Mary Poppins Isn’t Real: Thoughts on Doing Summer Slow


I have this thing I do every summer, where I decide that this is going to be the BEST SUMMER EVER! I have big plans for big fun with my family of four. We will hit the splashpad and the pool, the zoo, the children’s museum. Ice cream! Grill outs! Parties! VACATION!!!! We need to […]

Wading Further Into Grace


By Rachel Ann Smolen | @smolennation There are some pieces of earth, at certain moments under certain circumstances, that feel more sacred than common. I had that feeling earlier this spring as I practically skipped across a parking lot under the canopy of a breezy, cloudy sky. This wasn’t just any parking lot. This was […]

Note to Self: Stop Apologizing


Long before we know our ABCs most of us are pros at shame and self-effacement—which, to be clear, is not humility. If I could go back, I’d say several things to my younger self. But here’s the biggest: Sweetheart, stop. You don’t have to excuse every good thing, or feel embarrassed about every lack of […]

The Practice of Being Ourselves


“Mom, can I watch Youtube?” “Mom, can I have a snack?” “Mom, can I buy this book?” My children are constantly asking me for permission to do just about everything in their routines. Mostly, it’s just out of habit. “Mom, can I go to the bathroom?” Um, yes, yes, please do, and really, you don’t […]

Talking To My Inner Toddler


The day started off well enough. I woke before my 19-month-old son did, the one sleeping in the crook of my arm, and that miracle afforded me a minute to adjust my eyes to the morning light seeping through the curtains and for my groggy brain to conjure up one complete thought. I sighed, audibly. […]