(This article comes from The Book Room - The Christian Post's new section for book enthusiasts and authors.)
After a second failed marriage, Emmy-award winning news correspondent and author Hattie Kauffman began to re-examine her life – from her childhood living in poverty with alcohol-addicted parents to her teenage years living with a kind aunt who taught her the 23rd Psalm.
That memory helped Kauffman, who describes in her book Falling into Place feeling an aching emptiness inside despite her successful career, to recognize the redemptive work God had been doing throughout her entire life and ultimately find her faith.
Falling into Place: A Memoir of Overcoming gives readers an inside look into the events that shaped this remarkable woman who thought she'd left the ghosts of childhood behind her.
Here is an excerpt of from the second chapter of Falling Into Place:
“Money, we need money,” John whispers intensely.
He is pressed ﬂat on his belly, peering under the couch. Lilly, on
her knees in a pile of clothes on the ﬂoor, digs through pockets. So
far, they have two pennies and a nickel.
“Help out,” Lilly growls at Annie, who stands, stretches, and
ambles over to the table to look under the dirty dishes.
“Not there.” Lilly sighs. “Get over here and help me lift up the
I sit with the Kids on the couch, unsure what the hunt for money
means. Carla hugs her knees. Lotta picks a scab. Baby sucks her
thumb, and wiggles her way onto my lap. I’m about to ask how
come they’re looking for money, when Lilly springs to her feet in
a little dance.
John jumps up to check.
“We’re rich,” Annie marvels, which makes Lilly elbow her.
John counts the money: one dime, one nickel, and two pennies.
John and Lilly look at each other and nod. In their silent language,
they’ve come to a conclusion. Without saying anything to the rest
of us, they walk out the front door.
“What’s going on?” I ask Annie.
“Baby’s ﬁrst birthday, stupid,” she says, squeezing me o! the
couch, while at the same time lifting Baby from my lap. “Put the
dirty dishes in the sink. Get this place ready. We’re having a party.”
After a while, John and Lilly return, carrying a small paper bag
and hustling into the kitchen. I’m excited, pondering how a party
could ﬁt in that little bag.
“Close the shades to make it dark,” Lilly orders.
Annie pulls a chair to the window, climbs up on it, and reaches
above her head for the string that pulls the shade down.
“OK, ready,” she calls back.
John and Lilly emerge with ﬂickering light on their faces from a
used birthday candle burning in the middle of a Hostess chocolate
“Happy birthday dear B-a-a-a B-e-e-e, happy birthday to you,”
we sing quickly because the stub of candle is almost down to the
Baby doesn’t know she’s supposed to blow it out, so we do it
“Since it’s her very ﬁrst birthday,” John decrees, “she gets the
cupcake all to herself.”
“Oh . . .” The rest of us deﬂate.
“Don’t worry,” he smiles. “Two came in a pack. We’ll split the
Lilly brings the other Hostess chocolate cupcake to the table and,
with a butter knife, cuts it precisely in half. Hungrily, we watch
the movement of her hand as she divides each half into three more
slices. When all six of us have a sliver, we begin, each savoring the
taste and texture for as long as we can.
Licking my lips and each one of my ﬁngers, I turn toward Baby,
take in her chocolate-smeared chin and feel a bubbling joy. Until I
realize that no one told Baby to make a wish. She’s too young to
know on her own and no one told her. I fret at a lost chance to wish.
Learn more about Falling into Place HERE