Heaven Is Here by Stephanie Nielson.
I've been reading Stephanie Nielson's blog, Nie Nie Dialogues, for a long, long time. In fact, I was reading her words before I started writing my own over six years ago. I was first attracted to Stephanie's bright images, her creative projects and her honest accounts of the happy life she shared with children (the same ages as my own) and her doting Mr. Nielson. I still remember when I heard the news of the accident. We were on a trip visiting friends in Boise. I'll never forget the way the blogosphere rallied around the Nielson's that day and in the months to follow. It was remarkable!
Recently, I was given the opportunity to review Stephanie's memoir Heaven Is Here.I must begin by telling you that memoirs are my favorite kinds of books to read. I love learning from other people's life experiences and there are plenty of lessons in Heaven Is Here. Stephanie's account of her courtship with Christian, their married years living far away from family and her early days blogging gave me a better understanding of her faith and strength. Then, as the book continued, I was right with Stephanie on that fateful day of the crash that took the life of their dear friend and pilot Doug Kinnard. I was with her when she woke from a three and a half month coma. I was cheering her on as she re-learned basic skills like walking and when she found the courage to look in a mirror for the first time. And I have to admit, I had tears streaming down my face as she reconnected with her children.
Stephanie's life is nothing short of a miracle and this memoir is nothing short of a treasure. I feel grateful to have read it and hope you take the time to savor the inspirational messages in Heaven Is Here.