Jul 27


I at times picture my life in a music video. Like there have been many times where music is on, and I am doing something that I think to myself dang if a camera was following me right now they’d make a lot of money with no acting. I have a dear friend who gets this part of me, so I text her often of my music video moments. Maybe one day a rock star will capitalize on my life which includes a constant roller coaster of emotions.

On Mary Anna’s birthday it was hot as you know what. I went on a run during the worst part of the day. I listened to this song Defender, and I began to weep uncontrollably while running down a public trail. I yelled a cuss word out loud. Yep. Sure. Did. Insert Video Camera at any point.

This band Kings Kaleidoscope has been played a lot at our house recently. Their music has depth, and we feel like we’re friends with the lead singer, because he lost a baby like us, and we get a lot of what he wrestles with in his music. I’m sure he’ll be calling me soon for that music video.

But the word DEFENDER hit me that day. It has been on my heart a lot lately.

Jesus, our savior, defender, redeemer

As I wrestle with my faith and comprehension of losing my girl these past 4 years that is one word that has never come to mind. In reality, I have felt like I wanted someone to defend me. To defend Mary Anna. To defend my loss.

But in that I lost the reality that my one defender has been patiently waiting on me this whole time. He went to bat for me and for Dan and for Mary Anna and for you thousands of years ago, and He sits at the right hand of the Father still defending us today.

I cried to God for help, he heard my voice

We are famous for transition lately, and we are in the process of it again right now. Transitions are hard when loss is involved. It adds a dimension that’s hard to explain. There’s Mary Anna’s stuff that will be moved again into a new space that hasn’t been touch, and I will yet again wipe the dust off of it, and not set her up a room in another new house.

Jesus, our savior, defender, redeemer

I’ll mourn friends and make new ones, and have to retell the our story of our girl.

Jesus, our savior, defender, redeemer

And I am sure there will be lots more moments where a video producer will lose that epic emotional shot of me running and weeping, or setting up a nursery and weeping, or dusting off the same pictures of my baby and weeping. BUT, it truly is okay. I have a defender. He defended me on the cross, and He still defends me.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.
2 Corinthians 1:3-5

I’ve been spending a lot of time lately telling William who’s a wild 3-year-old boy exploring strength and power and energy and wanting to defend every thought or emotion or action that he has that Jesus is big and strong. And he is our defender. If that is the message that I want my other two babies to take home, then it is time that I take it home, even to my new home, myself.

Jesus, our savior, defender, redeemer

We have a DEFENDER friends. We just have to believe it.

Keep Walking

Jul 14


Happy 4th Birthday to my girl,

You made me a mom. You changed me from the day that I knew about you. Your entrance into the world was wild and unexpected and your exit was bold and majestic. I picture you being a little momma to Mary Kathryn and getting onto William for being all boy. I bet that you would have woken up early today and loved having a donut with sprinkles with your daddy and then skipping lunch and dinner for cake with me. I just know your love for sweets would be strong, because it’s just a gene that our family requires.

I have heard 4 is the best age! So that makes this birthday seem to sting a bit more. You are missed and celebrated today angel.

William woke up saying “It’s Mary Anna’s birthday! She is in heaven with God!”. He helped me hang your birthday banner with cute colorful tassels in the kitchen, and he can’t stop peaking at your cake.

I went to a bakery yesterday, and they had 1 cake for sale. It was pink and yellow and orange, and it said HAPPY BIRTHDAY in bright pink letters on it. They added “Mary Anna!” to it, and I cried the whole way home.

Thank you for being a vessel that constantly points us to heaven. We miss you always, but especially today, because it is YOUR day, baby girl.



mommy and daddy and william and mary kathryn

and i guess marley and fish camp too.

Apr 15

Carry it.

I decided to dedicate myself this year to doing a lenten study. I have never done this before, but I read through the entire book of Isaiah. It was life-changing. A few times I had to sit down and catch up on a few days, but all in all, I did pretty well with this commitment. I had to have a commentary next to me the whole time, or else it would get pretty confusing, but the message of Christ and His heritage and the foretelling of His coming kept bringing me to my knees.

