Crafternoon with findings from The Refindery

The Refindery

I have a penchant for trolling shops and other emporia that stock old timey estate sale things. Bureau drawer knobs and big slabs of slate. The things I could do with them! The junky things I can make using mod podge and dryer lint!

My personal kryptonite are planks of wood, though. I love a good solid piece of wood that cries out to me, Paint me! Gold leaf me! Take me home!

The Refindery
The Refindery

My virgin visit to Chattanooga’s The Refindery afforded me the ultimate souvenir. A wood plank that was…you might want to sit down for this and grab a paper bag in which to breathe…hand-carved. I know. It was like winning Powerball or giving birth to an heir to the throne and not having to tell the media right away. At least, that’s how I imagine it would feel. Finding your handcut wood and the salesperson at The Refindery saying, “How ’bout $12?”

Boom. Sale. Done and done.

She said it was probably a remnant from someone’s fireplace which was lovely to think about this being a literal part of someone’s hearth.

Here is what happened when I got home:

1. Sanded wood to clean off any excess crud.

The Refindery

2. Painted with acrylic paint and then covered bottom half with chalkboard paint.

The Refindery

3. Allowed to dry and posted some kendraspondence in chalk on my new fireplace fixture.


I think it looks quite fetching and will definitely return to The Refindery for more woodchips from the Planet Krypton.

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Keeping secrets

I figure now, in the season where we are reminded how the desire of ages was fulfilled in a cold barn long ago, that I can tell y’all about a little desire of my own that has been fulfilled.

After a long road of trying to find a home for my memoir on our intercultural family, I’m thrilled to pieces that one Kalos Press has made an offer on my book and is eager to welcome “Mixed: Combining cultures, families, faith and awkward laughter” into its fold. I can’t wait to tell you more about it.

Basically my feelings:
A noontime rest for a full-fledged assembly worker at the Long Beach, Calif., plant of Douglas Aircraft Company. Nacelle parts for a heavy bomber form the background  (LOC)

The title may shift but I am committed to this small press that has shown a strong dedication to new voices of faith –an attribute I was hoping for all along in a publisher. I’ll look forward to sharing with you how this offer came to fruition and I’ll be honored to share more about the prospective release of the book.

Unge mennesker på stranden

If you want to join in the ring-around-the-rosie:
Be sure to keep up with me by Twitter @Kendraspondence or subscribe to our mailing list (on the right panel where it says “Be Cool, Subscribe”) if you give two toots about the book 😉 Even if you don’t, I appreciate your readership here and your friendship on and off this matrix which privileges me to write out some of the crazy rattling around in the ol’ head.

Captain Joseph H. Freedman Hq, USAFIME, is shown blowing the Shofar

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When DJ Tanner sends you a book in the mail

As part of the B&H Bloggers program, I received a free copy Candace Cameron Bure’s latest book. I spent no less than three days laughing every time I saw it on the coffee table, which is where I thought it might have to remain. I could not in good faith review a book that was the farthest thing for me to reach for, even within the genre of spiritual memoir which is my fave. It just wouldn’t be fair. A good book reviewer will be able to separate the person from the author’s voice; to reserve critique for the author’s character from the author’s content.

I have very little against Candace Cameron Bure. I have listened to her talk at Liberty University. I appreciate the principles upon which she is unwavering as she makes decisions for her career and family. I just don’t think she is exceptionally talented as an actress or inspirational speaker. I didn’t have high hopes for her writing, though I give her credit for letting her co-author Erin Davis have a proper byline. (Ghostwriters get such a bum deal.) Most importantly, though, I was completely prejudiced against the premise of this book. I don’t watch “Dancing with the Stars” which the writer uses as the framework for the events of this memoir, drawing spiritual insights from her time preparing for and performing on this reality TV show. The fact that Bure got a book deal out of a quasi-celebrity TV appearance seemed like–well, I think Uncle Joey’s reaction is apt: Cut. It. Out.

Curiosity got the better of me, though. And you know what? This book is actually pretty substantive. The tone is sincere throughout. Bure clearly cares about the way she comports herself on and off camera. She took her role on the show very seriously and examined every decision through the prism of how she would be representing herself as a godly woman. There are moments that are really inspiring, like how she shares her and her husband Val’s discussion about performing the seductive rumba and the implications for her as a daughter of Christ. The discussion on modesty was comprehensive and not pious. It was accessible, drawing from Proverbs, Psalms, and many parts of the New Testament. I think on these merits alone, the book is worth buying for a young person who is navigating the murky waters on modesty.

Still, the writing is pretty painful at times. In certain moments, it’s as if DJ Tanner is writing the copy. There are sentences like, “Betcha didn’t know that dancing could be such serious business!” Ay. Where is Kimmy Gibbler because we need some comic relief. Moreover, the premise is overall still vomitous. There is a lot of attention paid to social media reactions and the book is written with the assumption that the reader cared deeply about the show and about Bure’s competitive edge. If you have a rabid DWTS fan in your house, this book might be for him or her. However, the spiritual insights within the framework of one season of one show was just not enough for a solid story skeleton. A book like Devon Franklin’s “Produced by Faith” does a much better job using show business as a metaphor wherein the spiritual life is examined.

Bure’s book can probably be read in about a week and is available in paperback.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above (typically those to books) may be “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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