Storm on the Horizon

We spent a glorious four days at the seashore. We walked, we ran, we swam, we splashed. We saw the water tame and the water wild. We saw the sunrise and sunset. We saw the first sliver of moon over the dark waters. I held my newborn baby in the wind and sun and salty…

Embracing Every Season of Motherhood (Podcast #17)

Sharing Pitter Patter, a song that I wrote when my first babies were small, as well as thoughts about becoming a woman who embraces motherhood at every stage. This photo is my breathtakingly beautiful mother, age 43, holding me, her ninth child. I learned so much from her example. Talking about finding gratitude, praying for…

The Birth Story of Haven McCabe

Our baby’s due date came and went without the first sign of nearing labor. Each following day could have been the perfect beginning of a birth story. The day Randy discovered the song of the wood thrush and absorbed himself in writing a piece of music using the intervals of the bird’s song. There was…

Beauty in the Midst of Darkness

There is so much darkness in this world. It presses in against us. In the middle of the night, it enters into our minds in the quiet spaces and works to leave a shadow that lingers even when the morning comes. We wake to light, but its brilliance is dimmed by the memory of those…

Wake Up and Make Things

It is early morning. I stole away from the nursing baby and am sitting in my little quiet corner of the world, on my back-deck, surrounded by potted plants and birdsong. I am writing and contemplating my messy life. I am a homeschooling mother of seven children. My husband and I have a home business…

Creative Family Advent, 25 New Family Traditions for the Christmas Season

It is Christmastime!  I am always looking for ways to savor the season more before it slips away, truly wanting to create lasting memories with my children.  If you feel the same, this post is for you.  Here you will find 25 new family traditions for a creative Christmas season.  These are low stress, nearly-zero-prep,…

Standing in the Hallway of Sorrow, thoughts on losing my Mother

(In honor of my beautiful, selfless Mother who went home to be with Jesus yesterday afternoon, hours after I wrote this post.) I am going to write something that is braver and stronger than I now feel, but I believe it with all my heart. Daddy met Mama on a Sunday morning at a little…

Voices of My Life, an abridged biography

It’s easy to look back over years as a series of big events–the day I was born, schools I attended, graduations, marriage, jobs held, the birthdays of my children…  These are the visible rings around my tree, the important details in a brief biography of my life. But when I close my eyes and let…

Big Announcement from The Chester Family!

Well, the day is here that I share something big that is happening to our family. After years of wrestling with a vision of a more creative life, showing up season by season to journal, write, make art, make music, encourage my husband in his incredible music, support our children through homeschool and giving them…

Singing Out a Baby, the Birth Story of Rune O’Carolan Chester

“I am walking into this labor differently than I ever have before.  I am walking into it with a spirit of fight.  Not just trying to keep my peace, not just trying to stay calm, not just surviving and getting to the other side.  I am walking into this labor with the desire to put…

Creative Family Advent Printable Calendar

It’s almost December!  I made this Creative Family Advent Printable Calendar so that you can have a visual of the days ahead.  Print it out, stick it on the fridge, and stay inspired to connect with your family through art, music, brainstorming, creative writing, storytelling, and more.  If you want more details about each activity and…