30 Day Vlogging Challenge

Vlogging Challenge

I am entering a 30 day challenge that is really going to stretch me!

Here are the challenge instructions:

Welcome! Ready, Set, Vlog!!

We have a challenging 30 days ahead… But together we can succeed!

Start filming April 1st!

1. You must film every day. DUH!

2. Create a separate video for each day.

3. Number your videos. Put your number at the very end of your video title. – advice from YouTube.com. This is for accountability!

4. Try to post within a day… don’t get backed up! The most important thing is that you film every day. Try to get your editing done before you start filming your next vlog! If your editing gets pushed back too many days, you may get too far behind to recover.

Upload to YouTube and/or Facebook

5. Promote the challenge: ‪#‎30dvc‬

To be successful, you must be held accountable. You don’t have to do this alone! As a community, we will encourage each other along!!

To have your YouTube feed posted along with the other 30 Day Vloggers, email me:
-once submitted, your feed will automatically update at http://30dayvloggingchallenge.blogspot.com

Once you have your first episode: post it to the group!

Here’s my video from today, which I created on iMovie.

Try out my 10-Day Social Media Challenge to build networks and increase engagement.

10-Day Social Media Challenge

Try out my 10-Day Social Media Challenge to build networks and increase engagement.

What’s more important than Google when it comes to driving traffic to your website, sales pages, and affiliate offers?

If you said social media, you’re right.

With billions of loyal users, social media sites like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram are now credited with more than 30% of all website traffic, according to a study by Shareaholic.

Clearly, we all need to pay attention to social media marketing, but if you’ve ever tried to put the power of social media to work for your business you may not have seen the results you wanted. Without a plan, it’s easy to flounder around, waste a lot of time, and not really achieve anything.

A good social media plan incorporates a mix of all the following elements:

  • Interesting and compelling content you create (your blog, videos, podcasts, etc)
  • Older content that still has value to your visitors (and you)
  • Other people’s content
  • Inspirational messages and quotes
  • Funny quotes and images
  • Events and offers
  • Personal stories

I will provide information and an assignment or challenge, each day Monday through Friday, for two weeks. You will have the opportunity to share ideas, ask questions, and learn along with others in a private Facebook Group as well as here on my website.

Ready? Click here to join the challenge now!

Not on Facebook? Send me an e-mail and I’ll get the information out to your inbox each day.

Questions or comments? Enter them in the comment section below.



Hope in the midst of darkness: the message of Easter

Have you ever wondered what it was like for the disciples of Jesus Christ on that first Easter?

  • to watch while Judas, one of their own, betrayed Jesus and handed him over to a band of men with weapons (John 18:3)
  • to stand by (except for Peter, who swung his sword and cut off one of the servant’s ears) while men bound and led away their master, hero, and leader (John 18:10-13)
  • for Peter to remember that Jesus had predicted all the disciples would flee and then hear the cock crow after he had denied one of his best friends, three times (John 18:16-27)
  • to listen while false charges were brought against Jesus, to hear Pilate say, “I find in him no fault at all,” and yet watch as Pilate delivered him over to be crucified (John 18:28-19:16
  • to watch Jesus go through the horrific death by crucifixion, knowing he was innocent (John 19:17-37)
  • to wonder what happened to their Messiah, the King of Kings. Why He was dead, and buried in a tomb, while they still lived under the oppression they thought He had come to save them from?

We know that the story did not end there. We know that Jesus rose from the dead on the third day, and showed himself to the disciples and over 500 other people.

“The resurrection of Jesus changes the face of death for all His people. Death is no longer a prison, but a passage into God’s presence.  Easter says you can put truth in a grave, but it won’t stay there.” (Clarence W. Hall)

Easter Hope

We all experience difficulties in our lives. No one is exempt. Some difficulties don’t last long; others drag on for weeks, months, and years. Where do we find hope to keep going in the midst of those dark times?

