May 142015

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Feb 202015

1000 voices are gathering together to promote goodness, kindness, compassion and support for others through this campaign. I'm honored to be part of it and read on to learn the single most pure way to support your friends in this life!I’m writing this post as part of the #1000Speak campaign, in which 1000 voices will be joining together today, February 20, 2015, to speak about compassion, kindness, and support for others in this world. Learn more about the campaign here and check in on some of the amazing words that are being shared to promote goodness.

I’m honored to have this chance to share my thoughts on how we can most purely offer loving compassion to those God has put in our lives!


Sometimes (pretty often, to be honest), I look at my life and feel stymied by the weight of things. Of the busyness, the endless tasks, the remembering to send my son’s library book back on the proper day and review the new spelling words the optimal number of times each week.

It can be heavy. It can be groan-inducing. And while all the responsibilities come from a place of blessing, they don’t leave a whole lot leftover. Limited resources and the demands of young kids always get right of first refusal.

Being a true and real support to our friends is such a beautiful gift. Here's how do it with compassion and true grace. Friendship matters--do it the right way!

So you offer help in the corners–watching a friend’s kids when she has a doctor’s appointment, taking a meal to a neighbor, make sixteen notes to yourself to send a text to someone who needs some encouragement on an important day. It’s not ever pretty or smooth; the casserole you drop off will be slightly burned, your house will be a circus show with the extra kids vs. a calm, nurturing haven, and you will really, really wish you could be there to hug your friend in person instead of just sending a text.

But you will try because you care.

Yet more important than any of this tangible help, the one thing you can offer is a safe landing spot. You see, what we all really need in a friend is someone who gets it, who loves us as we are. Who takes our panicked random calls when we discover a weird rash on our ankle, who lets us cry when our son can’t learn to hold his pencil the right way in school, who will tell you that “no, you do not look like a ginormous cow”–for the sixth time in the same week (not that I speak from experience).

All we really want is a welcome place to fall, a haven in the midst of our floundering and full days.

Being a true and real support to our friends is such a beautiful gift. Here's how do it with compassion and true grace. Friendship matters--do it the right way!

For this reason, difficulties aren’t to be cursed. Nothing can better school us in genuine compassion than challenges, struggles, moments when we are pretty sure we are going to have to lock ourselves in a padded room vs. spending another minute with our very-three three year old…

It’s this living of such an imperfect life full of stuff that so perfectly equips us to be there for others. Our own tricky spots teach us firsthand how to best offer support and how to be real.  We can be a welcome hand for friends to grasp when things get tough because we get it, we’ve been there.

It may be ages before we can present gorgeous casseroles or have supportive phone conversations sans children screaming interruptions, but in the meantime, we can be a safe spot for others to land–one entirely filled with empathetic compassion.

And that is the true blessing.


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Second image credit:, image ID:2786756, copyright:Pakhnyushchyy

Nov 052014

I am always, always scared of taking big leaps, but I've learned this is the smartest thing we can do in this world. Be open to new things and go for it!It was typical Tuesday night. I was desperately trying to crank out some overdue blog work while hollering at my husband to just give up on the chicken nuggets and “get the kids in the bath already!”. Then my phone rang, and it was Stephanie Giese of Binkies and Briefcases, “Hey, do you want to go down to Texas and be on Glenn Beck with me?”

For those of you who don’t know Stephanie, here’s the short story: SHE IS ROCKING THE WORLD. Her recent post about the astounding inappropriateness of girls’ clothing on the mass market went beyond viral. While she’s busy managing the response to this, she’s also running full speed ahead with the Blog U 2015 conference (the second annual installment of the insanely successful conference she founded last summer), and oh, raising three young children.

So basically, when the scary-fantastic Stephanie asks, you say yes.

Glenn Beck wanted us to come on his show and discuss appropriate Halloween costumes from a mom’s POV. I could do this??

Forget the chicken nuggets; I called out to my husband, “Hey babe, how do you feel about me popping down to Texas?”

We live in Pennsylvania.

Fast forward three weeks and a lot of finagling, and I found myself on a plane. And then in a green room. Like, a legit green room–you’ll excuse me while I pee myself a bit here.

And while I was hanging out in the very green room, forcing myself not to on-air nervous puke, post-show pal-ing it up with Glenn Beck and his very sweet daughter (who thanked me for doing the show because it “meant a lot to her dad”) and then madly snatching souvenirs for my kiddos in the airport while we dashed to our plane, I had some important realizations.

