Online Inspiration and Encouragement

I like to use FaceBook to my advantage. One of the ways I do that is to scan through Pages or Profiles related to “moms” or “parenting.” I’ve found a lot of Neh! and also some great stuff for quick encouragement on this parenting journey.

Today I recommend a few. I hope you’ll find one that gives you the Mom-boost you need.



emilylogoRenewed Hope Parenting by Emily Scott at

Emily blogs about every two weeks about a variety of issues facing parents. Blog titles include “Never Allow Someone To Make You Feel Like a Bad Parent,” “The Advantage of Affection,” “Five Day Love Your Child Challenge” and much more.  She also reviews parenting books. Emily’s blog looks to me like a good place to get a quick dose of encouragement.

DISCLAIMER: The website is connected to their business/ministry of counseling families.


Miracles In the Mess  at

This is a Face Book page with plenty of short posts designed to encourage you to parent lovingly and positively. Might be just the little spark you need after the fifth dirty diaper of the day!


IMG_7463Daring to Delight from the Trenches of Motherhood by Hannah Savage at

Hannah’s blog is dedicated to helping readers have a “presence-centered home.” She explains it this way:

I believe that God’s promise to never leave us makes all the difference in the world to us and our families. When we grow to understand who God is, what the Holy Spirit brings to our lives, fear and striving lose their hold. Our life can become an affirmation that we are hosting Christ, even in the midst of life’s greatest messes. His presence in our lives gives us courage to lean in to what He’s doing in us. His grace empowers us to be present and proactive in our homes.


Natural Christian Mamas by three moms—Jackie, Bethany and Shelby at

This blog is a boon for parents trying to create a “Nature-Centered Family” that utilizes all-natural products, foods and methods. You’ll find research results, comparisons, new products and encouragement both from God’s Word and other Natural Christian Moms to keep on keeping on.




The Most Magnificent Thing

Another Picture Book Review by Jean Matthew Hall

The Most Magnificent Thing was written and illustrated by Ashley Spires. It was published in 2014 by Kids Can Press.

An unnamed little girl has a wonderful idea to build the most magnificent thing. She’s not sure exactly what it will be, but she knows she’ll know it when she sees it completed.

She and her best friend [dog] go through many failed attempts. Here this book takes a surprising and delightful turn. The girl eventually becomes totally frustrated and quits on her project.

But her friend convinces her to go on a pleasant afternoon as a distraction. They do, and they ahave lots of fun.

When she returns to her work the little girl has a whole new perspective. She tears everything apart and starts all over again.

This is a delightful tale of imagination, persistence and determination, and of the importance of encouragement from a friend.


Oh, and there might be just a hint of the value of taking a break when you hit a wall! Some good advice for kids and grownups—including writers and artists.

The Most Magnificent Thing is also available for Kindle.


A Dozen Mommy Myth Busters


  • You CAN handle potty-training, drivers training, and training bras all at the same time.
  • Despite their refusal to eat anything green, your children will NOT be malnourished.
  • Runny noses are disgusting. But they are not fatal.
  • Playing outside in the cold without a jacket occasionally does not cause pneumonia.
  • A few loose germs around your house will not give your kids the Plague.
  • Lots of babies do not crawl before they walk. Scooting, sliding and rolling get them where they want to go just fine.
  • Rough-housing with Dad is good for your kids. It makes them emotionally stronger, more independent and more secure.
  • family-2972198_1920Rocking chairs are seriously under-used. Rocking babies promotes their emotional welfare and develops the decision-making portion of their brains.
  • A small daily dose of dirt is good for your child’s immune system.
  • Holding babies and playing with children IS more important than dusting and washing windows. Who cares if no one thinks you are Martha Stewart?
  • Breastfeeding is wonderful. But formula-fed babies can be just as healthy, just as happy, just as loved and secure as breast babies.
  • Every baby will eventually have diaper rash and little bumps on their adorable faces. It does not mean that you are a bad mom


LOVE, absolutely, hands-down, is the most important part of mothering.

Anything Is Possible – Picture Book

Another Picture Book Review by Jean Matthew Hall

Anything Is Possible was written in Italian by Giulia Belloni and illustrated by Marco Trevisan. It was translated into English by William Anselmi and published in English in 2011 by Owl Kids.

A sheep and a wolf become unlikely partners in a venture to build a flying machine and soar above the earth. The sheep is the dreamer with the idea. The wolf is the mechanic with the know how to bring the dream to fruition.

Anything Is Possible tells the story of their persistence and determination through miserably failed attempts. The sheep keeps the dream alive and the wolf has enough vision to see that the project is worth all of the effort.

At last they succeed and decide that nothing is impossible to those willing to keep at it.


The illustrations are cute and eye-catching. The kids in your life will enjoy this read.

It might also provide an opportunity to discuss how two such unlikely friends can work together so well.

He Cushions Our Fall

via He Cushions Our Fall

Practical Online Help

I’m back to recommend a few online places that can help you with the day-to-day stuff!


Her View From Home by  numerous moms

Her View From Home is a lifestyle magazine that connects your view to the rest of the world. We strive to give you a platform to share your story and embrace everyday living through daily articles about family, kids, fashion and health, recipes and faith.  Our website is made up of views from women across the country who share one common theme; a passion for their view from home.


