Archives for March 2016


So it begins. A new Blog. A New Manifesto.


I am 36 years old living in a moment of rebellion. The changing tide of cultural standards, political challenges, and insecurities mixed with unrealized potential and at times a loss in faith has me at a crossroads.

Pretty Girl, what are you going to do with the rest of your years?



  • A feather, especially one that is large or ornamental
  • Something that resembles a plume: a plume of smoke
  • A token or decoration of honor; prize
  • A feather or cluster of feathers worn especially formerly as a badge or ornament in a headband, hat, etc.

My Tribe, the people that walk and breathe with me, they are my lifeblood. From my family to my team at work, these relationships hold some of my most treasured moments. These moments are the decorations of honor that will endure after my life is over. My heart is driven to become a thought leader in loving people well.

The leader of my tribe the sweet man I married plays a prominent role in my days. We are 8 years into this thing called marriage and continue to focus on finding ways to meet each other with fresh eyes.

In the Bible (Exodus 13: 21-22) we learn that The Israelites followed a pillar of cloud by day, and a pillar of fire by night in the desert. As I struggle with my own desert of infertility, my relationship with my Lord continues to strengthen when I focus on his consistent unending love and hope.

And the occasional chicken feather. If you spend any time with me at all you will quickly learn of my affinity for chickens. Spending just moments with our girls, stops the constant list of to-do’s and noise in my head. Watching them with their single focus gives me the permission to focus singly on one thing, life. The singularly beautiful gift of life.


Noun, plural tallies.

  • An account or reckoning; a record of debit and credit, of the score of a game, or the like.
  • a notch or mark made on or in a tally
  • A number or group of items recorded.

As a third generation project manager. There is nothing that soothes my soul more than organizing a list of tasks and checking it off. I have a passion for using the same techniques that I use at work, in my personal life to provide a foundation of order.

Photography, capturing moments from behind the shutter of the camera has added such delight to my world. The ability to relive in laughter and tears and give account of my memories is a gift.

Like the Quills used by the writers from generations before us, I am reminded that each of our lives, and the stories they tell matter. This is why I write!

As I share this journey, my hope is that others will find confidence and joy in their own.

Welcome to Plume and Tally!

A special thanks to Jeff Goins and his encouragement and challenge to become a more confident writer.


What he wants you to know…March 2016 Edition


Have you ever wanted points of interest for conversations on a date night with your husband or boyfriend? Do you every wonder what his brain in all of its manly glory is thinking? Are you wishing for connection and intimacy. These thoughts were contributed by my  favorite man and husband Ryan Schaaf. Some of these offer a more personal look to our relationship, others could solve many a marital turmoil. I believe each of them could be used as examples for opportunities to find relationship with that man of yours. 

  1. You are better at finding things than I am. Sometimes superiority is both a blessing and a burden. So just embrace it all.
  2. You need to learn how to switch input modes on the TV. I have taught you, many times, but it has always been a sort of exercise that is not unlike trying to spoon-feed strained peas to a toddler.
  3. The stovetop is very difficult to clean. When you stir the mashed potatoes, pretend that the house will catch fire if you spill any of it. Also, I may or may not set the house on fire instead of cleaning up.
  4. You shouldn’t get mad at me for “obsessing with my phone” while I am writing something for your blog.
  5. I will never ridicule you for laughing at jokes that you’ve already heard me tell a thousands times before.
  6. F-A-V-O-R-I-T-E. That is how you spell favorite. (I do think it is unfortunate that every synonym for that word is so impractical for context.)
  7. I’d go to the movies more often if you didn’t insist on me staying awake.
  8. Even though I complain about it, I’m sometimes glad that you don’t spool the toilet paper because you do it wrong.
  9. Those moments where you fuss over me when I have nothing to offer you besides abject dependence are among my fondest memories of us.
  10. Please, for the love of all that is holy, pick something to eat. When you shoot down my first and second suggestions, I’m not making any others.