Lost in Drawers

Category: marriage

The Itch

I have to remember that this is our blog, and it’s okay to be a bit personal from time and again. Lately, I’ve been in a struggle of worry, self realization, trying to look towards the future and desperately attempting to find contentment in our current place in life and the situations we find ourselves in. Recently, I finished reading God Loves Ugly and Love Makes Beautiful. And I can say that I really loved it, and related to all the chapters and especially when she talks about contentment. Then I find this entirely honest post  by the author. It practically jumped out and slapped me in the face.

Contentment. Such a novel idea. But, will the ‘yet’ ever come? It’s been a difficult few years, trying to grow inside of a new new marriage and it’s like we find ourselves at crossroad after crossroad. We are asked to deal with situations that require a choice over and over again.  Now, we have a handful of questions to answer. Where do we want to live and work? When do we know when it’s time to have a baby? How do we move our business if we relocate and grow it into the dream I’ve had for what seems forever? I ask myself what it would be like to be unstuck, and not two people wound up so tight with the weight of the (our) world on our shoulders. How do we find the contentment we seek with so many unknowns? How do we find contentment and just be still?

I can’t say I know the answer, but this I do know. I have the itch to discover something more than merely existing. Bo and I want to have a community and friends around us, and we know that life is bigger than we could ever imagine. I want the “yet” to be the now. Do I know how things will turn out? No. But “if you never try you’ll never know” rings true and my prayer is that me, you and everyone we’ve ever known will step outside of ourselves. It’s time to follow our dreams. Now, I’ll if I can just remember to keep telling myself that.

P.S. A reminder from our friend Jill.

Dear Human: You’ve got it all wrong. You didn’t come here to master unconditional love. That is where you came from and where you’ll return. You came here to learn personal love. Universal love. Messy love. Sweaty love. Crazy love. Broken love. Whole love. Infused with divinity. Lived through the grace of stumbling. Demonstrated through the beauty of… messing up. Often. You didn’t come here to be perfect. You already are. You came here to be gorgeously human. Flawed and fabulous. And then to rise again into remembering. But unconditional love? Stop telling that story. Love, in truth, doesn’t need ANY other adjectives. It doesn’t require modifiers. It doesn’t require the condition of perfection. It only asks that you show up. And do your best. That you stay present and feel fully. That you shine and fly and laugh and cry and hurt and heal and fall and get back up and play and work and live and die as YOU. It’s enough. It’s Plenty.


This life is Yours and hope is rising

Sometimes you are ready for the weekend just as the week is beginning. Needless to say, by dawn on Monday we were ready for this coming weekend to arrive and to be far far away from the stresses of the real world. By midweek, we are doing better and we are still ready for the weekend. Easter is one of those weekends that has both meaning in regards to our faith, and an overall sense of rebirth and new life. We could use a healthy dose of rebirth and there is no weekend that could arrive sooner.

Love wins. Honesty wins. Forgiveness wins. Grace wins. Hope wins. LOVE WINS.


“This life is Yours and hope is rising” – Tear Down These Walls by Hillsong United

Valentines Day

To keep Valentine’s Day in perspective, things in life aren’t always perfect and romance shouldn’t be set for just one day. Regardless, kindness is always nice, love is wonderfully amazing…and a few presents? Well, presents are my favorite. Truth be told, it’s my love language. So, it’s not too shabby to receive flowers arranged by one’s husband, a long-coveted leather bound copy of Alice In Wonderland, and along with Emory, a few Disney items! To top it all off, we were able to have some time in the trees of the Botanical Gardens and then off to dinner at our favorite, Jinbeh Japanese Restaurant in Las Colinas. Some things are just a necessity. It feels nice to have a day where life is about giving to each other and blocking out the distractions caused by the busyness of life. It’s about allowing each other the space to truly enjoy each other.  And then go record and book hunting and head home from a night out on Valentine’s Day with 1/2 dozen delicious donuts from Dunkin’ Donuts. Because nothing says you are comfortable with your place in life like an armful of donuts. And remember, “Love is love” so let’s share it every day. Happy Valentine’s Day!

P.S. – Being it is our 4th Valentine’s Day together, we thought we’d document the moment with some photos of us now. It’s always nice to be able to see who we are and how far we’ve come from when we met those years ago.

