Archive | September, 2012

One Year of Mama Says

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

Almost a year ago I started a Friday feature called “Mama Says.” Every week I shared something my mother has said that caused me to laugh, reflect, act. It’s been fun to hear that people looked forward to what Mama had to say each week. “Mama Says” as a weekly feature has come to an […]

What I Like About Ruth Beiler

Olivia Newport Accidentally Amish cover

Accidentally Amish features Annie Friesen, a technology-addicted modern woman who finds herself unexpectedly among an Amish community she did not know existed. She discovers that Ruth Beiler, descended from three hundred years of the Amish, believes God is calling her out of the community that Annie is thinking about joining. I admire Ruth’s toughness. I […]

Can Your Friends Make You Sick?

Olivia Newport Hawaii sunset

Can you friends make you sick? Frankly, I think the answer is yes. Not friends exclusively. It may be coworkers who cause stress. It may be neighbors you don’t know how to communicate with. It may be your family—people you love and would give your life for—who are driving your blood pressure up. Most of […]

Mama Says #50

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

When I spent an extended visit with my mother in Florida last summer, I met a next door neighbor who gave me his phone number and said I could call any time I needed something—anything at all. I left feeling assured that if I had to manage some sort of emergency from a distance, I […]

What I Like About Rufus Beiler

Olivia Newport Amish plow

Rufus Beiler moved from Lancaster County, Pennsylvania to Custer County, Colorado. He discovered that farming in dry, rocky, southwestern Colorado is a whole ‘nother skill than agriculture in good old PA. He’s not a quitter. He sticks with his family as they face the challenge of carving out a new life in a new settlement […]

What Are We Willing to Believe?

Olivia Newport bluejay

A few weeks ago my friend Pat died. I wrote a while ago about the beautiful decades-long friendship between Pat and Esther, whose children are married. At Pat’s funeral, twice I held Esther while she sobbed and said how much she was going to miss Pat. And she will. Pat was a lifelong reader and […]

Mama Says #49

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

My mom was telling about something that caught her eye while she was out shopping. Her response was, “It’s nice. I like it. I’ll have some.” Okay, so it’s not a flawless way to make purchasing decisions, especially if your budget boxes you in, but it made me think that sometimes we … er, I […]

What I Like about Annie Friesen

Accidentally Amish cover-1

“Who is Annie Friesen?” you ask. I am happy to introduce you. Annie is the main character in the contemporary story line of my forthcoming book, Accidentally Amish. She’s smart. She’s determined. She’s self-reliant. She’s brave. She’s resourceful. And she is capable of opening her heart when her life takes a turn she never in […]

What Does That Pink Card Mean?

Olivia Newport triglyerides report

When did you have your last physical, and did you get a little pink card? My physical was last December. I dutifully followed up with the blood work, and a couple of weeks later got a little pink card in the mail. For the first time in my life, my triglycerides were just above the […]

Mama Says #48

Mom and Tag - Olivia Newport

My mom lives in south Florida, on the Gulf side. So the first part of this week was of particular curiosity for me. Where would Isaac hit land? Would it be a hurricane? What was the weather forecast for my mother’s town? When I talked to her on the phone she said my brother, who […]