Why We Need to Look Behind Us

She dropped a penny in the fountain and squeezed her eyes tight.

I smiled at her face, full of wishing.

“What did you wish for?” I asked.

“I can’t tell you,” she whispered. And then she added, her voice thick with hope “But I’m wishing for tomorrow.”

My five year old ran off to catch up with her sister and left her words for me to ponder.

How much time  in the present do I spend wishing for tomorrow? I’m in this place of unknowns again. I have more questions than answers. I am constantly trying to figure out the next step.

How do we maintain Mercy House? What if people stop giving? How will we ever afford to buy land? How will we know what to do? Will our house sell? Where will we move? Will we adjust? Can we keep doing what we’re doing without burning out? How will all this happen? 

It’s exhausting. This wishing, worrying, wondering.

We will be spending a lot of our time in Kenya in two weeks focusing on the future of the organization. I have been researching, brainstorming, preparing for meetings. Can I be honest with you? I don’t know what I’m doing. I was saying just that to Maureen, knowing she felt it too, this pressure and burden and inadequacy.

As soon as I said the words out loud, I heard the still small voice:

Look where you are today, Kristen. Now look behind you. How did you get here?

I touched the picture on my desk, the one that holds the smiles of eight girls and eight babies. In that moment, I was reminded He holds tomorrow just like He holds today. I didn’t know how to get here. I didn’t have it figured out, there wasn’t a formula or instructions. He performed miracle after miracle and unfolded the days and weeks and months that led me to today.

I started recounting the past with Maureen. Remembering the mountains that stood before us, here we are standing on the other side of them. Sure, there are more mountains, some of the biggest yet. But He is the same.

And He is telling me today-and perhaps you–look behind you. You were there. And now you are here. I am the constant. I will carry you.

Tomorrow is still full of wishes, but today, I’m looking behind me.

WFMW: Staying Cool

And by cool, I don’t mean groovy.

Y’all, it’s getting hot in Texas. And by hot, I mean pray-for-a-breeze-so-your-sweat-feels-refreshing hot. Yes, that.

With my kidneys, I can’t get dehydrated and I’m constantly pushing and reminding my kids to drink water.

Besides living at the public pool, here are some ways we are staying cool:

  • water balloons are a regular at our house
  • frozen rags and ice packs
  • popsicles and ice cream
  • $1 spray bottles for outdoor playing

My kids saw these Mist ‘N Sip Bottles (amazon affiliate link) and started campaigning for them. I was all “we don’t spend $10 on water bottles.” But that was before flag football games in a billion degrees. So, I splurged.  You can sip water and then pump the trigger and a fine mist cools you off.

And now we are hydrated, misting fools. Just my little tip for staying cool this hot summer!
How do you stay cool? (don’t tell me it’s a high of 60 where you live!)

For the Dad Who Rocks {Giveaway}

UPDATE:  Lisa, comment #21, and Emily, comment #28, you are the giveaway winners.

I remember being enormously pregnant and overdue with my first baby. I was worried about everything an almost first time momma obsesses about. Or was that just me?  I fretted and doubted and would have Googled “how to keep baby alive” if the Internet had been around. (Yes, I’m that old).

But I never once worried if my husband would be a good father.

He is. And he was created to do this.

Even when his idea of putting this kids to bed involves A LOT OF NOISE.


I’m surrounded by good men.

My dad. My husband. My father-in-law. And a slew of others.

Father’s Day holds a lot of good memories for me and I can’t wait to celebrate the men in my life.

I think a really fun (and unique) way of honoring dads is by wearing a shirt that declares it to the world. My kids love their “Our Dad Rocks” shirts and I can always tell when my kids want something (they wear their shirt). Just kidding, I don’t want to give them any ideas.

Union28–MY FAVORITE T-SHIRT SHOP- has brand new children’s shirts!

Aren’t they adorable?? Kids not included.

Today, Union28 is giving away 2 of the new kids’ tees!

Leave a comment with a fatherly characteristic you appreciate in your husband or father as your entry. Leave it on Union28 ‘s Facebook page for an extra entry!

Please note: size small are sold out and if you don’t have kids or prefer a different choice, winner can instead choose a $25 gift certificate).

Well, Hello Summer

And just like that *snap* school is out!

The elementary school my children attended does a Clap Out to usher the 4th graders to their new school. This is my second Clap Out. I’ve cried twice so far. Dear Time, please stop. You’re making a mess of my face. Love, Me.

In a few months, my kids will be at three different, new schools in an undecided location (as our house is on the market) but I don’t want to talk about that.

Let’s focus on this sign that welcomed my kids home after a great school year:

We have a last day o’ school tradition: It starts with the word Silly and ends with the word String.

Our epic trampoline battle is always fun:

And it really only fun around our house if someone cries:

We are so ready for you summer, bring it!