A weekend away with my tribe


When Mr. Right and I sit down with couples who are planning to get married, we always tell them that finding good couple friends is one of the best things you can do for your marriage. I’m not kidding – research supports it, and my heart can attest to it. It takes awhile – when we got married, most of our friends were single, and so we had my friends and his friends and a few “our” friends, but very few couples that we could do life with.

And so we prayed. And prayed. And prayed. And man, has God blessed us richly. If you haven’t found “your” people yet, may I suggest looking at church? Church is messy and I’ll admit, there are some people there who are hard to love. But there are also some people – just like you – who are willing to do life with you, to know your junk and love you anyway, to be there when your “I just had a baby” hormones are out of control and you need someone to talk you down off the ledge, to pray for you, to see you without any makeup on and not care one bit, to laugh with you – and at you – so life seems less serious.

We found our tribe at church, in our Sunday School class. They are a bunch of messy people with J-U-N-K, and I absolutely adore them. ADORE.


This past weekend six couples from our class headed down to a lake house with just one rule: NO KIDS ALLOWED. Grownups only. It was awesome.

Here’s how our weekend went down:

Friday night:

  • Drive two hours out of town, listening to podcasts and enjoying great shoulder-to-shoulder time with the spouse.
  • Eat dinner at a restaurant at 8:00 (y’all, if we eat past 6:00 these days, we feel like we’re living on the edge). It was CRAZY.
  • Stay up super late playing games.
  • Laugh and laugh and laugh and (maybe sort of) binge on cookies.


  • Sleep late. Like, really late. Like, until almost 8:00. Feel like a million bucks.
  • Sit around and make breakfast.
  • Talk. Laugh. Eat.
  • Sit in rocking chairs in a screened-in porch and stare at the lake.
  • Watch your crazy husband jump into the crazy cold lake. Because he’s THE BEST.
  • Talk. Laugh. Eat.
  • Discuss doing something productive, like going into town to shop. Then decide to ditch the plans and take naps. OH GLORIOUS NAPS.
  • Talk. Laugh. Eat.
  • Sit around a campfire eating s’mores and laughing ’til our cheeks hurt.
  • Stay up late playing games, and (maybe sort of) binge on cake balls, chocolate cake, and leftover cookies.


  • Sleep late. Again. Like rockstars.
  • Sit around and make breakfast.
  • Talk. Laugh. Eat.
  • Go home. Get kiddos. Go back to reality.


To my tribe: thank you for refreshing my soul. For being good listeners and encouragers. For giving me so many “me, too” moments. For being awesome and laid back and FUNNY and really good cooks. And for making me feel loved.

Let’s do it again, okay? #standingroomonly

Can we be real for a minute?


As women, we need permission to be real. Because until we get permission, we tend to walk around displaying a best version of ourselves. And then as soon as one person in the group decides to tear down her walls and share her insecurities, her fears, her imperfections… the rest of the group follows.

So I want to be the first to stand up and be real. To be transparent, to tell you about my imperfections and my insecurities and weaknesses. There are so many. And every time I share them, women come up to me and whisper, “Me too!”

Me too are some of the most comforting words in the English language, aren’t they?

So ladies, will you be real with me? I’ll share a story with you, and then you can share a story with me (or your Facebook friends, or your neighbor, or your Sunday School class or a coworker).


Mr. Right and I are never EVER bringing our child to another restaurant. Ever. At least, not until she’s 20, and even then, only maybe. Twice in two weeks we took her to eat (both times for someone’s birthday, with a big group) and she refused to even sit in her high chair. Or on our laps. Or in a chair. And when I tried to make her, she rolled around on the floor and threw a giant tantrum.

It was so frustrating. And embarrassing. I felt like I was being judged, like people were analyzing my response, or simply assuming that we have a bad kid.

I feel like I’m good with discipline at home, where I can control her surroundings. Where I can put her in her usual time-out corner, or if necessary, give her a spanking without the watchful eyes of strangers. But in a busy restaurant it seems impossible. And I just want to avoid making a scene. And I’m tired of taking turns scarfing down my meal while Mr. Right walks around with her, only to trade and take my turn. It’s so stressful. I come home so tired. I just don’t want to anymore.

She also threw a GIANT tantrum at GAP last week. Granted, she was on the tail end of croup, but she was so bad and threw so many tantrums (SO MANY TANTRUMS) during our 20-minute visit that she even broke a display sign. I was so embarrassed. And of course there was a long line which gave her a LOT of time to throw her tantrum. And of course I had a coupon that expired that day, so I needed to stand in that long line.

So there it is… our real life. I’m not asking for discipline tips. In fact, please don’t leave them. We have regrouped and know that this is a marathon and not a sprint. That this is an age-appropriate issue  And most of the time sweet Wrenn is the most delightful child, who loves people and has a big heart and wants to please. And I realize that these past two weeks she has been sick, which means she has contributed to extra tantrums from feeling so crummy.


I know that this is a phase and someday it will end. And in the meantime there are so many wonderful moments to cherish. SO MANY.

But I’m still tired. Being a mom is hard.

Friends… if you’re feeling brave, share something REAL going on with you in the comments below so that the rest of us can have a ME TOO moment.


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