The Overflow! where souls are filled and faith is spilled

An Invitation to Color Outside of the Lines (Hope for Try-Hard-Moms)

Her disgruntled wail rose over the clank and rattle of the cereal bowl I’d just dropped on the floor in my attempt to carry all of the breakfast dishes from table to sink in one swoop. Maggie had agreed to color a picture for Grandma while I mopped up milk splats and recovered the kitchen […]

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Why Every Day Could Be Your Birth-Day

The pitter patter of six-year-old feet foiled my plan. It was the first day in ages that my alarm hadn’t been set for the crack of dawn. Call it indulgent, but it seemed that a woman should be able to clock a little extra sleep on her birthday. But his urgent murmur sliced through my […]

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The One Thing That’s Better than a Trip to Disneyland!

 I am trying to get a handle on another day that’s snowballed.  The sun will sink soon and the breakfast dishes are still jeering at me from the kitchen counter. The phone rings, and the minute I pick it up, I regret the decision. A monotone voice wanes on the other end of the line, and […]

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On Red Sparkly Shoes and Beautiful Feet

She will only wear shoes if they sparkle.  No glitter? No girl.  Her all time favorites are the red ones.  When we speak of common sense things like rain boots and tennis shoes, she turns her head and says, “No, thanks. I’d rather have sparkly feet.”  This used to drive me crazy. Me, the mom […]

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Mercy in the Middle of the Mess

When I stepped through the girls’ bedroom door, it looked like I’d stumbled on a crime scene. Half-dressed Barbie dolls lay strewn across the floor, shreds of clumpy white cotton balls littered the carpet like misplaced clouds that had fallen out of the summer sky. And a pool of bright pink nail polish silently sabotaged the only […]

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The Inspire Series: Dream Girl

 I remember sitting on a baby-bear chair in the back of the first grade classroom.  Me.  And twenty other moms wiping sweat beads off of our foreheads on a sultry May day near the school year’s end.  The kids were lined up in a perfect row in front of the whiteboard at the classroom’s head. Each child […]

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How Motherhood Changes our Eyes

I barely recognize the woman staring back at me in the bathroom mirror at five A.M. Her eyes are red, rimmed by deep dark circles, and she looks like she hasn’t slept for years. This is the me without thick drops of concealer to hide my exhaustion, the me without foundation or powder or a […]

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Redemption Song (Why the World Needs your Story, even that Messy One!)

  Everyone needs a friend who can spy beauty in bedlam; a friend who can extract something marvelous out of the mess. Everyone needs a friend who can lasso hope in the hurt and discover purpose in the pain. My dear friend Ashley Larkin is that kind of friend. She’s a woman who inspires me […]

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When You Wish Your Name Were Bluebell (Or How to Grow Into the Girl of Your Dreams!)

We’re standing in line at the Dollar Tree, Maggie wiggling impatient in her favorite purple tutu, when the elderly woman behind us bends low to look my jittery one in the eye.  “You’re as beautiful as your dancing dress,” the sweet grandma says. Maggie smiles a thank-you, and the woman continues to chat with my youngest as I dig […]

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Five Minute Friday: When You’re Lonely for Your Daddy

She’s curled up in her bottom bunk, random pieces of her tangled blonde hair sticking out from under her purple poodle blanket. I stand in the doorway and try to decide whether to enter the room or not. She’s been a mess all day, this strong-willed fifth-born of mine. Crotchety and bossy. Melancholy and foul. My […]

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