This message kept resonating in my heart…

I am so eager to accept Jesus’ death for me. I know the story. I believe it. I base my entire life on it, yet what am I willing to sacrifice for him.

As I sat in our Good Friday service yesterday, and our pastor was telling a story about his baby girl, and he reminded us of Jesus’ anguish, when He was begging the Father to spare His life….

Take this for a second, Jesus is God, and He could spare His own life, but he did not.

God is God, and He could have spared His only Son’s life, but he did not.

About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken Me?”
Matthew 27:46

I remember holding my daughter in my arms right as she was taking her lasts breaths and begging the Lord to save her. He did not.

And as I read through Isaiah, and sat in church yesterday holding my other baby girl, I kept weeping.

Why am I so reluctant to trust the God who gave His only Son? It’s because He also took my baby girl. BUT if I can accept the salvation that comes through Jesus’ death, then that same power is how I trust even without my girl.

We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair’ persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.
2 Corinthians 4:8-10

This is the truth. We can NOT accept Jesus’ life without his death.

We can’t.

I trust this promise holds true in every aspect of our lives.

For me, carrying around my Mary Anna’s death has been a hardship that I never could have dreamt of, but it has brought me to Jesus. I will always carry her death, but carrying it has brought me life.

And as so many people, want me to move on… be strong… or whatever …

I have realized more this Easter that the gospel calls us never to let go of the death of Christ. We can’t have the resurrection without the death of God’s only Son.

Not everyone carries around the same death that I do, but we all carry some death around with us. The western world runs from death, but Jesus call us to run straight to Him, which means carrying His death.


Enjoy this Easter friends. I have some sweet lace that my babies will be wearing, and as we look pretty on the outside, our hearts will carry around our Mary Anna. Her death has brought us life.

Keep Walking

Feb 13


So tomorrow is Valentine’s Day.

My emotions have changed over the years about this day. I went from high expectations, to hating the holiday, to now being in a happy medium. I mean let’s be real, most of us have done all the above…

I was looking at my little loves this morning, one wearing mismatched pjs, and the other desperately wanting to just go, go, go. I asked William {2.5}:

K: Hey buddy, what do you want to do for Valentine’s Day tomorrow?

W: It not baaalentines day.

K: Buddy, tomorrow is Valentine’s Day, and it is a special day since mommy loves you, so we can do something special.

W: I want to stay home.

M: {hmmm… donut? pancake date? perhaps something else?}

W: Mommy, wipe my nose…

W: Hey mommy, let’s go to the bouncy house!

M: Okay buddy we can do that, but you don’t even like the bouncy house {insert image of the little boy who stands outside of the bouncy house saying it too loud and won’t go in one}

I looked back at Mary Kathryn and just smiled. I thought… I don’t have epic plans or sprinkles for my pancakes, but they’re in my kitchen, and were wiping noses and conquering fears, and this is love. I smiled again,

Then… a song came on my random Spotify radio.

I used to drive long dark mornings once a week while I was pregnant with Mary Anna, and they were scary and hard and lonely drives. I would listen to this song and eat chicken biscuits. I gained a lot of weight and a lot of tears on those drives.

This song still brings me to my knees, because after I lost her, I would remember those drives, and remember preaching to myself without even knowing it…

Oh, how he loves us
oh, how he loves.

And I realized that love is just this. It’s the messy mornings. It’s the tears over a baby who is not in our house. It’s the squeals of a busy 8 month old at my feet. It’s the sounds of trucks on my t.v.

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body.
2 Corinthians 4:7-11

When I read this verse the other day, it hit me, because so many people want the death of my baby girl to be “easier” for me, yet I find it harder the more that times goes by. I realized that if Christ calls us to carry around his death daily, that it is perfectly acceptable for me to continue to carry around the death of Mary Anna. Her death brought so much life to me, just as Christ death brings life to us.

So whatever it is that makes you have an extra spring in your step tomorrow or makes you feel a little weepy, just know that He does love us. He gave himself over so that we may live. And that bouncy houses in fact may not be the best option for your Valentines plans.

Keep Walking.

Oh… and take your littles for donuts and snuggle them tight. Life is too short.

Dec 25

Tiny Toes


It’s Christmas Eve!


