Dear Mom: I’m Honestly Kind of Mad at You

With my mother’s birthday coming up, I figured it was about time to write her another “Dear Mom” letter.I know I’m supposed to be counting my blessings, but, unfortunately, I’m not in a very sweet and sentimental mood this week. I’m feeling frustrated and tired. And brutally honest.And so, this letter is brutally honest....more

For the Love (of Finding Your Tribe) & A Giveaway

I crave community.That’s probably why I’m a bit of a direct sales junkie. I like the personal connection of it.I like knowing that my purchase is helping someone out in a tangible way.I also love buying products that raise funds for those in need. This was the inspiration behindmy #texasstrong fundraiser to help out central Texas flood victims....more

Why We Should Talk About Miscarriage

This week marks 5 years since our miscarriage.My pregnancy loss was the first really difficult thing (besides my mom’s early onset Alzheimer’s diagnosis, of course) that I experienced without her support.Yet, it made me feel closer to her because I knew she had walked that path....more

My Mother in the Mirror: A Legacy of Depression

I remember standing outside my mother’s walk-in closet, listening to her sob for what felt like an eternity, on multiple occasions during elementary school.Pain and tears were something she taught me, quite literally, to hide behind closed doors....more

God Bless My Southern Heart: Reflecting on Charleston

I really didn’t want to write this post.  I don’t like to get political here, and I’m sure some of you will disagree with my honest and heartfelt opinion, but here it is…God bless my Southern heartWith a blog called For the Love of Dixie (and a mother named Dixie), I kind of feel like I should weigh in on the Confederate battle flag controversy.  My Southern heart has been so conflicted over that stupid flag, trying to wrap my brain around the fact that a crazy person killed 9 people and now, somehow, a flag is to blame....more

It Is Well with My Soul: Two Years Later

I struggle with contentment.  I’m a perfectionist, firstborn, type A, always looking for something better, worried about the future, and a slave to my own expectations.The week of my mother’s death was much more difficult than I had anticipated.  I was just sure that after years of watching my mother suffer and decline in the grips of early onset Alzheimer’s disease, her passing would be the easy part.  But when it came down to it actually happening, I was 4 months pregnant with my second child, exhausted, emotional and terrified....more

#texasstrong Fundraiser for Hays County Flood Relief

Update as of 6-3-15 at 9:30 am:  We raised over $10,000 in just the first 24 hours of this fundraiser and have now raised over $55,000 (and counting) since Saturday for Texas Hill Country flood victims! What a beautiful tribute to my momma. Thank you, Texas!!!! Teespring has also added a "100% Verified Donation" badge to each of our #texasstrong campaigns, as they will be sending all profits directly to United Way of Hays County Disaster Recovery Fund.Stay tuned: We will soon be adding phone cases and embroidered hats to our Teespring campaigns!...more
Denise Thank you!  We're up to $55K raised now!!! And an interview with People Magazine today!more

Progression of My Mother's Early Onset Alzheimer's in Photos

After watching Still Alice with my husband recently, I began looking through photos of my mom in old blog posts–photos of her living with the enemy, early onset Alzheimer’s disease.  I pieced together the pictures in chronological order, trying to create a visual timeline of her decline....more

Choosing Joy: 10 Ways to Bring Sunshine to Your Soul

I have struggled with depression, anxiety and even panic attacks since adolescence.Some of this has been hormonal, some has been situational.  My mental health affects my physical health, zapping my energy, my appetite and my immune system, and I end up plagued by weight loss, frequent illness and chronic sinusitis.And, inevitably, it affects my marriage and my parenting....more

When Mother's Day is Hard

This Sunday will be my second Mother’s Day since my mother died.When Mother’s Day is hardEvery day has felt like Mother’s Day since my mother’s diagnosis with Alzheimer’s disease in May 9 years ago.  Honoring and protecting her became my life’s work during her illness....more