Broadripple Is Burning

For some people, home decorating comes so easily, but for the Liles? Not so much. We know what we like, we have our style but finding all the pieces and putting it together, and then agreeing on things…well, its hard. Not every thing translates. Heather knows fashion, as in she eats, sleeps and dreams and researches fashion. And the skills of a writer don’t exactly translate either. So us trying to decorate a house that is almost double the size of our current place is daunting indeed. Luckily, we have plenty of catalogs and look books, HGTV and IKEA.  Today, we ventured yet again to the latter for Swedish Meatballs and furniture. And despite an unscheduled couples IKEA “fight” (over lamps?) we came away with polka dot drapes and a couple of occasional chairs for the living room. So, we are doing surprisingly well in selling old items for new, more functional pieces.  It’s an adventure in nest building, and for a home we hope to be in for some time.

In All Honesty

We all live out a good portion of our lives online. Connecting with friends, collecting and documenting memories and of course, making plans for new experiences…filling out our social calendars. We have talked here on Lost In Drawers about our own discussions about any and all of us self edit online. We don’t show much of the struggle, we don’t ask the big questions. But the fact is that all of us struggle. And, honestly, it is time to talk about it openly.

We have weekly, if not seemingly daily, discussions on struggle. The question as it relates to our friends and family and to this blog and other social media is simply: can we be honest about life’s struggles yet not complain?  We constantly try and seek for perspective about our life. Yet, the doubts still hang out there about how we can be authentic and still talk honestly about life. We do believe that we can still love Jesus, lean on him, and still have a discourse about what goes wrong. So, here goes a round of transparency.

We have been married almost two and a half years, and yet it seems like no one tells you how hard real marriage is. There never was or will be a honeymoon period. It was hard from engagement until today. We are not financially stable. We have fought more than either one of us would have liked. We are stubborn, passionate, and Bo – who is an ordained minister – is in therapy for depression that has undermined much of our communication as a couple. So, the truth is this: save us the the pretty canned speeches about marriage, because we don’t need to hear theory. We need to know that it can get better, that the love we have deep in or hearts will spread to our circumstance and yes, will see us materially stable. Because in marriage, “all you need is love” isn’t enough when you have $20 and payday is 8 days away (which did happen once or twice or maybe even three times). This isn’t to say that we don’t have amazing moments, because we do.  We have explored more than most and we have the documentation in pictures and words to give us smiles for decades. Yet, we do ask ourselves: there is more to it than this, right?

The transparency has to extend further. It is easy to look at everyone’s carefully edited lives on blogs, Facebook and Twitter and wonder – what are we doing wrong? How come everyone else can buy houses left and right and we struggle to find a rental home with enough space to build a life and eventually round out our family? Because, marriage without two bathrooms REALLY is a trial. Seriously. Two bathrooms, two televisions and an office area. All married couples need this at some point. How do you talk about these questions and live a positive life? Do we need a mansion? No. But how is it that others (at least publicly) are doing well on many fronts – often at younger ages – and we look at life and ask… why are we still waiting on an answer to this or that, a path or a way to our future to open, a patch of hope in the midst of darkness?

Life is complicated. The issue we often have with our Christian faith is the the way our religious environments apply the story of God & Creation to life now. Being a minister and not having an outlet to use one’s calling with no ability to pay off a seminary education, and being a independently-minded prospective female business owner and always waiting on someone else to answer so we can move forward with plans can be maddening. “No” and “wait” and never yes is never easy. Yet, all our and your lives we are given simplified answers to impossibly nuanced problems. “Trust in the Lord” we are told. Okay, but how do we balance surrender/trust with engagement and truly caring about something. God is not a genie in a bottle, but our faith hinges on God still existing and active in our worlds. How does “simple faith” answer us, as when those who may not believe and even outspoken against Christian faith are better off in life than we are? Can we die to caring about these things without slipping into a life of mediocrity and giving up on big bold dreams for our life? Yet, all we see out of both ourselves and others in this digital world is carefully curated lives that smack of a magic show of Instagram, Pinterest, Etsy, inspirational quotes and digital friendships than never stop down to say – today I don’t understand how our culture can be so unfair and cruel.

Does the fact that we question and are honest about how society has stacked the cards against many of us change our faith? No. We remain in love with a God who’s earthly embodiment in one Jesus taught of a different way and proved his commitment even until death. We believe in resurrection, not only of Him, but ourselves and our hopes for a better life. Why? Because because of the same complicated nature of life that causes us to ask so many hard questions. Life is delicate, intricate and always surprising. And in spite of all our worrying, struggling to keep the electric bill paid, frustration in communicating, dealing with relationships with family & friends that are often in flux and spiritual searching (in hearts and for a new church currently) – we saw something. We are a part of something sacred and ancient. We saw that this is the story of the Scriptures. The stories of history. Anyone who is remembered dared to be honest. We hope we are doing the same.

