Thursday, March 26, 2015

Let My Spirit Hear

I'm stripping the paint off this built in bookcase.
When I was growing up, the Von Erich wrestling family was a big deal. These brothers were a force to be reckoned with. In a tag team match up when one massive, strong brother needed a break, he simply called for his equally forceful brother to take his place and give him a break. I found myself standing in my kitchen this week wishing that I had a tag team partner. This has been a week of vomit, tantrums, things falling apart, and health issues. If y'all could just send me a Von Erich. 

I'm really glad for random funny things that pop into my head. They take the burden off all that we have taken on here. I did make the mistake of looking up the Von Erich family on Wikipedia. It made me so sad. Only one of the six brothers are still living. 

Sometimes you think things are tiresomefor you and then you read a much more tragic story. I am bone deep tired from all of the hats I wear. Then I have been reading Kisses From Katie and then the Von Erich story and I think things could be much worse. Things could be much more devastating. Then, I also have to remind myself that just because my case isn't the worst case scenario doesn't mean it isn't hard. It still requires healing, grace, and mercy. It can be hard with a naturally joyful disposition to want to take things head on, but I am trying. It's back to the doctor. It's hard talks. It's asking for help. It's bathing every single thing in prayer. 

As I strip paint, chase children, work, counsel, paint, clean, and deal with hurt, I see this favorite book of mine sitting on my desk. 
I opened it to this.
"Then shall all shackles fall; the
stormy clangor
Of wild war music o'er the earth
shall cease;
Love shall tread out the baleful fire of anger,
And in it's ashes plant the tree of

Here are some other things from the past week.

New in my shop 20x20 $35

Visit my Etsy Shop!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Rasmus and the Vagabond by Astrid Lindgren

There are a couple of voracious readers in the Cherry house. I never miss an opportunity to review a young reader because Lulu will be hot on my heels to read it. She kept telling me to hurry up as well as sneaking it out of my room. I am quite certain that you will see it on her blog soon.

This was a cute book in my humble opinion. The author, Astrid Lindgren also wrote Pippi Longstocking. This story follows upon the same whimsical lines as Pippi. The characters just plain make you happy. The vagabond, Oscar, refers to himself as "God's best friend." It's terribly cute. We follow our escaped orphan and his traipsing friend all over the country side as they seek food, shelter, and fight bandits. There is a lot of sweet character in this book. Of course, you could pick it apart morally, but I just enjoyed their story. It's like Pippi. Of course we see the things that are not perfect, but her character and heart shine through. It's much like most people we know. Share it with your kids. 

This book was graciously provided for review by Plough Publishing.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

I never buy books at a retail store. Let's be honest. They are crazy overpriced. I do love to be in them, however. The truth is I never get to go. If I do, I have three girls in tow and I and can usually be found reading Beatrix Potter. One day around Christmas, my man and I ventured into Barnes and Noble while my mom watched the children. All the grown-up books, y'all. Swoon. I came across a table of classics for sale and I had never read The Sun Also Rises. I decided I would bring a little Hemingway home with me. 

I have been reading it in between the other books I read each week (I feel as though I just wrote a truly nerdy statement). Let's just say I had a love/hate relationship with ol' Ernest. I felt the whole time that I was reading a book about nothing. These people are basically bar hopping the entire time. How is that even a book? They do take one jaunt down to watch the bulls run at Pamplona (a favorite pastime of Hemingway himself). I kept feeling like I was bored, but I noticed a little magic in his writing. Even though I felt like I was following one superficial story after another, I realized that our author was slowly releasing very small deep tidbits about the people. At the end of the book, I found myself caring about the characters. Somehow, he allows his reader to peer into the deep and tormented souls of his characters with short sentences. Did the book move me to tears or deeply stir my soul? No. It did do what every great book does, draw the heart to care. Well written characters help you love people in many various forms. Hemingway did that for me. Kudos Ernest. 

