Altered Story Handmade Goods available at BookFinders!

| December 12, 2012

I’m excited to announce that Altered Story Handmade Goods has teamed up with another local business! BookFinders in Stevens Point, WI now offers repurposed hardcover books that have been altered into one-of-a-kind notebooks! Valuing the work of local artists and authors, BookFinders offers a wonderful selection of locally created goods, along with book accessories, candles, gifts, calendars and (of course) BOOKS! And, just like every other Altered Story purchase, 10% of profits from each sale benefits anti-trafficking organizations! So, sales help local business AND they change the world!

Altered Story notebook display at Bookfinders

Each of the notebooks are made of  incredibly unique hard cover books of all different kinds! Writers, both beginning and professional, will enjoy the lined papers found in some. Artists will appreciate the plain sketch papers found in others. Boys and girl of all ages will truly appreciate at least one of the vintage-book-turned-modern-canvas… for thoughts, dreams and ideas! Each book has divider pages, inside:  actual pages from the up-cycled book or unique retro papers, antique magazine pages or old fashioned wallpapers. No two books are alike!

Can you find the Altered Story notebooks?

What a perfect gift! Especially for creative souls who could benefit by having a journal just as lovely as the ideas put down on paper. Each book is bound with a professional grade tool that creates perfectly round and even holes through each and every paper. The wire bindings allow for wide-open page displays, making for wonderfully easy writing! What about using them for: a unique registry of that new baby’s hospital guests? that artistic/literary couple’s wedding guestbook? a child’s first journal? or even a scrapbook you’d like to remain open on your coffee table?

There they are! Right in front!

Whether it’s words or pictures that simply must be recorded, there is sure to be one Altered Story notebook that would be perfect for you or that special someone you have in mind. Make sure to get to BookFinders to check out the wonderful new selection of handmade treasures! And, remember, you can always check out Etsy for other unique Altered Story treasures!




“CHANGE the World”

| December 11, 2012

Changing the world by collecting change? Yup!
It all started with a group of wonderful women who had been praying for orphan children in Myanmar (old Burma). Our pastor and some people from our congregation had visited an orphanage there and discovered that, due to great poverty, the children survive on only three rice balls a day. There is a cesspool much too near the orphanage. So land is needed along with updates to the facilities. When these ladies were asking God how they could help, God gave them the idea to collect change. It was that simple. But, after that handful of praying ladies had raised hundreds of dollars among themselves, they asked if the pastor could share the vision with the entire congregation. He agreed that it made good sense. (Yes, I was tempted to type in “cents”, there. Are you glad I didn’t?) So, the challenge for our entire church to collect change and help the orphanage in Myanmar was presented.

Changing the world by collecting change

Our family mission is “Live in Christ. Change the World.” So, we wrote down our purpose (Change the World) on our collection can and got started. That was one month ago. Our kids had a blast emptying every nook and cranny of our house and cling-clanging the change into the tin. Whenever I found change, one of the kids would happily run the change to the tin to help “Change the World”. It’s been such a great experience for all of us.
We exchanged the coins at the bank, today! Now have twenty three dollar bills plus some coins. In just one month! I encouraged our boys to pray about what God would have them add (from their allowances) and my husband and I will do the same. I think a whole church of families taking this challenge will truly be able to make a difference.
Going forward, we will continue to put change in our “CHANGE the World” tin and donate the funds toward another cause close to our hearts. We will donate our change to fight the terrible reality of human trafficking.
Most of us have change lying around, don’t we? In our purses. At our nightstands. In our cars. Anywhere we empty our pockets. Think for a moment: What cause do you care most about? Why not start a “Change the World” tin, glass or bucket of your own?
What an easy and awesome idea! And, all because of some praying ladies.
I have to say it. Prayer does CHANGE things! (hehehehe)

First Annual Highland Church Arts & Crafts Show

| June 7, 2012

I really enjoyed an amazing first art show! It was the first annual art show for Highland  Church AND the first art show selling my handmade goods AND the first art show that I co-organized!  Together with many others, we raised almost $3,200 for Project Rescue! Project Rescue is a ministry to women and children caught in sexual slavery, and one of the organizations that I already support through Altered Story sales. Part of the fun and my responsibility was pulling together my first art show display! Here’s some pictures of my Altered Story booth. What do you think?

