God's Girl

Finding the extraordinary in the ordinary

Perfectly Placed

My daughter recently auditioned for the first time.

She wanted a part in a summer musical camp.

She had her heart set on the one of the two lead characters

We are new in town and just getting to know people here.

I wasn’t sure people who didn’t know her would give her a chance.

I practiced with her a bit.

She couldn’t wait.

She just knew she would get the part.

How do you prepare a child who has her heart set on something that she might not get it?

I didn’t want to get her hopes up, but I also wanted to balance that with letting her know that I believed in her ability to do well.

We climbed in the car to head to the audition.

My bubbly, blond girl was smiling from ear to ear.

“Honey, would it be okay if I pray with you about the audition?”

“Sure, Mom.”, she quickly replied.

“Dear Father,
Thank you for my sweet girl. She is a gift to me and to this world. Father, I ask that you place her right where she should be. If that’s the lead, that’s okay with us, but if you have something else in mind, we trust that you will perfectly place her. You have something special planned for her in this experience. Help her to give of her talents and serve you and others well. Amen”

When I picked her up from auditions, I asked her how it went.

I guess I asked a few too many questions.

“Come on, Mom, it’s not like it’s American Idol!
It was fun. We read our parts in groups.”

Later that evening, the phone rang.

The call she had been waiting for had come.

She got her first part.

Not the one she expected.

She will play another part.

Sassy Swag Saturn.

Somehow that fits her just right.

My bouncy girl playing a planet that never stops moving.

Yep, that’s her.

She can’t wait to start.

Do I have the same attitude when I don’t get what I expect?

I’m perfectly placed, too.

I must remember that.

It’s tough when I have prayed about something specific and it doesn’t happen the way I want it to or it just doesn’t happen at all!

I remember walking with a friend one day.

She suddenly stopped, looked me in the eye and said, “You know what I love about you?

Not one thing you planned in your life has turned out the way you have planned it, but you are full of joy anyway.”

I hadn’t realized that until she said it.

Nothing had gone the way I planned.


Isn’t life about making goals and achieving them?

If you asked me what I wanted in my life when I was younger, my answers would have been filled with “nevers”.

Almost every one of those “nevers” has happened.

The strange thing about my plans versus God’s plans for me, is that I’ve never been happier.

He has always given me what’s best even when it looked scary or unpleasant.

When I said, “No”, He said “Yes”.

I am learning to never say never.

I am learning to follow this God of the unexpected.

Because of Him, because of this life He has given me, I’m finding joy in the unexpected everyday.

A little added bonus to the blog today:

I found this when I was looking up pictures for Saturn. Children bring us so much joy!

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Sending the Kids to College/Working Mom: An Interview with Barbara Newell


Calling all Moms with kids in college (or those who soon will be)!

Calling all working moms!

Today’s special edition of Magnificent Moms is just for YOU!

In fact, ALL moms can’t we learn from each other even if we are going through different things?

So, this is for YOU, too!


Let’s get started!

I would like to welcome Barbara Newell to our Magnificent Moms series today.

I’m honored to know this woman and can’t wait to learn from her.


Barbara tell us a little about yourself.

I’ve been married for twenty-four years, with two wonderful girls I just sent off to college.

I’m empty nesting it.

I am a family practice MD, currently not working because of complications from knee surgery.

If you would like to respond to me in April’s comment section below  just call me Barb.  (I do think Dr. Barb is cute, like a term of endearment. I’m still young enough that I’ve been Barb longer than Dr. Barb.)


What has been the biggest challenge for you as a working mom?

I always wanted to be the “Kool-Aid” mom.

The biggest challenge being a working mom was not being there for every event in school.

I’m thankful that I was able to be there for some.


Barb, could you please tell us a couple of favorite memories you have?

One of the most memorable events for one of the girls was the regional science fair.

She had won at her school, so we had to travel to the regionals.

Looking at both girls’ reaction to the school, I knew this was the day they decided that college was for them.

Since the girls were second graders, they wouldn’t let the parents stay on the floor, so we were directed to the balcony, which was at least two or three planets away.

She kept peeking between the science boards.

Then a man approached her, and we couldn’t see her anymore…when we saw him rise and leave, my heart was in my throat…then between the science boards, we saw the prettiest smile and a big thumbs up!

Later we learned she had won second place in her division.


Then there was the time the younger one decided she wanted to try out for the college cheer squad.

We all went.

After a long day, she came out of the gym with the slumped walk and just a straight face.

I thought, Lord, this is going to be a long drive home.

