Mothering from Scratch: Book Review and Giveaway


My first year as a mother was one of the most difficult years of my life.

Before I discovered I was expecting our first child, my husband and I moved over 2,000 miles away from both of our families. After coming home from the hospital I tried to jump into my role as a new mom with confidence, but loneliness, depression and isolation sapped the life out of me.

With time, God used the support of other women and a loving church to bring me to a place of hope, but I wish I’d had a book like Mothering From Scratch during those difficult months. Melinda Means and Kathy Helgemo breathe life into the soul of this weary mom with their words and let me know I am not alone.

The authors begin the book by describing their own struggles with motherhood and the solutions which didn’t work for either of them. One of the traps many moms often fall into is comparison. Melinda and Kathy show with grace and truth how comparison will only lead to feelings of inadequacy and failure, and will not solve any of the problems we face as moms.

New motherhood requires and new formula, and discovering this truth frees us to be the moms God created us to be.

Another area of motherhood the authors address is balancing our role as a mom with pursuing our dreams. Many times as women we think if we do not pursue a goal right away, we will miss our opportunity and never have another chance to do so. Melinda and Kathy talk about the live-giving truth that our dreams do not have an expiration date, and how often we have to put our aspirations on hold to address the needs of our family, especially when our children are young and demand more of our attention.

If God placed a dream within our hearts, he will be faithful to see it through in his time. Doing so does not require us to neglect our families or assume an all-or-nothing mentality.

When we’re in the trenches of motherhood, one of the most vital choices we can make is to seek God’s guidance through prayer, time in the Word and the help of the Holy Spirit. The writers discuss the importance of intentionally carving time into our busy schedules to spend with God and listen for his promptings when making important decisions. Often, our lives become so filled with good, but distracting things that we cannot hear his still small voice. Finding a quiet space, even if for a very short amount of time, can help us become more in tune with his will.

Mothering is a journey where we are constantly discovering what works and what doesn’t, and there will be seasons where we have to readjust our methods as our kids become more independent and move into new phases of life. Being flexible and willing to change is key. Seeking God’s guidance is essential.

If you are a mom at any stage of the mothering journey, I would highly recommend this book. These writers will take your hand and show you that with time, effort, and a heaping spoonful of grace, you can thrive in this God-given assignment.


As a personal thank you to my readers, I am giving away a copy of Mothering from Scratch. To enter the drawing, simply post a comment in the section below. To be entered a second time, share this post on Facebook, Twitter or Google+ and let me know you’ve done so in your comment. I will announce the winner on Thursday, April 30th. U.S. Residents only please.


14 thoughts on “Mothering from Scratch: Book Review and Giveaway

  1. This is so true, Abby! And it’s great to know we don’t travel this road of motherhood alone! I remember days in the beginning thinking… I’m never going to have a full nights sleep again… I’m never going to eat a meal without interruption… but alas it happens and that first full night’s sleep is a dream come true… and sometimes a terror thinking “what’s wrong?” “How did I do that?” “Is my child still alive?” — Yes, sometimes I would jump to some crazy conclusions! 🙂

    I love the internet and the connections we can take part in. Even though we may feel alone, we are not! 🙂 Thanks for the encouragement!


    • I agree, Rachel. I have made so many connections online and through blogging which have been such an encouragement to me. I’m so glad I con’t have to walk this road alone. Thanks for your support, friend! 🙂


  2. This sounds like a great book! Thanks for sharing it here. I love your perspective on the journey all mothers go through and the biggest lesson we all must learn: “Being flexible and willing to change is key. Seeking God’s guidance is essential.” Amen! Loved your message here.


  3. That sounds like a helpful book! I’m not a mom yet (one of these days!!), but I have worked with kids a lot as a teacher and childcare worker at church. It’s helpful to hear that you can’t just do one thing that will always work…you have to keep hearing from God and growing along with the children (I’ve experienced this a bit with teaching.)
    Thanks for sharing!


  4. I always enjoy book reviews, and you’re encouraging me today with the thought that my dreams don’t have an expiration date. I can work on them one step at a time as I live out my priority of investing in my family. Blessings to you as a mom, friend. God is using you to encourage many!


    • I was encouraged by the writers saying that too, Betsy. Sometimes I fall into thinking those dreams do have an expiration date, but we serve a mighty God who gives us a time and season for everything. Thank you so much for your continual encouragement on this journey, friend.


  5. Abby,
    I like what the authors have to say about your dreams not having an expiration date. I felt like I had to write when my kids were younger or I’d lose my skills. I found that very challenging so I don’t know how you do it??? So then two years ago, at age 52, I was sidelined with a complex surgery and my blog was born. God was just giving me years of fodder to write about lol, but no, dreams do not expire thankfully!
    Bev xx


  6. I love these to ladies that wrote the book. I been following them when I can on face book. I keep telling myself to get the book. We do need mentors on this journey of mothering. We do need to be a community and help each other remember that God has great plans in mind for us and our kids. I will share this post. I know so many moms would be encouraged by this. Thanks Abby for caring about the hearts and well-being of Moms.


  7. Thanks Abby! I need all the help I can get. I think sometimes I need to be more flexible. I am very formula driven in a way. Sounds like a great book for me. Thank you for reviewing it and putting it on my radar! Thanks for being a head cheerleader with Purposeful Faith!


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