It seems to come faster and faster every year.

This year has been so chaotic with a two-year old and a 6 month old, and yet these babies have made the season seem so much more magical than it ever has before. The birth and life of Jesus and teaching it to their little ears has just come alive in a different way to me.

I was snuggling William in bed the other night, and he loves to ask for “one more story… last time” over and over again, so I was doing just that. I have been telling him the Christmas story in a way that I feel like he can understand, so we have talked a lot about how Jesus was born in a “barn”, and of course the animals have been a hot topic of discussion. As I told that story again, William said to me, “There were no pigs there mommy, and Joseph took care of baby Jesus.” To hear how his little brain processes it all is too sweet.

And another rock star from the manager scene in our nightly story time are the angels. William seems to be interested in things that are “way up high”, which I assume is a little boy thing, so he thinks that the angles are pretty cool too…. As we were driving the other day he told me:

I wanna go way up high mommy

okay buddy why…

I wanna see Mary Anna and the angels

you want to what William? {tears welling up}

I wanna go up high and see Mary Anna with the angels

{tears streaming}

So it is Christmas Eve, and my heart is so full of wonder as I watch this wild little boy teach me about Jesus’ life in a whole new way. We have stacked presents, made treats, laughed, cried, rode trains, seen Christmas lights, and most importantly we have found the baby in a manger who makes Christmas real.

I grabbed Mary Kathryn so hard this morning while the Polar Express was blaring in the background really loud for the 500th time, and I squeezed her and cried. I miss Mary Anna. As I have a baby girl in my arms this year, it seems so sweet, yet so hard. My heart aches. As I prepared little girl things for MK to open, I wept. And something about the itties tiny little toes make me miss MACs tiny little toes.

As I texted a friend yesterday about my heart feeling so sad, she reminded me about the line in Jesus Storybook Bible that says:

everything sad will come untrue

And as the advent reading The Greatest Gift said the other day:

The herald of the King calls to you in this moment to come away from the crush and the crowds, to come away to a space of stillness to be ready for the coming of the Lord.
In the wilderness there are a few roads, so Christ is the only Way.
Rest here.
The wilderness offers you grace: we are most prepared for Christ, for Christmas, when we confess we are mostly not prepared. Rest here. There is only room in us when we are done with us.

I think that’s where I’ve tried to be this year. As a “prepared” kinda gal, the Savior has put me in a place where I feel like I walk daily in the wilderness. Walking with something that I can’t bear. Walking without my baby. I don’t like to camp, and I do not like to feel unprepared, yet I find myself in the wilderness unprepared. Especially at Christmas.

Rest here.

Merry Christmas.

Even if the toes in your house aren’t tiny anymore, kiss those sweet feet and find the King wherever you can. In the barn without the pigs. Or way up high with the angels. However it is, just find Him. He is there. He is coming soon to redeem all. He has and will redeem Christmas.

Keep Walking. Especially at Christmas.

Dec 02

For all the mommas out there

I have had two friends within two days text me and tell me that they feel inadequate. They feel worn out, like they don’t have enough to give, that they’re not good enough, that they just can’t do it all, and the list goes on… Sadly, I get that feeling. I feel that way too my momma friends.

It stems from a society that asks a question like this:

Do you work OR stay at home?

The key there is the “OR” part. I am not saying that working and being a mom is not hard. I tried it once, and at that time it did not work for my family, but because the world is so “woman power” these days, we feel like because we are women that we have to conquer it all. And we are free to conquer and do and provide yes, but not everything. We just can’t. We are one person taking care of lots of persons.

Men tend to be able to conquer more on paper, because they have that “one person” at home making lots of things happen for them. We feel like we have to equally conquer all the things that our “men” conquer, all the while still conquering everything at home and for our children too. Insert feelings of inadequacy here.

I get it. I don’t sit down. I don’t slow down. I feel like because I am at home that my house should be perfect, my kids should look cute, and there should always be warm meals. Oh and I feel this pressure to somehow find a part-time job that I can squeeze in and work 10 hours a week and provide the extra 30 grand that my family needs. Insert inadequacy.

