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About Carrie Willard

Carrie Willard lives in Houston, Texas, with her husband, two young sons, and three ridiculous dogs. She is a recovering lawyer, clergy spouse, clergy kid, food and cooking aficionada, musical theater junkie, anxious mess, redeemed sinner, and blogger at curessa.wordpress.com. Her family attends Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church in Houston.

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Author Archive
    
    Dog Is My Copilot

    Dog Is My Copilot

    ’Tis the season for pet blessings! Churches everywhere are celebrating the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi (Oct. 4), that famed lover of animals, by blessing their congregants’ furry friends. Our family are dog people, and we always bring a dog or two to the pet blessing at our church. My husband and I had […]

    "Mark Yourself as Safe"

    “Mark Yourself as Safe”

    Greetings from the heart of Houston, and the heart of Hurricane Harvey. For the past few mornings, I’ve woken up, glanced at my phone and the multiple flash flood warnings that came through overnight, and scrolled through a few dozen pictures of whatever fresh hell visited my city the night before. Then, I write some […]

    The Tempest of Ancestry.com

    The Tempest of Ancestry.com

    I can talk to just about anyone about just about anything. Gallbladder surgery. Grandchildren’s precociousness. Train schedules. Weather patterns. But, I do have one achilles’ heel: ancestry narratives. As soon as someone starts talking about their third great-grandfather’s cousin twice removed, and how that person fought in the battle of Waterloo, my eyes glaze over […]

    Riding Shotgun: On Being the Clergy-Adjacent

    Riding Shotgun: On Being the Clergy-Adjacent

    I was hauling a giant luggage container, the kind that attaches to a car roof, across my driveway with the woman who bought it from me on craigslist. It wasn’t heavy, but it was awkward and large, and we were having a bit of a hard time maneuvering it. It was dark outside, and we […]

    Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and the Motherhood Cure

    Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and the Motherhood Cure

    I’ve recently started reading the Mrs. Piggle Wiggle books to my 6-year-old. I picked them up because I remembered reading them when I was in elementary school, and because we could all use a little bit of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle in our lives. If you’re not familiar with the books, Mrs. Piggle Wiggle was created […]

    The Law of Minimalism and the Idolatry of Sparking Joy

    The Law of Minimalism and the Idolatry of Sparking Joy

    In the fall of 2014, I had just completed a cross-country move after a cross-city move with my husband and two small children. After those moves, we got a puppy, which destroyed anything that didn’t make it through those first moves, and we also said goodbye to diapers and pacifiers in that same year. We […]

    Cringe-Watching <i>Catastrophe</i>

    Cringe-Watching Catastrophe

    For the last few weeks at bedtime, my youngest son has requested that I read him a story out of a book called “Farmyard Tales.” These are innocuous little stories of Apple Tree Farm, and the family who lives there. They are sweet and lovely, and also criminally boring. They are perfect bedtime stories for […]

    Mama Holy's Handbag

    Mama Holy’s Handbag

    The New York Times recently published an article about the physiological and psychological changes that happen to women when they become mothers. This reminded me of a conversation I had with my son when he was in preschool about irreversible change, when he was learning about tadpoles and caterpillars. “When you became a mommy,” he […]

    And the Rough Places Plain

    And the Rough Places Plain

    I’m not unfamiliar with the general decay of the human body. My dad was a priest and a hospice chaplain, and my family didn’t shy away from having elderly or sick relatives stay with us as they reached the end of their lives. I was born with only two grandparents, my mother’s parents having died when […]

    And of Thine Own Have We Given Thee

    And of Thine Own Have We Given Thee

    Recently, the Facebook page for my Wisconsin hometown’s history has exploded with photos. There are 19th century photos of the town, including charming photos of tree-lined streets and horse-drawn carriages, and also the town’s darker history, including an “Indian School,” where Native American children were taken to assimilate to white culture after being removed from […]

    <i>Hallelujah Anyway</i>: Anne Lamott's Latest on Rediscovering Mercy

    Hallelujah Anyway: Anne Lamott’s Latest on Rediscovering Mercy

    I have loved Anne Lamott since I read her first memoir, Traveling Mercies, when I was in law school. In a world where I was, quite literally, surrounded by law, I heard grace in her words, and it was the drink I didn’t even know I was thirsty for. Later, Lamott’s Operating Instructions, her memoir about her son’s […]

    What Once Was Lost

    What Once Was Lost

    I have two older sisters who both grew up to be teachers. They are about ten years older than I am, and we lived in a very rural part of Wisconsin, and there was no cable or internet at our house. In other words, we had a lot of time on our hands, and my […]