Our family purpose statement, displayed (Red Letter Words giveaway)

About Tsh

Tsh is the founder of this blog and lives in Bend, Oregon with her husband and 3 kids. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.

When I first wrote about our family purpose statement, we were a younger family living in a different country. I was in the throes of depression, and we were one person short.

It’s not that we’re old hats at the parenting thing now, but I can pretty confidently say we’ve grown and wisened-up a bit in the past few years. We’ve been through a lot, and we’re a little different. More of who we were made to be.

But what’s refreshing is that I look at our purpose statement, and it still rings true. We wrote it to be as timeless as possible, while still being specific enough to be useful.

Our family purpose statement

We will:
Put each other first.
Cultivate deep relationships with one another.
Extend love to those around us.
Live simply.
Be true to who God made us.
Take care of our health.
Be good stewards of creation.
Be lifelong learners.

This summer, Dee of Red Letter Words sent us a canvas emblazoned with our purpose statement. I may or may have not teared when it arrived in the mail.

I love that her talent sits in our living room, purposed as a reminder for us to be who we are. To be the Oxenreiders.

Dee’s family purpose statement hangs in her house as well. Beautiful reminders, they are.

And this weekend, Ree would like to give a Simple Mom reader the chance to get his or her family’s purpose statement printed as a canvas as well. To remind you to be you.


To win your family’s purpose statement on a 20×30 gallery wrapped canvas print in any color from Red Letter Words, please use the widget below (if you’re reading this via email, you’ll need to click over to the blog to enter the giveaway):

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Important: Because the cost of shipping something this size is rather costly, Dee can only offer free shipping to a U.S.-based winner. If you’re outside the U.S. and are chosen as the winner, you’ll need to pay for the difference in shipping to your country. Thanks for understanding.

This giveaway will end Saturday night, October 20 (that’s tomorrow!), and I’ll announce the winner soon after. I hope you win!

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  1. Together.

  2. Other than “busy” you mean?


  3. Well, the first word that came to mind was “crazy,” but that’s not the word that I hope defines us a few years down the road when ours kiddos get a little bit bigger! :) So, I’ll choose “curious” or “learning,,” which hopefully will still describe us a few years down the road.

  4. Thankful
    michelle´s latest post: This Moment

  5. LOVE!

  6. Grateful….for all the blessings in our lives.

  7. We are loved.

  8. Imperfect. But that’s okay.

  9. Forgiven.

  10. “Striving” to be better to each other and ourselves

  11. Purposeful
    Lisa´s latest post: 31 Days of Faith {We Believe 7…}

  12. We agonize over crafting a whole purpose statement and now we have to narrow it down to one word?! : )


  13. In one word our family is “kind” to those all around us…across the street and across the globe.

    This is a fabulous giveaway! Thank you.
    abbie´s latest post: Printing on Fabric :: A Little Mercy & Love

  14. Connected.

  15. Growing

  16. one word: “There”
    Rachel D.´s latest post: Shutterfly Christmas Cards (and a GIVEAWAY!)

  17. Together always… I guess that’s two words! ;-)

  18. I want to summarize our family values visibly as a reminder to me as well as the rest of the family.

  19. Oh goodness…only 1 word!
    I think it would be ‘together’

  20. Together

  21. wild!

  22. Loud! Lol!

  23. One word to describe our family is “comfort.” Together we stay grounded and rooted in our unconditional love for one another. My family is like a warm snuggly sweater that is like home no matter where we are. And to me that’s comfort.
    Jadah {Family Sponge}´s latest post: Halloween Craft Idea #6 : Q-Tip Skeleton

  24. Beautiful giveaway! Thank you one word ” Love ” that describes my family!

  25. Blessed

  26. One word for our family: Aware. Aware of each other’s needs, thoughts, feelings and being aware of others.

  27. Loved

  28. joyful

    finding joy in all the moments
    together, apart
    tears and laughter
    triumphs and mistakes
    lots and lots of loving
    Andrea Despain´s latest post: The Most Amazing Dates Ever: Amazing Race Columbus

  29. avatar
    Kim Johnson says:

    We put each other first, Love the artwork Thanks for an opportunity to win!

  30. Only one word? WOW… I think ours would be: committed
    Misti´s latest post: HYCCT Peaceful Pink

  31. Hmmm. Read Organized Simplicity twice through last year and still pondering the Family Purpose Statement. If I win this maybe I could get going on finalizing it! One word: Together. Just love being together!

