So God Made a Mother Collection ➔

It’s always a special occasion when you come for a visit.

The scene is the same each time: little faces pressed against the living room window long after they’re supposed to be in bed, because the anticipation of seeing you is too much for their excited hearts to handle.

When you finally walk through the door, you’re no longer a savvy businessman or determined entrepreneur . . . you’re just Uncle Mike, and you’re here to play.

In case I’ve never come right out and said it—thank you, brother, for being the perfect uncle to my kids.

It’s a true blessing the way you dive right into the chaos that is our family’s life.

You don’t hesitate to throw on a firefighter hat and dash around the house taking orders from a 3-year-old chief. You’re a sucker for the “gain?” requests of a 2-year-old who wants to hear his favorite book for the fifth time in a row. You’re wrapped around the finger of a tiny baby girl who you stare down at, absolutely mesmerized.

I’ll find you picking up scattered toys, or helping our sons wash their hands before dinner, or gently soothing the baby’s cries while we’re getting food on the table. Without being asked, you offer your hand in all of the ways that make our lives just a little bit easier.

The love you have for my kids is written all over your face, and these little ones? They adore you right back—it’s plain to see.

It’s in the way your name comes up in their conversations almost daily, or how each time you send them a video, they watch it on repeat until the phone battery gets too low. It’s in the special squeals of laughter reserved just for playtime with you.

You’re the perfect uncle now, and I know as these littles of ours grow, the bond you share with them will grow, too.

A few years down the road, you’ll be in the backyard teaching them to throw a perfect spiral like you did back in your quarterbacking days. Your number will be on speed dial when they have a tough math problem they can’t work through.

Yours will be the inside joke I’m left shrugging my shoulders over as you and the kids burst into giggles.

It’ll be you they go to when they need advice from someone other than Mom or Dad. You’ll be the confidante who holds their secrets tightly and points them in the right direction when they’re unsure which way to go.

You’ll challenge them to find a passion and be relentless in pursuit of their dreams.

Uncles have this way of effortlessly stealing the hearts of their nieces and nephews. Almost without meaning to, they slide into the position of greatest role model and friend, which is just what you’ve done.

You’re a picture of kindness, hard work, and respect . . . and the very best example I could ever hope for my children to have. If they grow up to be anything like you—what a gift they’ll be to this world.

The uncle you are to my babies gives me a glimpse of just how lucky your own kids will be to call you “Daddy”someday. When that time comes, I hope as an aunt, I can live up to all of the ways you’ve loved our family during this season of life.

Big brother, you’ve been my very best friend for so many years, and what an honor it is to get to share you now with the three pint-sized humans I love the most.

Casey Huff

Casey is a middle school teacher turned stay-at-home-mama to three littles. It's her mission as a writer to shine light on the beauty and chaos of life through the lenses of motherhood, marriage, and mental health. To read more, go hang out with Casey at: Facebook: Bouncing Forward Instagram: @bouncing_forward

There’s Just Something about a 4-Year-Old

In: Child, Kids, Motherhood
4 year old girl smiling outside

There’s just something about a 4-year-old. The way their bubbly laughs and sweet little faces still have some traces of babyhood while they’re transforming into more and more of their own unique person right before your eyes.  The way they ask questions about everything under the sun, listen wide-eyed to your clumsy answers, and believe every single word you say. It’s so innocent (and scary) the way they believe absolutely anything you tell them—just because you’re “mommy.”  The way their still-a-little-chubby hand finds yours. And the way they still come running to you for a hug and kiss when they’re hurt. Or...

Keep Reading

Dear Preschool Teachers, I’m Going to Miss You So Much

In: Child, Motherhood
preschool teacher sitting with kids on her lap

Dear preschool teachers, There’s just no other way to say this— I’m going to miss you so much. You are the first adults outside of our family to spend your days with my children, and watching your relationships grow and develop this year has been the most bittersweet privilege. I’m going to miss the bright smiles that light up your faces every time my kids come bounding toward you on good days, and how tenderly you hold their little hands and guide them away from me on the tough ones. RELATED: Dear Preschool Graduate, I’m So Proud of You I’m...

Keep Reading

You’re Graduating From Kindergarten and the First Part of Your Life

In: Child, Motherhood
Mother, father, and little boy in graduation gown, color photo

To my little graduate:  I’m so proud of you. I used to think graduation ceremonies at this age were just a cute, end-of-the-year celebration. Now I see how much they really represent. I watched you in amazement this year. I saw all of your hard work. Not just academically but socially and emotionally as well. You learned to make friends without me there. You learned how to make your place in the world. You have learned to deal with disappointment, stand up for yourself, and the awkwardness of not being friends with everyone. You dealt with teasing because of your...

