The Good Home category gets it’s first house tour!

Last spring I was asked by my women’s ministry coordinator to speak at a workshop our church was holding in August. The topic was originally, “Decorating on a Dime.” After thinking about it for a few minutes something didn’t sit right with me. I wrote her back and asked if I could expand the topic. There are ENDLESS websites, FB pages and instagram feeds dedicated to thrifty decorating ideas but I feel we are missing the greater issue of hospitality in our society and especially in our churches. Using what we have dominion over for Gods glory to bless and refresh others….what does that mean? What does it look like to live and use our homes as Jesus would. Whether it be a hut, apartment or a 3500 square foot house we have a space that is ours that we choose to use or hoard. She was totally on board and the workshop became “Cultivating a heart of hospitality and creating beauty on a budget”. I’m about to open a can on this for a few posts.

It’s time to unshackle.

Maybe I’m sensitive about this topic but in its various shades this topic is on women’s minds continually and satan can pluck our mind and heart strings like a concert cellist.


Whats wrong with you, you inferior woman/wife/mom/homemaker? Can’t you whip up a gluten free, nut free, dairy free feast while homeschooling your four children and making sure they have engaged their five senses in tactile crafts using glitter, paint and markers? Haven’t you curled your freshly colored hair and put on your boyfriend jeans cuffed just so, booties, army inspired jacket, perfectly plaid flannel with your scarf tied in the latest trend? I hope you built that rustic shelving unit and spray painted some animals gold, turned your porch into a fall scene out of Martha Stewart? Did you get an hour to work out today? I hope you implemented the five steps to keeping your husband hooked when he comes home from work. (Please note some of these examples I actually do or love but NEVER EVER in the same day. Heck..week. There is NO SIN in them. It’s the pressure to accomplish them all in pin-worthy, instagram post fashion STAT)

IT. IS. MADNESS. Make the bad man stop.

I had a friend tell me once that she didn’t invite me over to her house because it wasn’t “pretty and creative enough” and she didn’t want me to see it. WHAT THE WHAT????? Man that is a slap in the face to both of us.

1- It insinuates that I show up with a clip board and check list grading my friends homes. Yeah….NO…I’m sorry you didn’t make the cut. I refuse to play, eat lunch or breath the same air in this drab home. NOT EVEN CLOSE. So hurtful.

2- It shows that she is bound mentally by a measuring stick that only a beautiful and creative home is one worth inviting others in to. What a shame, what a lie that is!

I was sad for me, I was sad for her. Something has to stop ladies! She literally put up a ten foot wall to our friendship. It wasn’t going to go any farther. What a disservice.

I was THRILLED when I saw that “She Reads Truth” started a study on October 27th on HOSPITALITY!!! Oh my word…if you are not currently doing a specific study PLEASE PLEASE click over to this one and do it! For the record I asked my friend, Sarah about doing an interview/house tour the week prior to SRT releasing this study… I’m totally pumped they are giving me some serious back bone to this topic. I mean here is a taste of some pinables. Ddddddddddaaaaaaannnnnnnggggg and Yes please!



And a small excerpt from SRT.

““In our culture, the concept of hospitality has lost much of its power and is often used in circles where we are more prone to expect a watered down piety than a serious search for authentic Christian spirituality. But still, if there is any concept worth restoring to its original depth and evocative potential, it is the concept of hospitality. It is one of the riches biblical terms that can deepen and broaden our insight in our relationships to our fellow human beings.”
Henri Nouwen, Reaching Out
The Greek word for hospitality is philoxenos. Phileo meaning “brotherly love,” and xenos for “strangers.” God’s original design for hospitality is extending ourselves in love to strangers. It’s not only hosting dinner parties on special occasions with people we know, but embracing a posture of the heart to welcome even—and especially— those we don’t.”

I happen to have some pretty savvy decorating friends in my life. Its their HOBBY. It holds their interest and is a source of creative expression and relaxation. Can I say that again? It is a source of creative expression and relaxation for them. Much like someone who paints or someone who bakes extraordinarily tasty and beautiful desserts. I do not look at a painting and scoff ” I can’t paint that well I’m not even going to hang that painting in my house because it’s better than what I could do.” My friend, Candace, is an exceptional baker; her goodies not only taste incredible they look like they are out of a magazine. Come my children’s birthday time I can sit and pout in the corner that I have horrible baking instincts or I can ask her to not bring a present but please make my child’s cupcakes for me. DO YOU SEE WHERE I’M GOING PEOPLE?

So I’ve wanted to expand the category of The Good Home by adding some house tours. I appreciate these homes because they are so interesting to look at, creative naturally/organically and I feel SO WELCOME in them. My friends also pay next to NADA for what is in their homes or they just flat out make it. Now were talking. I love that my friends have TOTALLY different taste, that’s what makes the world go round.

That’s the crux right there….THE SPIRIT OF INVITATION is on the table. Come weary and heavy Kelly and find some rest on my couch. Just scooch the toys onto the floor, kick that wrapped up dirty diaper I forgot to throw away off to the side and just rest.

