wood door

I learned the hard way that it’s better to invite a friend in than tell them no because you are embarrassed.

I said NO once, years ago. And I still regret it. Telling my friend she can’t come in to use the bathroom went way deeper than my shame over a falling apart weird bathroom in a 100 year old house that we rented. It wasn’t because I was afraid there was underwear on the floor, I could have run in and made a joke about straightening up really quick…

Me not allowing her to come in was me telling her that I couldn’t really trust her.

I was telling her she can’t be trusted with the imperfections of my life so I have to go to great lengths to hide them. I was telling her that I believed she would judge me.

The truth is, there are some people in the world who can’t be trusted with the imperfections of my life, but usually, I’m not friends with them. Usually those aren’t the people dropping me off at my house who ask if they can come in and use my bathroom. Those are the people I can trust with my mess. If not them, then who?

Inviting someone into your home is a high form of trust.

It says here are my powerlines, here are my unfinished things. I trust you can handle that. It’s okay. Life goes on. People are more important than how I rate my stuff. And I trust you feel the same way.


Inviting someone into your mess says: I trust you.

Hospitality isn’t about impressing your friends. Who wants to go to that house?

free from judgingdon’t you love it when you are writing a post and your sister happens to tweet the perfect quote?

Hospitality isn’t about me. It’s about you who come into my home. It’s about listening and connecting and encouraging. It’s about rest and peace and fun. And hopefully eating something delicious and drinking iced coffees.

Guess what? I can do all of that with half stripped wallpaper, carpet pad for flooring in our upstairs hall and a pink toilet.

If you are lucky, that friend will hold your hand and point out the beauty that you might not see.

If I wait until my house is acceptable before I invite people in we are both losing. Because I know me, and I’ll never deem it acceptable. It’s worth it to start now.


friends Maria, Logan & Jeremy, Reeve, Caroline, Jen, Asheley & Jamin, Karrie & Josh’s party, & Angela, Darlene & Shannon (my design mentors!) have all been to our fixer-upper unfinished home in the past six months. I’m so glad I did it anyway. I’m so glad I said yes.

This weekend Tsh and Kyle and the kids are coming. She has a book signing & reader meetup here in Charlotte (Chad & Reeve & I will be there, we hope to see you there!) and our husbands have gotten to know each other enough that this seems like a really fun idea. So basically, the Simple Guru of the Internet is coming to my unfinished, fixer-upper, chaotic house. She actually came a few months ago, when our house was in even more chaos. So that helps me remember the words I write in this post. Because I too, have to remember that THIS is so worth it and that Tsh can be trusted with my imperfections. I know she can.

Will I clean my house? Of course. Will I fret and worry and apologize? Nope.

We’re happy to welcome the Oxenreider family into our world where things aren’t perfect because we trust they can relate.


things aren't perfect


Because your house might not be perfect but your home & hospitality are exactly what we need.