Restore During Lent {giveaway}

This weekend’s giveaway is from my friend, Elizabeth Foss.  She is offering one reader a spot in her Restore workshop.  In Elizabeth’s words:

“This year, for Lent, live Mercy. And start with yourself. This year, take your disillusioned and discouraged self and instead of flogging it, nurture it.

Somehow, women have learned that nurturing ourselves must come last. We equate holiness with sucking the life out of ourselves to give it to someone else. Newsflash: it doesn’t work that way. When we deplete ourselves–which happens over time if we aren’t careful–there is no cycle of giving and receiving. A depleted woman cannot give. She has nothing left. She hits rock bottom, exhausted and disappointed.

Let Lent be a time of transformation. Self-care isn’t selfish. It’s vital. It’s life-giving. Can you commit to spending Lent taking care of yourself, changing some habits and learning some new ones, in order to fill your own cup? Could you do that if I promise you that once your cup is full you’ll be a much better wife, mother, friend, and neighbor?”

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Restore has been updated this year to include two downloadable ebooks.  Included with the registration fee you receive:

  • Exclusive access to the daily workshop community to guide you through every day of Lent and access to the author for encouragement, allowing you ample opportunity to discuss the content of the essays in a private space with other participants and Elizabeth. Each day is a retreat-like experience.
  • The beautiful full-color 180 page ebook Talking Together About Restoration: A full-length guidebook for wholehearted healing of mind, body and soul. (attached)
  • Another beautiful ebook, Quiet Time for Lent: One-page daily devotions from Ash Wednesday through Easter Saturday to incline your days towards Him who restore. (attached)
  • Downloadable podcasts with: Sarah Mackenzie, Danielle Bean, Colleen Mitchell, Ginny Sheller, Aimee Kollmansberger, Anne Bogel, and Ann Voskamp and printable transcripts of all the podcasts
  • Full color tutorials for these ways to connect your heart with your hands: Healing Salve and Bath Salts, Flannel Cozies,
  • Sweatproof headbands to sew (and a no sew version), Knitted washcloths and crocheted washcloths, Beautiful (really!) reusable kitchen cloths, Embellished hand towels (and a quick version for mamas with babies), Pretty vases for your Easter table (and beyond) and Fabric-covered prayer journals
  • Printables with quotes and prayers, organizing templates for your home and your life, and lockscreen reminders for your phone.
  • Continuing community after the workshop ends in a private Facebook group.

restorebargainbundle

Elizabeth is also offering a bargain bundle this year if you are interested in an abbreviated form of Restore.  If you would like to learn more about Elizabeth’s Restore workshop, or are interested in signing up, click here.  If you would like a chance to win a spot in the full workshop, simply leave a comment on this post.  Comments are closed and the winner is Daniela who commented, “Oh, what a wonderful gift this would be. Thank you for such a thoughtful give away. -♡-”

Thanks, Elizabeth!

Waiting

I am not one for looking ahead too far, so I never put much thought into the fact that my older children would one day read aloud to my younger ones.  And now it’s happening all the time, and the ironic thing about it, is that the two children who struggled most with reading are the very ones who are now most willing to read aloud to their younger siblings.  I wish I could have caught a glimpse of that a few years ago.

And I don’t think that anything could have prepared me for the way that it feels when I am able to share things with my little girls, special things that they seem to understand in the same way that I do.  So often I find myself remarking to Larkspur, “You are such a Mini-Ginny.”  And the other day, when I received a package in the mail from my Aunt Genie containing a paperweight from my grandmother’s desk along with her leather gloves, Beatrix looked at me with complete understanding when the tears started running down my cheeks.  I remember that paperweight.  I remember her wearing those gloves, and written inside each one, in her cursive, her name.

As my older children are getting older, and my youngest pair naughtier it seems, there are plenty of difficult parenting moments, and times when those moments feel heavier than the good ones.  But I’m starting to feel a shift towards something profound and priceless in the relationships with my older children especially.  That kindred feeling that comes from being so close.  We’ve created a family in all its heartache and glory.

But oftentimes lately, we are feeling too close.  Crowded.  I’ve talked about it off and on over the years here.  We have seriously considered leaving and then decided not yet, more than once.  Our house is 1500 sq. feet.  As dear as it is to us, this first home of ours, in some ways it has ceased to fill our needs.  Though it seems nearly impossible that we could ever prepare it to sell with such a big family living in it, I am beginning to believe that we will move from this place.  If not this year, certainly someday.

The first time my dad and I acknowledged to each other that I am pregnant again, it was him casually asking me, “So, where are you going to put this one?”  I replied that the new baby wasn’t the issue.  She’ll be tiny and I’ll keep her with me.  It’s all these big boys bouncing off the walls.  It’s the laundry spilling into our living space from our one downstairs bath that doubles as a laundry room.  Our house is lovely, but it’s literally overflowing.

Jonny and I have been working hard over the past six months or so, doing extra work to pay off debt, to make repairs on the house, wanting to be ready.  Last December, not really even meaning to, we came across a home that demanded consideration.  More accurately, a home that Jonny has been watching for years finally dropped in price to a point that we thought we might be able to almost afford it, if we really scraped and worked hard.  It’s a big farm, actually, that we think could be the place for our family.  A forever place.  The house has been empty for a decade or so, and on the market for just as long.  It was last updated in the early 70s.  It’s not giant.  There aren’t separate bedrooms for all.  It’s not fancy.  The bathroom tile is out of this world ugly.  But we think it could be just right.  I emailed photos over to my mom which resulted in a flurry of emails from her, each one containing listings for other homes in our area on acreage.  Newer homes.  I tried to explain to her that while those might look nicer on the surface, they just weren’t right for us.  Later during a discussion about asbestos testing, I laughed to Jonny, “I don’t know what’s wrong with us.  It’s like we’re determined to experience death by old house.”  We put an offer on that farm a couple of weeks ago, and the owners didn’t take it.  I considered writing a letter to accompany our offer, sharing a bit about our family and the dreams we have for the farm.  But I was terrified to try that hard if that makes any sense.  The owner’s agent claims that they are preparing a counter offer, but we have yet to see it, and if it’s far from the offer we made, we won’t be able to swing it anyway.  And that would be allright (though Jonny might dress in full mourning for a time).  It may be that Jonny is supposed to start an addition on our current home this year (heaven help me).  Or maybe we’re supposed to move to a home even older than our current one, needing more extensive renovation, but residing on the land that we have dreamed of for years.  And of course there is plan C, whatever that might be.  Right now I can’t shift my focus much further than the little one growing inside me.  So for today, I’ll keep battling the laundry right where I am and trusting that God has a plan for tomorrow.