We need a break mommas. We need to stop. We have to. I made myself come home after dropping off my two-year old wild man at moms day out, and I put the itty down, and I took some time for myself. It isn’t lazy or lack of motivation, it is working on this feeling of inadequacy. This advent season I am determined to read the gospel more, stare at my tree, have warm mugs of yummy things during nap time, and let this rich season set me up to stop feeling like it is my job to conquer it all. Because I just can’t. And I don’t have to.

Rejoice, Rejoice. Emmanuel.

He, our Emmanuel, came so we could stop this feeling like it is in our control to conquer. He already conquered.

Mercy friends. I saw this last night as William snatched a piece of nativity out of a little girls hand and said “THAT’S MY BABY JESUS”. I busted out laughing and wasn’t sure if I was more puffed up like “wahahha my two-year old knows who baby Jesus is”, or more embarrassed like “holy cow my two-year old just snatched baby Jesus, wow our nativity mindset needs some serious work”. Either way, talk about #momfail.

So I truly pray that as we welcome baby Jesus that we don’t snatch him away and want Him in the form of a toddler {selfish}, but that we come as an innocent babe and look at the wonder of this season. In the midst of inadequacy, hurt, loss, sorrow, messy houses, dirty dishes, miscarriages, broken relationships, and sinful children, I hope that somehow we find Jesus. He’s in this. We just have to look for Him.

Keep Walking Mommas.

YOU are worth something.

Something BIG.

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 9:6

Nov 11

God Our Father

William got in the car Wednesday from mom’s day out, and I asked him what he did that day at school. Usually he says: I play friends or I have a good day. His little responses don’t typically include great detail yet, because he’s just a little over 2 years old, but it’s always sweet to hear him say that he played or had a good day. This week we all were processing election news and the state of our country, so when he got in the car and I asked him how his day was and he said: I sing songs and the he proceeded to sing:

God our Father, God our Father
mumble mumble {he forgot some of the words}
thank you for our blessing, thank you for our blessing
ahhhhmennn, ahhhhmennnn

Ever since that day I can hear his little voice singing that in my head. Somehow in the midst of unrest, I have felt peace about one thing lately, and that is that God is our Father, and He promises to bless his people.

There has been a lot of hard stuff in our home lately wading through broken relationships and sadness and tackle a terrible election on top of it all, and dang y’all. dang.

Our home seems to feel heavy, our country is heavy, our hearts are heavy, and our little two-year old boy with big blue eyes and a big ole’ head of blonde hair reminds us of what is true. God our Father… Thank you for our blessing… Amen.

I’m processing a lot, and I just hope as you tackle whatever your world is throwing at you that you remember that the role of our King is not changing. The world is, but He will not.

Ahhhhmennnn. Ahhhmmmennn.

Keep Walking.

Oct 27

Gallery Wall

I have always wanted one of those cool gallery walls in my home with lots of family photos in one place. When we bought our house, I found the perfect place to do just that, and I also happened to find the perfect cooper frames on sale, so it was one of my first new house purchases. They sat in boxes for a while and got super dusty in the midst of our renovation, and then before Mary Kathryn was born, I was insistent that we get them hung.

Dan agreed and hung them for me one day during nap time. I’m not sure about your marriage, but in ours, hanging pictures is quite the stretch on marital commitment….

I hate measuring. D measures too much.

The struggle is real.

We did it though, and they were hung nicely for about 6 months with no pictures in them. Such is life right?

Well, last Friday when I was trying to pack for being gone for five days with two little ones, I finally sat down to order some pictures for my gallery wall. Because that’s a great time to accomplish such a thing right? The pictures came, and of course I did not order enough, but oh well… So far we have 3 out of 11 frames with pictures in them. I count it as major progress people.

I also ordered a newborn picture of Mary Kathryn to hang down our hallway. We have a picture of Mary Anna in a big frame and right next to it a picture of William, and poor MK just hasn’t made it to the wall yet. The truth is that I have had time to do these things, but I just frankly avoid them.

As Dan sat on our stairs yesterday and patiently centered the black and white pictures into my copper frames, we both were pretty silent. The first picture that he did was one of our favorites of Mary Anna, but it’s still the same picture at the same age, and nothing about it has changed and nothing will change. You see, as we grow as family my gallery wall will too, but the same pictures of MAC will just continue to rotate.

