Home books Teach These Souls to Fly {a give-away}

Teach These Souls to Fly {a give-away}

by Shawni
My Mom and sisters and I had a little breakfast together a while back.

We sat around a table bathed in light form a huge window, relishing in the opportunity to have each other close. 

How grateful I am for those women.

As we finished eating and came to the close of our customary detailed discussion reviewing our food choices (we’re nerdy about good food), my Mom pulled out a “chapter” of a book someone had asked her to edit/review.  She told us she wanted to read it to us, and, with her velvety reading voice that always brings me back to my childhood, she began to unfold some rich motherhood beauty.

I want to share what she read because it is strong. 

Because my dear Mother could scarcely finish the ending through her tears. 

And because as she read, each of us blinked at each other with our own wet cheeks, more in awe than ever that we get to be Mothers (my little sister Charity not yet, but I’ll be honest, she mothers our children right along with us).  In awe of the sacredness that comes with loving and caring for those children entrusted into our care.  In awe of the sheer beauty of the chaos mixed in with the holiness of it all. 

Because of that chapter read that day, this painting has become one of my favorites. 
2008-06-02 house ideas 73470It speaks to me.

And it hangs next to my closet, reminding me of the beauty motherhood brings every day (thanks to my sister Saydi, who sent it to each of us for Christmas).

Here is the chapter (sorry in advance that it is cut and pasted in a little gappy):
viewer (1)  viewer
viewer (2)
viewer (3)
viewer (7)
viewer (4)
viewer (5)
viewer (6)
“What other career could claim as its end-product the elevation of a human soul?  Not just the enlightening of a mind or the development of a body, but the improvement of every aspect of a vibrant child of God?”

Oh I especially love that last part. 

I love the imagery of that strong mother in the painting concentrating with all her heart on that baby who is so oblivious to the magnitude of her love. 

And I love that I get to be one of those mothers, concentration high, love unending, teaching my own little human souls to fly.
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So this is a single chapter in a book that was recently published.

It’s called Choosing Motherhood: Stories of Successful Women Who Put Family First and you can read more about it here
.

I get to give one copy away.

Just in time for Mother’s Day.

My disclaimer is that I have not read the rest of the book yet, so I can’t promise the rest of the chapters will shine as brightly as this one.  But it is so intriguing because each of the sixteen chapters are written by young mothers who studied or supported husbands who studied at Yale University.  Can’t wait to snuggle down and read it all.

So enter a comment for a chance to win your own copy.

I’ll announce the winner on Saturday morning.

Love, Shawni

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328 comments

lannandem May 1, 2013 - 1:48 pm

thanks for sharing! i love what you said about the holiness and chaos of motherhood, so true!

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Jenny May 1, 2013 - 1:49 pm

I'd love to win a copy, as a young mom of 3 kids who's husband is in his medical residency. I may really relate to these other women. 🙂

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Rayanne Melick May 1, 2013 - 1:51 pm

This is totally how I feel about motherhood. I would love to read the rest of the book! Thanks for sharing this!

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Missy & Jimmy May 1, 2013 - 1:53 pm

I would love to win a copy of the book! This chapter gave me the perspective that I needed this morning. Thank you! Love your blog.

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Jenn Nielsen May 1, 2013 - 1:56 pm

How BEAUTIFUL! Thank you for sharing that this morning – it is exactly what I needed. I'd love to read more. 🙂

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Brandy Lynn May 1, 2013 - 1:57 pm

I would love to win this book. What an amazing chapter! I can't wait to read more.

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Kristen May 1, 2013 - 2:03 pm

I would love to win a copy of the book, sounds great!

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Lara Duzett May 1, 2013 - 2:05 pm

What a great way to start my day! Thanks!

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Christy May 1, 2013 - 2:05 pm

Oh how I loved this, every last word! Any idea where I can get that picture your sister gave to you? I'd love to hang one in my room too. It would be such a great help to me on the really hard days.

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April May 1, 2013 - 2:07 pm

What a beautifully written interpretation of motherhood. It is a career no other woman could learn to appreciate until she has clocked in herself and worked the laboriously long hours. This sounds like a wonderful book.

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Taylor Family May 1, 2013 - 2:08 pm

Thank you for sharing this! I loved it! I would love to have a copy of the book!

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LAYTON FAMILY May 1, 2013 - 2:11 pm

I've been looking for a great read for the upcoming break…this looks like a perfect fit!

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katy May 1, 2013 - 2:14 pm

Thank you so much for sharing. My talents do not lie in eloquently putting to words what I do all day. I loved the perspective the author shared.

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Linda Stone May 1, 2013 - 2:16 pm

Thank you! This looks like a great book to read!

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Britney May 1, 2013 - 2:19 pm

Sounds like a very interesting read!

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Stephanie May 1, 2013 - 2:19 pm

That was beautiful. Thank you for always being so positive about motherhood. The book sounds incredible.

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K - aka The Baker May 1, 2013 - 2:20 pm

I. have. No. Words. The post alone…thank you.

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Michelle May 1, 2013 - 2:29 pm

Sounds like a book I would love to read!!

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Kels May 1, 2013 - 2:29 pm

I love this. And I would love this book!! Isn't motherhood amazing??

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Heather @ Raising Memories Blog May 1, 2013 - 2:31 pm

Wow. I cried reading it. My heart & sould just felt connected with the words written. Thank you so much for sharing this!

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Ali P. May 1, 2013 - 2:36 pm

WOW! I often look here for inspiration to begin my days mothering my 4 souls. Thanks!

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Jodi May 1, 2013 - 2:37 pm

"What other career could claim as its end-product the elevation of a human soul?" Beautifully said, what an honor it is to get to be a mother.

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jarrleckie May 1, 2013 - 2:38 pm

These are reminders we need daily!

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Walker Family May 1, 2013 - 2:43 pm

Wow. Thank you- this was so great…I had been feeling a little overwhelmed with some of the "drudgery" of motherhood and the perfect lift I needed! I love being a mother!

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dresselfamily.blogspot.com May 1, 2013 - 2:52 pm

what a great giveaway!!
I loved that chapter 🙂

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Jessica Nelson May 1, 2013 - 2:54 pm

Love. 🙂 Thank you for always sharing such uplifting and perspective changing thoughts on motherhood. I know I'm not alone in gleaning a grander view of my role as a mother when I come to your blog. Not only do YOU have inspiring thoughts, but you open doors and windows to other people/ideas to partake from. Thank you! As always, I'd love a copy of the book you shared!

