This week I was working on a project and I was trying to remember the name of a post that I’d wrote back when burlap was still a thing and I hadn’t discovered Mellow Mushroom Pizza yet.

To try and find it I searched for lessons on the blog.

I thought I’d find one or maybe two posts with that in the title.


Not even close.

There was a post for almost every month of the year.  Apparently I’m all about a good lesson and I didn’t even know it.  But in the middle of all that lessoning, one post stood out.  It’s all about learning to live with mice and glass slippers.

Here are my favorite life lessons learned from Cinderella. 🙂

This past week one of the twins was watching the movie Cinderella.

For the 5,216 time.

Not the cartoon version, but the new version that came out several months ago with the blue dress and Cate Blanchett and the girl from Downton Abbey and the prince with the twinkling eyes.

When I walked through the room she asked me to watch it with her, I inwardly rolled my eyes and sighed.  I told her normally I would love to watch it, but I had a million things to do and besides….

….I already knew how it ended.

And then I thought about how not-truly important those things were and that one day she would be driving around in a car with a bunch of teenagers and spending hours putting on make-up and deciding what to wear and the house would be empty and I would wish I had pushed the pause button and watched a little more Cinderella along the way.

So I plopped down with a cup of coffee and watched the movie and surprisingly, eye-openingly, amazingly learned a few life lessons along the way.

So here’s a few more pictures I took of the farmhouse decorated for fall….

….and a little bit of Cinderella wisdom.

5.  Be kind

Especially to animals.

They have feelings, too.

And besides, you never know when you’re going to need those mice to pull your carriage.

4.  Have courage

I know your stepmother looks scary in an oddly beautiful way and your stepsisters wear matching dresses, bad attitudes and totally random hairstyles.

I get it.

But one day you’ll be at a ball with an apprentice who turns out to be a prince and your waist will be eighteen inches and your dress will be sweeping and your hair will be sparkly and the ball will stop because of you and your amazing self.

And you’ll have the courage to dance like a princess.

3.  Know how to rock a bad hair day

When life gets a little overwhelming and your stepmother made you clean the floors and live in the attic and you can’t take it any more so you run away, make sure you ride the white horse and stumble across the prince in the forest.

Ignore the fact that you’re in a torn gown with soot on your face and a really bad hair day.

None of that matters.

True beauty comes from within.

2.  Always help others in need

If an old lady with a scarf around her head and glittery eyes comes to your fountain and extends a gnarled hand toward you and asks for water….

….ask if she wants some dinner, too.

You never know.

It could be your fairy godmother in disguise.

And make sure you have some pumpkins lying around in case she wants to turn one of them into a carriage.

1.  Be true to who you are

This is perhaps the most important life lesson of all and one of the hardest to remember.

You are unique.

And special.

And brilliant.


There is only one incredible, amazing, wonderful you.

And when the prince shows up with a glass slipper and you’re sitting at the attic window singing and you want to run and greet him and slide that glass slipper on your foot and ride away to the castle, but the last time you saw him you were in a ballgown with sparkly hair and now you’re rocking bare feet and a servant’s gown….

….simply shake your soot covered hair and hold your head high.

And greet the world like a princess. 🙂

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  1. Image for Julie Blanner Julie Blanner

    I just watched it again last week myself, so many lessons to be learned. I love the quote "have courage and be mind". It's the simplest words that can get us through almost anything. This lesson is so beautifully written, KariAnne, I always appreciate your positive perspective. Happy Monday!

  2. Image for june june

    Love this. You have such a way to put words in to reality. You are so right about stopping your world and spending time with your daughter. Poof and she will be out of the house as well as your other kids. A new season to look forward to with an empty nest but for now as a mom who would do anything to be washing stinky socks and football clothes capture these special moments as much as you can.

  3. Image for Sharon H Sharon H

    Miz karianne, the way you can pick out the positives in most any given situation, and then write about them, is just one of the many things I love about you and your blog! Well done, rock star!

  4. Image for Cecilia Cecilia

    Love those Cinderella lessons. Why does it take us so long to embrace the last one? God made us unique on purpose. What a boring world it would be if we were all alike! PS Glad you stopped and watched the movie with your girl. That is another of those lessons we need to learn ! Hugs Cecilia

  5. Image for Hedy Hahn Hedy Hahn

    Love your prose, you definitely should write a book. My daughter grew up so fast, in a blink she was gone. Sure wish I had her here with me now.

