Kris Mares

Just a woman trying to love Jesus and others a little bit more…

You are invited… May 3, 2016

Filed under: Girlie,Motherhood — Kris @ 9:08 am
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It was another piece of paper. Another thing to put on the calendar. Something else to schedule. But Girlie was so excited to hand me that paper with those words at the top.

You are invited…

Granted. She didn’t think she would be. We thought this time she wouldn’t have gotten the invitation. So when she got one, Girlie was SO excited – “Mommy can you come?” “Sure baby, let me put it on my calendar.”

The invitation sat on the counter for a couple of days. “Mommy, did you get this in your planner yet?” “Not yet, let me put it in there right now.” I slipped it into the front pouch to add it to the calendar page later.

Fast forward to this morning. I was all ready to drop the kids off and then go walking. I have this goal to move more remember? Today was a good morning to do that. I hadn’t showered and had grub clothes on. “Mommy, this morning is the Honor Roll Breakfast remember?” “Uhhhh… You’re right, I think it is.” “Check your calendar.”

I had forgotten. We were invited and I had forgotten. Forgotten the importance of this invitation for my Girlie. Forgotten that I had said I would go. Forgotten all about the invitation.

So a quick shower and new outfit later and I was presentable and ready. Off to school drop off and the Honor Roll Breakfast.

When the students walked in, she looked for me. She wanted to make sure I was there. I took the picture, hugged her when it was all over and went off to the rest of my morning.

A moment of grace.

Although I had forgotten, the invitation was still there. Although I had forgotten, Girlie was still living with my promise. Although I had forgotten, space was made for me to remember and be present and live into my promise.

Parenting is distracting work. We juggle a variety of needs and questions and assumptions and chores and invitations. As I’m learning to give a best yes, I am continually balancing self, husband, children, friends, ministry. Today, I almost blew it. I almost missed a best yes.

But grace entered in.

My heavenly Father used a gentle nudge to remind me that I am invited…

And you are invited too. Each of us are invited to live into the promises made by God, the good father. And when we forget about that standing invitation, we get reminders that the invitation still stands. Even after we have forgotten. Even after we have left our Bible sit, tucked away and unread for however long. Even after we ignore the small reminders.

But grace enters in and space is made for us to remember and be present in a life of love and to live into the promises of God.

Will you accept the invitation today?


When Did She Grow Up? February 21, 2011

Filed under: Girlie — Kris @ 8:04 pm
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Today is Girlie’s birthday. She’s four. I know that’s not really grown up, but man she’s growing up. I look at her and remember her swollen eye from a bug bite. I see her walking insanely early. I see her climbing on everything. She still does that. We called her monkey when she was little. I see the little baby with the red ribbon held in her hair with toothpaste when she was just hours old.

Now, she’s becoming a shadow of me. She’s right there with me in the kitchen, helping and learning. She knows what i-c-e-c-r-e-a-m spells. She wants necklaces and make up and braids and twirly dresses. She wants to be a mommy. She wants to be read to, to do “some school work,” and to climb in bed with me and Racer because she “didn’t get enough snuggles.”

Girlie is lovely and sweet and kind and brave and smart and strong and nurturing and spirited. She is all the best parts of me and Racer.

Heavenly Father, as my Girlie continues to grow up so fast before my eyes, show me how to be the mother I need to be to her. Help me encourage the good in her. Guide me in teaching and loving her. Discipline me so that she doesn’t learn the ugly parts of who I am. God, always help me to see the beauty in her. Amen.


Apple Extra Crisp November 9, 2010

Filed under: Girlie — Kris @ 6:51 am
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I’ve been buying a lot of apples lately.  Not really sure why; I suppose it’s because they actually get eaten and they’ve been on sale soooo… in the cart they go.  Anyway, I decided to make some apple crisp the other day with Girlie’s help.  I busted out my trusty Better Homes and Garden Cook Book.  You know, the red and white gingham one that it seems every bride gets as a wedding gift.  I love that cookbook.  It is my favorite.  If I went down to one cookbook, that would be it.  In fact, I probably should just de-clutter and get rid of the others because I really don’t ever use them…

Anyway, back to the topic at hand.

So I get out my cookbook for the fruit crisp recipe.  Then adapted and made it my own.  I decided that since I’m pregnant, I deserve extra crisp – here’s how I made my Apple Extra Crisp.


