What Is REAL?

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"What is REAL?" asked the Rabbit one day. "Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?" "Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse. "It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a really long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real." The Velveteen Rabbit is an ache-y book for me. I haven't read it in years and this morning felt a stirring to dig it out of the still-unpacked box of books in the boys' room … Read More

Pins of the Week Party #1

Pinterest Pins of the Week

Are you on Pinterest as much as I am? It's like a lovely, lovely bunch of beautiful things right there in front of you. I love the inspiration and the food. OH THE FOOD. Some people get scared of Pinterest because they feel like they have to compete or it's a bunch of people trying to be perfect. Don't let yourself get trapped in that mindset. Look at all the pretty and then make what you want. And if you're curious what the kitchen looks like just outside that lovely photo, check out my post on … Read More

15 Ways to Ruin Your Family Holiday

15 quick tips to ruin your family holiday

There are a million and one ways to have a great family holiday. You can find most of them on Pinterest. But I'm not sure why no one is talking about how to RUIN your family holiday. So many people have terrible holiday seasons---this list of 15 ways to ruin your family holiday should help you on your way. For best results? Try all of them. Then repeat. 15 Ways to Ruin Your Family Holiday 1. Make all plans without consulting any extended family. Be completely rigid and inflexible. 2. Or, … Read More

Preventing RSV This Winter

Without staying in a bubble, it can be really difficult to stay well during the sick season. Knowing about RSV is the first step to prevention.

I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for MedImmune. I received product samples to facilitate my review as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation. "I'll be right back with your test results." No matter what test results you are waiting for, those are never easy words. Especially not when it is an RSV test for your four-month old baby. I kept flashing back to her 5-day stay in the hospital two months ago with the UTI and related … Read More

LAST DAY for the Ultimate Christian Bundle!

What would you pay for 75 Christian ebooks? Everything from children's books to financial and marriage books to classics from Spurgeon and Mueller. Plus 50 sing-a-longs for kids? Today is the last day you can snag the Ultimate Christian Bundle for $34.95. And it's the ONLY time you can get it, in fact. This bundle is only available right now. RIGHT. NOW. That's not even $1 a book! What are you most excited about in the bundle? I love the sing alongs for kids plus the classic books. I LOVE … Read More

When the Clock Winds Down

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There is a clock on my mantel that does not work. It belonged to my grandmother Nanny and chimed out the hours in the house where my father grew up. The clock expert in our family tried to fix it a few years ago. "It is beyond repair," he said. "But it sure is pretty." Each clock has its own sound and song. I wish I knew the sound of my silent mantle clock. ***** The oxygen tank is now a fixture beside Lynn's bed, though she doesn't always use it. More every day, I think, but when … Read More

50+ Creative Thanksgiving Side Dish Recipes

50+ creative takes on classic side dishes and desserts

The very first time I cooked Thanksgiving meal, I went a little bit crazy. I had so manyThanksgiving side dish recipes  (plus Thanksgiving Desserts) that I couldn't hold back. I made four pies, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, rolls, and stuffing. I used 3 pounds of butter. Let me say that again: THREE POUNDS OF BUTTER. Did I mention I was cooking for three people? I spent the next few days in a food coma/food hangover, but I lived to tell the tale. I can take or … Read More

Falling Back

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Every year I have this debate in my head on the night of daylight savings time: if we are falling back, does that mean it will be lighter in the morning or DARKER? Then I sit and do math in my head (at least, it FEELS like math) and I try to imagine that it's 7pm now and that means it's actually POOF! 6pm, which means...wait---is it even light at 7pm? Then I close my eyes really hard and wonder why this is SUCH A HARD THING FOR ME TO GRASP. Every year I do this. Every year. It's like I need to … Read More

WHY Do You Want to Grow Your Blog?


Rev up your flux capacitors with me and let's time travel for a moment. (That Back the Future reference really dates me, huh?) I want you to go back to that moment when you were just about to hit "Publish" on your very first blog post ever. For some of you this was a few months or years ago. Or maybe you were a pioneer back in the LiveJournal days. Whenever that moment happened for you, I want you to recapture the feeling of excitement. Maybe you felt some trepidation or doubt, wondering who … Read More

Stop the Time Suck

blog post checklist

Recently I got an email from a blog I subscribed to with a link for preparing your blog post for optimal impact. This sounded great, so I clicked through only to find a checklist with something like 100 questions. While I'm SURE you could make an amazing blog post if you followed all the suggestions, AIN'T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT. So today is all about helping you blog without sucking away all your time (or your soul). Download my short and simple blog post checklist HERE. It is very … Read More

Take It Easy–You’re a Normal Mom.

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Is this normal? That's a question we ask each other a lot as Moms. Ex: My kid just drank from the toilet. Is that normal? Yes. (But not a great idea.) Or, My kids want to eat three breakfasts. Is this normal? Yes. (But expensive.) And maybe, especially, this question: Sometimes I don't ENJOY being a mom. Is this normal? I posted this question on my Facebook page yesterday and received and overwhelming and very encouraging YES. Yes, it IS normal. Check out HOW normal: the post reached almost … Read More