Happy Easter


Getting ready to set your Easter table? I love when family gathers to feast, pray and celebrate. Something special happens. Everything important feels….closer. These moments knit us together. Traditions are carried and birthed.

We had dinner at my sisters last night and her table was too gorgeous not to share. So here are some photo highlights to inspire your table.




She never disappoints, this stunning table welcomed us when we arrived. It makes me feel special when a beautiful table has been set for me.




Simple tulips bunches in mason jars (I seriously heart tulips).  Hand-painted gold polka-dot eggs….I could die. A simple hem-stitched table runner was the perfect backdrop for all these touches.




Even her little one contributed hand-picked dandelions, which look adorable in these teeny glass vases.  I need to find out where she scored these. My little one is always bringing me love from our weedy lawn.




Chalk painted eggs and milk glass. I’m obsessed with milk glass. It is so beautiful. And these eggs, what a cute idea. That is my penmanship if you are judging…




She blended the traditional meaning of Easter, with the fun adapted whimsy of today beautifully. 




Treats for the kiddies. My incredibly talented friend over that The Whisk created these adorable bunny cookies for me. Her cookies are perfection. Her designs are genius. ALMOST too pretty to eat… You need to follow this girl on Instagram. Her creations are stunning.


PicMonkey Collage


We broke bread and said a blessing together.

This tradition comes from my dear friend Idelette, she bakes this gorgeous Challah bread every Friday night for her family. They speak blessings over one another and light candles.

Last night my sister and her husband were guided through this tradition for the first time.

I loved passed on traditions.

Have a wonderful Easter. Celebrate, feast, and keep Him close in your heart.

Parenting Through My Mistakes

Owen Parenting


“How is your school going Mom?”

A sincere question, but I cringed. We were having our morning chat during the twenty minute drive to school. I looked at the picturesque farms with their  rolling landscapes.  Still beautiful, even on this rainy morning.

I felt privileged. I live a life I couldn’t have imagined growing up.

Eight months ago, Owen’s question might have brought on tears, but these are the moments that remind me, God is always working. There are always miracles happening.

Me: I had to quit Owen.

Owen: Oh, how come?

Two years ago I wrote an essay for SheLoves Magazine. It was a big, scary story for me to tell, my insecurity of being uneducated and finding myself doing life with  deep thinkers, writers and scholars.

After the piece published I felt empowered and signed up for an online course to complete my high school English. Then I had to explain to Owen I had dropped out of high school.  It was the first time I was revealing a piece of my past I wasn’t proud of.

He was surprised to find out his mom had dropped out of  high school. More surprised than I had thought he would be. My husband and I talk a lot about the importance of education with him, it was hard for him to comprehend I was not.

I started the course, but the work load, a toddler, and a few of life’s curve balls had me in way over my head.

I put my books away, but whenever I came across them, they would remind of my  failure.

To make matters worse, what I did learn during my brief period of study showed me how little I actually knew. So I stopped writing. I became embarrassed about my poorly constructed essays floating in cyberspace.

I gave up my dream.

I allowed fear to paralyze me.

Although I was uneducated and as ridiculous as the dream seemed, I felt called to write.

It’s hard go through life with a dream dying inside of you.

I worried about letting Owen know I had quit. The example it could give to my impressionable little boy. Was I teaching him how to be l like me?

I have raised my kids with my story chasing me, dreading the day that I may stand in judgement before them.

I have tried to carve out a normal life from an abnormal past. My childhood had some really tough years and probably more pain than a lifetime should hold.

I went into adulthood damaged and hurting. I made a lot of mistakes, a lot of bad choices. But God rescued me.

I knew that I would need to find a way to live with my past, with the things I could never be proud of.

Because even when I had reconciled with God and my sins had been erased in heaven, my earthly truth still haunted me.

I wondered how much I would have to tell Owen. If he would understand.

Which sin will be too much too forgive?

As I relive my past, will I feel defeated with each passing memory?

My failure at school was small, but now having failed again I wondered if I could ever really leave that part of me behind.

I imagined  losing the respect of my little boy, who  I have loved since the day I brought  him into this world.

Owen is approaching the age where the smoke and mirrors disappear and our kids see our mistakes. They notice our flaws. They see our humanity.

Last year a random conversation started up with a Facebook acquaintance. I had just started my new blog, and was trying to overcome  the voices that said I shouldn’t and couldn’t.  I was still living under “failure”.

I don’t even know how it began, but in those brief exchanges, I learned that at fifty years old, this woman had returned to school and earned a couple of degrees.

It was one of those God timed, conversations.

As I read her words, I felt tears rolling down my cheeks. The healing kind, that tell your soul you are going to be okay.

 I still have a lifetime.

Me: Owen, I had to stop school  for now, my life is busy with having your little brother at home, I don’t think it was the best timing.

Owen: Yeah, that makes sense. (pauses for thought)  Mom? Maybe you should do it when he is five?

 Me: That would be a much better age. But I am still writing Owen. I have a mentor to help me, so I am doing what I love. Do you know what a mentor is Owen?

 Owen: Ummm, sort of.

 Me: It would be like if a really good hockey player took you under his wing and taught you some new skills.  It is when we personally pass on knowledge to someone to help them grow and better themselves.“

 Owen: Oh. It’s like Jesus with his disciples!

I grin from ear to ear.

There is one thing that Owen has that I didn’t while growing up. It’s the name that says everything is going to be alright. It holds the promise of grace,  new beginnings and eternal endings.


Did I mention Owen is a genius?


Have you struggled here friends?

I wonder if it will be life and circumstances that will show us what to tell our kids?

Would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

This is a safe place, nasty comments are sent to the trash!



Daniela Schwartz © 2013. All Rights Reserved.