Sep 042014

One evening, an elderly Cherokee brave told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, “My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all. One is evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego. The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: ‘Which wolf wins?’

The old Cherokee replied simply, “The one you feed.”

LISTEN. The scarier and more shocking the news gets- the better their ratings.  If we look to the news for the truth of our world we are feeding only one wolf. Because the news is not really a reflection of WHAT HAPPENED TODAY –  it is a reflection of the CRAZIEST, MOST PROVOCATIVE things that happened today. And so if we swallow only what they’re feeding us- well, it all feels exciting going down- but we end up feeling a little icky, a little paranoid, a little defeated.

BUT LOOK- our friends at CWS would like to remind us that yes, there is evil in the world –  but there is much, MUCH MORE GOOD IN THE WORLD. That while the news shows us the loudest acts of evil from a few –  the masses go about quietly doing good. Trying to take care of each other. Making sure that in our immediate and global communities, as often as possible- Love Wins.

So, without further ado…I bring you today’s GOOD NEWS, brought to you by our friends at CWS.


Maurice Bloem

This guy, Maurice Bloem, was in Indonesia when the devastating tsunami hit in 2004, and he headed up CWS’s response for storm survivors there. Every single day he pours out his life in service to others. He knows that the first 1000 days of a life are the most important days for child development, so he walks 100 MILES EVERY YEAR to help mamas and babies he’s never met get the nutrition they need. THANKS, FRIEND!

Healthy Baby

2. THIS CREW in Louisville, Kentucky IS REALLY GOOD NEWS.

Refugee Welcome Group

These folks welcome refugees into their homes and serve them and love them and then speak out to anyone who will listen-  so that refugees around the world might find the peace and freedom that is their birthright.

Refugee Girl

3. THESE GORGEOUS PEOPLE in Mapleton, Minnesota are GOOD NEWS.

Packing School Kits

They spent afternoons filling bags of school supplies so that these kids in Missouri…

School kits

…and these girls in Serbia, and thousands and thousands more children like them in the US and around the world will have the supplies they need to go to school. Look at the smiles. I die.




She uses her hands and her huge heart to restock shelves of a CWS-supported local food pantry so that for today –  her neighbors will not go hungry.

5. THIS COMMUNITY in Red Bank, New Jersey IS GREAT NEWS!!!

Redbank CROP Hunger Walk

Hundreds of community members in Red Bank show up every year to participate in the CWS CROP Hunger Walk, a walk that supports all the rest of the good news we already talked about.  The CROP Hunger Walk tagline is “Ending Hunger One Step at a Time,” and each step is a step to empower the millions of people around the world who are forced to walk to get to find clean water, to access education, to escape violence or natural disaster.  There are over 1000 CROP Hunger Walks taking place this fall in communities around the United States. Here’s a link to find one if you want to join your steps with theirs. THANK YOU, RED BANK!

6. And here’s my favorite.
This is the President and CEO of CWS, Rev. John L. McCullough, getting arrested in Washington, D.C. for peacefully protesting the lack of care that the immigrant children were receiving.

Rev. John McCullough


Okay. Good Wolf feeling strong? Great. Carry On, Warriors and:


Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
Join the Momastery community on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & Pinterest

Sep 022014

Originally published August 14, 2013

You guys.

I just dropped off all three of my children for their first day of school.

The littlest one started kindergarten today, which means that for the first time in eleven years, they will all spend five full days at school. Without me. My house is empty.

The dogs are running from room to room, looking for their best friends. My bedroom is so quiet that as I type right now, I can actually hear the dishwasher running in the kitchen. I’m looking down the barrel of an eight-hour day with no more babies to juggle, no nap times or play dates to schedule, no snuggling dirty little necks after lunch. No PB and Js to make. No band aids or popsicles to pass out.

I don’t consider myself a particularly nostalgic mama, and so I was surprised at the rush of emotions I experienced upon leaving the school this morning. It was a little embarrassing, to tell you the truth. Because though I tried to be stoic, I just couldn’t keep it in. Before I could make it to the van, ten years of built-up mama emotion spilled out onto that school sidewalk.





I’ve always loved the “It Gets Better” campaign that some wise, gentle souls created to encourage gay youth. I think we should steal it to encourage parents of babies and toddlers.


Listen, there is JOY TO BE FOUND in snuggle time and there is joy to be found in alone time. There is a time for it all. And the way we survive this parenting roller coaster of emotions is to find the joy in each new phase. EMBRACE THE NOW!

I GOTTA GO! I’m off to stand in my living room NOT WAITING FOR ANYONE TO ASK ME FOR SNACKS!!!!!!

So much love and peace and quiet and JOY TO THE WORLD. 


P.S. My mom just emailed me this: “Send first day of school pictures!” I sent the pictures above. She wrote back: “OF THE KIDS.”

Oh. Crap. I said. Forgot. But to be fair, this is kind of my day. So, you know. Back off a little.  


Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
Join the Momastery community on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & Pinterest

Aug 282014

Originally published June 8th

 From My Inbox This Morning:

Dear G,

I do not feel beautiful. Everything about your work makes me feel understood and less alone- except for your appearance. Do you wake up looking like that?

Dear M,

Yes. Yes, I do. I am so sorry to tell you that natural beauty has always been my cross to bear. Below are two pictures for your examination. One is my headshot- which was taken after two hours of “hair and make-up,” thirty minutes of arranging perfect lighting, and what I can only imagine was forty nine hours of photo-shop. The other picture was taken this morning, right after I opened your email. Since the extremely subtle and nuanced differences between the photos are certain to make it quite difficult for you to determine which is which, I will tell you that the one on the LEFT is from this morning.

For now- the armor I wear comes in the form of cosmetic bottles from a department store. Since the armor I used to wear came in the form of vodka bottles from the ABC store- I call this progress. One day, the only armor I’ll need between me and the world will be a cup of tea and a smile.  That day is not today, but it’s coming. I’m extremely patient with myself, so I can wait.

And even so…EVEN THOUGH I wake up looking like that first picture everyday- I would insist to you that I AM  beautiful and I’m becoming more beautiful every day. Beautiful means “full of beauty.” Since I am almost forty now – God, I love saying that – I finally know what beauty is. To me, beauty is the beach near my house, puttering around my kitchen, the laughter of a good friend, my dogs’ stinky fur, Amma’s inability to say the letter R, Tish’s sensitive heart, Chase’s darkening summer skin against his ultra white teeth, Craig playing hide and seek by himself, the steeple of my beloved church, a hot chai tea, and the banyan trees in my front yard. Today I will FILL UP WITH THIS BEAUTY. I will SEE this beauty and really NOTICE IT and smell it and hear it and roll around in it and soak it all up. I will allow all of this beauty to become a part of me- to BECOME ME-  and by the end of the day I will be so freaking beautiful from the inside out that folks will stop and stare, probably.

If you do not feel beautiful then FILL UP, Precious Sister.

And if that doesn’t work, I‘ll send over hair and make-up. Freaking magicians.

One more thing, friend. Just in case you’re too tired to search for your own beauty today-  you can borrow some of mine. This is our banyan tree holding our Amma. She’s on her wope swing, having a weally wonderful time.

amma swing

Cawwy On, Wawwiow.


P.S. Here’s the beauty routine I taught my eight year old daughter. FOOLPROOF.

Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
Join the Momastery community on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & Pinterest