Lessons Learned

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While we build our homes, we build our lives.

Most days, this little log home is filled with giggles and running feet. Some days our high cathedral ceilings echo with stomping feet and angry voices. With eight strong personalities in 1400 sq feet, the sparks fly. We love fiercely!

I knew when we chose the open layout that it simultaneously allowed for large gatherings and loud echos.

What we didn't know, but suspected, was how much a home would define and refine us. We had grown to identify with our 100-year old duplex. We had people ask in condemning tones if we “still lived in that duplex?”  dripping with heavy shame.

I struggled and allowed that shame to define me until the day I decided to seriously love where we were and trust God with my whole house. That moment was a huge turning point. As I donated bag after bag to charity, I started to see my home with new eyes. The burden lifted and I could see how grateful I was for the lesson learned in that 100-year old duplex, where we lived for almost 9 years.

Then, we moved.

Again, we were shamed by our house choice. “You don’t live in a log home, do you? Isn’t that expensive?” we were asked. “I could never afford to live in a log home,” we were told again and left speechless by people who knew nothing of our journey. This home was a gift and an answered prayer on so many levels. We had asked for it to OPEN it to others and share the goodness, which we did in spite of the shaming comments. Through lots of help and support plus a crazy turn of events, we received an amazing price on this little log house and are deeply grateful each day for the small square footage and large amounts of grace in our home.

Which brought me to understand that the concept of home DOES matter. It’s not “just” a house. It shapes us. The concept and the physical floor-plan, the location and especially what we do with it. Most importantly, how we fill it. Do we make memories and share wisdom? Do we fill it with forgiveness for the days when angry voices storm? Are we quick to read books and snuggle on the couch? Is this the kind of life we want to be the foundation for the precious lives we love? Regardless of what other people say?!

Our homes should be intertwined with our lives and serve as the canvas from which we work to create our best lives.

Freedom comes when we embrace in faith the daily calling to create a haven in our homes.

And, we also have the freedom to change it all - move, renovate, re-create, renew, restore, and build anew. If your home is not serving you or even the items in it, you have the great responsibility and joy to CHANGE without apology, no matter who might be offended or what others may say. This is your life and your home and your lessons learned.

Blessings for your journey,

Elizabeth


The Power of "Home"

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Today we are getting snowed in here in our little corner of the world, and it has me thinking, again.

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Preparing in the simple ways as the snow falls quietly on our woods, we find truths beyond us. My boys cut this cherry tree with their daddy working hard all day long. In their fun and romping play, they are building something more than just firewood.

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Cooking simple, healing foods in the kitchen means that we need it. Healing. Quietness. Soul-rest. So much in our world is sick, broken, and dirty in the past days. Even in our own homes, even in our faith. I believe that as we slow down and look at what is already in our hands, we can hear whispers of redemption if we will only listen.

In the quietness and beauty of the daily, woven in these moments both hard and beautiful, grows the truth that we so deeply need. Or perhaps it has been here all along - waiting.

Knowing.

We will find His hand even here.

Especially here.

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The Power of Home is this - it is here where God leads us to simple paths.

To work out the hard, ugly places, one step at a time.

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Snuggled in - building faith and memories, one step at a time.

I See The Beauty in Chaos

Today I welcome a GUEST BLOGGER and fantastic coach, Kendra Brodin to share her insight on minimalism. Kendra is a highly accomplished coach, attorney, mother to three amazing children, and wife to her incredible husband Ryan. Kendra’s insight is deeply authentic and raw as she shares part of her journey with you. Enjoy and Blessings, Elizabeth

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I have had the pleasure of working with Kendra, in real life and online, on several projects. She highly professional and extremely fun all at the same time!


If we want to embrace life, we also have to embrace chaos. -Susan E. Phillips, Breathing Room

Life can feel chaotic. Okay, more than a feeling — life can truly be chaotic and unpredictable.

On Monday, everything might run smoothly – my kids get along. No one loses their homework. Everyone is on the bus on time. I get (most) of my work done at the office, and I leave feeling energized and productive. I make supper and get it on the table at a reasonable hour. Homework gets done. Baths get taken. Bedtime is at an almost reasonable hour for all five of us. It’s a good day. Gold stars all around.

But then — Tuesday. On Tuesday, I feel like need a nap before I’ve left home in the morning, This kids are fighting in the morning, and we have to chase the bus. I can’t find my car keys. I forget my computer bag at home. Even more than a large coffee with an extra shot, what I really need is a do-over.

Some days I feel like I’m organized, brave, and brilliant.

Other days, I feel like a hot mess.

Maybe both are true. But this doesn’t disqualify me from an amazing life.

We can shift our focus and scan for the beauty hidden in amidst the chaos.

Life can be so hard and heart wrenching and messy and amazing all at once. Everything changes when I shift my focus to see the incredible beauty in chaos.

3 Surprising Things You Need More of as a Minimalist

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In our modern quest for simplicity, minimalism has rightly gained a prominent voice and yet the practical application often seems full of contradictions. As I looked around my minimalist log home, I realized there are 3 areas I actually have more of. The irony stuck me hard. As a minimalist, is it possible to have more?

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Enjoy this 2nd in the series by Kat Luckock, from the UK. She is the go-to Impact Strategist & Business Coach for Social Entrepreneurs. Kat and I share a similar vision to help others make intentional (and profitable) choices in life and business that support environmental stewardship. https://shareimpact.org/

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