ABOUT

I'm so glad you dropped in on this little space where I draw and write! Marydean is my real first name, but everyone calls me Mary! I'm the daughter of a Southern Baptist Navy Chaplain and one of three girls. I never really had a hometown to call my own until I moved here to the Shenandoah Valley when I  got married eight years ago.

My husband and I have been blessed with three amazing kiddos, two of whom we now homeschool!




My blog and business name was inspired by this verse:

this  Printable HERE
I grew up in church with a love for God and His Word, but it wasn't until my college years that I finally understood the finality of God's grace towards me and that what Jesus accomplished for me on the cross was enough. It is a done deal and there is nothing I can add or take away from. All that's left is faith (and that too is a gift: Ephesians 2:8-9). The weight of performing and proving myself was lifted (although I attempt try to drag it around still).
The years that followed were a time of deepening for me, some through the pain of depression and difficulty in finding my way in the career world, and some through other "stretching" experiences. I served with a mission agency in Bangkok, Thailand for two and half years as an English teacher. While living in another culture was a great challenge, it was also fruitful time of studying God's Word in a way I'd never done before. What was a spark of passion for teaching in general, and teaching God's Word specifically, was fanned even more.

It seems that when I finally began to understand God's grace toward me (oh, but still learning that daily!), He moved on to teaching me how to show it. In answer to some desperate prayers, God gave me an amazing husband! The years of our marriage have been sweet, but growth has been hard. Our struggles have let out the tide and laid bare my selfishness, self-righteousness, and pride. Adding our sweet children to the mix has only provided more opportunity for growth. 


I started off as a "working mom," teaching ESL at a local college after my first daughter was born, but soon felt the strain of being pulled in so many directions. My husband and I decided to try to make it work for me to stay home. It was around that time that I began to learn graphic design with a very basic version of Photoshop Elements. I had a background in art as an Art minor in college and have always loved art, but never considered it as more than a hobby.

Being at home afforded me the opportunity to practice art by doing some graphic design for our church. From there, I started my Etsy print shop. 



The blog came about when I began to share doodles on my Facebook page. I'm inspired by God's perfect Word and the hope that it brings me and would often doodle my "drawings" from the Bible. A friend suggested I turn my doodles into blog posts. What began as doodle posts then reignited a love of writing (I was an English writing major at Gardner-Webb University).


My days are often long and filled with my own weaknesses and failings, but this is where I experience God's grace and find encouragement to share with you here.
I feel a calling to get to the heart of our struggles, and encourage women in the Gospel through God's Word. I want to create visual tools that help you encourage and teach others through God's Word.

I wouldn't be here at all if it wasn't for our church. The grace that we've been shown and have learned from growing together with this body of Christ over the last eight years has rooted me deeply in the Gospel. I know I've got much to learn, but I'm so grateful for the freedom I now know in Jesus. 

So, that's the story of how I got here!  You can also read THIS POST on why I blog (written one year in). I truly do appreciate you stopping by and hope that you're encouraged by what you read here.

If you want to see some glimpses of my daily life and art, you can find me on Instagram @marydeandraws (or you can see the feed at the bottom of this page). 




GOALS FOR THIS BLOG:
  • To draw from God's truth and grace, and then pour that out on others. Matthew 10:27:  "What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops."
  • Share truths in a unique, visual way.
  • Exalt my Jesus and remind myself and anyone who happens on the blog just HOW GOOD HE REALLY IS.
  • Share free printables that equip you to study and think on God's Word so that it can transform lives
GOALS FOR MY SHOP AND BUSINESS:
  • Create art that is true to my hand-drawn style, and that is colorful, sweet, fun, and filled with salty truth.

  • Create tools to help you teach your children and encourage your friends 
  • Come alongside small business owners or bloggers and partner with them to create custom illustrations that represent their unique vision and mission
Lovely portrait photography by Aubrey Gee Photography

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