Treat Yourself / Weekend Links: November Edition

14997015_10153913047722056_565957436_n This week, y’all.

I think our minds and hearts are all a bit battered.

I’ve stayed off the internet since the day after the election, but these posts rose to the surface in the initial aftermath of Tuesday. They helped me breathe, encouraged me to move forward in love, and reminded me to find comfort and purpose in the right-now rhythms of my everyday life. I hope they’ll do the same for you.



Edie’s Chipotle Pumpkin Soup {with barley and chicken}

Part of loving your people well means feeding them. My friend made me this soup a couple of weeks ago and it might be my favorite soup of all time. It is the epitome of comfort food. {We can’t quit Edie’s soups.}



Watching, Reading, Listening

  • I watched The Great Gatsby last night {the new one} with my daughter and it was just okay for me. Baz Luhrmann’s films sometimes make me feel more stressed than enchanted. But the acting is wonderful and the costuming is on point. Plus Carey Mulligan plays Daisy and I adore her.
  • This Is Us, a new show on NBC. I love, love, love it. I think I’ve cried in every episode, so be warned.
  • {Currently reading} The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery by Ian Morgan Cron and Suzanne Stabile. We’ll talk more about the Enneagram later but I’m loving this book and I’ve listened to all of their podcasts. I got into the Enneagram about 7 years ago and it changed my life. The framework and self-awareness impacts how I think about myself and how I think about others every. single. day. Next to the Gospel, the Enneagram has been the second most game-changing lens of my life.
  • After listening to all their podcasts, I read Jesus, My Father, and the CIA: A Memoir…of Sorts, also by Ian Morgan Cron. I love a good memoir and I highly recommend this one. I couldn’t put it down.


The blog has been quiet in November but I did pen this post, the day after The Election That Shall Not Be Named:

Every vote has a story behind it. If we don’t make space in our minds and hearts to understand this, we will continue to be marked by division instead of connection.

Wherever this weekend takes you, may you find hope and possibility, right where you are. Happy weekend, friends!


New here? I’m all about helping you recapture the possibility of your right-now life.

If that sounds like something you need, sign up in the box below to receive fresh hope and possibility delivered to your inbox no more than a couple of times a week.

And I have a gift for subscribers:

If you’re overwhelmed by the many educational options for your kids, if you’re curious about the most important questions to ask, I have a FREE resource created just for you!

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*P.S. Amazon links are affiliates and help keep the lights on in this little corner of the internet. Thanks for your kind support!



Treat Yourself / Weekend Links: October Edition


October may just be my favorite month of the year. In our neck of the woods, it’s a changing leaves / Friday night lights / college football homecoming / let’s eat soup kind of weekend.

So settle in and enjoy these treats for your weekend.




Edie’s Best Ever Beef Stew

I made this last weekend and ohmygosh, it was worth every bit of time in the kitchen and, like most soup, was even yummier the next day. Edie is the soup whisperer and I’ll try any soup she suggests.

Richella’s Pumpkin Bread

I’ve been making this pumpkin bread {which seriously takes only 5 minutes to mix and prepare} for probably 3 or 4 years now and it’s my family’s favorite. Once you see the recipe you’ll realize this is really just pumpkin cake pretending to be pumpkin bread, but that’s why it’s so good! Worth every calorie and so, so easy.



Both of these have already come and gone in theaters and now they’re on Netflix. Giddy up.

Last weekend my girl and I watched The Imitation Game.


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Unbelievable film. Unbelievable story. I see now why it won so many awards. Also, Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightly are two of my favorite Brits so that’s fun. If you’re a Downton Abbey fan, you’ll also recognize “Tom Branson” and “Henry Talbot.” Bonus.

This weekend I’ve already watched Spotlight.

I’m still trying to find the words but I was riveted to every single second of this film. I would watch it again right this second if I didn’t have to be a semi-responsible grown-up. Also, it made me want to move to a big city and become an investigative journalist. One hundred percent my dream job.

I’m tempted to list all sorts of disclaimers here but we all have different movie sensitivities. What I can handle may not be for you and vice versa. So just do your research before you tune in.



