Abby Turner is ready to encourage the sisterhood to open our homes and invite people over before we overthink things. Why? Because hospitality isn't about the fancy menu or immaculate home; it's about people! It's about serving as Jesus served. When we discipline ourselves to make our homes and tables available to others, we are ensuring that we are serving those around us. We can't wait for the perfect time, because that will never happen. Abby says hospitality is a discipline, not a spiritual gift.
In true Open Door Sisterhood fashion, Abby is part practical and part inspirational. Not only does she provide a faith foundation for why we should practice hospitality, she also gives us lots of things to think about as we look ahead to fall and even the holidays. Planning goes a long way. Grocery stores can help with the prep. Simplicity can help make it happen. And again, it's all about the people! So what can we do ahead of time, to be able to enjoy people in the moment? This episode provides some clues to help eliminate avoidable holiday stress.
Abby gives us some great easy recipe ideas, she offers her best holiday timesaving tips, and she reminds us that we can bring the fun to others. Whether it's taking a friend dinner at HER house or simply bringing a friend a coffee on the soccer sidelines, hospitality is about having a heart of service and we can do that anywhere! Don't wait another second, go ahead and push play and get ready for a fall hospitality reset.
A chill is in the air and the seasonal shift is beginning. As we wave goodbye to summer and welcome fall, we are also looking to refresh our routines, home systems, and menus. Today begins our new series: Fall Reset.
Sarah Molitor, from @modernfarmhousefamily on Instagram, joins us to share her practical ideas on time management and home systems. As a homeschooling mom of six boys, we have a great deal to learn from this capable mama. She also lets us in on her secret to dinner time (it has to do with a sheet pan), and the fall traditions she treasures the most (you won’t expect this one).
You will be inspired to reboot your own life this fall as you listen to our inspiring conversation. Get a cozy pumpkin spice latte and settle in with us for this great episode!
No question, motherhood stretches us. In our Sister Straight Talk episode of this series, Krista and Alex talk about how expectations and transitions are big opportunities for mom-growth.
Expectations, or should we say unmet expectations, are a trademark of motherhood. Our hosts talk about the "macro" and "micro" of mothering expectations. From how our kids will complete a chore to how we'll feel as moms, we often don't know we have expectations until they aren't met. Transitions are also a constant. As soon as we feel we've mastered, or at least have a handle on, a certain phase of parenting, things change. How we respond to these changes can impact the tone of our families and who we are becoming as women.
No matter the stage of mothering you're in, from pregnancy through the empty nest, you have a chance to meet expectations and transitions with open hands and a readiness to stretch out of your comfort zone. God uses your role as a mom, to shape you in good ways. These stretch marks can sometimes feel like battle scars, but they tend to help us grow in traits like patience, resilience, and wisdom, all traits that are good to increase. Join this relatable, hope-filled conversation with your sisters who give it to you straight on motherhood.
Building resilience in motherhood is one of the best things we can do for ourselves and our families. We need it as moms, and our children need it as they make their way through life.
Joining us on the third episode of this Motherhood series, Rhonda Stoppe speaks honestly and candidly about the challenges she faced as a mom, and how she found the strength and faith to keep taking steps forward. Rhonda raised a son with special needs, adopted a child who needed a home, and struggled through two different moves.
You will be encouraged and inspired to love God deeper, trust Him more fully, and see trials as opportunities through this episode.
We are in a series highlighting the various ways motherhood grows us. Often we do not think about how creativity can be an integral part of motherhood, but that is exactly what can emerge if we allow it.
Rachel Kang, founder of Indelible Ink Writers, talks about how she finds time to write in small pockets of time while parenting her two young boys, and how motherhood has increased her imagination.
Often, moms neglect their own creative pursuits to care for the needs right in front of them. In this episode we look at how creativity and the duties of motherhood can not only co-exist, but enhance and strengthen the other.
Sarah Bragg, host of the Surviving Sarah podcast, says motherhood has grown her up. She has changed through the challenges she's faced as a mom. And boy isn't that true of motherhood? We try new things, face new feelings, overcome new challenges and as a result we are stretched in ways that don't leave us. These stretch marks act as our reminders of growth and that our children are a gift God uses to grow us up as well.
In this episode Sarah brings her candid voice to the conversation as we consider what it means to live an authentic life in front of our children, how to accept our limitations while choosing growth in some areas, and how honesty helps with both of these efforts. We consider the women we ARE vs. the women we wish we were and how we have to get past some of the mothering expectations (read pressure) we put on ourselves.
