Archives for March 2015

Love Your Home Challenge {& Book Release Day!}

Love Your Home Challenge {& Book Release Day!}

The day has arrived!! Welcome to the online launch party for Love the Home You Have! As of today, Love the Home You Have is officially released into the world! :) HOORAY! I can’t believe it’s been TWO whole YEARS since I came up with the proposed title and created the outline for this book.

It’s been a big part of my life for so long that I’m really happy to finally be able to share it with you all! (I can’t take ALL the credit for the book, of course, I had a wonderful team of people putting their hearts into this, too.)

OK, let’s get this party started! I have a special gift for YOU at the end of this post, but first, I’m excited to introduce you to the Love Your Home Challenge and 33 friends who will inspire us today!

In the back of Love the Home You Have, I offer readers a special section called a 31 Day Love Your Home Challenge. It has fun, no-fuss, easy-to-do activities to inspire you to love your home and life a little more.

So I thought it would be super fun to all do these challenges TOGETHER! Let’s all show our homes a little love.

You can do your own Love Your Home Challenge project (select one or more from the back of the book, or make up your own!) and post it on your blog and Home Love Stories (a perfect way to share, even if you don’t have a blog!), or on your Facebook or Instagram accounts! Do one today or anytime you are inspired, or do all 31 to make loving your home a habit!

If you do a challenge, be sure to use the hashtag #LoveYourHomeChallenge when you post it on social media or Home Love Stories so we can find your posts! You can do them anytime this week or beyond! Feel free to grab the Love Your Home graphic from this post or any of the special graphics from the book page. Thanks for inspiring others to love their homes, too!

Love Your Home Challenge {& Book Release Day!}To help kick things off, I asked thirty-three friends to see if they might want to join me in launching the book today by doing their own Love Your Home Challenge! Happily, they said YES!

So, take a moment to click through to visit of these pretty faces TODAY (their links are below) to see what they have to share. You’ll be inspired by their projects and heart for their homes, so enjoy!


Reluctant Entertainer

PS. I wanted to give you a special thank you gift! I appreciate you all so much, I can’t even tell you the wonderful support I’ve received from you all on this journey. As a little token of appreciation, I have a gift for you. The wonderful designer (Nicole, from Harvest House Publishers) who created the book art also designed the adorable hand illustrated art print, below, just for YOU (for personal use only)!

You can download the art for FREE in many sizes from small to huge (and one with a white background) to use as art for your home or a gift for someone special. Wouldn’t it make an adorable housewarming gift?

Find the art on the Love the Home You Have book page, along with the cutest hand drawn quotes. Free free to download, pin, share and use these on your blog, Facebook or Instagram to spread love for the home far and wide! Click here to download!

Love Your Home Challenge {& Book Release Day!}

Don’t forget to visit all the participants (linked above) and join in with a home love project of your own!

If you don’t yet have a book, you can order it here!
 (P.S., today is the LAST day to get 50% off the digital version)!

A Forever House {The Tale of a Telescope}

A Forever House {The Tale of a Telescope}

I‘ve always had a dream to live in forever house. But that desire was often in conflict with my dreams to find the perfect house first. I’m a crazy house lover, you probably have gathered that by now.

A few months ago, my parents sold our family beach house. It was in our family for most of my kids’ lives and we had the joy of spending nearly every spring, summer and winter vacation we could there in that house on the Oregon coast. We thought it would be our forever family home. Due to various circumstances, the time came for my parents to sell it and move on.

A Forever House {The Tale of a Telescope}

We were very sad to see the beach house go, but one of the little treasures we received from that house is the brass telescope. Our kids used to look for whales with it. They would often see an object way out in the ocean and get so excited because they were certain it was some sort of sea creature! Usually upon looking through the telescope they discovered that the whale shapes were actually rocks, but nevertheless, it was fun to be able to imagine they were WHALES!

I love having that telescope in our family room now. Not only because of the special memories of it in the beach house, but because I think it has a deeper symbolism of where home and happiness is, how we search for it and where we find it.

A Forever House {The Tale of a Telescope}

Moving has been a regular part of our life, for better for worse, it happens! The experience of moving can be anywhere on the spectrum from a joy-filled journey to a sad and exhausting one. So many emotions surrounding finding our homes, right?

It was really hard to leave behind our house and life in Portland six years ago. It was really hard to move here, not know anyone and start a church. Yet, there was a certain amount of excitement about the new home, new beginnings and opportunities.

It was very hard to say goodbye to the beach house a few months ago, yet what a blessing to have had it for so many years! The memories will always be with us, so it served us well.

Transitions and moving to new places can be hard. Letting go of a home we loved and created memories in is never easy, even if moving is a positive step. Yet staying in one place when we wish we could move on to other adventures can be discouraging, too!

Moving to a new place can also be one of the most thrilling times in life. It’s fun to dream and it can be pretty exciting when you start to see new beginnings take shape on the horizon!

But if we only look at our home and life through a long range telescope, either looking back to what used to be, or only looking way out ahead to what could be if or when we have more ideal circumstances, it’s easy to miss out on cherishing what is right here and now.

Things can get a little fuzzy when we are constantly trying to adjust our perspective, but it makes all the difference when you start looking through the appropriate lens for the right point of view. Looking back can help us to learn lessons so we can make better decisions going forward. Dreaming of possibilities can help bring clarity and focus, if we keep our hearts grounded in what really matters right here and now. And if you are like me, you MIGHT keep a pair of binoculars in your car JUST IN CASE you spot your dream house behind a hedge on a drive by in your favorite neighborhood. :)A Forever House {The Tale of a Telescope}

I still think a forever house would be wonderful, even if it is humble, but sometimes life throws you for a loop and before you know it, a new adventure is on the horizon. But that’s the great thing about a home. It’s always a part of you, wherever you go.

Our home will shape and transform our life for the better if we love it well, whether it’s our forever home or it’s a temporary dwelling we will always remember.

I’m SO excited to share my new book with you all tomorrow as it is finally released into the world! (You can preorder and it could even arrive tomorrow!!) I will have fun surprises for you, an opportunity to share your love for your home and some great home inspiration from some of my blogging friends all lined up, so see ya here tomorrow?

A Forever House {The Tale of a Telescope}

Let’s have a virtual book launch party! I’ll bring the cookies and brew the coffee! PS. If you signed up to help with book promotion, I’ll be inviting the team to the FB group today!

Meanwhile, let’s discuss how we feel about moving! The good, the bad, the ugly and the adventure of it all. Tell me your house hunting adventures or moving stories in the comments! <3

(And before you go, have you checked out Home Love Stories yet? It’s like our own personal international house hunters–so many fun stories, homes and people over there from all over the world. Come join us!)