Because if we can’t find something to laugh about in this horrific political climate, we’re doomed as a nation. My husband and I both watched this “musically reimagined” video of the most recent debate and laughed till we cried.



All The Pretty Things: The Story of a Southern Girl Who Went through Fire to Find Her Way Home by Edie Wadsworth

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I read this entire book on a Sunday a couple of weeks ago and y’all, it’s such a beautiful story. I couldn’t put it down. If you liked The Glass Castle {one of my favorite books ever}, you’ll love Edie’s memoir.

Falling Free: Rescued from the Life I Always Wanted by Shannan Martin

I wrote about this book and my abiding love for Shannan in this post. Now scoot on over to amazon and get your copy.

The Broken Way: A Daring Path Into the Abundant Life by Ann Voskamp

I’ve only read the first chapter of this book, which Ann provided free for blog subscribers, and it moved me so deeply. I wrestle with the brokenness of my own life and this world every single day. I can’t wait to read the rest as I know this is such a timely message for me, and maybe for you too.


In case you missed it:

On the blog from the last month. These three posts have felt uniquely personal and special. I loved writing each of them.


The Ministry of Netflix

How the Broken + Beautiful Lives of Others Help Us Live a More Compassionate Story

How a 92-Year-Old Woman Taught Me the Real Value of My Right-Now Work


That’s a wrap. The loveliest of October weekends to you all!!!



New here? I’m all about helping you recapture the possibility of your right-now life.

If that sounds like something you need, sign up in the box below to receive fresh hope and possibility delivered to your inbox no more than a couple of times a week.

And I have a gift for subscribers:

If you’re overwhelmed by the many educational options for your kids, if you’re curious about the most important questions to ask, I have a FREE resource created just for you!

school made simple freebie header

*P.S. Amazon links are affiliates and help keep the lights on in this little corner of the internet. Thanks for your kind support!




8 Favorite Resources to Help Make Your Hoped-For Work a Possibility in Your Right-Now Life

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These are a collection of resources, some as short as a blog post and others as long as a book, that have helped me approach my work in recent years. {Both my right-now work and my hoped-for work.}

For me, the best resources are ones that I return to, quote, remember, and recommend. All of these qualify. Here they are, in no particular order.


1. “How to Make Time and Space for the Life You Really Want” by Ann Voskamp.
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This post of hers inspired this post of mine. It was, in a sense, the catalyst for the entire series and the inspiration I needed to create time when I didn’t have any to spare.


2. Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

This book y’all. Its message rings in my ears whenever any opportunity presents itself. I don’t believe we have to be all or nothing with our yeses and our no’s. But I do believe we need to be wise and deliberate. Essentialism is like a shot glass of permission to spend yourself wisely. I say “no” with much less guilt now. And I say “yes” with more confidence.


3. The Magical Key to Doing It All by Kendra Adachi at The Lazy Genius Collective

What’s the solution? Being you. And your “all” looks different than mine or anyone else’s.

This short post is like a reset button for your life and your to-do list. The LGC helps all of us “be a genius about the things that matter and lazy about the things that don’t.” This, in my opinion, is simply Being an Adult 101, and I think they should teach it in school.


4. A Million Little Ways: Uncover the Art You Were Made to Life by Emily P. Freeman

“Do you desperately fear you have nothing to offer the world but secretly hope you’re wrong?” Then get this book.

It’s time to uncover the shape of your soul, turn down the voice of the inner critic, and move into the world with the courage to be who you most deeply are. Creating a life of meaning is not about finding that one great thing you were made to do, it’s about knowing the one great God you were made to glorify–in a million little ways.

It’s no secret that I’m one of Emily’s biggest fans and have gobbled up everything she’s written over the last 8 or 9 years. She is my soul sister. The end.


5. The Quotidian Mysteries: Laundry, Liturgy, and Women’s Work by Kathleen Norris

Yes to anything that makes laundry feel sacred and that’s written with the scholarly and gentle voice of Kathleen Norris. This book is tiny. {88 pages, yay!} Best of all, it inspires me to embrace the “mundane” work of my right-now life with gratitude and grace, a thoughtful reminder that “laundry, liturgy, and women’s work all serve to ground us in the world, and they need not grind us down.”


