Skip to main content

Posts

I was a perfectionist. Then I had kids.

Life is messy. Sticky. Goopy.

Some days, I feel I could run a cleaning business. Based on the number of hours spent washing, changing, tidying, scrubbing, folding, and wiping, I often feel that parenting is just one giant exercise in cleaning up.

Before I had kids, my house was fairly clean. My car smelled fairly nice. My schedule was fairly organized. My life was – for the most part – under control.

And control was the key. Control allowed me to manage my responsibilities. Control gave me the power to change my circumstances. I liked control.

Actually, I loved control.

As an ENTJ (the Meyers-Briggs personality assessment is spot on for me), it felt fulfilling to have a sense of control in my life. That’s why parenting was such a major adjustment. I suddenly lost control of so many variables – my time, my space, and even my feelings (Okay, why do Subaru commercials have to be so emotional? I think I cried at every single one of them when I was pregnant).

In the early years of parenting…
Recent posts

Letters to Julia: Toasted Bagels with Cream Cheese

September 6, 2015
Dear Julia,
Today was a full day. We went to church this morning, went shopping, attended a birthday party this afternoon, then came home to a messy house with loads of laundry needing to be done. We opted to play outside with bubbles and sidewalk chalk. The laundry can wait.
After bath time, you brushed your teeth while I brushed your long brown curly hair. Although you’re five years old, you haven’t had a haircut yet – maybe because I know those ringlet curls won’t come back after your first haircut.
I kneeled down next to your bed to tuck you in. As I kissed your forehead, I noticed your face wasn’t as happy as usual, so I asked what was wrong. You said, “My tummy hurts.” I asked, “What would help it feel better?”
“Toasted bagels with cream cheese.”
You didn’t even have to think twice about that. You said you were still hungry even though you ate plenty for dinner. Here’s one of those tough choices that moms face: 1.) Should I say that it’s already past bedtime …

4 Traits of Highly-Engaging Social Media Posts

Digital media consumption is at an all-time high. Millenials no longer rely on traditional and mainstream media producers for the latest news and information. Social media is literally revolutionizing the way people do research and engage with the world. When consumers are formulating opinions about a brand, they rely on peer-to-peer reviews more than high-budget advertising. And they can go directly to social media to get a feel for a brand's true colors before investing in its products or services. With so much information competing for attention on social media, how can you develop a keen strategy for reaching consumers with relevant content? Here are 4 tips: Be succinct. You have exactly 2 seconds to engage your audience. Make your point and make it fast. Save the fine print and flowery details for later.Use imagery. Social media posts with photos capture more engagement than posts without pictures. Your photos should be relevant to your content, and preferably include people.…

I want to be a butterfly

December 19, 2014
Dear Julia,
Earlier this week, you and I had a conversation that I’ll never forget. You’re 4-and-a-half (although I feel like I just brought you home from the hospital… I swear I only blinked). You’re so full of life. Your energy and enthusiasm make me smile every day!
We needed groceries. Badly. So we hopped in the car and drove to Sam’s Club. It was one of those evenings when I didn’t have much time after work to make dinner, so we opted for pizza at Sam’s. After ordering a few slices of pepperoni pizza (you may only weigh 31 pounds, but you can put away an entire slice of Sam’s pizza by yourself), I sat down across from you and began cutting your pizza into little bite-size pieces.
You asked me how my day at work went.
By the way, that’s not typical for a preschooler. Most 4-year-olds are only interested in Dora the Explorer. Not you. You like to ask questions. You’re a relationship builder. You care about people’s thoughts and ideas, and you carry on conversatio…

First World Problems

Matthew 6:25-27, 31-34 “Therefore I tell you, do not worryabout your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.Are you not much more valuable than they?Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.But seek first his kingdomand his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."
Last week I was driving to work, sitting in traffic on US 29, when a lady going 50-60 mph slammed into the back of my car, effectively bending the steel frame and warp…

Ben Sauer

This story really messed me up. Rarely do I question God’s goodness.

Rarely am I moved to tears by the circumstances of a complete stranger.
But reading the story of Ben Sauer has me completely baffled and broken.
·How could a loving, compassionate God allow a sweet 5-year-old boy to suffer and die from a cancerous brain tumor?
·In light of the support from his New York community and media coverage around the world, wouldn’t it have been better for God to miraculously heal this little boy, and show Himself strong on the child’s behalf?
·How do Ben’s parents find such strength? If my child was battling brain cancer, I’d be a complete basket case. But the Sauer family seems to be a pinnacle of grace.
In February 2014, Ben was diagnosed with a rare, inoperable brain tumor. Its growth would eventually impair his ability to walk, talk, and function as it spread to the areas of his brain that controlled those capabilities. He and his twin brother turned 5 on May 5th, 2014. Ben took his last bre…

Perspective from 40,000 Feet

Was that coffee and breakfast pastry really worth $16.42?
Yes. Yes it was.
With a 5:29 a.m. flight, I needed it. Nevermind the captive-audience airport prices. I’m caffeinated and my blood-sugar is normalized. It was worth every penny.
The roaring hum of the jet engine outside my window creates a soothing ambiance for reflection. The in-flight Wi-Fi doesn’t seem to have enough bandwidth for the planeful of passengers using it, so I’m closing the reports and turning to my creative outlet – writing.
It’s funny how a little altitude can give you such perspective. It’s refreshing to get a birds-eye view of things as you fly over. Cities, rivers, mountains – even the Grand Canyon – seem so small from this height.
Isn’t that just like our lives? Our mountains can seem so big when we’re on the ground – in the midst of our troubles – looking up at the enormous tasks that lie ahead. But when we’re above the clouds, over the mist and the fog, a clear perspective can change everything.
We’ve al…