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Mitchell4 May 1, 2013 - 2:57 pm

This book sounds like a must read for all women. Thanks for sharing.

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Anonymous May 1, 2013 - 2:57 pm

oo. Me! As I am drowning and trying to lift myself spiritually right now…me!

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Meggan May 1, 2013 - 2:57 pm

Thanks for sharing!

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christy May 1, 2013 - 3:01 pm

What a great chapter. I hope I get the chance to read more.

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Megan May 1, 2013 - 3:03 pm

Thank you for sharing this!

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Team Hanni May 1, 2013 - 3:07 pm

Beautiful! So glad I got to read that this morning!

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Jaydee and Shaunda May 1, 2013 - 3:09 pm

Thank you for sharing.

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Tessa Brown May 1, 2013 - 3:11 pm

Wow. This could not have been read at a more perfect time for me. What a beautiful passage!

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Jarom & Corinne May 1, 2013 - 3:13 pm

love this, i want to win!

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Sarah May 1, 2013 - 3:15 pm

Beautifully written! I'd love to win it.

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Sarah or someone like her May 1, 2013 - 3:21 pm

This is simply beautiful and just what I needed this morning. Sometimes I lose perspective of why the work I am doing is such an important work. Thank you for sharing. What is the name of the book, by the way?

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-kim May 1, 2013 - 3:22 pm

i need this today. even if i don't win this giveaway, i will be forever grateful that i read your blog this morning. thank you.

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Jennifer May 1, 2013 - 3:28 pm

Thank you for always inspiring me to be the best mother I can be! I needed this reminder today, and would love to win the book!

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Heather May 1, 2013 - 3:32 pm

My husband is in school right now and some days are really hard with my two little ones. I would love to gain more inspiration from these women! Thank you for sharing this!

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NaDell Ransom May 1, 2013 - 3:36 pm

I can always use a good book to read! Thank you for your blog!

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Ashley May 1, 2013 - 3:36 pm

I need this. Thank you so much for sharing.

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Billy and Nic May 1, 2013 - 3:39 pm

Beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

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Jersh May 1, 2013 - 3:40 pm

I absolutely LOVED that! Would love a copy. =]

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Lisa May 1, 2013 - 3:40 pm

Absolutely beautiful! Would love a copy!!

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The Wilkins Family May 1, 2013 - 3:42 pm

Your post reminded me about Elder Oaks talk in October Conference. As a mother of 8- 5 biological and 3 adopted my life is full of every day chaos mixed with trying to heal the souls of children wounded by the harsh realities of this world. My goal is to somehow teach all 8 of them how much their Heavenly Father loves them and that will give their souls what they need to fly. I would love to read the rest of this book. We moms need to strengthen and help each other in this most important work.

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Nichole May 1, 2013 - 3:52 pm

Loved that chapter and insights into the painting. Such great inspiration. Thanks for the chance to win.

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kara jayne May 1, 2013 - 3:53 pm

those were some of the most beautiful words i have ever read. i'd love to read more!

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Rachel May 1, 2013 - 3:53 pm

Loved this so much. I, too, am intrigued. What a great book idea!

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WhatYouDeserve May 1, 2013 - 3:53 pm

I am a young married BYU student about to start a family. I would love to read the stories of how other women have taught their little ones to fly.

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Trisha Parry May 1, 2013 - 3:57 pm

I'm not a mom (yet) and still find that to be so beautiful. Thanks for sharing!

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Gayle Barney May 1, 2013 - 4:00 pm

Thank you so much for posting this! A wonderful way to think of all the things that we do each day, for others!
Love your column, your beautiful family, and your wisdom!
gbarney

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tessa May 1, 2013 - 4:00 pm

This is beautiful! Thank you for sharing!

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Alisha May 1, 2013 - 4:01 pm

Wonderful, thank you.

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Michelle May 1, 2013 - 4:07 pm

Wow, now I'm crying too. Thank you so much for sharing this, it's absolutely amazing.

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Julie Weiss May 1, 2013 - 4:16 pm

Amazing! I would love a copy. 🙂

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Shelly Cunningham May 1, 2013 - 4:17 pm

Sounds awesome! Can't wait to read it!

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Jessica May 1, 2013 - 4:17 pm

Wow, that was amazing, thanks for sharing. I would love to win a copy of the book.

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Kanien May 1, 2013 - 4:18 pm

Thank you so much for sharing. i hope I win!

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Nicole May 1, 2013 - 4:19 pm

I love that you shared this chapter. What an amazing view.

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Dawn May 1, 2013 - 4:21 pm

LOVE this and need to get a copy asap!!

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kristen May 1, 2013 - 4:30 pm

Thank you.

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Ima Foodie May 1, 2013 - 4:30 pm

Yes! I'd love a copy! I so needed to hear that today. What profound words…

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Kate May 1, 2013 - 4:31 pm

this was just what i needed today. we are having our third and for the last few weeks i've been worried about being enough, being the one that was the glue to us all…this definitely helped today…thanks for sharing!

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Unknown May 1, 2013 - 4:32 pm

As a grandmother – I want my daughters to feel this love to their calling as mothers. Beautiful and thought provoking.

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Katie Young May 1, 2013 - 4:33 pm

This is what I love about your blog and your desire to share your life. It helps. It truly helps! As I sat on the couch after putting my three ladies to sleep, I felt overwhelmed and drained. I needed to seriously regroup and find peace. I am trying unsuccessfully to teach my four year old how to do her chores, my six year old is going to all day school next year and it is breaking my heart, and my two year old is absolutely adorable, but am I giving her enough time and attention?? Plus another little lady will be entering our family at the end of the summer. I felt so inadequate but so determined to do better….but so TIRED!! Thank you for this post. That picture lifted my spirits and the thoughts shared were just what I needed today to add to my well. I have more to draw from now and I just wanted to thank you. Thank you for knowing how important this motherhood gig is and how hard it is, but most of all thank you for sharing you perfection and imperfection with all of us on the interweb. :)You are a rock star.

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Ben and Taryn May 1, 2013 - 4:33 pm

Beautiful! It spoke to me in so many ways and makes me want to read it over and over again.

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J-L-J-E May 1, 2013 - 4:34 pm

Hi! This comes from the book Choosing Motherhood: Stories of Successful Women Who Put Family First. Good luck with the give-away!

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Jill Friary May 1, 2013 - 4:40 pm

This would be a great Mother's Day gift!! Absolutely beautiful!

