A Thanksgiving Gift for the Mother of the Bride

In our busyness, though—whatever it may entail—let’s not fail to experience true thanksgiving of the heart. I don’t know about you, but I have much to thank God for this year. He is worthy of all my thanks and praise.

I pray this little gift—a poem of mine—will help you express your heart to God today too. Happy Thanksgiving!

With Thankful Hearts

With thankful hearts we come to you
With thankful hearts we bow,
You’ve blessed in double measure, Lord,
You keep giving even now.

Your goodness overwhelms us
Your love it doesn’t fail,
You walk with us through good and bad
Over every hill and vale.

And in return we give to you
Hearts filled with thanks and love,
And ask you, Lord, to pour them out
As gifts to others from above.

“let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe.” Hebrews 12:28 NIV

*What would you like to give thanks for today? I’m thanking God for an above and beyond blessing he gave me last week. I signed a book contract for the Christmas devotional book I’ve been working on! B&H Publishing is going to publish it and it will hit store shelves Fall 2025! Thank you, Lord, for this great blessing!

*You might also like to read A Mother of the Bride’s Thanksgiving Prayer.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride and also my Wedding Inspiration cards, check out my Books/My Work page.

*The new issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, came out earlier this month. It’s not too late to receive it. Sign-up is free! Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

Wedding Planning Advice: Give Yourself the Gift of Easy

Mother of the Bride, if you’re like I was while in wedding planning mode, you’re all about saving a dollar or two (or ten!) every chance you get, right? Your mental calculator runs non-stop, causing you to continually feel the pressure of mounting expenses. You begin to look for every way you can to save a little money. But you know what? Sometimes it’s not worth it.

My first time around the MOB block, I decided we should forgo the pre-cut tulle circles we wanted to use for making the favors—little bags of chocolate candies tied with pretty ribbon. In an attempt to save some dollars, I decided we could cut our own circles of tulle.

Big mistake. At a time when both the bride and I had more to do than we had time, we had to push ourselves even more. Yes, believe it or not, the tulle circle-cutting fairies did not show up at nighttime to cut the circles for us.

My decision to cut costs ended up costing us in other ways—in time, in stress, and in weariness. The dollars saved were definitely not worth it.

Learn from my mistake, dear MOB. Carefully weigh all the costs before making more work for yourself or the bride. Sometimes the best thing you can do is give yourself the gift of easy.

*You might also like to read A Simple Wedding Expense TipMothers of the Bride Need Prayer, and Gather Photos Early for Wedding Day Slide Show.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride check out my Books/My Work page.

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early November. Sign-up is FREE. *Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*Flickr photo by FutUnBeidlCreative Commons License

God—Our Gracious Giver of Bounty

“You crown the year with your bounty, and your carts overflow with abundance.” Psalm 65:11 NIV

Thriving backyard gardens. Colorful farmer’s markets. Seasonal fresh fruit offered in restaurants. Just a few signs of summer’s bounty in full swing. And if we’re not quite there yet, we will be soon, won’t we?

As we all get opportunity to enjoy the beauty and the nourishing benefits of growing and thriving gardens this summer, let’s remember the One who makes the bounty possible. And let’s remember he is not only crowning our year with good garden produce, but he’s blessing our lives with abundance in other areas as well.

For example, I’m rejoicing this month in a wonderful blessing God has given our family. Our daughter Kristin and her family are now living closer to us! Our travel time to see them has been cut in half, and that means we can visit for a quick overnight or even make a long day trip when necessary. And by the way, that highway runs both ways. They will be coming to see us more too!

We’ve seen great blessing in the lives of my extended family recently as well. My sister Debbie and her husband celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in May, and our entire family will be gathering for a joint celebration next month in Branson. The whole family has not been together since July 2017 so this upcoming gathering will be a great blessing indeed for all of us.

