Oh My Gracious!! It’s Time to Celebrate!!

This post has been in the making now for almost 2 months.  But little Gems went home to be with the Lord and my heart was heavy when I first began to write it.  But now – it’s time!!  Please come and celebrate with us!!

The anniversary date was May 4th, 2018 and it was the 10th anniversary of my first blog post!!  Our Place Called Simplicity has been around for TEN years!  TEN!  Can you believe it??  I seriously can’t!!  I am dumbfounded – could it really be ten years of writing?  Yes, indeed!  I wrote my first blog post on May 4th, 2008.

This calls for a big celebration!!

As I’ve mentioned before I began writing Our Place Called Simplicity as a little online journal for my family.  You know what I mean – a simple way to keep everyone up to speed with our lives and to tell our stories to my kids so they could have them for forever.

A man’s heart plans his way,
But the Lord directs his steps.  Proverbs 16:9

Unbeknownst to me our great God had an entirely different idea of exactly what He was going to do with Our Place.  And friends, I guarantee, I never ever dreamed, planned or hoped for the ministry that God decided Our Place would have.  Over the last ten years Our Place has been visited from countries all over the world!!  We’ve had over 5 million hits!! It’s been visited from over 75 countries – even a few countries I’d never even heard of!   I have received precious letters from the United States, Canada and around the world and they have brought such encouragement to my sometimes very weary soul.

I have told the Lord on many occasions that if Our Place were to ever not honor Him, please shut it down.  I write for one reason – to bring glory to Him, to encourage others to spend time with Him and to remind everyone just how astoundingly faithful our God is! He has never, ever, not even once failed me.  I have been through many rough, painful, sorrowful patches in my life but He has always, always, always been astoundingly faithful to me.

So today, as we celebrate 10 years, it seems more than appropriate that we take a little trip down Memory Lane of the last 10 years…

What has my favorite part of the last 10 years been??

My favorite part of the last 10 years…

Any guesses what my favorite part would be?? Haha! Like you would need to guess!!

Yes! Yes! Yes!!  Adding SEVEN treasures in the last 10 years to our sweet pile of 7!!

Thank you to all who have prayed, cheered, encouraged (and given!) as we’ve added the seven!

First it was Elijah and Elizabeth in December 2008

DecemberB2008 016

 DecemberJ2008 190

The first days they were home inside our little log house.  (Just 3-1/2 weeks later we lost our log home to a fire.) DecemberJ2008 196

Elijah now…IMG_1291

Elizabeth now…IMG_5494 IMG_8047

Then it was Jubilee in December 2009

JubileeJan1DSC09710DSC09712Jubilee 2

And sweet Jubilee now…cb677f6025


Then it was Ruby – September 2011


And Ruby (who continues to heal) now…IMG_8099


Then it was Nehemiah in August 2012 


And Nehemiah now…FullSizeRender-6

Then it was Johnny  in February 2016


And Johnny now…IMG_7826

and last but not least – it was Birdie on Leap Year Day of  February 2016


And Birdie now…slowly her broken little heart is healing….IMG_1856


Wow!!  It’s crazy to think it’s been 7 in 10.

Then of course you’ve watched as Emma and Dw went to Uganda for the first time in 2008, and Emma subsequently visit 12 times total before moving to Uganda permanently.


Many have prayed for Emma over the years as she moved to Uganda permanently in January 2013 where she founded and now directs The Gem Foundation.

In January 2009 many of you stopped by for the first time hearing that we had lost our little log home to a fire.  The kids and I barely escaped – it was so very traumatic!!  But prayers, tangible gifts and so much love from so many of you as we rebuilt our lives.   We were so humbled.  The outpouring of love was powerful and healing and so very incredible to be on the receiving end of it all.

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Many of you even sent verses to tuck in the walls of our new home we built on the same 3 acres not far from the little log home!

Over the years you’ve celebrated with us as four of our kids tied the knot and we gained some precious “in-loves”!!  (Abigail and Ryan were married before Our Place even began.)

Tyler and Sarah


Autumn and Karl




Graham and Savannah



Emma and Josh




Many of you cheered me on while I wrote and published two books! And many, many of you came to hug our necks as we toured the country a couple of times!!




Screen Shot 2017-07-13 at 7.57.38 AM


Many have loved meeting this miracle girl (and all our other treasures) up close!!


Through the highs and the lows – through every speck of it – I’ve declared the astounding faithfulness of God! Because friends – He is.  He is my best friend, my confidant, my protector, my healer and my precious Savior.

After the 4th I will announce a really fun contest (with a prize) that all can play to celebrate the last 10 years!  In the meantime – celebrate with me today! Our astoundingly faithful God has been so very beautiful to all of us!

10 thoughts on “Oh My Gracious!! It’s Time to Celebrate!!

  1. Your posts on hearing the Lord were my favorites outside of your kids’ homecomings!!
    Congratulations and Praise God for your ten years!

  2. I’m thankful for your words and how you have drawn me closer to God and taught me things that have helped sustain me and encouraged me to live my one life in a way that will outlive myself. Thank you for your mentorship through this blog!

  3. Wow, I too am surprised to see that so much time has passed since I first visited your blog. I, like many others, first came by when I read about the log house fire. I also read the story of Isaiah’s adoption, then I followed Emma’s blog and story and her love for Uganda, then I read and still follow Abby’s work on Instagram, and i.ve read the story of her and ryan’s adoption. And all the stories of your wonderful family.
    Ok, I sound like a stalker, I know. But your blog and your writing *does* show God’s faithfulness and love, and it’s like a balm to read this reminder on your blog.
    Here’s to many more years of documenting God’s wonderful provision!

  4. Congratulations!! And thank you for singling me out with dreidels all those years ago so we became friends. 😉

  5. To God Be The Glory! You and your family have been incredible tools in His Hands! (Romans 6:13, TLB)

  6. I’ve been a reader for most of the 10 years, and continue to be inspired by your precious family.

    Thank you for sharing your family and God’s faithfulness with all of us.

    Love from South TX

  7. Hi Linny, I have been following your blog for several years now. I love your stories of inspiration! Even though I have been reading the blog and you have included a few posts such as this one, I still can’t figure out exactly how your family is made up. Perhaps this is intentional to protect and respect privacy, but if you are able, I would love a run down of your kids from biggest to littlest, spouses and grandkids (or even just who has the grandkids). Some of the kids who are featured often I know very well, but I feel like you have other kids that I don’t know about at all. It is none of my business, of course, but I feel like you are a friend and good ole’ human curiosity is getting the best of me!

    1. Thank you for asking MayLynne, but yes, I write vaguely about some of the adult kids due to privacy reasons. it is intentional and necessary. I willingly share my family, but there are some things that just have to remain more of a mystery due to the way things are.

      No doubt, human curiosity is tormenting, but suffice it to say, my kids love me, they appreciate my blog, but life has taken them to “places” that require some anonymity. Thank you for understanding and loving us anyway!!

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