Our Keepsake Journal is Here! 🎉

Last night, I let my three-year-old son pick out a color of nail polish for me at Target. Bright electric blue. My five-year-old chose the prettiest of lilac purple. “Mommy, you paint on my toes?” the littlest asked. “Absolutely,” I said.

When I became a mom, I didn’t really think about the gender wars. Blue vs. pink. Boys vs. Girls. Trucks vs. Dolls. Then when my son wanted to paint his toes like me, I hesitated. Why? I don’t know. Because I was afraid others would judge me. I was afraid his dad would become upset. I was afraid my son would be laughed at. 

My little boy didn’t care. He was excited. He had a fun color on his feet, too. He wanted to be like me. He would touch my painted toes all the time because it was smooth, shiny, and colorful. Now he had it, too. He loved it. Still does. He also likes to PAINT– pumpkins, the wall, his arms and legs, on paper. His toes are no different. Yet, at five, he is starting to believe that “painting” toes is for girls. I hear him say things like, “Mom, that is a girls show.” “Only girls wear pink.” 

My three-year-old was so proud of his blue toes last night. This morning, he wanted to take it off or wear his shoes because he didn’t want anyone to see. I have sent them both to their dad’s house and they come home with the polish gone. Next month, my son goes off to Kindergarten. I am dreading it some because I know he will lose a little more innocence every day. 

I am raising modern day men. I am teaching them that their emotions are important. I am showing them how to talk about feelings. I am sharing with them how to communicate in a healthy way. I am leading by example that the strongest, most courageous characteristic is being vulnerable with oneself and others. I am helping them express their larger than life personalities. I am raising them to be open and honest about who they are. 

In our house, we watch Shimmer and Shine, Sophia the First, Nella the Knight, Paw Patrol, PJ Masks, and PacMan. Superhero costumes are worn, wrestling matches are constant, and hugs and kisses are abundant. I love you’s are heard hourly. We admit when we are wrong, we apologize, we laugh, we embrace each other. I encourage them in their interests. Let’s play house, dress up, sword fight, bake cookies, wash the car, play baseball, or watch a Tinkerbell movie. My oldest has asked about dance classes. He loves music and our spontaneous dance parties when his favorite song comes on. So why wouldn’t he want to do dance classes too? I don’t tell my boys they can’t be friends with girls so why would I tell them they can’t do activities that girls (or boys) do? 

My sons are no less boys because they like more feminine things. Trust me. They are all boy. I have seen that when they are exposed to the more “girly” activities or shows, they are shown more. More ways to be compassionate. More ways to problem solve. More ways to accept others who are different. More ideas and thoughts. More adventures. More kindness and laughter. When my boys see or do something deemed “for girls,” they are being shown that females can do anything boys can do and vise versa. 

When I paint my two sons’ toe nails, I am teaching them more than they know. I am showing them we live in a world of endless possibilities. I am letting them embrace who they are. I have so many wants, hopes, and dreams for my boys. And the biggest one is that when they are men, they have the ability to truly love themselves. They are able to treat their spouse with love and respect. They can be strong, vulnerable, courageous, and sensitive. I want them not to run away from their problems or feelings. I hope they stand up for what is good and true. I want them to see people and their different qualities and quirks as gifts from God. I want them to respect women and their fellow man. 

So I paint their toe nails. Red, blue, yellow, green, pink, purple. Whatever color they want. And I don’t care what you think about it being too “girly.” My boys are only little once. Soon enough they will lose the magic of childhood and shoulder the responsibility of adulthood. Therefore, I will paint their toes. 

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

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

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Katie Weber

Me. My two little men. My second change. Motherhood. Depression. Divorce. Love. God. laugher. Friendship. My lovely. It's all right here. Follow along for more at Lovely in the Dark. 

Dear Graduate, I Love You Forever

In: Kids, Living, Motherhood
Kindergarten grad

I never imagined these days of preparing for graduation, senior prom, senior photos, and you actually moving out would come. A few weeks into your life, friends gifted you a 6-month sleeper. I remember the cuddly white footie pajamas well. But I swore you’d never get big enough to wear it. How could this 8-pound human grow to fit into 6-month clothes? Impossible. And then somehow they did fit, and then they didn’t anymore. Just like that. Everyone says the days are long but the years are short. Everyone, that is, who has had a lot of years. When I...

Keep Reading

Love Beyond Words

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother hugging daughter

My daughter Lexi lost her words and some of her motor functioning when she was two years old. She was three when the silent intruder of Rett Syndrome made itself known through seizures. But here’s the heart of our story: even without words, Lexi and I have created our own language—a symphony of unspoken love. She may not call me “Mom” in the traditional sense, but her eyes, her laughter, and the unique sounds she makes speak volumes to my heart. Each day with Lexi is a dance—one where the steps aren’t always clear, and the rhythm can change in...

