Important Life Lessons Before College


Hi everyone! For those in Michigan-what is up with these warmer temperatures!  I’m not going to question it, I’m just thankful for each day we don’t have to battle freezing temperatures, ice and snow!  Also, where did January go?  Usually it just drags by, but this year it has flown!  I’m not sure why, but I think it might have to do with the fact that time is racing too quickly as we prepare for our oldest to graduate from high school in June!

So I have had this panicky feeling over the past few months of trying to think of everything I need to teach her before she leaves the nest!  Now we have had 17 years to try to impart wisdom and knowledge to her but I’ve realized over the past couple of months that some things may have been overlooked.  Some of the basics she has been doing for a while-she does her own laundry, makes a mean bowl of mac and cheese and is driving herself to school and work.  However, I find myself randomly quizzing her on things: Do you know how to address and stamp a letter, write a check, make a dentist appointment and so on.  I’ve been teaching her about stranger danger since she was a toddler but I had a feeling of pure fear picturing her walking home from a college class at night!

When I step back and take a breath, I realize she will be okay.  We have taught her some of the most important things: love God, be thankful, love family, have a heart for service, treat others the way you want to be treated, work hard, and find some time for fun.   As she gets ready to transition into adulthood and test her wings out in the big world, I know she will have many more lessons to learn.  But as in everything, I have learned to give it all to God, she is His beloved child and I know He is with her each step of the way.

…And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

Matthew 28:20

So how about you veteran parents out there that have sent your babies off to college?  What should be on my list of things to know before you leave the nest?  I welcome your ideas in the comments!



Reflections – Things I Learned in 2015




Dear faithful readers,

It has been awhile since a posting has been made, but we haven’t gone away, just been busy with life.

I like to learn….I always have. School was fun for me, and college was even more fun as I was older and wiser and more interested. The other part of learning that I sometimes like, and sometimes don’t like, are life lessons. Some days it seems life is teaching us too much! I would like to share with you a few life lessons I learned in 2015.

  1. It really hurts to have a friend die young, and it’s incredibly hard watching his mother suffer. Death is not easy.
  2. Having surgery is not fun. I had two and hope that is it for the rest of my life. Take care of your health.
  3. Having had surgery I realize how many people cared and worried and prayed for me! Be grateful for family and friends.
  4. I am blessed with an incredible family both immediate and extended. I hear others talking about family feuds or yelling that goes on. There is none of that in our family, none. Even out to second and third cousins, we all have fun together. Make peace not war with your family.
  5. I’m blessed to have a family and people I can count on. I’ve met many people over the last year who really have no one and that is just terribly sad. Don’t stop talking to someone over stupid things.
  6. I can create and be easily inspired. Again, I’ve encountered a lot of people who can’t even tell you what they enjoy doing. Find a hobby.
  7. Pets are family, and losing one really hurts. There is no thing as, “it’s just a dog.”
  8. Laughter really is the best medicine. My friends and I from high school try to meet monthly for lunch. What a connection and what a LOT of laughing occurs at our lunches! Stay connected!
  9. Help other people. It really makes you feel good and lightens the load for other people. If you want to feel better, help someone else.
  10. Last, but not least, enjoy life. We only have today. Don’t fret with anxiety over things you not only have no control over, but things that may not ever happen. What a waste of energy. Live life to the fullest. Don’t hide.

I hope this has given you a few things to think about and contemplate. Here we are with another year beginning. My wish for you all, is that it’s the best one yet.

Happy New Year 2016


Lessons in Powerlessness

Hi there website world. This is Julie. I have to thank Jennifer for covering for me the last week. My back put me totally out of commission for several days. Lets put it this way…I got a bonus vacation this summer…from Wednesday to Saturday I was in the hospital trying to get things under control (thank GOD it settled down.) Adding insult to injury was the fact that my birthday was on Thursday.For once I had laid out a full day of birthday plans for myself!! I was going to go to the beach, and then head to the Armada Fair to hear my favorite country music star Mr. DeWayne Spaw in concert! So Thursday, the big day, arrives and I still can’t walk. all know I’m an inspirational kind of lady hence the website :), and I decided it wasn’t going to depress me. So I picked out the positive things of the day. Number one…I was served not only breakfast in bed…but lunch and dinner too!! And it was quiet…no demands, nobody needing me for anything. And they gave me very nice things to help me relax. And my family didn’t forget me or my birthday!!! The day ended with my husband, mom and my two youngest girls and their families showing up with cupcakes and presents. Not the day I had planned, but hey it worked!!! I truly learned the meaning of being powerless last week. Powerless is a topic I talk about a lot in my job. How we sometimes have to just accept that things are what they are and we just have no control. I could have been whiny and pouty or accept what was and deal with it. I chose to deal with it and it made all the difference in the world! So…I guess I am growing too. Now this story kind of has a cool ending because today I was well enough to go to the beach. Doctors orders were to rest and relax and what better place to do it than the beach!! I spent some quality time with my sister and niece and even got to introduce my niece to a little rock collecting (I think I found my rock hunting buddy!!!) We ended the day with a girls only bonfire and smores!!! So while it wasn’t my birthday today, we took the opportunity to just enjoy “being.” It’s important to find time just to “be”!! I encourage you all to try it!!! Hope you all have a wonderful week!! Check out the pictures of our great day!!



Beach day I truly learned the meaning of being powerless last week. Powerless is a topic I talk about a lot in my job. How we sometimes have to just accept that things are what they are and we just have no control. Beach hats Julie and Jen bonfire Liza at Beach