Friday, January 30, 2015

Shelf Check: The Nesting Place by Myquillyn Smith

Book Description: This (in)courage Dayspring writer, with a strong endorsement from Ann Voskamp, will appeal to women who love God and want their home to be a place of welcome to all.

Popular blogger and self-taught decorator Myquillyn Smith realized years ago that although immaculate-looking homes are pretty in pictures, when she's actually in one, she's not comfortable. Instead, she's worried that she'll spill her drink on the rug, or she's wondering if it's okay to move the pillow out of the way to sit down.

This stay-at-home mom in stretchy yoga pants with expired milk in her refrigerator has stumbled upon the secret to decorating for real people, and it has nothing to do with trying to convince others of our perfection. Myquillyn believes that there is beauty in imperfection, in the lived-in and loved-on and used-just-about-up. Imperfections put people at ease and free us to take risks and create the home-and the life-we've always wanted.

Myquillyn's warm and insightful words are paired with her own gorgeous four-color photos and creative, easy ideas for arranging, decorating, and building a home that welcomes everyone. Readers will learn how to create their own style-without breaking the bank or stressing over comparisons.

Book Review: I should start off by telling you I am no interior decorator. If you've been to my house you are probably painfully aware of that. I decorate in basics. Think functional necessities. I have a few pictures in frames around the house. Most of them people gave me and I just hung them somewhere. Classy, I know. I've looked in magazines before and everything is so neat and put together. I'm a bit of a perfectionist so I knew those pictures were way out of my league. I'm pretty low maintenance when it comes to just about everything.

That's what I loved about Myquillyn's book! She says, it doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful. All through her book you'll see beautiful pictures of her home. It's lived in and imperfect. She walks you through the smallest tweaks of making your home beautiful. I generally need inspiration to start from. Her book does just that. From throw pillows and knick knacks to gallery walls and lighting fixtures. Decorate with things you love! Make it home. This book is perfect for those who are decorating pros and those are not. You'll get insight along the way on how Myquillyn started and tips! 

*BookLook Bloggers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.The opinions are my own.*

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Happy January!

We hope you had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year (so far)! As a family we are really excited about 2015! Last year ended with us really busy! We got back from Africa in August. Then, in October we headed to South America. Joe started his seminary extension courses. We started a new program about missions for kids at our church. 

In December, Kendall made and sold crosses to raise money for Mercy House Kenya. We heard there was a
12 year old
that was pregnant in their program. I shared this with Kendall and she wanted to help! In one month she raised $186! Thank you to everyone who helped her! You can read more about it here:

January has been busy so far too! We started a new homeschool program that Kendall loves! Then yesterday, Joe started his regular seminary courses again at the Baptist College of Florida.

God has continued to work and provide us with opportunities to serve Him in different parts of the world.This year we will be taking part in three mission trips so far! As a family we will head to Ecuador in April and June each for a week at a time. The other  trip will be Joe going to Indonesia. We are asking for you to partner with us in prayer and if God leads for support. These trips will be focusing on sharing the Gospel, preaching, teaching, construction, and building up Kingdom workers for further ministry. 

Thank you for continuing to be a part of our adventure with God!

In HIs Love,

Joe, Jenn, and Kendall Hennis

Contact us:                                                    

Donations can be sent to:
Crosswalk Community Church
77 N. Carpenter Rd.
Titusville, Fl 32796
Please put Hennis Family Missions in the memo line.  

Monday, January 5, 2015

looking back

I can still remember everything about this day seven years ago...

Getting up and having my makeup and hair done. Getting ready with all my girls in the choir room of the church. I was three months pregnant. My dress was too big from all the weight I lost from morning sickness. I forgot my wedding jewelry. My girls looked beautiful. I was sick and had no voice to say my vows with.

 My soon-to-be father-in-law showed up in a tux with a bow tie on the advice of his son. The rest of the guys had on suits and ties. The best man had a black eye from being sucker punched the previous weekend. My dad helped the groom and groomsmen with their boutonnieres. My groom showed up hung over.

We were an attractive looking motley crew.

Joe cried when he saw me.

I cried the whole way down the aisle with my dad holding my arm.

Joe carried me over the threshold when we got back to our house for the reception.

I threatened him with the cake cutter if he smashed cake in my face.

The next year proved to be hell on Earth. We barely made it through alive, literally. During that year we welcomed our daughter into the world, Joe struggled with addiction, and our marriage was a hot mess. We thought we knew what we were doing. We were just kids.

We accepted Jesus into our hearts and our lives were flipped upside down.

For the first time we understood what love was.

God brought beauty from ashes.

Today, we celebrate seven years of marriage.

We praise Him for His faithfulness.

It is worth fighting for.

Happy Anniversary my love!

Thank you Lord!

"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." Lamentations 3:22-23

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Fair Trade Friday: Box #4

As you know... The first Friday of every month is one of my favorite days! That's the day my Fair Trade Friday box arrives! To learn more about these boxes check them out here

In each box now comes this fancy card! I love that they note how many women the box employed! This month all of my items were from India with the exception of the bag from Mercy Covers! 

