Repost: We Stayed

This post originally appeared on October 10, 2012. It doesn't happen often, but it feels pretty good to go back and read something that you're a bit removed from and to say, "Nope. Wouldn't change a word." This post falls into that category for me.   Three years ago, when Jason told me that he no longer believed in God, I had questions about our marriage surviving. I thought he might leave. He thought I might leave. We could have pointed to the statistics that said that we were now three times more likely to divorce, and no one would have blamed either one of us for taking that option. Our religious and irreligious communities would have supported us. "He's an immoral heathen, with no ability to appreciate life," mine might have said. "She's an irrational fool, intent … [Read more...]

Spirit-Led Parenting Blog Tour


When Megan Tietz asked about hosting a post for Spirit-Led Parenting, the book that she and Laura Oyer wrote together about the baby's first year, I wasn't sure, because I don't often write about parenting on my blog, and my first-year parenting days are well behind me. But when I saw that there was a sex chapter, I  jumped at the opportunity to host a post about THAT.  ++++++++ Shortly before our book was released, I was talking with my mother on the phone and she mentioned that she planned to send a copy to my 93-year-old grandfather. “Okay.” I replied.  “Oh!  Oh.  Um … just so you know?  There’s a sex chapter.” Yikes.  I mean, I’m not uncomfortable talking about sex, per se.  I’m totally fine with it in conversation with friends.  But the whole “Hello, strangers!  And … [Read more...]

She Looks Like Me

Today marks my first post over at A Deeper Family. Here's a teaser. Growing up, I sometimes wondered if I had been adopted. I didn’t look like anyone in my family. My sisters and my mom all looked similar. Pretty faces with softer features. Attractive smiles, eyes that could see without the aid of corrective lens wear. Hair that held soft curls when mom would use the spikey hot rollers on a Saturday evening. In all of our family pictures, I felt like I stood out. Angular face with eyes that didn’t quite line up right and thick glasses accentuating that. A serious under-bite that made my smile not quite as even or attractive. Hair that, when put in those same spikey hot rollers, had a tendency to look frizzy rather than curly. I never felt exactly ugly, but I was not pretty. Not the way … [Read more...]

Waffles, Aprons, and Memories

The people who made me who I am.

  I never thought an apron would make me cry. Growing up, every Sunday was waffle day. After church, my parents, sisters, and I would go to my grandparents' house for a family meal. My mom and Gram would stand at the sink, preparing the waffle batter and blackberries; cooking bacon or sausage. My dad and Kack would sit in the living room, reading the Sunday paper, and I would try to wrangle the comics away from them, thinking they were called "the articles" because Gram would always tell me to "wait until Kack was finished reading the articles" before I bothered him. Sometimes my sisters and I would play dress up with old hats and slips that Gram kept in her basement and make plays to perform while we waited for lunch. We always wore our best clothes to church in those days, … [Read more...]

Syndicated at BlogHer

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about some of my feelings regarding interfaith parenting, and the good folks at BlogHer asked to syndicate it! So please head on over to BlogHer and give my little piece a little love. And thank you all for allowing me to be honest about tough things here. If you've linked over here from BlogHer, welcome! Take a minute to look around and say hi. Lovely to meet you! … [Read more...]

Interfaith Parenting

When I was pregnant the first time, I didn't take a pregnancy test for two weeks because I was afraid to confirm that I was going to be a parent. I was too young, too recently married, too far from my family to have a baby.But we survived our first child, as well as her three subsequent siblings.We took them to church. We stood in front of our congregations and promised to raise them in the Christian faith. We did AWANA and VBS. We took the Christian parenting class.Then things changed. Jason is no longer a believer. It took us a while to talk to the kids about this change, but at this point, they all know. And while it was one thing to ask the kids to continue to attend church when Jason was in school and working nights and was just "too tired" to go, it's quite another thing to ask this … [Read more...]

What Was I Thinking?

In our huge basement clean out, we stumbled up the following picture. It was taken about 3 minutes after I gave birth to our youngest daughter and about 2 days before I was pregnant with our fourth. The time-line on that might be a little fuzzy. Things are kind of a blur from those days.Anyway, I'd love for you to tell me what was going through the brain of absolutely anyone in this picture.Enjoy. Not everyone gets to have a family melt-down captured on film forever. (For the record, we did not have to pay for this picture. Imagine - we got this for FREE. Jealous much?)ETA: Reader Michael Mock sent me the following. I am HOWLING! … [Read more...]

Post at

You may have seen the video of the dad who shoots his daughter's laptop to teach her a lesson. Today over at Provoketive, I'm talking about why I don't like it and why I think we need to examine our parenting in this digital age.I'd love it if you'd head over and share your thoughts! … [Read more...]

The Kid’s Table

The old card table that never got used for card games and the folding chairs that had been patched with duct tape that scratches your back were pulled out so the cobwebs could be cleaned off of them. Covered in plastic instead of cloth, so spills could be easily managed. Styrofoam plates and paper cups so nothing could be broken. Set up near enough to the the adults so there could be help with cutting the turkey, but far enough away that the grown-ups could talk about Important Things (tm) without interruption and we could just giggle about fart jokes.The kid's table.Now I'm at the adult table. We have the hard, wooden seats that make our older backs ache if we sit in them too long. We get to have the beautiful, festive tablecloth, but there are faint stains that won't wash out on it … [Read more...]

I Kissed Dating (My Husband) Goodbye

Jason and I have never been very much for dating. When we first got together, we were a long-distance couple. We didn't see each other very often (about every four to six weeks), so when we were together, we chose to stay in. When we married, we were on completely different shifts, me student teaching bright and early in the morning and him working retail until late at night. We then moved, got pregnant, moved again, got pregnant three more times in under three years, and found that staying home was way easier (and cheaper) than trying to find a babysitter for four young kids.One of our best datesBut finding babysitters and time are just excuses. The real reason that we don't date is because we are very bad at it. We will occasionally have a nice time out with just the two of us, but those … [Read more...]