6. Choosing Rest: Cultivating a Sunday Heart in a Monday World by Sally Breedlove

Again, this is a book that makes me breathe deeply and removes all traces of panic from my work. It’s not easy to rest when there’s so much to finish, whether it’s the dishes or my writing or relationships that aren’t tidy. If you can relate, this book will be a gift. It’s one to read slowly and restfully, one that you’ll want to re-read when you need reminding of what true rest looks like.


7. Better Than Before: What I Learned About Making and Breaking Habits–to Sleep More, Quit Sugar, Procrastinate Less, and Generally Build a Happier Life by Gretchen Rubin

Gretchen Rubin is our Type-A friend who is so kind and common-sense, we can’t help but adore her even though she’s perfect. I love this book in its entirety but it’s worth the price of the book for the first section — explaining the four tendencies and figuring out which one you are.

I sort everyone into four categories, which describe how people tend to respond to expectations: outer expectations (a deadline, a “request” from a sweetheart) and inner expectations (write a novel in your free time, keep a New Year’s resolution).

I’m a self-professed personality test junkie. Gretchen’s simple framework has been huge in my life. Huge. {I don’t say that lightly. It’s even helped my marriage but that’s a different story.}

Knowing how I respond to an expectation {as an “Obliger”} has helped me craft my work, both my right-now jobs and my hoped-for work, in a way that’s effective for my type. For example, I need certain types of accountability and deadlines. If you’re trying to get traction as you pursue your own hoped-for work, it’s important to know what scenario works best for you and what doesn’t. P.S. She’s currently writing a book on just the four tendencies and I’m first in line.


8. Hope*Writers



This resource is for those of you who are writers. Or for those of you who think you might be a writer but you don’t have the courage to give yourself that label yet.

Wish you could sit with an author you trustand ask all your writing questions? This is your chance to do that,
Only better.

I’ve been a member of Hope*Writers since the beginning and I’m being for real when I say that these people and all they offer helps keep me in the game. I’ve been to conferences, purchased books, and read plenty on the internet over the years. This site is like all of those resources except with friends. Who are experts. But feel like next door neighbors. I’m not an affiliate; I’m just a real-life member who’s a BIG fan. And…they just launched the FREE Hope*Writers podcast.


I love it. As in, I’ve actually listened to two of the podcasts more than once because they’re chock full of practical help plus I laugh till’ I cry. {Also, if you have a listen, you’ll get a special trial offer to join Hope*Writers.}



And here’s a list of the posts in this 8-part series.

I’ll soon have a graphic in the right sidebar of the blog {or at the bottom of the page if you’re reading on a mobile device} that links to the entire series. It’s there to encourage you when you’re tempted to quit, smothered by your right-now life, and feeling like this hoped-for work is a waste of time. It’s not. There’s hope.

Never stop starting.

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It has been so fulfilling to write this series and to walk this hopeful road with you. You’ve encouraged me with your stories and asked such thoughtful questions along the way. If this series has been helpful for you, forward it to a friend and share a dose of possibility.

I doubt this is the last you’ll hear from me on the topic, so keep the questions and comments coming. What’s something you’d love to see addressed in another post? I’m all ears.

How to Embrace Your Right-Now Work Even if it’s Not Your Hoped-For Work

One Gift Your Right-Now Work Is Giving You, Even If You Smell Like Marinara Sauce

4 Simple Ways to Create Time When You Don’t Have Any to Spare

4 Reasons Why Your Right-Now Work Matters to Jesus {even if it doesn’t matter to you}

2 Ways to Give Your Hoped-For Work a Voice. Right Now.

3 Ways to Avoid Despair as You Pursue Your Hoped-For Work

“Never stop starting.” And 5 Other Truths to Keep Your Hoped-For Work Alive in the Midst of Your Right-Now Life

8 Favorite Resources to Help Make Your Hoped-for Work a Possibility in Your Right-Now Life


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