Thursday, July 19, 2018

Grace at Home No. 305

Hello and welcome, friends! I'm so grateful to welcome you to this week's Grace at Home party, where we celebrate all the ways we make our homes places of grace.

You might have noticed that I took a couple of weeks off from hosting the party. The reason for that? Well, one reason is that it's mid-summer. But the main reason is that I've been spending pretty much every minute looking like this:

That's me in my natural habitat these days: working on the manuscript of my book. (If you didn't know, I'm thrilled to tell you that I'm writing a book for InterVarsity Press called Mythical Me: Escaping the Trap of Comparison.) My manuscript is due August 1, which is less than two weeks from now! YIKES!

I'd surely appreciate your prayers for me as I work like crazy to finish this book. I'm excited about it, and that's a good thing, because writing a book is hard work.  I have renewed respect for authors.

Meanwhile, though, I'm interested to hear from y'all and see what you've been up to. Grace at Home is (usually) a weekly place for you to share posts about
  • DIY projects
  • decorating
  • recipes
  • hospitality
  • homemaking tips
  • parenting
  • marriage
  • faith
  • self-care
  • soul care
Whatever you do to make your home a place of grace, I'd like to hear about it.  Here's what I ask of you.  Please include the permalink to your post, not your blog's home page.  Please let people know that you've linked up.  No more than three posts per person, please.  Note that if you link a post here, you are giving me permission to share your post, including a photo.  And visit at least one of the other party participants--that's what really makes it a party!

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Midsummer Catch-Up

Midsummer?! Holy cow, how did that happen?

The past six weeks have been some of the busiest of my life. The other day I heard the Gershwin tune "Summertime" and had to chuckle. . .

And the livin' is easy. . .

Not this summer!

If you follow me on Instagram, you've seen a little of what I've been up to, but even my posting on Instagram has been sparse for the past several weeks. Here's a look at what I've been up to lately.

Memorial Day weekend: Visited my son, Lieutenant JG William Parham, USN. Will is still in training to be a jet fighter pilot. He's currently stationed in Meridian, Mississippi, and I got to go with him into the hangar.

Then my husband and I traveled to Washington, D.C., where we attended the annual gala fundraiser for the Hillwood Museum. Hillwood is the beautiful home of Marjorie Merriwether Post. Jack took this photo of me on the stairs.

Next stop: George Fox University in Newberg, Oregon, where I got to take part in a pastors'  conference celebrating the 40th anniversary of the publication of Celebration of Discipline. I didn't take any photos, but a friend snapped this one of me teaching a workshop on the discipline of confession.

Funny how my left hand is a blur--apparently I use my hands a lot when I talk!

I got home just in time to celebrate my middle son Preston's 25th birthday. Jack and I gave him boots and waders for fly fishing. Look! He's a giant in those things!

The next week I headed to Colorado Springs for the annual Renovaré Ministry Team retreat. Serving on this team is one of the greatest privileges of my life. These people are some of my dearest friends, and we only get together as a whole group once a year, so our time there is precious. Here are a few snapshots.

James Bryan Smith, George Skramstad, and me:

Nathan Foster and me:

Carolyn Arends and me:

Marti Ensign, caught in the middle of telling a wonderful story:

Gayle Withnell and me:

Immediately after the Ministry Team retreat we had a Renovar√© Board meeting (I serve as Vice-Chair of that board). Here's Richard Foster on the last day of our board meeting, which happened to be my 33rd wedding anniversary. He'd written an anniversary message to me on the whiteboard. 

After I got home from Colorado, Jack and I headed to our little place in the Blue Ridge mountains. We were thrilled when his sister's family joined us there for a couple of days. I snapped this photo of my beautiful sister-in-law and niece.  

With all that traveling, it's been hard to catch my breath. But most days, you can find me looking like this:

The manuscript of my book, Mythical Me: Escaping the Trap of Comparison, is due to InterVarsity Press on August 1, so I'm constantly sitting at my computer these days, surrounded by books and papers. I'd so appreciate your prayers as I finish up this manuscript—I'll be so happy to turn this over to the expert editors at IVP. (You can read more about my book here—I really do covet your prayers!)

Whew--just reading about the past few weeks makes me tired. But I'm so grateful for all these opportunities. Now, tell me--what have you been up to? I'd love to hear!