More about me

Our mold story, “all in one place”  🙂 is here: http://paradigmchange.me/lc/upton/

An interview I did on another mold website is here: http://www.moldsensitized.com/killing-mold-is-dangerous/

I live with my family in the lovely Black Hills of South Dakota.

I grew up south of St. Louis, in the lush Missouri countryside.  My parents surrounded me with love, beauty, and Scripture—the Word of God.  My sister, brother, our friends, and I played in the creek, explored the woods, and made up our own mysteries (or played tricks on each other!)  I loved playing piano—especially piano/violin duets with Dad, reading with Mom and Cathy, learning ballet, and riding Mom’s horse.

In 1988, I met Steve at Taylor University.  We were both music majors; he was two years ahead of me.  Wouldn’t you know it—I had lots of questions about music theory, and I knew Steve had to be just the guy to ask for help.  🙂  (The secret is, before Steve even met me, Steve’s academic adviser told Steve he should ask me out.  Good call, Dr. H!  :))

Steve graduated from Taylor in 1991 with a Bachelor of Music in Education, and I graduated in 1992 with a Bachelor of Arts in Music and a Piano Pedagogy Certificate.  We were married in June 1992.

We were blessed with the births of Nathan in 1997, Alyssa in 2001, and Sarah in 2005.

During this time, Steve earned 34 hours toward a Masters of Theological Studies in Worship and Liturgy at Tyndale College and Seminary.

In 2008/09, I became very ill.  Over a year later, we found out that the main cause was hidden mold in our home.  By then, I had suffered Toxic Injury from the mold and acquired full-blown, disabling Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS). It changed all of our lives dramatically.

But, being too sick to get out of bed prompted me to pursue another passion–writing!  It started with a story I had begun writing in Jr. High, an old laptop, and a black typewriter stand….  (Thank you, G.K.!!!)  And Mom and Dad, aren’t you glad you finally know who the Library Thief is?  🙂

I also enjoy editing/proofreading for several other writers.

We have homeschooled our children since Nathan was in Kindergarten.  At the time, Steve worked full-time at a church, so he worked long Sundays and frequently worked Saturdays preparing for Sundays.  We wanted more family time than that would allow, so homeschooling made sense.  (We took Fridays off and did school on Saturday.)    

Lo and behold, I found I absolutely loved homeschooling!  Seeing that look on my own children’s faces of, “Oh, NOW I get it!” is just priceless.  Homeschooling is flexible and fun, and figuring out ways to teach is a creative outlet.

In January 2010, Steve quit his job because he needed to take care of me and Sarah.  Sarah has spina bifida (myelomeningocele), hydrocephalus, neurogenic bladder, hypotonia, NV Learning Disorder, Chiari II Malformation, scoliosis, and seizure disorder.  She likes to army crawl, and she uses her little, pink wheelchair when out doing errands with Daddy.

She has had 12 surgeries so far and innumerable seizures; seizure medications have been tricky in her case, but she is relatively stable now–praise God!!!  She sees 6 specialists in Rapid City and 2 in Sioux Falls, and we are grateful for every one of them!!  She wins the hearts of nurses, doctors, & other staff with her outgoing, happy personality.

Steve plays piano sometimes at our church (Southern Hills Evangelical Free Church, in Hot Springs, South Dakota) and takes care of Sarah’s and my many, many needs.  He is also a fantastic cook and super editor.

Nathan enjoys music, Legos, baseball, technology, and reading.  Alyssa likes reading, drawing, horses, Legos, and piano.  Sarah likes people, music, Legos, helping cook, and having someone read to her.

Writing projects:

  1. Let’s Explore the Black Hills (click and scroll down)
  2. December 1944, Budapest, Hungary (short story)   (free on this blog)
  3. The Library Thief   The Library Thief sneak peek
  4. The Disappearing Snacks
  5. The Silly Sheep and four more in the mystery series   planning
  6. The Cat Race
  7. The Plate (funny picture book)  illustrating
  8. 8 more fun picture books  planning
  9. Building a House for Multiple Chemical Sensitivity:  a Mold-Resistant, Low-Tox Home
  10. Building a House for Multiple Chemical Sensitivity: a Mold Resistant, Low-Tox Home, print version
  11. God’s Special Children–Spina Bifida (picture book)  looking for illustrator or publisher
  12. God’s Special Children–Surgery (picture book)    looking for illustrator or publisher
  13. Autumn Day (picture book about a day in the life of a homeschooling family)  looking for illustrator or publisher
  14. Winter Day (picture book sequel to Autumn Day looking for illustrator or publisher
  15. Spring Day (3rd picture book in the series)  looking for illustrator or publisher
  16. Summer Day (4th picture book in the series)  planning
  17. Writing project for someone  done and awaiting publication
  18. MCS:  Banished from the Human Race (non-fiction)  writing/editing
  19. Special Needs, Grief, & Children (non-fiction)  planning
  20. The Plan (working title; fiction novel for adults)  planning and slowly writing

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4 Responses to More about me

  1. Heidi says:

    Hi there! I’ve enjoyed looking through your website (and look forward to reading the ebook that I bought ;)). I also am a homeschooling mom with MCS and who knows what else. My kids suffer from it also. Here’s our blogsite: http://www.dunebythesea.com. Love the internet – reading the stories of others helps us feel much more connected, even it is is a connection to an essentially invisible group 😉

    • Christa Upton says:

      Hi, Heidi! Thank you! I am looking forward to checking out your website. YES–I, too, LOVE the internet and feeling more connected!! 🙂

  2. Martine Byers says:

    Hello my precious Christa! I know that God has led me to you! Can hardly believe this is happening. I don’t think a day has passed when you are not in my mind and my prayers. You still look as pretty as you always did, the face of an angel. How the children have grown! Please try to communicate with me as soon as possible. I miss you and lo9ve you so much. Martine

    • Christa Upton says:

      Thank you, sweet friend; you are too kind! 🙂 My MCS is brutal–I am having great difficulty being online (nausea, etc.), but I can email offline and have Steve send the emails later. So, I would love for you to email me at steveandchrista@yahoo.com, and we can “chat” that way! 🙂

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