When she got in the car, she was silent for too long, and then finally blurted out “I made it.”

I felt like I was holding my breath the whole time.


I love those times when our kids fake us out to give us good news! Being a mom definitely has its rewards.

What has been the most rewarding thing for you as a working mom?

The most rewarding thing about being a working mom was overhearing them speak with pride and wonder about what it is I do.

They would help in the office wherever they could.

I guess I had my share of time with them after all!


What is one thing you wish someone would have told you about being a working mom?

How much I would miss the little things during their formative years.


If you were sitting across from a working mom or a mother who is considering working, what would you tell her?

Count the cost.

Kids grow up so fast, you don’t want to miss anything, so if you have to use a sick day or vacation day to go on a farm field trip, do it.

You won’t regret it.


What would you say to a mother about to send her child to college?

You don’t have to talk to them everyday to know they are okay, even though you may want to.

When you do talk with them, don’t over analyze every phrase after you get off the phone.

Do prepare and keep a reserve for the times that they wait too long to tell you they have only five dollars to their name.

Make sure they have a checking account/debit card. Track them to avoid those way-too-enticing college-student credit cards that they will be tempted to get “so we won’t bother you.”


What did you tell your girls as you sent them off to college?

Respect and fear God, respect yourself, command respect from others.

Ask yourself if what you are about to do would pass the God test, the parent test, your moral test, and the Madea test!

You have worked hard preparing for this day, so I told my girls, “Go do you. You are unique, and there is no need for you to imitate anyone.”

You have Christ in your hearts.

Let them see and imitate Him.


What is one thing you would like a parent of college bound kids to know?

If you have given them a solid Christ-filled foundation, they may stray briefly and lightly, but THEY WILL NOT DEPART FROM IT.

They may think they are grown and don’t need you, but admit it or not, they will soon realize they do need you.

I learned from another parent that the older they get the smarter, you get.

The sweetest, saddest thing that has happened so far was when both girls at different times asked if we wanted them to come “here” for first break.

I was confused at first, and then it hit me…now that they are “grown,” they didn’t have a home.

I let them know that not only did I want them and need them to come, this was still their home, and they were grounded for the first twenty-four hours after getting home…just because.

I told them I loved them, hung up, and cried myself silly!




Now it’s your turn Mamas of college bound kids and working Mamas!

What is something that you have learned the hard way?

What do you wish someone had told you?

What has been the most rewarding thing?

Take a moment to share in the comment section below.


Truth is, none of us are experts at this parent thing, but we can share what we have learned and encourage others along the way.

We want to hear from you!

Comment below and share this with another mom via Facebook, or any other way you would like.

Thanks for joining us to today and click “follow” to make sure you stay connected to this special series.

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Magnificent Moms in May




Do you have questions about motherhood?

Are you a working mom, mother of boys, stay at home mom, or mother of a large family?
Do you have a special needs child or perhaps a child you are sending off to college?

Do you have a child who is entering the dicey waters of the teen years?

Are you a mom in ministry?

We will be discussing these topics and many more in our May series.

Do you find it difficult at times to be in this season of parenting?

Do you wish you had someone wise, who has been there?

Someone who just makes you feel as if you aren’t alone in this journey?

Do you wish you could talk to someone and get some real answers?


It’s hard to come by.

It seems that many want to spout their opinions, but do not provide any real encouragement.

My friends, you won’t find that judgement here.

I want my blog to be a judgement free zone.

No friendly fire here!

What you will find is real answers from real moms.

Moms who have worn knees from anxious nights praying and compassionate hearts because they know it’s not easy.

If you feel as if you are just treading water or even sinking as a mom, please understand that you aren’t alone.

Can I toss you a life preserver or two as you try your best to keep your head above water?

The goal is not just to survive motherhood.

The goal is one word.

One simple word.


The goal of this series is to help you thrive and to help you raise children who thrive.

That’s what magnificent Moms in May is all about…Encouragement…plain and simple.

A little wisdom passed on from one  mom who has been there to another.

A hand held out to hold onto yours for a moment and a voice that says, “I’ve been there, sister! There’s light at the end of that tunnel.”

I will interview many mothers this month from many backgrounds.

I feature a different mother every few days.

Think of it as a panel of moms at your fingertips.

What questions do you have?

What topics would you like to see discussed?

Obviously, I can’t cover all topics related to motherhood in May, nor do I intend to, but I would love to have your input so this series can be truly helpful, encouraging and inspirational to as many moms as possible.

Comment below and let me know what’s on your mind.

Sending you much love from one dog paddler to another,
God’s Girl