Wall Art, Magnets and Other Goodies at the Altered Story Booth

Mixed Media Art, Photo Mattes and Altered Story Bottle Cap Pins

Origami Heart Bookmarks, Birdhouse Block Decoration & Jewelry Galore!

Mixed Media, Decorative Photo Mattes, Game Board Wall Hooks & More Check out Etsy to find more goodies like these!

As the art show co-coordinator, it was a busy and fun experience to also pull together seasoned and emerging artists for a cause so close to my heart. Gathering artists for the show who do such beautiful and unique work was such a great aspect of the experience! Here’s just a sampling of the 18 artists who shared their treasures.

Photos By Rox - Roxanne Kauth was our show co-organizer! We made a great team!

PS Collections by Naomi Seiben Like her on facebook for updates on her photography and artwork!


Vintage Charm Creations by Nancy Hoover - One of my favorite Handmade Goods Artists! I bought up her spy owls for my wee ones and some great little decorations.

The Pink Petal Designs by Trudi Wilbur - SUCH cute garden art! I snatched up a Ting Bottle Bug!

Children's Art Showcase - 100% to Project Rescue! Kids CAN change the world! Both of my children sold their art in the show... thanks to Grandpa!

As artists continue to sell custom creations, we continue to fundraise for Project Rescue. It’s so amazing to use our talents to truly make a difference in the lives of those who need our help the most! I can’t wait for next year! I hope you’ll be able to join us!


Highland Church Arts & Crafts Show

| May 12, 2012

I’ve been SO busy getting ready for my first-ever Arts & Crafts Show! Not only am I one of 18 artists, but I’m coordinating the entire event with some very special people.
My new & forever friend (Roxanne) and I have been leading the “Arts & Crafts For Hope” small group every 1st and 3rd Thursday of each month, since February. At each meeting, we teach on and discuss the issue of human trafficking. We also provide helpful information to emerging artists to bring success beyond our hobbies. We’ve offered tips on using Facebook, Etsy, blogging, Twitter and other modern day ways that artists can sell their wares beyond a “brick and mortar” store. We’ve also given lots of helpful ideas that we can all use as we participate in this art show! This group has helped Roxanne and I plan the entire show. We’ve done so much: inviting talented artists, planning and promoting the show, setting up, and coming up with many creative ideas for fundraising.
It is our goal to raise $5,000 to donate to  Project Rescue, an amazing ministry to women and children found in sexual slavery. We’ve gotten children involved by asking them to donate their artwork -100% of each sale will help children victimized by human trafficking. Our artists are donating items for a silent auction and they have all agreed to give 10% of their sales to Project Rescue. We are excited to see emerging artists selling alongside seasoned artists… all to fight modern day slavery. Wow! I invite you to join us for this spectacular event. It truly is Art with Purpose.

Altered Story Handmade Goods

| March 19, 2012

This and other goodies available at

Flossy The Rabbit Mixed Media Magnet Decoration - available at

As a stay-at-home mama and busy pastor’s wife, my main focus goes to my family and church. However, I have a husband who is always encouraging me to pursue my dreams.
As my budding interest has turned into a real passion to fight modern day slavery, my husband has been my biggest encourager. And, he knows I’ve always enjoyed doing crafts… especially paper crafts. So, I’m excited to share that because of his nudging and inspiration, I’ve combined these two interests into something exciting!
In recent months, I’ve been pouring much energy into my new handmade goods business, Altered Story. By using my still-blooming talents, I’m able to make a difference in the world by spreading awareness about modern day slavery through my crafts. I alter vintage goodies and wonderful old books into new treasures. My hope is to help alter the stories of slaves around the world. I share with potential customers the reason behind what I do. And, I donate 10% of profits towards supporting anti-trafficking organizations that work to protect, rescue and restore.
I can attest to this: putting my attention and effort into helping slaves around the world by creating lovely things has given me such a GREAT appreciation for my blessed life. Surprise! This new adventure has been altering my own story for the better, too! And, I’m so thankful.

Moldova Report

| December 12, 2009

Moldovan Sunset
In November, Amy and I shared at our church about our trip to Moldova, Eastern Europe. We traveled there to learn about human trafficking and discover more about the worth of one person. One orphan. One victim of trafficking. And our own, individual worth, found in Jesus Christ. If you’d like to listen to our messages through podcast (Amy’s first, mind second) you can listen here: listen here.
I hope you will be inspired to take the next step in your own journey of faith. You are worth it.

