December 30, 2023

I’ve recently started reading a book by Wendy Watson Nelson called “What Would a Holy Woman Do?”. At the beginning of her book, she talks about inviting some friends to do an experiment. She asked them to take three days and choose one area to focus on living as a holy woman would and report back. It was so moving reading about their experiences that I decided that I would accept her challenge and spend the next three days trying... Read more

December 12, 2023

Until I was twelve, we lived in the Bible Belt, in southern Illinois along the border of Kentucky. There were so many different religions that all felt like they were the only ones who were right. But kids don’t see barriers like that. We loved playing with some friends down the block. Their Dad was a Pastor and their church was literally in their backyard. It was well-manicured, and a beautiful place to play. One day, when I was 8,... Read more

December 3, 2023

This past weekend my son introduced my father-in-law to his favorite YouTuber- Mark Rober. My father-in-law is not an internet-savvy guy and had never heard of the epic backyard squirrel obstacle courses. And he had never heard of elephant toothpaste. My Mom was eager to tell him all about her favorite Mark Rober prank- the porch pirate-deterring glitter bombs. And as he watched, thanks to Mark Rober, he (and all of you too) got a great laugh and learned something... Read more

November 22, 2023

Christmas traditions are among the best memories I have of my childhood. And now that I am a mother, finding new traditions that our family enjoys has been fun. In the past, we did several traditions that just didn’t work for us. So this year I am on the hunt for new ones.  For the past couple of years, we have done a couple of failed traditions. First was an advent calendar with chocolates in it. But people forgot to... Read more

November 18, 2023

One of my favorite Christmas traditions is seeing all the Christmas lights. When my son was young we went to Temple Square often to see the incredible display of lights they always put on. It’s awe-inspiring! One year we found a new thing called Giving Machines at Temple Square. My son was really into goats at the time, and we got a kick out of gifting someone a baby goat.  Well, guess what?! Those Giving Machines that were a hit... Read more

November 12, 2023

All of us have been distracted from time to time. And there is nothing wrong with periodic distraction. But recently I have discovered I’ve been sucked into distraction with a capital D. The kind that becomes your whole reality and takes over your time, and you wake up wondering where all your day has gone and you’ve gotten nothing done. Several sources can be blamed for my distractions. YouTube Shorts is a big one. I will check it out while... Read more

October 29, 2023

Before we came to Ireland I’d heard that a lot of folks here have celiacs. When people show up at the ER with stomach pain, that is the first test they run. So I wasn’t worried about trying to visit and be Gluten-Free. Ireland is amazing at labeling everything with 14 different allergens. Every restaurant has a book listing ingredients for everything they serve and labels the allergens clearly.  In these ways, they are ahead of the US in food... Read more

October 24, 2023

Our family vacations have always looked different than most. Our sweet autistic son highly influences what we do. I remember when we were in Hawaii when my son was 5, that we had to go swimming every day, or he was beside himself. We didn’t see much beyond the hotel property.  Even though that could have been disappointing, my son was so entranced by small things that when I slowed down and saw things through his eyes, I didn’t care... Read more

October 18, 2023

We are enjoying a vacation in Ireland before my husband speaks at a conference in Dublin for work. It seemed the perfect time to see an amazing place with personal family significance. My mother’s family is from Ireland, and I have always wanted to come. But there were a few things I wish I had known before traveling to Ireland. I did extensive searches online before our trip, so this is not an uneducated list. But as most everyone missed... Read more

October 2, 2023

This October 10 is World Mental Health Day. As I reflected on this news, I remembered a time when I truly struggled with my life and the changes in it. God was my strength at that time. And He has been my support ever since. My faith truly helps my mental health. And I’d like to share how I found God as a teenager. Though it’s never too late to start your journey with God, I am grateful mine started... Read more

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