Friends, today is the day! After writing (and re-writing) for over two and a half years, getting on my knees a thousand times to beg God for the words He wanted me to write, and so much life change and refining, Cultivate: A Grace-Filled Guide to Growing an Intentional Life, has finally bloomed. This has been a journey of surrender and trust–more than any other time in my life. I’m grateful for so many of you who have prayed me through this journey. My prayer is that this little book will help you cultivate what matters, right where you are.
I believe that small intentional decisions add up.
I believe good things can grow out of hard things.
And I believe new life can come from what feels lifeless.
As I wrote in Cultivate, “New life starts with a tiny seed, which must let go of its shell to sprout. There is power—energy, ability, great potential—hiding in each one. The magic is already inside. You just have to cultivate it.”
Order your copy here in paperback, digital, or audio book. I was so grateful to record the audiobook in my own voice. Cultivate also includes a 10-week study guide in the paperback version and materials for small groups. I wrote this book hoping it would encourage meaningful conversations and connections with friends!
And now for something extra special: the Cultivate photo album. Here’s a peek into the journey of this book and our garden, chapter by chapter. I hope you enjoy these photographs as much as I did in putting them together for you.
Chapter 1: The orchid, Grampa Cecil, the garden covered in snow as I started writing this book, our perfectly imperfect peaches and a few peeks at Grace in the garden over the years.
Garden Company: The company we keep in the garden: Hootie, the butterflies, Grace looking out the window at the “magical trio,” and… the hornworms.
Chapter 2: Seeds sprouting and letting go of their outer shell, running a business from my house, and our Elberta peaches.
Be the Bees: Our lemon tree adventures! The day the first Meyer lemon tree box arrived, “being the bees” and pollinating the trees with a paintbrush, and enjoying some lemonade.
Chapter 3: Garden dreaming through the years and Ari making new garden beds after our season of loss.
All the Plants I’ve Killed: Our multitasking tree.
Chapter 4: Trying to dig old roots out and having to get an ATV to help us, and tilling up the hard ground of winter.
Mama Bird Knows Best: Baby birds in our front door wreath.
Chapter 5: Planting new seeds in faith, and finding out some surprising news.
U-Pick Memories: Blueberry picking at Wanda’s. I actually went to Wanda’s this weekend with Ari and the kids and brought her a book–she was so surprised and excited!
Chapter 6: Growing in the wait – our memorable garden meal with Kristin, waiting for Joshua (Ari and my mom helping with the garden), writing the Word with Grace while we waited, Joshua arrives, and six months later Sarah arrives!
Metamorphosis: A butterfly in the garden–transformed in the dark and given a new life with wings!
Chapter 7: The thick of it – our refining season fighting anxiety and hard emotions, and trying to write this book. We captured photos of the happy moments, trying to cultivate what mattered in the middle of what felt like a mess underneath. Good things grew out of that refining season!
Chapter 8: Dandelions and savoring the harvest.
Heirloom Plants: My Great-Grandmother Irene’s Jonquils.
Chapter 9: Walter, the community God grew around us, adventures in the “magical garden” at the retirement community, and our dear silver-haired friends.
Celebration: Gracie’s marigold celebrations and making our bean tee-pee!
Garden Markers: Marking our plants with the names of special friends and family.
Chapter 10: Preserving fruit and memories, our pressed flower project, and a photo of my grandparents.
The Day I Thought I Would Lose the Garden: The day we discovered some unwelcome garden company.
A New Season: Embracing the frost of winter and a collection of photos from our new season!
Thank you again to the many friends who have encouraged me on this journey–I’m celebrating you and praising Him for you today too! Order your copy of Cultivate: A Grace-Filled Guide to Growing an Intentional Life and grab sharable quotes, graphics, and screensavers from the book here.