My name is Kelly.
I named this blog Love Well because I need the daily reminder. I have mommy brain and soul amnesia, and I know myself: If I do not purposefully focus on the things I name important, the urgent distracts me. And my goal is to climb into bed each night knowing, if I accomplished nothing else today, at least I loved well.
To love my kids well
I have four: Natalie (12), Connor (10), Teyla (6) and Kieran (4), and they are the biggest delights of my life. Growing up, I never wanted to be a mom. I wanted to make a difference in the world, do something influential. I wanted to spend my days writing and interviewing history makers and telling stories. So I began a career in journalism, and I worked as a newspaper reporter and a TV news producer, and I loved my job. But somewhere along the way, my adrenaline-fueled lifestyle began to wear me thin, and I wondered if I would regret not having babies. I wondered if mothers don't change the world too. So I walked away from my career and became a stay-at-home mom, and I discovered, to my utter amazement, that mothers are the most influential creatures on the planet. Loving my kids well, watching them grow, is the greatest adventure. And it's more work than producing the 11PM news during May sweeps.
To love my husband well
Corey and I have been married 21 years. Our relationship has remade us; it sometimes feel like we've done this whole thing backwards. We have survived seasons of separateness and numbness, seasons of shattering and despair. We know the only reason we are still together - and what's more, loving well - is because of grace. We are like a kintsugi bowl - more beautiful for being broken. Corey works as the chief marketing offer for one of the larger nonprofits in the U.S., and I’m proud to be his partner.
To love my home well
I live in Minnesota, and I spent most of my growing up years here, and this is home to me, the lakes and the woods and the falling snowflakes in January and the falling leaves in October. But I spent most of my early adult years in San Diego, and that is home to me too, the surf pounding cold and the hills rolling like so many waves toward the shore, the eucalyptus trees standing silver and the wildflowers growing like confetti. I suspect I will always be torn between my two homes, but I don't want that to keep me from appreciating where I am today. So I often write about why I enjoy living in the Upper Midwest. It might be what I think is cool about the cold or my memories of the all-important Minnesota State Fair or my emerging green thumb. The diverse beauty in our world is an endless source of fascination to me.
To love God well
I grew up a good girl, self-rightenousness secretly fueling my actions, pride at the root of my Christian faith. But these days, I live as a woman who knows it is grace alone. A Pharisee turned Jesus disciple. That might be the biggest miracle of all. I used to think my good decisions pleased God. Now I believe, love is all I have.
To love myself and my story well
That is where this blog finds its footing. The more I know myself, the more I can genuinely love. I know I’m an unflagging optimist. I always choose to laugh instead of cry. I love to cook, because making something tangible with my hands restores my soul, and feeding other people feeds me. I am an ENFP, the most introverted of extroverts, and my goal is achieved when you are laughing and thinking at the same time. Writing is my way of life – poems on church bulletins, secrets in well-preserved journals, stories for the newspaper and packages for the news. This blog is my scrapbook, my memory box and my art. My place to pause and reflect: Have I Loved Well?