If I’ve learned anything in life, I’ve learned that family isn’t always blood.

Now, don’t get me wrong – I’ve got some awesome family. Despite what’s happened in the past, I’m grateful to say that I have good relationships with all my family members. 

But over the years, I’ve needed a lot of extra help. Anyone else?

Every time Mother’s Day rolls around, I can’t help but think of all the special women in my life that have helped to make up the difference in my life. From youth leaders, to teachers, there’s a long list of people that I take special care to honor on Mother’s Day.

So, to all the mamas, by birth or by choice, here’s a special shoutout just for you.


To All the Mamas, by Birth or by Choice

Mamas that carry and birth their babies are crazy strong. I’m just saying, because now I’ve done it, too. That process showed me that God created me to do something absolutely remarkable, even though it seemed impossible (…really). 


To The Biological Moms

Obviously, there is no bond quite like the bond of a mama and baby that have spent nine special months together, then continue to spend many developmental years growing and learning. It amazes me every day how “in tune” you become with your child when you are with them almost 24/7 from the time they are born. 

To all the mamas out there that carried, birthed, and are raising their babies – you are so strong, so amazing, and so vital to the continuation of society. Even in the midst of overwhelm, stress, and exhaustion unlike any other, remember that you are everything to that baby, and there is no one quite like you. You are doing awesome!

Yet, there are plenty of other circumstances that end with a baby / child to be raised by someone other than their bio mom. And guess what…


To The Adopted / Foster Moms

Can I just pause a moment and say… Wow. 

I have a friend that is a foster mom to three cute kiddos. Over the course of this fostering relationship, she has shared some of her struggles and frustrations with me, as well as her joys. I am in amazement every time she shares stories with me.

My precious friend goes through SO much emotional, mental and physical exhaustion to take care of these kids, which have become like her own, and yet with no promise that they will be hers.

If that doesn’t sound like a mama, then I don’t know what a mama is.

To all the mamas that are fostering, whether in the process of adoption of not, or have already adopted – you are so selfless, so giving, and so important to these kids in need. Even when they yell at you or treat you terribly, or when you’re so done with “the system” – just remember that you are doing an incredible work, bringing hope to a young heart.


To The Special Moms

Even with a wonderful bio, foster, or adopted mom, I think almost every child finds a “role model” at some point in life. Sometimes, especially if there are issues in the home, these role models become pillars of strength and virtue, especially for a young girl trying to find her way in this big world.

This was certainly the case for me.

For a long time, my “special mom” was Grandma Marie. When she passed away, there were many women that helped me in various ways throughout my teenagers years. 

There’s something about a person that has no good reason to care, but does anyway. There’s something about people that see a need in a broken life, and work hard to earn trust so they can help fill that need. 

To all the special moms out there, who unofficially take kids under your wings, who expend emotion and energy to build relationships with broken people – thank you. You are doing a work unlike any other, that may seem to go unnoticed the rest of your life. Remember that God is watching, and you will receive your reward. 

Well, now I need some tissue. 😏 I’m grateful for all the amazing women in my life, whether they are “officially” moms or not. 

Just for fun, I’ve created some Mother’s Day files that you can send to all the special women in your life! These are 7×5 inch, one-sided Mother’s Day cards that you can easily save to your phone and send via text or email. You can also download the PDF file of all 7 cards, which would be perfect for printing out at home!

I’ve created a card for everyone!

  • Mama
  • Mother-in-Law
  • Sister (one child)
  • Sister (multiple children)
  • Friend (one child)
  • Friend (multiple children)
  • Special Woman

Just enter your name and email below, and I’ll send them your way! 😄


If you’re already part of the email list, just go to the Freebies Page and use the code from my weekly emails!

How about you? What special women are you honoring this Mother’s Day?

It’s 2021. 

I had a sudden (but extremely obvious) thought this morning – all people born in 2000 will be 21 this year! 


Why is it that I still think of 10 years ago as the 2000s? 😂 Well, anyway. 24 is NOT old, but it’s feeling older all the time. *shrug*

Side note: According to random personality tests, I’m actually aged 65-80 in my brain. So, there’s that.

Just for fun, here’s some little, personal notes about 2020. Feel free to answer the questionnaire for yourself! 😊

  • Best thing: My beautiful sunshine, Annie 💗 She brings so much light to my world; her smile is the loveliest sight; and her laugh warms the depths of my heart.
  • Hardest thing: The BIRTH of my beautiful sunshine — Childbirth is a marathon for mom AND dad.
  • Most surprising thing: Buying our first home (no, it wasn’t planned…ha) It’s been SO fun to have, but the process was NOT!
  • Best professional moment: Hearing from students about how much my time at LCA meant to them
  • Best familial moment: Watching my husband become a daddy
  • Most challenging thing: Trying to maintain friendships in the midst of COVID-19 — I miss hosting!
  • Something I loved and why: Adopting Buddy ♥️ We adopted him from Tulsa Humane Society RIGHT before Tulsa shut down due to COVID. He brought a lot of laughter and fun to some dismal days. Even though he’s been difficult at times, he has become an important part of our lives. 
  • Something I disliked and why: Being pregnant 🤪 I did not feel like myself mentally, physically, emotionally, or even spiritually.
  • A lesson from 2020 I will carry with me: Relationships are the most important things in life — with God, with family, and with friends — and they will carry you through any trouble.

Did you do any reflection on 2020? Feel free to share in the comments! 

God bless you all in 2021!

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” -‭‭1 Thessalonians‬ ‭5:16-18‬ ‭(NIV‬‬)

I find it interesting that Merriam Webster’s first definition of thankful is “conscious of benefit received.”

It’s easy to associate thankfulness with good things.

“Thank you for the compliment.”
“Thank you for serving my food.”
“Thank you for the gift.”
“Thank you for holding the door open.”

But, what about the not-so-good?

“Thank you for holding up traffic.”
“Thank you for this extra workload.”
“Thank you for leaving your dirty clothes everywhere.”
“Thank you for this storm.”

That sounds crazy, right? Unless someone is being passive aggressive and spewing sarcasm (which, I’ve learned, typically does more harm than good), it’s unlikely that those sentiments would come from a person’s mouth.

However, as it always does, God’s Word challenges us to go beyond the instinctive.

“…give thanks in all circumstances…”

Some people jump to the defense and say things like, “I can’t be thankful for sickness! I can’t be thankful for this pain and grief!”

I’d have to agree.

That’s why it’s important to note the small preposition used in this admonition from 1 Thessalonians. We aren’t to be thankful for all circumstances, but rather we are to thankful in all circumstances.

It really boils down to perspective. 

Will I dwell on the pain of my situation, or will I focus on the personal growth that could happen as a result?

Will I drown in grief, or will I embrace fond memories?

So while I may not always be thankful for my circumstances, I choose to be grateful in the midst of my circumstances.

  • Jesus loves me, and He has never failed me.
  • I have breath in my body.
  • There is hope beyond this life.
  • I have a loving family.
  • Beauty can be found in the smallest things, like the autumn air and the faithful sunrise.
  • I have a home, plenty of clothes, and a variety of food.
  • …and on, and on, and on.

Yes, there is so much to be thankful for, despite circumstances.

Talk about defying expectations. 🙂 Ah, a good topic for another day…

May you be filled with gratitude, no matter how different this holiday season may be.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!