I have people. Not as in a “my people will call your people” situation, but as in, I’m not alone in this world. When Steph first asked, I thought, “yeah, right–I could never actually pull this off”. And then my husband offered to take a day off work, my mother-in-law drove out to help with the kids for a night, and my friend jumped at my plea to pick my kids up from school. When I asked my dad for airport transport, he simply told me give him the times–of course he would do it. Another friend was willing to cover a few-hour gap in childcare if need be and yet another friend quickly started helping me research Glenn Beck and reviewing talking points.  Hundreds of people on Facebook took the time to weigh in and help me sort out attire dilemnas–the most import element of the entire trip, obviously. The support and encouragement of others as I prepped for and then went on this wild-to-me adventure blew me away. And that people actually took the time to tune into the show and then encourage me afterwards? My eyes welled with tears as I checked my phone that night.

I know this life can all too often feel lonely, but sometimes it’s when you most need people that you realize you aren’t alone. Through this trip, I felt caught. I felt blessed. I felt grateful.

This life can be so mundane...fantasizing about how the other half lives can be so fun...really fun! Hop over for a minute with me!

Jumping is ALWAYS boss. I was the kid in college who had to take Ativan before any presentation so I didn’t faint away in panic of public speaking. Needless to say, this appearance on Glenn Beck was NOT “right up my alley”. It was very far removed from my alley, several lanes over, in fact. That and despite the nerves that left me literally shaking a few days prior and post-show, I will never, ever regret that I did it. Truth told? The green room, private hotel room and car service were pretty sweet perks that just make me feel boss. I’m okay with that.

I know how hard it is to manage this life. But listen, carving out a few minutes for friendship is one thing you will never, ever regret.  Do it now! Trust me ;)Real friendships are good. Steph and I have done a lot of huge life experiences together–cranked out a blog conference, thrown book signings, hosted a ladies’ night out, family-timed it up on the Fourth of July, and endlessly supported each other online. She wows me, of which I’ve made no secret.

The thing that you may not know is that she’s terrified of flying.  And I’m not uber-touchy-feely. I love greeting with hugs and kisses, but beyond this, not so much…Steph and I held hands on every take-off (and with lay-overs, there were several). As soon as the cameras cut on the show, she walked across the stage and I squeezed her hand for dear life. I needed support–emotionally and so I didn’t fall over in my heels. We prayed together before we went on set, and I endlessly told her how proud I was of her for accomplishing all that she has. We shared a messy steak sub in the airport and ignored the crumbs on each other’s faces. When I froze on camera, I will never, ever forget her mouthing “Isaac’s costume” from across the set to cue my talking points and help encourage me.

And none of it felt weird.  At 35, I’m not sure I was supposed to meet a genuine real-for-life friend that I can totally be myself around. But I did. And I don’t have the words to express the realness of this blessing.

I am also realizing the value of full-on supporting someone else in this world. I am so proud of what Steph is doing, and the opportunity to be there for her and help her promote her message? A gift in its truest form.

Regardless of what happens or doesn’t happen going forth with this whole blogging business, I will forever be grateful for the time I hung out in the green room with Steph–and for all the too-important lessons I learned while we were there.

To Texas, Glenn Beck, and crazy life experiences you were never supposed to have.

You can catch a longer clip of the 10/28/14 show and read about it here, but please pay the $1 and subscribe to 30 days of The Blaze TV so you can watch the whole show–I say way more semi-intelligent things in the second half so I don’t look quite as vapid. xo 😉

Nov 032014

Marriage is tough business and couples tend to...clash. For all the times things get a little dicey in your marriage, snatch up this book--with all it's laughs and encouragement to love your spouse, it's exactly what you need to add some perspective to your marriage!

My husband is a fabulous man. He’s full of ideas and plans.

Some of these plans are better than others.

Some of these plans include spending our date night at Home Depot shopping for refrigerators.

I’ve written before about how we don’t always see eye to eye on how we spend holidays.

About our varying definitions of relaxation (spoiler alert: his involves horseshoe pits and a lot of 2x4s).

And about how I love him despite his insistence on chewing milkshakes.

But when I recently found myself casing out freezer drawers with a dude named Chuck on a Friday night while my husband trolled the tool aisle, I realized we had reached a whole new level.

The kind of level that begs to be shared in the new book, Clash of the Couples, out today.

Crystal Ponti, Editor of the book, describes Clash of the Couples as “a new anthology featuring a collection of absurd lovers’ quarrels and relationship spats. Couples just starting their journeys and those who have been together ‘forever’ will relate to dozens of short stories running the “one said, the other said” gamut—from disagreements over furniture, to who gets the last beer, to where to store the placenta (yes, you read that right)”.

