Letter to my 13 year old self

Dear Angela,

You know that girl that always chases you after school?  She is not worth your time.  Take a different route home.  Walk with a group.  Tell a teacher.  You don’t have to let her get to you.  She has no business touching you.  You do not deserve to be treated like that.

Don’t you know that you are so pretty?  You are talented too!  You have way more going for you than you realize.

The words hurt too don’t they?  Hair pulling and bloody lips are physical pain, but I think the emotional pain can be worse.  No one can actually see that. No one can see how your heart feels, can they? So you just keep pretending that it doesn’t hurt.

Do you make other kids feel the way they make you feel?  I bet you do without even realizing it.  Maybe you could think about how they make you feel, and try not to make them feel that way?

God has an exciting life planned out for you. So you hang in there!  There is a man growing up just a couple towns away that is being groomed to be your husband some day.  You’re going to have a home in the country!  You’re going to have a wonderful church family.  You have much to look forward to.  So keep pushing forward and don’t give up, okay?


Your 45 year old self

Navigating the seasons of life.

Since my last post, we have guided our only daughter through 2 proms, high school graduation, and many more little things in life.  She’s still home, and still trying to find what direction the Lord has for her.  As her parents, we are trying hard to gently guide her without letting her settle in.

Parenting an adult child is a new challenge for us.  It now becomes a team effort of 3 adults running a household.  It’s challenging and frustrating at times; but this is a transition for all of us;  A new season to navigate.

Lord, help us allow you to guide us so that we can guide her down the right path.


Who IS this kid?

One of the hardest lessons I have learned as a parent thus far is this; my kid is not me.  We always say we want them to be their own person. We want them to explore life and discover what really makes them tick.  Somewhere deep inside though, (at least for me) lies this little morsel of expectation that (s)he is going to be just like me.  She will like the same kinds of people, listen to the same kinds of music.  Her emotions and reactions to circumstances will mimic the way mine were at her age.  For me, this stemmed from a need to understand my daughter.  If I knew exactly what she was thinking or feeling, I could be her hero.  I could tell her, “I know just how you feel…”.

As Ashley my (16 year old fireball) entered her teen years, it became apparent that I had no idea what she was thinking.  Or why she was thinking it. Or how she really felt about it.  I certainly had an idea based on my own experiences, but all I could really do in most situations was empathize.

When it hit home that my daughter was nothing like me, it was two things.  First of all, it was scary.  How can I be any help to her if I can’t tell her I know what she is going through?  Secondly, and ironically, there was a sense of relief.  I could relax to some extent.  Let her work through things her own way instead of telling her how I think she should handle a particular situation.

Ashley and I compliment each other.  Being so different allows for really interesting, philosophical conversation.  Sometimes her perspective makes more sense to me than my own and vise versa.

I am learning as a mom that my primary focus is just to love her. And that’s easy.  Understanding her all the time?  No so much.  And I now know that that’s Okay!

Have you made this realization with one or more of your kids?  What impact did it have on you? Were you surprised?  Tell me your thoughts in the comment box!

How has bullying changed over the years?

Magnificent Living For Teens

LITB Ep. 3

How do you define “bully”?  There’s no doubt the answer to that question is different now than it would have been 50 years ago.  Don’t you agree?

Fifty years ago kids were expected to get up early, do chores, walk to school, and return home to do more chores.  They packed their lunch and were taught to say “yes sir”, and “no sir”

A “bully” in the 1950’s would have probably been defined as someone who singles out weak classmates and picks on them in a physical way.  Hitting, kicking, punching….that was bullying.  Bullies in the 1950’s stole lunch money and dumped lunch trays. At least that is what has been portrayed on television.

Fast forward to the 80’s – my era.  When I was a freshman in high school I was bullied – at least in my mind it was bullying.  Upper classmen took it as their duty to harass freshman.  It was a right of passage…

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God is Amazing – weird – but amazing. :)

Isn’t God so cool?  He works in such weird ways – but when we see the end result – it’s so cool! The coolest part is this; what we think is the end result might just be the beginning!

About 6 weeks ago I lost a job I held for nearly 7 years. At the time it just didn’t make sense.  I was hurt because I felt like I had no value.  I was scared because I had lost my income and our insurance coverage. When I called my husband, I expected him to sound disappointed in me.  He didn’t.  He just spoke softly and said we would talk when he got home.  When he got home – he just hugged me. Blessing number 1 – being reminded what an amazing man God gave me to share my life with.

Then I called my parents.  I expected disappointment from them too. There wasn’t any.  Just words of encouragement and empathy. Blessing number 2 – being reminded what wonderful people raised me and how blessed I am that they are still in my life.  The blessings just started snowballing.

Over the last 6 weeks I have applied for nearly 20 jobs.  I have never had such a difficult time finding work.  I have had several interviews, but for whatever reason, no offers.  God has used this time to show me how prevalent He is in my life.  I have had time to rest.  I have had opportunities to earn little bits of income here and there. These little bits of income have been just what we needed. I have had time to start my blogs, which is something I have been wanting to do for a long time. The best part…..we have extra money.  How does that happen?  Our income is nearly $1000 less than it was, yet we have more than we need.  I am happier than I have been in a long time, and my friends and family have made the same observation.

How DOES that happen?  The better question is WHY?  It’s because God promised us He would be faithful when we ask Him.  All He asks of us is to be faithful in return.  Admittedly, it’s not always easy being faithful.  When you don’t know where your next house payment is coming from, yet you still place that tithe check in the plate on Sunday morning…it’s really hard.  But He honors that.  Time and time again I have seen it. I have received checks in the mail for insurance dividends that I didn’t know existed.  I even was invited to participate in an interview on parenting and was paid $60 for that! sunset 001

God is truly amazing.  He has a sense of humor and can be a little weird.  But hey so can I! I guess maybe I’m more like Him than I thought.  My hope is to become more like Him everyday.

Friends – there is always ALWAYS a blessing to be found.  Just believe it’s there and you will find it. Philippians 1:6 says this; Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.  

Cling to that promise.  He has so much more in store for us than we could ever imagine.  He is God afterall.🙂


When you hit rock bottom – remember Jesus IS the rock.