Saturday, December 4, 2010

Some Thoughts...

November 30th, about 11:30 p.m., I sat in my living room and thought...tomorrow they'll start reading.

TOMORROW THEY'LL START READING!!!! Oh my goodness. Are you kidding me?

I started wondering (okay, WORRYING) about what people would think when they picked up the book for the first time. Would they like it? Would they keep reading?

God was very nice to me and let me bump into someone about 7:55 a.m. on December 1...and he told me he'd read chapter one at breakfast and was very impressed. I was enormously relieved! Since then...I've started getting some feedback. Thought I'd share a little of it with you!

(After telling my sweet friend Ronda about my freak-out fest the night before...) Freak out not needed….Day 1 was absolutely wonderful. I’m looking forward to this, another journey with you, very much!! - Ronda

Several in my office starting reading today, too. All I can say is “good stuff." I wanted to keep reading, but I think I will re-read day one later this afternoon to make sure that I did not miss anything. You are so very talented and you should consider your writing a true gift. Jenny (my Monday lunch date who has also been a huge champion of the book among her friends!)

I guess it was a bad idea to do my reading - and marking thereof- at the breakfast table this morning. I have apparently given Esther the idea that your book falls into the "ok to write in" category. At some point today when I wasn't watching, she marked her favorite portions of day two. (In case you're wondering, she highlighted the words "angel's visit" and "Toddler!" – Julie C.

I finished reading His Advent. I have to admit that I read it through, and not as a devotional---that I am waiting for the Advent! The queries that you pose are thought provoking and understandable for a person in this time and space, and makes the Advent a more timeless experience. Congratulations on an excellent achievement---the Spirit led life in which you live is most evident. – Jennifer

L-O-V-E today's reading! You have such a way of painting the picture, I feel like I was there too! Awesome!!! - Julie C. (This completely warmed my heart - it's exactly what I hoped people would feel when they read!

I have started your book. Three days in and loving it already! – Jonathan C.

I just finished the pages for today in your book and I really like it. I read yesterday's and then this morning in choir we were singing a song about Mary and I was immediately reminded of what I read yesterday. Certain things you’ve written I can totally see you saying. – Megan N. (This was a huge compliment. Megan is a teenager in my church!)

Your book came today and I sat down and ready the 1st two days - Bekah - you are so extremely gifted. WOW! It was with tears in my eyes that I closed this book knowing that I NEEDED IT this season. Thank you for speaking God's words to me during this busy, crazy season - I can't wait to sit daily and devour what you have written. I am sending an email to my homeschool mommas right now telling them all about your book -- it is amazing! – Jami J. (Back in the day, when I was a demonstrator for Stampin' Up!, Jami was my upline. I am aware that my days of stamp selling have helped me with the marketing side of this adventure!)

Really enjoying your book so far!! - Molly.

Are you focusing on the real reason for Christmas or are you getting bogged down in the craziness of the season? It's so easy to do! I am blessed to be reading a new Advent book that I would LOVE to recommend to all my friends -- it is called HIS ADVENT: Still His Greatest Gift by Rebekah Freelan - Thanks Bekah for blessing life and touching my heart this CHRISTmas season! - Jami (from above) put this as her Facebook status the day she got the book. Thanks, Jami!)

The evening of December 1st, I put as my Facebook status, "couch + fireplace + fleece blanket + Christmas tree = happiness." And Randy (the father of one of my students) commented + His Advent for a little reflective reading and a friend from work, Cindy, added Yes! And your devo book. Loving it!!! I loved those affirmations! Thanks, guys!

At Jesus' birth Joseph "declared simultaneously to his Father & Son that this was Immanuel....when Jesus arrives, He brings a life we cannot envision."
Rebekah Freelan
I was quoted in a Facebook status! Ronda listed this after reading day two.

I'm enjoying your Advent book! You have such a reflective quality, and through all of your questions, it's sparked my own reflection! - Jody (who published her first novel with Bethany House Publishers this year!)

And friend Kari sent me this picture:

She and her mom go on an annual shopping trip with two of their friends, and this year, the four of them used my book as their shopping trip devotional! :) Love it!

Friday, December 3, 2010

IWU Bookstore Signing

Happy Thanksgiving! I think it's pretty appropriate that I have pictures to share with you from my last book signing...because the book is one of my greatest blessings this year. It has been a bright spot in the middle of the heartache!

