Free shipping on all orders over $75🎄

 

The other day I stumbled upon a coupon from the past that had never been redeemed. The yellowed index card boasted the signs of an elementary school project, with novice pencil printing and amateur attempts at drawing boughs of holly…

wisdom coupon

I must have gifted my mom this coupon back in the day when clay ashtrays and Dixie Cups with pipe cleaner handles were in vogue. The coupon was good for five errands done cheerfully and willingly. My mom would have never redeemed this coupon; it’s simply not her style. Also, my brother and I were raised by a woman that taught us that helping out family was not an option; it was expected.

This was the reason my errand coupon was never cashed in. It never had to be.

I found this childhood gem in my parent’s basement, in a cardboard box that had the battle scars of one too many apartment moves from my past. The box was filled with letters and cards I had received from my mom over the years. Even though my address changed more times than I like to admit, the return address always remained the same. Often times it was embellished with my mom’s unique flair…

wisdom return1

Her words were always written, never typed, and the content was delivered on everything from goofy holiday cards to scraps of paper. There was even a period of time when all correspondence from mom was penned on “Last Will And Testament” stationary she had scored at a local auction…

wisdom last will

Sometimes her mailings would include personal effects that were comforting reminders from home. Things like a random prayer card reminding me that even “Fallen-Away Catholics” should still offer up prayer…

wisdom prayer card

A sign of Fall since the change of seasons no longer existed for me in Southern California …

wisdom flower

 

A photo of herself during a phase when she would buy fur coats at estate sales because they were cheaper than anything off-the-rack…

wisdom fur

And an article from The Kearney Hub reminding me that it’s okay to be single…

wisdom bachelor

Beyond the quirky inserts and random writing accoutrement, the words themselves were always the most important highlight of my trip to the mailbox. Her cards and letters were frequent and they always contained unconditional support whether she was writing to me about the weather back home or reminding me to keep following my dreams…

wisdom weather

I’m thankful that even in my vagabond existence I have managed to save and archive the words that sustained me through so much of my adulthood. Looking back on her words now, I am reminded that the advice she offered up so many years ago is indeed timeless.

Here is a bit of her wisdom…

wisdom words5

In regards to pursuing my dream of becoming a working actor her words were always encouraging:

Please keep your dreams going – you are going to make it!”

Move forward young man on your dream of acting – just do it! You will NEVER be content until you give it your all. Then with God and luck you will be on your way! It’s a tough dream – Keep your back straight and tall and go for it!”

wisdom words8

And in true mom fashion she had no patience for the shenanigans of Hollywood…

Did you watch the SAG Awards? I have a real problem with Robert Downey Jr. getting awards – Sorry but I do. I think you should get them because you are just as talented and CLEAN!”

wisdom words4

When she wrote to me about my acting career, her words often reminded me to keep on track…

You know I worry about you- safety, if you are happy, etc. As far as reaching your goals and making good reasonable decisions, I have the utmost confidence in you! You have always known what you wanted, whatever it was and you went for it.”

And to never trust anyone on the west coast…

I guess it’s true that people in the Midwest appreciate hard work, dependability, honesty and someone they can trust more so than the people of Southern California.”

wisdom words

I always valued her thoughts on family…

I know as a family we have changed but who doesn’t? At least we still have the basics: Always there for each other – good or bad – and we can still laugh. Look at all the people that can’t laugh at themselves or anything really. It’s the basics – what more can we ask out of each other?

And her rare bits of wisdom on love always made me think the right one was out there…

I pray you find someone – someday – that will care about you as much as I do. That’s it, then all will be good.”

Just keep your heart open and look for someone that makes your soul feel good.”

wisdom card2

Her letters often contained advice on growing up…

I wish I had answers for you on being an adult but as you know I have done this growing up thing by the seat of my pants – one day at a time. If everything stayed the same how simple life would be! But no one can stop change.”

Avoiding regret (inevitable as it is)…

That’s why all I ever wanted for you is to be content and not always wondering because before you know it, you are limited on what you can do – only because of finances, age, etc. I look back and see so many choices I maybe shouldn’t have made but tried to make the best of my choices.”

