How to Say ‘No’ Like a Boss


I pace back and forth in the middle of Phelan Garden Center holding a flat of yellow and red petunias. Should I buy them to plant around my front yard trees or just forego it this year? And furthermore, why in the Sam Hill is the decision to buy flowers such a hard one? Heaven forbid you ask me about a really difficult choice like whether we should have pizza or spaghetti for dinner.  I might just curl up and cry.

Actually, my flower issue is really about saying yes to everything I usually say yes to even though my schedule is more full than it’s ever been. I simply can’t keep saying yes without sacrificing things that have no business being sacrificed.

I’m learning how a well-placed no can be the best kind of fresh-air.

Sometimes saying no is a no brainer, easy and quick. But if my no has the potential to disappoint someone? Well, this people-pleaser struggles with that.

But here’s the thing: giving too many yes’s to others still disappoints someone: me. I am discovering the value in being true to God’s best for me and how that sometimes includes a well-placed no (or several). Slowly, I am learning how no one is the boss of my schedule but me, and how freeing it is to refrain from the automatic yes so I can be the boss of what’s in my schedule, too.

Will you join me here and share what you’ve learned about saying ‘no’ with confidence and not guilt? 

The wonderful thing about a well-placed no is that it opens the door to allow a better-for-you yes to walk through. Here are some of my favorite yes’s of this summer so far:
















Finally, I owe y’all a Texas-sized *thank you* for all the support – either through making a donation, dishing out some social media love, or both - toward our care packages for military spouses!

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Y’all, our care packages fundraiser is FULLY funded!

If you read some of the excerpts from the spouse nominations, you know your well-placed yes to this project is beyond appreciated. I am chomping at the bit to get these 40 care packages boxed up and shipped to deserving military spouses all over the world.

I am also chomping at the bit to begin writing here regularly again. Soon, soon, soon!

In the meantime, know I love and cherish our fresh-air family here. You are treasured, m’loves. xo

We Interrupt This Blog Break for a Super Important Reason


I sit on my inlaws’ back patio under stretched maple branches when I watch a video of friends and former neighbors of ours.  11 year old Austin had the opportunity to throw the ceremonial first pitch at a Kansas City Royals baseball game. The video begins with Austin throwing the ball right to the catcher’s mitt. And then comes the best part: the catcher removes his mask and Austin’s eyes widen as his jaw drops. Standing behind home plate in an unfamiliar baseball uniform is a very familiar man: Austin’s dad, Rob, home from a year long deployment in the Middle East.

I watch the video a couple times and then wonder where Austin’s mom, Becky, is standing. Neither she nor Austin’s older sister is visible in the video, although I’m sure they’re close by. I want to pepper Becky with questions: When did you find out Rob would be the catcher? How did you keep such a surprise a secret from Austin? Did you get to watch from the baseball field? I’m dying to know how it all went down from her point of view.

But then I think how this paints a real reflection of life for the military spouse. Oh, not the part about a family moment seen everywhere from HuffPost to People. But rather how military spouses are usually behind-the-scenes, content to be “off camera.” As is the case with much in life, hidden off-camera doesn’t translate to insignificant. Most married military members will tell you they couldn’t do what they do without the support of their hardworking, brave spouses at home.


As we celebrate America’s patriotic holidays of all holidays this week, I wonder if you might want to join me in doing one small thing that shows big support to those who give their own support so freely?

After receiving nomination after nomination for military spouses most deserving of a special surprise, I launched a fundraiser in hopes of sending 40 care packages to 40 military spouses. We are 2/3 of the way funded and well on our way to wrapping it up, just $900-ish short from our goal. Several of you have already partnered with me, and for that I give you the biggest, squeeziest hug and say thank you

If you would still like to contribute to our Care Packages for Military Spouses, now is your opportunity to do so. The fundraiser ends in 4 short days – on July 4th. If only a tiny percentage of readers here contributed $5 each, we would have this thing wrapped up lickety-split and be on our way to blessing 40 military spouses. Each package costs under $90 each and holds items from companies such as DaySpring, Lisa Leonard Designs, Cheryl’s cookies, Mary Kay, and more.

But the potential each package holds to encourage these heroes at home?


Because we all know that when we build up our military spouses, they are better able to build up their service member husbands and wives.


To make your own contribution, click here

This summer, I continue to enjoy my bloggy break with at-home kids, back-porch sunshine, and pie from the oven. And somehow between road trips and pool trips I’ve managed to squeak out more words for the book (thankyouLord). I need to squeak out a whole lot more, so the break will continue for a bit longer. I’ll also be using this time to wrap up and send our care packages!

Just the same, I miss hanging with y’all. If you have a moment, can you let me know what’s going on with you and yours right now? But if you’re too busy summer-ing to do so, you bet I understand. And I raise my snow cone in your honor to toast you with a good job, friend.

May these long, light-filled days of summer brim with all your favorite things, darlings. I love you!

And in case you didn’t see the video of Rob and Austin Sides, check it out below. (With kleenex, of course.) Subscribers, click here to see the video.

**First and third photos from Michelle Roselius.

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