Tag Archives: creativity

Life Creative by Wendy Speake and Kelli Stuart

Living a Creative Life {Book Review – Life Creative by Wendy Speake and Kelli Stuart)

Life Creative by Wendy Speake and Kelli Stuart

About the book (from the publisher):

Life Creative: Inspiration for Today’s Renaissance Mom by Wendy Speake and Kelli Stuart (Kregel Publications, 2016)

What was God thinking when He created you creative and then gave you children?

Creative moms often feel as though they must lay their passions down. But God had something special in mind for the creative woman during this intense season of mothering.
In this Pinterest age of handcrafted children’s parties, Instagram photos of beautifully decorated homes, and blogs filled with poetry and prose, it is clear that we are in the midst of a brand new artistic renaissance. Not one born in Italian cathedrals or Harlem jazz clubs, but rather in kitchens, nurseries, and living rooms around the world. Mothers, working in the cracks and crevices of each hectic day, are adorning the world with their gifts, and they’re showing all of us the beauty of this Life Creative.

In this book, you’ll learn:
—Why the world needs your art
—How this Life Creative begins at home
—When art can turn a profit
—Your part in this modern day Renaissance

Life Creative paints the stories of moms, just like you, who are fitting their inspired lives into the everyday, ordinary places of motherhood. Women like home decorator Melissa Michaels and jewelry designer Lisa Leonard, author Angie Smith, recording artist Ellie Holcomb, and many more.

My thoughts:

This book begins with a solid case supporting how God is the first Creator, and He created each of us to create in unique ways, too. The authors continually reiterate that every mother is a creative in her own God-given way, be it writing, crafting, baking, leading, etc. Each chapter contains personal anecdotes as well as stories of other mom creatives, and the chapters progress from acknowledging our creative nature to balancing momhood and creative work and even to what happens if that gift eventually supports your family financially. The authors are very conversational in tone and ready to affirm and encourage every reader.

I enjoyed most of what I read, though I actually found myself not fully agreeing with some of the statements and sentiments the authors share. For example, many of the ideas and suggestions seem to suggest that the mother reading will have a disposable income (to be able to drop kids off at daycare, for example) or time when kids are in public school. This, of course, isn’t the case for all families, so this may feel alienating for some readers. (But the authors do share many examples and often say it’ll look different for different moms.)

Another example, on page 32, they say: “And I’m not saying I don’t want them. I simply want me, too.” And (I think) I see what they’re saying here. We are all our individual selves before we become moms. But, I think I view it a touch differently. The change also becomes part of me. I will never not be a mom now, no matter what the future holds. And “mom” (along with “wife”) are my most favorite titles. I can’t separate being a mom from any of the rest of me now. I am Mom. But I am also a creative. I am also a writer. I am also a wonderer. These things are all as much a part of me as before. So “me” is still here while I am “Mom” because they aren’t exclusive of each other. But, just as I can’t ignore the Mom part, I also can’t ignore the creative part. It’s all part of who I am. I don’t want to separate any of those parts (though that doesn’t mean I don’t need a break from one or another part at times!); I want to grow into these parts together more fully. This does mean life looks different than pre-kids and will continue to look different as we all grow. (And I totally agree with the messy part!)

This said, every time I found a statement I possibly disagreed with, I had these kinds of reflective questions and conversations in my head. And, to me, that’s a sign of time well spent. This book allowed me to reflect on me and what that means as I try to live my life as God created me.

This book weaves creative life with living for God, a creative Himself. The stories shared about other creative moms (many whom are well-known in the Christian blogging world) are certainly inspiring. The tone of this book is graceful and welcoming. I imagine it will encourage and inspire most of its readers, as the subtitle suggests.

What encourages you as a mom to embrace your creative traits?

For more about this book and its authors, please visit the Litfuse page on this book. And enter the giveaway via clicking here or the image below! (Giveaway open through October 27th.)


Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book via Litfuse. This is an honest review, and all opinions expressed are my own.

I am an affiliate for Amazon Associates. If you click on an Amazon link and then make a purchase, I receive a small commission. This does not affect your final cost at all. Thank you for supporting this blog and my family!

