My Word, My Priority for 2014: Jesse

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You see that man in that picture?

That’s my husband, Jesse. He is strong and faithful and fun and creative and he works so hard for our family. He’s a good one.

He has been my cheerleader, my supporter, my biggest encourager; he frees me in so many ways. And so I’ve decided this year, while words are rolling around the Internet for the new year, I am giving my word to him.

My word of the year: Jesse

He will be my priority this year, my focus.

I will seek to support, encourage, cheer, and be his loving wife. He comes first. I want him to know how much he matters to me; I want him to know, to feel, to see practically my love for him. In good times and in bad.

Oh yea, I’ll mess it up. I’ll get PMS-y, and crazy sometimes, and I’ll make him want to run away. He’ll make me so angry sometimes I’ll want to throw in the towel. It happens in a marriage, you know? But I won’t give up. I’ll ask for his forgiveness, and I’ll keep on.

Marriage is hard, and it takes time to stretch into it. But it’s worth it.

He’s worth it, because he’s mine.

And I am his.

‘Till death do us part.

Love, Sarah Mae

P.S. Is your husband your word of the year? Come and link-up HERE!

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Lamplighter Theatre Dramas are only $10!!! Two days only!

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Oh my goodness.

We love, love, love Lamplighter Theatre Dramas, but I always have to wait awhile and save up before I can afford them, as they are around $35 each. You can imagine my delight when I got an email letting me know that ALL the audio downloads of Lamplighter Theatre Dramas are only $10 for the next two days.

Ya’ll.

I cannot recommend these dramas enough. They are fantastic stories full of character building lessons. We use them in the car, while my kiddos are coloring, and at night as they fall asleep. My children love them.

Our favorites are Sir Malcolm and the Missing Prince and The Hedge of Thorns.

Today I purchased Teddy’s Button.

Lamplighter Theatre helps to fulfill the mission of Lamplighter by bringing redemptive hope to the world through dramatic audio…With the talent of world-renowned actors, writers, directors, music composers, and sound engineers, Lamplighter Theatre creatively brings redemptive hope to broken lives, and compels its listeners to live life skillfully and sacrificially for the benefit of others.”

Check out the dramas HERE! Enjoy!

Love, Sarah Mae

P.S. DaySpring is having their after Christmas sale – 75% off. You can check that out HERE.

DaySrping affiliate links are used in this post.

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A Book Update, Christmas Gift Ideas, and a Giveaway!

Update: The winner of the Christmas Bundle is Jessica Arber! 

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Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

(Rockefeller Center, NYC)

Merry Christmas, friends!

Well, my book is almost done.

ALMOST DONE!!!! I turn it in January 15th, and then I’ll begin edits shortly after that. I am so so so excited about this book and I can’t wait to share about it with you all.

But not yet. ;)

I’m letting you know where I’m at with it because even though I said I wasn’t going  to write until the 15th, and then I proceeded to keep writing, I’m really, really not going to write anymore here until the book is el dente. For real.

Really. Maybe.

But since it’s Christmas time and all, I thought I’d share a few of my favorite things you could get someone for Christmas. Yes, these are last minute gifts, but I know there are those of you out there just like me who still haven’t got anyone a gift. There are, right? Tell me I’m not alone!

Okay, let’s get this party started! Christmas gift ideas…

Songs for Saplings

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We LOVE Songs for Saplings! We’ve been listening to these fantastic CD’s for years and I cannot recommend them enough. “Songs for Saplings makes music for kids. We want them to understand who God is and what He has done, as well as what He wants your children to do and to be. Our music is adapted from scripture and from classic works meant to teach our kids the deep and wonderful things taught in the Bible.”

The music ranges from fun and upbeat to tender and beautiful. I know you will love them!

BUY HERE

Life-Coaching with Carey Bailey

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Carey is amazing. She literally changed the direction of my life by helping me to recognize some truths I had neglected to see. I am now on a different, much better trajectory because of her gentle but straight-forward help.

Go HERE to learn more about what Carey offers and to book a FREE introductory life-coaching session with her. I can almost guarantee you will adore her (and thank me for introducing you to her)!

Joel Clarkson’s new Midwinter Carols album

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We’ve been listening to Joel Clarkson’s relaxing Midwinter Carols album this month on repeat. It actually sounds like winter. I can’t explain it, but I really think you will enjoy listening to it not only during the holiday season, but through the chilly winter months. It’s perfect with hot cocoa and candles!

Get it at CD Baby HERE or iTunes HERE

My Beautiful Truth products (benefits children’s cancer research)

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My sweet friend Shelley Ballestero makes Beautiful Truth products, all-natural products with a message of hope and encouragement. But her products are about so much more. Shelley’s oldest son was diagnosed with “Osteogenetic Sarcoma (in layman’s terms, bone cancer) complicated with an extremely rare bone marrow failure syndrome–Diamond Blackfan Anemia.” Since then she and her family have been on a journey of natural healing (after chemo, her son’s tumor grew and he had to have his leg amputated above the knee). Part of that journey has been to create products with 100 percent natural and organic ingredients.

