I get asked all the time what my favorite books and resources are for Christian homemakers! So I decided that I needed to get these all in one place. I will update this page frequently as I share new resources via my blog and podcast.
ALL of these resources below are ones I personally recommend and use. No one has paid me to place their company here. Unless otherwise noted, I currently use each and every one of these. Enjoy!!
Disclosure: Please note that I have included affiliate links for certain ones at no additional cost to you. I will earn a small commission from some of those if you decide to purchase. I’ve included the affiliate links because they were available and help support my ministry but all links and resources are included because I truly do love them! Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or that they will help you achieve your goals within your homemaking.
My Favorite Homemaking Resources
Looking for tools to help in your homemaking? Here are my very favorite tools and resources (with links to applicable blog posts if available):
Build a Menu – Meal Planning Website
This is my very favorite meal planning website. I’ve been using them for going on two years now. I’ve tried several other meal planning websites and this is the only one that has everything I need (a database of recipes, ability to add my own recipes, freezer cooking options, Trim Healthy Mama recipes, budget friendly tools, and more). You can see how I use Build a Menu in this post (I hope to do a more in depth video soon walking you through it).
Use coupon code: SaveMeMoney at checkout to try out your first month for only $4!
Make Over Your Mornings Course by Crystal Paine
Take this 14 day course all about making over your mornings and learning how to manage all the CRAZY! Crystal’s grace-filled and simple approach to forming daily routines and rituals is a breath of fresh air. It doesn’t have to take a huge amount of time to transform your homemaking – in fact, if you can commit just 10 minutes a day, you can see a HUGE improvement in your homemaking. Check out the course today!
This course is not about getting up early but rather it’s about establishing small little routines into different parts of your day so that you can use your time wisely and efficiently.
Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner
This is the planner that I use every day. I’ve been using it for almost three years now and it includes everything I need. I’m really picky about the planner that I use. But this one was created by a Christian wife and mother of 6 who really gets what homemakers need to help plan their days. (And unlike some planners that cost upwards of $50-60, this planner is less than $15!!)
This post here shows a peek inside the planner and this post has a video in it that shows how I use the planner in my homemaking! (Those posts show the 2014 edition but the same basic concept is what’s in the 2016 edition)
ThredUp – Online Consignment Clothing for Women & Kids
I have ordered clothing from ThredUp more times than I can count. I’m a huge thrift store shopper – but with four young kiddos, I can’t do that very often! ThredUp is the perfect solution. I can shop for name brand gently used clothing for fantastic prices – and there are FREE returns!! Here’s a post I wrote detailing my experience using ThredUp.
You can get $10 off your first order (with no minimum purchase) when you sign up through my referral link here.
Stitch-Fix – Personalized Box of Clothing
If you hate shopping (or simply don’t have the time or energy like me), then Stitch Fix might be the perfect solution for you! You fill out a style profile, share what things you are looking for, and a stylist shops for YOU and sends you a box with five items she thinks you will love. You then pick what you want to buy and send back the rest! The clothes are higher priced than somewhere like ThredUp (see above) – but the quality can’t be beat! Plus, it’s just totally fun! Here’s my first experience with StitchFix and then why I started changing my mind about StitchFix.
Update: Stitch Fix has become my very favorite way to purchase clothes. You can read the “secrets” I’ve learned for getting the most out of Stitch Fix…it only took five boxes to figure it out ;) Learn how to do Stitch Fix the right way!
You can sign up to get your first StitchFix Here.
Homemaking Foundation’s Podcast
This is my weekly podcast that gives you the tools, inspiration, and encoruagement that you need to craft a Gospel-Centered Home! I cover all aspects of Biblical homemaking and a new episode is posted each week. Think of it kind of like a free internet radio show!
These are my absolute favorite aprons – on my last count, I own at least 5! There is something so fun about putting on an Apron. It’s cute, it’s protective, and it helps motivates me to cook dinner or make some yummy treats for the next day. They are normally a good price (compared to other aprons out there) but they often run deals and a couple times a year they run amazing deals! Check out all their aprons here.
Vitacost – Where I buy most of my healthy things
Vitacost is one of my very favorite places to order things! I typically do a Vitacost order every month or so and it’s where I buy (almost) all of our bath and beauty products, vitamins, supplements, and even some food items! The middle of this post shows what I buy often from Vitacost. I have found that their prices are consistently lower than both Amazon and Costco (which is where I buy most everything else).
Honest Co. – My Favorite Brand of Natural Cleaning/Beauty Products
I really thought that Honest Co. was a bit scammy when it first came out. I thought they were one of those companies trying to make some money off the healthy/green movement. But as I researched more and more, I came to really respect the ingredients they use in their products. I have not found a company yet that so consistently uses healthy and toxic-free chemicals AND has products that work as well. I started doing Honest Co. orders when my first set of twins were born and I needed to find healthy baby products, and they have been one of my very favorite brands ever since. I do an Honest Co. order every 2-3 months depending on what we need (each order is usually 5-8 items).
