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7.30.2013

Ever After ~ Review

Ever After
By Vicki Courtney

Life lessons learned in my castle of chaos...

Ever After takes a look at marriage and the ever after after you say I do.  We live under a delusion that we will have a happily ever after just like in a Disney fairy tale, but how many Disney tales show the ever after after The End.  One assumes it's happily.  Or is it?

Our modern culture has idolized the wedding at the expense of the marriage.  What comes after the I do's is more important than the perfect dress or the rehearsal dinner.  If your marriage isn't built on a foundation of friendship you will have problems.

Chapter 2 opens with a quote from C.S. Lewis that everyone should take to heart. "A woman's heart should be so close to God that a man should have to chase Him to find her." Don't you just love that sentiment.  Marriage should be not a union of two but of three.

But Ever After isn't all serious though there are some serious topics discussed throughout.  There are some humorous moments as the author takes you through her trials-and-errors as both and wife and mother.  I think a picture my mom had when my sisters and I were little would be a good motto that would fit in with this book.  Cleaning and scrubbing can wait til tomorrow, for children grow-up we've learned to our sorrow.  

This sentiment is apt for both marriage and parenting.  Don't be everything to everybody except your family.  Make an investment at the beginning of your Ever After so that you will have an Ever After in your future.  Take and make time for you and your spouse, don't put it off until later.  Your marriage should not revolve around your children.  It is not "of the children, by the children, and for the children."  The foundation is the marriage and if it is not maintained and shored up it will crumble.  This isn't to say that you should ignore your children, but don't focus on your children to the exclusion of your marriage.  Your identity should be more than the parent of so-and-so, you are also a husband or wife. 

I loved reading about Vicki's cooking adventures and last minute school projects with her children.  And her thoughts on Proverbs 31 are enlightening no matter how many times you've delved into the virtuous woman.

Ever After is the tool you need to add happily to your ever after.

I was provided a copy of this book by Shelton Interactive in exchange for my honest review.

About the Book:
Most every woman dreams about having a family and a building a home. We grow up on a steady diet of fairytales and chick flicks that drive our dreams . . . and leave us with a sugarcoated version of reality. We want it all: the prince, the kiss, the proposal, the ring, the castle, and eventually, the kids in smocked rompers playing cheerfully on the perfectly manicured lawn. Our hopes and dreams are pinned on the world’s version of happily-ever-after.

The problem is, the fairytales and chick flicks end where real life begins. We never see that follow-up scene where the prince and princess argue at 3 a.m. over who will get up with the colicky newborn. Or the princess reluctantly returns to work to help pay the bills and feels the stress of juggling work and family. And you certainly won’t see that part where the princess moves her last child into the dorm and realizes the bulk of her identity has been based on being a mother.

The truth is, marriage and motherhood are hard. Few of us are prepared to handle the balancing act of being a good wife and a good mother, without one or the other getting the short end of the stick. No matter how much we give or how hard we try, we never quite feel like it’s enough. And heaven help us, we always imagine every one else is doing a much better job.

In Ever After, best-selling author Vicki Courtney addresses the realities of marriage and motherhood, the difficulties and the blessings. It offers women a behind the scenes glimpse of what a fairytale really looks like on the average day for the average wife and mom. Poignant, funny, and even cathartic, Vicki shares mistakes made, lessons learned, and memories to keep. Most of all, she reflects the hope and promise that God meets us in the middle wherever we are in the journey.