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CathyMA May 1, 2013 - 4:43 pm

Oh my goodness, I love what I just read there. It's put into words what we mothers know and feel.

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Tiffany May 1, 2013 - 4:45 pm

I've loved that picture since you showed it at my stake Relief Society conference. I'd love the book!! 🙂

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Sarah May 1, 2013 - 4:48 pm

I love this! I really want to read the rest of the book!

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jeanine May 1, 2013 - 4:49 pm

I would love a copy!

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Holly Decker May 1, 2013 - 4:52 pm

Pick me!

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The 5 Nelsons May 1, 2013 - 5:02 pm

This post was a perfect read for me on the heels of my learning circle discussion last night about embracing the individual strengths we each bring to the table as mothers to our own unique families. I too got teary eyed reading that chapter. I would love a copy of the book! 🙂

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Puttin' Down Roots May 1, 2013 - 5:03 pm

That is beautiful. Thank you

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Anjane' May 1, 2013 - 5:03 pm

Thank you for sharing this. As the wife of a husband in medical school, and a stay-at-home mother, I would love to hear the advice of other women who have experienced similar things. (I love reading your blog!)

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Unknown May 1, 2013 - 5:08 pm

Motherhood is amazing! Would love to read the other stories and share with daughters!
Thank you!

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Heidi Broberg May 1, 2013 - 5:08 pm

I KNOW I am not alone in my feelings on motherhood, but this would be a GREAT reminder to me DAILY to not take for granted this sacred gift and responsibility.

I am gonna go right now (get off the computer) and go hug and cuddle my baby.

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ChrisKatieKelly May 1, 2013 - 5:11 pm

Love your blog and the positive message that you have on motherhood. You always capture what I am feeling, and always find the greatest quotes from others! Thank you for the chance to win this amazing copy!

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OCCE May 1, 2013 - 5:18 pm

This essay is from the book "Choosing Motherhood" which was just released.

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Bridget May 1, 2013 - 5:18 pm

So beautiful! I needed to read that today for sure!

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Valerie May 1, 2013 - 5:20 pm

What a moving excerpt. I'd love to read the whole thing!

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The Watkins May 1, 2013 - 5:25 pm

Oh my goodness! I would love a copy! Thanks for sharing! {And not just today, but all of you lovely posts!}

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Ruth May 1, 2013 - 5:27 pm

I LOVE this explanation of the painting and motherhood. I recently became a new mom and know that it is surprising to many of my friends that my career choice is staying at home with my baby. I can truly say I have never worked so hard for such an important cause. Thank you for sharing this uplifting message. I needed it today.

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sannasue May 1, 2013 - 5:33 pm

We all need a reminder of the power of motherhood. This was beautiful.

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Theo Fam May 1, 2013 - 5:35 pm

Love this!

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Christy Elder May 1, 2013 - 5:40 pm

Great reminder of thepurpose of our time and role. Thank you for sharing.

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Sheri May 1, 2013 - 5:41 pm

I had two children while my husband went to dental school.
I loved this post and would love to read the rest of the book!

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Jennifer Kennedy May 1, 2013 - 5:42 pm

Thanks for sharing this wonderful chapter!! I hope I win so I can read the rest!

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K May 1, 2013 - 5:47 pm

Sounds like an awesome read!

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Tanya May 1, 2013 - 5:50 pm

I am quite emotional now. 🙂 But its a good cry. Thank you for sharing, and the chance at winning it!

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Build It,Sew It,Love It May 1, 2013 - 5:56 pm

I would love a copy! Thanks for doing a giveaway!

Jenn M

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S May 1, 2013 - 5:57 pm

Sounds like a wonderful read

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Jolee May 1, 2013 - 5:59 pm

As a brand new mom, I would love this book! Thanks for sharing this chapter and the painting.

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Gayla May 1, 2013 - 6:04 pm

Sounds like a great book, I'd love a copy!

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Suzie May 1, 2013 - 6:06 pm

I would love a copy. I love anything that encourages and inspires mothers!

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Trina Faulkner May 1, 2013 - 6:08 pm

Thank you for sharing! I would love to win the book. Do you know where I can get the picture?

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Heather H May 1, 2013 - 6:08 pm

Oh I hope the rest is as wonderful as that was!!

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katie May 1, 2013 - 6:09 pm

Oh my, that is so beautiful! I will carry those images and words with me always!! Thanks for the opportunity to win the whole book!

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Andy and Robyn May 1, 2013 - 6:09 pm

Sounds like a great book! 🙂

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Heather B May 1, 2013 - 6:11 pm

I would love to read more of this.

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Brittany Nicole May 1, 2013 - 6:16 pm

Wow. That's beautiful!

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Carrie Fox May 1, 2013 - 6:16 pm

Thank you for sharing! I would love to win a copy!!!

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Marisa May 1, 2013 - 6:17 pm

I would love to win a copy of this book! Thanks for the opportunity!

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Ashley May 1, 2013 - 6:20 pm

Thanks for sharing!! Need a good motherhood book to read as I sit and nurse all day (at least it feel like all day).

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Vanessa May 1, 2013 - 6:27 pm

I would love a copy!

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Caroline May 1, 2013 - 6:47 pm

I would love this book!

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Catherine Andrews May 1, 2013 - 6:51 pm

This sounds like a great book!

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inge May 1, 2013 - 6:52 pm

Very apt at the moment

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Heather May 1, 2013 - 6:53 pm

This sounds so unbelievably good, I know I won't be able to get it out of my mind until I read the whole book. Thank you for sharing this chapter.

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Katie and the Mr May 1, 2013 - 6:54 pm

I would love to win a copy! Thanks for the chance! Happy [early] Mother's Day!

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Camilla May 1, 2013 - 6:55 pm

Wow, I feel lighter just reading this first chapter. I would love to read the rest!

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Suzy J May 1, 2013 - 6:59 pm

Thanks for sharing! You inspire all the time and now I can't wait for a chance to win something you are reading! 😉

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The Monson Clan May 1, 2013 - 7:01 pm

I wouldn't mind a copy!

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Sherri May 1, 2013 - 7:04 pm

My fifth and last child will enter kindergarten next year and I am beginning to see how we mothers need to always remember why we are mothers. And I love reading real-life stories of others who have gone through it.

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Jenna Gines May 1, 2013 - 7:07 pm

What a beautiful, powerful story. Thank you for sharing it with us!

