Retreat, Hoodwinked Filming, Strawberry Jam & the Cutest Great-Niece EVER!

{Congrats to Julie Walker, winner of the $50 Visa date night gift card! You’ll be getting an email shortly from my assistant Sheila asking for your contact info.}


So, I’ve been a little busy lately.

In order to catch you up on where I’ve been and what I’ve been doing, here are some snapshots of my past few weeks:


I took a very rare getaway with some close friends to refresh, renew, laugh and share ideas.

We are all bloggers so we took turns brainstorming with each other. Shared our favorite new apps. And our most-loved shortcuts and strategies. We ate out a little. {Ok…a lot!} Got pedicures one afternoon too.

I saved up for 6 months for this fun getaway and it was much needed. Although I travel about once a month to speak or do media appearances, I never go away just for fun. With my youngest child entering his last year of high school, that’s hopefully gonna change soon!




Hoodwinked Filming 

Then, my friend and co-author Ruth Schwenk from thebettermom.com and I filmed the Bible study portion of our upcoming book Hoodwinked: Ten Myths Moms Believe & Why We All Need to Knock It Off.  Isn’t the set fabulous?




885580_667936400005556_5345238183323205368_oRuth & me before make up and then after we wrapped up the filming!



The make-up artist and stylist from New Seele Studio and me. {Pssst…it is my daughter Kenna who used to get scolded for cutting her dolls’ hair and getting into my lipstick when she was little!}


The crew from 52 Watts Studio.

crewOne of the crew who snuck my phone when I wasn’t looking and took a selfie!


The second day of filming the wrap-ups at a different, very retro, location. {Just look at that vintage toaster collection!}


11709989_667973496668513_5068816641665667551_oThe filming was fun but I am ALWAYS very nervous. Thankfully my amazing group of four girlfriends who pray for me daily {and keep me sane} all drove and flew in to be there. This is our attempt at a selfie without the luxury of a selfie stick.


In a Jam

When I got home, I made strawberry jam. Well, my hubby, son, and my son’s girlfriend helped me on day one. On day two, my mom {who would never let me take her picture} also helped. At the end, we had put up the equivalent of 52 pints of jam. However, I can some in quarts because at my house–with my sons and their buddies who hang out here–we can go through a quart of it in about a week!

*NOTE: Please notice my youngest son in the background lying on the couch NOT HELPING even though he is the one who consumes the most of Mama Karen’s strawberry jam. His excuse? He is in the midst of a dual sports season: football conditioning and travel baseball. It leaves him with little energy. Thus the couch potato status was tolerated. {But just wait until salsa season. He’ll be crying his eyes out from all the onion and jalapeño chopping I’m gonna make him do!}



jamThe Cutest Great-Niece EVER!!!

And finally…so many of you were kind and thoughtful as you prayed for our family when my sister-in-law Thais fought cancer for three years and then passed away last October in hospice. I thought you’d love a peek at her first grandchild, my first great niece, born to her son Matt and his wife Jessica.

Welcome Sabina Thais!


This is baby Sabina posing on an heirloom chopping block that has been in the family for over a half century and that was passed down to her dad. Her head is being propped up by a banana. Yep. Our clan is all fancy-like with our family photography, don’t ‘cha know. ;-)

11722269_667978406668022_3719656507897431666_oAnd finally….a summer shot from the corner near my country neighborhood. No place like home.

887367_667973626668500_6728466081576983398_oWhew. It has been a crazy few weeks. I hope your summer is full of wonderful craziness too!

Similar Posts


  1. Oh My Gosh, you have been busy in the BEST way ; ) The pictures are all perfect (too bad you can’t coax your Mom) and that great-niece, beautiful! Thank you for sharing xo

  2. What a great post! Thanks for the words and all the photos. Looking forward to the new study. God Bless You! :-)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *