Category Archives: MARRIAGE & FAMILY

Our Favourite Christmas Traditions

December 5, 2015


Over the past few years, Clark and I have been establishing our own Christmas traditions as a family. We really wanted Christmas to reflect who were as a couple; a day full of joy, love, comfort and absolutely no-stress. Our traditions are simple, but here’s a few things we do to make the day reflect us!

Christmas morning traditions

Christmas Eve Gifts

As a kid my family didn’t open any gifts on Christmas Eve, and Clark received the classic PJ’s as a kid. Since we’re not really pyjama people, we decided that on Christmas Eve we would get each other a “comfy outfit” we could wear as we lounged together the next day. It’s become one of my favourite things on Christmas morning to roll out of bed and throw on my comfy outfit for the day. It’s no secret that right now I’m loving these crew neck sweaters by Province of Canada! They just introduced a few new designs and I currently have my eyes on this oneThey’ve also got these awesome wool socks, which instantly bring the coziness! You can’t go wrong with them! You find the sweater from this pic here, and the socks here

Comfy Christmas Mornings with Province of Canada

Stockings in Bed

It’s really important to us to take time to just be together on Christmas morning. On Christmas Eve, we stuff our stockings and put them at the foot of the bed so when the morning comes, we can reach down and grab our stockings and open them in bed together. Stockings are my favourite part of the day.

Part of our stocking is a thoughtful card we select and take time to write it for one another. We consider our stockings a major part of our gift giving and spend time and money on making them awesome. I love see the little things Clark picks out for me, and I love finding little things for him! It’s become a great connecting point for us!

Canada Hockey Card

This is the card I’m putting in his stocking this year (Clark, if you see, act surprised). You can find it here if you want to grab one for your favourite somebody!

Christmas Traditions

Warm Breakfast

After we’ve finished unpacking our stockings we head to the kitchen and take our time making coffee, tea, and a warm breakfast we can sit down and enjoy together. We’ll either make homemade waffles, or an oatmeal bake, but it allows us to relax and enjoy each other before we even touch the gifts beneath the tree. 

More than the turkey dinner or the presents under the tree, I’ve come to appreciate the quiet moments we share together before the day really begins. 

Wool Socks

I absolutely cherish the stress-free moments when we’re not rushing to be somewhere or get something done. Christmas for us is about being together without a schedule or an agenda and I love it!

What are some of your traditions that help to bring joy and rest to you and your fam?


February 2, 2015


Well it’s already February and that means that I’m one month into my resolutions for 2015 (You can read my New Years Resolution post here)! I’ve set a number of goals for 2015, but I decided to let the world in on 3 resolutions that I was striving to achieve! 


My plan was to begin training for a half marathon as soon as I finished my treatment, but I decided after I posted my goals that I was going to do everything I could to start training now. Why wait? Unfortunately a relapse early in January left me exhausted, extremely dizzy, and barely able to walk, let alone run. However, I started to feel better this past week and I was beyond excited to get out for my first run since October 2014! Clark came with me and we decided that I would just try and go for as long as I could. My expectations were not high. I think we were both surprised when I was still running after 5km! Since our running route allows us to add in additional 2.2km laps around a small lake, I decided I would try to push myself and see how many I could do. So, here it is… I did 9km!!! 9km!!! There was a time when that was a normal run for me, but that definitely has not been the case since being diagnosed with MS. Come on, somebody celebrate with me! Half-marathon, here I come! 



I don’t have a structured plan for exactly what I’m going do each month, but my goal is to make sure I’m always doing and experiencing new things! My “new things” for January made me feel like a true Canadian! I drove a snowmobile for the first time, went curling on a frozen pond, and had an outdoor picnic around a fire on a frozen lake! I hadn’t done any of these things before, and I can’t believe it took me until I was 30 to try them! To be honest, I didn’t even know people had outdoor picnics in the winter! I hate being cold, but I learned that enough layers could make even me ready for an outdoor Canadian winter! 



I am loving ready through the Bible this way. Ok, I wasn’t loving it so much when I was stuck listening to Job’s friends give terrible advice for the entire first week of January, but the rest, I love. I’ve read all of Genesis and Job, and I’ve recently started Exodus. I decided to do my reading every night right before bed, so no matter how tired or how sick I feel, I refuse to sleep without opening my Bible. It’s been good for me. Not always easy, but good! Clark is doing this along with me, so we’ve enjoyed being able to talk about it as we go. (You can find the reading plan I’m following here.)

Can’t wait to see what February brings! 


January 8, 2015


I recently shared my own personal story of MS. If you haven’t read it yet, you can read part one here and part two here. Here’s part three:


In the opening verses of Genesis it says “the earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters” (Gen 1:2). At the beginning of creation, even before there was light, the Sprit was moving. God was there. There are many moments in my own life when things feel dark and formless, but I know that even in the unseen, He is not absent. He is there, moving in ways I can’t even comprehend. 

