Archive | January 2016

Its a bouncing baby…book!?

Book launch cake 2

Here it is!  My bouncing baby book!  Empty Hands to Open Arms has been conceived in the womb of my imagination and brought to life and knit lovingly together with every blog post and the jot notes of my scribble journal.  It’s my story, launched this past week.

One year ago, I had high hopes of entering the publishing world.  Now here at the end, I realize that publishing a book seems very much like a pregnancy term.  Ironically from the beginnings of putting material to print to its fresh-off-the-press date, this book was birthed after just nine months.

Allow me to explain,

The conception of the idea of actually putting a for-real manuscript together came through my husband.  Dario was on a shopping trip when he happened upon a contest information card for Word Alive Press.  He knew my desire to publish and encouraged me to enter the contest for free publishing which closed June 15, 2015.

Then I did nothing.  I really didn’t discover I was seriously pregnant with the desire to write my book until the beginning of April.  It was at that moment that inspiration, possibility and the challenge hit me all at once.  I was going to write a book!

In my first trimester: April, May and June, writing just seemed like a lot of work with not a lot to show for it.  There was the exception of mood swings and crazy cravings for endless snacks as I wrote page after page.  Soon my ‘baby’ began to take shape and form and on June 15th, I submitted my manuscript and synopsis of the story.

My second trimester: July, August and September, I surely showed signs of growth.  My manuscript was accepted and I discovered I had been shortlisted in the non-fiction category.  It was during this time that the book adventure was becoming more real as I completed preliminary editing and the short synopsis and author’s biography for the back of the book. I could feel a quickening as I realize the dream of publishing was going to actually happen.

The third trimester:  October, November, December seemed to take forever.  Will this book ever come out!  Back aches from all that computer time, and a tired feeling made me know that I was ready for the whole process to be completed. During this period the process of editing, rewriting, correcting and fine tuning of cover design, and the final typesetting of the book would determine what this creation would actually look like.

Finally, birth! The moment arrived by mid-December and the books were hot off the press.  The delivery was accomplished with a whole lot of labor.  Especially as we had to get the books up our steps and into our home!

Parenting our new bundle of books has been a joy.  At nearly two months, we have already seen “her” gain much attention.  Friends are congratulatory and others want to hold and admire.

Something is gnawing at me though.  There is a stirring inside of me – an idea, a thought, and a possibility.  Is it another dream?  I think there might be a sibling!

  • Today, together we launch Empty Hands to Open Arms, treat her kindly as she enters the world and help her to find her home in the empty hands that need her the most.

To order go to;;; and Indigo as well as wherever Christian books are sold.


Living Child-Friendly

baby smile

It happened… today at my new job, today the little J that I nanny looked at me while drinking his formula and smiled.  His warmth in that big open-mouthed, corners upturned and expression of joy at being with me removed the chill from the winter air.  This little person almost three months old has welcomed me into his world.  I’m now accepted.  It has thrilled me to the bottom of my very heart.

My husband and I have been practicing Child-friendly living and we are finding ways for little arms and big smiles to embrace us.  These heart-grown children are filling us in ways I didn’t know was possible.

empty hand to open arms ebook (1) for Facebook, etc

I have written in my book, EMPTY HANDS TO OPEN ARMS, from Infertility to possibility about the heart-grown children that I have found.  This past Christmas I was so privileged to enjoy the company of Colton* and Karen* (names changed), two heart-grown children, we have known for several years.  Colton was quiet but soon engaged us in the latest Star Wars Lego creations he had finished.  Karen simply was overjoyed that my husband and I came to visit that she fluctuated between showing us her new toys and snuggling up much like a purring kitty.  I think she even emitted a few mews during the evening.  It was a challenge to pry those hands off as we attempted to leave with a promise for an over-night stay in the near future.  Even more difficult was to pry our hearts off for the time being as we made our way home.  It was a two-hour drive.  Within minutes of driving away, I was already missing them.

My husband and I are coming to realize that real love hurts.  While hellos are welcome, the dread of having to say good-bye has a quiet ouch all of its own.  I have found that after our connections in our visits, there is a little emptiness in our empty nest.   Coming home after these visits remind me of what I really want.  I want those arms around my neck everyday.

Yet I am so fulfilled in taking pleasure in the relationships of these heart-grown children all around me.  I am so at peace in having let go of the need to control and to mourn what infertility has cost us.  I thank God often that I can trust Him with the future knowing that I can be blessed by these little people friendships.

As our present heart-grown children grow older and eventually grow up, I have the unique privilege of adopting new little loves that smile at me at feeding time and crawl permanently in my heart.

EMPTY HANDS TO OPEN ARMS: from Infertility to Possibility is available at; Chapters/Indigo; and wherever christian books are sold.  It is also available at Kindle and Kobo in ebook format.