Sanctity vs. Quality of Life

“This isn’t just a Christian concept. It is the concept on which western civilization rests. Every noble ideal — justice, fairness, equity, compassion, charity — all of it, all of it, is grounded in the notion that life, human life, has intrinsic value. Not value according to its usefulness, or value according to convenience, or value according to how enjoyable it is. Value. Life is valuable because it is life. If you deny this, then you deny everything. There is no reason for justice, fairness, equity, compassion, or charity if human life has no value, or merely a value contingent upon whatever parameters we’ve arbitrarily assigned. ” –Matt Walsh

Euthanasia is being glorified nationally as brave and heroic. A mother’s letter to her unborn baby about his abortion being praised as heartwarming. Where are we at, America?

Right now, we are in the middle of a campaign of prayer, fasting and education known as 40 Days For Life across the country and I can’t help but think about the Sanctity of Life and how far from this moral standard we have digressed.

A person’s “quality of life” does not define their life’s value or worth. The whole quality of life concept is a man-made definition of a person’s ability to live a happy, healthy, productive life, free of suffering and any bad consequences. Life is for living, they say, and if you can’t live any more, then find a way out. It’s an arbitrary value that is not grounded on any moral code. Why does man get to decide who’s life is worth living and who would be better off dead? The right to life covers every human being, from conception to natural death, and it absolutely trumps every other constitutional right our man-made American government grants us.

An unwanted baby? Abort it.
A baby born with a severe handicap? Infanticide.
A woman with terminal cancer? Commit suicide.
An elderly man with Alzheimer’s? Euthanize.

People want true equality? Here it is: every human soul is worth the same. Equality, in definition, means sameness. A baby who is 8 weeks old in the womb has the same exact worth as the high-powered executive making millions. An elderly women who is blind and has on-set dementia (like my 90-year old Grandma) has the same worth as a healthy, stay-at-home mother of 3 children. True equality’s most foundational belief is we all have the same value in this world and life is the most valuable thing a human being has because it is just that: human life. Our personal value is not determined by how good of a life we are living; it goes way, way beyond that. The Santicty of Life promises us so much more than that. We are sacred beings because we are created in God’s own image. There are pieces in our souls that reflect God into this world.

We are not animals to be put down or put out of our misery when we become a burden or face suffering. We are human beings with souls who are highly intelligent, deep feeling, rational beings. We touch people by being here. Our lives matter, our suffering and dying matter. It transforms those around us, make us live better lives after someone is gone. A life that we will only have once and never again.

“I pray my words reach the multitudes that are looking at your story and believing the lie that suffering is a mistake, that dying isn’t to be braved, that choosing our death is the courageous story. No – hastening death was never what God intended. But in our dying, He does meet us with His beautiful grace.” –Kara Tippett

We need to honor each person as worthy of dignity and respect simply because they are created in God’s image. We need to be their voice when they can’t find their own and surround them with support. It is important to try to understand the emotional state of people seeking an abortion, deciding to commit suicide or be euthanized. Instead of judging and condemning them, we need to provide compassion, support and most importantly, Christ’s unending, merciful love.

WATCH: The Dignity of Human Life

Shooting my first wedding (with a camera)!

I had an incredible “first” this weekend – I photographed my very first wedding!

When I first got asked to do this event in July, I was extremely hesitant. I’m not a wedding photographer and I’ve never really wanted to be either. I don’t have all the fancy lighting and flashes and I’m a one-man show. But she was insistent that she loved my work (that always feels great) and so I agreed…and I was a bundle of nerves all last week.

Luckily, it took place at the Palace Theater, my very first job in high school where I worked for 5 years, so I knew the venue like the back of my hand. The Palace Theater is an old, beautiful historical theater and the couple played up the Love Story theme – it was absolutely adorable! The marquee was lite up with their names and the favors where popcorn treats.

I enticed my sister to be my unofficial assistant for the day and I’m so glad she offered up 7 hours of her Saturday to help me because I CANNOT imagine doing that by myself. Although she has no photography experience, just having her next to me is always enough to calm my nerves.  I’m sorting through the 3,700 pictures we took that day to find the best of the best and I cannot wait to share the results. I can’t say I’m going to be putting great effort into breaking through into the wedding industry anytime soon, but it was such a great experience for my photography skills to have under my belt and in my portfolio!

Stay tuned for some sneak peeks…🙂


My Office Sanctuary

When we first moved in to our new house in May, our office furniture was kind of thrown into its place and with everything else going on, it really hasn’t been touched since. So it’s look like this for the last 5 months:


Boring. Sad. Depressing. Something needed to be done.

