It is so different from the type of books I typically read. It reads like a series of journal entries or blog posts about various events from the author's life and the lessons she learned from those moments. At the end of most chapters, there were recipes that tied in to the story somehow- most of which I saved to make because they all sounded so delicious.
Every time I sat down to read, I felt like I was picking back up with an old friend. I connected with the author on so many levels and had a number of "take-aways" from her book.
Here is one of my favorite quotes from her book:
"I want to cultivate a deep sense of gratitude, of groundedness, of enough, even while I'm longing for something more. The longing and the gratitude, both. I' m practicing believing that God knows more than I know, that he sees what I can't, that he's weaving a future I can't even imagine from where I sit this morning."
She and I (the author that is- we're friends now in my head) share a love for food, for cooking, for entertaining and making memories with other people in our homes.
If there was one big take away from this book, it's that I want to have people over more often. Life is busy, and it's only going to get busier, but the memories that are made and the encouragement we feel whenever we have people over is worth the time to pause from our busy schedules.
In the same way, she talked about traveling with her kids, even though staying at home is definitely the easier option, especially when kids are young. But I loved what she had to say about embracing those stages and just going:
"...we travel because it's there. Because Capri exists and Kenya exists and Tel Aviv exists, and I want my kids to learn, as I learned, that there are a million ways to live, a million ways to eat, a million ways to dress and speak and view the world. I want them to know that 'our way' isn't the right way, but just one way, that children all over the world, no matter how different they seem, are just like the children in our neighborhood- they love to play, to discover, to learn. I want my kids to learn firsthand and up close that different isn't bad, but instead that different is exciting and wonderful and worth taking the time to understand. I want them to see themselves as bit players in a huge, sweeping, beautiful play, not as the main characters in the drama of our living room."
And probably my favorite quote from her book comes from a section in which she's speaking openly of heartache and loss and the lessons she learned through those seasons in her life:
"...if the last few years have taught me anything at all, it's that the very things you think you need most desperately are the things that can transform you the most profoundly when you do finally decide to release them. The college I had my heart set on, the boyfriend I believed would be my husband, the job that defined me, the pregnancy I believed would end a season of longing and loss. Each one, pulled from my grubby fists, each one teaching me something fundamental about desire and transformation. Over and over, I learn the hard way that the thing I'm clinging to can be the thing that sets me free." (emphasis added by me because I love that line so much)
I read this book on my iPad and marked line after line of quotes that stuck with me. I could sit here and share every last one with you, but instead, I think you really just need to read the whole book for yourself.
So I'm giving away a copy for one of you to enjoy!
Just leave a comment below telling me about a recent book you read and loved (because I'm looking for more to add to my reading list). ;)
And the book doesn't need to be a memoir- it can be any great book you've read and loved.
The winner will be announced Friday!
Have a great week, friends.