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An Ode to the Mountains

An Ode to the Mountains

I might’ve mentioned here before that I love the mountains. (#understatement)

This month, at Do Not Depart, we’re looking at our Marvelous Creator and what His creation signifies to us as we study it and Him.

So, of course, I wrote about the mountains.

With good reason, though.

An Ode to the Mountains

Join me at Do Not Depart for my ode to the mountains (particularly the Appalachians) and what being in the mountains reminds me about God. I’d love to hear your favorite parts of God’s creation, too.

10 Picture Books that Inspire Creativity {undergodsmightyhand.com}

10 Picture Books that Inspire Creativity

I’m not even sure how many times I’ve saved a picture book from the library to show my husband when he returned home. Then to show my parents. Then to share online. And of course to re-read multiple times with my kids.

Picture books are an art form. And they’re not just for children.

The best picture books are enjoyed by both children and adults. Better yet, the best picture books inspire both children and adults. To grow. To change. To love. To laugh. To create.

Today, I’ll share just a few picture books that inspire creativity in both my children and myself.

10 Picture Books that Inspire Creativity {undergodsmightyhand.com}

10 Picture Books that Inspire Creativity

Ish by Peter Reynolds (Candlewick, 2004). This is by far one of my favorite picture books. I can’t not be inspired when I reread this one. My kids love the colors and the crafts that can spawn from this book.

Ish by Peter Reynolds

A Dance Like Starlight by Kristy Dempsey, Illustrated by Floyd Cooper (Philomel, 2014). So far, I’ve teared up every time I’ve read this one. A beautifully told story, this book allows every reader to envision his/her own dreams as possibilities.

A Dance like Starlight by Kristy Dempsey

Froodle by Antoinette Portis (Roaring Book Press, 2014). This quirky book exemplifies perseverance against initial criticism to one’s creative choices in a fun, silly, magnificent way using birds’ vocalizations.

Froodle by Antoinette Portis

Boy + Bot by Ame Dyckman, Illustrated by Dan Yaccarino (Knopf, 2012). Okay, so sometimes I just look for a reason to include one of Ame Dyckman’s books, but Boy +Bot fits this list, too. Boy and Bot both use creativity to help each other in this adorable friendship story.

Boy + Bot by Ame Dyckman

When the Beat Was Born: DJ Kool Herc and the Creation of Hip Hop by Laban Carrick Hill, Illustrated by Theodore Taylor (Roaring Book Press, 2013). This creative nonfiction book highlights the birth of hip hop, a genre full of creativity. I love reading “origin” stories because of the inspiration pouring out.

When the Beat was Born by Laban Carrick Hill

Rain! by Linda Ashman, Illustrated by Christian Robinson (HMH Books for Young Readers, 2013). This cute book boasts a low word count, but is not sparse on effect. Readers see creativity in perspective and outlook through two drastically different charcters.

Rain by Linda Ashman

Not A Box by Antoinette Portis (HarperCollins, 2006). This author (as evidenced by listing two of her books here) excels at inspiring ways to think “out-of-the-box.” (Ha ha. I know I’m not the only one to have made that joke here.) My kids loved flipping through this one again and again.

Not a Box by Antoinette Portis

Little Oink by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, Illustrated by Jen Corace (Chronicle, 2009). Along with Little Pea and Little Hoot, this series of books causes readers to creativity think away from stereotypes and initial judgments.

Little Oink by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

On a Beam of Light by Jennifer Berne, Illustrated by Vladimir Radunsky (Chronicle, 2013). I doubt anyone can say Einstein wasn’t creative. This picture book offers a biography of Einstein’s unique ways of thinking, learning, exploring, and solving problems.

On a Beam of Light by Jennifer Berne

Journey by Aaron Becker (Candlewick, 2013). Journey is a wordless picture book. By that fact alone, it has to be creative. And this one is. An awesome story about using creativity throughout your moments.

Journey by Aaron Becker

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” – Maya Angelou

What are your family’s favorite creativity-inspiring picture books?

This post is also linked up with Homeschool Creation’s Preschool and Kindergarten CornerTuesday TotsToddler and Preschool Moms Pinning Party, the Weekly Kids Co-opShow and Share SaturdayFree Homeschool Deals’ Ultimate Pinterest Party, and Link & Learn.

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I Can Teach My Child's Show and Share Saturday link-up

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