stories from the oaks | anne

healing generational devastations. binding up wounds. building up. claiming land in victory. standing victoriously on the battlefields of life. proclaiming freedom from bondage, from captivity. comforting those who mourn. anointing with sweet smelling oils. we are the oaks of righteousness. a planting of the Lord. we are deeply rooted. we stand firm. we share our stories of grace and healing and restoration and revival and beauty.

these are the stories from the oaks.


anne whitehouse’s story

as we search for favor in our every day life, we are to be obedient to the call.

That statement has defined me more over the last 2 years than ever before. And thus the journey began: A couple of years ago my husband and I left wonderful jobs, our family, a wonderful church, and the most beautiful valley in Virginia, to pursue a cry in our hearts. Believe me, nothing felt right about this move. My heart felt broken and tears were an everyday accompaniment. Except that still small voice, that kept reciting, “won’t you walk with me in obedience?” And so, we walked. Not knowing anyone or anything about this city we moved to, we continued with our day-to-day things. I found a church, I volunteered at a Dream Center and worked sorting in the clothing closet and cafe with and for the homeless. I wore my heart on my sleeve and loved on God’s children as He started showing us WHY this walk of obedience was going to change our lives.

Meanwhile, my husband worked in a very oppressive area. We heard and read stories daily on murders, robberies, and rape just blocks from his employment. He wanted to make a difference…he tried everyday. “What if this is our mission field and we are to shine our light in this darkness?” he would say. And so, we continued this walk…

Until one day we realized this doesn’t have anything to do with us. God did not send us out to get rich, or to save the world, He told us to do something and we were doing it. And when we felt peaceful enough in this walk of obedience we asked Him why…and the fruit and favor began to flow. He had plans for our lives and He had plans for our children, and little by little He revealed the WHY.

Walking with God because He tells you to finally felt right. Our children were seeing favor upon favor in their lives and it is still going on to this day. We recently moved back to our sweet little valley and we continue to see His favor. Everyday is a walk to follow him. Even when it doesn’t feel completely right.

It is not always about you. God is the Father of all, and His love is for all His children. Let Him call you into experiencing His favor via a walk of obedience.

“He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless”
Isaiah 40:29
thank you for sharing your story of favor, anne. and for such encouragement! i am honored and blessed to call you family. now, can we please live closer to each other? thanks!
if you are interested in sharing your story, send me an email {} and we will get things going.

go shorty, it’s your birthday

oh boy. this has been such a splendiferous weekend. it was everything that i wanted a thirtieth birthday to be. the perfect mix of celebration and family gatherings and relaxation and pampering and alone time with my man. sigh.

we packed a whole lot into a few days. and i am still coming down from the sugar high. i felt so gosh darn spoiled and overwhelmed by the thoughtfulness and generosity of the people in my life. here’s a smattering of moments from my big 30 including baseball and family meals and my birthday haul. my people know me so well. everything was PERFECT.

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3-0 you are a-ok.

thanks for celebrating with me, family and friends!

birthday date night


hello from the bonafide thirty year old! i gotta tell ya, this whole thirties business has been pretty fab so far. i am digging it. in addition to family fun and suuuuper wild partying {haha, wink} i really wanted to enjoy a date night with my man. an evening to relax and savor yummy food and reflect and talk about hopes and plans and goals for this fresh decade. oh, and you gotta have some killer dessert.

and for all that and more, the only spot for us is citizen public house. it is kind of our thing. and so, we dropped miss elinor and hit the town, good and early. it is way better to stake your claim on the primo booth seat and settle into the evening before the crowds arrive. we like a clutter-free restaurant so we feel like we’ve got the joint all to ourselves… and then, we can go a little nuts with the social hour prices before diving into main courses and dessert. it makes the evening feel so much longer.

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it was such a perfect evening. i mean, the fries and ketchup alone were magic. oh, and that dessert. wowza. i love date nights. and the first date night of my thirties was utter perfection. off to a great start.

#swankyjamesvincent giveaway winner


hip, hip, hooray!


is the winner of the james vincent design co. GIVEAWAY!

congratulations! send me an email {} as soon as possible so i can get all your info and get store credit lined up so you can shop, shop, shop!


trois. zéro.


excusez moi while i get my party on. today is the big day! thirty. 30. three. zero. and now, i am off to enjoy some breakfast and open presents. how fun are presents? already feeling so spoiled. gosh.

get ready for rachel 3.0

so excited for this new decade of life.

thanks so much for being a part of my everyday and my celebrations. la vie est belle.

toodle-oo for now. i will be back tomorrow with more #madameswankyturns30 giveaway winners AND pics from my bday weekend.