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A sweet Story

23 Feb

by Stephanie J Grace

aka Stephanie Becken

When my son was born 4 years ago, our first outing was to church. Our home congregation is one I treasure. They aren’t just people I see on Sunday, they are my friends, my family. That morning, Tanner was maybe 5 days old, just itty bitty, but everyone had been waiting to meet him–I couldn’t stay home! I remember one of the ladies, a doctor, said something about protecting newborns from germs, even as she cooed over him. It was special.

Fast forward to the busy toddler years, and Tanner was a well known fixture. To make it even better, there were 3 other little boys born the same month, so Tanner and his buddies were chief smile-bringers and joyful noise makers. Children’s message time had become a time to watch the boys–what would they do this time?

At that time, our church had two pastors, Ed and David. As soon as Tanner could talk, he called them ‘god’. The pastors were so wonderful about this–they always corrected him and said something about how it was special they could worship and praise God together, but helped him say their names. Tanner ended up calling them a hybrid of names–god, god-Dave, god-Ed–though usually, Dave got called Ed and vice versa.

Then Ed got sick. Very sick. Tanner was about 3 when he notice the Sr Pastor no longer came to church. Ed had been diagnosed with cancer, and did best at home between treatments. Tanner asked Dave where God was every Sunday. Pr Dave was so good with Tanner, and he’d tell him he was sure Ed missed him, too.

Ed died in June after a hard fight with cancer. I still miss him, and so do my kids. Shortly after Ed passed, Dave took a new job at another church. We miss him, too. A new pastor came in to help our congregation transition to a new path. His name is Pastor Ralph, and right from the start, Tanner called him Pastor Ralph. He likes the ‘f’ sound. I thought that because of Tanner’s age, he had a better understanding of identity, hence, he always called Pastor Ralph by his name.

This week, that changed. Tanner celebrated his 4th birthday this week, and in major birthday mindset, started asking about everyone’s birthday. He asked when ‘god’s’ birthday was. I thought he meant Jesus at Christmas. Nope. He meant Ralph. “When is God’s birthday? We should make him a cake. He really likes my glasses. Do you think he’ll eat soup at church with us like god Dave did?”

At church this week, Tanner, who had called Pr Ralph by name for months, chased after him, wanting a hug from god. I reminded Tanner of his name, and I will keep reminding him. I know Ralph will help, too, but I’m going to treasure this while it lasts.

My son sees God in the people who love him, and he’s pretty sure everyone loves him. I want that to last forever, and for him to grow into a person who tries to be the same for others. Tanner is little and innocent, and learning about God in a faith community that loves him and all the little ones who come to worship and grow.

I had a good cry today, remembering Ed and Dave, especially Ed, who baptized my kids, gave me my first communion, and answered dozens of faith questions for me. When my middle daughter was a toddler, he’d stop by our pew on his way out of the sanctuary, and share a pretzel from her snack bag.  I have hundreds of church stories, and they’re on my mind.

I’m also prayerful and thankful for my church family–including Pr. Ralph, who is going to have a Tanner on his  tail for a while. With birthday cake and lots of questions.

All the best,

Stephanie

New Release and a give-away!!

13 May

I am so excited to present this second sweet title. Felines and Flowers has been a joy story–one that makes my heart happy and I hope my readers will find Easy Peasy another shot of sugar to leave you smiling!

Easy Peasy1600x2400-no-logoEasy Peasy is finally here!!

Myra’s childhood in a prepper bunker facilitated her self-sufficiency, but at twenty-four, she’s tired of being a lone mitten. With her business keeping her busy, she’s not sure when she’ll find Mr. Right, but hopes he likes long walks in the park and princess movies.

Oakes Willowbee, just starting his prepping, needs all the help he can get. Former military and in over his head, he’s trying to get his life in order to be ready for a worldwide catastrophe, but he’s having a hard time getting past sheep. With Myra’s help, Oakes gets a taste of prepper life, but his fascination with preparedness might kill their budding relationship.

Despite the attraction between them, finding a balance between living and surviving could be anything but easy peasy.

Buy Now: http://www.decadentpublishing.com/product_info.php?products_id=775&osCsid=pj3p32lnk1blgc24or0r1391v0

Buy Now at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Easy-Peasy-Prepper-Romance-ebook/dp/B00CP8I642/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1368483691&sr=1-1&keywords=easy+peasy

To Celebrate, I’m offering a giveaway! If you were a prepper–or if you are a prepper–what is your favorite item to have stocked to the rafters? Remember to leave your first name and your email so I can get a hold of the winners!!

I will give away 2 goody bags (US only, sorry) containing all sorts of prepper fun for summer as well as ebooks of Easy Peasy for each winner–format of choice. Winners to be announced May 20th!!

All the very best,
Stephanie J Grace
http://www.facebook.com/StephanieJGrace
http://www.pinterest.com/StephanieJGrace
http://www.twitter.com/StephanieJGrace

Prepping

31 Jan

2013 is already proving to be wild at the Grace/Beck household. I have all three kiddos home now (homeschooling the eldest), a wicked cold winter, husband working 10 hour days 6 days a week…just busy! And Blessed!!

 

I’m very happy to announce 2013 will have a new Stephanie J Grace title–Easy Peasy: A Prepper Romance from Bono Books–part of Decadent Publishing.

 

I had never thought to write about prepping until asked for this call, but it’s something I know moderately well. What is prepping you ask? Prepping is the act of preparing, but in this case, the prepping is in preparation of the future.

This could be as simple as stocking paper products and shampoo in bulk when you find them on sale. (This is my kind of prepping. I have shelves of tp, paper towels, laundry soap, body wash, bleach, etc. I have the room and we go through the stuff pretty quickly, so when I find it on sale and have a coupon…I use my space!)

