Sunday, May 10, 2020

Mother's Day 2020


We kept Mother's Day pretty low keyed here on #LifeOntheGravellyRoad My crew made me breakfast and spoiled me with homemade cards and a thoughtful gift. I haven’t had to cook or do dishes all day. But the one thing I asked we do no matter what was take a picture together, as we try to do each year.  Each kiddo is growing and changing so fast so I remember the wonderfulness and challenges and memories of being their mom right now.


 Wishing a Happy Mothers Day to all mothers, grandmothers, aunts and those special women who bless others by stepping into a mothering role for precious kiddos.

Taking time to treasure our family time, the blessing of being their mom, and life on the gravelly road.


Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Book Review: Made to Move Mountains by Kristen Welch


Kristen Welch's new book "Made to Move Mountains: How God Uses Our Dreams an Disasters to Accomplish the Impossible" challenges, encourages, and guides readers to really consider the impact and purpose of mountains in their life that they face (either by choice/dream or un-chosen challenges that surprise).

Throughout the book she authentically walks readers through personal stories of mountains of all types that author Kristen and her family have faced. She also delves into scripture and includes stories of faith to help readers consider how God uses mountains in faith journeys to shape/grow faith and often impact others for the kingdom, whether the mountain is one chosen by stepping out of ones comfort zone (like chasing a God-given dream) or a mountain that is un-chosen, surprising or knocking one down (like a disaster). She authentically shares the hard faith lessons she has learned on her own faith journey as well as her families ministry through Mercy House Global, encouraging readers to step out in their own faith and grow, even when staying stationary at the bottom of mountain might seem like a "safer" choice.



Larger themes covered in the book include identifying life's mountains, climbing instead of running/ignoring, the impact of climbing life's mountains with Jesus by your side, grieving the mountains you face (especially those unexpected/blindsiding ones), noticing the small mercies along the way (seeing God at work), taking the next step from where you are, and so much more. Each chapter includes questions to contemplate and apply to your own life as well as a journal page to keep notes, helping this to be more than just a book that you read but a faith journey you take yourself.

I have enjoyed other books by Kristen Welch and this one does not disappoint. This book has the potential to encourage and build up readers in many walks of life, leading them closer in to the God, making enduring mountains and even moving mountains possible.


*I was given an early release copy of this book as part of the launch team. My review and my words are my own.

Friday, January 24, 2020

Five Minute Friday: Relief


It has been a very long time since I've written a post for Five Minute Fridays ( encouraging bloggers to write on a prompt unedited for five minutes) but I've missed it so here it goes.

This week's prompt: RELIEF

BEGIN:

It was "just" an email that needed a reply.
I thought I was too tired to handle the emotions of writing the message that night.
But the worry kept me up anyway.
Wording. Rewording. In my head all night long.

The situation was worrying.
Communicating my concerns clearly mattered.
Mattered especially because I was advocating for my child.
But I didn't want to make the issue bigger than it was.

So first thing in the morning, I sat at my laptop.
Typing. Reading. Deleting. 
Typing. Re-reading. Deleting. Typing again.
Working hard to be concise.

Tears streaming down my face.
Hoping my care came through.
Praying my words would be heard.

I hit SEND.
And the tears turned to RELIEF.


END


Monday, January 6, 2020

Book Review: Keep the Doors Open by Kristin Berry


The book "Keep the Doors Open: Lessons Learned from a Year of Foster Parenting" by Kristin Berry was one I couldn't put down as the author's storytelling and heart-sharing pulled me in immediately.

Author Kristin Berry shares her family's "why" in serving as a foster family in her area and then walks through a full year of what that journey looked like and felt like for them, keeping their doors open.  She authentically details the highs with the lows, the challenges and heart breaks, as well as the small victories along the way.  And while the story is written from her personal experience and perspective, she does a great job of sharing the perspectives of her husband and children along the way.



This book spoke to my heart because of our family's foster-to-adopt journey and at times I was nodding right along with the author.  But this book is really a great read for anyone, especially those with any interactions with the foster care system (foster parent, friends of foster families, medical or other professionals who work with foster families on occasion, etc).  It provides a unique perspective to those who haven't walked a foster care journey, insight to those considering or exploring foster care, and affirmation to those who have been or currently are foster families.  Plus many of the lessons described by the author can be applied to other ministries or walks of life: asking others for help, loving others, serving as a family and so much more. 

 But be warned, you will get to the end of her one year journey and want to know what happened next :)



*I was given an early release copy of this book as part of the launch team. My review and my words are my own.


Please Note: The need for foster parents continues to rise.  If this is something on your heart, please take the next step... whether to read more, research your county's services, attend an info session, talk to a foster parent or get in touch with Family Services in your area.
Here's a local news article on the current Foster Parent need in Minnesota.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Happy New Year 2020!

This is us and our NYE. No fancy table decorations or place settings. Just us and our simple fondue, lingering around the table, having lively conversations, making top 10 lists and bucket lists, as we cooked our food one bite at a time. Love this tradition!


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