly, there are times in our lives when, after going through the egg, caterpillar, and cocooning stages, we finally burst forth to fulfill God’s purposes and plans. “Bursting” may be a bit of a misnomer, as it really is the culmination of a gradual process that bridges occasional breakthrough moments with…Read more

INTRODUCING BENEATH THAT STAR ILLUSTRATOR SARAH E. NICKEL 

As God’s glory is revealed through His unfolding purposes and plans for our respective lives, He calls us to encourage and uplift others in their gifting too. As someone who has worked with children, youth, and young adults for 20 years, my heart still beats strongly for this age group.
 
When I was looking for an illustrator for my book The Two Trees, I asked my network of writer colleagues if they had worked with or knew any children’s book illustrators. Although I received and followed up on several leads,…Read more

IS THE ANSWER TO A BUSY WEEK THE CATERPILLAR OR THE CHRYSALIS? 

Waking up this morning at 5:30 am, I couldn’t help but mentally review my busy week ahead. Even though our pastor had prayed on Sunday that we would have the strength to accomplish all God had set out for us in the coming days, I was still concerned that I would have enough energy for everything going on. On top of the day-to-day administration of my music and writing ministry, music practices, a radio interview, meetings, a hair appointment, a book signing, and hosting a house concert with (and opening…

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    Feb20

    The Modern Homemaker by King's Castle Designs and Events

     —  —

    The Legends Centre, Gym #1, 701 Centennial Blvd., Warman, SK

    Trade show featuring locally-owned businesses. Up to 100 Vendors. I will have all my books and CDs there along with select paper crafts.

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