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theweckerlys May 1, 2013 - 7:08 pm

Would love to read this!

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Tammy May 1, 2013 - 7:09 pm

What an amazing reminder of the job we do every day… Thank you!

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Powers Family May 1, 2013 - 7:10 pm

I actually already have a copy of the book. It was given to me by my sister-in-law who is one of the authors of this wonderful book. And it truly is uplifting and inspiring. Every word, every chapter. Thank you for featuring it!

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Jennifer May 1, 2013 - 7:11 pm

Beautifully written! I would love to read the rest of this book.

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The Davis Family Three May 1, 2013 - 7:13 pm

I would love to read this book!

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Jershelly May 1, 2013 - 7:17 pm

I have been reading your blog for a while now, but have only commented once a long time ago. I am actually related to you (your dad is my mom's cousin) and I love reading your blog. I love the renewed perspective that it gives me of motherhood. I am a young mom (I have 2 boys – a 3 1/2 year old and a 14 month old.) I really enjoyed reading this chapter and I would love to read the rest of the book.

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Matt and Debbie May 1, 2013 - 7:19 pm

I would love to win a copy of this book. We put motherhood first while we both finished college, and then sent my husband to law school. We are expecting baby #6 the same month we celebrate our 10 year anniversary later this year. It probably sounds hard to others, but it has been the best thing for us, and the tender mercies are abundant.

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Claire Brucker May 1, 2013 - 7:21 pm

I NEEDED to hear this today! The book is now on my wish list… I know I'll need to hear it again.

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kambamjo May 1, 2013 - 7:22 pm

I love this! Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. You are an inspiration to me in so many ways. I love your "real"ness.

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alison May 1, 2013 - 7:23 pm

I'd love to win a copy–and I especially loved that last sentiment, who wouldn't want to be mother and teach these souls to fly?

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lindakredd May 1, 2013 - 7:27 pm

Joy school was my introduction to a joy filled life and joyful mothering. Your inspirational ideas learned from your parents continue to inspire as I now am a grandmother encouraging my children with their own families.
Thank you for sharing.

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Jessica May 1, 2013 - 7:32 pm

How beautiful and uplifting. I just had my 3rd baby boy and that tells my feelings so much better then I could ever put into words.

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catherine May 1, 2013 - 7:37 pm

I would love to win this book!

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Jessie May 1, 2013 - 7:38 pm

I love good books about motherhood!

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Mommy May 1, 2013 - 7:44 pm

This was written by a "woman who knows". I'd love to read the rest of the book. I love your blog and read it almost every day. This is the first time I have ever left a comment on the internet and I hope it works. I love your perspective as a fellow mommy. I also love photography, so you inspire there too. I finally have a great DSLR! My kids love Elle's videos. Thanks for sharing your family with us!

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Sarah May 1, 2013 - 7:51 pm

Love a copy to pass along to my sister for her very first Mother's Day (after trying to have kids for 10+ years and finally succeeding)

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Rachel May 1, 2013 - 7:52 pm

Loved that chapter! And that painting!

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J Loves K May 1, 2013 - 7:56 pm

That is just what I needed to read today. Thanks for sharing Shawni! I too was tearing up before the end. I would love to have a copy of the book for myself!

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The Schmidt Family May 1, 2013 - 7:59 pm

Thanks for the opportunity. I'd love to read it.

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Journeying Mother May 1, 2013 - 8:08 pm

I love reading books about motherhood! We recently had our 4th when our oldest was still 4. My husband has just graduated, so I feel like I can relate.

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MOMOF2 May 1, 2013 - 8:19 pm

Lovely writing! Would love to get a chance to read more……

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Laura May 1, 2013 - 8:20 pm

How beautiful! Sounds like a good read.

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Faust Family May 1, 2013 - 8:20 pm

I love reading books about Motherhood! I have 4 kids 4 and under and have had to answer the same question as this mother many times.

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Kristin May 1, 2013 - 8:21 pm

This is JUST what I needed today. Thank you for sharing. I'd love to read the entire book.

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Nick and Jessi May 1, 2013 - 8:23 pm

Loved reading this chapter today. Just what I needed, so thank you! I'd love to read more.

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Cheryl May 1, 2013 - 8:24 pm

What is the painting called and who is the artist?? I must have one 🙂

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The Shane and Danielle Matheson Family May 1, 2013 - 8:26 pm

I have been thinking about this a lot recently. My children are close to flying on their own. The lowering of the potential mission age left me feeling robbed of precious time I needed to prepare them for the world. It has been humbling and faith affirming to have to turn to my Heavenly Father and ask him to make up the difference. I thought I was praying for him to make up for my weakness, but instead I have seen him make my children stronger. It has been a most painful challenge as a mother, but a joy as well. I would love this book.

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Brittney Brady May 1, 2013 - 8:31 pm

I would love a copy of this book! so perfect for mothers day 🙂

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John and Sarah Thomas May 1, 2013 - 8:31 pm

After been given 3 children by 3 wonderful birth mothers and putting my life on the line for the next 2 I don't take motherhood lightly. It is a blessing and a miracle to be a mother.

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Stephanie May 1, 2013 - 8:41 pm

I would love this book for my 15 year old daugher who says she doesn't want to have children. Breaking my heart to hear that. Maybe this would inspire her to keep her mind open.
Also, do you know where to purchase the painting?

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The Congers May 1, 2013 - 8:42 pm

A great read, hope I win

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The Arizona Pickeral Family May 1, 2013 - 8:47 pm

I would love a copy!! Thanks for being an inspiration.

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Whitney May 1, 2013 - 8:48 pm

Sounds amazing. Thanks for sharing.

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Brynn May 1, 2013 - 8:52 pm

Would totally love this! Always love to be mommy inspired! (one of the reasons I follow your blog!:)

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Laura May 1, 2013 - 8:54 pm

Love this. I often stop when people ask why I want so many children, or how I manage them. I never know what to say. This week my oldest lost his first tooth, and it was amazing to see the delight on his face!

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LittleLinden May 1, 2013 - 9:05 pm

From what I have read, this is a book I NEED to read. I would love to read it & gain the right perspective as I mother my 3, still at home.

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jill May 1, 2013 - 9:09 pm

One of the most beautiful pieces of literature I have ever read. Thanks for sharing!

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Kelly May 1, 2013 - 9:13 pm

I'd love to read it! Thanks for the chance!

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Erin May 1, 2013 - 9:16 pm

I'm always up for a good read.

