Category Archives: Things I Love!

The Scrambled States of America

If you want to teach your gang geography, encourage them to value travel and well…possess the general knowledge that a reference to “Washington” does not necessarily denote a conversation about our first president…then you’ll appreciate The Scrambled States of America, by Laurie … Continue reading

Posted in Art/Beautiful Things, Book Review, Education, Family, Kids, Literature/Books, Things I Love!, writing/work | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

OWL MOON Winner!

My, My! What astute readers have I! Last week Friday I shared a fun family idea and opened a contest to those of you who could correctly identify the name of the audio book our family listened to. All entrants … Continue reading

Posted in Book Lists, Book Review, Contest, Discoveries, Education, Family, Family Activities, Family Friday, FREE BOOK, Giveaway!, Home, Kids, Kids in School, Literature/Books, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Play, Things I Love!, Uncategorized, writing/work | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Family Friday: Book Nights

Pop some popcorn and get in your jammies for Book Night! My husband and I first considered taking story time beyond Officer Buckle and Gloria when one of his friends from work shared this simple idea: instead of “movie night” … Continue reading

Posted in Book Lists, Book Review, Education, Faith, Family, Family Friday, Home, Kids, Literature/Books, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Things I Love!, Uncategorized, writing/work | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Hearing Isaiah in a Painted Sky

“Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, or with the breadth of his hand marked off the heavens? Who has held the dust of the earth in a basket, or weighed the mountains on the scales … Continue reading

Posted in Art/Beautiful Things, Faith, God, gratitude, Home, Matters of the Heart, Nature/Outdoors, Prayer, Seasons of Life, Things I Love! | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Valentine’s Day Part 2: Hunting for Treasure

It’s probably the hibernating teacher within that brings me round to setting up riddles and scavenger hunts for my kids. Yes, after all these years of standing in slippers wiping butts and noses, there are moments when that alter-ego is … Continue reading

Posted in Contest, CRAZY kids, Education, Faith, Family, Following Jesus, Gifts, God, Holidays, Home, Kids, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Play, Random Fun, Seasons of Life, Silly Lists, Things I Love!, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Valentine’s Day Part 1: Spread Some Love

Don’t we all wish there was a fool-proof recipe or some sort of silicon mold that promised to shape our children into the caring, generous, love-filled humans we want them to be? Or perhaps some magic powder we could sprinkle … Continue reading

Posted in Compassion, CRAZY kids, Decor/Organizing, Discipline Issues, Education, Faith, Family, Following Jesus, Food, God, gratitude, Holidays, Home, Kids, Kitchen/Culinary Woes, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Neighbors, Play, Random Fun, Recipe/Kitchen Success!, Seasons of Life, Things I Love! | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Easy Meal Idea With a Side of Smiles

If you’ve been a long-time reader, you will know that my kitchen prowess is, well, a bit unpolished. That is to say, I should have auditioned for Anne Burrell’s Worst Cook in America. I’m sure I could put on quite … Continue reading

Posted in Family, Food, Home, Kids, Kitchen/Culinary Woes, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Things I Love!, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Family Friday: Compassion Project

I don’t know about where you live, but the past few weeks have blasted West Michigan with painfully icy wind and record-breaking snowfall. I wish I could say that I’m loving it, but in truth, I’m counting the days until … Continue reading

Posted in Compassion, CRAZY kids, Education, Faith, Family, Family Friday, Following Jesus, Gifts, gratitude, Home, Kids, Marriage, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Neighbors, Random Fun, Seasons of Life, Social Justice, Things I Love! | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Take Care of Your ‘Neighbs With Some Simple Compassion

Today, one of our local news reporters delivered his thoughts on this record-breaking weather while stationed up to his thighs in snow on a fake deck. Nice touch, I thought. One leg was in a “normal” section of the snow … Continue reading

Posted in Art/Beautiful Things, Book Review, Compassion, Contest, Faith, Family, Following Jesus, FREE BOOK, Friends, Gifts, Giveaway!, God, gratitude, Home, Kids, Literature/Books, Matters of the Heart, Prayer, Seasons of Life, Things I Love!, writing/work | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

More Exciting Than A Blizzard? A FREE BOOK!

It seems that nothing has the power to transform meteorologists into giddy children like a rollicking storm. Weathermen and women posted outdoors in the bluster seem thrilled to be at the center of such epic developments, their stern admonitions to skedaddle … Continue reading

Posted in Book Review, Contest, Discoveries, Faith, Family, FREE BOOK, Gifts, Giveaway!, God, Growing Pains, Heartbreak, Holidays, Home, Kids, Matters of the Heart, Seasons of Life, Things I Love!, Uncategorized, writing/work | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Book Giveaway Week!