Hemingway won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954. He was referred to as the author of the lost generation. You can read more about Ernest Hemingway here

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Our Women's Retreat

This past weekend, I was given the honor of taking a little bit of Gomer to the ladies at my church and a few handfuls of our friends. I cherished the opportunity to pray over these women. On Friday night we had great worship and a beautiful message from the Rev. Dr. Chris Richardson from Titus 3:2.
I have been praying this verse over myself and these ladies and Chris for an entire year. I have written it in my journal and thought about it every day. How can we show this full humility to everyone around us... in our home, our work place, our extended family? How can I love and respect in such a way that it builds people up in character and grace? The sermon was beautiful in every way. That worship, y'all. My bffs delivered! I have buckets of love for these people and I am deeply grateful for their hard work. Running a retreat is easy when you have an amazing team. 

My dear friend Gwynne helped me decorate. We met at the ladies retreat a few years ago and so every year we proclaim it our anniversary. She's amazing, y'all. Of course, nothing ever goes as planned, but I sometimes think it works out better that way. I was in full submission to the Holy Spirit. I heard so many beautiful stories of what the Lord did in the hearts of hurting people. That is all that is important. Jesus was felt in the hearts of the ladies.
We had an awesome time painting. Our brunch was gorgeous. That oatmeal cookie granola knocked my socks off. Nancy, our 80 year old matriarch of all things food and her helpers did amazing. I am so thankful for them.
We hung our hearts on this old window. We wrote things we were thankful for and things we were petitioning God for. On Saturday morning, my friend Anne spoke to us about her prayer journey and blessed the ladies by giving them hope. She reminded us that God is with us even in our deep despair and seeming failures. He uses it all to change us. 

We were challenged to reach out and form beautiful relationships. It it the Father heart that we love our brothers and sisters. Reach out to someone today.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Own Your Life by Sally Clarkson

I usually post books that I have been given by the publishing company, but I kept seeing this book and downloaded it to read while traveling. If you have read Sally's books, you love her. She writes in such humble and caring ways. Her words help us think that we are going to make it. This book is no different. Sally really drove home the things I think we all want. 

We want to order our day without idolizing it. We want to be fully present with our children while encouraging them to fly. Our desire is to love our husbands deeply and with full humility so that we are blessing them to become and be. It seems to be quite a lot. We all want this mentor to speak life giving words into our ears to help us be and do and live. Most of us just have these nagging voices surrounding us because people are generally not equipped to work in such a way. Sally is. She speaks life into our very core. She is that voice in the desert of motherhood and marriage that not only urges us to press on, but to honor and love in it. Pick up a copy and enjoy Sally's wisdom.

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Bats In the Belfry: A Gomer's House Original

I cannot believe that I am telling this story, but it is part of our journey here. Most of the drafts and holes that were drilled to insulate this old joint have been covered with dry wall. There were, however three of these holes still visible on our second floor. Each hole is about 3 inches in diameter and stuffed full with insulation. One of those holes somehow lost its insulating factor and was just wide open to the third floor and the outside. You can see what is coming.

One day I look up to see Denbigh wildly waving his hands at me to speak privately in the other room. I can't say that he has ever done this before so I was marginally panicked. He proceeded to tell me that there was a bat hanging on the wall in our upstairs dining room. Yes, y'all, a bat.

Of course, I started shouting to call the mounted police as I quickly ushered my girls to another room. Denbigh called our beloved neighbor Fritz to help capture the bat. In no time these guys had captured our new friend (in my tupperware) and released it back into the wild. If you could have only heard these men go on about the manliness and bat catching prowess over supper. It was quite humorous. 

Immediately, I asked Alan if he could come cover our bat cave with dry wall. On Monday, he did. Thank you, Alan! You're awesome. You wear cool shirts.

When I was in elementary, I must have watched The Great Outdoors a few hundred times. I think I broke the VHS I recorded it on from watching it so much. Our bat fiasco reminded me of a classic scene from the movie.

Miscarriage | Infertility | Hope

I encountered Jesus as a young child in a church pew in the balcony of an old country church. Through a lifetime of trial, I knew he was the...