This bag is from Mercy Covers. Mercy Covers is an outreach of the St. Bryce Missions that provides skills training, personal finance management, education, discipleship, and meaningful work for women in rural Costa Rica.

The is bracelet is called "Pharoah's cuff". It's from Mata Traders. I couldn't find the exact bracelet. You can read about Mata Traders and how they came to be here

This is the needlepoint necklace in black also from Mata Traders. I found one similar here

This market tote is from JOYN. You can read about their mission here and find a tote for yourself here

I also got a lanyard from JOYN. Which is currently on my keyring. You can find them here

I loved all of my items. I love that fair trade goods get shipped to me every month. I'm seriously in love. I get to help empower women around the world and Fair Trade Friday helps me do that. They take all the guess work out of it! So much fun! 

Thanks for loving mercy with me!

In His Love,

P.S. I also won this from Mercy House Kenya. Some of you asked where the items were from so here you go. 

1 & 2. Crocheted Pot holders from The Refugee Project.
3. Purple Coin Purse from Mata Traders.
4. Clutch from carry 117.
5. Headband from World Finds.
6. Necklace from Mercy House Kenya.
7. Blue Maasai bangle from Global Crafts. (Kenya Collection)
8. Beaded silver plated bracelet from Global Crafts. (Kenya Collection)
9. Recycled earrings from the Takataka Collection. 
10. Lanyard from Joyn
11. Garden Party cuff from Mata Traders.
12. Chevron "Your Yes Matters" Farm House Tote from Mercy House Kenya.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Fair Trade Friday: Box #3

Oh man, the first Friday of the month is one of my very favorite days. Like for real. It all has to do with Fair Trade Friday. It's a beautiful thing. Helping to empower women all over the world. The thing I love most is that my six year old looks forward to it too. She loves opening all the "presents". Together we read about all of the items in our box. Then sit down and research about where they are from. I love that time with her. You can also read about my first two Fair Trade Friday boxes here and here. So without further adieu...

This bag is from Friends of Mercy in Kenya. This fair trade reusable gift bag provides meals for one day. 

Next was a window wallet that was made in Rajpur, India by JOYN.  I love that the name of all the people who worked on this are right their on the tag! At the heart of JOYN lies a desire to see lives changed. To see those crippled by poverty and hardship dance for joy. To do this, JOYN has partnered with a nonprofit called JoyCorps to provide employees with not only steady jobs and a good work environment, but a daily meal plan, education for their children, English and vocational training, and medical care. Lives are changing as a result. JOYN continues to sell beautiful products handmade by artisans who do 100 percent of the work, from weaving to block printing to stitching. This brings JOY to those who make the products, and JOY to those who buy them.

The prayer bracelet and the hand crocheted fingerless gloves are from the Refugee Project in Houston, Texas. The United Nations has relocated more than 50,000 refugees to Houston, Texas, due to religious and ethnic persecution. The Refugee Project exists to empower refugee women by teaching them skills and product creation.

Kendall loves to be a part of it...

The next item was a beaded bracelet from Kenya by Global Crafts. Their mission is to offer income-generating opportunities to craftspeople in developing countries by following fair trade practices including paying in advance at least the market price for items, ensuring that craftspeople receive payment, and ensuring that the craftspeople work in fair working conditions. They work directly with artisans, craftspeople, and producer groups to achieve these goals and hopefully help improve the lives of some of the people with whom we share this planet.

The last item was our favorite! It's a Christmas ornament made out of paper beads from Nicaragua. It was made by the Bead Amigas. The Bead Amigas empower Nicaraguan women to create a better future for their families through art, education, and entrepreneurship. 100% of net proceeds from sales of these recycled paper beads are returned to their village in fair wages, training, and community development projects. They believe that the mutual exchange between women of different cultures, classes, and countries working for a common cause can change the world. 

Kendall already put ours on the tree! 

In one package we got items from Kenya, India, Nicaragua, and refugees from Burma, Bhutan, Nepal, and Thailand in Texas. I especially love getting to pray for each of the women who made these. It's an easy way to love and support women in other countries. You can join in on the fun here! Today there is no wait list! 

Thanks for loving mercy with me! 

In His Love, 

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Saying Yes Changed Everything

We were in the front of a little church in Nsongwe Village praying for women during a women's conference. All of a sudden, one of my friends grabbed me, honestly I thought she was coming in for a hug, but she wasn't. She held me tight and whispered in my ear, "Your yes matters." She went on to say that because of my yes others would come to know Jesus and work on their faith. I was startled to say the least. How could she have known I had just been reading that very same phrase in Rhinestone Jesus? We weren't even Facebook friends yet! After that I just balled like a baby. I love how Jesus works. When you say yes to Jesus, He just trickles into every aspect of your life.

Saying yes to Jesus changed everything for me. When I said yes my life was in shambles. My husband was on his way to prison. I was a new wife, a new mom, and newly living with my mom. This was not exactly how I pictured my life going down. I remember kneeling at the end of my bed after putting my baby girl to sleep. I just laid it all out for God and the mess I was in. I asked Him to come into my life and everything changed.

Read more at We Are That Family!