Not A Blueprint: It's The Shoes That Matter

A Journey Through Toxic Relationships

Non-Fiction - Relationships
190 Pages
Reviewed on 09/23/2016
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Author, Nina Norstrom is a member of AuthorsDen, The Book Reviewer's Club, Bublish, Bookgrabb, Goodreads, Womanessity, and Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA), among others.

Norstrom never had any desire to be a Writer (or write books for that matter). Her profession was Customer Service guru, not Authorship (or Writer). Yet, she says, "Publishing my storybook has been both rewarding and humbling experiences." Norstrom's book is crafted on actual events which make her storylines embraceable and relatable.

Norstrom is a native of Illinois, where she grew up in a small suburban town outside of Chicago. As a proud graduate of Concordia University, she received a bachelor's degree and holds Magna Cum laude status.

So who is Nina Norstrom, the author, the writer, the volunteer?

Personable, compassionate, and direct . . .
She is a passionate champion for many noteworthy causes, including those battling toxic relationships. When not reading or writing, she can be found mountain climbing, taking long walks in a park or alongside a beach, sitting at an entertainer’s concert, supporting an author at their book event, somewhere traveling, and even jumping in to exert her energy by doing volunteer work, at a variety of venues.

The story, "Not a Blueprint: It's the Shoe Prints that Matter, A Journey Through Toxic Relationships," is a representation of her growth and signifies a milestone in her recovery from toxic relationships, to the transition of non-toxicity

    Book Review

Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite

Not A Blueprint: It's The Shoes That Matter - A Journey Through Toxic Relationships by Nina Norstrom is an insightful read on toxic relationships - relationships we share with people, alcohol, animals, diseases, drugs, religion, environment, and our own emotions. These relationships can destroy us on all levels - physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual - yet at the same time can be a learning experience and will help in one growing to be a better human being. Toxicity follows us on every path and we can easily distinguish between a toxic and a nontoxic relationship. As readers take the journey with the author, they realize that honesty, compassion, strength, and courage are the main requirements for anyone to entertain healthy relationships in their lives.

The book is motivational and uplifting and will channel the minds of readers towards positive thinking. The author's story, her experiences, the obstacles she faced, her strength, and courage will inspire readers to become bold and handle their lives with confidence. The book also helps readers understand that we all have to walk our own paths, we all have our personal journeys, and we all have the strength to overcome toxicity if we look at it with the right attitude and perspective. The author's words are honest and reassuring and will teach everyone to be grateful for the people who are helpful and supportive in their lives. The author's narration focuses on her strengths rather than her pains and setbacks, which makes the book a thought-provoking and encouraging read.

Nina Norstrom, Authors

I thank you for your review(s). And hope you've gained an educational viewpoint from it's reading.

As we know, life is so full of challenges . . . the good, the bad, and the ugly. We can not live without taking a journey. There are many paths along the way that one must travel through this walk of life. Oftentimes, unless we've actually stepped into one's shoe prints it may be difficult to embrace their journey.

Through it all, just realize there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. And when we can follow that light to find our way out, that speaks to volume!

https://www.amazon.com/Not-Blueprint-Matter---Journey-Relationships/dp/1939371473/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1475446995&sr=8-1&keywords=Not+a+Blueprint+It%27s+the+Shoe+Prints+that+Matter

Nina Norstrom, Authors

I thank you for your review(s). And hope you've gained an educational viewpoint from it's reading.

As we know, life is so full of challenges . . . the good, the bad, and the ugly. We can not live without taking a journey. There are many paths along the way that one must travel through this walk of life. Oftentimes, unless we've actually stepped into one's shoe prints it may be difficult to embrace their journey.

Through it all, just realize there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. And when we can follow that light to find our way out, that speaks to volume!

https://www.amazon.com/Not-Blueprint-Matter---Journey-Relationships/dp/1939371473/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1475446995&sr=8-1&keywords=Not+a+Blueprint+It%27s+the+Shoe+Prints+that+Matter

D. Donovan Senior Reviewe

Not a Blueprint: It's the Shoe Prints that Matter, A Journey Through Toxic Relationships achieves what few other books offer, surveying the elements of toxic relationships and people in life which define'toxic' actions and tells how to handle them. Now, that it does this with acknowledgment to the hand of God and a not to the idea that "... that God gives us strong shoes to walk those paths." Makes for a discussion particularly recommended for spiritual self-help readers.