This was the first time I saw my book on a shelf with other exciting!

The IWU Bookstore offered a signing to me - which I really appreciated! It was over a couple hours at lunch on Tuesday - and they put me right there at the entrance at a little table!

I had a bunch of visitors - some already had books but just came to support me, which I absolutely appreciated! This is Angi (remember her from the crafting weekend?) and her husband Greg. He works in my office. He was a good boy and wore his nametag that day. I was a rebel. Anyway. They brought me a frappe to energize me. Oh WOW was it good. The most carameled frappe I've ever had!!

Another work buddy - and great support to me this year especially! This is Kristin. She happened to have the day off and was able to come through town to see me! Thanks for making the trip up, Kristin! I miss you this week at work!

This beautiful lady was my second grade Sunday School teacher! It was in her class that I learned to look up Bible verses. She was also a HUGE support to me as I grew up - really a champion for me at church. I appreciate her so much!

Jonathan dressed up for the occasion. Okay that's a lie. He had a recital. :) But doesn't it sound good to say he dressed up just for this? He, by the way, wins the prize for being the first person to ever buy my book! He ordered it online the minute I told him it was live and ready!

These lovely ladies are my work buddies. Sandee and Tammy work next door to me in the Business Office and believe me - they put up with a LOT of stories and drama.

I love this girl! This is Judy, my work neighbor. She already had a book, but she wanted me to sign her hand and she said she'd never EVER wash it. LOL!!!!!

My Dad was manning the front door to the bookstore throughout the signing and when the IWU President wandered by, he ended up inside buying my book. Dad SAYS he came in of his own accord...goodness I hope so! :)

Speaking of are my parents with me. The book is dedicated to them! They sacrificed significantly so I could go to college to learn this craft!

Pat Travis...who works down in our Registrar's Office...and is a SWEET friend of mine. She was running behind in getting to the signing and actually called the bookstore to make sure I would stay until she got there. :) Love her!

My work has been beyond understanding this week while I've been out on book stuff. They're great and I'm so glad I had the chance to do a signing right there where I work!

Radio Interview on WBCL!

I am SO EXCITED to tell you about my trip to WBCL! Of course, because I live for such things, I have pictures for you. :)

Here's a little tour of my day. First of all...I got to see my name on the weekly schedule. That was pretty exciting! (Yes, I took a picture of the screen. Come know you love my quirks.)

So, that Monday morning, I left home about 8:00 (vacation days don't always equal sleep, you know) with a big mug of coffee and my attempt at a trendy outfit. Yes, I know it's radio and it doesn't matter what I wear. But you know you can do a better interview when you feel festive. It was my first time with a sweater dress. I was nervous.

The radio station was just a little over an hour away from home - and I could have done a phone interview, but I really wanted the whole experience. And my boss told me I had to go. Had to do it in person. No argument there! So I drove Larry the GPS this time. Also no printer ink at the moment, so I had my hand-copied googled directions in my lap. The bad thing about that operation is the paper doesn't say TURN HERE. So I definitely missed the turn and had to do some hunting. But I found it!!

The Mid-Morning program was actually already underway when I arrived at the studio. I was probably 3 miles away from the station when it began and I heard Lynne, the host, say my name as a guest. I screamed in the car. Yes. I did.

When I arrived, they took me back to the studio, and I got to sit right here:

Jamie, the producer, brought me a water bottle and I put on the headphones and listened to the other guests, who were all call-in interviews. I especially enjoyed the author right before me, because she also wrote a Christmas book! (She's the same author who wrote The Christmas Shoes...) And then it was my turn.
The only technical glitch was that my microphone wasn't turned on when I started talking. So if you listened on the archive and wondered what you was "Good morning." There. Now your day is complete.
This is Lynne, who interviewed me...

She was SO gracious. When it came time for me to talk, I seriously considered throwing up, but I just turned my chair to focus on her and it really felt like it was just the two of us having a conversation without the hundreds (thousands?) of people out there listening. She put me right at ease. She'd very kindly emailed me a list of possible questions the day before the interview, so I had some time to formulate responses that hopefully excluded the word "um." I really enjoyed the talk - and even though I got some extra questions I hadn't known were coming - I felt right at home answering them!

