The greatest gifts in life are the people we love.

Last weekend I went to Seattle for Sisters Weekend. For a number of years my sisters and I have spent a weekend with our parents; I’m deeply thankful for the time together.

This year was our first Sisters Weekend without my dad. I had some tearful moments, but most of all I felt grateful to my dad for taking such good care of all of us, especially my mom.

We shared stories from our childhoods, like the time my mom had a substitute teaching job and she got all the way to the school before realizing I was still in the car. I’d stretched out on the back seat and fallen asleep. No seat belts were required, so I was quite comfortable. Imagine my mom’s surprise when she got all the way to the school and realized she’d forgotten to drop her four-year-old off with Mrs. Lindsey, who let me watch JP Patches and Romper Room.

We had a grand time staying in a beautiful historic hotel, going to a show at the 5th Avenue Theater, and eating at incredible restaurants. It was like stepping out of my life and into another for two days.

My sister and I even went to Nordstrom just to smell a perfume I’d read about. It was strange to be so frivolous.

By Saturday night I felt relaxed and wished we could have had one more day.

While you may not be able to get away for a fancy weekend, we mammas need to let our brains rest from the intensity of life. We spend so much time thinking about our children’s needs, we nearly forget our own. It’s therapeutic and good for us to take a break. Laughing really hard in a hotel lobby is good too.

Traditions anchor me, reminding me of what’s important. They also eliminate decisions – I know what I’m doing the weekend after Presidents Day each year. I’m somewhat averse to decision-making, so that’s a huge bonus.

Sisters Weekend is dear because the sole purpose is for the four of us to be together. We’re not celebrating a holiday, graduation, or wedding; we’re together just because we want to be, and it’s good.

Do you have a tradition of gathering with your parents or siblings on a regular, or even annual, basis? Leave a comment and share it with us.

Each Wednesday I send a short and sweet email to my inner circle of readers. I’d love to send it to you too! As my thanks, I’ll email you my guide for foster and adoptive moms. Click HERE to sign up and you’ll find it in your inbox this week.

With love on this last Monday of February,


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Let me introduce myself. Russ and I are the parents of twelve children by birth and adoption, and sometimes more through foster care. I'm the creator of One Thankful Mom which has been as much of a gift to me as to my readers. In 2011 I became a TBRI® Pracitioner* and have lived and breathed connected parenting ever since. I'm deeply honored to be the co-author, together with the late Dr. Karyn Purvis, of The Connected Parent; it is her final written work. I love speaking at events for adoptive and foster parents. I'm also the co-founder of The Adoption Connection, a podcast and resource site for adoptive moms. I mentor and encourage adoptive moms so you can find courage and hope in your journeys of loving your children well.


  1. Ann
    February 27, 2019

    Lisa, this is dear. How lovely that you all make the time to do this each year.

    1. Lisa Qualls
      February 28, 2019

      It’s so special. Thank you, Ann.


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