These past 2-3 months have been so incredibly busy but wonderful for my budding photography hobby and I’ve been clocking many, many hours at this desk every night, trying to keep up with my own life. Last weekend my husband went out and splurged on me, purchasing us a new MacBook laptop. It’s such a sleek, fast, beautiful piece of machinery and it motivated me to get my “space” together. I actually already owned many of the things I am now using in my office, so it was just a matter of taking some time to get myself organized – and I love the way it turned out!

A couple of my favorite things: I created a Kate Spade-inspired scripture print and used a frame I already owned = a completely free wall print. I snagged the globe from Goodwill for $0.50 last winter and it’s sat in a box since then and I was excited to finally find a place for it. I also found a sugar jar on sale at Target for $3 with a cute tiny chalkboard label on it that I am using as a pencil holder. And of course, my favorite Greenroom notebooks that I take on every shoot with me.

Pretty, comfy, organized and inspiring🙂

We also changed out the lighting in this room. As a general rule, our house had awful lighting in it. Everything was straight from 1980 and hadn’t been touched in 35 years. Burnt orange ceiling fans and old, dated fixtures. So it’s something we’ve slowly replaced throughout the house and it’s amazing what a HUGE difference good lighting makes in a room – it instantly looks modern and brand new! Our office used to be the old dining room but we converted another space in our home for that so this gaudy gold chandelier had to go. My bruised head thanks my husband for finally changing it out – we’ve bumped it so many time and we’ve sworn all summer it needed to go.

Bon voyage, gaudy 1980’s light with too many bulbs!


Can Pro-Life and Feminism Coexist?

On Monday, I posted on Facebook this article “Christian Women Taking Back ‘Feminism'” from the ChristianPost from a couple years ago, with my own comments: “The article is a bit old, but I like these terms… ‘a woman who is conservative and pro-life, who has a calling in the workplace, but who also embraces her role as a Christian wife and mother.'”

I had a friend on Facebook reply on my post who is clearly passionate about the feminist movement and we had a discussion about feminism and pro-life legislation. I appreciated her attempt at inclusivity and she even questioned what popular feminist activists would think about a pro-life feminist. I was left contemplating these things and I’d love to hear what other thinks about them as well.

Just a couple of my own thoughts…

I believe there is a huge gaping hole in feminism’s most basic fundamental principle that everyone is equal. I find it very difficult to reconcile feminism with anti-life legislation. Isn’t killing a person simply because he/she exists or is “inconvenient” something a feminist should be up in arms about? If a feminist truly believes that every human soul has the same value and worth, and they are fighting for true equality for all, they have to apply that belief to every human soul or else their fight (and logic) just does not make sense. It’s a phony facade they are hiding behind to achieve their own agendas. The stances they take on social issues are built around the belief that every human has the same value so it’s time for them to woman-up and stand true to this in every sense of the belief. Isn’t every human soul worth the same? Shouldn’t they be fighting for life?

This isn’t a self-righteous “Christian” fight and not once did I mention God, a Bible passage, or anything to do with my spirituality. Why? Because this goes way beyond being a Christian, Jewish or Agnostic; this goes right down to being a human and having a strong conviction about what we are worth.  There was no self-righteous judging involved; on the contrary, I wanted real answers to my questions and objections…and I got nothing.

As humans, we do not have the right to define what a human being is or measure their value (and the Supreme Court is included in this; they are humans, after all). It’s simply and truly not our right. Just because the Supreme Court decides something doesn’t mean we should accept it as a society. They’ve gotten plenty of things wrong – slavery was legal for over 100 years in America. Legality does not equate morality. I think it is pretty obvious where I am going with this and what pro-choice arguments sound dangerously similar to…I look back on our 18th century founders and how they proclaimed that a black African was of less value than a human being, justifying their enslavement. That was legal  for 100 or so years in America. Or Hitler’s judgment of the Jewish race’s value to be less than other humans and the execution of 6 million people at the hands of willing and eager people and governments.

And here we are, in this modern 21st century, doing the EXACT SAME THING to our most defenseless human beings. Labeling them as less-than-human, saying they have no value, creating a culture of death in America, executing 56 million humans. Valuing human life and protecting every person’s most absolute basic right to life trumps “choice” every single time and I feel like reversing legal murder of babies should be a feminist’s first and most important fight they take on! There is no equality in legal murder. It is not our place to de-value human worth and feminists need to do better than this.

I am fighting for pro-equality from conception to natural birth for every human soul. And yet there are feminists who are adamantly anti-life, which the exact opposite of equality. Feminist who celebrate the death of 56 million babies and wear it as a badge of honor. How could I stand behind a label, that as a whole, believes the exact opposite of the most foundational belief of equality?

So in answer to my question – can pro-life and feminism coexist? I feel being pro-life is the ONLY way feminism can exist without being a complete fraud. Either they believe every human soul has value, or they don’t. There’s no room for both.