Motherhood is a gift. In large part because our kids act as a mirror, or as Sarah puts it, a highlighter, to all of who we are. We discover parts of ourselves (from anger to unconditional love) and skillsets that help us understand ourselves better. You will walk away from this interview remembering that God already sees and knows every part of who you are as a woman and a mom. You can let go of some of those self-imposed expectations and celebrate the unique, creative person you ARE as a mom.
We've had our summer school of sorts with professors from around the country talking to us about how art and faith enhance each other. Consider this episode with Krista and Alex the class discussion. Our two podcast hosts sit down together and talk about what challenged them from the previous episodes in the series, what they want to change in their own lives as a result, and how engaging with creative works enhances our understanding of who God is and who our neighbors are.
These two talk about the power of story, the need for shared experiences, their creative outlets, and God's reflection in us as makers. Though you get to listen in on their thoughts, this is meant to be a group discussion. Tell us about what struck you! Where are you inspired to interact with the arts? How has art impacted your faith? What kind of creative expression gets you feeling or thinking?
"Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life." -Pablo Picasso
Music is powerful and has echoes of the eternal within it. It also can see us through difficult and dark times.
Ginny Owens, an award winning singer / songwriter, author, and speaker joins us to talk about the role music has played in her life and faith from a young age. As a blind singer who literally sings in darkness, she also carries the message that anyone can learn to find a melody in dark and lonely seasons.
You will be captured by Ginny’s story, and inspired to find your own way to weave music into your faith story.
When we think of art, we often think of the canvas and the painter. Visual arts, from paintings to drawings, sculpture to tapestry, are creations that can both inspire and intimidate us. Art historian Dr. Elissa Yukiko Weichbrodt joins us for our "summer school series for grown-ups" on faith and art to remind us we have what is needed to interact with the visual arts. We don't all need to be art historians to be able to appreciate and respond to the artwork around us.
Elissa is an art and art history professor at Covenant College and gives us insights on how to think about our own interactions with visual arts. From the importance of seeing art in person to appreciating the making involved we can all learn more about our neighbors by interacting with the work. Elissa encourages us to not automatically dismiss art we don't care for, but use our discomfort as an opportunity to learn more about the stories involved. In this way art we don't like can be a bridge to learn, and therefore love our neighbors, more fully.
Whether you're looking for some inspiration to approach your local museum with new eyes, or you are wanting to pull out some pencils and paper to sketch your backyard view, this third episode in our series will help you see the world around you with fresh eyes and know that there is much to find that is true and beautiful.
We often don’t think of theatre as an avenue for exploring our faith, but today on the series we discuss the unique role the theatre arts can play if we engage as a participant or active audience member.
Mitchell Thomas, chair of the theatre department at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California, joins us to share his expertise. We talk about how storytelling can help us as we move through life, how we can bring our faith to the stage in multiple ways, and why it’s important to explore all types of theatre.
At the end Mitchell shares multiple theatre exercises that will give your family permission to be silly together in your own living room. Krista has experienced the fun these bring as Mitchell is her brother and he does these around the campfire every summer with her family.
This is a topic you may have not thought a great deal about and it may just open up a whole new world – listen in!
We're back! The podcast took a break in June and we are back with a new series on faith and the fine arts. We like to think of it as a summer school for grown-ups where we get to take all of the electives we didn't have time for in school. As we think through the arts, we can look for what is true and beautiful and how that is a reflection of God's nature. That's our kind of curriculum!
We are kicking the series off with English professor Karen Swallow Prior to talk about the benefits of reading good literature. We discuss why reading literature matters, how our reading habits are changing with technology use, and the importance of setting aside time and space to appreciate the beautiful. Karen explains how experiencing lessons with a character helps to grow our empathy in a different way than simply reading the moral of a story and how reading can enhance our Christian faith.
It's not too late to do some fun summer reading. This conversation can inspire you to pick up an old classic or a modern novel. Karen reminds us that speed doesn't matter when reading through a novel, so no pressure to check books off your list, but she does share some of her favorites in case you need a recommendation from a professor. Consider this your summer school English class that will change how and why you are picking up that great novel.
Today is the last episode in the “Secrets Of A Centered Soul” series, and Alex and Krista talk about what they learned, what they loved, and some practices they employ that weren’t discussed in the series.
From being in nature, to journaling, to intentionally creating spiritual friendships, you will hear how Krista and Alex keep their souls centered, and how they are continuing to grow.
This episode feels like sitting down to talk to a sister about the series as a whole. It’s straight talk, pure and simple. Join us!
