What’s in a Name: The Story behind Shimmering Twig

Each day children are born. For months before the birth of a child parents agonize over the name they will give this little human they have yet to even meet. Who will he or she be? What personality traits will each parent contribute? Will they be a carefree wild child who should be named something strong and bold like the personality driving them? Or will they be an observer, sitting peacefully taking in this immense world surrounding them. Should a child be named after a kind soul with ancestral significance? Will this child be carrying on a traditional name? We spent months trying to name our second daughter, not even knowing whether we were having a boy or girl. We developed two hypothetical names, and neither felt right until we saw her. Our first daughter was much easier. Why you might ask? Perhaps it was because we knew the gender, so that bond began to develop before we held her. We were able to use pronouns which made it more personal. Regardless, the moment our second daughter was born we just knew, her name just fit her personally.

It was about a year ago. I was driving to work, about a forty five to fifty minute commute one direction, on a two hour delay. I had just recently returned to work from my second maternity leave, so I was feeling a bit overwhelmed leaving my babies, returning to work, and to add fuel to fire, I had just started my Special Education Supervision Internship. Never a dull moment in this Mama’s life. With all of that going on, the fact that my husband was a devout Oil field employee, who spent an extensive amount of time working away, or working ridiculously long shifts, leaving at all hours of the day, left me feeling a little like an incredibly over-whelmed and over-worked mother of two. But the days continued to pass by, eventually turning to months.

Returning back to that chilly morning in February, I had been using the commute rolling through every possible career move that could get me back with my babies with more time at home, panicking over the workload I had taken on, and wondering, like all mothers do, if every decision I had made in my career was wrong. As I might have mentioned, I am currently a teacher, so you can see how the hormones were adding to my melodramatic thought process. Teachers have a sweet maternal gig. 7:30 to 2:50, only working week days, guaranteed to have EVERY holiday off, not to mention the crazy huge elephant in the room, summers off with my little darlings. But on that chilly February morning, it was hard to keep all of that in perspective as I was headed towards a work that was keeping my from my babies, adding extra stress and fuel to that maternal fire was the work load of an internship, and the projects looming over my head to boot. It was only my fourth year teaching and I had already taken one maternity leave two years prior, so I did not have much time to build up days off for the second maternity leave. I took the majority of my time without pay, so I was basically finishing out the year to break even.

With a new baby, a newly two year old, a husband working away, and a remaining 5 months of working to pay the costs to go to work, along with completing an internship, there was no question where my stress was coming from. Do not get me wrong, I love my job, love what I do and love the kids I work with. I have made some lifelong friends at my job and couldn’t imagine my days without those select people supporting me and motivating me to be the best teacher possible. But at that point in my life, all I could focus on was keeping my head above water.

And so it was on one of those chilly commutes that I was admiring the freshly fallen snow as I crested the mountain top on my way to work. Snow is remarkably beautiful as the sun is rising. There is something so majestic about entangled tree branches encased in heavy snow as it transforms to a glistening crystal sheet of ice. In my former years when I identified myself as an artist, I had this fascination with trees, with their complexity, depth, structure, and uniqueness. No tree was identical, like no snowflake has ever been repeated. I had been tossing around the idea of blogging, or more so, creating a site about event planning. My dream job was always to plan events, parties, weddings, making every detail perfect down to the tiniest features. But the former artist in me was thinking beyond events, and continued to fixate on those shimmering trees lining my commute. It was on this sunny, freezing morning that the shimmering twigs and branches of the trees embedded themselves into my mind. The name seemed to sparkle at me like those branches. What I would do with it, I wasn’t quite sure, but I knew I must file that name. At some point I would know exactly what Shimmering Twig was supposed to be. But for now, it was just a perfect, beautiful name.


Fast forward one year later and Shimmering Twig was still lingering, but the research and faint knowledge of the potential of blogging was fresh. The two seemed to fit so well together, but I was afraid. I kept thinking, “What if no one cares what I have to say?” or “What if I’m mistaken as a know-it-all?” and even still, “What if I am viewed as just ‘another wanna-be blogger’?” But the truth is, I know none of those things are true. I love the advice, and stories I read from other bloggers. When my sister and I were stumbling through the first few years of Gluten Free life, The Gluten Free Girl saved us. She was real, and raw, and funny, and human. I want to be human and share my story. Maybe someone else is out there and just needs that “wow I can relate to this” kind of story.

So here we are, 4 posts later and I have a blog. It’s new, it’s small, but it’s mine. And I’m so grateful for the viewers I have, and will continue to share my story, while continuing to read and support the many blogs that gave me the courage to step out and try something new.


  • Whitney

5 thoughts on “What’s in a Name: The Story behind Shimmering Twig

  1. Can’t wait to follow your blogging journey. I have been wanting to start blogging again but haven’t committed to it. Perhaps this summer? Either way, you write beautifully and I am sure you’ll grow quicker than you think. I would suggest link-up parties and hosting giveaways. Those are both ways to grow your followers. Best wishes on your journey home to your beautiful girls.


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