7th September 2016


“Do you see her?  That girl, the one with the long blonde hair in a ponytail?  That’s who I am.  That’s what I look like.”  I was playing pretend with my sister, and of course I wanted to look different.  Short and thin with mousey brown hair and enormous pink glasses wasn’t who I wanted to be – in real life, or pretend.  Most days I wanted to be tall, thin, and blonde, with my hair pulled back into a bouncy ponytail or a long braid.  Sometimes I would even go the extra mile and put a pair of pantyhose on my head to get the desired effect of long hair!

For whatever reason, I thought that if I looked different, I was different.  As silly as it sounds, pantyhose on my head made me stand taller, be more bold, and act more confident.  When the game ended I went back to being regular old Holly, shy and quiet, afraid of making mistakes.

Not a lot has changed since those days.

Some days I’m happy with who I am:  A wife and mother, writer and business owner.  I have a loving husband and two amazing children. I’m happy with who I am and who where I am.

But then I see Amy, and nothing in my world seems good enough.

I’m not good enough.

* * *

See, Amy is everything I’m not.

She has three children under the age of five, but somehow she never looks less than amazing.  Her Pinterest boards are full of hairstyles and outfit combinations she clearly has the time to try.  Her girls are always dressed beautifully – and fashionably! – with their soft, untangled curls pulled back into perfect, complicated braids.  Her son doesn’t have any unruly cowlicks or dirt under his fingernails. Her children are always spotless and unwrinkled, and they are unfailingly polite.

Amy is never harried, never frantic, and never out of breath.

She’s a stay at home mom just like me, but she runs a direct from home sales business that makes enough money for her and her husband to escape on tropical vacations a couple of times each year.

And she homeschools.

* * *

On the outside, Amy looks like she has it all, and she has it all together – but does she really?

Do any of us?  

Or are we all just wearing pantyhose on our heads, trying to be something we’re not?

* * *

Sometimes I think that if I could be anyone in the entire world, I would be Amy.

But God didn’t make me Amy, he made me me.

Sometimes I wonder why he made me the way he did. Why do I have to be so short? Why doesn’t my hair cooperate when I try anything other than a simple ponytail? Why can’t I be more stylish? More outgoing? More easygoing? More confident?

Why can’t I be anybody but me?

Then I remember that God made “all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.” (Psalm 139:13, NLT) He made me short and thin, he made my mousey brown hair, he made the eyes that require enormous glasses. He created me, he knows me – and all of my insecurities.

I am a daughter of the King, and that is enough.

I am enough.

And so are you.

Link Love

2nd September 2016

What a week!

Topher and Ellie both started school – Topher in grade one, Ellie in preschool.


Topher was a little bit nervous about being gone all day after only doing half-day kindergarten, but he was super excited to get the teacher he wanted and have most of his friends in his class!  When I picked him up the first words he said to me were “I wish school was as long as Daddy’s work, because I love, love, LOVE it!”


And Ellie was thrilled to be starting school just like her big brother.  When her teacher bent down to introduce herself, Ellie jumped right into her arms for a big hug!

Clearly we need to watch her with strangers …

I’m most likely going to be spending a good chunk of my weekend lost in a corn maze, so here are a few posts from some of my favourite writers to keep you entertained!  Enjoy!

* * *

I love everything Hannah Brencher writes, but Men in Blue Jumpsuits is one of my absolute favourite posts.

“I think we– as the eager, self-sufficient perfectionists that we are– ignore red flags and the nudging to slow down as long as we possibly can. We drink more coffee. We worship the hustle. We grow tired of waiting on a God who sometimes seems to be slower than dial-up internet. We say hasty things like, “You aren’t handling this mess fast enough so I am going to take it into my own two hands.”

More mess comes.

And still, God is not afraid to assume the role of custodian.”

In her post, A Creative, Suzy Krause asks “Who has time to be a Creative when one is a Mom?”