The Power of Habit – Charles Duhigg
“Try practicing your way into faith” – Blaise Pascal
“There’s nothing accidental about the spiritual life. It requires our intention – our agency. It requires that we show up.” -Dallas Willard
I Told The Mountain To Move – Patricia Raybon
“Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul.” – John Muir
“If the devil can’t make you sin, he’ll make you busy. There’s truth in that. Both sin and busyness have the exact same effect—they cut off your connection to God, to other people, and even to your own soul.” – Corrie Ten Boom
Spiritual Disciplines Handbook by Adele Calhoun
Walter Brueggemann – Praying the Psalms
As we talk about what it means to have a centered soul, we must talk about how we communicate with God. Prayer is our ongoing conversation with the one who made us and loves us. It's mysterious and sometimes overwhelming to consider God hears any of what we feel or say. We invited award-winning author Patricia Raybon to this series to talk with us about how we talk with God.
Patricia reminds us of the simplicity of prayer. It is about spending time with God. This means we don't have to always be talking, we can simply be. But when we have something to say, we don't need to edit, we can bring our full thoughts and hearts into the ongoing conversation. Prayer takes time and Patricia reminds us that we can't skip over relationships, we must invest time.
We find our prayer life is often reflected in our tangible life. We can love people well by being with them, making ourselves available, and putting aside our agendas. Honest, agenda-free prayer helps us love others better because it gives us the practice we need to be open to what unfolds. If you feel intimidated by prayer, stuck in your prayers, or wondering if praying is even real, push play and listen in to our conversation.
Habits. Many have them around morning coffee, exercise, repetitive words, or before bed rituals. But have you ever considered turning your faith into a habit?
As we dive further into our Secrets To A Centered Soul Series, Jen Pollock Michel, an award winning author, helps us see how turning our faith into a habit can transform our days, and eventually, our entire lives. Through the five practices of seeing, living, loving, knowing, and obeying, we learn how to nurture a vibrant life of faith.
The Holy Spirit can feel a bit mysterious, the part of the Trinity we can't quite get our arms around. In our continuing series on Secrets of a Centered Soul, Jeannie Cunnion shares with us about the gift of the Holy Spirit that all followers of Jesus receive. Jeannie doesn't want us to miss out on all the Holy Spirit has to offer us. From comfort to counsel to power, we have a gift we can tap into.
Jeannie shares with us 5 things we can know right now that will help us better understand and receive the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is for our good, never leaves us, and dwells within us. In this episode, we talk about the healing power of the spirit and what it looks like for someone else to walk in the spirit. If you are facing challenges and are asking God for help in taking that next step, doing that hard thing, the Holy Spirit is available to you.
For the person who is seeking a new hope, wanting to know God's nearness in a powerful way, this conversation will act as a reminder that the Holy Spirit is our strength and we can face so much more when standing in its power.
What role does movement and the body play in spirituality? Elizabeth Peterson, spiritual director and yoga instructor, is here to guide us in our understanding.
In this Secrets of the Centered Soul Series, we are looking at various ways to deepen our relationship with God. In this episode we talk about why movement matters and the healing power found in being present in our bodies.
For the first time ever on our podcast, we have Elizabeth guide us through a short live spiritual practice. We pray it will be a blessing for you.
If you are looking to grow spiritually, you’ve come to the right place.
We are kicking off our new series, Secrets of a Centered Soul with pastors, spiritual directors, and Enneagram trainers Doug and Adele Calhoun. They share how the Enneagram is a tool that helps us better understand ourselves so we can know better how to connect with God.
As Doug says in the episode, "So much about the spiritual life is about awareness." The Enneagram helps us become more aware of our blind spots, patterns, and false narratives so that we can put on the new identity that Christ offers his flock. We go through the "not enough narrative" of each Enneagram number and which spiritual practices can help each number better connect to God's heart.
This new series is about tools and frameworks you can use in your everyday life to live with a centered soul. One that is centered on Christ. "And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together." -Colossians 1:17
In this final episode in our Spring Refresh Series, our Sisterhood Home Coach, Krista Gilbert, answers your questions about problem areas, redecorating, and how to refresh an outdoor space.
We talk closet clutter, when to keep an item and when to give it away, how to organize kids’ papers and artwork, and what to do with the many paper piles around the house.
Krista also gives an easy to follow four-step plan for redecorating a space that needs some love.
You will love this practical episode as you refresh your home this spring.
Jam packed with practical ideas, professional organizer Lisa Trigsted shares with the sisterhood her best tips on stuff management for a family. Known on social media as Neat Freak Mckinney, Lisa shares her simple yet life changing tactics for families who are swimming in stuff.
So what does Lisa suggest? First, edit out the extra things. Then maintain new organizing systems with a weekly reset. These simple tactics can change how your family manages and relates to stuff. Once organized Lisa encourages listeners to challenge themselves to a spending freeze and eventually incorporating the one-in-one-out rule.
