About the Author

Mary is a writer and speaker who lives for good books, spicy queso, and television marathons – but lives because of God’s grace. She writes about giving up on perfect and finding truth in unexpected places at MaryCarver.com. Mary and her husband live in Kansas City with their two daughters.

(in)side DaySpring: things we love
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(in)side DaySpring:
things we love
& you will too!
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Reader Interactions


  1. Thank you, Mary! Your words are a wonderful reminder to enjoy what we can this time of year, keeping our gaze on Jesus as the ultimate comforter. For me, comforting traditions involve a fire, our Jesse tree and my youngest son moving the wise men to all sorts of places around our house as they try to find our crib. Thanks again.

  2. Mary,
    Holiday movies have been my favorite way of escaping this stressful year! I’m definitely going to check out your holiday movie site. I really love reading anything you write. You always seem to know what I need to hear. Thank you for helping me through these tough times.
    God bless you!

  3. Mary, this is exactly what I need today! Thank you so much. With my house only minimally decorated and our Christmas tree still in the back of the truck, your words are just what I needed today. I am not a “made for TV” holiday movie fan. But I do love “made for theater” holiday movies. I have about a dozen dvd’s of them. They are always part of my Christmas routine. Thanks for giving the okay to indulge. Love and blessings to you, dear one!

  4. I love holiday movies, it helps me because since June 16, 2017, the holiday season is rough and movies give joy. Because the Lord took my beloved to his eternal home.

    • Gail, I’m so sorry for your loss. I’m grateful you’ve found something that gives you some joy during a difficult season, and I pray the movies (or whatever “comfort food” you find this year) can gently lead you to our God who promises to be with the brokenhearted.

  5. I must confess that the Hallmark channel is my go to channel when I need a break from life. Sometimes you just need to have a happy ending.

    So I say along with the rest of you, do what you need to to get through as long as you keep Christ as your center and your focus.
    Merry Christmas our King is born!!!

  6. Mary,

    This year has been challenging for my hubby & I. We both work in hospitals. There have been so many changes from shutting my unit down to moving to a different floor, etc. Many people have left the hospital where hubby works (as CT tech). We are not big on holidays-no children & parents gone. This year more than ever I am listening to good Christian music. Three songs I love are “It’s Called Christmas with a Capital C” & “It’s About the Cross” both by Go Fish & “Leaving Heaven” by Matthew West. Hearing those songs makes me realize the true meaning of the Christmas Holiday. You are so right about keeping life as normal as possible. Do the fun things you enjoy. Always remembering that Christmas is about the birth of a Savior. The one who left the splendor of Heaven to come to broken earth & save us from our sins.

    Praying everyone has a blessed & happy Christmas.

    Blessings 🙂

    • Beth, I’m sorry this year has been so hard for you and your husband. Praying you find peace and joy this season (and going to listen to those songs you mentioned!). Merry Christmas!

  7. Thank you So much for this awesome incouraging timely word!!!So freeing and yes I will be going to find your list of Christmas movies and other joys you so freely give out regularly! Merry Joyous Christmas to you and your family !!With Warm Wishes and Prayers, Chris

  8. This season is such a bittersweet time for me… I LOVE Jesus and Christmas time… it has taken me years to get to a place where I can say that with a heart of JOY. I lost my older brother to suicide on Christmas Eve many years ago. I try not to dwell on the loss but there are days when it is just so overwhelming. God has been so good to me by filling my heart/soul with his love, comfort and peace. I hold the good memories of my brohter in my heart and light a remembrance candle on the 24th. Merry Christmas, may the Lord bless you in the year ahead.