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(in)courage, Bigmama, Bloom (in)courage, Everyday life, Jessica Turner, Selah

Random Goodness.

Hello everyone! {AKA, the few who stick around even though I’m the most unpredictable blogger on planet Earth. Thank you.}

I hope your Christmas and New Year’s season was beautiful and that wherever you are you are enjoying the “recovery” period. January is typically a slow month for writers and artists so Todd and I are loving being at home. He’s in the studio this week recording for a new Selah project (YAY!) and I’ve been trying to catch up on the odds and ends of life that remain from the insane Fall we had. There has been a lot of writing and planning for talks I have coming up next month, but a majority of the time I’ve had off has just been spent focused on the kiddos. We had gotten behind in schooling, so we’re playing “catch-up,” which will be the pattern that likely continues until they graduate. It has been something that has really stressed me out in the past but the Lord has given me a peace about it, reminding me that as long as I’m keeping my focus where it should be, the rest will fall into place.

When I say “fall into place,” what I mean is, “their hearts are stronger than their long division skills.”

Any homeschool tips or encouragement from those of you who are farther down the road is always appreciated. Please feel free to share in the comments section so everyone can see them-I get a lot of questions about homeschooling and know any thoughts you have are helpful!

I’ve really needed this time to breathe a little and let the Lord speak to me. There have been some significant developments that have come as a result of it-mostly just revelations about what I need to be doing better and where I need to simply accept the grace that the Lord is offering and be grateful instead of being a control freak. I’m praying He will continue to speak as I write-the book I’m working on is taking more out of me than I anticipated. I chose a topic I was interested in and committed to it before I fully realized that it was an area that God needed to do some work on in me. Oh, pruning…you’re as scary as you are beautiful.

And because I am taking major liberties on the “randomness” of this post (are we calling it that?), let me add a few things I am loving right this moment.

1. The fact that I have a desk at home now. If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen it…I love her so much it’s unhealthy.

2. I have become obsessed with Annie Sloan’s chalk paint. I’ve painted everything in my house that stood still long enough.

3. Speaking of paint, we finally got around to painting our Master Bedroom (we have been wanting to since we moved  in. A few years ago. Whoops.) I chose a gray color that I will heretofore refer to as “perfection.” As Todd and I sat in the middle of the room last night at 3 a.m. watching it dry, I told him I would like to paint my entire life this color. Oh, you want to know what color it was? I can’t remember….darn. HA! Just kidding. I spent enough time doing research to know that you need a community of friends before you choose the right gray. It’s called “Revere Pewter” by Benjamin Moore. I’ll try to instagram a photo of it if I ever get to making my bed.

4. The book “Sparkly Green Earrings” by Melanie Shankle (aka Bigmama). You really should consider ordering it. Actually you shouldn’t consider anything. Just click right here and make your day happier. I will give you your money back if you don’t love it and laugh/ tear up the entire way through.*

5. The fact that God really is faithful, and He really cares about the details. More on this soon, but it’s just been a joy to watch Him work in ways we could never orchestrate to show us that He’s involved and that He is trustworthy.

6. The music of “All Sons and Daughters.” Lately, my favorite song is “Reason to Sing,” but that changes every half hour.

7. Joining Jess for our 10th book(!!!) for our Bloom book club over at (in)courage. Here’s the announcement of the book we chose! We sure would love for you to join us, and know that even if it’s a topic you’re intimidated by, you are in good company. The best part is doing it together and learning from each other. In answer to your question, no. I don’t have any idea how my hair is 10 feet long. I sure do need an appointment to fix that, since it’s been about 6 months since I did (yikes).

Winter Bloom Book Club Introduction from Bloom (in)courage on Vimeo.


I think that’s all for today, but I’ll be back over soon to say hey. I have been trying to write a post for a few weeks about #5, but it’s been harder than I thought it would be, and I’m working through it. Hopefully I can be an encouragement to you all through it, but it’s been a rough road. No need to worry-all is well. Just processing some parts of my faith walk that I’ve been ignoring and now I feel like the wound is (finally) being stitched up a little.

Love to all of you in the meantime~


*=This statement is a lie, but don’t let that stop you from ordering.

(in)courage, Lisa Leonard

Lisa’s Show!

If you have read my blog for any length of time, you know how much I love Lisa Leonard.

On the (in)courage beach retreat last month, I got to spend some one on one time with her and I decided I loved her even more. She gave me some brilliant insights into some life stuff I’m dealing with, and her calm, balanced approach to life helped me breathe deeper. I think you’ll see what I mean when you watch this video.

