When I first stumbled across Kristen Welch's blog, We Are That Family, a couple of years ago, I knew I had found a keeper. She had just released her first book, Rhinestone Jesus, and I was immediately drawn to her story. On a Compassion International blogger's trip to Kenya in 2010, she saw things she couldn't un-see, and when she returned home to Texas she knew she had to do something about it. So she, along with her husband Terrell, founded Mercy House to give women in the most unimaginable circumstances a hand up and a way out. Kristen's blog offers a behind the scenes look at her work as well as inspiration and encouragement for parents.
Even though I don't know Kristen personally, I feel like I know her through her writing, and she's so open and honest that I keep coming back for more. She's recently (like just this week) released her second book, Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World, and I was lucky enough to get an advance copy. She's quick to point out that she's not a parenting expert, but she is a parent to three kids, and the book is a direct reflection of her family's experiences, struggles, and little victories along the way to a lifestyle of gratitude.
I really enjoyed the book and would recommend it for a few reasons:
Reading Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World feels like sharing a cup of coffee with a good friend. The advice comes straight from the parenting trenches, and as someone who is trying really hard to raise two little girls to be grateful young ladies, I appreciate words of wisdom from another mom who has traveled the same road.
Kristen offers practical tips and age-specific strategies for instilling gratitude. She covers everything from the pressures that teens face in our selfie-obsessed society to giving little ones responsibility with chores. And that's just in the book itself. There are also helpful appendices like a cell phone contract for older children and the Christian Parent Manifesto, as well as a list of recommended resources.
It reminded me that we're not alone in this. Sometimes I look at the world around me and wonder if everyone else is crazy or if it's just me. Even when I know we've made the right choice, I feel guilty for telling my children no when it seems like all the other parents around us are saying yes. I loved these words from Kristen:
I don't know about you, but I don't want to fall into that trap. I want my children to grow up with eyes wide open. I want them to recognize how tremendously they have been blessed. I want that knowledge to foster gratitude within their hearts. And I want that gratitude to move them to serve others. I want it for our whole family.
The nitty gritty details: Earn up to three entries by (1) Leaving a comment on this blog post, (2) Following @leslieannjones on twitter, and (3) Subscribing to the LAJ newsletter. Contest closes January 31 at 11:59 pm. Winner will be notified by e-mail within 48 hours of the contest closing.
Good luck! Until next time, grace and peace.
More Chances to Win!
I'm not the only one sponsoring a giveaway of Raising Grateful Kids this week. Here are a few other places you can enter for a chance to win!