God has a funny was of circling back around, and bringing old friends back into your life. Years ago I met Casey at my friends 21st birthday party. Neither of us knew a lot of people so we kinda clung close throughout the day. She was this gentle spirit that I was just drawn to.
Fast forward a few years, and I was camp counselor in college in Missouri, and I randomly see Casey...she's there picking up her brother who was one of my campers. Weird. Small world stuff.
Fast forward a good 5 years later when I'm living out in SoCal, and a friend sent me a blog they thought I would like to read, and whose blog was it? Casey's. This person that I had met here and there, and adored, now was telling her journey and her life through her words and pictures in a very powerful way. I emailed her, and we reconnected. When I was home for Christmas Casey graciously had me over to her house, and I felt like we had been friends all along, all throughout the last 8 years since we first met.
Casey is impacting culture and thousands of people's lives through sharing her story her joys and heartaches, her ups and downs in raw honesty; it's refreshing.
We need more Casey's in this world. Enjoy getting a little peak into her world...
Q: You have an incredibly successful blog. Did you ever think you would be a blogger? How did your journey into blogging begin?
A: I was going through some messy stuff a few years ago, and read this quote by Leslie:
"If you haven't already gathered, or happen to be reading this blog for the first time in your life, I am a melancholy girl through and through. I find beauty in not only the beautiful things in life, but the bittersweet and sad as well. To me, there is something poignantly lovely about the human experience from its splendor to its grief. God created all our emotions, not just the happy ones, and for His good purposes. That's why a good cry can feel so good. And hitting our limits forces us to look outside ourselves for a Savior. It is in the plea, when we're at our end, that we can find that which is truly life-giving. Personally, my moments of deepest grief, deepest pain, have resulted in the most beautiful seasons in my heart. I've met God more intimately in those moments than in all the other pleasant ones combined. What isn't completely lovely about that?"
In a moment where I felt alone...heartbroken, angry.....I read this and suddenly felt like someone out in the world possibly understood.
Two years ago, I started speaking out on my beliefs. I started talking about mama stuff, some heartache, struggles, csection scars, NICUs, my miscarriage....and that's not the half of it.
I wanted (and still do) this to be a blog/ a place of inspiration, uplift, joy...but also truth. Because life is hard.
A lot of us have been through some seriously icky stuff.
And so I wanted this also to be "real".
It's easy to take beautiful family photos and pretend to have it all together-but who does that help?
(Read more about Casey’s beautiful journey into blogging HERE.
Q: Have you ever gotten to a place where you have not been balanced? What happened, and how did you get back to having your priorities straight?
A: Yes. When I first started writing on my blog, I tried to say yes to everything and meet any need that came my way. And that got out of balance quickly. I quickly realized how much i was missing. I was missing it all. So that is when I decided to say no more and keep my family first at all times no matter what needs to be accomplished for a day.
Q: What in your day-to-day life inspires you?
A: My kids inspire me in ways I never imagined possible.
My marriage inspires me.
Music: I adore anything on the Hotel Cafe Christmas Album, and am a huge Priscilla Ahn fan! Plus I love John Mayer's music! His music always has a way of moving my soul.
Nature: outside at a park or walking on a beach...eyes closed, waves crashing--all recipes for inspiration.
Books: My favorite book is “A Beautiful Offering” by Angela Thomas, all of it inspires me.
Q: What are 5 of your most favorite things (anything from a moment in time, to candy, to music, to movies, etc.)
A: The moment that I met each of my babies for the first time,
sour patch kids,
sleeping on a beach with the waves crashing and the sun shining,
my wedding day,
and watching my kids experience or see something for the very first time.
Q: Do you have any advice for people who want to begin a career out of blogging?
A: Be Yourself. Share your life, even the messy parts. Connect with People. Love People Well. Don't ever share something that would hurt someone else.
Q: How do you want your blog to impact others?
A: I desperately hope that I can share Christ, that I can help fellow women and mamas feel less alone, and that I can inspire women to pursue their passions and their purpose.
Q: One thing that stands out to me about your blog is your raw honesty about some pretty personal moments in your life and the life of your family. That takes a lot of courage. What motivates you to share from such deep places?
A: People need to hear our stories. Our voices, heartaches, and stories being shared help people. When I wrote about losing our baby, at the time, it was an outlet for me. I was just writing to get through the emotions. To process.
I had no idea that over a year later I would still get daily emails of women walking that road.
I had no idea how much it would help other women feel less alone.
I love to write. I love to connect with people. Blogging is such a beautiful opportunity to do both.Then as I went to hit publish on a post an email came in (made a few changes to the names to keep it anonymous):
I just want to thank you for your sweet blog posts under Loss. I used to read everything you wrote. I had 4 kiddos, love art and just loved everything about your style. Then we lost our 11 year old son. For the last 6 months I haven’t read anything. Until tonight. I got to reading your family blog and have never felt such truth. As if you could know what I was thinking and put it in words. It felt good. Thank you for pouring out your heart. What a blessing.
Knowing my words could help just one person blesses me so much. You get to leave a "footprint"... What footprint do you have to leave? It can be anything. God has gifted everyone with talents and passions. We all have stories. Share it.
Living out your purpose.
and sharing your journey along the way.
Q: It's 2013, a year of New Beginnings. Do you have any goals for this year? What are some of them?
A: I do! I have some big dreams and want to take a big leap of faith on two of them this year. Stay tuned ;)
Q: Do you have a quote that you keep closeby to encourage you on hard days?
A: YES! Its is from “A Beautiful Offering” by Angela Thomas. This quote moves my soul:
"When you decide to live out what you believe. When you decide you want peace in your possession, then you will find out what that looks like & feels like. You begin to pray for God to give you peace. You incorporate peace in your relationships. You decide to respond differently. You speak in love. Act in tenderness. You imitate what you know about peace until it becomes a reality for your character & your life."