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A Conversation with Katelyn James

I started following Katelyn a few years ago, and it is easy to tell that she is just the sweetest person. She is an amazing wedding photographer, and also shares great business advice, and lots of other fun things like her gorgeous home, and adorable puppy on her blog. Enjoy getting to know her a bit, and make sure to follow along with her at the links below…she will add some prettiness and inspiration to your feed for sure.
Bio and Portfolio-2015 Headshots-0014Tell us a little about yourself?

My name is Katelyn and I’m married to my high school sweetheart on 10-10-10!! We don’t have any children quite yet but we do have a fluffy little bichpoo named Bokeh and he brings so much joy to our life! I LOVE decorating and home design in general! Michael and I are a husband and wife team and we shoot 25-35 weddings annually. We also LOVE educating photographers and helping others make their dream job a reality! We offer workshops, coaching and have an online storewith digital resources!
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What does a typical day look like for you?

Well I wish that I could say that I have a perfect morning routine that included an hour with Jesus, an hour working out, showering and then starting my work day. Well, that is sadly not the case. Our schedule varies so much week to week. When I do get to wake up and have time have some time in the morning room with my journal, devotional and an omelette, I’m happy! :) Once I start the work day I work on things that people are WAITING on first and then I attempt to work ons special projects!
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What helps you stay organized?

I LOVE Evernote! I’m constantly figuring out new ways to use it to collect my ideas, thoughts and to-do lists. It’s working for now! I also have a “Shoots in Progress” worksheet that I use to keep my current work organized! You can actually download it for FREE by signing up for our newsletter! :
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I am a huge fan of your home decor posts, what inspires your decorating style, and where are your favorite places to shop for your home?

Oohh I love this question!! I don’t have a massive home decor budget and so Target and Homegoods are my go-to places for new decor! I love seeing ideas on home decor blogs and then trying to recreate them on a smaller budget. I also love Joss and Main and One Kings Lane! You can follow our new home series HERE! “A Home Made for Hosting” is all about helping people decorate and create spaces that they love to host in!!
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You and Michael work together full time which is amazing! What is your biggest advice to someone wanting to work with their spouse, how do you make it work?

Whew! Zach and Jody Gray once told us that it would take 3-4 years to really get your systems down and that’s so true! Michael and I have been working together for two and a half years and we’re still figuring out what works well for me and what works well for him. My systems aren’t his systems and we realized this very early on! Taking time to talk through what is and isn’t working is so important!
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What is the biggest thing God has been teaching you this year?

To TRUST him and to have more margin in our life. We are shooting less weddings this year and it’s the first time in 7 years that we have intentionally taken a step back. He’s showing us that He’s in charge and He knows what we need. So we’re learning to trust this year!

What are your must have products?

Hmm, in my personal life, I love my VERB hair products and in my business life, I love my ONA BAG!!!
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My Recommended Reading List

I often get asked for book recommendations, and I love sharing what I am currently reading. Here are some books that I have loved, and think that you might too. You can click on any of the images to learn more about each book.



I would love to hear what books you love, and think that I should add to my list!

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Kinzie Marie Harvell

I read Kisses from Katie in one sitting, no joke :). I also loved Jen Hatmakers newest Interrupted.. Super challenging and I’m still digesting it 2 months later! Love to my sweet friends!

Debbie Maminski-Nahrebecki

Keep it Shut (Karen Ehman)
Redeeming Love (Francine Rivers)
Healing Oils of the Bible (David Stewart, Ph.D.)
The Shack (Wm. Paul Young)
My Bible, preferences NKJV & NIV
What Love Is (Kelly Minter)

Jamie Gregory

I’m currently reading “The Gathering Place: Creating a Culture of Titus 2 Discipleship” & its great! You can order it here:

LOVE Angie Smith… all her books!


Thanks for the recommendations!

I started “Keep It Shut” by Karen Ehman last Thursday and I am almost done. I tend to talk a lot and interrupt people during conversation. Last week, God made it abundantly clear that I need to learn how to speak less and listen more. I’ve made tons of notes and it’s really convicting me. She covers learning to listen, how to talk to God before your talk to others, gossip, etc. The chapter on gossip is definitely convicting me in ways I never thought possible.
Highly, highly recommend it!

Also reading “Boundaries” by Dr.Henry Cloud.

Happy reading!

Nicky Peterson

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers!!

Dominique Gardner

The 5 Love Languages & God’s Not Mad at You by Joyce Meyer

A Conversation with Christine Hoover

Tell us a little about yourself.

I am married to Kyle, who is the pastor of a church we started almost seven years ago in our living room in Charlottesville, VA. We have three boys, who are 11, 9 ,and 7. When I’m not pastor’s wife-ing, I’m reading or writing. I blog, write articles for online sites such as Desiring God and Send Network, and I have the wonderful privilege of authoring books.

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What does a typical day look like for you?

I slice my days according to my differing priorities. Every morning before my kids get up, I can be found on my couch with my coffee and my Bible. Then the whirlwind happens where I find shoes, make breakfast and lunches, and remind my kids to brush their teeth before sending them off to school. My best hours for ideas and words are from 8-11 am, so as soon as they’re gone, I sit down to write. I typically meet up with women for counseling, discipleship, or friendship after lunch. The afternoon and evenings are for family (homework, cooking dinner, eating around the table) and, on some nights, ministry opportunities. No matter what, though, my days always end with a good book.