The spirit of invitation say: “I want you here, I delight in your presence, I want you to feel cared for”. This invitation has happened to me in third world countries where there was not one “pin worthy” thing in the house and yet I will never forget the honor and love I received sitting on their floor or the one chair in their one room house. Nothing is more humbling than being served hot tea out of someones only glass dish and a huge dinner you know cost them their last penny and with sheer and total delight they chose to do this. The selflessness I have received in my life makes me want to cry.

And so consider this the “introduction” to these segments on The Good Home. I am thrilled to show Sarah’s uniquely decorated home that meshes her Swedish heritage, vintage treasures and her incredible talent of refurbishing furniture all rolled into one. They built this house with one thing in mind…using it for others.

Here is a small sampling of what’s on deck for next week when I roll out the full tour and her interview. If you are feeling up to it…tell me what you struggle with when it comes to using your home and resources. What holds you back or what lie to you fight?

I told Sarah she has that urban meets country hot mom down pat.






Much much more coming early next week!

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10 Comments on The Good Home category gets it’s first house tour!

  1. Dikola
    October 29, 2014 at 11:34 am (5 years ago)

    Certainly one of my favorite writings;) of yours. Ever.

    • Kelly
      October 30, 2014 at 7:01 pm (5 years ago)

      This is why I love you. Thank you for the encouragement my most specialist.

  2. Flower Patch Farmgirl
    October 29, 2014 at 11:59 am (5 years ago)

    Love your words, your heart, the Gospel truth. I love learning more about authentic hospitality. I’m all ears.


    I also love allll of those pics of her home. And her outfit!

    • Kelly
      October 30, 2014 at 7:01 pm (5 years ago)

      It’s about to get real soon friend! She is a Crossfit goddess so everything looks ridiculous on her! Jelly….

  3. Kristy
    October 29, 2014 at 12:32 pm (5 years ago)

    I know I’m going to love this series. It’s so easy for me to open my home to people I know and love well. It’s also easy to open it to people I’ve just met or meeting for the first time. But, those are all people in a safe circle. The safe circle being, from my church.

    And I can’t believe you only showed us a glimpse of her house! You had me hook, line and sinker and then….

    • Kelly
      October 30, 2014 at 7:03 pm (5 years ago)

      Hahaha! I love to dangle a carrot. It will be worth the wait, she has such a neat aesthetic! Thank you for your feedback. I totally understand extending invites to “safe” circles with more predictable agendas and topics. It’s very stretching to venture into the unknown spheres of relationship and conversation and trust the spirit to guide our words.

  4. Mary
    October 29, 2014 at 1:43 pm (5 years ago)

    Oh My Goodness! I, too, read SRT every day and the exact same quotes spoke to me. You nailed it. I wrote about the same thing…opening your home, no matter what it looks like or what you think it should look like. Then I had a friend who told me she had always been afraid to invite women over, but after reading my post she did it. And had a marvelous time. My prayer is that your words will speak to many woman. A warm smile is the best decorating tool I know of.

    • Kelly
      October 30, 2014 at 7:04 pm (5 years ago)

      Bravo Mary!! So great to see so many writing on this topic and encouraging other women to step out of the safe box of self and risk loving the unknown commodities of strangers. It’s a beautiful thing!! I seriously am loving this series on SRT, glad you are reading too.

  5. chrissy
    October 30, 2014 at 1:20 pm (5 years ago)

    oooooooo boy do we all need to hear this. i often think that i’m just not good at homemaking. i don’t craft. i’m not a great painter. i don’t really bake. i cook but not giada style. i just try. so, satan has often used that to make me feel less than in my decorating and therefore, made me feel inferior and shy away from some hospitality. ‘what would i MAKE them? i’m only good at a few recipes? what if i screw it up?’ the list goes on. but, you’re so right, kel. i know i’m good at some things that others aren’t good at. and my hope is that, people who DO walk in our door, feel a level of ease and comfort. i want them to feel at home…to share…to be real with us. we are our own worst enemies with all this stuff and satan has a field day. i love that you’re tackling this in your blog. you continue to amaze me. love you!

  6. Jen Mancier
    November 4, 2014 at 3:07 pm (5 years ago)

    Right on, Kelly. I look forward to hearing more about how we can use our homes and gifts to serve and bless others and honor God. The problem I’ve had in the past is ‘investing’ so much time and money into my home because, (I tell myself), I want it perfect so I can use it for God’s glory. But what ends up happening is that I get that expensive rug, or the perfect piece of funiture, and then I think I don’t want to invite ‘certain’ people over because they might mess it up! How messed up is that? I’m learning to find that balance of creating a place I think is asthetically pleasing but also that I’m not too attached to. Someone once said that things aren’t worth anything until you give them away. That has stuck with me and the way I esteem things that are really worth nothing. Recently I’ve challenged myself to open up my home for free art lessons each week- such a very small thing really, but a step in the right direction. I’m letting other peoples kids get messy in one of my favorite rooms. And it feels so good. :-)


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