All posts by Audra

Love Silent and Strong

The two words,  Silent and Strong, are not normally paired with one another. Take a look at what can happen when they are…

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There are many ways to love silent and strong.  A parent standing at arm’s length watching a child spread their wings in youth, loves in this way. Silence gives the child room to grow and problem-solve; but silent prayers lay strong foundations for paths explored.

Loving silent and strong is also when a parent stands at their child’s bedside as they sleep, and their heart spills over with a love that cannot be described with words, and you thank the Lord in prayer for the gift of this magnitude. The strong prayers for their future and all that you both dream of are laid in those silent moments.

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In many ways, all parents love silent and strong throughout their children’s lives; there are always prayers for safety, health, happiness…



In my lifetime, I have watched a few remarkable people who love silent and strong for others outside their family.  They are mostly quiet by nature; very unassuming and not your attention-seekers. They are intentional in all that they do, and they do not shy away from solitude.

These are some powerful prayer warriors that love from a distance.

Unfailing and constant in their love.

They are watchful and ever anticipating.

They agonize, and other times rejoice for us; all in solitude and silence.

Mighty battles are fought for others on their knees; they are strong, and their prayers strengthen us.

I am in awe of such devotion and love for others. To have someone love silent and strong for you and me, is a true treasure worth eternal value. And to love silent and strong for another is a journey of love that I believe the Lord intended for every one of us.

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As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. The love of God provides a safe harbor for those whose lives are anchored in Him. Joshua 24:15

Love Hopeful

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My heart was hopeful all weekend for a phone call from someone I had reached out to after a communication breakdown. My hope diminished as the silence grew; they never did return the call. As sad as I am about any damage done, I will still love hopeful for this friend. I don’t discard the shattered hope. I pick it up and glue it back together.

I was hopeful once to have a daughter one day, but the Lord had designs for 4 sons in my life. As hope sunk on that dream, I loved hopeful and watched God’s perfect plan unfold. I now have 4 priceless sons, plus a few treasured college girls that have stepped into my life and become like daughters to my husband and me.

Every day I find myself hoping for one thing or another. They don’t all work out, but the human heart still continues to love hopeful. And when the hope becomes a reality–oh!–what rejoicing!

When my hope is weakening, I just love this verse about receiving a fresh batch of it each day with the Lord’s mercy:

“Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin again fresh each morning. I say to myself, ” The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in Him!” Lamentations 3:21-24

The audacity of Hope.

Hope is resilient; gently bold and daring. A game changer through life.

 Love knows no limit to its endurance, no failing of its hope.

Love Notes


shabby chair

February is the Month of Love. And with Valentine’s Day right in the middle, romantic notions abound. Love is ” in the air” and commercialism has capitalized on this holiday so strongly that it’s hard for V-Day to live up to the high expectations we’ve placed on it. Many are doomed to fail before they even try! Society does enough to deflate the self-esteem and worth…

Let me share a different slant on this Monumental Month of the Heart: God is Love.

What if we miss it each year completely? I’m a bit older than 29,  (ha), and this is just now a new thought to me!! So I took the word LOVE, and wrote it out on several sticky notes. Each day I write an adjective/verb underneath the word Love, and then let the Lord begin to reveal His heart on these words in relation to His Love. I think you should try it with us. Let’s turn February into a way to purpose LOVE  in to all and everyone each day. I want to make every day of this month a tribute to God’s Love; I want to see new ways to show Love; I want to hear, taste, see, and be Love, the way we were created to be.

Next week, we will share a few of our LOVE NOTES  that we have been collecting. Our hope is that you will discover many more because our God is Love.


love notes

Imitate God, therefore in everything you do, because you are His dear children. Live a life filled with Love, following Christ’s example.  Ephesians 5:1-2

What Goes Up, Must Come Down!

One of the many joys we have both learned as Boy Moms, is to embrace the sheer pleasure of destruction in our sons’ worlds. I truly believe that a few of our kids only humor us with our Christmas tradition of Gingerbread-making because they know the day will come at the end of the Holiday Break when we will bring them all together again for: Demolition Day!

demo day

Yes, we are “those moms” that give our sons Nerf guns and hammers and on the count of 3… let them wreak havoc on our cookie creation. The whole thing is usually reduced to rubble in seconds while the two of us try to capture the fleeting moment for a scrapbook, dodging bits of gingerbread and candy flying past us!

This is how we look at it: children are constantly told to “be still, be quiet, don’t touch this or that, stop running…” It must be so difficult to contain all that frenetic energy bundled up in these growing bodies, AND obey all the adults that want them to stop acting rambunctious! Of course we can’t have children completely run amok (!!) but there should be some balance in their behavior training.

