Joes knows Coconut Cookies!
I've always loved coconut and I'm thrilled that
coconut love is now quite the trend so coconut stuff is everywhere!
These little gems from TJs are no exception.
They are crispy and not overly sweet.
They are great with tea, dipped in chocolate, or on their own.
A little coconut treat from France shouldn't be missed!
And the quilt I displayed them on, well that couldn't be missed either!
I found it at a thrift shop in Seattle for $6.99! SCORE!
And now onto a little update of my spotty blogging last week.
It was a big week in our home as I mentioned here.
But it wasn't just the start of homeschooling for the Newquists that made it a big week.
I also got to speak to a group of Moms on Wednesday and share my story of anxiety.
When my nightmare with anxiety began 2 years ago, I had just stepped out on my blog and announced that I wanted to pursue what I believe God has given me a passion and gift for - speaking and teaching.
Anxiety took that step of faith and paralyzed it.
I had 8 offers to speak that following year. 8 opportunities that I never got to respond to. 8 opportunities that I could have never accepted because I was far too sick to even leave the house.
But God has started His beautiful redemption process.
Earlier this year I got to speak to a group of women and it was my first time sharing since my anxiety journey began. I was extremely rusty and I'm thankful for their graciousness because I learned a lot that day - like trying to recap 2 years into 35 minutes is impossible!!!
Well, last week I got another chance to speak to a difference group of women, and this time I was more prepared.
Their theme for the year is "connections" and at their kick-off meeting I talked about connecting with one another as women and mothers and how the key ingredient is vulnerability.
As I arrived at the meeting, I ran into a girl I lived with briefly about 17 years ago! She commented on how cute I looked and so "put together."
"Wait until I speak," I told her!
I shared candidly about my miscarriage and battle with anxiety that robbed me of the better parts of almost 2 years.
As I spoke, there were some tears in the audience, but one woman in particular stood out to me. She was seated in the front and she cried the whole time I spoke.
When I finished and sat down, I felt the Lord telling me to get up and give her a hug.
I hesitated for a moment because the meeting was still going on and I would have to walk up in the front to hug this woman, but I did anyway.
"I just want to give you a hug."
She melted into my arms and tried to speak through sobs but couldn't.
I simply continued to hug her and told her that everything was going to be ok.
She was going to be fine.
She finally was able to start telling me about her battle with anxiety that she was currently in the midst of. My heart broke.
Another woman came up to me, sharing that she was almost institutionalized after suffering for 3 years. Her husband even had to quit his job to take care of her and their children.
With suffering and struggles comes great responsibility and purpose.
We must be vulnerable and share our story so that we can help others.
2 Cor. 1:3,4
"All Praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us." - The Message Translation
I'm grateful God is giving me the opportunity to share what He has brought me through and offer hope to others in the process.
I'm thrilled that I'll be speaking 4 more times this year and already have a speaking engagement booked in 2014. (you can see my updated Speaking Page here)
He is bringing many into my life that I now get to walk alongside.