I’m honored to be included in this book, and it’s been a delight to work with Ponti, full of enthusiasm and dedication for this anthology. I love the book’s approach to recognizing the love and respect couples can have for each other while still taking time out to chuckle about the ridiculousness that ensues when sharing your life with someone.

When my husband decided to swing by the tool store for date night, let's just say it was one of the more interesting evenings of our marriage. Head over and read how we are totally rocking couple time!

The other authors in this book are funny.  And since we could all use a laugh break, take a minute out now from your own crazy day to snatch up a copy–and maybe buy a few extra to stockpile as holiday gifts. Your funny bone will thank you, and a shot of giggles is good for any marriage.

I’m also giving away two copies of the book here! As long as you are 18 or older and live in the continental U.S., you are eligible to win! Just leave a comment below by 5am ET on 11/10/14 and tell me you’d like a copy and why you want it–or tell me a funny couple story you have, because we all like those 😉

In the meantime, thanks for supporting this new book, and all of my writing efforts. Having you follow along with me here, and on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram means the world.  Thank you, friends!


Snag a copy of Clash of the Couples for only $0.99! What a deal! Treat for yourself or early holiday gift!

*****11/14/14 update: Congrats to winners Shannon C. and Ashley!*****

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Second image credit:, ID:54521437, copyright:SimpleFoto

Aug 012014

Don't let the weeds blow all overI know, I know.  It’s summer.  The days are jam-packed with fun, and will soon to be peppered with a little of the “Holy crap! School is starting!” frenzy. It’s a busy time, and I’m right there with you, trust me.  But listen, don’t let the weeds completely blow over your blog before fall hits.

Let me help you keep the momentum going and get your hard work promoted!  For the entire month of August, I am offering 50% off ALL ad spaces.  Yeah, that means that you can get some advertising for only $7.50. Use promo code AUGUST to get the half-off discount. 

Hop over to my ad page, check it out, sign up and put me to work.We’ll get the word out together and get rid of those nasty weeds!

Jul 282014

Afternoon at the library book signing @meredithspidelEarlier this month, I got to hang out at our local library as part of their “Meet the Author” series to share my work in I Just Want to Pee Alone, I Just Want to Be Alone, and You Have Lipstick on Your Teeth.  I have mentioned before how much I love the library, so just being there was treat, but this afternoon in particular was a very special kind of cool.

Did I sell a ton of books?  Not even close.

Did I care? Not in the least.

This afternoon wasn’t about book sales, it was about having an experience.  One of those life experiences you’re not quite sure about, so you have to shove yourself pretty hard to do.  One of those life experiences God uses to surprise you.  One of those life experiences that was so worth it.

What made it so great were the people.  All the people my life got to trip over that afternoon.

The event started at 1pm and kicked off with a bang.  By 1:15, an elderly man had taken my business card, I gave directions to the bathroom, and I met two very nice teenage boys, to whom I had to gently explain that I wasn’t sure my mom humor anthologies would appeal to their demographic.  I could have been wrong about this–you never know.

Conveniently set up right beside the restroom for  easy bathroom direction-giving.

Conveniently set up right beside the restroom for
easy bathroom direction-giving.

A sweet grandma wanted to purchase a book for her daughter, but only had $4 in change with her.  So she left, saying she was off to get more cash and would be back.  I didn’t think I’d ever see her again.  She returned a half hour later, bought the book, and thanked me for writing about the stuff no one talked about during her generation. Lump in throat.

I was thrilled to run into an old neighbor of mine who I hadn’t seen in years.  We chatted up how much both our lives had changed, and it was so affirming to see that her can-do spirit that left me admiring her in the past still guides her today.

I met a kind local author, Dan DalMonte, who filled me in on some nearby writing groups.  And we made plans to (as soon as I can get my crap together), review each other’s books.

My husband took a break from work to come say “Go you!” as my personal cheerleader, and this made me blush.

Erika, you are Encourager of the Year!

Erika, you are Encourager of the Year!

A dear friend brought her boys, a hug, and all of the positive encouragement she has endlessly poured over my writing career.  This meant more than she knows; she means more than she knows.

I made a new friend in a fellow blogger, Carrie of Normal Level of Crazy.  She’s a true delight and I’m counting down the days until we get to meet up again at the dinner date we planned.