Keep Reading

Always Choose Adventure

In: Kids, Living, Motherhood
Two children looking at aquarium exhibit, color photo

Here’s the thing about traveling with little kids. Is it hard? Sometimes. Sometimes it looks like a whole carry-on dedicated solely to snacks, activities, and emergency treats. Sometimes it looks like buying a drink for the passenger next to you as a way of saying sorry and thank you all at the same time for the airplane kid chaos they endured. Sometimes it looks like altering your picture-perfect itinerary that you meticulously planned on account of missed naps finally catching up. Sometimes it looks like washing a car seat off in a hotel shower because your toddler got carsick, then...

Keep Reading

Daddy, Am I Beautiful?

In: Faith, Kids, Motherhood
Daddy holding preschool-aged daughter, color photo

“Daddy, do I look beautiful?” I heard my daughter ask my husband from the other room. I barely heard what she said as I was in the kitchen washing the dishes, but her words struck a chord in my heart. My sweet girl, all dressed to go out, asked for her Daddy’s assurance that she was beautiful, that she was admired and special. It hit me in that moment: this pure and built-in desire we all have to be loved, admired, and wanted. Just as my sweet girl wanted her Daddy’s approval and assurance of love, I so often cry...

Keep Reading

Sensitive Sons Are Strong Too

In: Kids, Motherhood
Boy pets kitten held by another older boy

My son has always been timid. When he was a baby, he cried when he lost his pacifier in his crib. If I laughed too loudly, he might burst into tears. Once, he was asleep in his bassinet as my husband and I turned on a movie. The MGM lion roared, and he woke in a panic that seemed to take forever to calm. Now, at five years old, my son wrestles, runs, fights, and screams at the television. He pretends to fight bad guys and save me and his twin sister. He thinks he is the king of the...

Keep Reading

Wrestle Like a Girl

In: Kids, Motherhood
Girls wrestling team huddling on the floor

I’m a wrestling mom, but I’m a new breed. I’m the kind with my little girl on the mat. Sure, I support our son out there, and I scream like a wild banshee with the rest of the crazy parents, and I’m in awe of the athletes these boys are. But then steps out our daughter. And it’s different. She decided to join her big bro at practice years ago when word was just starting to spread about the possible emergence of girls’ wrestling. She was only in kindergarten, but I think my husband might have already been thinking college....

Keep Reading

I’ll Hold on To Moments of Childhood with My Preteen as Long as I Can

In: Kids, Motherhood, Tween
Smiling preteen and mother

This Christmas season, my husband took our laser light projector and aimed it at the Australian bottle tree in the front yard. It shone like a thousand red and green fairies dancing through the branches. The first time I saw it, I gasped with glee. Christmas came and went. Much to our 6-year-old’s disappointment, we took down the decorations and boxed them in the attic until next year. I noticed that my husband forgot to put away the light projector though. One Friday night, recovering from a stomach bug, we decided to watch Wonka and fold laundry. We bought into the...

Keep Reading

“Tell Me Another Story, Daddy?”

In: Kids
Man reading to young son

“Tell me another story, Daddy?” I had heard these words since we had finished supper. My 5-year-old son loves hearing stories. He loves to put himself in these stories. He doesn’t just watch Paw Patrol, he’s in Paw Patrol. He is a Kratt brother. And he loves hearing stories about his favorite adventurers with him saving the day alongside his animated heroes. While I absolutely love telling stories to my son, there are many days when I don’t feel like it. When I want to say, “No, Daddy is tired. Why don’t you go play with your toys while daddy...

Keep Reading

Getting Glasses Can be an Adjustment

In: Kids, Motherhood, Teen, Tween
Pre-teen wearing glasses

On their last break from school, my daughter and son happily enjoyed a nice week of catching up with friends and having a relaxed schedule. I was careful to avoid overloading our schedule so we had a nice balance of days out and days being at home. As can often happen on a school break, I used one day as our “appointments day.” We had our routine dental checks and eye exams booked. The morning went smoothly with the dentist, and then it was time to head home for lunch. Next, we popped back out to do the children’s eye...

Keep Reading

To the Fifth Grade Parents: Thank You

In: Child, Kids, Motherhood
Arcade style photo machine, color photo

To the fifth-grade parents in my community: How are we here already? The end of fifth grade. The end of elementary school. It feels like yesterday we saw each other at kindergarten drop off, some of us through the tears of sending our first baby to school, some seasoned pros, and a small group of us with a touch of extra worry in our mama hearts—the special ed mamas. Among the many things I worried about sending my kindergarten son to school was how your children would treat him. Would they laugh at him like they did at his Montessori...

Keep Reading