I find my hope in Jesus Christ and his resurrection from the dead. What about you? Share what you celebrate during this season.



John 11:21

Jesus and Grief: Thoughts on John 11

John 11 shows us that God understands our grief. Jesus knew Lazarus was going to die. He waited, and then he went to visit his friends, Mary and Martha.

Martha expresses her shock and anger, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” (vs. 21)

Jesus does not rebuke her. Instead he answers her questions and reminds Martha who he is.

Martha responds in faith – “I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.” (vs. 27)

Martha leaves and tells Mary that Jesus is there.

Mary repeats what Martha said, but is much more emotional – she falls at Jesus’ feet.

When Jesus sees her weeping, and many of her friends weeping as well, “He was deeply moved in spirit and troubled.” (vs. 33) He asks where Lazarus has been placed, and Jesus weeps (vs. 35).

I find it astonishing that Jesus weeps. He is the Almighty God who can do anything. He already knows that God the Father will raise Lazarus from the dead.

But still He weeps. And then He goes to the tomb where Lazarus is buried and calls him back from the dead.

I don’t know what you’re experiencing today, but God does. He not only sees your tears, but He also weeps with you. Tell him what’s on your heart, and trust Him to walk with you through your grief.

At times, Jesus gives us the desires of our hearts. At other times, there is silence. But no matter what, God is there.

If there is something you would like prayer for today, please share your request below. Remember:

“Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” Matthew 18:19,20 (NIV)

I shared a companion post today on A Beautiful Life, about how my daughter’s popped balloon reminded me of appropriate ways to deal with grief.


Summary – Booked by Josh Turner

As a self-published author, one of the topics that interests me is how people market their products. Last week I received a free copy of Josh Turner’s, Booked to preview. Inside the book there are links to a companion video series the reader can access free of charge.

Josh starts off the book by reminding us, “In order to get your next client, you must first get your next lead.”

  1. Position yourself in front of your prospects.
  2. Convert a percentage of these prospects into leads and appointments.
  3. Turn at least one of them into a client.

Josh admits most people already know this information, but he claims the problem is people don’t spend enough time on steps one and two in order to be successful at step three.

After the introduction, Josh shares the story of how his father built up a remodelling business, which was successful for many years, bringing in up to $1 million. However, the business eventually shut down because of a lack of clients. Josh joined a construction company, which did about $5 million in revenue, but in 2008, that company also shut down because the income didn’t cover the expenses.

Josh discounts all the training programs that claim they have “the golden ticket to a life of passive income where you sit on the beach and magically make money all day.”

“The #1 thing that prevents business owners from achieving growth is ‘the cash flow roller coaster.'”

Josh says the answer is to  have a system that “attracts your ideal clients, and works them through a process that culminates with them booking a time to speak with you.”

Booked quote

“Booked is a 5-step process that helps you quickly position yourself as an expert in your industry, directly connect you with an unlimited supply of prospects, and work them through processes that will generate a predictable number of leads and appointments.”

Obviously this process takes time to set up and maintain. Josh states that people who are willing to invest 30-60 minutes five days a week will find his system successful. Here is the process in a nutshell:

  1. Laying the foundation (Identifying your ideal prospect, where to find him/her, what matters to him/her)
  2. Establishing a leadership platform on Facebook or LinkedIn
  3. Building a database of prospects
  4. Developing a personalized messaging campaign with a request for a phone call follow-up
  5. Using e-mail strategies

Click here for more information from Josh Turner and his Booked system.

I appreciate Josh Turner’s reminders that this system requires work. Obviously he is hoping to engage readers and have them purchase his system.

Have you tried the booked system or something similar? How effective did you find it?

Stepping into 2016

I don’t know about you, but for me 2015 was one of the most difficult years I’ve had. There are issues I’m still working through which I can’t comment on, but in December my future was looking too dark for my comfort. I’m thankful that a few things happened in December to turn things around.