One older gentleman asked me if it was still possible for him to get a spot in one of the mom anthologies. Sure, a tad tricky to gracefully field this one, but I applaud his interest and pursuit.  And bonus for the chance to bone up on my skills at navigating “more unique” conversations.

I posted about my afternoon on Facebook and the outpouring of friends willing to share in my smile made me a bit teary.

I talked to more writers, past, current and aspiring.  We all encouraged each other.  It felt like a tribe.  For that afternoon, we were a tribe.

I wasn’t sure I wanted to go to the library, to put myself out there.  It felt scary, and it was.  But if I hadn’t gone, I would have lost all the love, encouragement, laughs and connections that filled those 1-4pm hours.  In comparison, simply staying home that afternoon would have been a very empty choice.

I guess it goes to show you get more out of life if you leap.  And next time God wants to hand me a blessing, I’m just going to take it.


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Jun 182014

Oftentimes there is a lot of emphatic raging related to the blog around these parts:

“What the heck is this blogging good for?”

“I need clean underwear!”

“What the heck is “The Twitter” anyway?”

It might be helpful to note that 98% of the time I am the one raging.  I am the one confused, confused as to why I am doing this, confused as to how to best do it, and confused as to whether if it is even worth doing it to begin with.

Time presses on, and usually I’m only increasingly confused as it does, but a few things have become a little clearer.  It’s astounding how truths can come to light while shaving or changing sheets–it’s nature’s way of rewarding us for tending to the picky stuff.

Recently, I’ve been generally rolling around in my post-BlogU high (what an incredible experience!) and enjoying a few very cool blog-related realizations:

1) I am capable as a human being.  This transcends into directing people where to carry heavy boxes at a conference (albeit not always directing them to the right place.  Apologies once again to several BlogU staff for the senseless hauling of door prizes across campus and back) to being able to create and write this blog in the first place.  The thing is, it never hurts to believe in yourself.  And make it happen, despite the poopy diapers and sippy cup-related needs.

2) Despite my horrid control-freak planner self, income happens, regardless of the panic I pour into fussing about it.  Blogging is such a weird business.  By nature, I would love to know exactly how much I am making each month and carefully budget my pennies out.  It doesn’t work this way.  Some months, the ad revenue and sponsored posts are friendly; other months, not so much.  There is very little to nothing I can do to control this.  I try to look at it as a bonus for being able to fund our grocery budget when it pays out and then engage in a lot of soothing self-talk during slow months.

3) I am tired.  I love my blog.  I love the people I’ve met through it even more.  My children are still real and will age at the normal human rate.  Some day, this blog will end.  My children will not.  They are my sole legacy on this earth and I will never, ever regret pouring more into them than anything else on this earth.  Also, I like to sleep.

Because Retro Prom is a thing

Because Retro Prom is a thing

4) It is okay to insist on Urban Decay eyeliner.  I am blessed to be besties with the very cool Stephanie Giese of Binkies and Briefcases, the founder and CEO of BlogU.  We work together, we support each other, and then I make her wait for me while I put on my make-up.  When she loaded my van with a suitcase 1/3 the size of my own monstrous beast of a packing vessel, I could have felt scared.  Very scared. Instead, I realized that she one of those lovely minimalist people.  I, on the other hand, don’t travel without several cases of make-up.  But here’s the surprise: people will often accept you for who you are.  Excess eyeliner or not.

5.) I am not totally dumb about technology.  I am mostly dumb.  I will still endlessly struggle over html.  I will probably call my husband in tears most times I try to figure something new out.  But…I kind of get it.  For me, “kind of” is huge.  Turns out, I can be smarter than I think.  So go ahead and push yourself–the flipside of pushing is that you might end up feeling incredibly boss.

6.) Working is a beast; I kind of love it.  The sticky wicket about my job situation is that I have one, but don’t have childcare, at least not regularly.  By the time I figure I can remedy this situation, my children will be in school all day anyway.  In the meantime, Mommy panics a lot, uses a lot of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood and a lot of lollipop bribes.  Am I the best mom?  Not even close.  Am I the perfectly on the ball?  Never.  Do I love my kids and try the best I can to manage each and every single day?  Always.

7.) Love those around you. The Keynote address was titled, “Collegues, not Competition”, and this couldn’t have been said better.  Life is far too short for smallness in any form.  Support and care for those who God puts in your life to the best of your ability. Jen of People I Want to Punch in the Throat has discussed how “a rising tide lifts all the boats”.  Such a smart, such a perfect approach.