This past week while huffing through a morning deathmatch with our eliptical machine, my gaze fell on the nearby spines of several books have been given to me over the years to review. Having gotten them with the intention of … Continue reading

Posted in Book Review, Contest, Faith, Family, Following Jesus, FREE BOOK, Gifts, Giveaway!, God, Heartbreak, Home, Kids, Literature/Books, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Prayer, Things I Love!, writing/work | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Family Friday: Indoor Skeet Shooting

I have to give major props to my husband for this one–it’s totally his brain and creativity that adds so much color and life to our home.  What can I say–he has a PhD. I guess you have to be … Continue reading

Posted in CRAZY kids, Discoveries, Family, Family Friday, Holidays, Kids, Marriage, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Play, Random Fun, Seasons of Life, Things I Love!, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

What a Great Idea!

I love to share great ideas. If it’s something that can encourage or edify–I’m your blogger. [keep that in mind and send my your besties!] Recently my dear friend Lyndsey sent me a link to her friend’s design blog–you know–the … Continue reading

Posted in Art/Beautiful Things, crafts, Faith, Family, Following Jesus, God, gratitude, Growing Pains, Home, Kids, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Prayer, Random Fun, Things I Love! | 2 Comments

Fortune Cookies: Free Therapy

Let’s pause for a moment of honesty.  [Exhale through the nose]… I ate the whole. box. [Minus five cookies which were generously allotted to my children.] I mean, this was over several days, so don’t go pointing fingers.  I’m sure … Continue reading

Posted in Discoveries, Food, Kitchen/Culinary Woes, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Random Fun, Silly Lists, Things I Love!, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

For Your Olfactorial Pleasure

Ok, I’m not really sure that’s a word, but I’m guessing you know what I mean. Smells!  Good ones! I discovered a wonderful new candle that I just have to rave about—and adding frosting and sprinkles to the news is … Continue reading

Posted in Art/Beautiful Things, Discoveries, Holidays, Home, Random Fun, Things I Love! | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meet Rob and Kelly…

One thing I so appreciate about our family is that we try to be purposeful about planning special nights together where TV and telephones fall to the wayside, and imagination and teamwork grab the spotlight. They are nights when we … Continue reading

Posted in Contest, CRAZY kids, Education, Family, Holidays, Home, Kids, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Play, Things I Love! | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Beware: I’m 8 and I have a label-maker

After returning back to headquarters Saturday night with scads of candy, sweaty hair, and cavities at-the-ready, the kids dumped piles of loot on the dining room table and declared victory. Victory over vegetables, unprocessed food, and moderation in any form. … Continue reading

Posted in CRAZY kids, Family, Holidays, Home, Kids, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Nature/Outdoors, Neighbors, Play, Random Fun, Things I Love!, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

A Patch of Sky

Today as I sat motionless beneath a two-way stoplight, I looked up and noticed a gap in the steel, perfectly framing a bookmark-sized patch of the purest blue sky. It was mesmerizing.  Suspended above a cloudless tree line it floated … Continue reading

Posted in Art/Beautiful Things, Discoveries, Nature/Outdoors, Things I Love! | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Bittersweet, by Shauna Niequist

What a delight to have been offered the opportunity to review Shauna Niequist’s latest book, Bittersweet, released last month by Zondervan.  Stitched together with threads of the poetic and honest writing we devoured in Cold Tangerines, Shauna’s voice again rings … Continue reading

Posted in Contest, Faith, Family, Following Jesus, FREE BOOK, Friends, Gifts, God, gratitude, Heartbreak, Home, Kids, Literature/Books, Marriage, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Nature/Outdoors, Play, Seasons of Life, Things I Love! | 7 Comments

Stefanich Stepping Stones

Tonight is one of the many times I’ve sat in my home, buoyant and basking in a deep pool of gratitude.  My good friend Kamarah [Best Neighbor Ever] recently sent me an email sharing the journey of a wonderful woman … Continue reading

Posted in adoption, Education, Faith, Family, Following Jesus, God, Home, Kids, Marriage, Matters of the Heart, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Seasons of Life, Things I Love!, Travel | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

LOVE THIS!

In the humid rain with a van full of kids, I sloshed to the end of the driveway and across familiar roads to Target.  Toothpaste and deodorant being what they are [essential!], we rolled through the aisles tossing Crest and … Continue reading

Posted in Living Green, Things I Love! | 1 Comment

Hooray For Talented Friends!

I’m using today’s post to brag about my wonderfully talented [and too-humble] neighbor, Kamarah.  She’s just recently allowing the petals of her photo-flower to bloom, and has comprised a uTube video highlighting her work for future clients.  If you’re someone … Continue reading

Posted in Friends, Nature/Outdoors, Neighbors, Play, Random Fun, Things I Love!, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

The Gift of Sand and Water

Anyone who knows me well can attest to the hold that the beach seems to have on me.  The sound of pounding water, birds overhead, toes in sand, sun on shoulders, salty air — it’s almost too much.   Living … Continue reading

Posted in Discoveries, Education, Gifts, gratitude, Kids, Motherhood/Mommy Duties, Nature/Outdoors, Play, Things I Love!, Vacation | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Be Still My Soul

One thing that has always amazed me is how poets and hymn writers of the past so eloquently captured the message of God’s compassion, His immeasurable grace, and the comfort found in the Gospel.  We sang this song in church … Continue reading

Posted in Faith, Following Jesus, God, gratitude, Matters of the Heart, Music, Things I Love! | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments