Welcome to Domestic by Design! If this is your first time visiting, please start here. I’ve been offering giveaways all week which are open for entry until 12am Sunday. You can check them out in Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday’s posts. Thanks for stopping by!
While this might be the last day of giveaways, I hope it won’t be your last day around this place. I wanted this week to be an introduction to the blog and other great people that I hope you’ll support. Speaking of supporting, how about a hearty round of keyboard tapping for my blog designer, Katie, of Flibby Pie Design. Didn’t she do beautiful work? I am so pleased with how everything turned out and she was so patient with a fickle mama.
On to today’s guest and sponsor of our last giveaway. I went to a small college eight hours away from home and experienced *major* culture shock. Here I was, a “yankee” who grew up 25 minutes outside DC (“downtown” to us) who migrated down to a very small east Tennessee town where everyone had (what seemed to me) thick southern accents. I felt like I was a million miles from home.
I was so blessed, however, to live on a hall that had a group of girls that instantly connected and became known as the “2nd West” gang. Sara was one of them. From the area, she was one (of a few) that kept me in line when I began teasing about country accents by reminding me that I was the only one that didn’t have one. I’ve asked her to share a little about her blog and her Etsy shop. She also offered a gift from her shop that is just in time for cool weather. But you have to wait until the end to find out what it is.
Like many other bloggers, I started Happy Brown House as a way to share our everyday life with out of town family and to chronicle our memories. Before long, I was sharing favorite recipes, craft tutorials, and Mommy & Me Moments. What once seemed like a hobby has grown into more of a ministry, now that I’m writing monthly for The M.O.B. Society–a Christian blog devoted to encouraging moms of boys, written by moms of boys. I have another blog project that I’d like to start working on, but I’m still seeking God’s direction in that area.
My Etsy shop, Stitches by Sara, is a way for me to help contribute to our family budget and feed my need to create. I sell monogrammed gifts and boutique accessories—market totes, coffee cozies, crayon rolls, bibs, burp cloths, birthday shirts, pillowcase dresses and more! I find inspiration everywhere, especially while roaming the aisles of my local fabric shop.
Before staying home with Jonah (3 years old), I was a Kindergarten teacher in an inner-city school for 5 years. I was passionate about my students and felt like I was called to teach there. I even pursued my Masters degree in Urban Education. To be honest, I felt like I would continue teaching even after my son was born. Once Jonah arrived, God instantly turned my heart towards home—it was as if a light switch had been flipped. I had to teach one last year before we were financially able for me to stay home. It was a very long year, filled with heartache for me. I desperately longed to be home, but felt a responsibility to my teaching duties. I also had doubts that we could make it financially on one income. One Sunday night, as I lay crying in bed mourning the end of the weekend, my husband said the most freeing thing to me, “Whatever it takes.” Needless to say, I turned in my resignation the next day. It was then, when I truly surrendered my job to the Lord, I felt at peace. And just because God likes to show-off every once in a while and reassure us that He WILL provide for our every need…He provided a brand new front-facing car seat for FREE, an upcoming expense….the day I turned in my resignation. Oh, how He loves us!
I asked Sara to share what one of her biggest struggles and biggest encouragements as a mom has been. When you’re a mom, there are no days off. No sick days. No days to sleep in and be carefree. It seems like such a simple thing, but I crave time alone to recharge…and use the restroom without an audience. God has placed some wonderful mentors in my life. Women who are real with me and show Jesus to me in ways I could never imagine before. One of my favorite verses at the moment is Ephesians 3:20.
The Sara I knew in college was one who genuinely loved the Lord and sought after Him with all her heart. It has encouraged me, after reconnecting several years later to see a heart that still desires to keep Him as her highest treasure. I know you’ll be encouraged as you visit her blog.
Sara has offered a monogrammed coffee cozy for a reader today! Just in time for the cooler weather and your favorite hot drink. And, to go along with it, you will also receive a half pound of the Holiday Tea Collection from The Bulk Herb Store (my favorite resource for all things herbal). A generous gift from them worth nearly $30!
Once again, just enter below and please visit Sara’s shop! She has so many cute products and they make great gifts!!
And don’t forget that Monday starts our series, 12 Steps to a Nourishing Diet. I’ll also announce all giveaway winners. Entry for all ends tomorrow night at midnight!