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Nicole Svendsen May 1, 2013 - 9:23 pm

love to read this book Shawni!

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Kristen May 1, 2013 - 9:36 pm

Sounds like a wonderful book! It's a perfect gift for Mother's Day coming up!

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Katie Reng May 1, 2013 - 9:42 pm

Oh, I would love to read that book. Motherhood is a difficult business to be in, with not a lot of support or understanding. I would love to read that book.

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Erinn May 1, 2013 - 9:43 pm

what a great chapter, i'm so glad you shared this today, thank you! i would love to read the rest of the book!

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The Oylers May 1, 2013 - 9:45 pm

This is exactly what I needed today! Thank you for sharing. You amaze and inspire me everyday. I hope to meet you in person one day.

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Katheryn May 1, 2013 - 9:57 pm

This was a beautiful chaper to read, and quite timely. My husband is leaving the country for two months for a job. I will stay here with our three children with no family or friends to help and will then fly with them to meet him in two months time. I've been feeling a bit anxious and ill prepared for this experience, but reading this has helped and given me a boost of confidence.

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The Gearys May 1, 2013 - 9:57 pm

I would love to have a copy! I am a mother of twin baby girls as of January and I would love to start off my motherhood on a strong foot!

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Kelsi Leavitt May 1, 2013 - 10:03 pm

I'd love to read this.

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Catherine May 1, 2013 - 10:06 pm

Thank you for sharing this, Shawni!

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D & H May 1, 2013 - 10:08 pm

I'd love to win!
snookums06 (at) gmail (dot) com

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Mimi May 1, 2013 - 10:13 pm

I would love to win! Thank you.

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Kelsey Griselda May 1, 2013 - 10:24 pm

That is such a beautiful story, and exactly what I needed to read this afternoon. Thank you!

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CodynStacey May 1, 2013 - 10:30 pm

Wow that was beautiful! I hate when people ask me what I "do" as a mother, and this makes me feel so blessed to hold that title! Thank you for sharing!

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Katie Richins May 1, 2013 - 10:31 pm

Uh…hellooooo lots of comments!

I loved this. Beautiful and sacred and true. I shared it on facebook. Thank you for sharing with us!

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My Writing On The Wall May 1, 2013 - 10:32 pm

Thank you for that!! I would love to win this book also!

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Carrie May 1, 2013 - 10:40 pm

Thank you for sharing, I would love to read the rest!

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Martie May 1, 2013 - 10:51 pm

The previous commenter (Katie Richins) is my baby sister, and I want so much for her to win this book. I have never known anyone to try as hard as she does to be truly GREAT mom.

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Camille Pedersen May 1, 2013 - 10:53 pm

I'm going to be sharing this with other mothers I know.. Loved it.

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Sydney Roberts May 1, 2013 - 10:59 pm

That was absolutely BEAUTIFUL. <3 The title of the book intrigues me. They call these amazing mothers successful, it reads that they chose motherhood and family over other righteous desires. This is something I've always struggled with, unfortunately. When I look into the future, I see myself impacting lives, and nations. But I know motherhood is more important than that, I just have trouble accepting that. I'd love to read this and have a reaffirming testimony that even if I don't impact nations, or save lives, I did the right thing by being a mother. That work is more important. <3

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Nancy May 1, 2013 - 11:04 pm

Sounds great!

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Kristie - My Sunshine and Rainbows May 1, 2013 - 11:21 pm

Wow! I LOVE this perspective of mothering…what a beautiful way to look at it. Imagine how such a thought could influence our parenting in all moments. Thank you for sharing!

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Amy May 1, 2013 - 11:22 pm

Thanks so much for sharing that. I really needed it 🙂

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Tracy May 1, 2013 - 11:34 pm

I would love to be entered to win this book, as I live in CT and I am surrounded by Yale! I would love to read the stories of other mothers who put their families first in a fast living "career first" environment.

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Becca May 1, 2013 - 11:57 pm

Would love a copy!!

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Janan May 2, 2013 - 12:13 am

Love it. I love when I hear the echo of words I didn't know how to say:)

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Alicia May 2, 2013 - 12:22 am

I read it all. It was beautiful!

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Anonymous May 2, 2013 - 12:33 am

Wow – I'd love to read and discuss with my bible study group! Thanks for sharing!

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Emily Nowling May 2, 2013 - 12:33 am

I loved this post. This book sounds so interesting!

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Anna Banana May 2, 2013 - 12:41 am

I keep looking at that painting today and trying to decide what I think of it's message. I am in the thick of it all right now, so this book sounds LOVELY. Thanks!

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Heather May 2, 2013 - 12:50 am

What an intriguing book! Having just sent my youngest to Kindergarten this year, I've been amazed by the impact I've felt of comments I receive from others combined with my own self-doubts. This book sounds perfect for my stage of life! Thanks for the chance to win!

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Chelsea Edgren May 2, 2013 - 12:58 am

I would love to win this! I especially need some inspiration right now in the realms of motherhood!

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mjones May 2, 2013 - 1:10 am

Currently raising 2 little girls (2 yrs old and a 9 month old). Motherhood is the most challenging and amazing job/gift I have!! Would love to read this book!

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Elizabeth May 2, 2013 - 1:19 am

Would love to read this!

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Leah May 2, 2013 - 1:26 am

What a beautiful essay on motherhood. Love it! Thanks for sharing it.

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Jennifer Gomez May 2, 2013 - 1:29 am

This was beautiful! Would love to read all of the book!

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Ty, Steph, Bris, Big T May 2, 2013 - 1:38 am

Beautiful! I would love to read this one! And on another note…starting my kids "journals" to give them on their wedding day tonight! Do you still have yours?

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Ashley A. May 2, 2013 - 1:49 am

I would love a copy!! That was so beautiful.

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Shelley Hendrickson May 2, 2013 - 2:14 am

I just finished a book and am ready for another one…..pick me!

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About me May 2, 2013 - 2:26 am

I love, love that piece of art! That sounds like an amazing book- I would love to win a copy!

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Amy May 2, 2013 - 2:32 am

This was exactly what I needed. Thank you so much for sharing.

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Danielle May 2, 2013 - 3:02 am

Sounds amazing! Would love to read more.

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CC May 2, 2013 - 3:09 am

Always love your posts. It was great to read this one in particular today. Thanks for sharing.

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Lora May 2, 2013 - 3:11 am

That was beautifully written – I would love to read more!