Keep Reading

He’s Outgrowing My Lap But He’ll Never Outgrow My Heart

In: Child, Kids, Motherhood

He’s five now—my baby, the third of my three children. I feel like I’ve taken the time to enjoy each stage, but no matter how much I try to savor, it still seems to go too fast. Like grains of sand slipping through my fingers—if I try to hold on too tightly, the years just seem to escape faster. We were sitting in church this morning. He had asked to sit in church with mom and dad instead of going to children’s Sunday school. And we let him. He’s gone from a squirmy toddler to a little boy who can...

Keep Reading

Dear Son, Don’t Ever Lose Your Helping Heart

In: Child, Kids
Young boy carrying two gallons of milk, color photo

When you carried two gallons of milk on our way out the door at Aldi, I smiled. You insisted to take them from my hands. You’re growing out of your shoes and shirts, and my prayer has always been that you’ll reach your full potential as a young boy growing into a young man.  You’ve always had a drive inside you that is seen big on the soccer field, and I pray you’ll always desire to work hard and serve strong wherever you are. RELATED: Let Us Raise Boys Who Have Respect Running Through Their Veins I pray you’ll work...

Keep Reading

9 is Changing Right Before My Eyes

In: Child, Tween
Girl sitting in car holding stuffed animal, color photo

“You are officially tall enough to ride without a booster seat,” our pediatrician tells my daughter after reviewing her measurements. It was her 9-year check-up, and she’d grown three inches in a year, landing at the 96th percentile for her age. She’d likely been tall enough for months, but I insisted we wait for her doctor’s confirmation, comforted by the imminent discussion on sitting safely sans booster. My girl gleefully melts into the car’s fabric and buckles her seatbelt, flashing a smile that showcases an assortment of adult and baby teeth. Reality hits me like an airbag in the face:...

Keep Reading

Goodbye To the Preschool Years

In: Child, Kids, Motherhood
Mother smiling with giggling preschool daughter, color photo

For me, personally, I feel as though this is the first gut-wrenching string I’m letting go of with my little girl.  Although when she started preschool I felt nervous and I missed her like mad, I knew I still had two weekdays with her as well as the weekend. It has been perfect—freedom and growth while at preschool—but still time for us.  School is on the horizon. The year of starting school has come quicker than I was prepared for. It has literally flashed before my eyes.  I have spent every day with my girls since they were born. Every...

Keep Reading

Don’t Ever Lose Your Sparkle, My Child

In: Child, Motherhood
Smiling little girl

I wish I could freeze this time, right where we are now. Right in this moment. Nothing is more bittersweet than seeing you grow.  People say time flies, and I didn’t really know how much it did fly until I had you. Until I held you in my arms for the very first time.  Since then, I have watched a little girl grow, right before my eyes. I watched her first steps. I heard her first words. I wiped her first tears. I held her hand the very first time. She grew. She keeps on growing. I see her smile...

Keep Reading

Dear Son, Will I Know You Tomorrow?

In: Child, Kids, Motherhood
Smiling boy

When you were a newborn, I knew you as well as it’s possible to know another human being. I was your everything; you were mine. I knew what each cry, each smile, each grasp intended. I anticipated your spit-up, your hunger, your fatigue. You grew into infancy, and we remained nearly as intimate: your laughs, your budding motor skills, and your newfound interest in toys were my complete delight. I was there with my camera to document the first time you sat up and played with toys on your own. I knew every single food you had eaten and its...

Keep Reading

Down Syndrome Does Not Define Her

In: Child, Motherhood
Infant in hospital bed, smiling, color photo

Riley’s story starts April 23, 2019. We had opted to get the 3-month scan and NIPT test with our third pregnancy just for the extra ultrasound. The tech brought in the maternal fetal medicine doctor, and he pointed out that there was an increased nuchal translucency measurement and that it was common with different trisomies. He suggested we have the materNit21 test to see which specific trisomy we were at high risk for. We opted for it. I got the call a few days later that the baby was at high risk for trisomy 21, otherwise known as Down syndrome....

Keep Reading

5 Secrets to the

BEST Summer Ever!

FREE EMAIL BONUS

Creating simple summer memories

with your kids that will  last a lifetime