God has also brought bounty into my writer life this year through my writers group, the Fellowship of Christian Writers. Our group, like many others, has been struggling since the pandemic, but this year he led a core group of us to step out in faith and assume positions we didn’t think we could manage. And as you can imagine, he has rewarded those steps of faith and is growing and revitalizing our group in wonderful ways this year. We give him all the praise!

These are just a few current examples from my life. If I listed the bounty of an entire year, I’d have to do it in installments! Now that I think about it, my gratitude journal is one way of doing this.

What about you? How has God crowned your year with bounty? What abundance has he blessed you with lately? Join me, won’t you, in giving him glory for the good things he’s doing in our lives. I’m all ears!

“They will come and shout for joy . . . they will rejoice in the bounty of the LORD . . .” Jeremiah 31:12 NIV

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early August. Sign-up is FREE. *Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride check out my Books/My Work page.

*Flickr photo by juicyverve, Creative Commons License

A Pearl from the Word to Make Your Heart Sing

Consider with me, if you will, a little pearl from the Word of God today. Since the Psalms are jam-packed with treasure, I didn’t have to look far to find a real gem.

Psalm 87:7 says, “As they make music they will sing, ‘All my fountains are in you.’”

I love both parts of this verse. Notice it doesn’t say “if they make music.” It says “as they make music.” Making music comes naturally to many of us—that’s how God made us. But I think believers also want to make music and sing because of the joy of knowing God as our Father. Music is an overflow of our hearts, a spring bubbling up that we can’t contain.

In fact, the second half of the verse alludes to that bubbling spring as the Psalmist says, “All my fountains are in you.” And there’s the real pearl in this passage. The living waters of our lives and the refreshment we daily need are found in God. Life is found in him.

Some of us may be seeking that life and refreshment in other things. If we do, we’ll eventually find that those things don’t satisfy our thirst the way the Lord does. Sure, our families, our friends, and the activities we love may bring joy and refreshment, but who gives us those blessings? Yes, the Lord is the Giver of all good gifts.

I don’t know about you, but all my fountains are in him. And that makes my heart sing!

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17 NIV

*What fountain or blessing in your life makes your heart sing in a special way today?

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early May. Sign-up is FREE! *Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride and also my Wedding Inspiration cards, check out my Books/My Work page.

*Flickr photo by jenny downing, Creative Commons License

Wedding Planning Help + Holiday Blogging Break

Mother of the Bride, with Christmas inching ever closer, I’ve decided to take a blogging break until after the first of the year. Like you I’m sure, I want to focus on faith, family, and friends over the next few weeks. We need to make the most of our precious time and do what’s really important, don’t we?

So allow me to go ahead and wish you and yours a very merry Christmas—and I wish all the best to you and your daughter as you continue preparing for her big day. May the following help you in that endeavor!

Here are five resources from yours truly:

  1. Read my book Mother of the Bride: Refreshment and Wisdom for the Mother of the Bride. Allow me to be your friend for the journey!
  2. Look through the list of Favorite Posts on the sidebar and click the links to the ones that spark your interest. (If you’re on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click View Full Site to find the sidebar items.)
  3. Use the Search bar. Simply type in any topic you’d like to find some ideas or info for and see what comes up!
  4. Check out my Pinterest pageAmong other things, it features eighteen wedding-related boards!
  5. Glance through the roundup posts I’ve written. They are listed below. Roundups can be very helpful:

Wedding Photography: Bridal Portrait Roundup

Roundup: Popular Mother of the Bride Blog Posts

Bridal Bouquet Roundup

Wedding Cake Roundup

Wedding Registry Roundup

Wedding Photo Ideas Roundup That Star the Groom

Finally, if your daughter is in the beginning stages of gathering ideas and investigating her options, try Martha Stewart Weddings and Brides.  And if she wants a rustic wedding, check out Rustic Wedding Chic.

Hope this helps you and your sweet bride-to-be daughter, MOB!

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride and also my Wedding Inspiration cards, check out my Books/My Work page.

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, comes out in early February. Sign-up is free! Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*Flickr photo by DaDaAceCreative Commons License