The Amatorium: Magical Grace Refueling Station

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This February, I have been absorbing messages of “law” like there’s no tomorrow. By law, I mean- anything that defines and measures good. I am one of those super sensitive persons that finds the law everywhere. The law is my natural habitat. If I was a homing pigeon, I could find my way back to the law with both eyes closed in an Oregon snow storm.

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True Beauty and Sleep Wrinkles

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I wonder what my husband thought as he waited for me at the end of the wedding aisle? Over 25 years ago now... my choice of wedding dress was a bit more puffy and sparkly than what I might choose today. I wore a tiara, for goodness' sake! But boy, did I feel beautiful. He must have thought so too, because he didn't seem disappointed when my father handed me off.

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The Gift of Social Anxiety: Finding Rest in God's Grace

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I've written a whole book about the things I'm not good at... eye contact, small talk, receiving judgment, and always coming up short of perfection. It has taken me many years to learn the rules of social interaction, and yet it has always been impossible to get it right. As it turned out, that weakness has become my greatest asset.

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Merry Grace-mas

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The birth of Jesus was the beginning of the end  for religion. The story starts with a helpless infant born in humble circumstances to a pair of nobodies. And it ended with a spirit/man ascending to heaven, His final words echoing throughout all of Creation "... you will receive power..." 

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Our Smudged Johari Window

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Everybody has a blind spot. In psychology, this is called a section of the Johari window (named after its inventors Joseph and Harrington). It's the stuff others know about you that you don't know about yourself. I cringe in horror at the thought of what people see through my Johari window... people with social anxiety spend so much time *hiding*. It's a worthless pursuit, because we are generally seen anyway. I have a hazy idea of what my blind spot might include... overprotectiveness as a mother, selfishness, being judgmental, etc.  But obviously I don't see the ramifications of my blindness clearly, because- yeah, it's a blind spot.

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Fear Less: Local History

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For the last year, I have been tossing around this idea for a writing project. It includes two of my favorite things: local history and suspense novels. Near the northern edge of the Sheldon National Antelope Refuge (Nevada) is an abandoned homestead called the IXL Ranch. Since visiting it last year, I have been unable to get its haunted remains out of my mind. 

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A photo of me as a sensitive baby, five beautiful generations of anxious women

Parenting Socially Anxious Children

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So here's the thing about parenting: nobody says it, but deep down I think we get it. WE DON’T KNOW WHAT WE ARE DOING.  I mean, think about it. Virtually every step of parenting comes with absolutely no previous experience. 

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Five Tips for Coping with Criticism

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This recently happened to me. A good bit of criticism. I actually paid people to do it, but still. :) I entered my book in the Published Nonfiction category in the 2017 Oregon Christian Writer's awards contest. "Humble brag" alert: It is now one of three finalists!  Good news, amazing, how does that happen?

Of course, that's not what I'm choosing to focus on. I'd rather dwell on the critique sheets I received from the judges. You know... criticism.  I specifically signed up to be judged, spending the money to send copies of my book to judges for that very reason. Yet, how dare they! :)  The following five tips aided my criticism recovery time tremendously. I hope they help you too.

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