Calamus Mom by Amy Juett

Amy and friends posts are sometimes inspirational and sometimes very practical. She blogs about a large array of topics related to Home, Kids, Grief, Health Issues, Lifestyles, and Craziness in the Kitchen.

I think you’ll find some useful tips, inspiration and laughter here.


Passionate Homemaking by Lindsay at

also on FaceBook at

Talk about practical information! This site is LOADED with tips and hacks for every aspect of keeping your home. Time and energy savers galore, and recipes!


iphone_cozi_todayFREE Cozi Family App available at

Cozi is a family calendar/organizer for your screens. And it’s free.

Cozi is free, easy-to-use, and a 3-time Mom’s Choice Award Winner.

With Cozi you can:

  • Keep events and activities all in one place
  • Keep and share the grocery list in real time
  • Store recipes, plan meals, and shop for ingredients
  • Use from any mobile device or computer











Violet the Pilot – Picture Boook

Another Picture Book Review by Jean Matthew Hall

Violet tbe Pilot was written and illustrated by Steve Breen. Dial Books for Young Readers published it in 2008.

Violet is different from the other kids at school. She doesn’t have friends. She doesn’t spend time on the playground. Violet is fascinated with the junk in her father’s junkyard, and spends her time dreaming, planning and scrapping to build her own flying machine.

Violet’s persistence, determination and imagination lead to her success, of course.

And her success at flying comes with an unexpected bonus—

You’ll have to read Violet the Pilot for yourself to find out what that is.




First and second graders will love this book, its illustrations and determined little main character.

Picture Book Review How to Grow a Dinosaur

Another Picture Book Review by Jean Matthew Hall

How to Grow a Dinosaur was written by Jill Esbaum and illustrated by Mike Boldt. It was published in 2018 by Dial Books for Young Readers.

There are tons of picture books on the library shelves about children getting new baby brothers or sisters. But Esbaum’s How to Grow a Dinosaur is one of the cutest I’ve seen.

Big brother goes through the typical “things babies do” (pee-yu!) and things babies can’t do. But this book has a little twist. Big brother soon realizes that the new baby copies him and wants to be just like him.

How to Grow a Dinosaur is a cute little reminder that we are all leaders, and that someone is always wanting to be just like us–point taken.

Mike Boldt’s hilarious illustrations make the book a delight for the eyes.


You can learn more about both Jill Esbaum and Mike Boldt at  Picture Book Builders.

Version 4

Or, visit Esbaum’s website to learn more about her, her books, and workshops she leads.



See more of Mike Boldt’s work at his website.3-1-300x300



You Are a MOM!

YES! You CAN do this parenting thing because: woman-pointing-3188559_1920

  • You are beautiful. Those little people in your home think YOU are the most beautiful woman in the world.
  • You are smart. Smarter than you think you are.
  • You are tough. When things are tough you dig in, or dig your way out.
  • You are called. If there are children in your home God has called YOU to the extraordinary job of parenting them. He enables those whom He has called.
  • You are strong in the Lord. He will provide all the strength you need when you need it.
  • You are forgiven. There is nothing the Lord Jesus won’t, or can’t forgive.
  • You are an overcomer. God will lift you on His wings and carry you over these difficulties.
  • You are talented. You can cook dinner, text, change a diaper, and help with homework all at the same time.
  • You are loving. So, you can learn to be tender and gentle and forgiving, too.
  • You are loved unconditionally by your children, and by your God.
  • You are tired. And sometimes the godliest thing you can do is to take a good nap.
  • You are unique. God made you a special, one-of-a-kind mom. Don’t try to imitate anyone else—be the best YOU that you can be.


Picture Book Review (Nonfiction) The Inventor’s Secret

A Nonfiction Picture Book Review by Jean Matthew Hall

The Inventor’s Secret: What Thomas Edison Told Henry Ford is an interesting and engaging nonfiction picture book written by Suzanne Slade, and illustrated (smashingly!) by Jennifer Black Reinhardt. It was published by Charlesbridge in 2015. It contains 48 pages.

BTW—Reinhardt is fast becoming one of my favorite illustrators.

Slade obviously put many hours (How about months, maybe years?) into research. I love that she chose to emphasize the relationship between two famous inventors, Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. With this approach, we don’t get a full “biography” of either inventor. Instead, we get the meat of their genius and their character. What made them succeed when so many other people failed?

I like the back and forth of the book, too. A page or two about Thomas, then a page or two about Henry.

I also like that she followed their persistence and curiosity through childhood, into adulthood, and on to success.

I find the back matter really interesting. As a former teacher, this is just the kind of information I wanted to inspire my students. Back Matter also includes sources, websites about the two inventors, and a handy comparative timeline.

I guess you’ve figured out that I really like The Inventor’s Secret: What Thomas Edison Told Henry Ford. I highly recommend it for teachers and media experts in upper elementary and middle school. Yes, that’s right. I recommend this book for middle school. It’s inspiring and packed with great info.



Go to Picture Book Builders to learn more about both Suzanne Slade and Jennifer Black Reinhardt. They both have websites, too. Click here. Slade and Reinhardt.




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