Saturday, August 4, 2012

I wrote a book!

I wrote a book!

Very rarely will I shout out my accomplishments; but in a blog it is not so much a shout but more of a sentence with emphasis. My absence on the blog has been felt dearly in my heart these past few months. The time usually spent on my weekly blog was ousted by the push to finalize my first book and get it into print. I do not regret the time spent on this push but I did dearly miss my blogging. Today, I happily introduce my new book and just as joyfully reconnect with my blog.

I Can't Sleep 

I wrote this book about 4 years ago, I wrote it all in one sitting during one night at my cottage in Arden Ontario when, you guessed it I could not sleep. Often when I Can't Sleep I will get up and journal, read scripture and pray. When I Can't Sleep it is usually due to the current anxieties of my day, real or otherwise, beginning to take over and filling my mind with thoughts and images that are far bigger than they really need to be.

My main character, laying wide awake in his darkened room.
The night I wrote this book my anxieties were really not that different than other time, it was a typical sleepless night.What was atypical was that after my time of journalling and praying I realized how out of control my anxieties had gotten. To quote many including my mother my brain had "created a mountain out of a mole hill" growing my restlessness into anxiety. Examining the Allie made mountain that night exposed the unnatural growth of my anxieties and brought them back to manageable size. The phrase "I Can't Sleep" repeated in my head as I made of list of my worries. The line; I can' t sleep because (fill in the blank)  monopolized the pages of my journal, some of them actually were quite humorous due to the exaggerated size of them.  I started laughing at my mind's ability to make my reality so absurd. As I laughed at myself, the idea for this book hit. I stayed up longer than I needed to to write it, but as dawn drew near I had in my hands the first draft of I Can't Sleep. 

A starfish nightlight, a favorite of mine
I loved the story from the start but as I worked with the amazing illustrator Jace McKinney and watched it visually take shape, I grew to love it even more. The little boy in the story is not just for kids, he represents all of us at one time or another  as we let our worries take up larger room in our head than they need to. I hope you enjoy this book and I would love feedback when you have time.

How to get this book
Canadian and US customers: can visit
and order your copy(s) for delivery. Be sure to indicate if you want your book signed or personalized!
Nassau residents: You can contact me at for a signed or personalized copy. Also, you can visit the following stores in Nassau who are currently carrying the book, more stores will be added shortly!

Exaggerated worries take different shapes
Bahama Art and Handicraft
Nassau Stationers

Book Synopsis
Follow the creative mind of a fourth grade boy as he struggles to fall asleep.  Friends and family have given him advice but it does not work. What ever will he do? How will he ever sleep with all of these worries? Will he ever get out of the fourth grade? Never fear! Mom and Dad hear their son’s struggle and come to save the night with an ingenious plan that helps their son find a sense of confidence as he learns to better handle his worries and troubles.
Included in this book is a letter to parents from the author, Allie MacPhail. As a Marriage and Family Therapist, Allie recognizes that our worries can sometimes get the better of us causing, among other things, sleepless nights. Creatively written, and beautifully illustrated, this entertaining book demonstrates one method parents can use to help their children have a good night sleep.
a few scenes from the book
also.. please follow my new blog at

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Just a reminder that Allie is writing on a new blog, undeniable!!
please consider following this new blog

Sunday, June 26, 2011


the new blog has begun!
 Undeniable was launched today, please consider following

also.. my amazing husband Bryn MacPhail (holla!)
has created a fab new professional website for me check it out!

love, allie!!!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Final blog post for Uprooted to Paradise.

This is my last blog for Uprooted to Paradise. Read on for an explanation.

Exactly one year ago, the MacPhails landed in the Bahamas as residents. Still exhausted from saying goodbye to so many people, we put our hearts and mind to setting down roots here in Nassau. When contemplating the big transition to Nassau, Bryn and I knew in order for ministry to be effective and for our family to thrive, we would need to establish roots in Nassau and be able to consider this place home. God has been so good to us, we indeed feel settled, we feel more than settled we feel rooted.

My roots did not arrive with my belongings on a cargo ship, nor did they happen when the school routine began with our daughter. Not even when I started my work here as a therapist did my roots show up. No, I am firm believer that on June 3rd 2010, when I landed here in Nassau as a resident that unbeknown to me, I had roots. I brought them with me.

This transition, this move, this big huge enormous change in my life called Nassau, has taught me something. Roots are not where you live, roots are not where you are from. Roots are those things that grow from within caused only by knowing to whom you belong. My roots are strong and firm, my roots nourish and support me during this crazy thing called life. God is the One to whom I belong, the One to whom I gain my strength, and He is the One who really really knows me. He shapes my roots, through the knowledge that more than anything in this world I belong to a God who adores me for who I am. So whether I be in Timbuktu, Zimbabwe, or Toronto I can claim my roots, this transition to Nassau is what taught me this truth.

