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Category Archives: The UnWired Mom

The UnWired Mom Link-Up! (How’s The Challenge Going For You?)



Tell me, are you still doing the challenge? It’s tough to stick with something, I know. If you’ve stuck with the challenge, good for you! I can’t wait to hear how it’s going! If you’ve had some trouble, or thrown in the towel, or have just been busy, I get it. No worries, but might I encourage you to keep going? Just pick up where you are and keep on. I promise you that if you commit, you will see a change in your life for the better. I really believe that.

Okay, here’s my update. First things first…

My “Why”:

I don’t want to regret my life. I want to live full and whole and present, even in the mundane, because it’s where God has placed me. I want to be aware of my time and how I’m spending it; I want serve God with my life. I want to pass “real life” onto my children; I don’t want them wired. I want to build strong relationships with my family and the people around me. I don’t want to be a slave to anything, because I am free.

That was the “why” I put in the eBook, and it’s still true. However, I don’t see my life as mundane anymore. I love my life and I am the happiest and content I’ve been in about four years. I have slowly taken things off my plate and have chosen to keep the proverbial plate nearly empty. My priorities right now are in nurturing my marriage, raising my kids, being hospitable, getting to know my neighbors better, and writing my book. And this is enough. It’s a good enough, too, and it’s full and good and I’m at peace.

I am living my life, and I know that if I keep on this trajectory, not getting side-tracked, I will be able to look back on my life in 15-20 years and say, “I’m happy with how I lived; I lived well.” I couldn’t say that a year ago, but I can say it confidently now. Thank God, truly, because He’s the One who made it clear that I would regret my life if I stayed on the path I was on, doing too much. I am quite content to just keep close to my family and my community and do some writing. I really believe in what Sally said to me a few years ago: “We really need women who will do the work now with their families so they have something to say later.” Yes, please, let that be me. I want to have something real to say later, after I’ve “done the work” of loving my man, raising my babes, and serving the people who God has put around me.

I’m not bragging, I’m just…grateful to have woken up to my own life.

Alright friends, your turn. How’s it going? Tell me about it! Feel free to link-up a post about your experience (good, bad, or in-between) below. Make sure to link directly to your post. If you don’t have a blog, just leave a comment!

Love, SM

To get your copy of The UnWired Mom, just CLICK HERE for the PDF or if you would like to get the Kindle version, click HERE.


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The UnWired Mom 14-Day Challenge Begins TODAY!


Today we begin the challenge to really live the life we’ve been given.

We’re choosing to be intentional, to be free, to enjoy life, and to not let the Internet master us. We know that our lives matter, our time matters, and the souls in our care need us present and fully alive. And really, don’t we want to live full and engage in the life all around us? I don’t want to regret my life, and I know I will never look back and say, “I’m glad I spent all that time online.”

Now listen, I am not down on the Internet. I am thankful for it! I love being able to connect with people around the world. I love being able to write here and publish my words and interact with you all. I love ordering books and reaching across divides and learning and helping others through these invisible wires. The Internet is a good thing. But. It can be highly addictive. It can be used as an escape. It can rule our lives if we don’t choose how we really want to live our lives.

With all that said, let’s begin, shall we? First things first, to know how the challenge will go down, please click HERE (this post has all the deets including link-up dates)! Important: I will not be blogging the challenges each day. I will post a blog with a linky on Friday the 16th and Friday the 23rd where you can share how the challenge has been going.

Here are the challenge titles for each day:

Day 1: Stronger With a Friend

Day 2: Write Out Your Why

Day 3: Set Up Internet Controls

Day 4: 10-15 Years From Now

Day 5: Prepare for Time Offline

Day 6: An UnWired Day

Day 7: Don’t Judge

Day 8: Your Ideal Day

Day 9: Your Realistic Day

Day 10: Interview Your Kids

Day 11: Get Together with an “in-the-flesh” friend

Day 12: Goals & Priorities

Day 13: Set Realistic Perimeters For Your Babes

Day 14: Have Purpose

In the eBook each day includes a bit of encouragement, a challenge, an “engage your life” idea, and a journal exercise. If you don’t have a copy of The UnWired Mom – Choosing to Live Free in an Internet Addicted World, you can get it as a PDF for 50% off (making it only $2.50) by going HERE and using code: CHALLENGE. If you don’t want a PDF, you can get the eBook on Kindle for only $4.99 HERE.

The UnWired Mom Challenge is not a stay-off-your-computer-for-two-weeks challenge. It’s a challenge to help you try and break some habits and come up with a vision for living free and whole and un-addicted while still enjoying the benefits of the Internet.

Let’s get started building those good Internet habits! Link-up a post about your joining the challenge and link it below! No blog? Just leave a comment letting us know you’re in!

Love, SM

P.S. You can read the Table of Contents from The UnWired Mom by clicking here.

P.P.S. Here is a button you can use if you’d like:


Link the button to this post please so others can join!

Related: Join the UnWired Mom Challenge

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Join The UnWired Mom Challenge!


“Because this business of becoming conscious…is ultimately about asking yourself, How alive am I willing to be?” –Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

Do you say you’ll only pop online for “5 minutes” but end up being on an hour (or more)?

Do you have trouble going to sleep because you keep checking Facebook?

Do you wish you could be more disciplined with how you spend your time?

Do you want to be fully present with your life and the lives of those around you?

Do you want to not regret your life?

I have heard from so many of you about the lure of the Internet and how you just want to be free of being on it all the time. You want to live a full, in-the-present, intentional life, one that you won’t look back on in regret. I hear you! Most of you know that I struggled with being online too much, and I’ve had to make major changes in order to live the life I really wanted to live. And friends, I’m doing it. I’m living true, and I love my life now.

I wrote The UnWired Mom to encourage others to kick their online addiction habits to the curb and start engaging and enjoying their real, in-the-flesh, lives. The goal wasn’t (and isn’t) to stay offline and never use the Internet. The goal is to use the Internet for what is is: a tool. I am thankful for the Internet, but I control my use of it, it doesn’t control me.

And it doesn’t have to control you or your time.

If you want to make a change in your life, if you want to put the Internet in its proper place so you can be free to really live your life true and without an arc of regret, than consider joining me in the two-week UnWired Challenge. It is not a stay-off-your-computer-for-two-weeks challenge. It’s a challenge to help you try and break some habits and come up with a vision for living free and whole and un-addicted while still enjoying the benefits of the Internet.

How the Challenge Will Go Down

The challenge is 14 days long and will start tomorrow (Thursday).

Each day there will be a small bit of encouragement along with a challenge, an “embrace your life” idea, and a journal exercise. These are all in the eBook (I won’t be blogging them each day).

I will put a linky up on my blog tomorrow for those who are joining the challenge and have a blog. You may link up with it only if you write a post about being a part of it (link directly to your post, please). I have found that if I just let people link up their blogs and not a specific post it gets confusing.

We will journal each day in a notebook (paper!) and on Friday the 16th and Friday the 23rd I will have a linky where you can you can link up a post about your experience. If you don’t have a blog, just leave a comment those days on how it went, what you learned, best parts, worst parts, etc. Sound good?

If you don’t have a copy of The UnWired Mom – Choosing to Live Free in an Internet Addicted World, you can get it as a PDF for 50% off (making it only $2.50) by going HERE and using code: CHALLENGE. If you don’t want a PDF, you can get the eBook on Kindle for only $4.99 HERE.

My husband is going to make a cute little button for us bloggers that you can, if you’d like, put on your blog to share the challenge. He’s so great.

Okay, any questions? Did I about cover it all?

See you tomorrow!

“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
1 Corinthians 10:31

Love, SM

Related: Why I’m Giving Up My iPhone

P.S. You don’t have to be a mom to take the challenge! 😉

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I have a life-coach. For real.

sarah mae button

Today is a good day because I get to introduce you all to my life-coach.


Yep. I have one of those. Never thought I would, but I do. And can I just tell you, SHE ROCKS. For real. I’m a believer in life-coaches now, where before I was all, “Seriously, who gets a life-coach? What kind of new age junk is that?” I was, might you say, skeptical?

