Friday, February 5, 2016

Creating a LifeGiving Home

A photo posted by April E (@elcloudapril) on

I've been married for nearly 22 years, and have been a mother for 20 years. My husband and I have a large family. We had 9 kids in 18 years. Needless to say, life became very hectic, loud, messy, and sometimes crazy. Our baby days are over now and we only have 7 children still living at home full-time. I had already decided that 2016 needed to be a year of change in our home, of finding order, re-establishing joy and peace - a hard thing with 7 strong personalities and shared bedrooms. And then I found The LifeGiving Home: Creating a Place of Belonging and Becoming by Sally Clarkson and Sarah Clarkson.

I've actually read all of Sally Clarkson's books and I know her heart for mothers and families is full of love and grace. But even though I'd read all those books and agreed with them, that wasn't the reality I was living in. I'd lost the vision for my home - we were just trying to survive every day. And I'll confess I'd become overwhelmed and wasn't giving my full energy or heart to my homemaking. I felt unappreciated by my crowd and was letting that discouragement affect my actions.

I'd fallen into a "why bother" attitude about cooking since it seemed half the kids would complain about most meals and I rarely could make everyone happy. They'd rather eat frozen corn dogs than a steaming pot of healthy, home-made soup. So why bother expending my energy and creativity in cooking healthy meals? The kids are tearing around the house being crazy, making messes, and fighting me on chores - so why bother cleaning up every day anyway? Reading aloud isn't going to work because of all the bickering and interruptions, so why try?

Yeah - I'd fallen pretty low from the ideals I'd started with as a wife and mom. I got up every day, fed all the kids, kept them safe, made sure they did their homeschool work - but I didn't do it with joy or creative energy at all. I loved them. I hugged them. I disciplined them. I tucked them in every night. But I wasn't giving them all the life and joy and meaning in each day that I could.

Enter The LifeGiving Home. It is restoring my vision and my love for my home and my role as a wife, mom, homemaker. Sally and Sarah Clarkson share both from the heart of a wife and mother, and that of a daughter and single woman. Both are creating homes that are filled with love, beauty, and hospitality. It is a reminder that no matter where you are or what you have, you can create a home of beauty, love, joy and peace. You can bless your family, and all who enter your home, with Christ's love and a haven from the harshness of the world we live in.

So I have my mission for 2016, and my inspiration in The LifeGiving Home and The LifeGiving Home Experience. I will be gleaning from them both, all year long. Not only do I still have 7 children living at home, and a wonderful husband I appreciate - I also have children leaving the nest. I want all of them to enjoy being home, to feel love and peace in our home, and to know they are safe here. I want them to cherish our home still, and to bring their children home to visit someday. I want our home to be a legacy of faith and love and joy.

 Be inspired this year, and create your own lifegiving home.

April E.


  1. great article. Thanks for these sweet words.

  2. Thank you for sharing so honestly. I fully understand. It's good to know that each day we have a choice and new beginning. May 2016 be a productive year full of grace and beauty in your home. Blessings


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