I'm a redeemed child of God and the momma to four vivacious daughters. I'm passionate about finding hidden blessings in the trials of life, living it out in an honest and open way, while encouraging those around me to believe in better.


the land between …

The holidays are going to be very … very different for us this year.  Nothing seems to make sense and it’s all very surreal.  Sometimes when you’re in the midst of a trial, you’re so busy putting one foot in front of the other, taking each day as it comes … not allowing yourself to look into the future … that when you finally look up, you’re surprised to see how far you’ve come, as well as how much time has passed.

With my last glance at the calendar, I can’t ignore the fact that Thanksgiving and Christmas are just around the corner!  Literally.

So what’s a mom to do?  Make the best of it of course!

The girls are blessed this year with a pretty hearty Christmas break, so I decided to completely change things up this year.  Christmas won’t be … can’t be … like our previous Christmases … so instead of feeling the pain of the difference, I’ve decided to make it fun.  We’ll be getting out of dodge going out of town mid-month to our heaven on earth and will enjoy the time hunting lizards and soaking up the sun.

We’re also celebrating early.  Like early.  Like I-already-have-presents-under-the-tree early.

{apparently I do let my children climb very high ladders}

{the teen was not inspired and facebook was calling}

{babygirl’s taken to putting on make-up with markers}

{our family sign works in all seasons}

{almost 80 degrees yesterday! light up the palm tree!}

This isn’t my normal MO … I’m all about taking one holiday as it comes, but given that we don’t really have a “normal” anymore … I’m currently tossing tradition to the wind and basically doing what I can to fill any holes the girls might feel in this land between we’re currently walking.

I’ve gotten a few emails and cards {thank you!!} with prayers and thoughts of the upcoming holidays … friends knowing we don’t have a normal this year.  Heck, with this land between … not knowing what next year holds … we can’t even start a new tradition.  And that’s okay … I know there’ll be a time for new traditions … there’s peace in that fact.

So right now my momma heart is focused on buffering anything the girls might be missing, be it physical or emotional.  And I’m thinking a change of scenery to their little lizard haven will be just what the doctor ordered!


As I think about the purpose of this post … other than explaining why my Christmas cards may or may not be in the mail next week … I’d like to encourage you, as parents …

If you find yourself in the land between {basically walking a path of uncertainty}, I encourage you to push through … hold your head high … let the joy of the Lord be your strength.  Definitely you want to do these things for yourself, but almost more importantly, I encourage you to do it for your children.

Parenting is sacrifice.  Sacrifice of our emotions.  Of our wants.  Our wishes.  Our desire to climb into bed and sleep for years.

I think it’s a true testament to living out the joy of the Lord, when I see my girls happy, laughing, living.  No one would know the pain that hides around the corner.  And sure … there are tears.  Plenty.

But I’m working my bootie off to build our foundation on solid Rock, so when the pain comes … we know Who to give it to.  We can give it … and leave it.

Let your past make you better, not bitter.  And all that.

I think about what I’m modeling for my girls.  I pray they look back someday and say, “you were going through all that?!”  We had no idea.

Does that make any sense, or am I just rambling now?  :)

I’m not saying to cover-up or gloss over your pain.  My girls know I hurt … I get plenty cranky, impatient and irritable.  And I try to always go back to let them know I’m sorry, or what I’m feeling and why.

You have sorrow.  You have pain.

You have to feel it.  But you don’t have to swim in it.

Or maybe … just maybe you do take a swim.  I guess what I’m encouraging you with is … you don’t have to drown in it.

Well.  There ya have it.  The post that went every-which-way!

Be blessed.  Be safe.  And have an incredible Thanksgiving holiday!

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Posted in christmas, family photos, family thoughts

13 Responses to “the land between …”

  1. dawn says:

    let me just whisper… i love you. cuz that’s all i got ‘cept some tears. xoxo

  2. heather says:

    I think a little dose of magic is just what you guys need!

    PS So not fair with the putting up of the tree in tank tops and shorts!

  3. Beth says:

    through my tears of happiness for you I can say that you are beautiful inside and out. You have made some serious lemonaide:) Have a wonderful holiday!!!!! love and miss xoxoxo

  4. Leslie says:

    You, my friend, are amazing. So many people have crumbled for far lesser things . . . but you’re still solid and shining bright! I know it hasn’t been easy, but you’re doing an amazing job. And I’m so proud of you! :-)

    Enjoy your adventures!! Love you!

  5. Dawn says:

    What a beautiful tree you have! And your doorway looks pretty too. I’m sorry to hear you are having tough times but you have an amazing attitude for sure. Your kids are lucky to have you.

  6. Marcia says:

    Some day we will see the tapestry from God’s view and will all come together as a beautiful picture…day by day we weave our thread of life not knowing what the outcome will be, but with faith we travel on…It is amazing how we are able to go forward when “the rug” is pulled out from underneath and while I always feel the loss of a husband, a son…we do go on…Your girls are very lucky to have a Mother as loving and caring and positive as you in their lives…Have Blessed Holidays…

  7. the reminder that we don’t have to drown in it is perfect! there are a lot of distractions in life that could eventually lead to that type of a demise… and the crazy part is, its all to easy to not notice that. these distractions are designed by the adversary in such a specifically sneaky way, that the dangers are all too easily overlooked. so…. i LOVE that you’re sounding a warning about it. a wake up call of sorts. these distractions can be emotional, they can even be physical. either way they detract from what is best spiritually. so, yeah. pretty much you rock! hang in there, while you work tirelessly to give these precious girls of yours all that they need this year. normal may feel very foreign right now, but these years of tested & proved strength will be the years that mean the most. normal’s overrated. these trying times are what proves what we’re made of, what we’re capable of, and the depth of your love for what is right & most important. ::hugs::

    (not sure if that comment made sense. hoping it came across as clearly as it was rolling around in my head & my heart.)

  8. Barbie says:

    Praying for His love and grace to shine on you during this holiday season. I am new to your blog and cannot seem to find your story. I would love to read more about this season you are walking through if you won’t point me there. Blessings to you my friend.

  9. Mia says:

    I almost don’t even know what to write Tracie. You are such a strong and beautiful person and you and your family do not deserve this pain you are all going through. If there was ever somehing I could do to make it all go away I would. Your words are always beautiful, but my heart aches for your family. It’s hard, but you will get through it with God helping you all the way. I wish I knew what you were going through, but I know when times comes and you feel that it is the right time you will let us know. Be strong and stay amazing. Much love to you and your family! <3 xx

  10. Debbi says:

    Blessings to you and your family. I know first hand how difficult it is to navigate through the holidays (and life in genera)l after a life changing event. I hear often the words “I don’t know how you do it” . We both know, that really there is not a choice. You just do it, and you survive. And in the end, perhaps you find something even more wonderful than you could have imagined. And your new “normal” is full of happiness.

    You are doing a beautiful job with your girls. Enjoy your escape to paradise.

  11. Heather McKinstry says:

    i love you.
    I’m thankful for you and your honest heart.

  12. Ovid Ricketson says:

    From the surrender comes the peace and rest. Then comes the restoration, annointing and uplifting. I am so proud of you and your family. May you have a truly wonderful Holiday Season with quiet time, alone with the Lord. With his love, Merry Christmas.

  13. Teresa Coleman says:

    My two girls and I have walked the land in between, they 8 and 11, their dad had been killed. What you share with your girls now will be with them forever in their memories and hearts. The greatest thing you have to share is your faith in God, I congratulate you for helping them find their way and In turn, lighting your way. I know God is faithful, for He will see through to many more memories in life’s walk. Stay true to him and to yourself. Thank you for sharing!

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