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Dasha May 2, 2013 - 3:29 am

Pick me, pick me! That was beautiful and now I want that painting. Thank you sharing.

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Kelli W May 2, 2013 - 3:46 am

Beautiful story! Thanks so much or sharing 🙂

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Nate and Melinda May 2, 2013 - 3:51 am

We all need a little help teaching our little souls to fly.

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Karin May 2, 2013 - 3:54 am

So uplifting. Just what I needed to recharge my ever draining battery. Thank you

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Chelsie Campbell May 2, 2013 - 4:01 am

Wow!! Needed this today! Beautifully written. Would love a copy!

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Kierstin May 2, 2013 - 4:04 am

I would love one!! kierstinlaws@hotmail.com

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Brooke May 2, 2013 - 4:15 am

I added this book to my amazon wishlist not 5 minutes before I read this post. Would love to win it!

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KIM {POPPY SEED PROJECTS} May 2, 2013 - 4:15 am

What a powerful painting and story. Thank you for sharing, that is a reminder I needed to hear!

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Lydia Davis May 2, 2013 - 4:16 am

Beautiful and a great reminder on a long day. Thank you for sharing!

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Andrea May 2, 2013 - 4:18 am

Wow! I needed to read this tonight! Thanks for sharing!

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Ammanda May 2, 2013 - 4:24 am

Thanks for sharing this.

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Ty * April May 2, 2013 - 4:43 am

Just what I could use right now! Would love to read it.

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Jessica May 2, 2013 - 4:45 am

What a beautiful, touching story. I'd love to read the rest!

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Lori May 2, 2013 - 4:49 am

I SOO want to be the kind of mother that helps my children soar. Thank you.

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Wyoming Steenbakkers May 2, 2013 - 5:02 am

I love what this book has to say! I would love to read the entire book. Thanks for sharing such great stuff–always!

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Emily Dixon May 2, 2013 - 5:22 am

Wow just beautiful! In the craziness of each day I sometimes forget how beautiful motherhood is.

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Allison Hill May 2, 2013 - 5:49 am

I would love to win the copy. Thanks!

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The Munro Family May 2, 2013 - 7:31 am

I would LOVE to read this book. It is exactly what I need right now.

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Melissa Philippsen May 2, 2013 - 9:46 am

Wow, I recently became a mother and this touches my soul. I recently struggled with whether or not to go back to work. The ending of the chapter, reminding me yet again that the most important work I can do is at home, is like God whispering in my ear. Thanks for posting this!

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melissamarchant May 2, 2013 - 10:24 am

This sounds wonderful! I would love to read more! Thank you for posting such an inspiring message.

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sevenalstons May 2, 2013 - 10:55 am

I would love to read more!

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Sarah Richmond May 2, 2013 - 11:00 am

Thanks for the give away!! I'd love a copy of that book. I love being a mother!!

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Jes May 2, 2013 - 11:03 am

oh, how I needed to read this this morning! Thank you for sharing, a healthy dose of perspective indeed!

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Susanna May 2, 2013 - 11:48 am

Motherhood is the hardest job I'll ever do but I do it proudly. The road has been a winding one, taking me places I never imagined, yet each day teaches me a little more about myself and about the world. I am blessed.

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Rebecca May 2, 2013 - 12:00 pm

Goosebumps! I totally hope I win!

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Gwen May 2, 2013 - 12:09 pm

I would love a copy

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jonna May 2, 2013 - 12:12 pm

need to put some of these keeper quotes around me as beautifully articulated reminders…and then i'm going to go "elevate a few human souls"! while all the while they seem "oblivious to what their mother did for [them]". yes. i'd love both the book AND the painting!

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Miya May 2, 2013 - 1:12 pm

Wow that little article is inspiring. I have read it several times in the last 24 hours. Hope the rest of the book is just as uplifting!

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alhsjej May 2, 2013 - 1:18 pm

Looks intriguing!I would love a copy

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Petra May 2, 2013 - 1:19 pm

Amazing chapter! I would love to read the rest of the book.

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Freja May 2, 2013 - 1:25 pm

This looks lovely .. I can't wait to be a mother 🙂

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anna May 2, 2013 - 1:49 pm

Beautiful, Shawni. Thank you for sharing this chapter with us. I think about what a sweet experience it was for your Mom to share this with you and your sisters. She has come full circle from teaching her children to fly and I am sure it was a few sacred moments for her to share with all of you that day.

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Snort May 2, 2013 - 2:14 pm

I'd love to read this!

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Ladybug143 May 2, 2013 - 2:27 pm

Thank you for sharing. Even if I don't win that book is on my list. I have been on a quest lately, a quest for happiness. I know that it comes from the Savior and from being a wife and mother, but finding concrete things has been troubling me. This book seems like one of those that will shed some light on my troubled soul. Hope to read it soon.

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KT May 2, 2013 - 2:27 pm

I'm definitely sharing this post! I'd love to win a copy to read and share!

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Lori May 2, 2013 - 2:27 pm

A message that I definitely needed to hear! Thank you for sharing!

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Jenny May 2, 2013 - 2:34 pm

Wow! That was truly inspiring! I would definitely love to read more!

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Dave and Stephanie May 2, 2013 - 2:46 pm

thank you for sharing! it was just what i needed to read this morning! i would love to read the book.

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Jen May 2, 2013 - 2:50 pm

I loved that chapter. Thank you for sharing!

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crozyb May 2, 2013 - 2:51 pm

Thank you for sharing. Can't wait to read more.

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Casey and McKelle May 2, 2013 - 2:52 pm

I loved this chapter, it was beautiful. I love that we have great examples of women all around us to follow. I would love to win this book. Thank you!

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Cami Reschke May 2, 2013 - 3:45 pm

It's always refreshing to hear from other mothers who love motherhood instead of wanting to escape it. Thanks for letting us share this this with you! I'd love to read more!

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Dasilva May 2, 2013 - 3:50 pm

Beautiful! Can't wait to read the rest of th book. Thanks!

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Kerri May 2, 2013 - 3:51 pm

Thanks so much for that imagery and boost! I'd love a copy of the book.

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Tyler and Ariana May 2, 2013 - 3:52 pm

I love how at first she can't give an answer. I'd love to read those stories, especially as I'm in my own mothering adventure while my husband completes his graduate education. -Ariana

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sistyugler May 2, 2013 - 3:56 pm

Just what I needed today. Thanks!

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Anonymous May 2, 2013 - 4:10 pm

Thanks for sharing this thought provoking chapter! Totally what I needed today!!!