  6. Image for terry cross terry cross

    Can you believe I haven't watched it yet? Sounds like it's worth brewing a cup of coffee and putting my feet up for a few minutes! Thanks sweetie for the encouraging post!

  7. Image for Mimi Mimi

    So beautifully written...thank you as always for knowing just what we need to know! Where can I find the sign, " I hope you dance..."?

  8. Image for Michelle Michelle

    I've got some catching up to do! I've always loved the Cinderella story and the lessons you pulled from it are right on point. But taking time out to spend with family paramount to all those lessons, even if you aren't exactly thrilled at first with the activity. Some of my biggest regrets are the times I thought something else was more important. Never.

  9. Image for Marisa Franca @ All Our Way Marisa Franca @ All Our Way

    I love your wisdom! I hope these tidbits are in your book so when I'm feeling confused and very trod upon I'll open your book and read a chapter. Your words never fail to move me in some way! That is an enormous talent, KariAnne! Just think, one of these days The Thistles will be quoting their mom. Have a wonderful day!! ?

  10. Image for Peg Peg

    I'm so happy you changed your mind and embraced the moment with your daughter. In the blink of an eye they're gone! Thank you for this. Love, love!!

  11. Image for Bonnie Bonnie

    Thanks KariAnne. That was a beautiful movie that I saw when it first came out. This post makes me want to see it again.

  12. Image for Cindy Richter Cindy Richter

    I totally needed to read this post this morning. We had a bad hail storm here last night and everything looks broken. But today, I'm going to find the positive things and have that positive outlook. Oh, and go give my last (of 3) kiddo a great big hug and ask if she wants to watch Cinderella. Out of all the new remakes, she said it was her favorite.

  13. Image for mary mary

    Burlap isn't a thing any more???? It's taken me this long to elevate it from wrapping tender plants for winter protection to buying a way too expensive runner for my kitchen island! Wonderful post by the way.

  14. Image for Sherry Sherry

    I lost my beautiful daughter-Princess to anxiety/depression induced suicide last year....I read to her a lot...watched When Harry Met Sally many times.....I'd give everything I have for one more movie. Thank you, karianne, for this gentle reminder.❤️

  15. Image for Charlotte Lindsay Charlotte Lindsay

    Such great life tips and even better home decor! There is always so much going on it is hard to remember to unplug and be kind to ourselves and others, love when we get reminders. Thanks for giving me one today!

  16. Image for Sandi Magle Sandi Magle

    This just made me smile. I've been blessed with a 69-year old husband, who loves to watch romantic, teary movies....and I'm sure their must be a 'Cinderella' quote somewhere for me too. Um, yes and 'live happily ever after!' This was an adorable post---worth putting in its own folder to be resurrected, when it's a bad hair day or too many clouds, or mice.

  17. Image for Marilyn Marilyn

    I have never seen the new "Cinderella". I have seen the original and Cinderella is my favorite Fairy Tale. Marilyn

  18. Image for Sharon Warren Sharon Warren

    How about a series of life lessons from fairy tales? These were all read to my children as bedtime stories, and nap time, or anytime they would sit still long enough, and we talked about the lessons they taught, and the attributes of the characters, and the outcome of the stories. Amazingly, as little ones, they totally got it. Now my little ones are grown with tweeners, and teens of their own. What I wouldn't give for them to be little again, and eager to listen to life lessons from a fairy tale.

  19. Image for Marijean Jenson Marijean Jenson

    I love this and I love you for being the amazing writer and person you are. You always conjure up so many emotions in me!

  20. Image for Kathleen Kathleen

    KariAnne, It's so beautiful to hear that you stopped and watched the movie with your sweet twin ... even more so that she *asked* you! She won't forget you took the time, or your discussions, I bet! But about that "burlap" line ... please tell me you're not serious!? If you are, I'll be "eating" a bit of merchandise that I'd stashed for this year's Holiday sales ... more than I actually care to think about =(. Really?! Hugs! kj

  21. Image for Annisa Annisa

    Speaking of pizza...Mellow Mushroom is so good! I make a knock-off Mellow Mushroom pizza dough recipe that is everything pizza dreams are made of. Seriously. It's sooo close! Molasses and garlic butter are the secret ingredients.

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