The author knows her subject: toxic relationships at home, at work, and in life nearly destroyed her. She learned from these relationships: "My ultimate lesson in my journey has been that healthy relationships require honesty, compassion, strength, and courage. Given the right mechanisms, these traits make maneuvering through life less stormy."

Her life story unfolds in these pages, from a religious upbringing and the importance of God in her life to her job, family, and friendships. Christian guilt, shame, sin, emotional attachments, and parenting are explored with insights into toxic communications, individuals, and - yes - attractions to and between toxic personalities.

Not a Blueprint thus serves a dual purpose, providing Nina Norstrom's autobiography and charting her life's course through toxicity and onto a more positive, supportive path. What's the difference between a 'blueprint' that guides one and the 'shoe print' mentioned in the title? Quite simply, this is a focus on the lasting effects ("shoe prints") which lessons learned from experience leaves on one's psyche and life. The author is quite clear about the difference and God's role in this: ". . . my belief is that God gives us strong shoes to walk those paths. If we are willing, we can readily learn to distinguish whether relationships are toxic or nontoxic."

Followers of her footsteps should ideally be spiritually-minded readers who will appreciate that incorporation of God's purposes into discussions of the characteristics that constitute toxic relationships and how to handle or avoid them. Readers with such a background will appreciate the consistent injections of faith into life experiences (a regular thread in the stories), and will appreciate the life lessons Norstrom shares along the way which serve to support that faith: "So, when a person comes into your life, don't question their existence - just embrace the presence. Take it from the Holy Father: they are there for a reason, and we must embrace that moment."

Each lesson provides enlightenment, making for an appealing combination of psychological and spiritual inspection recommended for self-help and Christian readers alike.

D. Donovan Senior Reviewe

Not a Blueprint: It's the Shoe Prints that Matter, A Journey Through Toxic Relationships achieves what few other books offer, surveying the elements of toxic relationships and people in life which define'toxic' actions and tells how to handle them. Now, that it does this with acknowledgment to the hand of God and a not to the idea that "... that God gives us strong shoes to walk those paths." Makes for a discussion particularly recommended for spiritual self-help readers.

The author knows her subject: toxic relationships at home, at work, and in life nearly destroyed her. She learned from these relationships: "My ultimate lesson in my journey has been that healthy relationships require honesty, compassion, strength, and courage. Given the right mechanisms, these traits make maneuvering through life less stormy."

Her life story unfolds in these pages, from a religious upbringing and the importance of God in her life to her job, family, and friendships. Christian guilt, shame, sin, emotional attachments, and parenting are explored with insights into toxic communications, individuals, and - yes - attractions to and between toxic personalities.

Not a Blueprint thus serves a dual purpose, providing Nina Norstrom's autobiography and charting her life's course through toxicity and onto a more positive, supportive path. What's the difference between a 'blueprint' that guides one and the 'shoe print' mentioned in the title? Quite simply, this is a focus on the lasting effects ("shoe prints") which lessons learned from experience leaves on one's psyche and life. The author is quite clear about the difference and God's role in this: ". . . my belief is that God gives us strong shoes to walk those paths. If we are willing, we can readily learn to distinguish whether relationships are toxic or nontoxic."

Followers of her footsteps should ideally be spiritually-minded readers who will appreciate that incorporation of God's purposes into discussions of the characteristics that constitute toxic relationships and how to handle or avoid them. Readers with such a background will appreciate the consistent injections of faith into life experiences (a regular thread in the stories), and will appreciate the life lessons Norstrom shares along the way which serve to support that faith: "So, when a person comes into your life, don't question their existence - just embrace the presence. Take it from the Holy Father: they are there for a reason, and we must embrace that moment."

