Kids, this year you can buy your own advent calendars. Love, Mom

Today, December 4th, 2017, I realized that I didn’t buy my kids an advent calendar. I also realized that I am okay with that.

Since I can remember, I’ve bought our children the cheap .99 advent calendars. You know, the ones with the not so great chocolate pieces behind the little tiny paper door that you could barely see the number on.

Each day, usually before breakfast, the kids, would come out of their rooms, scampering to the calendar with their name on it (we don’t share our advent chocolates) to open the tiny little door and pull out the tiny piece of not so great chocolate and inspect it. Most of the time we couldn’t even tell what the shape was meant to be. “Oh”, I’d say confidently while lying through my teeth. “It’s a bell!” or “It’s holly!” And they were satisfied enough to pop the little chocolate morsels in their mouths and eagerly await the same routine tomorrow.

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Boomerang Kids, by Sarah May – a boomerang kid

With our last child having recently launched, the idea of one coming back has not been one I’ve thought anything about. I would love to think that, should my kids ever need to boomerang, I would be as welcoming as gracious as my friend, Sarah’s, mom has been to her. And I would pray that my kids would be as conscientious and accommodating as Sarah has been with her mom. Thank you, Sarah, for sharing a tale from the other side of Notherhood.

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We are all just one unkind word from being “that” family.

“That” family mentioned in the title is the one which is unhappy, unhealthy, and worn thin by misunderstanding, misdeeds, and mistrust. I am counting my blessings for the good relationships that my children have with each other but I’m also keenly aware that it could all be wrecked in one moment. One hurt. One unkind word that tips the scale toward untold damage.

Continue reading “We are all just one unkind word from being “that” family.”

Let me tell you why you want to be like my mom. by Ginger Newingham

I am pleased and honored to have Ginger Newingham, a wife, mom, missionary, adoption advocate, crusader for all things just, blogger and old farmhouse inheritor, joining us on Notherhood. She comes to us moms of adult children from the perspective of the adult child telling us how, in her words, “my mom is nailing it!”. Ginger reminds us how good this season can be as our days of disciplining are done and how spoiling our children can now be a good thing. Thank you, Ginger, for sharing a tale from the other side of Notherhood.

Continue reading “Let me tell you why you want to be like my mom. by Ginger Newingham”

“I’ll probably never eat on a schedule again.” and other random thoughts from a brand new empty nester.

As I write this, I have a few short hours before I enter the season of being an empty nester. Our baby bird flies out of the nest today. Literally. She’ll hop on a plane from England and fly to Texas. And just like that, our nest will be empty.

My desires do not change reality – nor would I want them to if I’m honest with myself. Not only will I let her go but I will grab my car keys and drive her to the airport. Letting go won’t be easy but I’ve learned (the hard way at times) that right is rarely easy. (click to tweet)

Continue reading ““I’ll probably never eat on a schedule again.” and other random thoughts from a brand new empty nester.”

When God Whispers Freedom to a Mom’s Heart

On this day that our country celebrates her freedom, it seems fitting to share a bit of freedom-giving encouragement for us nothers.

A beautiful (inside and out) friend, from what seems like a former life, shared her mom heart on her Instagram recently. As I read her post, my soul was stirred and encouraged. I asked her for permission to share with you, which she graciously granted. I think it will speak to your mom heart as well.

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Mom, You Did Good!!

Do you ever look back on your life as a mom, pat yourself on the back and tell yourself “You did good!”? If not, you should!! We moms can be so ridiculously hard on ourselves. We dawn our mom guilt, slip into negative thoughts, and wear feelings of failure like a pair of woolen yoga pants. How about we forget all of those heavy things, lighten our load and toot our own horns for a bit? Join me!!

I recently skimmed an article by a mother who didn’t want to be classified, or in her words “marginalized” as a mom. She felt her life was bigger than being pigeonholed into that role. I get that our lives are bigger than being a mom but … pigeonhole me and call me “mama” because I love being a mom!!! (click to tweet)

Being a mom has been one of my most validating, humbling, uplifting and gratifying things to be. “Mom” is one of my favorite names!

Getting to be the mom of adult children is proven to be even more rewarding. I know that I am very blessed to have children who have not made seriously poor choices but don’t think for one minute that my kids are perfect. They were imperfect when they were young and they’re imperfect as adults. We all are. I don’t know why some of our children choose the path they choose. I do know that the outcome of our parenting has all sorts of possibilities and some do not fulfill our hopes and dreams.

Once our kids have made adult decisions to choose their own life path, they are out of our hands. But I know full well that they are not out of our hearts. If an unfavorable outcome is part of your parenting story, please know that I am sensitive to your tender heart. I, in no way, intend to rub salt into your wound here. But, for you, for all of us moms, there are ways in which we can acknowledge that we did good. That’s what this is about. Our successes. Not the mom guilt, not the feelings of failure or any of that. This is about lifting ourselves up and recognizing the good stuff.

Mom, You Did Good

A younger mom friend once asked me how I gauge parental success. I thought about this for a few days and I came up with this: I feel successful as a parent when my children have moved out but still look forward to coming back. I also feel a gratifying tinge of success when my adult children hang out together – because they want to. This does my mama’s heart a world of good.

What is your thermometer for parental success? This is YOUR question and YOUR answer based on YOUR experience.

I know that there are countless ways we can see that we did good if we turn our focus to them rather than the possible negatives. Look at yourself in the mirror and say to yourself, “You did good because _______.” Then come back here and tell us what you said.

Way to go, Mom!! You did good!!! (click to tweet)



Photo credit:, Braite