You can get $10 OFF your first bundle order when you sign up through my referral link. (Hint: You can also find Honest Co. products at Target and on Vitacost but the prices are not as low as when you order a bundle. The exception is that certain Costco’s carry a couple of items and those prices are actually lower than the Honest Co. website. My Costco carries the shampoo, healing balm (which I use as diaper rash cream), and sunscreen in the summer.
Database for Non-Toxic & Healthy Products – Always FREE to Use!
Isn’t is confusing when you are out shopping (or browsing Amazon or Vitacost) for healthier products but you don’t know what to get? Um…yeah. It has made me want to give up in the past and head to Walmart and just get whatever is cheapest. That is, until I found out about EWG’s database of products. They have compiled a database of ingredients and thousands of products to give you a rating of their safety.
Their database is free to use (and they even have a handy iPhone app) and makes it SO handy for looking up how toxic (or hopefully non-toxic) an item or product really is. You can search for beauty and cosmetic products via their Skin Deep database and search for non-toxic house cleaners via their cleaning database. For example, you can search for Honest Co. Shampoo and see that it has a really low rating of 1. When you click on that items profile, you can see every single ingredient listed out with an individual score and why it’s rated as it is. Wow!
Books I Love & Recommend
Are you wondering how you could possibly find the time to read as a busy wife, mom, or homemaker? Check out my busy mom’s guide to finding time to read! Are you looking for some fiction suggestions? See my list here of my favorite Christian Fiction books for all ages!
Homemaking/Biblical Womanhood Books
Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin – If you want a no-nonsense, non-fluffy guide to studying the Bible, then I highly recommend this book! This is in my top 10 books of all time: I share about this book in episode #9 of my podcast.
Treasuring Christ When Your Hands Are Full by Gloria Furman – Gloria really encouraged me through this book to turn to Christ, to cling to Him, and to daily be in God’s Word – even when it feels like you can’t find another second. The entire book kept pointing back to the fact that we need to be in constant prayer and to really treasure Christ amidst our busy lives as moms. See my full review of the book here.
Glimpses of Grace: Treasuring the Gospel in Your Home by Gloria Furman – Gloria writes from within the reality of homemaking. What it actually looks like when you are burned out and exhausted from caring for your home each day. But she also has such a powerful way of bringing everything back to the Gospel and how we need to view our home within the scope of eternity. A very powerful book that I highly recommend all women read! I share about this book in episode #17 of my podcast.
Say Goodbye to Survival Mode by Crystal Paine – If you feel like you are just barely surviving in your home, you need to get this book. Crystal walks you step by step through what it means to set goals and priorities, how to build schedules out of those, and how to learn to really thrive within your home. I share about this book in episode #7 of my podcast.
Women Living Well by Courtney Jospeh – Every homemaker should read this book at some point! The book is broken into 4 main parts: Your walk with God, your marriage, your parenting and your homemaking. In every section I felt encouraged and also convicted about how I spend my time, respond to my husband, respond to my kids, and more. If you are looking for a good book on Biblical Womanhood, then I highly recommend you get a copy of Women Living Well! You can read my review of the book here.
Radical Womanhood: Feminine Faith in a Feminist World by Carolyn McCulley – The author is a former Feminist turned Christian in her 30’s. In this amazing book, she dives into Feminist history to give a thorough account of how feminism has largely shaped our view of women in the church today and how instead, we need to recapture the view of our roles as women from Scripture!
The Christian Homemaker’s Handbook by Pat Ennis & Dorothy Patterson – This is one hefty book! If you are new to homemaking or are in a season of feeling totally overwhelmed, then this book is probably not good to read right now. But if you want to take a deeper look into homemaking, I recommend you read it at some point!
Finding a Mentor, Being a Mentor by Donna Otto – Mentorship is something that I don’t hear a lot about in today’s modern church. We throw out Titus 2, but real forms of mentoring don’t seem to be happening a whole lot. Donna Otto gives a very thorough look at mentoring from both sides – the side of being a mentee and also how to be a mentor. I feel like I got a really good understanding of both the younger side of mentoring and the older side! I highly recommend this book to all women. The best way we can learn as women, is from each other! This book teaches you how to do that.
Word-Filled Women’s Ministry by Gloria Furman & Kathleen Nielson – This is not an “easy” read but it’s a great book for anyone interested in serving in women’s ministry. It’s not a book that you just pick up and brease through, but time and again Gloria and Kathleen bring you back to the heart of women’s ministry: The Gospel. I was so convicted and refreshed regarding my own ministry as I read through this book! I highly recommend to anyone involved in women’s ministry or serving in various capacities.