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Cindy May 2, 2013 - 4:35 pm

What a wonderful post leading into Mother's Day. My husband accepted a principal position this past year and I stay home with our 5 year old daughter and 2.5 year old boy/girl twins. Neither of us were prepared for the long hours and almost every night and weekend commitments he would have. As this first year comes to a close, we both have a new appreciation for my role as stay-at-home parent. I was so blessed to be the kid's constant this transition year and to make sure their lives were filled with love, learning, faith, and fun each day. It wasn't sunshine and rainbows everyday, but excerpts like this remind me that even on the hard days, my role as mother and teacher is the MOST important "job" I will ever have.

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Jaimee May 2, 2013 - 4:38 pm

I'd love to win a copy! Sounds like a beautiful book.

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Renae K May 2, 2013 - 4:48 pm

I just wept my way through that entry. I didn't realize how my soul needed that today. thank you!

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Lani May 2, 2013 - 5:04 pm

Amazing. I definitely want to read this book.

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Shaylee Ann May 2, 2013 - 5:25 pm

I would absolutely love a copy of this book! Thank you for sharing this beautiful essay. This young and inexperienced Mother-to-be has been greatly inspired. Thank you. 🙂

Shaylee Ann, Mother at Heart

zion.at.heart@gmail.com

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HT May 2, 2013 - 5:34 pm

This was an amazing read! I'm adding the book to my list.

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Bunderson Family May 2, 2013 - 6:00 pm

Ahhh…that was beautiful and I would love to read the whole book!
jennybunderson at yahoo dot com

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Lori May 2, 2013 - 6:11 pm

I've been wanting to get my hands on a copy of this book for awhile, thanks for the giveaway.

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Gina May 2, 2013 - 6:19 pm

Sounds like an amazing book:)

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Laura May 2, 2013 - 6:20 pm

I wish I could write like this author. I feel the same way, but don't have the gift of words that she does to share my tender feelings and firm & unrelenting belief in motherhood. Thanks for sharing.

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Ax May 2, 2013 - 6:29 pm

Can you tell me where your sister got that paining? My wife would love a print of it. Thanks!

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Robyn May 2, 2013 - 6:52 pm

beautiful. thanks for sharing.

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Andrea May 2, 2013 - 6:55 pm

That was lovely! I would love to read the entire book:)

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Rachel May 2, 2013 - 6:57 pm

Thank you for sharing that, Wow!

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Tabatha & Michael Stimpson May 2, 2013 - 7:05 pm

I've never seen that painting so thank you for sharing! I absolutely love reading about your passion for motherhood! i crave reading your words…. especially when my love of motherhood isnt always there and especially as passionatly as yours.I also love reading it monthly because it reminds me to find that passion…pray for that passion. so thank you…for your words of passion on motherhood! oh how i would love to be a fly on the walls you and your mother and sisters surround yourself in… i wish i had those talks with my loved ones…until then i'll keep reading yours… so thank you!

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Aurelia May 2, 2013 - 7:27 pm

Thank you so much for sharing this.
It was just what I needed to hear today.

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Andrea May 2, 2013 - 7:30 pm

Lovely! i would love a chance to read the whole book 🙂

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Leigh May 2, 2013 - 7:47 pm

So well written and uplifting. A good reminder on a day that seems filled with 'drudgery'.

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Tori May 2, 2013 - 8:10 pm

What a lovely gift this would be for any woman… especially those who are and aspire to be Mothers!!!

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Sam and Carmin May 2, 2013 - 8:27 pm

I could use a book of inspiring mothers who offer insight into principled parenting!

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Jonah and Aja May 2, 2013 - 8:30 pm

go for it.

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Jensen family May 2, 2013 - 8:35 pm

Sounds like a great Mother's Day gift!

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Kirsten May 2, 2013 - 8:50 pm

Just beautiful and inspiring! Just what we need to hear. Thanks for the giveaway!

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Dan and Bek May 2, 2013 - 9:07 pm

This lifted my soul. Thank you for sharing it.

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Skylar and Lauren May 2, 2013 - 9:09 pm

Thanks for posting this. I used to be the sister in this story. I would watch moms with kids clawing their hair, and clothes and wonder how I could ever be happy doing that with my life…Then I met and married my sweetheart and two and half kids later, I understand what the mom in this book knows. I'll shamefully admit, I still have my moments of exasperation where I revert back to my 'sister' mentality, but over all I know that I'm where I'm supposed to be, and doing what I was born to do. It is a noble calling, and thanks for sharing the thick and thin of things to help us all feel like we have some company on our crazy days! I appreciate it! =)(and I'd love to read the rest of this book!)

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Sharon May 2, 2013 - 9:13 pm

Love the title of the painting, "Teach THESE Souls to Fly".Thanks for sharing it.

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Stacey Mortensen May 2, 2013 - 9:15 pm

Totally loved every bit of this chapter…can't wait for the book! Thanks for always sharing such amazing and uplifting thoughts with us.

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stephschmidt May 2, 2013 - 9:55 pm

wow! I don't know that any single book (other than scripture) has touched my heart as this chapter has. Just I needed to read today – thank you! I'd love a chance to read the rest of it 🙂

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April May 2, 2013 - 10:17 pm

What a wonderful chapter!

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jody May 2, 2013 - 10:23 pm

Would love to have this book In my library!

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The Lowry's May 2, 2013 - 10:35 pm

Anything about being a mother hits home because I am one and always striving to be better. I would love to win.

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Erika May 3, 2013 - 12:06 am

I would love to read it!!!

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jenica May 3, 2013 - 12:15 am

good to remember there is holiness in the midst of chaos! would love to read a copy of the book!

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jenica May 3, 2013 - 12:16 am

need to remember there is holiness among the chaos!

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Betsy May 3, 2013 - 12:25 am

I love your blog Shawni. It always brightens my day, and I would love to read the rest of this book!

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Julianne May 3, 2013 - 1:05 am

The last 2 weeks I've been wondering the exact same thing that the sister in the story did…"WHY am I a mother? Is there nothing more than cleaning up spills, breaking up fights, teaching a whining child how to ride a scooter, trying my hardest not to yell (and then yelling anyway), etc. etc. etc."

I finally am starting to see the light, and the light is more clearly visible again after reading this blog post. I know I have known the purpose of motherhood before, and somewhere in the last while, it's become obscured to me. But I'm ready and needing to become alive in that purpose once more.