*I was able to get some extra sleep

*Some understanding friends helped me have fun and relax

*I spent a few days reading my Bible, reading some books, praying, and thinking about what I want to accomplish in 2016 

*I worked through some exercises in the workbook which accompanies The Art of Work by Jeff Goins

*Shelley Hitz of Author Audience Academy offered members Plan it Day: The World is Waiting, a helpful series of videos and worksheets

As a result, I was able to step into 2016 with a renewed perspective. 

My key word for 2016 is HOPE!

2016 Hope

Some of my goals this year:

*Memorize & meditate on verses from Ephesians (I have a group of friends who have agreed to cheer me on and hold me accountable in this area.)

*Be more mindful of what I’m eating and why (I’ve been reading Women, Food, and Desire by Alexandra Jamieson. Although I don’t agree with her worldview, I’m finding a lot of helpful information to help me conquer my bad eating habits.)

*Exercise at least 2x/week (I have a treadmill to use.)

*De clutter our house (I’m trying out DeClutter 365: Daily 15 Minute Missions )

*Write, record, publish, and market a book with imbedded MP3s on Hope (This project has been on my mind for months. Stay tuned for more details.)

As you step into 2016, what are your goals or aspirations? I’d love to hear about them in the comments below.

Keeping your Christmas tree healthy and happy

NOTE: Today I have a guest post on A Beautiful Life about our family tradition of going on a Christmas tree hunt.

Whether you cut your own Christmas tree down or purchase a real tree at the nearest Christmas tree lot, you want your tree to stay healthy and keep its needles as long as possible. Here are some tips:

Choosing a tree

Look for healthy branches with no signs of dryness or brown needles. At the Christmas tree lot, grab a branch and pull it towards you. When it springs back into place, you should only have a couple needles in your hand if the tree is healthy. Make sure you store the tree in a sheltered, cool spot until you are ready to decorate it.

Making room for your tree

Choose a spot in your home that is away from heat sources like the heat register. It should be close enough to a plug-in for the lights.

Setting the tree up

If the tree has been sitting for more than 4 hours or you purchased it from a lot, saw off a small round from the bottom of the trunk. This enables your tree to access water more easily, which keeps your tree vibrant and healthy. The bottom of the trunk should be straight to make it easier for you to mount it in a stand. (Wondering what makes a good stand? Check out 3 Best Christmas Tree Stand Designs.) The stand should be able to hold a good amount of water (some say up to a gallon) so that you don’t have to keep adding water.

There are some people who say just plain water is best and others who insist you need to add a few things to prevent mold and keep the needles on longer. Here are some recipes for Christmas tree food:


Safety Considerations

Make sure your light strands don’t have any exposed wires. Keep your tree away from heat sources. Take your tree down before it dries out.

More Information?


Do you have any more hints for taking care of a Christmas tree? What’s your favourite Christmas tradition? Please share in the comments below.

What is in your hand?

This blog has been silent for a while. I’ve been taking time to be still before God and ask Him what direction He wants to me take in my writing/blog/business. I don’t know about you, but I’m more like Martha than Mary. I’d rather be busy doing than be sitting still listening.

I’ve been thinking about things that I’m passionate about, things that energize me, things that are fun for me to do. These include:

  • Taking pictures
  • Creating graphics
  • Encouraging/mentoring people
  • Hearing how God is at work in people’s lives

For some people, social media is a waste of time, frustrating, confusing. That’s definitely not the case for me. Looking at the points I mentioned above, that makes sense – pictures and interaction with people are key on social media. In the new year, I will be sharing more. 

Melanie Fischer, one of my InScribe friends, wrote a great post about The Power of One. That reminded me of the poem above which was given to me when I worked as a school board trustee. 

What are you passionate about? What energizes you? What is fun for you? Are you participating, helping, practicing, being kind, working, inspiring, enriching, serving, growing, acting, and being good for something?