Hey there virtual friends, readers, family, saints…all of y’all!

I know it’s been a minute. Well, a lot of minutes. This year started off with A LOT going on in the Stimpson household. We moved, then we had that huge ice storm across the whole state of Texas, then I got into a little funk and ate a whole bunch of cupcakes from this bakery in my new city, and then I started writing a Christmas romance novella entitled All I Want for Christmas – it’ll be out on Audible in December!

And, of course, I spent time with this one!

(Y’all knew this Gi-Gi was going to share a picture, right?!)

I’m coming up on 50 years old, and when I look back over my life, I’m checking stuff off like, “Yep, God did that. Yep, that, too. Didn’t get that, but I realize now I never needed it. Still looking forward to that. Mmm hmm.” And it’s not because I’ve been perfect. I believe it’s had a lot to do with sitting down on many-a-Friday or -Saturday night, pulling out a journal, writing my true feelings on paper, stopping to listen, searching the Scriptures, getting mad at God and telling Him so, and then us sitting there together with me pouting in the ministry of His presence. And then we start talking again. This is how our relationship has rolled for quite some time and I’m thankful. In fact, this is actually the thing I could do all day without stopping and it still wouldn’t be enough.

But I’ve always done it by myself. In fact, I kinda considered myself a “loner” because I thought that’s what artists were and because I do like being alone. But one thing I learned during the pandemic is that I actually missed people…a lot! Especially as we went on in isolation.

A few times in 2020, I journaled in community with others who just needed to come together in an unconventional way (due to COVID, of course). We journaled, think deeply, and reflect together. I was like, “This is cool.” The host, Shana Chivon, has since moved on to other things.

Then, earlier in 2021, I attended a virtual retreat where we participated in quite a bit of journaling over days. THAT was powerful for me (thanks Casandra Austin-McDonald!) Her main work is coaching empaths for self-care.

Well, I’ve decided to take the best of those two group experiences, add my love of reading, and host journaling experiences for women who need to save (or make) space in their lives for journaling individually and in community. Really, it’s for all of us who are probably, as my grandmother would say, “doing too much” and “need to get somewhere and sit down with your own thoughts.” It is self-care, reflection, growth, re-thinking, prayer, putting the crown on straight, therapeutic–all of that!

I sent out an invitation to some segments of my email list and got quite a few folks to join me. Woo hoo! I’m super-excited about the healing, the freedom, the laughter, the deep-thinking…whew!

If you missed the invitation this time, be sure you’re on my email list so I can let you know when I do it again!

Well, that’s pretty much what’s going on with me. What’s up with you? Be sure to leave a comment, I’d love to see what’s happening in your neck of the woods!

Be blessed!

-Michelle