I have no idea what tomorrow holds for me to learn.  But for now?  These are the truths that are supporting me.  That, plus all of you.  Thanks for hanging with me through all of this, my friends.

Because sometimes growth takes the form of cupcakes...

Because sometimes growth takes the form of cupcakes…

Jun 062014

Blog U conference @theblogu @meredithspidelAs I write this, I am headed off for BlogU.  In my world, BIG THING.  I have spent months upon months sorting out details like gluten-free alcohol, roommate requests and appropriate-colored badge stickers with Stephanie Giese, Blog U Founder, and the other conference staff.  It has been an honor, and one I don’t take lightly.

There are many, many things I love about BlogU, but what resonates the most is that this conference was created as a way to build genuine community and friendships within the blogging world.  And that means a lot, a whole lot, to me.

If you had asked me 2 yrs. ago me if online friendships could be real, I would have scoffed.  But it’s funny how God uses the circumstances of your life to change you.  Today, there is very little in my life that could be more real than my blogosphere gals.

I love the women in my tribe that I have built.  You see, blogging is my business, it’s my 9-5 that falls within almost every corner of my 24/7.  When I sink with a post gone wrong or an impossible WordPress plug-in that breaks my day, these women are my go-to.  When I feel like sobbing over some inane circumstance that is too silly to share IRL, I lean on my online backbone.

Blogging has become my job, my comfort zone, my hobby, my passion, and the one talent I’ve developed on this earth. I kind of love it–a lot.

I’m grateful, so very, for the love, the friendship, and the realness blogging has opened up to me.  And to spend a whole weekend celebrating this?  DREAM COME TRUE.

As always, I will see you on the flip side, my friends.  The flip side this time will be replete with a lot more know-how about the craft I love and tons of pics with ladies rocking fab glamour dresses at Retro Prom Night (I know.  I KNOW) having the time of our lives as we build the friendships of our lives.

I can’t wait.

May 152014

I’m excited to introduce a new friend to you today, readers. You may have noticed Fluent in Blonde bringing a dash of beauty to my sidebar recently. Ashton is the blogger behind the Blonde, and it’s been too fun getting to know her and her new blog.  The thing about Ashton is that she is as witty as she is gorgeous.

I’ll admit–I look at those long flowing golden locks and am slightly terrified that this gal is too-perfect to be real, but trust me, she’s as down to earth as they come.

She describes herself as “mom-blonde”.  Ashton explains, “That’s a tricky way of saying my post-baby personal hygiene is leaving something to be desired, and I can’t say I care. My husband is really great about complimenting me 5x a day when I wash my hair or shave my legs as positive reinforcement for my desirable behavior. His standards have really come down. I shouldn’t be entertained by that.”

Educated as an English teacher, Ashton now lives in Las Vegas, where she falls more and more in love with her seven months old little guy every day.  She does hair by day (and she’s obviously got mad skills–check out her styling!), and is now delving into the world of blogging.  She pursues all of this in the corners while she works hard at figuring out what the heck this momhood gig is all about.  Ashton notes that while everyone had loads of labor horror stories to share while she was pregnant, but “no one told me anything about the mommy part! I’m trying to figure out my new role while juggling work…and leaky boobs”.

Beautiful Mama, beautiful baby... Even the little guy is craving The Blonde!

Beautiful Mama, beautiful baby…
Even the little guy is craving The Blonde!

I love that Ashton is real and funny. But what really gets me is that she enjoys things like clothing, home decor, hair, make-up, jewelry…style.  In the past year or so, these things have become more important to me too.  Important in the way that when I pay attention to them I feel a little more human.  And  little less of like the Mom Who Has Completely Given Up (but will never surrender her yoga pants because they are too comfortable).

I think it’s fantastic that Ashton delights in beauty and pretty things, and includes this in her writing.  And that she does it all with the perfect touch of fun.  In her recent post about a trip to Home Goods, she kills me with,  “HomeGoods is a type of personal sanctuary that I hold in high regards, paralleled only by select Marshall’s.”  Select…love it!

She then wrote a whole post about what the heck moms are supposed to wear to the pool–because what the heck are moms supposed to wear to the pool with their kids??

And I think my favorite post (so far, because you know there is way more brilliance to come), “Death By Pink, and Other Bad Decisions“. You simply have to read the post to fully appreciate it. I don’t know what I love more–that she has pink hair, that she dyed her parents’ dog pink, or that she documented the entire process with pictures and witty commentary.

I cannot get over this post.  I don’t want to. Also, I now really, really want to meet and kick back with Ashton and hang with her and the pink dog in person over a few laughs.

