First Days Can Be Tough

First days can be tough. Especially for the overthinkers. The big feelers. The sensitive ones. For us, the anxious souls who don’t slip into newness with ease, first days are met with dread rather than anticipation. The worst case scenario seems entirely possible....

Write Your Own Ending

For the majority of my life I've hated Father's Day. A day meant to honor that man in my life that was a solid foundation. A steady presence. A protector. A day set aside for a man I've never known. That not knowing is tough. Harder some days than others, harder than...

Lighting the Path

Within an hour of learning that the highly successful fashion designer Kate Spade had taken her own life, I learned of a local teenager who'd made the same gut-wrenching choice. I can think of no clearer example of how nondiscriminatory mental illness is. Kate Spade...

Picking Up The Pieces

It is often said that those who serve together in the military or police form a deep bond that the outside world cannot understand. These individuals are willing to sacrifice themselves in order to serve their brothers and sisters. One such soldier came to Acres for...

Pushing Life Away

This is yet another testimony to the amazing, life-saving therapy of Acres for Life. Monica's childhood was nowhere close to idyllic. Instead, it was brutal. Monica's mother had been left on the doorstep of an orphanage as a baby. She wasn't adopted until age seven....

Who We Used To Be

My little family does a lot together. My husband and I don't typically go out much without our son. Fortunately, we enjoy many of the same things and each other. I'm usually happiest when we are together. However, from time to time my husband and I need some time to...

The Days In Between

Many years ago I purchased a wooden sign that has since hung in our living room. It reads "These are the good old days" and I knew when I saw it that those words were true. I was happily married, lived in a new house, had a decent job, and was enjoying life. Surely...

I Wish I Could Blame the Onions

I cried today. That isn't terribly unusual for me. A typical day involves me tearing up at some point. The tears come easily with empathy. They come out of joy as well. I wish I could blame the onions. Today though, I didn't just tear up, today I wept. My son says...

An Intro to Acres for Life

Have you ever heard a story that gave you goosebumps? Have you ever struggled to make sense of something? Have you ever found a cause you felt called to support? I recently found a place where all three of these things happened. I heard stories that were the most...

2018 Word of the Year

It seems to be a popular thing these days to pick a word of the year. Since I have a thing for words this is a trend that I can get on board with. A few years ago, my word was stronger. Last year I chose the word still. I chose it because I felt like I needed to slow...

7 Simple Steps to a Better Year

You know the drill. The new year approaches and you might feel compelled to jot down a few resolutions. We all want to do better, be better, live better and so resolutions seem like the thing to do. I've noticed that my resolutions are usually about giving up things I...

Leave Room for Magic

Some of my most vivid childhood memories are that of decorating for Christmas with my Grandma. I can remember the dusty smell of the Christmas boxes. I can envision the multi-colored lights reflecting off the paneling of the small living room walls. I can feel the way...

Could YOU Be The Cure?

Some stories are sparked with passion and my fingers race to keep pace with the words formulating in my mind. Other stories marinade for months before ever coming to fruition. This story began as the later, it has remained unfinished on my computer for several months....

Made in Minnesota Gift Guide

This is my favorite time of year. I love Christmas and am pretty fond of shopping. While Black Friday deals do offer some adrenaline rush they aren't typically what I'm after for gifts. It is a great time to pick up things you need, but gifts should be special. This...

The Last Bath

As he scrubbed the dirt from his knees and splashed about I tried to be discrete about wiping my tears. I was happy after all. I was fully aware of what a gift this was. Rarely, do we know when the last time for something is. Often we think we can’t wait to be done...

We All Have Boots to Fill

Twenty-three pairs of empty boots lined up in rows. My heart hurt looking at them, but I must look. I must visualize the soldier that once wore those boots with pride. I must ponder their roles as sons and daughters, husbands and wives, fathers and mothers, friends,...

A Note From The PTA

This post was originally shared on Her View From Home. This year I will serve as the president of our school's parent-teacher association. This follows three years of volunteering and one as vice president. Consider this my state of the union speech. It seems to me...

Spread Your Wings

One summer day while shooting hoops in the driveway with my boy I noticed a moth on the ground. I can't say for sure, but I think it was the recipient of a dribble. It was alive but injured. At first glance, it was just an ordinary moth. Its grey wings blended into...

Pink is for the Girls

This post is in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It is October and there is pink everywhere. Honestly, some of the places I see pink seems a bit silly to me. Does an NFL player wearing pink socks do anything? I'm not sure, but perhaps the cumulative effect...

Not Seeing the Forest for the Trees

After the water from Harvey had receded and the winds of Irma calmed Montana was still burning. Over 1,000,000 charred acres. Many of us live in suburban jungles where the typical yard is a quarter acre, we really can't comprehend such a vast space. Denis Malone has...