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Harris & Willow Meets Brick & Mortar

The INFP in me is a dreamer. Sometimes I have to remind myself to think big enough to dream but small enough to act. I live in a great community in West Michigan. I see so much opportunity here and I can't help but desire to be a part of it. It's something I can't shake and it's a vision I've had for months now: a retail shop in West Michigan. There are wonderful parks, restaurants, shops, and beaches in Muskegon....

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Book the Stinkin’ Weekend

Four weeks ago, on Friday of Labor Day weekend, I rolled up to my family's cottage expecting to meet a locksmith. Instead, I met four dear friends of mine; four (of six) girls from college who have seen me at my very worst and love me anyway. Girls who celebrated with me on my wedding day. When we moved, I stumbled across a pile of inside jokes from college: I unwrapped a wine glass with a note that said "because...

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DeVos & De Baby

There is something eerie about nighttime. Everyone is quiet. Everything is still. And when there is commotion, it feels chaotic yet incredibly lonely. Deep dark hours of the night have a tendency to swallow up any security I have. It's safe to say that things felt very insecure and uncertain when we rushed Maddie to the ER at 1:30am last Thursday morning. We had spent all day driving home from Indianapolis, turning a 5 hour drive into 10 hours. Maddox had...

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Small Homes Build Tight Families

When Patrick and I were newlyweds we lived in a shoebox of an apartment and I loved it. Our entire lives were in that place. We lived simply and had just enough furniture to function, including a broken love seat as our main living room seating. I didn't buy much home decor, mostly because there wasn't adequate space to decorate. And, actually, those have become such fond memories for me. I'm introverted and Patrick is beyond extroverted. I need quiet time....

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Something New

If there's one thing I've learned in my few years of marriage it's that time is flying by and there's no time like the present. I'm dedicating this new year to being creative and working hard to be the best wife and mother I can be (which is probably a different definition than yours). I left First & Vine in Spooner and it took me a couple months to realize that doesn't have to end my career in sign-making or even...

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Home: A Letter to Maddox

My Dear Sweet Son, You've had a whirlwind of a week. You've been hauled across three states, put to bed in an unfamiliar room in an unfamiliar apartment. Honestly, I feel I've ripped you away from anyone who knows you well. You'll never know the Northwoods the way you could have, so there's a couple things I want to tell you about the place where you were born. I'm very proud to have been born where I was (in East Michigan), and...

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Sweet Assurance

We were wrapping up our 36 week ultrasound, which had to have been our 7th one. Truly. With high blood pressure, my doctor was overly cautious. We were so appreciative of this attentiveness. We loved our Tech too, but she was unusually quiet during this appointment. "You're seeing your doctor today?" she asked. We nodded. I had a passing thought - but that's all it was: a thought. And it wasn't enough to really complete an entire idea and definitely not something...

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Hosting the Perfect Christmas Party

Can we just get real about parties? I'm so bad at them. I love gathering with people. I love warm and cozy homes. I love good food. But sometimes, as in most of my waking life, I do not have it together enough to host these kinds of events. Because I’m a pastor’s wife, it’s probably assumed that I have an innate gift for hosting. I don’t. I really, really don’t. I’m really good at buying dinner rolls and putting...

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Already In Line

Last week was a whirlwind. My sweet and sassy grandma passed away. Patrick, Maddie, and I packed up on Saturday evening and headed down in an attempt to see her one last time. We didn't make it. But we are grateful for her peace and God's true presence and provision in those last hours of her life. We realized Maddox was sick as we were nearing Illinois so I knew we were in for quite a treat. After a nasty cold...

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Parenting Rule #1: Any Song Sung Softly Enough is a Lullaby

A friend recently said "Parenting is like folding a fitted sheet. Nobody knows how to do it."  This is more true than anything I've heard in a long time. And if I'm being completely honest, I roll fitted sheets into a ball and shove them into the back of the linen closet. So what does that tell you about my parenting skills? My kid doesn't usually sleep more than twenty minutes at a time during the day. But he sleeps ten straight...

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