The cool news is that she will be back next month to share a post of hers here and let you get to know her even better.  Stay tuned! But for now, readers, go love on Ashton, send the dog a sympathy card, and join me in welcoming this delightful new voice to the blogosphere!


Fluent in Blonde has claimed this month’s Mom of the Year Award, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to share my genuine enchantment with Ashton with all of you.  Want to me help spread the word about you own fantastic blog?  Snatch up a spot now–using May’s BOGO promo, when you purchase a spot (any spot), you will be sent a code to get another month for free!  Get two months for yourself or share with a friend!

May 112014

There are very few things in this world that make me feel as boss as blogging.

It was never something that was planned.  It just happened.  But it quickly became a saving grace as my daughter grew from newborn to infant, as my mother died, and as my son found himself in a body cast.  And then it didn’t stop. I found a voice, I met some of the best friends of my life through the blogosphere, and I continue to daily challenge myself to new things–vlogging? Why not? Plan a blog conference? Sure. Put on a pair of printed leggings and snap a pic of myself for a sponsored post?  I may have to get back to you on that one…


So when I saw that Cristi of Motherhood Unadorned had made t-shirts specifically for bloggers, I was elated as my fingers madly fumbled over the keyboard in a dash for my Paypal account.  When I understood that Cristi designed them herself and she was doing it as a fundraiser for suicide prevention, I was in awe of her.  She’s sharing her story below, and friends, settle in because it’s a neat one.

And then go buy one.  For yourself, if you’re a blogger, as your own Mother’s Day presentbecause let’s be honest, do the hubs and kids ever really get it right?  Or order one for a blogger you know.  Worried they already have one?  Don’t be.   As I told Cristi, I want it in every style and would proudly wear this shirt daily.

You see, I am a blogger.  This is me.  This is what I do. And this Mother’s Day, I’m taking a moment to just be proud of that.  Proud of myself.  I know my mom is smiling down on this one too.

After all blogger is a pretty darn boss thing for a mom to be.

Blogger Tee Pride @meredithspidel


In Cristi’s words:

In 2010, I lost a dear lifelong friend to suicide. It really rocked my world, particularly because I have mental illness myself and had been suicidal in the past. I started blogging that year to sort of write out my feelings and grieve, but very quickly it took on a life of its own. At that time I also started raising funds for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Back then I admit, I really didn’t know much about the foundation. It was yet again a way for me to “do something” with my grief.

But since then I’ve learned so much more. I started volunteering and this year I joined the Board of Directors for our local chapter. I can say without a doubt the AFSP is doing great things for suicide prevention and support for those who have lost loved ones to suicide.

You can find out more here about what the AFSP does and why I’m raising funds for their national Out of the Darkness Overnight Walk. This amazing event is a 17-mile walk literally over night from dusk till dawn. I did it for the first time in 2013 in Washington DC and the event truly changed my life. When they announced that this year’s walk would be in my hometown of Seattle I was thrilled, but also nervous about raising the funds since I had just done it last year. So I got a little creative.

Yes, sometimes I just stare at the words in this graphic and feel validated.  TRUE STORY.

Yes, sometimes I just stare at the words in this graphic and feel validated. TRUE STORY.

I decided to reach out within my blogger community and sell shirts with original artwork by me about being a blogger. I call it the Butterfly Blogger t-shirt. If you look closely it says the word “Blogger” in the body and within the wings you’ll see words that represent the many “hats” we wear as bloggers and social media influencers. The art itself actually has nothing to do with suicide prevention, its just my way to raising funds for this important cause. Each year 38,000 people die by suicide and around a million make an attempt. Its the 10th leading cause of death in our country and that is unacceptable. If you and I can help bring suicide out of the darkness I truly believe we can stop suicide.

Please consider buying a t-shirt or tank top to support my suicide prevention fundraising. 40-50% of the sales are directly donated to the AFSP. If you can’t buy, please share this link. To me this is also about raising awareness. The more people know that its okay to talk about mental health and suicide, the more people will reach out for help. They’ll feel less alone. They’ll be less ashamed of their very real illness.

Cristi Comes is a mom, wife, mental health advocate and writer at Motherhood Unadorned. She’s also a member of the Board of Directors for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Washington State, and is on the editorial leadership team for Postpartum Progress. You can reach her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

****This post is not sponsored, I am just very proud of Cristi and her work with these tees! Though I may be actively trying to persuade her to send me the tank top version because that wasn’t an exaggeration, I really do want it in every style…****

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