Loving on Others with Guest Gina Smith

We just returned last night from a whirlwind surprise trip to Charlotte, NC to see our two oldest kids. It was fabulous but it is good to be home!

I tried to keep up with reading all of your comments from over the weekend on my phone. So many of you loved how yesterday’s guest, Renee Swope, hosted our family in a very simple way–take out pizza, store-bought cookies & watermelon!

Now, our guest today gives you some ways to love on others in your life who drop in. And, a few ideas for loving on family members or even taking your love on the road!

Meet the clever Gina Smith!

Gina Smith has served alongside her husband at a small Christian college right outside of Washington DC for almost 20 years, where she serves as the Dean of Women.

She  previously dedicated her days to serving her family, but now that her children are both college students she fully enjoys her calling to mentor to women and young women in person and on-line with her blog Keepin’ It Real!

Gina has been a mom for 21 years and she and Brian have been married for 23 years. Gina also writes for RooMag.com, MomLife Today, and Internet Cafe Devotions.

Now, here ‘s Gina!

Over the years, I have taken advantage of the weeks before and after Valentine’s day, and I have collected things that I can use when I serve those who sit at my table.  I love heart shaped things!

I have purchased heart shaped cake pans, a heart shaped pancake griddle pan, a bundt cake pan that has hearts on the top of it, heart shaped cookie cutters, and ice cube trays that make heart shaped ice! I stock up on gift bags with hearts on them, heart shaped sprinkles, and anything else unique that I can find with a heart on it!   I love all of it!

Here are some ways that I am able to serve those who are in my home, and show them I love them:

~ On a cold day we serve hot chocolate with whipped cream and heart shaped sprinkles.

~ I’ll choose to cook  lasagna in a heart shaped pan or I’ll bake a cake in the heart bundt pan.

~ On a Saturday morning I make heart shaped pancakes.

~ If my daughter is having a rough week, I fill a gift bag decorated with hearts  with her favorite Bath and Body Works body spray and lotion.

~ When my son has been working a lot, and I haven’t seen him much, I put a bag of chocolate kisses on his pillow.

~ When my husband comes in from working out, I fill a glass with heart shaped ice cubes and fill it with water for him.

~ If I know someone needs encouragement, sometimes I will put a small candle, a tea bag and some chocolate kisses in a clear gift bag, tie a ribbon around it, attach a heart shaped card to the ribbon and give it to them when I see them next.

~ I love to look for any excuse to use my heart shaped purchases!

The heart shape symbolizes love.  I want love to be my theme.  Love for others. Love for my family.  I want them to know they are loved and cherished.

When people come into my home, I want them to leave feeling like they were loved. Life outside these four walls can be really hard.  There is pressure and stress, and people walk through my front door who are tired and weary.

I want my home to be a haven.  I want to celebrate and love on people, especially the precious people that have been loaned to me for a few years–My husband and children.

Having these things on hand makes it easy for me to pull them out and make an unexpected guest feel like we have been waiting for them!

Thanks, Gina!

Today’s giveaway is a $15 Target gift card and a signed copy of my book, The Complete Guide to Getting & Staying Organized. So, you can feel more on top of your game and be able to buy a few items to help you love on others too!

Since we are nearing the end of our study, {sniff, sniff} to be entered to win, leave us a comment with one change you want to make in your life as a result of this study.

ALSO:  This Friday’s idea swap & share will be on the concept I mention in the book called “hospitality on the road”. Be thinking of a clever way to reach out and love on someone that doesn’t involve your home but involves you going to them!

REMEMBER: We are also interacting over at Karen Ehman’s Book Studies on Facebook. Click here to “like” the page & join us.

photo credit


  1. Throughout this study, I have gone from never wanting guests to now inviting people over daily! I want to be more organized!! I can not stress how often I leave the house forgetting something. Most of the time, it’s my phone. A few times it has been a diaper bag (or thing missing from the diaper bag), food I meant to take some one, birthday presents. When I am at home, I am constantly misplacing things too! I sit my phone down and it’s gone for a day. It’s crazy. I use to be so organized and now that I have children, I can’t seem to get back on track! This book will help me immensly!

  2. Be genuinely welcoming and happy people are here with us. I want my kids to feel happy to bring people over too.

  3. I have been working at stocking up on the little things that make a big difference. Also reaching out with cards, thanks (on a more timely basis) and trying to be able to be available to help others in any way that I can!

  4. The change I want to make us perspective. Letting my heart for those I come in contact with shine through and not worry about the size of my home or the work of “entertaining” my guests.

  5. Wow! I think even without having received my book yet, it has helped me to look out of myself and look to the needs of others. I can’t wait to read the book. These blogs have given me wonderful ideas to say “I love you” to my family and friends.

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