Each lesson provides enlightenment, making for an appealing combination of psychological and spiritual inspection recommended for self-help and Christian readers alike.

EllietG

I gladly followed Nina Norstrom’s shoe prints to find out how one copes with the most adverse and often toxic situations in life.
The first thing that struck me was the voice of the narrator, strong, yet gentle, humble at times. There is great skill in conjuring up the images and sounds of a family living in a little house in a small, suburban village south of Chicago. I could see the mom, the dad, the siblings. I could hear their voices, even.
And so the narrator draws you into the life of a young woman who survives the struggles of life, by hook and by crook, using her wits, her smarts, her tenacity, and certainly her faith.
I have to admit, there were times when I thought the toxic struggles were too much to bear, and yet, there she was, coming through the darkest battles of them all, stronger, wiser, and willing to impart her wisdom and give hope to the most despondent among us.
Thank you for writing this story that had to be told. It will bring clarity and peace of mind to many!

Priscilla Whitake

Nina shares her whole heart and doesn't hold anything back. This book will give you better insight into the cancer journey. Nina gives helpful tips at the end of each chapter that can come in handy in any relationship.

Vanessa Fortenberry

I laughed and I cried, as I read the pages of “Not a Blue Print: It’s the Shoe Prints that Matter.” Nina Norstrom, the author, penned this creative nonfiction as if it were a drama from a popular novel. Nina’s life story weaved engaging characters in and out; some loveable and some unlikable (but, that’s real life, isn’t it?) as if it were yesterday that the events unfolded in her life. Nina painted a vivid picture of her life’s toxic journey. In addition, the “Insight” following each chapter provided life lessons that I, without a doubt, related to. By all means, you will want to pick-up this book, which I found difficult to put down some nights. You’ll be compelled to read this fast-paced page turner until you have read the last sentence!

Vanessa Fortenberry

I laughed and I cried, as I read the pages of “Not a Blue Print: It’s the Shoe Prints that Matter.” Nina Norstrom, the author, penned this creative nonfiction as if it were a drama from a popular novel. Nina’s life story weaved engaging characters in and out; some loveable and some unlikable (but, that’s real life, isn’t it?) as if it were yesterday that the events unfolded in her life. Nina painted a vivid picture of her life’s toxic journey. In addition, the “Insight” following each chapter provided life lessons that I, without a doubt, related to. By all means, you will want to pick-up this book, which I found difficult to put down some nights. You’ll be compelled to read this fast-paced page turner until you have read the last sentence!

Angela M. Dokos

What a journey! I have cried my eyes out. I can't imagine overcoming some of the obstacles she faced. I'm afraid I could never be as strong as she is. I can only hope that I could forgive as she did. I am thankful for therapy and support groups that helped her get to where she's at today. I am most thankful for God helping her even when it didn't seem like it. This book is very touching. I'm glad she shared her
Journey with us through this book. We can all learn so much from this.

Angela M. Dokos

What a journey! I have cried my eyes out. I can't imagine overcoming some of the obstacles she faced. I'm afraid I could never be as strong as she is. I can only hope that I could forgive as she did. I am thankful for therapy and support groups that helped her get to where she's at today. I am most thankful for God helping her even when it didn't seem like it. This book is very touching. I'm glad she shared her
Journey with us through this book. We can all learn so much from this.

Scarlett Oblenis

This book is great as it captures the essence of a mother's love for her child. Nina was a great mother and (during the worst of times)her love for her child prevailed. This book shows how we are all vulnerable to tragedy but with God's mercy and strength, we can pull through. Nina's writing is candid and raw with a glimmer of optimism. The read is well worth every minute.

Eleanor A. Peterson

A memoir of a mother’s love for her child.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review. An incredible story of a mother’s love for her daughter that tries in every way possible to give her daughter the best that life can offer. I had a lump in my throat as I turned the pages. I was with her every step of the way, feeling her pain and disappointment in life as she desperately fights the toxic disease. This roller coaster ride will open your eyes and may one day save you from a toxic relationship.