Colleen Pastoor shared some Thoughts on Kindness – a reminder to be friendly on the internet.  I don’t know why it’s so hard for some people to remember that they’re talking to real people when they leave nasty comments!

And I loved The Fleece by Ashlee Gadd.  Nothing good ever comes easy – not even if it’s your calling.

* * *

Happy long weekend!  

Faith & Hockey Sticks

1st September 2016


Two years ago my husband and I signed our son up for skating lessons.  He’s been dreaming about playing hockey since he was old enough to walk.  He was born in Oil Country, he bleeds copper and blue – heck, he even eats dinner sitting below a framed photo of his dad with Ryan Smyth!

We figured it was time.

Topher was ecstatic!  Never mind that he was enrolled in beginner figure skating – he was convinced he had been drafted to the Oilers!

But skating wasn’t as easy as Topher thought it would be.  It’s one thing to zip up and down the hallway with a plastic hockey stick and entirely another to do the real thing!

In his first lesson the coaches taught the kids how to fall down and how to get back up, first on mats and then on the ice.  Topher was a pro … until he stepped onto the ice.   He did exactly what his coaches told him:  get on your hands and knees, wag your tail like a dog, get one foot up, brace one hand on your knee and use the other to push off on the ice and stand up.

But Topher couldn’t do it.

Not in the first lesson, or the second, or the third.  Eventually one of his coaches would help him to his feet so he could participate in the other activities, but Topher was so afraid to fall that he would barely move. Then one of the other kids would accidentally bump into him and knock him over, and he would be back to Square 1, shaking his little bum in the middle of the rink.

Halfway through his fourth lesson I was starting to wonder how much patience his teachers had.  Would they recommend remedial beginner skating lessons?

Join me at Anchored Voices to read the rest!

Around Here

29th August 2016

Am I the only one who can’t believe that summer is coming to an end?  Both Topher and Ellie start school on Thursday and I’m in hardcore denial.  I have three full days of outdoor fun planned before then with the hope of hanging on to summer as long as possible!

Here are a few of my favourite photos from the past two months:


Ellie discovered Barbies.  The attraction was short-lived:  I think she spent two days dressing and undressing her Barbie before she got bored and went back to playing with her Paw Patrol action figures.


We celebrated Canada Day!


Topher had bronchitis for the first two weeks of his summer vacation, and spent a lot of time at the doctor’s office as a result.  Poor little guy!


We painted with ice cubes, a summer activity I highly recommend!  I think it provided an entire 22 minutes of entertainment!


Topher took a light saber training class at the local library and emerged with all body parts intact.


He also baked a cake all by himself!  It wasn’t exactly edible, but we all ate some anyway.


I learned to crochet.  So far I’ve made two lopsided washcloths, a scarf, a blanket and a half, and I’m working on my first hat.


Thunder.  Lightning.  Hail.  Torrential rain.  A leaking tent.  Oh, and food poisoning.  But we survived camping!


I spent lots of time in my happy place!

How did you spend your summer? 

When Dreams Change

15th August 2016

“Well?” he said, waiting for an answer. “What are you going to do?”

We were sitting in his office – him, leaning back in his chair with his feet on his desk, me, in the swivel chair across from him with my feet tucked beneath me, spinning myself around and around and around as I tried to make a decision.

I had been planning the cross-country move for more than a decade. I attended university after high school like my parents wanted, even earning a “sensible degree” in economics – but my passion had always been horses. The deal was that if I graduated from university, my parents would support me in whatever I chose to do next, even if that meant moving 3000 miles away to study horses at the best school of its kind in the country.

Hours earlier I had received a letter from that school informing me that I had been wait listed. They allowed ten students into the English Horsemanship program and I was unlucky number eleven. I had flown across the country a month before to tour the school and perform a riding test. I made one mistake – picking up the wrong canter lead and not correcting it quickly enough – and I was done. “You’re welcome to try again next year!” the letter said.

What was I going to do? 

I shared the answer (and the rest of this post!)  at Anchored Voices earlier this month.  I hope you’ll join me there!