Just As I Am

My oldest daughter has entered the mystifying world of high school and her younger sister is fascinated by her new schedule and routines, outfits and toiletries. Mary studies Priscilla as she primps in the morning and plows through her homework in the evening, and as she Facetimes her friends and practices her Oral Interpretation piece in front of our full length mirror. To Mary, Priscilla is the archetype of “teenage girl,” the very embodiment of what teenagedom looks…

Envy and Resentment and Insecurity, Oh My!

Recently, I picked up a Reader’s Digest and found in it this thought-provoking quote from author Mark Manson: “All day, every day, we are flooded with the truly extraordinary. The best of the best. The worst of the worst… This flood of extreme information has conditioned us to believe that ‘exceptional’ is the new normal. And since all of us are rarely exceptional, we all feel pretty damn insecure and desperate to feel…

Seared with Scars

  Admittedly, I am in no position to speculate on the whys of suffering. Nor would I dare pretend to have tasted of real suffering, not when I know of friends who have buried their children, escaped abusive relationships, and battled life-threatening illnesses. And not in light of poverty, refugees fleeing their homeland, and men, women and children being tortured and killed for their faith. I don’t understand suffering;  I shudder at the thought of…

Grace Here and Now

  Ten years ago, I started a blog called “Close to Home” where I chronicled my adventures in raising four young children. I poured my heart and soul into it and eventually “Close to Home” spawned a book and podcast. It’s been an amazing decade. I’ve been thoroughly stretched and humbled. In the thick of it, when I was up to my blood-shot eyeballs in sippy cups, car seats, and new mom…