Posts in the Category: General


By Posted in - General on May 20th, 2014 45 Comments

I just loaded up more than twenty bags and boxes for a garage sale this weekend—not mine, of course, because of all the things in the world I’m terrible at, running a garage sale …

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On Finding Your Passion

By Posted in - General on May 13th, 2014 28 Comments

Lately I’ve been speaking quite often on the topics of calling and passion, specifically as those topics relate to marriage and parenting and family—what it looks like to build space into a marriage and a …

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A Mother’s Day Book List

By Posted in - General on May 7th, 2014 40 Comments

Mother’s Day always makes me think of books—maybe because of all the things that are so very different about my mother and I, one way we’re absolutely one thousand percent the same is that …

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On Laundry & Love Stories

By Posted in - General on April 29th, 2014 38 Comments

If I have learned anything at all this year, it’s that marriages never get better on accident, and they never get better on leftovers.

I chatted with a new friend in Nashville last week. She …

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On Vulnerability & Cats

By Posted in - General on April 16th, 2014 33 Comments

So I asked Twitter & Facebook friends for a blog topic that was non-boring, and the very first response was VULNERABILITY.

Done. Everyone, it seems, is talking about vulnerability right now, which is fantastic. I credit …

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Why I Love Thursday Nights

By Posted in - General on March 19th, 2014 47 Comments


You know I believe friendship is God’s greatest evidence of himself here on earth.  You know I believe everyone needs a home team: a go-to, show-up, middle of the night, come-in-without-knocking tribe …

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All the Things

By Posted in - General on January 16th, 2014 36 Comments

I know, I know. It’s January 16th. We’re well into a brand spanking new 2014, but I’m still catching up. Nothing about the end of December and the beginning of January went according to plan–although …

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Merry Christmas!

By Posted in - General on December 24th, 2013 11 Comments

Merry Merry Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

This year was a feast: full to bursting with moments and experiences and conversations that I’ll keep in my heart …

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Present Over Perfect

By Posted in - General on December 10th, 2013 19 Comments

This is a repost, because it’s that time again. The phrase I’m keeping with me through this season: PRESENT OVER PERFECT.

Here we are, Christmastime. T-15 days until the big day, and if …

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New Liturgy Giveaway Winners

By Posted in - General on December 9th, 2013 2 Comments

First, when you have a few minutes, please read through the comments–they’re amazing! So many stories of how people have experienced God’s presence and the places that have become holy ground along the way. Wow.

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Giveaway: Our Common Mug

By Posted in - General on November 19th, 2013 577 Comments



Thank you, thank you, thank you for all your comments about my last post, and for sharing it. It’s a topic I’m so passionate about, obviously, and it’s such an honor to talk about both my mom and my church–I’m so proud of both.

It’s been ages since we’ve done a giveaway here, and this is one I’ve been excited about for a long time–I’m so happy the big day is here!

I love products that have a story behind them, things that are created to be more than things–ways to mark something or connect people or capture an experience. Our Common Mug was created by my dear friend Blaine and his best friend Jarrod to honor their valuable long-distance friendship and to create a ritual to sustain it. I could not love this more, of course.

When you order your mugs, one comes to you, and one is shipped to your long-distance person–best friend, boyfriend, grandmother–whoever it is that you want to share a cup of coffee with, first thing in the morning, across the distance. Like those half-a-heart best friend necklaces we had in 7th grade, except lovely and made of ceramic and created to mark a ritual: morning coffee with someone you love.

I will, of course, send my first mug to my best friend Annette. Lucky ducks that we are, she was in town last weekend, and we’re going out to see her family this weekend. But like any long-distance friends know, sometimes seeing them almost makes it harder–reminds you what you miss, reminds you what you wish you could experience with them every day. Annette and I are both serious, non-negotiable, first-thing-in-the-morning coffee drinkers, and I love the idea that when we both reach for our first cups in the morning, we’ll think of one another, and we’ll be thankful for the gift that our friendship is.

Here’s a little more about the idea from Blaine and Jarrod: 

In graduate school, we were together every day doing all the stuff best friends do. Coffee, class, gym, dinner, study, laugh, Wii tennis, repeat. Until one day, life pulled us apart.

One of us drove across the country. The other flew west. Families started, jobs began, and the distance grew.

Two-thousand miles and two time zones made everything from finding a time to talk to finding an affordable flight nearly impossible. As we struggled to stay in touch, we longed for the everyday rituals we once had – like morning coffee.

Even though our daily routines were different – both now with babies and briefcases – we started each day with a cup of coffee.

That’s when it hit us…

What if instead of just coffee, it was the mug we had in common?

AND, what if that mug represented everything about the distance we disdained and the friendship we desired to deepen?

Like the length of a string that used to connect best friends between tin cans and tree houses, Our Common Mug has become the new piece of string that connects us between time zones.

Perfect Christmas present times one thousand, right? Don’t you have a list in your mind of all the people that would love this sweet gift? I want to send one to my brother who lives on a boat, my friend Emily in Kalamazoo, my friend Kirsten in Alameda. And you can order one for yourself, and then more than one to send out…to a group of college girlfriends, to your siblings who live all over the country? I love the idea of being connected through a beautiful object, one that tells a story of love and friendship across a distance.

The mugs go on sale TODAY, and I’m giving away one set–I don’t even have my own set yet! You’re so lucky!

Just leave a comment with who you’d send your mug to and why, and I’ll choose one winner at random on Thursday at noon CST. Ready, set, go!

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