A production company has approached their family about doing a reality show, and this is the trailer for it. As we watched, Todd said, “Okay. I totally get why you love her so much…she is amazing. They all are…”

Seriously, this show will be such a blessing, and I think there’s a message in it for all of us.

Treat yourself to a few minutes with Lisa and the Leonard family…and prepare to fall in love with the whole bunch 🙂



Come Hang Out with Us!!!!

I know I have mentioned this before, but I wanted to give one last appeal to those of you who live near Nashville. We are having our (in)RL meet up THIS SATURDAY from 5:00-8:00 p.m. Originally, I had a speaking engagement and thought I was going to have to miss it, but it got canceled and now I’m going to be able to attend. YAY!!!!! I am co-hosting with the fabulous Jessica Turner and the amazing Annie Downs, and you do not want to miss the fun. It isn’t too late to come!!! Just sign up here and we’ll see you there.

There are lots of prizes and giveaways thanks to Dayspring and my publisher B&H (you’ll NEVER guess what they are giving everyone who comes…hmmm…could it be….books?!?!?)

We know there are quite a few more people coming than are registered on this page, so if you are planning on it, could you kindly sign up so we have an official headcount? We want to make sure we have plenty of stuff to spoil you with 🙂 Invite your friends, your neighbors, whoever! The more the merrier 🙂 Just let us know how many you are bringing and then come enjoy the fun.

In addition to snacking, laughing, and giving out loot, we are going to be watching some amazing videos from (in)courage, and you will not want to miss what God has been up to over there. You can click over to see more info on this first-time event, but the gist is it is going to be an amazing night and I really hope you can come!!! These are happening all over the place, so make sure and look up your city here if you want to be a part of it:)

Can’t wait!!!

Love to all,


(in)courage, Uncategorized


Thank you, Angela, for passing the invisible blog-tour baton!

This past year has shaped my idea of community more than any other.

I don’t really even know how to put it into words, but I was lacking something and I didn’t realize it until I got a taste. I have lots of friends, and lots of good friends. But I don’t know that I would have said I really had a community. For me, community means we are acting as a unit, and that means the good and the not-so-good. It means a friend who buys you a reamer and puts it in your mailbox.

By the way, a reamer is a wooden tool that helps you get juice out of a lemon. And apparently people have heard of this tool. I was not in that category. But thanks to Jenny Acuff, I am the proud owner of a reamer. I love it.

 And I didn’t realize I wanted it.

Heather Whittaker loves me deep and wide. She packs her car up at a moment’s notice for adventures. Even when I don’t tell her where we’re going. And then we laugh our heads off and don’t remember exactly how her cell phone ended up in coke.

 And I didn’t realize I wasn’t laughing enough.

Jessica sends cards. For every holiday celebrated in the modern world. And when I mention casually in a five minute conversation that my heart is heavy over something, she remembers. Really remembers. Calls me to check in. Calls me again and again because she knows (and now Heather and Jenny know. Darn. Secret’s out:)) that I don’t answer my phone when I check out mentally. But I need to.

 I didn’t realize I needed to answer.

I have a Bible study every Wednesday morning, and I love these girls more than I can say. They all have stories. We all cry and laugh and talk and pray and when our car doors close and we drive away, I’m praying for them. I’m thanking God for them. I’m joyful because I’m not alone.

I guess I didn’t realize I was alone.

But I was.

And I don’t ever want to be alone again.

I want to be known. To be loved and appreciated. To be gifted that which I didn’t know I wanted, to be laughing out loud from the deep part of me that hides, to be challenged to do the thing I think makes me weak. And to be in community.

It’s simple, but it’s life-giving. Life-altering. And the most beautiful gift from a Father who longs for sisters to close car doors and drive away loving each other.

Here’s the great news. You don’t need a car, a Bible study group, or any of the other things mentioned here to be a part of community. I am so, so overjoyed to share this video clip with you in the hopes that you will want to join us for a special experience. It’s called (in)RL, and it is brought to you courtesy of some of my favorite community-lovers…the folks at (in)courage. Will you take a few minutes and see if this is something the Lord would use to bless you in your walk?


Great, isn’t it???

So now for the details.

Click here for the registration page.

And here for the meetup page.

And here for answers to any questions you might have.

And now it’s my turn to pass the baton. Check in over here tomorrow to hear some more about (in)RL from our friend Heather Genman Wilson. Can’t wait to see you all there!!!!

See you at the beach house!!!!