Every once in a while I like to give you a peek into the everyday doings of life and love, work and play at Firwood Cottage. And so, as summer winds down and crisp mornings hint at things ahead, here’s a glimpse into my life: 

What’s new at Firwood Cottage?

We’ve cleared the piles of pine needles, uprooted weeds, shooed away moles… and planted the beginnings of a lovely garden. My favorite is the apple tree I planted right outside the windows of my Writer’s Cabin in the back. Check out my Pinterest board (For My Back Porch, A Garden To Create) (Diane Comer) to see who I hope this garden grows.

What I’m learning: 

To pay bills! Seriously, my husband loves all that financial, budget, balancing, bill paying part of life. But once my mom moved to the Northwest and after my dad passed away, I’ve been designated mom’s Bill Pay-er. It’s actually kind of fun when it’s not my money and there are no worries attached!

What I’m loving: 

My clothes-line. I’ve wanted one for so long but in our previous house it would have been right in our neighbors line of sight. Now, at Firwood Cottage, no one sees but me. There is a primitive joy in hanging sheets to dry in the warm Northwest breezes— and in falling asleep to the scent of the forest on my pillow.

What I’m reading:

I discovered Parker Palmer this summer and I’ve devoured his little book, Let Your Life Speak. Beautiful, transparent writing from the heart of a poet, a dreamer.

His words set me on a quest to narrow my doings down to only what is mine to do, which then led to a whole stack of books I’m reading right now:

The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst (so good!)

Thrive by Arianna Huffington (interesting)

Essentialism by Greg McKeon (just started)

Organizing for the Creative Person by Dorothy Lehmkuhl, Dolores Lamping (absolutely excellent for my messy mind!)

And, because my favorite before-bed reading is stories, especially the magical, mystical, fairy tale type, I’ve been delving in to Michael Sullivan’s Riyria Chronicles. Elves and dwarves, secret underground cities, a few scary monsters… delicious!

What I’m listening to:

Music is one of the things I miss most about hearing. I see how music speaks to the deepest part of people and I wish I could experience that. But I do have what audiologists call “auditory memory”, which means that my brain perks up and sings along with the melody of songs I listened to years ago before I went deaf. So… Phil bought a couple of albums to play in the car and then he printed off the words so I could read along. So fun!

So far I’ve been smiling with the Beach Boys, crying with Carole King, and singing along (in my 2-tone deaf girl singing voice!) with Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. Watch out Nashville, here I come!

What I’m writing:

I finished my first book, He Speaks In The Silence: finding intimacy with God by learning to listen. Loved every moment of the whole process: writing my story, editing under the guidance of a master, editing some more, editing more… and now I’m in the part the scares me most, marketing. This is the grown up version of the girl who quit Girl Scouts because selling Girl Scout cookies terrified me! More about that in a couple weeks…

I’ve just begun to write the proposal for a book that I’ve wanted to write, but couldn’t, when my children were young. Intentional: Raising Passionate Jesus Followers. It is the written version of what Phil and I teach in the conferences we have taken all over the world, plus all the files we tucked away because of time constraints.

Writing the proposal is not fun for me. I have to somehow convince a board of editors that this book is worth pouring money into, that they’ll be glad they did because thousands of parents will be clamoring for this book. Ugh. Girl Scout cookies all over again.

Where I am right now:

By the time you read this I will be in the High Sierras, camping with Phil. Yep, in a tent, a little tent. We’ll be overlooking Lake Alpine— our favorite place in the world, and I’ll have my books and files and papers spread out on the picnic table. I have all week to write and hike and think and mull and kayak and cook on a camp stove and sit by a roaring fire. No internet, no electricity, no cell service, no traffic.

Just breathtaking beauty.

Every few days we’ll drive down the mountain to the booming town of Arnold for groceries and a few minutes of cell service so we can check on the kids (who are not, by any means kids anymore, but you know that thing? Once a mom, always a mom…)

I’ve been posting pictures of God’s astounding creativity on Instagram (@dianewcomer).

What I’m learning:

That I have an assigned task to complete; that God actually designed me different on purpose. That my head-in-the-clouds dreaming is part of His design, not a flaw to overcome.

Tears well up as I write the words for you to see. I am just grasping this, finally believing the truth He says about me. I have pardoned and apologized my way through most of my life, thinking I was less-than because I’m lost in my head instead of efficiently organizing my to-do list.


I can’t wait to begin sharing what I am hearing from God about His craftsmanship in creating us the way we are… on purpose. I want you to learn alongside me, so please, stay tuned.

If you haven’t already, sign up to have posts delivered straight to your in-box. I don’t want you to miss what’s ahead… I dare to think that what I’m hearing is for you too.

From my heart,


P.S. Tell me, what is your favorite place in the world? Better yet, send me a picture via Instagram (@dianewcomer) with the hashtag #myfavoriteplaceintheworld.