The Life Giving Home by Sally and Sarah Clarkson has been on my nightstand since last summer. One might assume that it means that I have been trying to finish it since last summer, but in fact, it just means that I keep re-reading it. I think I’m on my fourth time though.
I rarely re-read books(especially back to back readings), but Sally in this book has managed to catch the song of my heart. The song that I desire to sing with my life everyday as I create a home, refuge, and place of belonging for my children and for weary mommy friends that sail in and drift out of my life. One that I need to be reminded of the words at least once per month.
I love the practical everyday moments that she gives as an example to create that place of belonging. While cups of tea, candles, fresh bread, cups of soup, wood fires, colorful belongings, and acoustic music on repeat through the winter months may not be everyone’s love, it certainly is mine. I also love that her daughter tells us what as a child meant most to her. It’s so easy for me to forget what I loved most as a small girl, yet I want to give those lovely gifts to my children. (also have discovered hygge (living beautifully in the moment) in the last month and am exploring those cozy habits as well. Hygge focuses on getting out of doors even when it’s cold, scented lotions, bits of tasty treats, cut stems of flowers, blankets and all things cozy, but living with less so you can live for what’s important)
I think that if you weren’t raised in a family where a mother lived this lifestyle out for you, it would be a beautiful thing to watch the story unfold as an example of beautiful motherhood. It also speaks to creating a home even when you don’t have children, and welcoming others beautifully into your heart and life.
The most beautiful thing about this book is the continual pointing to the eternal work of motherhood and home making. This isn’t a hobby, or job choice of many jobs. It is a eternal work. One that as a mother you are called to whether you work in or out of the home on a daily basis. One that no matter your life situation you can fulfill beautifully.
I loved this book so much that I started a women’s group that is doing one chapter per month together. We are reminding ourselves of the beauty of this mothering life, and exchanging ideas and encouragement. I wish I could invite each and everyone of you into my living room, hand you a cup of tea, and chat about beautiful mothering, but miles separate so many of us. Please feel free to leave ideas and comments, so we can do this together over the miles.
(Here is my review of Sally’s book, “Different.” Another must-read!