God Of This City Video

| November 25, 2009

Here is a video from the band Bluetree, that shares the story of the song, “God Of This City.”

Beyond the Soiled Curtain

| November 25, 2009

beyond the soiled curtain image

This is the first book I will recommend to those who are interested in the issue of human trafficking. It shares about sex slavery in a way that is easily read and accepted. It has statistics and information, but readers won’t get lost in details because the authors share personal stories that keep your attention.
I read through the entire book in one sitting. It shares about the work of Project Rescue and the powerful hope we have in Jesus Christ. It inspires readers about what can be done through the working of the Holy Spirit through people like you and me.
I am thankful for those working with Project Rescue, right now. This is an annointed ministry fighting great battles. They are freeing women from the bondage of sex slavery and taking in the children of these workers, so all may live a better life. The Grants and others working in Project Rescue’s ministries around the world need us to team up with them. Through our prayers, our financial help and by sharing information, we can help them to make a difference. Thank God for Project Rescue!
Missionary David Livingstone is quoted in the book, “Sympathy is no substitute for action.” As a mom and pastor’s wife, I’m busy with the work God’s set right before me. I wish I could do more to combat trafficking. Maybe God will lead me to future works. But I’m reminded, from this book, that the greatest work I can do to combat human trafficking is to pray. I pray for spiritual and physical freedom for sex slaves around the world. I pray for those working with victims to be filled with the supernatural power of His Holy Spirit. I pray that He will fill me, so that I will be ready if He should ask me to move to the front lines. Prayer is something I CAN do. And, so can you.
A prayer from the book: “Dear Lord, please save the millions of women and girls who are being exploited in sexual slavery; and use my life and resources to save at least one.”

Maybe There’s Hope

| July 10, 2009

We will be stopping at La Strada Moldova, an NGO working to help trafficking victims.

La Strada Moldova is an NGO working to help trafficking victims.

I am leaving for Moldova in less than a week.
Today, I printed off and cut up home-made “bookmarks.”  Each one has trafficking hotline numbers listed for many European countries, in multiple languages. Part of our mission is to place these in airport bathrooms and on empty seats along our journey. We want to spread awareness about human trafficking to whoever may find them. More importantly, we pray that God would orchestrate the right person/people to discover what we leave behind.
Maybe one traveling girl will realize the danger that she’s in, herself. Many girls take jobs overseas only to arrive at their destination and discover they’ve been trafficked. Maybe seeing our list of trafficking hotlines will confirm the warning signs she’s been noticing along the way. Maybe she will be able to get out before it’s too late.
Maybe one young boy, already sold as a sex slave,  will find our bookmark and memorize the phone number so he can, some day, call for help. Maybe just seeing that number will give him hope. Young children are sold every day, all across the world.
There is a story behind every trafficking statistic. If you are interested in reading some, check out La Strada Ukraine’s website. Please pray for God to do miracles. Thank you.

God’s Power for ALL Moms

| July 3, 2009


The Talbotts provide life training for mothers in Wautoma at Naomi House. Find out how you can help them at

God’s been speaking to me about mercy.

When I think about victims of sex trafficking, I have the utmost mercy for them. I think about what they have faced. I understand that because of these horrors, it might be hard for them to be healthy moms to their children. They need healing in every respect.  The Home of Hope (changed to Freedom Home after my trip), in Moldova, is loving these women and training them to become better parents. I feel such faith that they will become who God intends for them to be, through His power.

When I think about some of the ladies in my own community, I get frustrated. I recently witnessed obvious neglect and abuse at a local park. It made me mad to see how these children were being treated. How could that mother fail to treat them with the love that every child deserves?

Then, at a prayer meeting, God convicted me as He connected these two thoughts. He showed me that these local women have histories that I can’t imagine. Maybe they’ve experienced abuse and neglect themselves. Maybe they just don’t know any better. But, doesn’t God have the power to change them, too? Why shouldn’t I have the same hope of restoration and health for them?

It just got me wondering if part of the purpose of my trip to Moldova might be to inspire me to help hurting moms in my own community. I’m open to whatever God has planned.