  32. Hmmm….one word is tough. I’d have to say “Snuggly” :)

  33. Idiosyncratic. We’re just not like any other family I know.

  34. Team. No matter what happens we stick together as a team committed to the Lord.

  35. We just moved to a new home and have wanted to make our mission statement creatively and beautifully displayed. This definitely fits the bill! : )

    We thirst for knowlegde, guidance, love…………

  37. our one word…Brave.

    some would call us risk-takers, but we call it “life”…

  38. Honor.

  39. Joyful is the word I would use to describe my family.

  40. Laughter

  41. Funny. My kids and my husband make me laugh on a regular basis, and I love that about them.

  42. avatar
    Lacey Wilcox says:

    In one word: learning. While we love to learn and I want my children, husband, and myself to learn every day for the rest of our lives, I think I mean it more in the sense that we’re learning how to grow and be family more and more everyday. I’m learning what it means to truly love and treasure my role as mommy, I daily watch my husband learn and evolve as a more gracious, caring father and partner, and I watch my children constantly learning what it means to be recipients of this life we have so graciously been given.

  43. Grateful–we have so much to be grateful for!

  44. Definite

  45. avatar
    Megan Meredith says:

    ENTROPY — that pretty much covers our life and family these days:)

  46. Love love love! Great idea Tsh!

  47. So very grateful.

  48. Our word would be energetic! Beautiful work!

  49. What a beautiful thing to have in your home.

  50. one word: loving.
    Michelle, Muffin Tin Mom´s latest post: Muffin Tin Monday: Halloween Revisited

  51. Growing ( not in number, but hopefully in other ways that count)
    Melanie´s latest post: Wine Bottle and Glass Notecards by thepaperpear

  52. growing!

  53. Joy we strive for joy everyday. We try to find
    joy where ever we can. Ann

  54. My husband laughed and said, “travellers” since we are Jesus lovers who do non-profit work overseas but I’d like to think we’re also “thoughtful”.

  55. We are loving

  56. Intertwined. ~lm

  57. Worship. Because if we worship our Lord through all times we should be showing compassion, loving others, respecting them, etc, etc

  58. Fun!
    Dawn´s latest post: 10.17.12

  59. Adventurous!
    Laura´s latest post: {GIVEAWAY} Day Nineteen / Earth Friendly Lunch Packing

  60. LOVE!

  61. Though I’m a single girl right now, I love the idea of writing a family purpose statement that I can carry through the next stages of my life as marriage and children arrive.

  62. Loved. Blessed.

    I love seeing others’ mission statements. I haven’t actually written ours yet …

  63. Blended!
    Susan´s latest post: Garbage In….Garbage Out

  64. Endeavor

  65. Eternal

  66. Faithful

  67. Fun!
    Liza Glick´s latest post: SINful Giveaway Winner!

  68. avatar
    heather Patenaude says:


  69. We strive for Kindness in all things.
    Nichole´s latest post: Five ways of looking at nature

  70. Loving

  71. If I had to choose one word I’d probably say Striving.
    Laura´s latest post: Reclaiming Halloween

  72. One word – strong – we have been through a lot, but we are still holding strong together.
    Amanda @ wandering´s latest post: look (day 19)

  73. Blessed
    Shauna @Satori Design for Living´s latest post: Satori Office Update {Rococo Chalkboard}

  74. I may need to simplify my purpose statement slightly…

  75. One Word: seekers

    We are seekers of Christ, hopefully and prayerfully growing closer to Him each day.

  76. Hmmm one word? Eclectic …
    different cultural backgrounds, very different childhoods and different perspectives on life in general (I guess opposites do attract :). Thank goodness we’ve blended so beautifully the way that we have so far….

  77. Adventurous!

  78. avatar
    Heidi Roseman says:


  79. Committed


  81. One word? TEAM.

  82. Dynamic. It’s changing all the time… :)

  83. The word to describe my family: kind. We strive to be kind to each other and to bring kindness to others.

  84. Practice gratitude, kindness, slow-living and always know you are loved.
    6512 and growing´s latest post: orbiting a more peaceful planet

  85. one word: “connected” :)

  86. avatar
    John Patenaude says:


  87. One word: LOVE(D)

  88. avatar
    TS in Canada says:

    Loved <3

  89. One word: flexible

  90. Unconditional.

  91. Silly! Our best times are when we are just being silly and laughing together.

  92. avatar
    Jennifer Brees says:


  93. One word to describe my family? yesterday I would have said “drama”. But really, it’s energy. My family has so much energy – it comes out in drama on the bad days, but it is in our relationships and our interests as well.
    Keta Bradford´s latest post: Beautiful Long Vintage 70s Green Gown / Dress by Mister Robert by BombshellBoudoir

  94. What a wonderful idea! This is inspiring me to sit down with my husband and write a “family purpose” statement- I love it. Thank you for the idea (and chance to win this beautiful piece of artwork- if we get it, we’ll hang it directly above our daughter’s “reading nook” in the living room).

  95. funny

  96. Team

  97. Crazy. We love to dance around the house, get messy, and do fun things.
    Lisa´s latest post: A Few Things I Never Thought I’d Do

  98. I love this idea, I was just telling my sister yesterday that I wanted to put this verse: Colossians 3:12-17 on a canvas for each of our families and then I saw your giveaway on Twitter!
    Robyn Rasmussen´s latest post: Homeschool Money Lesson 3: Prices and Products

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