This post is part of the Atlas Girl Blog Tour which I am delighted to be a part of along with hundreds of inspiring bloggers. To learn more and join us, CLICK HERE
When you think back to your favourite childhood summer memories can you pinpoint one particular summer as your favourite? I certainly can. I was 14 years old, and it was the best summer of my young life. To this day nothing more can be said but "remember that summer at the lake?" and my Mom and I both smile.
My parents had split up only a few months prior, and it was just my Mom and I at home, my two sisters both having left home years prior. We decided at the beginning of the summer to spend as much time as we possibly could at the lake. We returned home for only a day or two at a time to do laundry and restock our food supplies and loonies so we could shower. We weren't overly concerned with these things as we could easily run to Barrhead for anything we needed while we were there - the local Co-op had everything except for our favourite wieners, which we probably ate our weight in during those two months. The wieners that Chris is so thankful they don't sell anymore because he found it so gross that I ate them cold, straight out of the fridge.
We both found community there, at the lake. I had a group of friends that spent just about as much time there. We would walk around and around, complaining of nothing to do, and Erin and I would spend hours suntanning in the middle of the old baseball diamond, or on the dock. We sat on the playground equipment and talked, and we ate way too many marshmallows sitting around the fire. Once it got to be nighttime I would check in with Mom who was also spending time with her friends, and with my Auntie. We had walkie talkies, but she still wanted to see my face at least once an hour.
During the hot days we listened to loud music as we tackled small projects around the trailer and on our lot. Mom blasting Sandy Posey, and me, Eminem. I was only allowed to play it loudly during the week when there weren't as many people around to offend with the lyrics. On the hottest of days Mom would let me drink Mike's Hard Lemonade, but only if I put it into a tall glass with ice so that the other Mom's would think it was only pop. We played crib on the rainy days, and giggled as we would run up to the washroom together, hand in hand under an umbrella. We would read together in bed, eating chips and Hawkins cheetoes, and we would talk about everything.
We both knew that life was going to change in a matter of weeks- me in high school, and Mom working full time for the first time in more than 20 years. It was a sacred time, and we both knew it and treated it as such. We knew that no matter how life changed, no matter how busy life would get with work, school and boyfriends, we would always have that summer at the lake.
For those two months, it was home.
Emily Wierenga is an author that lives in Neerlandia, AB- a small little Dutch Hamlet right beside Barrhead- minutes away from the lake. It seemed only fitting that my post today be centred around the thing we have in common.
I'm still waiting for the day when I meet Emily in person, but I consider her a dear friend. I came across her blog just over a year ago, and immediately found her on Facebook and sent her a message saying hello, wondering if we were possibly related (seeing as I am related to approximately 50% of Barrhead's population- the birthplace of both my parents) It turns out we are not blood related, but I still feel such a kinship to her. And then there was that time I had my Mom bring her a pie, because my spirit was grieving for her hurting heart, and apple pies aid in the mending of all kinds of hurts.
The Lord uses her writings in my life on a constant basis, and I always look forward to a new blog post. Imagine my excitement when she informed me that she had a new book coming out and invited me to join her blog tour.
To say it is an honour, is a drastic understatement.
Atlas Girl is a beautifully written memoir of Emily's life. She weaves the story of her life and travels together in beautiful, eloquent prose that is a pleasure to read. She traveled the world in search of faith and home and this book takes the reader on the emotional journey with her. We are invited to follow as she fights through an eating disorder, a grandmother that commits suicide, a mother with brain cancer and through it all, how her relationship with God is tested again and again. It is no surprise that just like with her marriage, she comes out stronger and more passionate than ever. Emily allows you to see yourself in her story- to find your own pursuit.
Messy. Beautiful. Inspiring. Grab your copy here
I am so excited to give away a copy of this amazing book. There are 3 ways to enter to win. If you do all 3 things your name can be entered a total of 5 times, and I will do a random draw on Friday, July 11th.
1. Comment below, telling me what your favourite summer memory was
2. Like Gracefully Falling Down on Facebook (if you already do, comment as such on the Facebook post)
3. Share the Facebook post. (This will enter your name THREE times!)
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Thanks for stopping by :)