Along this journey I have seen and felt God's grace and mercy in my life in ways I could never had predicted. Through this part of my life I have felt God's unrelenting hand of love, showing me over and over that I belong. Perhaps a better way to say this is that God himself, has taken root in my heart, I am rooted from within. Sometimes I try to tether myself to things, people or ideas but being rooted from within is a no fail solution to this uneasy world. A tether is a temporary solution that lasts as long as you can hold on and is dependent upon the strength of your rope. Finally, I get it, I am rooted,I always as have been, as long as I have known Christ I have been rooted from within.

So why is this the last blog? This blog has been so helpful in my understanding of this truth, and the processing of my thoughts and feelings throughout this transition. I might be letting go of Uprooted to Paradise but I will be beginning a new blog shortly. Stay tuned, I promise to let you all know of where my next blog appears and what it will be all about and thank you for all your kind words, thoughtful comments and prayers as I realized I am rooted in Paradise.
Shine on my friends and thank you for supporting myself through this blog.

Allie "firmly rooted wherever she goes" MacPhail

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Celebrating the Underdog

Yesterday my daughter and I volunteered at the Bahamas Humane Society Fun day. It was a day to help raise money to further the amazing work being done at the BHS, where hundreds of homeless, abused and unwanted animals are cared for and eventually re-homed to their "furever" home. There were food, games, and contests for all to enter. The contests were far from the traditional dog show events; there were awards for best kisser, waggiest tail, most/least obedient, most agile, most unusual looking, and best costume. There were ribbons handed out to the winners of the contests, worn with pride by the dogs and the proud owners.

The day which was primarily a fundraiser was really more about celebrating the underdogs of the dog world. The dogs there did not contain a pedigree or official papers stating their genetic greatness. No, the only claim of greatness was seen in the bond between dog and their owners, but what a claim. Papers were nowhere to be found but claims of love and friendship abounded in plenty. Most of the dogs yesterday were alive because they had been surrendered to the BHS, rescued off the streets or snatched from a death sentence at the pound by BAARK. These once underdog dogs were certainly the stars of the show as they were paraded through the fun day by the owners who loved them.

I too am an underdog, in fact I think most of us are if we think about it. There is a point in most people's lives that we question where we belong. We might have come from the best of families or the worst of families, our heritage matters not, what matters is that we truly know to whom we belong. Once we do, we no longer are forced to take cover under rotting porches instead we have shelter with a King. When we know where we belong, the terrifying fear of being hurt is replaced with the strong protection of our Creator. The dogs yesterday, were once underdogs but were claimed, sheltered, protected and loved. They wore their ribbons from the contests with pride and their owners beamed to be associated with such a dog. I too have a ribbon of belonging which I wear with pride, it is not seen with eyes as it is in my heart. I know I belong, I am protected, sheltered and best of all loved. I belong to the King. Yesterday, I was reminded of such truth.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Online Persona, who are you?.. thoughts from a guest blogger

Time to evaluate the accuracy of your online persona. My guest blogger today has made everyone just stop and think. What or who are you representing online? is it a true picture of you or a sanitized picture you prefer to let people see? This has me thinking! I am glad to say I do sanitize some of my thoughts for my own online persona, but I do trust that i am not appearing false. I put out what I hope is edifying to those on line, and I keep back what is only between myself and God.
What do you do online? how sanitized is your persona?
read here for the amazing blog that got the world thinking.

shine on my friends, sanitized or not.. just be who God made you

Monday, May 2, 2011

No Ma'am!!!!

It was barely more than a whisper, but the word spoken meant more than I could cry out. It was uttered in a room with much going on but when heard other noises were hushed. She leaned over to me in a greeting, with a huge smile. Hers was a face I had seen every week for a few months now. Yesterday there was a relaxed look to it, in previous weeks there had been reserve and caution. She tapped me on the shoulder to ensure I was listening and said it, she said my name. Allie.

Sounds silly doesn't it, to be so excited to hear my name, sounds almost self centered, but let me fill you in as to why that moment touched me so deeply.

Children down here in the Bahamas are taught to address their elders as ma'am or sir. There is no deviation, and it appears to be strictly enforced. For all my months here in Bahamas I have been addressed by bag boys, young teens in restaurants and kids in school as ma'am. I really cannot stand it, I know it is protocol but to me it is a barrier which gets in the way of furthering any hope of building a friendship with the child.

As I get to know the kids I have had the following conversation repeatedly.
Ma'am.. (insert question here)
Yes, but call me Allie
Yes Ma'am.. question continues as originally stated... nothing changes.

But yesterday at church, it finally happened.

She came looking for me as I had not had a chance to greet her before church started. She came with the biggest most "happy to see me" smile I have ever seen. "Allie".

She said Allie.
I heard, "I feel comfortable with you"
She said Allie
I heard, "I trust you"
She said Allie
I heard myself think, "a friendship has begun"
She said Allie
I felt God give evidence of why I am here

Shine on my friends, build patiently the friendships in which God has intended you to Shine.