Wednesday, January 29, 2014


Through a difficult week for many friends over the loss of a dear mother, friend and Warrior. She's blazed a trail for many mothers many years ago, having a career as a nurse, then getting married later, only to really enjoy having seven kids and raising them well. Her daughter blogs about her in a tribute

In the same week, there was a terrible accident at the high school I attended, where a teen girl was killed and another girl seriously injured.

The loss of those two beautiful women is striking and severe. We all must face loss in our life. We might not lose our mother or our friend or our daughter, but every day we must confront our own mortality and limitations.  

Grief isn't just over great loss, it can be experienced every single day.  We might see them as frustrations or disappointments. But they are losses. The kids break the radio. The meat you took out for dinner is bad. School is delayed two hours again. Our friend let us down. The struggles we face might seem simple in light of a greater loss, but we still have to ask   How do we move through grief?

Every person has their own way through; and if you are currently experiences, I pray you will find your way through the comforts of Christ. But you will have your own time, methods, pace, momentum and stalling. That is why I love poetry; because it is always a reflection of someone else's process. It reassures me that I am not alone in my experience, nor am I supposed to make it look a certain way.

Speak low to me, my Saviour, low and sweet
From out the hallelujahs, sweet and low
Lest I should fear and fall, and miss Thee so
Who art not missed by any that entreat.
Speak to me as to Mary at thy feet!
And if no precious gems my hands bestow,
Let my tears drop like amber while I go
In reach of thy divinest voice complete
In humanest affection -- thus, in sooth,
To lose the sense of losing. As a child,
Whose song-bird seeks the wood for evermore
Is sung to in its stead by mother's mouth
Till, sinking on her breast, love-reconciled,
He sleeps the faster that he wept before. 
There is a way through, one where you reach a place of rest from your sorrows and disappointments. There will be a time when we will "lose our sense of losing." A small psalm understands the smallness we feel when we grieve: Psalm 131 gives us a simple image: that of a resting child.

Lord, my heart is not lifted up;
my eyes are not raised too high;
I do not occupy myself with things
too great and too marvelous for me.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul,
like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child is my soul within me.
O Israel, hope in the Lord
from this time forth and forevermore.

As Browning writes, there will be a time when we will have sweet rest faster than the tears come down so quickly.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

My little ham bone

I haven't written about my son, Grant, in quite a while. After receiving this picture, I couldn't help but pause and reflect.

Isn't he a ham? We didn't prompt this pose at all. During the photo sessions after my brother-in-law's recent wedding, we were trying to get him to smile, and my husband gave him a "thumbs-up" from the sidelines. 
At three and a half, he has returned to his normal, cheerful, but mischievous self. In contrast to my daughter, he is much more sneaky. We often find him hiding with various electronics under our large ottoman, our bed or his bed. The same goes with food-- he says "surprise" with his little eyebrows raised, as if the candy or chocolate in his mouth was a great idea. He also has very specific preferences and explains those in great detail at great volume. This morning: "Mom, I need milk in. a. sippa. cup." Every word is emphasized. As if I didn't know or hadn't heard that one before.
Most of his winter days involve couch acrobatics, breakdancing spins on the wood floors, or going over "to check if Ben's home." Ben is his neighbor friend next door; Grant explains it like this, "You know, Ben's my bruder, you know, Mom?" Here they are roasting marshmallows in front of your favorite winter activity: making a fire. I think you get this love of woods, outdoors and fires from your Opa, who loves to take you outside to chop wood every time you visit him.

In other ways, you are still a little guy. Every morning, if you don't find me in bed, you ask me, "Why you not in bed, Mom? You supposed to 'nuggle me!" You bury your cold feet against my warm legs and you nuzzle down under the covers or blanket next to me. I love these little moments because I know they won't last forever. I always knew I wanted little boys for their rambunctious and spirited energy-- and I got a special one in you.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Two babes.

The first is my third child, due in July. Here's a picture of "Salami Shank" so dubbed by my three year old son.


At least my older child calls it "Rosie".

Obviously, both my children have strong preferences on gender. Good thing it's not a decision I chose and have to live with the problem of being a major celebration for one and a epic disappointment for the other.

The second is my fourth. Yes, I am having two babies in one year! That's what Carolyn and I call our joint book project, The Measure of Success, due out February 1, 2014. Here's what it look like if you haven't seen it already on my Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and every where else :)

Here's a quote from the back of the book:
Discover God's view of the successful woman

Should a woman work? Can a woman be feminine, godly, and ambitious? Is work only for women who need the income? Is there any sanctified ground between the stay-at-home mom and the aspiring executive?

Whether you are married or single, young or old, and whether you work inside the home or in the marketplace, Carolyn and Nora create a rich vision for fulfillment through an understanding of the compelling foundation for the biblical call of productivity.

Far from the stone-throwing arguments that often occupy the discussion around women, work, and the home, Carolyn and Nora show how the redemptive message of the gospel allows the Bible's teaching on the role of women to coexist with ambition. It creates a fresh vision for the profit we all gain from encouraging female contribution in the home, society, and church.

If you've ever wondered whether you're living the life that most glorifies God,The Measure of Success will help you answer that question.
My bio on the back says that I ran several entrepreneurial candy and lemonade stands, so I thought would share a picture of my first with my childhood friend. Aren't we cute?? Can you read the sign on the right? It says, "Keep your cups if you wint more." That was the Dutch in me trying to be cheap and resourceful.

I can't wait to hear what you think about our latest venture! In the coming weeks, you'll hear more about how we would love to hear from our readers on their work and how they define success, as well as a few fun giveaways!

If you want to read more specifically about work for women and see less of me and my pictures, then you can check out my other site here.