Live Simply

How We Do Christmas

I come from a family that isn't super fond of Christmas in general. If you ask my three siblings, they'll tell you we're all a little bah humbug about it. The season often feels a bit too hyped up and materialistic and stressful. There are so many expectations of presents and presence all around that sometimes nixing the whole thing sounds pleasant. But then I had kids. And the joy that small…
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Love Deeply

When the Unthinkable Happens

The news far away and close to home is often unbelievably tragic. This summer I took a nap and had a nightmare about an acquaintance whose son had recently died. I couldn't find any words to say to him and woke up panicked. Especially since one of our kiddos tripped and fell into a lake the day before my dream. (All was fine: it was very shallow and said kid was quickly plucked out…
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Food

Use the Mixing Bowls

We have this set of vintage pyrex nesting mixing bowls from the 1950s. My mom had  two sets and handed one over when we got married. According to etsy, they are going for about $170. That is, if we had all four of them. And they were in perfect condition. But we don't. And they're not. But every time my mom is over and sees them she tells me, "You really shouldn't…
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As a Grownup

November Wrap Up

Stuff we did and loved in November. In Real Life We raked a whole lot of leaves in November. We have several huge trees in our yard that gave us hours of raking fun. Well, at least hours of jumping fun. We had Dan's staff team and their families over earlier this month so we raked up a huge pile of leaves for the kids (and some of the adults)…
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As a Grownup

Four Things I Learned in November

My 3-year old's rendition of a sea turtle Once every 108 years, you gotta be flexible I had just written in October about the need for our family to slow down. And then the Cubs won the World Series. Woohoo! And with friends we were missing in Chicago and a victory parade to watch, how could we say no to a quick trip? We went and had a blast and it…
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Love Deeply

Keeping them Safe

The other day my daughter was flipping through a World Vision catalog in the car, trying to see if she had enough money to buy a rabbit or a soccer ball for another family. When suddenly she stopped and gasped and said she knew what we needed to do. As we pulled into our driveway she showed me the picture with the title, "Safety for a girl who has been…
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Faith

There Will Be Days

There will be days when we wonder if anything good will come out of this hard work of parenting. Days when one kid complains that her dress isn't fancy enough and the other complains about leftover pizza and you wonder where you've gone wrong. Days when the constant bickering and occasional spitting make you cry in overwhelmed wonder at the task of raising decent human beings. On these days, may we…
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