And gratitude…

My Dad was the kind of guy that thought money was power. Sure you can have a good time but all in all sometimes it brings along with it all the bad also; greed, arrogance and a host of problems. That’s why I really try everyday to see the things I have to be grateful for. If I was to die tomorrow the greatest happiness I have is my relationship with you and Jeff and it doesn’t get much better than that. Nothing else could top it – not all the money in the world.”

wisdom words6

My mom’s words regarding her own parenting were a reminder that this brief time on earth is a constant learning curve no matter your age or place in this world…

I don’t feel like I have been a very good mom to my adult sons – maybe because I didn’t have my parents around in my 20’s. I don’t think I know how to be a parent to adult children. I do keep trying.”

I never raised you to be safe and secure (and excuse me but BORING). I have always gone by the seat of my pants; headstrong. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. Nothing is secure anymore – only your belief in yourself. That will never fail you.”

wisdom words2

And my favorite words from my mom were the ones that reminded me of her eccentric personality and zest for life. Words only a my mom can deliver properly…

I wanted to say that I will change my voice and tone on your voice mail – I really don’t mean to leave a guilt ridden message.”

I had a dream that I gave birth to an elephant (cute little guy) with the help of Charlene from ‘Designing Women’ – Wouldn’t a therapist have a field day with that dream!”

I’m thinking of becoming a monk – give me flip flops, a robe and a rosary and that’s it. Notice I didn’t say ‘nun’ as they work way too hard. So a monk is my goal – I’m tired of the everyday hassles.”

These are words to live by.

That’s the thing about a great mom and a good writer; her words never go out of style…

wisdom words7

 

 

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Scott Rager

Robert Scott Rager is a Nebraska native who returned home to start a boutique business called "County Seat Living". His personal goal for "County Seat" is to translate the lifestyle design he was creating in Los Angeles for the past twelve years and apply it to the sensibility of the Great Plains. Whether he's writing about decorating, homemade ice cream, floral creations, event planning or product design, he wants the personality and style of Nebraska to shine bright.

Lent For Kids: 40 Ways To Spend 40 Days

In: Featured, Kids
Cross with bird

Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the Lenten season leading to Easter. Our 3-year-old has been talking about the Easter bunny since January, when he finally understood that Christmas was over. While I’m happy he’s excited for the upcoming holiday, I really want to find some good, concrete ways to help him learn that this time of year is not only about bunnies and candy in eggs. So, I’ve decided to come up with 40 ways to spend the 40 days of Lent with kids. Some of these will work better with older children, while others are great for...

Keep Reading

Chocolate Pot de Crème

In: Featured, Kitchen

Chocolate and romance go hand in hand and with Valentine’s Day around the bend, why not have a beautifully simple and romantic dessert on the menu? With Valentine’s Day falling on a Saturday, it might be a little more difficult to get those reservations to go out to eat to celebrate. If you end up staying home, why not have an easy, romantic dessert to finish your meal? Made in a blender or food processor and refrigerated, this recipe is easy to make and the result can be a beautiful and elegant dessert that will put the perfect cap on...

Keep Reading

Creamy Chicken and Rice Soup

In: Featured, Kitchen

Written By:  Rachel Gnagy @ Inscribed Photography & Design (recipe originally from here) One of my favorite ‘girly’ meals to make is soup served in bread bowls. I love getting the Broccoli Cheese soup at Quizno’s (it’s healthy because it has broccoli, right?) and Panera’s Cream of Chicken & Wild Rice soup. YUM. So when I saw a recipe on Pinterest for creamy chicken and rice soup, I thought I would give it a try! You will need: 1 Tablespoon of olive oil 2-3 carrots, sliced 2 cloves of garlic, minced 5 cups of chicken stock 1 cup of cooked chicken,...

Keep Reading

Chicken Cordon Bleu for Two

In: Featured, Kitchen

Written By:  Rachel @ Inscribed Photography (Recipe originally from here) Valentine’s Day is coming up and with that in mind I wanted to bring you an easy, delicious meal for you and your special man. This recipe is by far the easiest Chicken Cordon Bleu recipe and it is super yummy too! Pair it with some steamed veggies on the side and something chocolatey for dessert and you’re all set for a romantic dinner for two. For the chicken, you will need: 2 chicken breasts, cut in half lengthwise 8 slices of deli ham 8 slices of Swiss cheese 1...