So feminists, which way is it? I really and truly want an answer, if there even is one.


An attempt at hand-crafting cups

Earlier this summer I bought a Groupon deal for a one-day ceramic hand-crafted cup workshop and I got it for more than half price – such a great bargain! The workshop was with Gina DeSantis Ceramics at the Screw Factory in Lakewood and not having touched clay in 4 months, I was looking forward to it all week.

I learned really quickly that hand-crafting is very different from wheel throwing, which has been my previous experience. Everything is in your control, as you mold and form the clay, trying to get it to submit to the vision you have in your head. The slightest bit of pressure leaves a fingerprint and for my unlearned hands, I found it a bit frustrating. It takes endless patience and I can’t say I was exceptionally great at it during my first attempt.

But it was also therapeutic, the soft, moist clay bending and shaping to my will between my hands. There is something inherently satisfying in creating something from nothing. Forming kneading, shaping with precision, it can become anything I wish it to be. Ah, the power of art…🙂

Homemade Soy Candles with Essential Oils

I got the brilliant idea that I wanted to try and make my own candles because so many of the candle on the market these days are filled with yucky chemicals, toxins and pollutants I’d never want to inhale into my body.

So over the weekend I went thrift shopping and bought 5 small glasswares for $0.49 each. Not only are they completely adorable, but they were super cheap and I love that I am giving them a new life and up-cycling them. After a bit of research, I wanted my candles to be something I’d actually want to burn around my kids so I went with vegetable-based, eco-friendly soy wax that is made from a renewable resource. The wax is completely dye-free, fragrance-free, toxin-free and paraffin-free. I also wanted these to be free from artificial fragrances and knowing the awesome benefits of my essential oils, I made two batches of these candles. I used Wild Orange essential oils in the first batch and Lavender in the second. I think after this first attempt, I’d probably add a bit more of the EO’s to the batches to give them a stronger scent.

It was an incredibly easy process and my sister was on hand to help because it was a 2-man process. Melt the wax to 200*, let it cool to 175* and add in the oils. Heat up the glassware at 150* to avoid cracking. Add the wick and at 100*, pour the wax into glasswares with a funnel. Cool overnight (about 12 hours). Trim the wicks and enjoy!


  • Eco-friendly vegetable-based Soy Wax
    • Made with renewable resources & helps local farmers
    • Soy wax burns with zero petro soot, creating petro soot-free candles
    • Soy wax burns at lower temperatures, making it longer-lasting than paraffin candles
  • Filled with pure, undiluted Essential Oils
    • Essential oils have aromatherapy benefits
    • Endless combinations of natural scents
  • FREE of parafins, artificial fragrances, dyes, toxins, carcinogens or pollutants
  • Made in upcycled/reused glassware from local thrift stores

The Precious Feet Pin

Today I was on my way to Starbucks on lunch and I was behind a van with a bunch of bumper stickers on its trunk.

“Pray to end abortion.”

“Choose life. Your mother did.”

“Life is always worth defending.”

feetFor some reason a quick memory flashed in my head. It was Friday morning and I was in third grade at St. Vincent de Paul. We had just put hundreds of white crosses in our school’s front yard in memory of the millions of babies who never saw their own birthday. The Catholic Church has always fiercely defended life, from conception through natural birth and our school was extremely pro-life. Our whole school was celebrating mass together that morning and this mass was specifically offered up to end abortion. Ave Maria was being sung by our choir and the distinct organ tones are still in my head. I remember kneeling down and looking over at my teacher, who was maybe 7-8 month pregnant at the time. She had a little gold pin of 2 tiny feet on the collar of her dark green dress. Her hands were folded, her head bowed, and there were tears rolling down her cheeks.

I think that was the very first time I really understood how real abortion was. I was 8-years old. My teacher, a mother-to-be, weeping over all those babies and our whole school praying in unison to end abortion. That moment changed me and I was never the same.

I can’t even imagine what a scene like that would look like in today’s schools but it laid such a strong foundation in me for valuing life and this conviction has never left me. It’s an issue that is so strong and sure that has never been up for debate or wavered. It’s not political debate, it’s moral conviction. I can’t help but think what a different place our country would be if every kids grew up with these moral values deeply ingrained in them. We could change the nation. Bring America back to life. A Godly generation that would be a force to behold.

Then…when I became pregnant with my first, my mother-in-law passed along the same pin, this time a pair of silver feet. She had no idea the memory this tiny pin brought back and receiving it almost brought tears to my own eyes. My mother-in-law was given this pin when she first got married and wore the precious feet the whole time she was pregnant with my husband. So I wore them throughout my pregnancies with both of my children.

What a special memory they always remind me of and now a tradition I can pass to my daughter. Precious, indeed.