It can go much further though, with bomb shelters, a decade’s worth of food and supplies set aside, all cash into gold, going into full trade communities to avoid usuing cash–it can get intense. Depending on a person’s motivation for prepping, the extremes are definitely there to try if you have the time, patience and money.

 

My preppers in Easy Peasy…well, they are a mix of heavy prepping but everyday life. On one hand they see so much value in being ready for anything, but on the other they want to enjoy going to movies, going on vacation, eating what they like–it’s a balance.

 

I can’t wait to tell you more about my story, due out this spring. I’ll post more about prepping as well.

 

Take care, stay warm and enjoy your day!

Stephanie J Grace

 

Come find me on Facebook! http://www.facebook.com/StephanieJGrace

and on Pinterest www.pinterest.com/StephanieJGrace

 

Where to find me this week

21 Jul

I’m just all over and sooo thankful to be hosted by some fantastic writers and bloggers.

 

This week find me visiting:

 

Sarah Ballance for an interview:  http://sarahballance.wordpress.com/

 

Sizzling Hot Reviews for an interview: http://www.sizzlinghotbooks.com

Ashlynn Monroe’s for a Spotlight on Felines and Flowers: http://ashlynnmonroe.com/

Also! Help me celebrate the release of Alix Richards’ Twin Flames: Soul Bound–her debut novella on July 27th! So proud of my very first crit partner 🙂 You can find more about Alix at her Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Alix-Richards/163865084640

All the best! I hope to see you around the web this week 🙂

 

Stephanie J Grace

Facebook Page a-go!!

18 Jun

Last week I mentioned a give away when my author Facebook page reached 100 likes…well, this weekend it did! Thanks so much for all who have liked the page (I like having a sweet page to post the things in writing and life that make me smile). If you haven’t liked it yet, head over to www.facebook.com/StephanieJGrace and hit the ol’ like button. While you’re there, make sure you hover over my name and add me to your timeline so you get the updates…like the ones that announce winners!!

 

3 Random ebook winners. Contact me for your format choice of Felines and Flowers!!

 

Amy M B

Steph N

Kelly H

 

I double checked on the initials and there shouldn’t be any doubling up 🙂  I can’t wait to do this again when the likes reach 200, so pass it on!!

 

Happy Monday, All!

Take care 🙂

 

Stephanie J Grace

 

 

Life Moves Me

26 May

You know those women who get choked up for no real reason and can cry on a dime? Yeah, that’s me.

 

Since the birth of my first daughter I’ve found that I am simply more emotional. It’s not something that encroaches on my life or has me reaching for professional help. I can face the hard and tragic things in life with grace and strength–oh I’ll cry with a friend who has been hurt and cry with people I adore when a parting approaches–but I find it’s the happy, everyday things that really make my eyes burn.

 

My eldest, Grace, gives my middle daughter, Joy, piggy back rides and tries to cheer her up by letting her wear her ‘big’ shirts, even though Grace’s clothes are much to big for Joy. When Joy falls down, Grace picks her up and on super hard days, she’ll pat her head. Heaven forbid Joy tries to hug Grace too much, but when it counts, my big girl’s big sister techniques touch my heart. She’ll drop what she’s doing to pick up the baby boy if he trips. She makes me proud–and that makes me cry a little.

 

My middle daughter, Joy, looks at life with these eyes that are soooo wide. She has the most amazing imagination and I get the giggles just listening to the world she builds. She loves to hold babies and tell them they are beautiful and that when they are big she’ll push them on the swing and let them touch her dollies if they promise not to bite their toes. She cries when her friends get hurt because ‘it breaks her heart’. She makes my heart feel like it could fly–and that makes me cry.

 

And then there’s my baby. He’s fifteen months old and is all boy. He’s silly and sweet and gets into everything. When we have visitors of the itty bitty baby kind, he loves to sit by them and give them hugs. He worries when they start crying and tries to give them their nuks. When he can’t he runs the nuk to me and in his way, demands that I fix the crying one. Sometimes he’s too busy to give me hugs and kisses, but sometimes he’ll crawl up on my lap and pull my head down until it’s on his shoulder so he can hug and kiss me. He’s growing so fast and this moment too will pass before I”m ready. His excitement for life makes me hold my breath for the next step–and that makes me cry.

 

Just so you don’t think it’s all kid related, I cry during movies, when I read books, when an especially touching coffee commercial comes on–you name it and I’m pretty okay with being moved. Since I’ve embraced my crying ways, I feel less stress and I feel closer to the world around me. I want God to give me a million sweet reasons to cry–I don’t mind buying more tissues 🙂

 

Any other criers out there? What sets you off?

 

All the best,

Stephanie J Grace

Felines and Flowers for Spring

11 May

Decadent Publishing’s new Bono Books features sweeter romance, including–Felines and Flowers. Check out Felines and Flowers as well as many other wonderful YA and sweet romance stories now!

 

Felines and Flowers

During high school, Warren was just Wendy’s youth pastor. All grown up and shepherding over her own flock of church kids, Wendy Miller turns to her old friend for help. Not that Warren is that old. In fact, the two have a lot more in common than Wendy would have ever thought.
After the death of his wife, Warren was sure he was finished with relationships. Wendy changes that forgone conclusion with her bright spirit and zest for life. Lining up their desires when they’re at very different points in their lives proves a challenge that might take a little divine intervention, or at least help from friends.

http://bonobookstore.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=2_12&products_id=56

http://www.amazon.com/Felines-and-Flowers-ebook/dp/B005EZNPDK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1336759491&sr=8-1

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/felines-and-flowers-stephanie-j-grace/1104728494?ean=2940011442636

 

Enjoy something sweet this spring 🙂

 

All the Best,

Stephanie J Grace