Category

Inspiration

Dear Catie… (on your sophomore year of high school)

Dear Catie… It’s a little hard to believe you’re starting over again. We moved houses. You moved schools. Sophomore year and you’re having to deal with #freshmanproblems again. It’s a bit scary—for me, at least. There’s so much at risk here. The years of high school feel like stair steps to the grand goal of...
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Be Her Mom

I write for teens and for moms, so talk to them both a lot about what’s happening in their lives. Over the past few years, something has changed. Daughters now have all the information. Like never before, they are able to use social media, YouTube, Amazon, vlogs, and Pinterest to figure out life on their own. More...
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What We Are NOT Doing This Summer

Several years ago, I visited my friend Jen at the start of the summer. Like me, she was a mom to lots of little kids, and the summer meant the fun and daunting promise of lots of free time. Like me, Jen hoped to use some of that time to organize her house. She had posted sticky...
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Christmas with Older Kids is Different

As the kids went back to school today, and our lives returned to normal, I kept thinking about the whirlwind that was December. Our kids are older now and the holiday magic changes as they grow up. I’m discovering that I enjoy Christmas with older kids more. It’s sweeter in ways I didn’t expect. Here...
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Last Summer at Eden for #NLSW

Let’s celebrate National Lutheran Schools Week with some Last Summer at Eden love. My Young Adult novel tells the story of Poppi, who wants to save Camp Eden, a beautiful place with a mysterious problem that might close it down. Check out what people are saying about Last Summer at Eden here. Or watch the (30-second) book video below. You’ll...
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Christmas Gift Guide #2 (What to Buy the Boys)

  It’s cold outside and if you live in Houston it’s crazy wet too. No problem. This weekend is the perfect time to knock out the hardest kids on your Christmas list. In our family, that’s the boys. We have a little (8 years old) and a tween (11) and I’ve searched for gifts that will...
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Dear Catie (on your first day of High School)

Oh, my sweet Catie. Today feels the most significant of all your first days of school. All those other first days—in Pre-K, and elementary, and middle school—seem like they were all leading up to today. The first day of high school feels like the first day of the rest of your life. Grades “count” now....
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When God Does That One Thing…

“For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named,  that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend...
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The Book That Almost Wasn’t….

This week our family went to dinner to celebrate my new book, Family Trees and Olive Branches. Holding this book—one that had been such a struggle to write—felt like an actual miracle. The idea for Family Trees & Olive Branches came from hearing about so many painful family stories: parents who are heartbroken because of terrible...
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Family Project: Upcycle Old Jars

Over the past year, our family has collected two years of empty jars in our pantry. Blame it on our love of salsa, peanut butter, spaghetti sauce, and pickles. Blame it on our German heritage and absolute inability to throw away something we could use again. Blame it on the kids’ new understanding of Reduce,...
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