But THEN I realized that I was crazy and unorganized and had a so many ideas and no place for them to land and I love run-on sentences and…

So I did the normal thing.

I tweeted that I wanted a life-coach. ‘Cause that’s totally normal, right?

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Friends, meet the lovely, wonderful, kind, helpful, Carey Bailey

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Oh friends, I just LOVE HER.

She has been so helpful to me, like, life-changing helpful. She pointed out some hard truths about some of my choices, and it flipped me good.

All of this to say that I asked her if she would offer one of my readers four weeks of her life-coach services for free to celebrate the launch of The UnWired Mom, and SHE SAID YES.

{Happy dance}

Because I figure, if you’re using the Internet as an escape, or you just get sucked into being online too long, or you’re not engaging and enjoying your real life, maybe some life-coaching would do ya good.

There are other reasons to consider talking with a life-coach. According to Carey

Life coaching can…

  • help you discover what brings you joy.
  • help you make choices about how you spend your time based on your core values. (THIS THIS THIS. Um, THIS <—–Sarah Mae’s note)
  • help you create realistic priorities so your day doesn’t feel overwhelming. (Oh yea, this too!)
  • help you assess your current life satisfaction and strategize with you on how to live a whole life. (Oh, so this as well!)

If you don’t win this giveaway, you should just hire her. If you can. But try. She’s offering a 20% discount code for all life coaching packages. Just use code: UNWIRED. It will be active till 8/1/2013. WOOT! Go here, email her.

Onto the giveaway!

Just fill out the form below! Good “luck”!

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Love, SM

P.S. Life-coaching is not therapy. Although it is for me. But it’s really not, so this is the disclaimer, k?

P.P.S. The UnWired Mom hit #1 in three categories on Amazon, so THANK YOU!!!

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My Mother’s Alcoholism and My Time Online

I remember when I first realized that my mom was an alcoholic.

I was fourteen and had recently moved in with her. I had noticed her drinking beer here and there, but didn’t think much of it. My mom was the fun mom. Until she wasn’t anymore. Until she was drunk and mean and verbally abusive.

I confronted her on her drinking, naively thinking she wasn’t aware of her alcoholism and just needed an intervention.

Mom, I think you’re an alcoholic.

“So what.” She replied. And then she laughed.

There it was, and that was our life. So what. This was the way it was, get used to it.

I begged her to stop drinking, and I remembering saying to her several times, “If you loved us you would stop.”

I finally moved out of her house when I was seventeen. I couldn’t take being there anymore.

I judged my mom for many years, considering myself better than her. I remember making a vow that I would never be like her; I would never become an alcoholic, and I would never do anything to hurt my children the way she had hurt me.

“For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.” Matthew 7:2

But you know it’s interesting these vows we make, and these judgements we carry. And now that I’m a mother I can see my mom in a different light; I can see her wounds and her loneliness and not so much her cruelty.

Here is an excerpt from a post I wrote a few years ago:

I completely understand how one becomes addicted to a substance.

For me, if I were to indulge myself, that would probably be alcohol. I assume this because my mother is an alcoholic. I vowed never to be like her.

But I am.

I am like her. I’m like the her before she took the drink. I’m tired. I don’t know how to live my life. I’m overwhelmed. I love my children intensely. I have no idea, some days, how on earth I am going to parent them.

It would be easy to start with a glass of wine. A little something to numb the mundane of life.

Because I’m just so tired.

My spirit is that of a ragamuffin. I will never have it “together”…and I’ll never pretend to. In the words of Moses, I’m not eloquent of speech. I wonder why God is using me for His glory when there are so many better than I to use. But that is not really here nor there. The point is,

I’m not going to drink.

Or numb out with whatever.

I’m just going to be tired. I’m going to just walk, slowly, one day at a time as the Spirit makes me holy.

My hands are up.

All is grace.

I may not have turned to alcohol, but I did turn to another drug: the Internet.

The Internet was my escape from reality. When I was too tired, or the constant conflict between little ones got to be too much, I got online. I tuned the world around me out. So really, I’m not that much different from my mom.


I’m choosing to not stay drugged. I will not let anything master me. I am free.

Love, SM

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