  • 5-6 medium apples, cut, cored and peeled
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup oats (I used quick-cooking)
  • 1 overflowing cup brown sugar barely packed (I really don’t like the process of packing the sugar, thus I just pour it in the measuring cup and pat down a little)
  • 1/2 cup flour (I use a mixture of whole wheat and white)
  • 1 overflowing tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 overflowing tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (we had these from the trees in our yard, but you could use walnuts or almonds and they would taste good too)


1.  Preheat oven to 375.  Cut and peel apples and place them in the bottom of a 9×9 baking dish (I used glass).

2.  Pour sugar over the apples.  In a bowl, mix together oats, brown sugar, flour, nutmeg and cinnamon.  Cut in the butter then mix it with your hands to get a crumbly, yummy topping.

3.  Sprinkle the topping over the apples.  Sprinkle pecans over the top.

4.  Bake for 30 minutes.

As you can see, I’m not a “precise” cook.  I love cinnamon and nutmeg, so I figure a little extra will never hurt right?  This was soooo yummy!  Crunchy on the top and warm and gooey underneath.  Next time, I’ll have to make sure I have ice cream to put with it! 

And just so you know, the leftovers heated up are pretty darn good too!  Let me know how you like it!


My Girlie February 22, 2010

Filed under: Girlie — Kris @ 3:08 pm
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Girlie is now 3.  Next birthday I think she’ll be 15!  When I was pregnant with her, we didn’t know if she was a boy or a girl (Racer’s choice – I wanted to know).  When she was born and we learned Girlie was a girl my response was “What am I going to do with a girl?”  I know how to handle boys.  I know how to get boys to do what I want/need them to.  I’m not so good with girls. 

I suppose I’m figuring that out though.  Parenting Girlie has been an interesting learning experience.  I have learned a lot about myself in being Girlie’s mom.  Why?  Because she is just like me.  Don’t get me wrong – she looks just like Racer with her beautiful, big brown eyes.  She acts just like me.  Ask my mom and she’ll confirm that frustrating fact.  Why frustrating?  I’m not the easiest girl to get along with and put 2 of me together – hair pulling, name calling and an all out cat-fight can ensue.  In this case, I’m bigger, so I have the advantage (most days).  So yeah, parenting myself has NOT been easy. 

Girlie and I are both stubborn, opinionated, like to have things our way, smart, loving and sometimes manipulative creatures.  Good thing I can see right through her act (Racer has a harder time and I don’t really want him to learn; then he’ll see right through my act too).  We love life and can get overly excited and tired by too many things.  We like to have our hand in everything and we are nosey.  Hmm… curious sounds better doesn’t it?  We are natural-born leaders and don’t like to be told what to do. 

In parenting Girlie, I have been smacked in the face with the realization that I am the one modeling and showing her how to be a woman, wife and mother.  That feels like such as awesome and daunting responsibility.  There are so many things about myself that I want to change; I don’t want her to be how I am on many days.  I hear her repeat what I’ve said to my other children or husband and I cringe.  Wow, I want her to be kinder to  my grandbabies.  I want her to be a woman who loves Jesus so much and walks so closely to Him, that only love and joy come out of her actions and words.  I want the world to look at her and see a reflection of Christ. 

I suppose I should start there.  When I start with self-change, then like a stone dropping into a pool of water, the change will ripple out from there. 

I also, don’t have the full burden of raising my child.  I have a community of believers that are also raising my children to be strong in their faith.  I sure couldn’t do it without them.  The church nursery workers give my Girlie love when she is small and learning to find church as a safe place.  Her Sunday school teachers share all the great songs like “Zaccheus” that I forget to teach her.  The grandmothers in the church give her lots of love and hugs when Girlie’s own grandmothers live so far away.  The preschool teachers gently teach her when it seems like my focus so many days is disciplining her.  My friends love her enough to give her space to be herself without having the responsibility of being her parent.  The Holy Spirit guides her, Jesus leads her and God gives her more love than I ever could. 

I love being Girlie’s mom.  It’s hard, however, I know – I pray – that someday, I will look at her parenting her own little girl just like her and think “She didn’t turn out so bad after all.”  And I’m a better woman because she is my daughter.

Girlie – I love you the pinkest.


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