Bo & Heather

P.S. I tried to fix every grammatical and punctuation mistake, but sometimes my passion gets the best of me!


Tale as old as time Song as old as rhyme Beauty and the Beast

There is something about Disney that is beyond wonderful, no matter one’s age. So, our house has been buzzing when we found out the Disney vault was re-releasing the classic Beauty in the Beast…wait for it…in 3D! Now, to be honest we are not the biggest 3D fans but we were game and today we got to see the classic featuring everyone’s favorite Belle, that Beast chap and a cast of enchanted housewares. And it was everything we had hoped for and MORE. Disney above any other studio does 3D right, using it with care and to great effect. They know that good story is the key, and everything else is just a bonus. It was better looking than ever before and of course the story and songs are timeless, you know, a tale as old as time. Go see it!

Up next…The Little Mermaid 3D….September 2013! Pretty Epic!

Blog Love in the Panther City…Fort Worth- Part 7

A little blog love in the Panther City that is a bit more close to home (literally).  If you know anything about Bo Liles, you would know what an good writer he is (I’m biased as his wife)…he started a sister blog to our own Lost in Drawers by the name of Voodoo Heart.  If you have the time please do check it out and maybe think on some new things, and challenge him, comment, disagree with him…love him..I do all of these things and he still loves me! http://voodooheart.wordpress.com/ for frequent essays and thoughts on Christian Spirituality, culture, theology, art & creativity, relationships and what it means to navigate this life. Check it out, won’t you please!?!


Hi Twenty Seven!

How to celebrate the birthday of a woman who was taught you most everything about adventure?  You plan a day of favorite things, delivered in both new and familiar ways.  We begun the day by flowers delivered, french macaroons appearing, mimosas (heavy on the OJ) and a leisurely morning of getting ready.  And for what?  Well, we decided lunch was too important on such a day to leave to familiarity, and so I took Heather to Oddfellows in Oak Cliff’s Bishop Arts District.  It did not disappoint. A take on ham & cheese with (french) frites & a cherry limeade for her, and huevos rancheros & coffee for me.  The weather cooperated again this day, so strolls were in order around this tiny pocket of Oak Cliff that was inspiring and even yielded treats for one Emory Holden Liles.  The Nasher Center was a great backdrop for the day, but the real treat was the exhibit of amazing Tibetan art at the Crow Gallery (and its free!).  From there, Society Bakery, Corner Market, and shopping brought smiles, treats, dresses/skirts and conversation with engaging people.  Dallas conquered, Fort Worth brought simply its charm, a new Italian restaurant with patio seating facing Sundance Square and perfect sunsets.  Did I mention french macaroons?  Did I mention that on this day of all days, a boy should give a girl a big dose of contentment and smiles.  Happy Birthday, darling…you deserve all of this and so much more.

Now, how about that un-birthday?

Happy 27th Birthday…

Ever had a dream that felt like a life story?  One that was a movie, a three act play and never a single scene.  In such a dream you get to see progression, you see growth, you see the world as you want it.  It is a vision that can run the spectrum of emotions and experiences – it happens in both a lifetime and split second.  Such a dream is rare and perfect.

And such is my life with my wife, Heather.  She is the dream I have been waiting my whole life for.  She is that dream one never wants to end.  When we met, I had been waiting, in the words of the song, 29 years before I saw (her).  I never thought I would find such a woman, who is at ease with herself, who is honest, who is passionate, who is loyal, who is creative, who is hilarious, who is adventurous and who is absolutely beautiful.  Three years into our story, I am learning new and wonderful things about her every day, I am challenging myself to be the man and husband to match her as the woman and wife I lucked into marrying.  She is my world as well as my doorway to a life I never thought I could have.  She is everything a person is looking for in a companion, and for you all a friend to have.  She is my love, my lover, my muse, my friend, my counsel, my business partner, my wife and my dream come true.

In a word, a dream…my dream.  Perfect. Wonderful.



Here’s to adventures, Heather’s birthday, balloons, tapas, sweet treats, s’mores, camping in teepees, fall weather arriving, planting container gardens, healthy eating, non-boring exercise, light sweaters, boots, hats, epic sunsets, hard cider, brunch, inspiration, community, all types of football (Bo), primetime TV, documentaries on Netflix, bike rides, fall crafts, dog walking, meditation, enlightenment, annointing, purpose, grace, hope and love. But most of all love.