With a huge garden, an apple tree that produced two pies this fall, and a rainbow of full canning jars in my basement, it is quite possible that my life approximates Rachel Macy Stafford’s day dreams in the Home Depot outdoor garden section.
Or could it be that my brand of rural chaos demonstrates that her book, Hands Free Life, is helpful for anyone in any context who wants to begin noticing what is truly remarkable? It’s for the woman who believes that “life is best lived with open hands, open eyes, and an open heart,” but nonetheless, struggles to embrace the sacred pauses; fails to stoop down and marvel at the color of a ripe tomato; and forgets to make time for looking straight into the eyes of a wild Morin boy before he explodes out the door into the woods in search of squirrels and adventure.
In a glorious follow-up to Hands Free Mama, Rachel, a former special-education teacher and mother of two, sets forth nine habits for overcoming distraction, living better, and loving more. Four mournful words from Rachel’s husband changed her trajectory:
“You’re never happy anymore.”
Busy-ness, fretting over inconsequential details, and the ceaseless striving for perfection and productivity had stolen her joy and had led to a lifestyle of distraction and impatience.
Each of the nine chapters of Hands Free Life is a parfait of Rachel’s family life layered with principles that emerge in which she trumpets the breath-taking virtue of “keeping track of life” — cultivating a focus on what truly matters through the implementation of mindful strategies that curb distraction and perfectionism, of principles that promote balance:
- Leave a legacy by grasping simple joys.
- Fill the spaces by seeking two fully available moments each day.
- Take the pressure off by accepting a less than perfect day.
“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”
This book was provided by Zondervan through the BookLookBloggers program in exchange for my review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Subscribe to get regular Bible studies and book reviews from Living Our Days delivered to your inbox. Just enter your e-mail address in the box at the top of this page.
I link-up with these communities on a regular basis: Looking Up, Soli Deo Gloria Connections, Inspire Me Mondays, Good Morning Mondays, Soul Survival, Testimony Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Tell His Story, Coffee for Your Heart, Live Free Thursdays, Faith-Filled Fridays, Grace and Truth, Fellowship Friday, Still Saturday, The Weekend Brew, Sunday Stillness, Faith and Fellowship, Blessing Counters, Women with Intention, Sharing His Beauty, Monday Musings, Motivate and Rejuvenate Monday, Thought Provoking Thursday, Small Wonder, Playdates with God, A Little R & R, Beloved Brews, SusanBMead, Faith Along the Way, Cozy Reading Spot, Reflect, Literacy Musing Mondays, Purposeful Faith, The Loft, Words with Winter, Rich Faith Rising, Encourage Me Monday, Tuesday Talk, What to Read Wednesday, Booknificent Thursday, Give Me Grace, Three-Word Wednesday, Word-filled Wednesdays, Faith ‘n Friends