There are times we can create appropriate moments to run, yell, jump, wrestle, and touch everything in sight. So that’s what this day is about for our Gingerbread Warriors. They anticipate this day greatly, and we all dive in to the fun of it. So when we say “be still,” they can, because they trust us to tell them when it is time to “run with abandon!”play!

Enjoy the “play”; these moments are treasures tucked into your children’s hearts. They will become more important to you than all those moments they were quiet.

muddy warriors

“Open my heart, Lord, to the gifts of this day!”

Hot Cocoa Station

hot cocoa timeAs soon as Thanksgiving is tucked away and Holiday decorations are bursting out of our attics ready for display, we set up a Hot Cocoa Station in our homes that our families always enjoys year after year. The beauty of this little spot is that we tend to leave it up past Christmas and New Year’s and let it linger until the winter weather begins to warm up. As a mom, it frees me up from all the prep of making cups and cups of chocolate. And as a kid, it enables them to make something without assistance. (I will step in with younger ones and help with hot water prep). We sometimes throw in some hot apple cider and tea options too. It is fun to have friends and family come over and feel able to” help themselves” to a warm beverage!

cocoa station

Another trick we find MOST handy in both of our kitchens is a Drink Station. Our families have been using this tool for several years now. When you have multiple kids in your home, the last thing you want during “germ” seasons is for them to drink after one another!! And inevitably, as much as I used to try to catch them before their lips hit a cup that was not theirs…the germs had already been shared. YUCK!

Sooooooo, if you feel me on this one, then you might want to set up one of these in your kitchen:drink stationA long tray works perfectly for defining the space. We have been using this drink station in both of our homes for several years now. It has been great for cutting down all those loads of dishes. I was constantly collecting cups from all over the place and decided enough was enough! By defining the spot in your kitchen, all cups are corralled, and I wash them every day or so now because I know whose they are. This is a simple but very effective way to manage your family’s beverages.

Lately, my boys have been using these mason jars that have a number on them. I found them on a clearance rack and assigned each boy a number (birth order is easy to remember), and they look at it as some form of “secret code”! Win! Win! For All!! kids drinks

You can be as creative/practical as you want on your drink station. You match it to the style of your kitchen and make it personal for your family.  Hope this helps the traffic of cups in your kitchen!

“My cup overflows.” Psalm 23:5



People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

A neighbor that our family holds dear in our hearts just said goodbye to a mother of 90 years. Such a good, long life, but still hard to lose at any age, always.

As he reflected on his mother, this is what I heard:handpicked

she loved her children dearly

she worked hard in life

she poured into her family

she stood up for us, and stood by us in every circumstance

she knew how to make each person feel important; special

I never met this woman, but I listened to this son’s heartfelt sentiments and I began to think…

Feelings trump Actions a lot of the time. The memory bank cements the details with the years added; but the feelings infused to the spirit stay long and hard in our minds. Our heartstrings are attached to those feelings.

This is good news to the daily grind of life!! But a strong, powerful and important lesson to pay attention to…

whatever the event, circumstance or situation, be it good, beautiful or ugly; you can CHOOSE to end each well. There is an enemy that would really like to keep this a secret, but oh what a great Godly weapon against such one!!!


Listen: God can restore anything when we choose to give to to Him. Every time that we show LOVE, KINDNESS, GENTLENESS, SELF-CONTROL... we are ending it well. The people around you- Family, Friends, Strangers, God-orchestrated People will remember how they felt in your presence long after any event or meeting.

I know that I strive to point to the Lord with my life. I want to look like a big, beautiful, messed-up, imperfect, redeemed, restored person that ended things well because the Lord showed me how. And then that irritating enemy can’t replay any tapes to confuse me later, because God stops him, and reminds me how we ended even the hardest things in life well; together.


Embrace every moment you’re given. Time flies and moments are fleeting, but as you give the very best of you,  then our Lord can use that to be part of your legacy.

shamrockHere are parts of our Legacy:

This shamrock plant is in my house and my sister-in-law’s because it reminds us of our mother-in-law who loved this plant. We both have quilts that go back to great-grandparents in our lives that we wrap our children in. We share stories about loved ones that have gone on before us, and we cook with the recipes of cherished women in our past. All of these simple things implant feelings on our hearts; they are an evolving legacy…

Each transition that we take hold of will add another layer of texture to our lives and our children’s memories of home.

“But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him, and His righteousness to children’s children.” Psalm 103:17