Links I Love: Mercy Shop Edition

Check out these awesome donations added to The Mercy Shop this week. 100% of the proceeds go to The Mercy House:

The Fight for Dinner

There is an hour in my day that I protect fiercely.

I don’t allow the ring of phones or the intrusion of the Internet. I ignore the door and hold off the undeniable force that tries to threaten this time. I fight for the hour a day when my babies and spouse circle around the table.

I fight for dinner.

It’s not about the food that is sometimes good, sometimes not. It’s not about me and an audience. Dinner is about the conversation, the laughter, the being together. Some days I feel like I’m against Hell itself, warring to interrupt this precious time.

Dinner is loud. It’s not organized or perfect. It’s getting up and down, filling up, knocking over. Dinner is a pause in our busy day. Dinner is our connection.

As my kids get older, I notice there’s a stronger pull away from this family time. There may be play dates vying at the door, sport practices with their demands, meetings at work and school, but I fight them all. Even though I occasionally lose the battle and dinner is a mismatched, half-hazard attempt with a traveling husband or a dash out the door to a meeting, I am rebellious against the things that try and steal away this treasured hour.

Did you know that research has proven that families that eat dinner together:

  • have kids who are less likely to use drugs
  • are noted as happier families
  • have kids who have better grades
  • enjoy stronger marriages
  • kids adjust better in life in general
  • produce healthier kids with better eating habits

And when teenagers were polled about the importance of regular family meals, an overwhelming majority craved family meal time together more often!

So. Throw out the excuses! (You don’t like to cook, there are practices and busy schedules, etc) Change it. Make dinner a priority. Don’t let the world, and hobbies demand how you raise your family. Be creative to get that one hour together.

Because really, we’re talking about a lot more than dinner.

On Flags, Dreams and Mercy

Since I was in high school, then a youth pastor’s wife, now a mom of school-aged kids, I’ve gotten up early on the third Wednesday in September and held hands around the flag pole and prayed. It’s not a strange, cultish ritual, it’s See You at the Pole. And it’s awesome. I love hearing nervous, young voices pray in front of their school. I love seeing teachers take a stand and join us. I love that we live in a country that allows us this freedom.

And for my own comic relief:


I’m talking about God-sized dreams that are a size too big with Holley today. I’d love for you to dream big with me. (Plus, there’s a giveaway!)


Speaking of giveaways, here are the winners from The Mercy House launch last week:


Shop Mercy. New donated items are added every day to benefit The Mercy House.

WFMW: Snack Baskets

My kids love snacks. They get it from my hips me.

I keep fun snacks and healthy snacks in the pantry. I make them alternate. Something healthy, something not-as-healthy.

Something that has really helped me to do this: snack baskets.

I keep three baskets on the bottom shelf of the pantry at kid-level. I always open up the packages of peanut butter crackers or honey buns (which would fall under not-as-healthy) and dump them in the baskets. They can have their pick of what’s in the basket.

It really cuts down on the “Moommm, there’s nothing to eat!”

I keep a fruit snack basket out on the counter all the time, too, for healthy choices.

Snack baskets work for my hips me!

BeWee Shop {Giveaway}

Congratulations, Michelle (! You’re the winner!

I love pretty things. Little hair clips and headbands and hats.

My 3 year has not acquired that love, HOWEVER. She often hands me a clip with a chunk of hair attached to it.

Thankfully, my big girl loves feminine touches. But that has it’s drawbacks too…because I now parent a borrower. And we’re the same shoe size. Let’s just say my accessories are her accessories!

The BeWee Shop is a collection of adorable hair accessories. They sent me a pretty headband to wear to the Relevant Conference (woot!) and my oldest a beautiful beanie…which I was going to save for Christmas.

But when her orthodontist asked her to be one of the kids in a photo shoot for the cover of our town magazine, I caved.

(The other girls and the dental assistants LOVED her beanie!!)

Not only does BeWee Shop have adorable items, for every beanie they sell, one is given to a girl at Dell Children’s hospital in Austin, Texas. (Now, y’all know how I love a good cause!)

Each pair of beanies is numbered before they go their separate ways, and the beanie givers can leave get well notes for the little girl that receives the other beanie in the hospital… or people can just write notes of encouragement to help fill those long hospital days.

Seriously, LOVE.

Visit the BeWee Shop, tell me what you like, come back and leave a comment to be entered to win a $50 gift certificate!

This giveaway ends on Thursday.