Via Amazon: “In lucid, compelling, and often poetic prose, the writer tells the story of a do-it-yourself award-winning transformation of the ‘ugliest house on the block,’ a one-hundred-year-old Victorian in the Strathmore section of Syracuse, NY, to the ‘most beautiful house in the city,’ the kind of creative activity that can lift the spirit and heal the heart.
The almost mystical ‘call’ to ‘do’ this house propelled the writer, who discovered in the ripping out and tearing up, restoring and replacing, turning ugly into beautiful, that she was giving voice to a cry of the heart, a yearning to explore and penetrate the painful reality and confusion of growing up in an Amish-Mennonite family that produced her and three ‘mentally ill’ siblings.
The writer moves from saws and measuring tapes and false ceilings to matters of spirit, psyche, and heart. How does one rework, repair or fix a wounded psyche? Her musings and explorations are informed by a lifetime of reading; Willie Loman, Huck Finn, Viktor Frankl, Job, Simone Weil and Ernest Becker are among them many voices that join in the articulation of this story, as the renovation of the house morphs into the renovation of the heart or psyche, as the physical labor, the reading, and the creative work become the renovators.”
About the Author
Mary Hershberger (Kauffman) was educated at Hesston College, Hesston, Kansas; Bethel College in Newton, Kansas; and Purdue University. She taught English literature for more than 35 years, with the Peace Corps in Nigeria, in Washington D.C., Lincoln and Omaha Nebraska, and in suburban Syracuse NY.
She has three grown children and lives in Syracuse NY where she has a small rental business and has renovated more than 20 homes.