“Friendship is the Soul’s Heaven” – A. Bronson Alcott

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I’m a sucker for soap of all kinds. I’ve dabbled in making my own soap, but I can’t ever resist picking up soap bars when I see them somewhere and inhaling the scent. It’s hard for me not to buy it.

I guess maybe there is some deep seated uncleanliness of my soul that drives me with this fondness. It’s not just soap that leads me to think so. I’ve often thought, that if life as we know it ends, one of the things I would miss the most would be taking a shower or bath. There is nothing like getting clean at the end of the day, and I generally do not totally relax until I’ve gotten clean. (That’s probably more than you wanted to know.)

Getting to the point of this post: I went out to the mailbox yesterday and found a package in my mailbox. It was from my friend Shanda. I sent her a couple of old cookbooks that I needed to part with. We are downsizing, and I had to part with some of my stuff. These cookbooks were by Meta Givens and they were permanently out of print. I didn’t want to just put them in the ‘Goodwill’ bag. One of them was taped together, because it was old.  I’d found it that way in a rummage sale.

So I pulled out this package, and as I cut it open I was hit with the most wonderful citrus-y smell coming from this beautifully packaged soap! She had sent it to me as a ‘thank you’ for the old, decrepit books I had sent her. 😦 I was so touched. The card was a beautiful as the soap.

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She had also sent a soap pad, which is important, especially for handmade soap, because if it doesn’t drain properly, it melts faster. I didn’t have one!

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I met Shanda through her blog. I just stumbled onto her blog one day, and I was captivated from the first post. I can’t remember exactly how long ago it was, but I’m thinking it was at least 6 years ago. I have been a devoted follower ever since, and we have become friends.

Shanda is a talented writer, and a beautiful photographer. Her creativity astounds me. She is always making something beautiful out of nothing, or cooking something delicious or sewing something for one of her children. Her blog makes me laugh and cry. She has seven beautiful children, and I’ve fallen in love with her family through her blog. She is one of the most devoted mothers I know. She inspires me by the way she lives her live, how she takes care of her family, and by how she is able to savor each moment of every day…especially the little things we so often overlook. I love how she looks at life. I can’t tell you how many times her blog has made me examine my own life, or look at things differently, and strive to make changes in my own life because of it. I can’t say enough good things about her, and I hope that you will visit her blog, too.

Good To Be Home


Thank you so much, Shanda, for being such a good friend, Christian sister and an inspiration to me…and thank you for the lovely gift.




4 thoughts on ““Friendship is the Soul’s Heaven” – A. Bronson Alcott

    1. Thank you, Kendra. My photography, too, has been inspired by Shanda. She has such a creative approach to the settings in her photos. I often think, “How can I make this look as pretty as Shanda does?”


  1. You took such lovely pictures. Kara, I got myself the same bar of soap, I love to smell it! I sort of reminds me of PEZ candy…sweet….I bought the soap and the pad at shops right here in our own little town. I’m SO SO glad the package got to you so quickly and that everything was okay. You said such nice things about me, but you know you have also been an inspiration to me as well as a big encouragement here in blog land. I love you, too. Thank you for your kindness and lets keep journeying on together. Oh, and I will treasure the cookbooks always!


    1. Hmmm….Pez? LOL. It’s been a long time since I have sniffed those. It smells like orange blossoms to me…absolutely delicious. Thank you for your kind words. I look forward to MANY more years in this blogging journey with you. 🙂


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