Thanks for this very thoughtful post. It is wonderful.

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Tiffany Brooks May 3, 2013 - 1:08 am

Thank you so much for sharing this!!! I feel like this post was directly written for me. Been struggling with the "why's" of motherhood :/. Off to order my copy.

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Anonymous May 3, 2013 - 1:22 am

You are a wonderful mother. Thank you for your example.

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taggteam May 3, 2013 - 2:02 am

What an awesome outlook, and how important to keep it ever present in all the hard times. Thanks for sharing this!

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Morris May 3, 2013 - 2:21 am

This post couldn't have come at a better time. I loved reading this. Thank you. I would love to read more of this book.

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Emily May 3, 2013 - 2:26 am

I would love this! Thank you!

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Jane Newman May 3, 2013 - 3:00 am

Sounds like the kind of book I need to get me through the crazy days of 4 boys under 7! Thanks!

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Anna Swan May 3, 2013 - 3:29 am

Whether or not I win this, I think I need to hear what this book has to say. I'm a mom to a 18 month old and haven't been converted to the greatness of motherhood. The past 2 months I have finally had my eyes open to the realization that I need to change my perspective and work on enjoying motherhood. I've been reading a lot and slowly my eyes are opening and my heart softening. I need to keep reading more encouragement like this. Thank you.

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Jennifer May 3, 2013 - 3:44 am

I love the ever so needed inspiration to be better mothers.

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The Childs Family May 3, 2013 - 3:45 am

Would love it!

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Cassie May 3, 2013 - 3:53 am

Oh, I needed this today! Would love to read the rest of the book.

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BriAnne May 3, 2013 - 3:55 am

I needed that snippet today, thank you. I'd love to read the rest!

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Can May 3, 2013 - 4:38 am

I really needed to read this today! Thanks so much for sharing! I would love to read more.

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BreAnne Hess May 3, 2013 - 4:41 am

I would love a copy!!!!!

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Jill May 3, 2013 - 5:43 am

I need that book.

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Vixie May 3, 2013 - 6:01 am

Sounds inspiring! I would love to read it!

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SaraB May 3, 2013 - 7:57 am

Thanks for the inspiration! Could always use more!

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Sarah May 3, 2013 - 10:41 am

Beautiful!! Wiping my own tears away now. 🙂 Has definitely renewed my sense of urgency and devotion to the cause of mothering my 3 little ones! Thank you for sharing! I'd love a copy of the book, of course! "Who WOULDN'T?"! ~Sarah (using my husband's account)

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Caroline May 3, 2013 - 10:56 am

I loved that! Thanks for sharing!

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Trista May 3, 2013 - 11:30 am

I would love to read this!

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Lindsey Cazier May 3, 2013 - 12:10 pm

What a fantastic chapter. This was exactly the what I needed to read. It can be hard some days to remember how truly important motherhood can be.

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sarih May 3, 2013 - 12:26 pm

That book sounds amazing. I would love to read the rest.

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Susannah May 3, 2013 - 1:17 pm

I'd love a copy of that book. I'm going through a bit of a mothering struggle, and the chapter you shared helped me see thing differently.
Thanks!

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mwoodall May 3, 2013 - 2:33 pm

I would love to read the rest of the book! So inspiring! I too have asked my friends "why is it worth it to be a mother" and their responses were much the same. I feel very scared to be a mother but I know it will be worth the hard work!

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Debbie Davis May 3, 2013 - 2:55 pm

I need a copy of this book as I'm speaking in church on Mother's Day 🙂

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Valerie Housley May 3, 2013 - 3:13 pm

Motherhood truly is a sacred and divine calling, and I know I could draw strength from reading this book. Thank you for sharing!

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Valerie Housley May 3, 2013 - 3:15 pm

Motherhood is a sacred and divine calling and I know I would draw strength from reading this as the mother of three young children. Thank you for sharing!

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Riikka May 3, 2013 - 3:32 pm

oh beautiful thought! i got really inspired by this book chapter and the painting. gave me more love for my family!

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LKH May 3, 2013 - 4:01 pm

Powerful words.

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Becky May 3, 2013 - 5:53 pm

Thanks for sharing! I love reading your blog and would enjoy having a new book to read as well.

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Marisa May 3, 2013 - 6:14 pm

That was so beautifully written and I would love a copy of the book so that I can read the rest of it!

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Dawn May 3, 2013 - 6:33 pm

I just quit my full-time job to "put my family first". I would love to read more of this book!

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Carrie May 3, 2013 - 6:42 pm

Love this! Helps reaffirm why I am a mom. 🙂

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Fand May 3, 2013 - 9:49 pm

Looks like a great book!

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Jared + Carly Reid May 3, 2013 - 9:59 pm

i would love to win this book. i can't wait to be a mother someday. my husband and i have been married for 2 years and i am sooo ready to be a mom. it is the greatest calling on earth besides being a wife. that picture is so beautiful and i loved how that woman described motherhood so eloquently!

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Kristen May 3, 2013 - 10:01 pm

That was a very powerful and beautiful chapter. I would love to have a copy of the whole book! Happy Mother's Day to you!

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Kelly May 4, 2013 - 12:45 am

I'd love a copy! Thanks for sharing!

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LauraB May 4, 2013 - 1:22 am

Would love to give this to my daughter-in-law for Mother's Day!

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Kylene May 4, 2013 - 2:16 am

Hope I'm not too late! I'd love to read the rest of it.

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Royce and Annika May 4, 2013 - 2:21 am

Thank you for sharing this beautiful message!

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Cheflamb May 4, 2013 - 2:35 am

Your posts always inspire me in areas of my life that I need to be inspired!! What a beautiful chapter!

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Andrea May 4, 2013 - 3:11 am

i would love a chance to read this whole book. this was lovely! Thankyou!

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Christy Kinder May 4, 2013 - 4:56 am

Thanks for sharing. This keeps things in perspective.

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MelissaR May 5, 2013 - 6:04 am

This was so very very inspiring. Thank you so much for sharing!

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Julie T May 9, 2013 - 12:16 am

Thanks so much for deciding to share this and for the opportunity for us to share the feelings! 🙂

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Kestrel June 26, 2013 - 6:04 am

I just discovered this post. It is absolutely wonderful. Thank you so much for sharing.

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Brittany October 17, 2014 - 3:49 pm

Where did you find a print of "Teach These Souls to Fly"? I would like to buy one for my sister. Thank you!

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