When Can I Choose Happiness?

Isolated Old BucketI have thought a lot on the topic of happiness lately. Maybe it’s because I’ve felt it lacking in my life. My days have been filled lately with absolutely nothing more than the duties of motherhood; I’ve had no time to pursue the things I love.

There is no service that takes as much sacrifice as being a mother, and although service can bring peace and fulfillment, it is also one of the most difficult things a person will ever do.

Very often mothers are given the lecture to fill their own bucket so that they can give to others. I’ve heard that all of my life, and I completely agree with it. My question, though, is how empty does my bucket have to be before I can fill it? Does it Continue reading

Nailing Jello To a Tree

jelloTrying to work while kids are around is akin to nailing jello to a tree… or raking leaves in a tornado… or meditating at a death metal concert. That’s why any mother loves those precious hours when the kids are at school to accomplish things. I can usually get a whole lot of cleaning done as well as the bills paid. The problem with the job of a mom is that with the endless supply of work, we have to continue when the kids are at home.

I remember vividly trying to fold laundry with a one-year old. I often fold laundry on my bed Continue reading

A Life for People, Not Things

familyI grew up as the oldest of ten children. My mother was a stay-at-home mom and my dad was a teacher. As you can imagine, we didn’t have much money at all. My parents worked so hard to provide a good life for us, and all of the things we needed. We always had a big garden and spent our summers weeding, harvesting, and canning the food. We also were able to gleen the potato fields around where we lived. We were blessed to always have enough food, but anything else was a little more difficult to come by. We were careful to save anything that might be of use to us. We saved empty containers, clothes that could be used as hand-me-downs, bags of all kinds, anything, really. That kind of thriftiness allowed us to always have things that we needed.

However, actions lead to habits. I was so good at saving things that could be of use, that when I got married I continued Continue reading

My Deep, Dark Secret

MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAI’ve had a secret addiction for quite a while now. It probably started about a year ago as a way of managing stress and frustration. Recently, though, it has become more pronounced. I’m turning to it more often, and I find every way possible to justify it.

Just this past week, I let my husband in on this deep, dark secret. My deep, dark Continue reading

Sharing: How I Saved My Marriage

weddingI enjoy reading almost as much as I enjoy writing.  I follow many writers and their work.  Each Saturday (or Sunday) I will share an article that particularly touched me this past week.

Marriage has been on my mind a lot. A whole lot. Partly because I love my husband so much, and partly because I feel so discouraged about how good of a wife I am to him due to some crazy circumstances in our lives.  This article was wonderful. My husband and I went through almost this exact same sort of change in our marriage. (And who doesn’t love Richard Paul Evan’s writings?)

So, here is the article for this week: How I Saved My Marriage


Our Foster Care Family

It is said thaJim and Celese 2010 053t being a mother is the hardest job.  I’d like to propose that the title goes to a job that is actually more difficult: being a mother to children other than your own.  I would include in that category step-parents, guardians, and foster parents.
My husband and I have been foster parents for over a year now.  It has been one of the most difficult years of our lives.  The most common question people ask us is ‘Why?”  Why would you do something so difficult?  Why would you Continue reading

Sharing: 3 Things Kids Need to Know About 50 Shades of Grey

grey streaming light backgroundI enjoy reading almost as much as I enjoy writing.  I follow many writers and their work.  Each Saturday (or Sunday) I will share an article that particularly touched me this past week.

I’ve wanted to write an article about this exact topic, but I never seemed to write it well. Kristen A. Jenson from Porn Proof Kids said everything that has been on my heart about this. Her honesty and strong stance are exactly what I wanted to see in a column like this. Click on the link below to read this powerful and insightful article.

3 Things Kids Need to Know about 50 Shades of Grey

I Really Lived

servingOne of the women that I adore and admire was Marjorie Pay Hinkley. She was positive, and loving, and just a saint in my eyes. Of all of her quotes, the one that stayed with me the most was when she said,

“I don’t want to drive up to the pearly gates in a shiny sports car, wearing beautifully, tailored clothes, my hair expertly coiffed, and with long, perfectly manicured fingernails.
I want to drive up in a station wagon that has mud on the wheels from taking kids to scout camp.
I want to be there with a smudge of peanut butter on my Continue reading

Let’s Stop Giving Our Crap to the Poor

crapI enjoy reading almost as much as I enjoy writing.  I follow many writers and their work.  Each Saturday (or Sunday) I will share an article that particularly touched me this past week.

It’s been a while since I’ve shared something.  Developing routines for my writing is going slowly.  However, this article has been on my browser for weeks, just waiting for me to share.  I suppose that the time I spent in Ethiopia changed the way that I see charity.  It also changed the way that I see the wealth in America.  I used to think that my family was poor, but once I returned home I had a new perspective on all that the Lord has blessed me with.

Kristen from wearethatfamily.com perfectly wrote about my thoughts on this.  Click on the link to read this wonderfully insightful article: “Let’s Stop Giving Our Crap to the Poor.”

Involvement at the Risk of Error

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMy Mother recently sent me an email that included this phrase, “However, with involvement comes the risk of doing something wrong.” Although she was referencing parenting and the risk of making mistakes as you raise a child, I found it applicable in other parts of my life.

I’m the type of person who jumps into things head-first. While it usually ends in bumps and bruises, I rarely let fear hold me back. This past weekend was no exception. I am a singer, and although I feel somewhat comfortable singing classical and opera music, I feel utterly terrified at singing anything popular. The problem with singing music that everyone knows is Continue reading