You have a brand new book! Can you tell us a little about it, and why you wanted to write about this topic?

This book, called From Good to Grace: Letting Go of the Goodness Gospel, was written on my heart through many years of wrestling with spiritual perfectionism. For so long I attempted to be good for God—which is what I term the “goodness gospel”—but then He taught me about His grace and that changed everything. I want other women to experience that same freedom and joy, the abundant life Jesus promised us yet so eludes so many of us because we live according to the goodness gospel.

The premise of the book, after debunking the goodness gospel of course, is that the Christian life is received from start to finish. Just as we receive our salvation by faith, we grow and are sanctified by faith, not through self-effort. We receive God’s love and grace and it compels us to respond.

From Good to Grace cover

What helps you stay organized?

Every Sunday, I map out a general plan for the week so I can assess what I need from the grocery store, what specific needs my kids have, what deadlines I need to meet, and when I’m scheduled to meet with women. I make notes to myself on Google tasks and sometimes even designate what days I will get to that specific task. Most importantly, I keep an open document on my computer to capture random ideas for blog posts and articles, because I tend to have them at inopportune times.

In regard to physical organization, I have certain days that I do routine tasks each week, such as menu planning, grocery shopping, and laundry. I probably need to add cleaning to that list! In order to write, which is my work, some things just don’t get done as much as they used to, and I try not to worry about this too much.


You have an amazing blog, and have written a lot for church planting wives. What is your biggest piece of advice for women that are just starting the journey of church planting with their husbands?

Learn God’s character and what He takes responsibility for. In my book,The Church Planting Wife,
I elaborate on this, but the most important thing to know about God is that He is the grower. In 1 Corinthians 3:6-7, Paul uses “planting” terminology to describe God’s actions: “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase.” As a church planting wife, you will most certainly plant and water, but only God can give the increase. Only God can change a heart, save a soul, produce spiritual fruit, and induce repentance. This really takes the pressure off and allows us to focus on what we are responsible for: faithful obedience.



What is the biggest things God has been teaching you this year?

God has been digging around in my heart and asking me to name my greatest insecurities. I’ve discovered that my greatest insecurity or fear is that once people get to know me that they will find me deeply disappointing. This insecurity can at times cause me to put a protective barrier around myself and keep me from loving people well. God has asked me to name it so that He can free me from it. He’s done that through Psalm 5:11-12, where the psalmist says that God defends those who trust in Him. God has been chipping away at my wall and asking me to come stand behind His protection instead. His protection allows me to freely love without worrying about how anyone perceives me, because I’m already loved by Him.

What are your daily must have products?

Coffee and a good book. That about sums it up.

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Looking forward to grabbing this book. I have learned so much about grace this year. Sometimes in my head, I repeat grace abounds. It always abounds. Thanks for telling your story Christine. Kristin – thanks for sharing!

Kristin’s Book Club | From Good To Grace

I had so much fun reading all of your posts and insights from our February book club book Women of the Word. I am so excited to announce that the book we will be reading in March is Christine Hoover’s brand new book From Good to Grace!

Christine and her publisher sent me an early copy of From Good to Grace, and just a few pages in, I knew it would be the perfect book for our March book club! The official release date is March 3, but you can already find it on Amazon!

I think the message of this book is so important! It is all about resting in God’s grace instead of trying to live life in our own strength. This book is soaked in the gospel and all about living a life of grace. I think the message is one that we so desperately need to hear. It is a reminder that it is all about what He has done, and not about how good we can be! This is a book about living a life where we serve God out of joy and not just duty. The book even includes a discussion guide in the back that will give us some great questions to talk about as we chat here and over on instagram.


The book club will be super easy, we will use the hashtag #kristinsbookclub on instagram which will help us find each other and see what others are thinking about what they are reading. I will also do a recap and review post at the end of the month about the book.

I am so excited to be reading this book with you girls, and I am also excited to be featuring Christine here on the blog very soon! Grab your copy of the book here, and let me know that you will be joining us!

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Samantha Phillips

looking forward to the book club

Rebeca Kline

I just orderes my book! Yay! Totally excited about this.

Kelsey Riley

I will be joining!

I’ve never participated in one of your book clubs before but I have observed from a distance (: I read the first few preview pages of the book on Amazon and I have a feeling I will be ordering the kindle version this evening! Those first few pages were so relatable! I am not yet a mother, but as a self-employed, work from home wife that is living out of the country while my husband is in medical school…I can totally relate to feeling like what I’m doing isn’t adding up to much. Looking forward to the insight this book can give (:


Looking forward to joining everyone in the March book club!!

Kelly A. Kantola

My book came yesterday :)

I am beyond excited. As a young pastor’s wife, I feel like this will be a great read for me! Looking forward to everyone’s insights on Instagram (I’m @chrissydj).

Nicole Hoffman Clark

Should get the book tommorrow

Kristen Grace

Im ordering tomorrow!

Shannon Oros

Getting my book in the mail this week! :-)