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St. Louis

Katie Vondera

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Katie is a St. Louis native, coffee lover, and difference maker. She has a passion for teaching at-risk high schoolers how to find joy in reading and writing. She is a divorced mother of two incredibly strong girls who can be found watching The Voice, eating ice cream, and staying up late reading. Katie and her girls love exploring St. Louis-hiking and playing at local parks, getting away to Pere Marquette, breakfasting at Strange Donuts or The Barn, and learning at all of the museums.
an open bird cage hanging from the ceiling with a bird inside, looking at the open door

An Open Letter to My Tween Daughter

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Dearest Tween,    It has been hard lately, hasn’t it? It seems like there are more disagreements and less patience by the day. You’ve gotten more sassy, and I’ve gotten more stubborn, and that combination has...
a mom and her daughters with curlers in their hair as they put cucumbers on each other's faces

“Yes Day” Movie Review: A Mom’s Point of View

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Fun Sponge. That’s what my kids call me. And I get it. I say no a lot. Like Jennifer Garner’s character in her new movie Yes Day, my kids see me as a dictator,...

Random Acts of Kindness Day

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    Kindness matters. Think about the time when someone held the door for you, or the time someone in front of you paid for your Starbucks, or the time it snowed, and you came out...
a woman standing on a cloud mountain with stars swirling around her

Reclaiming the Future, my Hopes, and my Dreams

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Reclaiming the future means giving wings to the dreams you forgot that you had.   Nearly eight years ago, my world was turned upside down. I had a 6-month-old and a 2-year-old, an alcoholic husband, a...
a silver christmas tree cookie cutter with walnuts and cinnamon sticks

The Cookie Tradition: Another Casualty of the Pandemic

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I love the magic of Christmastime and the joy of all of our family traditions. From putting up our tree and talking about where and when we got each ornament, to the joy of...
a minivan parked in a driveway with the trunk open and groceries in the back

Three Stores Worth the Stops for Groceries: Take Note!

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When is more time in the car worth it? When these three grocery stores are on your list!   As moms, it seems like there’s never enough time. We are spending so much time working, driving...
a daughter laying with her head in her mom's lap as the mom sits propped up in bed

The Gift I Gave My Girls: Knowing When to Ask for Help

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“Mama, I want to talk to Holly,” my daughter said as I snuggled next to her while tucking her in. She’d been having trouble with our move and was still feeling uneasy at bedtime....

When Running Away Looks an Awful Lot Like Running Towards Home

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Running away can often be a plea to be lured back home.     “Come get me, mama,” she dared, arms crossed across her chest, a full block away from me. “What?!” I was mad. It was 8:30...

Becoming a Mother, Moment by Moment: A Journey to Motherhood

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Physically, I became a mother on my 30th birthday. I hadn’t had Braxton-Hicks contractions before that day, and so when I woke up with contractions, I was pretty sure that’s what was going on....
chocolate easter bunny with jelly beans and colored eggs in a brown easter basket in the grass

Easter Crafts: Bunnies, Chicks, and Lambs, Oh My!

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Enjoy making these adorable Easter crafts with your kids, to help celebrate at home! When we were first advised to consider social distancing sometime before Spring Break, a wise friend suggested we not forget that...