We spend a good part of the conversation covering how to get family members on board with an organizing plan and how to tackle big projects and maintenance as a team. Lisa understands the real-life challenges moms have in keeping a space organized and doesn't shy away from the "but how?" questions. You will feel absolutely inspired and empowered to tackle that stack of papers or overstuffed closet after listening to this episode. So go ahead and push play for your next dose of our series on Spring Refresh.
Krista has been home coaching Alex on her laundry room the past few weeks to kick off spring cleaning, and we are talking about the experience on the episode today. The laundry room dilemma led to coaching around other spaces, and also to identifying some important internal discoveries along the way.
We explore what holds Alex back from doing what she knows she needs to do in her home, how she was able to push past those obstacles, and what she learned and accomplished.
You will hear parts of your own story in this one and it will encourage you to make changes that will propel you forward.
If you are a person who needs a little bit of motivation to get your spring refresh going, or any kind of refresh, this is a great place to start.
We've all been home a loooonnnngggg time and it may be our spaces need a spring refresh. Wendy Trigsted is working to make a peaceful home. It doesn't just happen though, she intentionally thinks through the systems that need to be in place to make things run smoothly. From laundry systems to Easter baskets, this mom of four gives us her tips to simplify in order to increase peace.
This is the first episode of our series on Spring Refresh in our homes. Heavy on the practical Wendy shares with us how she cleans out a closet, how she stores and uses her cleaning supplies, and how she decides if she should make a purchase for her home. In the first five minutes of this conversation, Wendy gives us three easy, quick tips we can do TODAY to create more peace in our space (and bonus they are all 100% FREE.)
No matter the size or style of your home, the ages and stages of those you live with, you will be able to increase peace this spring season. You won't want to miss this very practical conversation with Wendy Trigsted. Her principles work well for any family size or season. And who doesn't want a little more peace as we refresh for spring?
In this episode Krista and Alex wrap up the series Teens: The State of the Union. They discuss what impacted them most, what changes they are making in their parenting because of what they heard, and what felt practical.
They also weigh in on their experience parenting teens – what’s been hard, what’s been helpful, and what they would recommend.
Join us as we have a sister to sister conversation, and as we attempt to make the most of the teen series.
Communications professor Heather Thompson Day talks about Gen Z's use of technology and social media and how these tools impact how they communicate (or don't) with the world around them. From developing a low tolerance for discomfort to managing how others perceive us, Heather offers professional insights into how social media is shaping a generation.
For parents of today's teens who feel at a loss on how to help their kids navigate this world of screens, posts, and likes, this conversation gives insight on practices families can take together. From meditation on Scripture to family check-ins we can open new channels of connection with our kids that help them identify and feel their feelings while learning about disappointment and discomfort.
Social media can feel like a beast (because it is!) and Heather doesn't let us forget it has addictive features that rewire our brain when we're engaged with it. We don't have to despair though. We can have meaningful relationships with our teens that help anchor them in the actual world and gives them the tools to better manage the technology.
Are you in a house with a teenager who is experiencing big emotions? Or maybe there isn’t enough communication around emotions and you want to help your teen be able to name them better. Whatever your situation, this podcast will offer tools to help you parent well through the emotional ups and downs of adolescence.
David Thomas, a well known therapist and author, brings his expertise to the conversation. He talks about the four emotional milestones that will help any teen, why the Enneagram plays an important role in this conversation, and how we can coach our children on how to handle their big feelings.
David is a fan favorite around The Sisterhood and this episode underscores why. After listening, you will walk away better equipped to parent your teenager with more love, grace, and hope.
If they can’t see it on the grown ups they trust, it’s incredibly hard to develop it.
The Backdoor To Your Teen’s Heart
“To the degree that teens can predict you they will dismiss you.”
The Path Between Us – Enneagram book
Suzanne Stabile’s Podcast – Enneagram Expert
Katie Bulmer has been traveling the country talking to sorority women about identity, strength, sisterhood, and of course relationships! Katie comes to The Open Door Sisterhood with insight on the big questions parents can help their daughters ask as they enter the dating world. Questions like, "What is important to me?" "What am I dating for?" "What am I looking for in a relationship?"
We also cover, how technology impacts dating today, what science can teach young people about "hook up culture" and bonding, how media and pornography influence teenagers' impressions of sex, and how we as parents can ask questions that help our daughters (and sons) come to answers about what they want for themselves.
Katie's expertise falls on the girl end of the spectrum, but many of the principles we cover are great for both boys and girls. Have lifelong conversations with your kids about dating and sex, model the healthiest marriage you can to the kids in your home, and pray without ceasing for both your child and the person he or she is dating. We can't go wrong with these overarching goals leading the way.