An Invitation for Some Quiet Relief

path near a patch of flowers

Perhaps you’ve noticed that things look a little different over here? That’s because I recently completed a full re-design of my website and added some things that will make it more fun and user friendly for all of you (like easier email signup – which you’ll find at the bottom of the page. I may have happy danced over that one). If you’ve been around for a while, you won’t see a big change in content. Rather, I simply updated the look of my website to make my purpose as a blogger more obvious to new readers. This is my third […]

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What Happens When We Face Our Fears

airplane waiting to take off

Four weeks ago today, I sat on the floor of an airport terminal, staring out the window and clutching my rosary. Outside, a Boeing 777 – painted like a scene from Lord of the Rings – waited for us to board. We were preparing to make the flight from LAX to Auckland, twelve hours over nothing but ocean. I hate to fly. I’m a nightmare of a seat mate–ask anyone who’s flown with me. I could get into the nitty-gritty details of the origin of my fear, but that’s a different can of worms. Basically, I don’t do well when I’m […]

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Moms Need a Village Too

words on a purple background

I picked up the phone to tell my best friend that life has me in a choke hold again this week, and by the way, how was your vacation? She tells me how they missed their return flight and made it home two days later with a kid in the throes of a nasty ear infection. Then I tell her I’m parked outside Walgreens with two sets of infected ears asleep in my backseat. And I’m so tired I could lean my seat back and join them if that amoxicillin isn’t bottled in the next five minutes. “Oh, the joys […]

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How to Find Peace When Life Overwhelms You

Yesterday afternoon I put Allie down for a nap and came out to the kitchen to stare at my calendar and panic for a few minutes. I have a lot going on right now, you guys, and it’s starting to make my head spin. While most of it is fun and exciting, it’s also daunting. Especially for a high-strung worry wart like me. Just to give you a bit of context, this is the short version of what’s going on my life right now: I hired a professional tech person to revamp my website so I can finally turn this gig into a business. […]

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How to Beat the Winter Slump When Nothing Else Helps

sun rising behind trees

Hey there, fellow winter warrior. This time of year is pretty brutal, isn’t it? It’s cold. It’s dark. Our noses are stuffed up; the heating bills keep rolling in; and our kids are behaving like caged animals. If you follow me on Instagram, then you know what kind of morning I had yesterday. And while a morning like that is never ideal, I imagine I wouldn’t have stressed about it on a sunny June day. I assume most people can relate to some amount of winter despair. But for those of us who’s emotional health and outlook on life are […]

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Some Things to Remember When We’re Tempted to Judge

We walked into the library and made our way to the children’s room. Allie immediately went for the train set (she always does) while I found a safe place for my laptop case. I joined her on the floor and we started constructing an oval-shaped track. Another mom showed up with a preschool-aged boy and an infant sleeping in a stroller. (Until then we were the only ones in the children’s area, which is extremely rare). She parked her stroller, sat a table, and sent the little boy off to play. A few minutes later, I heard him struggling behind […]

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5 Reasons You’re Not Keeping Your New Year’s Resolution and One Thing to Try Instead

plants poking through snowy ground

I already ditched my New Year’s resolution. I don’t know who I was kidding. Originally, I decided that I would get up early at least three mornings a week and go for a jog. It sounded like a good idea at first. Plus, my kids are finally sleeping through the night pretty consistently and I’m running out of excuses for not working out. Still, before I even set my alarm on the first Monday of the New Year, I knew I wasn’t going to get up. After many years of failed resolutions, I started wondering what I was doing wrong. Seriously, […]

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Hope for Years with Rocky Endings

flower blooming in the snow

I was laying on the bathroom floor in my in-laws’ basement when Matt called to tell me there was at least three inches of water in ours. We had gone to his parents’ house the day before to wait out the winter storm after two trees fell in our front yard. Uprooted from the weight of the ice, they ripped down the power lines to our house. Corn Belt said it could be hours, days even, before power was restored to every customer. So we packed up the kids and drove 20 minutes to my in-laws’ house. To say that […]

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The Story of My Child’s Recurring Fevers

teddy bear with a cold

They tell me one of the best things I can do is limit the stress level in our home, and I think surely the Lord gave her the wrong mama. Because Stress is my middle name, and I don’t know if I’ll ever master another way of life. Every time she comes to me with an aching head and a rising temp, I wonder if this is at least partly my doing. Have I been too impatient? Did I expect too much? Did I hurry her along too often? And although deep down I know this isn’t my fault, I […]

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When You’re Not the Hostess with the Mostest

Thanksgiving place setting

Days before Thanksgiving, my sister-in-law sent me the sweetest email. I had messaged her first asking her to bring a side dish. In her response she mentioned that her family was looking forward to spending the holiday with us. Then she complimented my sense of hospitality and I was flattered… but also totally confused. She must be thinking of someone else. Because I had always equated a good sense of hospitality with the “Hostess with the Mostest” type. We all know them well–everything is beautiful and perfectly coordinated–from the place settings to the serving spoons to the charger plates. Even the […]

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