“When you buy products or donate money to The Beautiful Truth you are supporting us  through the next couple of years of a more natural approach of  medical treatments in our son’s future.” To learn more about Shelley and her family, click here.

To purchase her products, including essential oils, foot scrubs, body butters, and more, GO HERE.

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Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe

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I am just sure you know a mom out there who could use some encouragement during the little years! If so, Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe written by myself and Sally Clarkson is sure to uplift! And, great news, the Kindle version is only $2.99 this month!

To get a copy, HEAD HERE!

GIVEAWAY!

Today I’m giving away a Christmas bundle to one of you! The bundle includes:

To enter, just fill out the form below! (Email readers, click here to enter.) This giveaway ends Wednesday night (December 18th) at midnight, EST and is open to continental U.S. only.

Good “luck”!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Love, Sarah Mae

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My Dream of Writing in a Cabin in the Woods with a Dog and a Fireplace (It Came True!)

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I have always dreamed of being able to write in a cabin in the woods with a fireplace and a dog.

You can read a bit more about that dream here.

Well friends, my dream came true. I had the privilege of spending a glorious weekend working on my book at the Furnace Hills Bed & Breakfast. And ya’ll, it was perfect.

The owners, Liz and Ben, were absolutely gracious and wonderful. They let me take over their Bed & Breakfast in exchange for me to write something up about their sweet home. Well I can tell you, I wholeheartedly recommend the Furnace Hills Bed & Breakfast in Denver, PA. The place is cozy, unassuming, and completely charming. If you’re a writer you will especially love Furnace Hills as it provides the perfect writing environment. You can write in your bedroom, on the couch in front of the furnace, or in the cozy nook on the indoor balcony. Coffee is always available because they have mugs and a Keurig right outside your bedroom door (or just a few steps away). And the bedrooms…simply delightful. Wood floors, a window that overlooks the woods, and a door leading right outside. I had a little electric heater for the cold nights, but I easily stayed warm as I burrowed under the layers of thick blankets and soft sheets. In the morning I took a shower and wouldn’t you know, they even had a built in heater in the bathroom you could turn on to stay toasty.

And the best part I bet, which I actually missed, was Liz’s home-cooking! She wasn’t there when I stayed (she is normally there for guests), and so on top of all the goodness that I experienced, you would also have some delicious food!

Friends, truly, this place is a gift. I am completely taken with it and am already planning my next trip.

If you’re looking for a romantic getaway, a writer’s retreat, or just a comfy place to stay while you’re in PA, do yourself a favor and plan a trip to the Furnace Hills Bed & Breakfast.

Want to know more? Check out their website! And don’t forget to take a peek at their specials!

Dreaming of my next visit,

Sarah Mae

Related: When You Don’t Have a Cabin or a Dog…But Are Still Called to Write

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How to Enjoy Life When You Feel So Guilty (Or, How I’ve Kicked Guilt to the Curb)

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I used to feel guilty all the time.

Mainly, mother guilt.

But I’ve had wife guilt, house-cleaning guilt, homeschooling guilt, eating guilt, and a slew of other “guilts”, if you will. In fact, I would say that for most of my adult years I’ve lived in a perpetual state of guilt. The, “I’m-not-doing-enough, I-keep-failing, I’ll-never-get-it-together” kinds of guilt.

It’s a plague, really.

A plague I have not only allowed, but invited.

I’ve let the guilt in to do it’s dirty work, to make me feel worthless, to keep me down; to keep me looking down instead of up.

Up.

And there it is, the trick of that slimy, slithering devil, always tempting us, teasing us, encouraging us want to look down, down, down. Down to our weaknesses. Down to our struggles. And right on Down to him. He wants us bent in his direction, not free and wide-open, head back, gazing up.

Oh sure, there is a built-in guilt that is good and of God and that shows us the way when we forget His goodness and we try out our own…our own way. But I’m talking about the guilt of constant self-critique, of always feeling like a mess, like a wreck, like a fraud. Like someone who lives in fear that she will damage her children and will never get intimacy right or who still has clothes piled up in crevices of her bedroom.

And all may be so, but that is not the place for guilt. That is human, and personality and quirks and bents and strengths and weaknesses wrapped up in a flesh that will struggle until that glorious day when the struggle will be gone.

Be free.

You’re never going to get “it” right on this earth, except the right that accepts the pure, wondrous grace of God…and keeps walking by faith, looking…

up.

Keep your eyes on Him, sisters. Let go of that guilt so you can really start living. You’re not meant to wear those guilt shackles. You’re meant to live free.

He gives the freedom, and it’s the only real kind.

Now go! No more guilt for living out your human. You’ve got a God who is willing to live inside you, to guide you and comfort you, and He is perfect. Perfect intertwined with human…intertwined with you (if you are in relationship Him). God, He is so kind.

So look up, be free, and

live.

Love, Sarah Mae

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