Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Overwhelmed? Liz Tolsman has good advice and talks about her book, Snow on the Tulips

A stranger’s life hangs in the balance. But to save him is to risk everything.

 Summary of Snow on the Tulips

The war is drawing to a close, but the Nazis still occupy part of the Netherlands. After the losses she’s endured, war widow Cornelia is only a shadow of the woman she once was. She fights now to protect her younger brother, Johan, who lives in hiding.

 When Johan brings Gerrit Laninga, a wounded Dutch Resistance member, to Cornelia’s doorstep, their lives are forever altered. Although scared of the consequences of harboring a wanted man, Cornelia’s faith won’t let her turn him out.

As she nurses Gerrit back to health, she is drawn to his fierce passion and ideals, and notices a shift within herself. Gerrit’s intensity challenges her, making her want to live fully, despite the fear that constrains her. When the opportunity to join him in the Resistance presents itself, Cornelia must summon every ounce of courage imaginable.

She is as terrified of loving Gerrit as she is of losing him. But as the winter landscape thaws, so too does her heart. Will she get a second chance at true love and learn to depend on the Perfect Love that drives out all fear? Or will her new love be snatched away before it has a chance to bloom?

What to Do When You Are Overwhelmed

The kids need to be picked up from school, last night’s dirty dishes are in the sink, you have no idea what’s for dinner tonight and your deadline is looming. In big, red letters on your jam-packed calendar.

 Calgon, take me away!

Wouldn’t that be nice? But it doesn’t happen in real life. So what’s a woman to do when life gets downright claustrophobic?

1. Make a list and prioritize. The few minutes it takes to do that might save you a bunch of time down the line. And don’t cram everything into one day. Spread your obligations over several days. And give yourself the satisfaction of crossing items off that list.

2. Along similar lines, take one thing at a time. My son would get overwhelmed with the amount of homework he had to do. My advice? Focus on one subject at a time. Finish that, enjoy your sense of accomplishment, and then move on. You’d be surprised how that pile of papers dwindles when you concentrate on the task at hand without looking at what remains to be done.

3. Ask for help. Oh, it’s hard. We’re supposed to be super-women, aren’t we? Remember that song (or am I dating myself?). “I’m a woman. W-O-M-A-N. I bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan...” Face it. And I know it’s hard. You can’t do everything. Your husband or kids might have to help.

4. Let go. Your house won’t be perfect. And it’s O.K. Kind of. I’ll admit, this is hard for me. I see the dirt and it bugs me until I clean it. And when I give in to #3, it’s next to impossible for me to not think that I could have done it better myself. But I don’t clean my bathrooms twice a week like I used to. And the dust on top of the refrigerator – who even sees it?

 5. As they say, last but not least: spend time with the Lord. Take a break and commune with God. He will give you rest for your soul. He will refresh you and lift you up on eagle’s wings. He will give you strength. Then everything will fall into perspective.
Meet the author
Liz Tolsma has lived in Wisconsin most of her life, and she now resides next to a farm field with her husband, their son, and their two daughters. All of their children have been adopted internationally and one has special needs. Her novella, Under His Wings, appeared in the New York Times bestselling collection, A Log Cabin Christmas. Her debut novel, Snow on the Tulips, released in August of 2013. When not busy putting words to paper, she enjoys reading, walking, working in her large perennial garden, kayaking, and camping with her family. Please visit her blog at and follow her on Facebook and Twitter (@LizTolsma). She is also a regular contributor to the Barn Door blog.