Christian Living Books
Praying the Bible by Donald S. Whitney – If you are wanting to grow in your prayer life – to become more consistent, deeper in your prayers – then Praying the Bible will be of huge help! It’s a short, quick read but packed with practical advice and suggestions.
Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald Whitney – This is one of my top 10 favorite books of all time. Whitney walks you through the Spiritual Disciplines that should characterize Christians – from Bible reading to prayer to giving to Scripture memorization. I share about this book in episode #15 of my podcast.
Just Do Something: A Liberating Approach to Finding God’s Will by Kevin DeYoung – Do you ever struggle to make decisions? To know if you are acting in God’s Will or your own? This simple and short book gives you a thorough understanding of how we can go about discerning God’s Will for our lives and making decisions!
Crazy Busy: A Mercifully Short Book About a Really Big Problem by Kevin DeYoung – Busy. I think that’s the key phrase of our society. Rushing, rushing, busy, adding more things to our to do lists – but what’s the point of it all? How can we break this crazy cycle of running around and doing more and more? This simple, short book helps answer those questions.
The Discipline of Grace: God’s Role and Our Role in the Pursuit of Holiness by Jerry Bridges – The Discipline of Grace offers a clear and thorough explanation of the gospel and what it means to be a believer. This book is straight forward, easy to read, and so convicting! This will be one of those books that I read many times in the next several years.
Trusting God: Even When Life Hurts by Jerry Bridges – A few years ago I was struggling big time with anxiety. It wasn’t that I didn’t trust that God was in control of all things – I just let my fears and struggles cloud out God’s Glory and His goodness. Trusting God was the single best book I read to help me remember and recognize the truths found in His Word.
Respectable Sins: Confronting the Sins We Tolerate by Jerry Bridges – A convicting look at those sins that we tend to “ignore” in Christian circles such as pride, anger, gossip, etc. This is a wonderful book to go through in a group or Bible study.
A Gospel Primer For Christians by Milton Vincent – A Gospel Primer is an excellent book that helps you to further understand the Gospel and really learn to cherish it. The tagline for the book is: Learning to see the glories of God’s Love! I share about this book in episode #18 of my podcast.
The Faithful Parent: A Biblical Guide to Raising a Family by Martha Peace & Stuart Scott – What I love about this parenting book is that each chapter is actually broken down by age! It’s one thing to read a parenting book – it’s another thing to know how to apply what you learn to each season of life. They start with infants, through toddlers, preschool age, and beyond up through young adults! Very practical and easy to follow along.
Shepherding a Child’s Heart by Tedd Tripp – If you are searching for the Biblical basis of parenting and what it means to be “Christian” parents – I highly recommend you check out Shepherding a Child’s Heart.
The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey – Any discussion or study of finances should start here: with Dave Ramsey! This workbook takes you step by step what it means to handle your finances in a smart way, especially if you find yourself in debt. I share about this book in episode #16 of my podcast.
Living Well Spending Less by Ruth Soukup – Ruth gives a real life peek into her financial journey. She gives practical wisdom and advice on wisely handling money – but what I loved most from this book is her emphasis on what and where our worth comes from. That we won’t ever find satisfaction in money, possessions, or status and we will only find true satisfaction in the Lord. I share about this book in episode #14 of my podcast.
Helper by Design: God’s Perfect Plan for Women in Marriage by Elyse Fitzpatrick – She is so honest and transparent about the struggles that we face as women, and how we need to treat those struggles in the light of the Gospel. Learning how to submit and be a godly helper to our husbands, is perhaps one of the greatest struggles we face as women. In this book, Elyse dives into Scripture and takes an in depth look at how we can view our roles within marriage.
When Sinners Say “I Do”: Discovering the Power of the Gospel for Marriage by Dave Harvey – This is a great book to read together with your husband. Harvey focuses on the Gospel and what it truly means to live out a Gospel-Centered marriage that is firmly rooted in Christ. A great book for newlyweds and veterans alike!
Sweethearts for a Lifetime: Making the Most of Your Marriage by Wayne & Carol Mack – If you are looking for a great book to go through with your husband – this one is great!! Each chapter is short and sweet and contains some sort of challenge or guide at the end. It will only take you a few minutes each day to work through – but really connects you and your hubby as sweethearts for a lifetime.
The Excellent Wife: A Biblical Perspective by Martha Peace – If you are a new wife (or new to understanding what it means to be a Biblical wife) I highly recommend you start with this book. Peace is open and candid about her own struggles in marriage and what she’s learned throughout Scripture about living for Christ within your marriage.
When a Woman Inspires Her Husband by Cindi McMenamin – This book was such a blessing to me! My husband picked it up for me at a pastor’s conference (he sent me a picture of the book table and I picked a few). This book really helps you to understand your husband and where he’s coming from as well as fun, unique, and Biblical ideas for inspiring your husband and growing closer together!
