Good Gifts

Embroidery floss and a Better Homes and Gardens Junior Cookbook – those were the only disappointing gifts my mom ever gave me. She was determined to fashion me as the perfect homemaker, but I was a messy child who just wanted to have fun. I begged yearly for a Lite Brite, but Mom asserted that I would litter the house with tiny lights, clogging her vacuum and rendering my toy neither light nor bright. So, every Christmas and birthday I could reliably expect more colorful floss along with stamped pillowcases on which I could practice those all-important Regency era skills.

family

My family and me, 1971

My dad was a Lutheran pastor – eloquent, kind, and faithful. Determined to be an exemplary pastor’s wife, my mom was immaculate and frugal. They both instilled in me a love of books and encouraged me to visit our local library and to place regular orders from the Scholastic Book Catalog during my school years. My parents also gave me a potent wanderlust. When I was two years old, they purchased a second-hand Apache pop-up camper. It was nothing more than two plywood bed platforms draped in canvas, but we used it to see most of the United States – my parents all the while encouraging me not to stop at either coast but to look beyond to the other people and other places that God created.

fav-books

Two of my favorite classic books and a bit of embroidery floss from my considerable stash

The best gifts from my mom and dad – curiosity and a love of travel, language, and books – more than compensated for a few lackluster presents under the Christmas tree. This blog will be about those gifts and how they continue to influence my life as a good enough mother, decent wife, often inept homemaker, and rabid reader and traveler. I’m a Christian, too, so sometimes I’ll relate how that informs the other parts of me, but I won’t shoehorn Jesus into a post about, say, the Eiffel Tower or Jane Eyre.

Finally, I’ll talk some about my book, I Don’t Want to Have the Prayer: A Messy Pastor’s Kid Does Her Memory Work. It sprang from years of parsonage life, my peculiar German heritage, and my strong and loving parents. Bottom line: it’s about a messy little girl turned messy adult who is loved by a Savior Who makes her clean.

I hope you’ll join me as I talk about books that have left an imprint on my heart and places that stir my soul.

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1 Comment

  1. Laura Hildreth

    I love your stories! So engaging.

    Reply

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