I had just heard from the insurance company, “I’m sorry Ms. Moran, but we will not be covering your drugs.” I was shocked. I mean, we live in Canada, a country with amazing health care. How is this even possible?

I sat hunched over in my kitchen chair sobbing. I couldn’t even control it. I felt more heartbroken then I did when I was diagnosed. What was I supposed to do now? I called Clark and sent a quick text message to a couple close friends. “Please pray. Insurance denied me coverage. I’m so sad.” And I just sat and cried as the words of Steady Heart by Steffany Gretzinger played in the background. “My eyes can’t see what’s in front me, still I will trust.” (You can listen to the song here.)

I felt so strongly like God kept saying to me, “Just trust me. I have a better way.” If there was anyone observing me that afternoon I probably looked crazy. I was in the house alone but I was speaking out loud to God. “God, I’m trying. I don’t know how right now,” I kept saying over and over again. “I’m trying.” 

Steady Heart continued to play, “Though the sky is dark and the wind is wild, You’ll never leave me. Though the night is long, there is a coming dawn. The light is breaking.”

At that moment the dark cloudy sky broke and a beam of sunshine flooded my work area. I just knew that He was working something out that was bigger than me. 

The sun breaking through the clouds on Dec 12th

I was so in awe when the sun broke through the clouds on Dec 12th, I snapped a picture. 

“God, I will trust you.”

A few hours later I received a text from a friend, “Can I come over for a few minutes. I need to talk to you quickly.” Sure. If you don’t mind my swollen eyes, and disheveled appearance, come on over! 

She sat down across the room and began to tell her that a couple had heard about my MS and that I was denied coverage by insurance. News travels fast. She was there on behalf of them to tell us that they would commit to covering the cost of the treatment! $80 000! EIGHTY THOUSAND DOLLARS! Cue the tears.

I was overwhelmed. Relieved. Grateful. I could hardly breathe. 

She continued to tell us that they knew all about Lemtrada and recognized that I was a prime candidate. “Money shouldn’t prevent her from getting the treatment she needs.” Wow. For months this story had been unfolding behind the scenes and none of us had any idea. God was clearly working in the unseen. 

I’ve never been the recipient of such extreme generosity, and I can’t even describe how it feels. I know that God is good and I know He cares about me, but being the recipient of a financial miracle makes me more grateful than I’ll ever be able to communicate with words. “God, I don’t know what else to say except thank you.” 

A couple days later we received another phone call from another couple who wanted to help cover the costs of treatment. We joyously shared our miracle with them, explaining that the cost of treatment was already covered, but they explained that they still felt compelled to contribute. Again we witnessed God working in the unseen as they pledged to help cover some of the extra medical costs we would incur over the next year. Even the smallest details were taken care of. Again, I was left speechless. There are days I’m still speechless. 

Clark & I the day we received our second phone call pledging to cover our extra expenses.

Clark & I the day we received our second phone call pledging to cover our extra expenses.

I’ve since completed all my pre-screening tests to ensure that I’m a candidate for Lemtrada and I’m currently awaiting a phone call to receive my transfusion dates. I’m ecstatic. 

There are definitely moments when MS is hard. Some days I’m frustrated with my body and there are moments when I’m fearful of the future. This week I’m in the middle of another relapse. My energy and strength have been bleak and Tuesday morning I lost almost all hearing in my left ear (hearing loss only occurs in less than 5% of people with MS. Lucky me!). I’m hopeful that it will come back in the next month, but this is my life. I wish sickness and disease didn’t exist in the world, but I’m grateful that over the last six months I’ve been able to see God at work in my life in ways that I can’t explain. In the darkness, even when I can’t see Him, He is there. 

In the Unwelcome. In the Unknown. In the Unseen. 

In Everything, He is there. 

This is my story. 



January 3, 2015

MARRIAGE & FAMILY / Uncategorized

Today is a special day for me. It’s the day I get to celebrate the most amazing man I know, my husband Clark. I couldn’t imagine my life without him in it. He makes me laugh until my ribs hurt and he has a way of making me feel like the most important person in the room no matter where we are. Honestly, he’s amazing. 

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Being married to him has taught me so much about sacrificial love, support, communication and joy. We absolutely love that our lives are intertwined and we have the chance to travel and do ministry together every single day. 

Clark, you are the best man I know. You love people deeply and allow God to transform your heart in the most amazing ways. You’ve grown so much in wisdom and discipline in the last year and I’m constantly amazed how God uses you. Thanks for always putting my needs above your own. You should totally keep doing that. I love you. Happy 31st Birthday!!!

(This photo was taken by the extremely talented Luke Liable of Luke Liable Photography.)