This is Jamie - who felt just like a kindred spirit. Since I was the last interview of the morning, we stood around talking for a while after, and I just loved sharing with both of them! They were so encouraging...about the interview...the sweater dress current story in life. (Lynne asked me to share a bit about the blog, so I was excited about that!)
It was so fun, after it was over, to see all the texts my friends sent to encourage me - and I had a bunch of notes on Facebook, too, so that was fun! I worry so much about over-Bekah-ing everyone this Christmas. Really do not want to do that. So to feel so loved and supported was great. (Apparently my office buddies all tuned in at their desks and got some simultaneous laughs over some of my Bekah-lines.)
It was just the best possible day. I loved being there with them, I loved the feedback they gave me, and I loved knowing God was and is at work behind the scenes of even a radio spot!
This radio station is very near to my heart. You know the six a.m. serenade?? Yep - this station! It was very special for me to be able to talk about the book on their airwaves. Thank you so much, Lynne and Jamie, for being gracious hostesses! You made my day!

Chapel Pike Book Signing

The Sunday before Thanksgiving, I went to my old church, Chapel Pike Wesleyan, to be at their Thanksgiving lunch and sign books. It was so great to see everyone again!

Right now, they have to hold their all-church gatherings at an elementary school cafeteria, because the church doesn't have a room large enough to hold everyone. (Just explaining the decor you're about to see!)

This is my friend, Cheryl. She and her husband, John, did so much to help me when I was first out on my own! They were the first Habitat for Bekah crew! They helped me paint rooms and hang blinds and put together furniture. Never ever could have made it without them!

This is Karen and her daughter, Kaitlin. I met Karen when I taught the ladies Bible study at Chapel Pike. Kaitlin came with her sometimes. Karen told me Kaitlin bought the book with her own money!!

Kaitlin and her book! (And seriously...she's that tall next to me while I'm wearing HEELS???)

It was great to be in church with Faith again. We were pew buddies when I went there before, so I got to sit with her again. :)

Wanna hear a funny? The church bulletin said "His Advent: Still His Greatest Gift by Rebekah J. Freelan, is available in the foyer for $10." One of my friends told me after church that she was reading that announcement when she got distracted by something. She'd read just as far as the title before she got distracted, so when she resumed reading, this is what she saw: "Rebekah J. Freelan is available in the foyer for $10." I laughed so hard!!!

Ever the professional.

Here I am with Laura Plummer...who was one of my crafting buddies last weekend!

CAIL!!! (I got the wrong name on Facebook.) This is Miss Cail, who is my new buddy. She wanted to know why I was writing in books. :) Great. Hope I didn't start a bad habit.

The Birthday Boy! Mr. Joseph Holland is now FIVE years old. And when the kids shared what they were thankful can know he was most thankful to have a birthday!

Joseph's sister, Jessica, took over my camera for a while....and she found Kaleb Hutchins. He's kind of shy.

No idea. I cannot explain myself.

Brian Holland! You made the blog! How do you feel? :) Pastor Brian has been an amazing support and encouragement to me...even talking me into teaching junior high Sunday School with him back in the day! And rumor has it that last weekend, while I was crafting with his wife, he texted her "Any word on the broccoli salad being at the Thanksgiving lunch next week?" So I hope you got some, Brian!

Pastor Brian's lovely wife, Jaye. We try to coordinate whenever possible. Yesterday we were hair twins, clothing twins AND broccoli salad twins!

Marty and Lori came to my signing at the Greentown Library...but they go to Chapel Pike, too, so we had another chance to have a picture!! I seriously do have to tell you that aisle runner story from their wedding.

This is one of my new friends, Lara. I've been attending Chapel Pike's ladies Bible study this fall, because they're doing a Beth Moore study and you know how I love me some Beth Moore. Lara started coming to church there since I left, so I'm only just now meeting her! She's a sweetheart.

Remember this cuteness? Last time I saw her, she was toothless! Man I've missed her. (I am aware that my arm is freakishly freaky in this picture. But we only had so much room to work with and my camera is big.)

And her brother...who is still a cuddler. I love that.

And her OTHER brother who is one and has no interest WHATSOEVER in sitting still. Even for pictures. Perhaps ESPECIALLY for pictures.

So that was my day with the Chapel Pike gang. Thanks so much for hosting me!! Miss you guys!