Meadow Rue Merrill is an author, journalist, and occasional editor who writes books for children and adults from a little house in the big woods of Mid-Coast Maine. Her memoir, “Redeeming Ruth: Everything Life Takes, Love Restores,” debuts in May 2017.
When 16-month-old Ruth arrived in Maine from an orphanage in Uganda, she couldn’t sit up, roll over, or speak, but her life spoke volumes about the importance of family, the meaning of faith, and the power of love.
Faith Notes: Words that Encourage
Life is often rough, mine included. Some days seem designed to crush your hopes and dreams. For inspiration and understanding, I turn to the same words that have guided generations, the Scriptures. Are you weary? Searching for encouragement? Me too! Faith Notes are weekly, Scripture-based meditations drawn from my everyday life and shared in the hope that they will strengthen your faith and brighten your day. Subscribe below.
One of my favorite Christmas memories is also one of my hardest. Suffering with cancer, my mom lived four hours away from our home in Maine. That winter and fall I drove back and forth twice a month. It would have been impossible without the kindness of strangers. You see, my mom lived in a cottage at the Willimantic Camp Meeting Association, a historic Christian community in Connecticut. Her neighbors, who were away, offered my family the free use of their house.read more
The first Christmas toy catalog arrived in my mailbox one week before Halloween. Ugh, I thought. Really? I glanced through its glossy pages not to jumpstart my holiday shopping but to confirm precisely what it is I am working to avoid. Excess spending. Excess waste. Excess stress. Each year I strive to be intentional about how our family celebrates Christmas. Often my plans go awry and I go on a last-minute spending blitz, worried that my husband and I haven’t done enough.read more
I had a post-election meltdown this week. Overwhelmed by the rage and fear and blame being fired like bullets on Facebook, I accidently ‘unfriended’ people who I deeply care about in an effort to make the name-calling go away. ‘Accidently’ because I thought I could see their profiles again once the angry rhetoric quieted down. But the next day, poof, a couple hundred people had completely disappeared from my contacts. By acting in haste without realizing the consequences, I ended up injuring myself and others.read more
For months – OK, years – I watched the tightly wound rows of two braided throw rugs pull apart. One under the kitchen sink. One by the back door. Each time someone stepped on them, the tears grew longer. And each time I tossed the rugs in the washing machine, I silently swore I’d stitch the rows back together. But I kept putting it off. By now the tears were so large that my favorite rug, shaped like a heart, was unravelling from the inside out, threatening to come apart in two pieces. Finally I could stand it no longer.read more
My family of seven lives in a small house, which gets messy fast. Especially when the chickens decide it is their house too.
On a recent morning I’d spent a couple of hours tidying up while my husband, Dana, and older kids were at work and school. I had just finished reading to our younger boys. Everything was beginning to look the way I like – neat and orderly – when I had the brilliant idea to paint the shutters that Dana had built for my birthdayread more
There’s much to say about the similarities between raising children and chickens. Both make a mess. Both require firm boundaries (apologies to the neighbors with the wild-bird feeder that my hens find so alluring). And both have a seemingly endless appetite and propensity to excrete smelly droppings.read more