Jack's room where I leave the light on every day.
Jack’s room where I leave the light on every day.

Welcome! This blog/website/whatever you want to call it is something that many friends and most recently my kids have encouraged me to do. Maybe it’s because they think if I write what’s crammed in my mind that I won’t talk to them as much. I don’t think they will be that lucky. My name is Julie and I am married to a man who is my complete opposite. His name is Wayne and he’s kind, gentle, patient and a perfectionist. And most importantly, he loves the Lord and consistently works at trying to point his family toward the Light. You will see that the word “light” is a very important word to me and takes on different applications.

Wayne knows me inside and out and can talk me down when needed. It’s taken him over 20 years to come close to understanding the complexities that I possess. We have three children whose presence I love. Jack is 18 and for some reason thought going off to college in August was a good idea. Caroline is 17 and also thinks it will be a good idea to leave and go to college in two years (she’s a junior in high school). Elizabeth (or Lizzie, depending on my mood of the day) is 14 and a freshman in high school and doesn’t talk to me about going to college. Smart girl. Maybe she thinks I’ll start the ugly cry and not be able to stop. I guess I thought we would keep having groundhog day around here with everyone freezing at their current age. So when this past August came and we had to move Jack to Baylor University, I wasn’t prepared for the shock.

My sister (who has successfully launched three amazing boys into the real world) told me “leaving a light on” in Jack’s room would help. I guess I just thought I could sashay by his room daily and not look in there, which would keep me in denial that he was gone to college. But I took my sister’s advice and started leaving his light on by his bed and to my surprise, it actually made me feel better. Looking at a dark room represented a loss and the light somehow dispelled that…as crazy as that sounds.  Wayne would turn the light off because the practical side of him thought we were wasting electricity.  He quickly realized it was in his best interest to let me leave it on each day.  The term “leaving the light on” made me also start thinking of the importance of having light in my life and the intentionality of turning the light on. Light is cozy, warm, shows you what you need, shows you where you are (which is especially important if you get up in the middle of the night and don’t want to face plant into the wall like I have done). Light also represents home to me. And thanks to my amazing homemaker mom, a home full of light includes food. And lots of it.

I am going to include some easy recipes that I love and have made time and time again for people (primarily hungry teenagers) over the years. I’ll also include some fun (and very easy!) table decor for different themed events. I’m also going to include some blog posts from time to time. Some of the craziest stuff can happen within my family – especially when it comes to a family vacation, which is why my first blog post is from our RV Trip to Big Bend almost two years ago. So the name of this blog Leaving the Light On was born from the fact that my son went to college. It also made me realize that the only true and long lasting light that can illuminate my life is the light of Christ. I hope you will find a light to leave on in your life as well!