Growing up we memorized quotes.

Lots and lots of quotes.

If we memorized them, we could earn more “points” toward getting our money doubled for our allowance at the end of the week (learn more about the money system here). And because I was a “saver” boy you can bet I wanted that money doubled. So I slaved away to learn those quotes.

Man alive am I ever glad.

They come to my mind all the time and they are powerful.

So after much contemplation on what in the world to put in the alcove at the top of my stairs (I’m very particular about what I put on my walls as I explained here) I came across this chalkboard at Pottery Barn I HAD to have. (It helped that my dear sis-in-law worked there so I could get myself a hefty discount on it…thanks Kara!)

You see, I envisioned it filled with those quotes I memorized growing up, and new ones too.

And each time we climb the stairs we can think about something uplifting and empowering.

Each week I write something new up there.

And the kids have declared that they should have “turns” too.
Now on to start getting the kids to memorize these babies…

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  1. love the quote idea on the chalkboard. I have a chalkboard too that I put little quotes on, but forget sometimes to change it each week, but I like the idea of the kids coming up with there own ideas…gonna need to try that.

  2. We have a plate that we use to write on–it sits atop our fridge and we use a dry-erase marker and an easel so it sits up…
    even visitors to the house write on it! Great ideas!

  3. I love that it is at the top of the stairs! You almost HAVE to read it. Love that! Course, I am addicted to your blog and pretty much love everything you do. (That sounded creepy…I promise I'm not a stalker. Just a Nonny who loves a *sense of family* like yours!)

  4. Love, Love, Love this idea!! Those are great quotes. Thanks for sharing another one of your great ideas.

    Hope all is well. I haven't seen you forever.

  5. I LOVE this. I am a huge quote person. I frequently write a quote for myself on the white board in the kitchen, and glance at it while doing dishes. But I like the idea of getting the whole family involved.

    I think quotes are a powerful way to refocus our attention to where we want it to be. Quotes help me separate myself from what's popular and easy and align myself with what's right and fulfilling. Thanks for the great post!

  6. I think if they see them up there, they will just memorize them naturally! repitition. that's awesome! plus if a quote really "speaks" to them, they will naturally want it memorized! this is an awesome idea!!! LOVE IT!
    love the photos too!

  7. I love this and have a few quotes on paper that I put on the board in our kitchen. I want to change the pantry door to a chalkboard door and this would be the perfect place for us to do it. I'm with you about only having meaningful items on your wall because that is what the children see every day and will leave impressions. I have some good stories about that which I should share on my blog. Thanks for keeping us all motivated. Love you girl!






  9. Hi Shawni! It was good to see you too, I'm glad you came to say hi. As always, love your pictures, love your blog. Let's get a good book to read!

  10. Love this idea! totally spewing now because we had a chalkboard just like this and recently threw it out…I couldn't find anyway to use it and that would have been great…should have held onto it a little longer. Love your blog and hope you can make it to Australia some time, hope you stop over in Queensland if you make it here!

  11. I love reading your blog, I came across it after hearing you speak at Time out for Women in Ogden in February. I was wondering if you could tell me where your friend got your family tree template. I am the family history "guru" in my family and would love to get one. You can email me at

  12. What a great idea, I will be using my chalkboard for just that from now on! I just ran across your blog and I love it! You have such a beautiful family! Keep up the GREAT work!


  13. I love this!

    But mostly I want to say THANK YOU!!! My husband and I have always agreed on major parenting decisions, except for one – allowance. Our kids are still small (newborn, 3 and almost 5), but we've had many discussions about it. His concern has been that if we give them an allowance without requiring anything of them, they will feel entitled to it and be spoiled. My concern was that if we made them work for money, they would think they deserved to get paid for chores and things that they should do just because. Well, your system is PERFECT – it addresses both of your concerns. We have three years to implement it, but after we read your explanation, we LOVED it!

  14. LOVE IT Shawnsee! Gotta get going on those great quote books we found. Thanks for the reminder. It's amazing how just a little thought can change your whole day!

  15. great idea.
    I also love the pictures up the stairs and have wanted to do something similar.
    I'm wondering where you got the family tree kit found in your link. Love it!

  16. I am really late on the commenting for your "dog" letter…but I have to leave my advice! I have a "goldendoodle"—he is half poodle, half golden retriever…and let me tell you—he is the best breed of dog in the world!! My sister has had probably every kind of breed of dog and researched these dogs for years and finally bought one, then ended up breeding them because she loved their temperaments so much. They are wonderful with children, extremely smart, and super easy to train! Plus they are so dang cute—you will die if you look up their picture on the internet. Just check them out–you can find a calm one–I actually researched and bought ours after my 4th baby was 2 months old! And I am pregnant with my 5th and still adore my dog!! Just look them up for fun and you will see what I mean. Thanks for your good blogsite—it makes me feel so good to read and I love feeling the spirit so strongly. You are such a good example of what a wonderful mother can be!!

  17. Love this idea!

    My all time favorite quote is:

    By faith in God you can be attuned to the Infinite and by power and wisdom obtained from your Heavenly Father harness the powers of the universe to serve you in your hour of need in the solution of problems too great for your human strength or intelligence (Harold B Lee)

    Have fun!

  18. I also have a chalkboard to write quotes. My little brother committed suicide, a year ago in October, so when my parents came to visit I would write quotes for them to look at on a daily basis . . . "A journey of a thousand miles starts with one small step" became our theme as a family, struggling with grief. I envision the walls in my house being covered with quotes when it's all said and done. I love that you are inspired by quotes!

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