Keep Reading

Easy Weeknight Beef Stroganoff

In: Featured, Kitchen

We all have those heirloom recipes we grew up with, but when you get married you inherit a whole new set of recipes your spouse grew up with, too. This stroganoff recipe is one that my husband grew up eating and then cooked frequently for himself before I took over in the kitchen. (ha.) He made it for me once while we were dating, and I will admit – I was super skeptical. Generally, these sorts of humble dishes aren’t my cup of tea – the ones made with cream-of canned soups and noodles. However, I tried it and was...

Keep Reading

Hanging Onto Hope: The Dream That Saved My Baby Girl

In: Faith, Featured, Journal, Kids
Hanging Onto Hope: The Dream That Saved My Baby Girl www.herviewfromhome.com

Family and friends often assure pregnant women that their “maternal instincts” can be relied on to guide them into motherhood. This previously undiscovered gift will reveal itself the first time she holds her child. As a mother of four I believe in this instinct, but also recognize that experience and wisdom help. The birth of our fifth child, Kinsley, has introduced me to another source of guidance and strength that I never anticipated. Kinsley was born the day after Christmas. She was pink, beautiful and certified by the medical staff as being in perfect health. She was welcomed with unconditional...

Keep Reading

Bow Your Head and Vote, Yes the Outcome is Rigged

In: Featured
Bow Your Head and Vote, Yes the Outcome is Rigged www.herviewfromhome.com

“Keep in mind this is God’s plan! And who am I to dare question God’s plan!” I say it over and over as I watch this mess unfold before me. This mess, America is calling an election. I have never been impressed with the two-party system. It allows too much power to a select few and limits our freedoms. So, as I watch and listen and pray, as Trump and Clinton march to the White House, I only hope more Americans now see the disaster that is the two-party system. Two people that should be sitting in jail are now...

Keep Reading

This Kick-Ass Cancer Survivor Shares 20 Easy Ways To Make Your Life Healthier Today

In: Featured, Health, Healthy Living, Mental Health, Motherhood
This Kick-Ass Cancer Survivor Shares 20 Easy Ways To Make Your Life Healthier Today www.herviewfromhome.com

I recently went through quite an experience with my health. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in September of 2015. Following my diagnosis, I underwent a treatment regimen of chemotherapy, double mastectomy, and then, 28 rounds of radiation.  Before my diagnosis, I felt the healthiest I have probably, in my whole life. I was exercising regularly. Eating, conscious of my health. And after birthing three kids in 6 years, finding ways to focus on myself once again. And then — WHAM — cancer.  Excuuuuuuuuse me?!?! Cancer?!? I was, for all intents and purposes, a 33-year-old with great habits and a great...

Keep Reading

The Great Melt Down

In: Faith, Featured, Kids, Kitchen
The Great Melt Down www.herviewfromhome.com

When my brother Bobby and I were little kids, one of the great treats of summer was a journey to a neighboring town where my dad would buy each of us a hand-dipped ice cream cone. During the drive home, my mom would turn around from the front seat and point out drips that we back-seat-riders needed to lick up quick. I, the ever-eager pleaser, would anxiously eat my ice cream as quickly as possible, barely taking a breath between licks. Bobby, on the other hand, came up with the more reasonable response. He would grin at Mom and bite...

Keep Reading

The Best (and free) Drug Prevention Strategy

In: Featured, Health, Healthy Living, Kids, Relationships
The Best (and free) Drug Prevention Strategy www.herviewfromhome.com

A secret Facebook group has been uncovered by police that connects kids as young as 12 years-old to places where they can buy drugs. (see the link to the story at the end of this blog)  Shocking? Yes. Surprising? No. Kids find a way, don’t they? So what can we do? There are apps we can buy. There are rules we can make. There are punishments we can deliver.  Yet the best prevention of all is our relationship with our young people.  Time together, conversation, and honest sharing of our lives is the most effective way to influence our kids–even...

Keep Reading