Blog Hop…Why I write.

As my 3 year old gains coordination, my husband and I have had a lot of fun trying to teach her new activities.  Forward somersaults, balancing, and jumping all included.  One such game that has been introduced is hopscotch.  Of course everything in our home reverts back to a Curious George reference (who knew that darn monkey had done SOOOO many things!).  Thankfully, there is an entire episode where George conquers the most epic hopscotch ever so Samara thus loves to play the game (season 2, episode 36, just in case you are dying to see it for yourself.  I know you are).

Think of this as a slightly altered, not-really-the same-at-all, cyber-version of hopscotch.  This is called a blog hop.  I was featured (along with a couple other people) by a friend who reads my blog and I then get to feature a couple of the blogs I follow* to introduce you to all that is wonderful in blogs-ville.

*On a side note, I realized how many blogs I follow where I don’t actually know the people and have had minimal interaction, if any at all.  I think I need to work on that, seeing as many of those I follow are for future hopes towards networking.

So my friend, Stephanie Reeves, included me in her blog hop last week.  My husband and I met Stephanie through working with the youth at our church in Orlando, Fl.  She has three amazing kids, two of which were in the youth group while we were leaders.  The entire family is awesome but of course, there was a minor detail with Stephanie being a Raiders fan and Kyle being a Broncos fan, but you know…minor details 😉

Stephanie, who has worked as a writer and editor for Cru, as well as a teacher, currently has two blogs: Compelled and That Senior Year.  She says, “Compelled is a mish mash of thoughts. Most of the time I use things I come across in everyday life to draw a spiritual parallel. Sometimes I talk about parenting; sometimes I talk about current events.”  And That Senior Year is chronicling her eldest’s final year in high school.


For this particular Blog Hop, each writer will answer four questions about their blog and their writing.  Then I get the opportunity to introduce you to a few bloggers that I adore (and think you should too)!  Ok, so here we go.

1.What am I writing or working on? Sooo…I just submitted my manuscript for my first book (insert happy/nervous shriek), Getting Past the Start.  With the first step (or 20) completed and waiting for the next round of edits to come back, I am currently researching for my next book which focuses on the idea of being sanctified and how that shapes our identity (you’ll hear more about it as I process my thoughts/frustrations/excitement).

Then I have this wonderful blog that serves as a melting pot for my thoughts/frustrations/excitements (see above).  It’s called simply living the life because I focus on everyday issues that I encounter as a wife, as a mom, as a mentor to youth, as a young woman trying to achieve her goals, but mostly as a daughter of God.  Sometimes the posts are serious and (hopefully) thought provoking and sometimes they drip with sarcasm (my attempt at humor though it may or may not translate as well as it does in the voice in my head).

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre? I think that I have a unique ability to reach a pretty broad spectrum of people.  I have a sincere passion to reach the group dubbed YA (young adult), which includes teenagers and college kids, but I feel that many of my viewpoints can be equally appreciated by older generations (no, I did not just call you old. I promise).

God’s been grooming my heart and has begun to lay a true passion for understanding our identity in Christ.  This is something relevant for every person, of every socioeconomic background, of every race, of every generation.  I pray that I do it justice in my method of communication.

3. Why do I write what I do?  My husband (and all other members of my family) would be the first to tell you that I am a verbal processor.  Sometimes it comes out as what I unattractively call verbal vomit.  Those are moments when my brain is processing something beyond what I understand but I can’t contain it so I begin to verbally think through each and every aspect of it.  Sometimes, that’s how I write and sometimes, it’s the start of an idea that I then write about once I have processed it to a greater extent.

I write because I can’t contain it.  I love sharing insight as God grants it to me and I long to reach the masses with His messages.  I try to keep it real and approachable, but more than anything, true to the verity that God has revealed.

4. How does my writing process work? see above.  Seriously though, many times my blogs are a digital print out of my thought process at that particular moment.  I don’t edit much (if any) to keep it true and real.  It allows me the opportunity to fully develop a thought as it’s happening.

For the books…I’m honestly still figuring that one out.  I’ll let you know when I know 😉

Okay, now that you know a bit more about me and my writing, let me introduce you to a couple people:

2013-05-05 13.38.02First up is one of my favorite guys in the world, my dad, Charlie Shinn.  Yes, I am slightly biased but I love how he shares his heart on his blog, Integrity Dad.

First and most importantly(by his emphasis), he is saved by the grace of his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  He says, “I find that each day comes with the opportunity to walk with integrity following the example that Christ set for each of us 2000 years ago.  I seek to be a man of integrity, not to position myself above those around me for it is only by His grace that I even take my next breath.  But I seek integrity to be an example to others and to do all that I can to place a smile on God’s face.  My heart’s desire is that one day I will hear Him say “well done, good and faithful servant”.

I’m have been blessed to be married to my very best friend for 33 years and the blessings overflow when I add in two beautiful daughters, two son-in-laws, and four blessed grandchildren.  I’m a Christ-follower, a husband, a father, a grandfather, a farmer, and one who loves the world that God has placed me.
All that I am, all that I do, and all that I hope to be … it is not I but Christ who lives in me.”  I’m proud to be his daughter and I think you will appreciate the insight that he offers.
Next up is my friend John Fournier.  We got to know John and his wife while working with the youth.  He has an
incredible way of engaging you right where you’re at, which makes him an incredible youth leader. John is a transplant to Orlando from New England, a new husband and father, an avid sports fan, and a broken man trying to live an uncommon life through the
grace of God. He has a heart for helping others and it is evident by his passion for serving in youth ministry.
His blog, Who Are You?, was founded as a way to continue sharing his experiences with people of all ages, specifically youth, to try and help them figure out who God made them to be. Having traveled all over the country for his old job, he has impacted many communities and uses blogging to try and stay connected and influential. While not a self-proclaimed writer, John strives to expand the platform God has given him to reach out to as many people as possible
The last, but certainly not least, is Jonathan DugginsI got to know his wife, Stephanie, through the moms group at our church in Orlando.  Dad to three adorable little boys, he created this masterpiece of a blog that never fails to bring a smile to my face.  The Dad Workout takes some of the monotony and exhausting side effects of parenting and makes it fun and hilarious. Taken from the home page: “This revelation brought about the birth of another baby in my life:  The Dad Workout.  The photographs and posts on this site were inspired by experiences I’ve had as a new dad with my boys.  All the families featured here are real.  Disclaimer:  If you’re looking for a serious workout plan, this is not it.  The exercises featured here were created to make you sweat a little but ultimately to laugh about what we go through to raise the next generation.  Share your stories and photos of fatherly awesomeness.  Join the ranks of men as we grab fatherhood by the love handles and bask in the glory of everything DAD. “
If you are a parent, or think that you may be at some point, or even if know for a certain that you will never ever in a million years submit yourself to that kind of torture, you need to check out The Dad Workout.
On a side note, my husband won second place in a contest they were doing.  You can see it here.  Yeah, I’m proud.
Ok, that’s it from me I guess.  Hope you enjoy these 3 new blogs to explore!

2 thoughts on “Blog Hop…Why I write.

  1. Nice job, Becca! I follow John’ blog, and I’ve seen Jonathan’s mentioned on Facebook, but I haven’t visited it myself. I’ll have to check out your dad’s as well. Thanks for playing blog hop with me!

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