That’s a hard pill to swallow.

Today I tried MKs’ costume on her. She’s a fuzzy white lamb. And like I mean she’s the cutest. I can’t even handle it. But dressing her up makes me ache. The frames make me ache. Life makes me ache.

In a funny way, my kids somehow became a lion and a lamb for Halloween this year. We don’t really love Halloween at our house, but it is fun to dress up and have an excuse to eat sweets with our friends. We really focus on Thanksgiving around our house. As I have processed my little lion and lamb this year and the hole that is in our family with MAC not being here, I can’t help but cling to the true lion and the lamb, Jesus.

I didn’t plan for their fuzzy costumes to be Biblical at all. Seriously. It just happened to be the least tacky costumes at Target in their sizes, but it’s somehow helped me this year.


This sermon hits on all of this, so if you have time listen please.

So enjoy your fuzzy animals this weekend. Soak up the littles, because it’s true that babies don’t keep. And focus your eyes on the lion and the lamb.

…”Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.” Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne…
Revelation 5:5-6

Keep Walking.

Oct 13



I know people get tired of the whole pumpkin obsession, but I 100% don’t. Like please when fall comes, give me pumpkin EVERYTHING! I mean it. Thanks.

I try not to eat bagels and cream cheese daily for the sake of my thighs and everyone who has to look at them, but today I was/am in a funk. It can’t be shaken. I bought pumpkin cream cheese and cinnamon raisin english muffins, because I was at Trader Joe’s, and that store just gets why everything should come in the form of pumpkin.

Sunday night I texted my mom and asked her to come Monday morning, because I just couldn’t do Monday alone this week. She came, we got a flu shot, went to target, and we got pumpkins.

All of these things make me happy, but they also make me ache. I realize as the air is slowly turning crisp and the days keep getting shorter, that there is this pit in my stomach that I just can’t seem to shake. Hence the funk today.

I miss my girl.

She would be 3, and she would love pumpkins. Because her momma does. Her tiny white pumpkin sits on our porch right now, and I just smile picturing her carrying it around and giggling.

A friend texted me this last night…

To the grieving parent: On the days when no one but you mentions their name, I am so, so sorry. Say their name bravely. Know that they are still real, they were still here, and you are still theirs.


So that’s what I am going to do today. Eat my cream cheese and say Mary Anna proudly. It won’t take the funk away or make my head hurt any less, but at least I can know that she was real, she was here, and she is still mine.

Mary Anna,

My angel pumpkin girl. I miss you so deeply. I love the cool weather, and all I want to do today is order cozy sweaters from anthro, eat pumpkin things, and hold your tiny little hand. It hurts so bad to live without you here with us. I love you. I love you. I love you.

-your momma

Keep Walking.

Sep 20

… and never grow up

It’s one of those nights that you just want to remember forever…

It’s nothing fancy or out of the ordinary, but it’s just life in its simplest form.

I made a yummy dinner of eggplant pizzas from fresh eggplant from the farmers market. We had homemade sourdough bread dipped in olive oil and an easy salad with walnuts and a vinaigrette dressing. I had the kids bathed before daddy got home, and had Ray LaMontagne’s Pandora station playing on the t.v.

Not everything was perfect. William proceeded to throw lots of water out of the tub, while I was trying to get Mary Kathryn’s jammies on her. Daddy was home later than normal. It was too hot to play outside, so we had all been inside since early afternoon, but it was perfect in the most ordinary of Monday’s kinda way.

I sit now with some tunes softly playing, William jumping around the house saying “jumpin, jumpin, jumpin!”, and itty is sleeping in the swing. And buddy just stooped by the computer to say “hey mommy!”.

These are the nights that I want to savor. Nothing fancy or perfect but just ordinary.

Daddy just said, “Can we have a night like this every night and can y’all never grow up.” Amen daddy!

So I’ll go to sleep tonight with a full belly, probably some ice cream here in a bit and another glass of wine, and I will forever remember these nights…

with my people…

and we will cherish the ordinary but yet so perfect nights like these.

Keep Walking!