My Favorite Cookbooks
100 Days of Real Food by Lisa Leake – If you are interested in learning how to cook whole foods (that your entire family will actually eat) I highly recommend you start with this cookbook! Every recipe we’ve ever tried has been fantastic and she has some really great recipes for kids – like delicious homemade mac and cheese!
The Whole30 by Melissa Hartwig – Here is another foundational book on how to eat healthy and is packed full of amazing recipes! This is a MUST HAVE book if you plan to do a Whole30 diet, but an excellent cookbook to have even if you are not!
The Pioneer Woman: Dinnertime by Ree Drummond – I love all of Ree’s cookbooks, but this one is my favorite! All of her recipes are amazing and this new cookbook even contains a full section of freezer meals: Win!!
Do-It-Yourself Cookbook by America’s Test Kitchen – If you are interested in making things from scratch – such as ketchup, bread, graham crackers and more – this cookbook is so fun to have!! One day I plan on cooking my way through the entire thing to test out every single recipe.
Raw Energy: 124 Raw Food Recipes by Stephanie L. Tourles – I’m always on the hunt for healthy, energy-giving snacks and recipes! This book is PACKED with whole food, healthy snack ideas. Every recipe I’ve tried so far as been fantastic. I plan on one day trying every recipe in the book.
Put ’em Up! by Sherri Brooks Vinton – Are you interested in canning? This book covers everything from the basics to tons of awesome recipes to the equipment you will need. I highly recommend this book if you want to try canning and preserving food.
Blogging & Business Books
The Measure of Success: Uncovering the Biblical Perspective on Women, Work, and the Home by Carolyn McCulley – Is it okay for women to work? What should be our goal(s) within working, our home, and how we view it all? I love Carolyn’s Biblical approach for sifting through it all!
Money Making Mom by Crystal Paine – This is a MUST read book if you want to work from home or start a business but you don’t know where to start. This is a not a how-to manual on making a full time income from home – but rather, a guide to walking you through figuring out what you want to do from home – and how you can have a greater impact with what you do.
Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World by Michael Hyatt – If you are interested in starting a blog, podcast, managing an online ministry, or making money from home – I highly recommend that you start here! Hyatt walks you through step by step what it means to have a platform online, how to use social media, and what it means to have true impact on the internet! I’ve read this book through three times over the years.
Launch: An Internet Millionaire’s Secret Formula To Sell Almost Anything Online by Jeff Walker – If you are launching a product – a book, website, course, etc. then Jeff Walker’s Product Launch Formula is an excellent place to start to learn how to more effectively launch it!
The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau – If you’ve never considered the possibility that you can make money online, the $100 Startup walks you through all the possibilities and will leave you with a million and one ideas of your own!
Essentialism by Greg Mckeown – While Jason and I got this book for our business, it has great principles for living a simple life. Essentialism is all about making and honing the priorities in your life so that you control your schedule and your schedule doesn’t control you!
Ask: The Counterintuitive Online Formula to Discover Exactly What Your Customers Want to Buy by Ryan Levesque – This is one of my favorite online business books! Levesque walks you through the processes to set up so that you can get real, honest feedback from your audience to learn what they really need. If you want to better serve your audience and discover what they are really struggling with, go get Ask.
Unless otherwise noted – these are the tools and resources I use to power my blog here and our ministry over at Homemaking Ministries.
Bluehost – Website Hosting
Because my blog has grown over the years – I have moved to a host that better handles high amounts of traffic (but which is also a lot more expensive)! If you are just starting a blog or are looking for a good solution for your website hosting, I highly recommend BlueHost. It offers a really good price per month and they have great customer service. You can check it out here.
Mailchimp – Email Newsletters
I have been using Mailchimp for my email list for several years now and have been very happy with it. I have found it to be very user friendly and it’s easy to create really nice looking newsletters and emails. You can sign up for a free account for up to 2,000 subscribers and up to 12,000 emails per month. We are currently moving to a new email marketing tool however. See below…
ConvertKit – Email Newsletters
Going forward into 2016, we are starting to use a new email service provider: Convert Kit. We have been looking for a solution that would allow us to do some more advanced email marketing and we are so excited for what ConvertKit is going to provide!! If I was just starting out blogging again today, I would start with ConvertKit. I have been so happy so far with the advanced features and yet, how simple and easy it is to use! You can sign up for an account here.
Evernote – Online Notebook/Management
Jason and I use Evernote every single day in our business and in our personal lives. We each have our own account where we keep to-do lists, links and resources we need, calendars, brainstorming, weekly meeting notes, and more! And then we can share notes or notebooks with each other as we need. You can listen to my podcast episode where I share some unusual and helpful ways to use Evernote.