Speaking Topics
Request Jill as a Speaker
Request Mark and Jill as Speakers

“Jill Savage is the best.  If you are looking for a dynamic speaker who can touch the heart of an audience, Jill is your girl.  Her honest, relevant, story-telling style makes her one of the strongest female communicators today.”
Dr. Kevin Leman, best-selling author and speaker

“”Jill Savage speaks with so much practical wisdom. She is very real, and very present and freely admits her failures but also her successes as she walks with God.”
Susie, mom of five

“Thank you again for the wonderful spirit you and Mark brought to our church. Your authenticity spoke even louder than your words.  Here is what I heard right after the marriage event… “If it was for nobody else, it was for my husband and I. So many things have turned around… I see a hope in him that was not there before.”
Linda Stapleton, Myrtle Beach Community Church

Mark and Jill Savage are awesome! I loved how open and honest they were about their own journey in parenting. Their transparency was refreshing and inspiring! Thanks again!”
Candi Smith

Jill and her husband Mark speak at a variety of conferences and other private and public events throughout the year. Check out their schedule to see if they are coming to your area. Contact numbers or links are included for events that are open to the public.

Request Jill, Mark, or both Jill and Mark to come speak at your event!


January 11, 2011
Immanuel Lutheran Church: MOPS
Crystal Lake, IL; 9am-10:30am
“Keeping the Balance”
Sarah 815-459-1441 or HERE
Please call for childcare availability.

January 17, 2011
Normal First United Methodist Church
Normal, IL 7-9pm
“Real Moms Real Jesus”
Janet Lammey 309-451-1394

January 21, 2011
Harmony Bible Church
Danville, IA; 9:30am-11:30am
“Raising the Next Generation”
Rebekah Beekman 319-394-9856
Please call for childcare availability.

January 26, 2011
Eastview Christian Church: Mom to Mom
Bloomington, IL 9am -11am
“40 Practical Parenting Tips”
Sandy Theile 309-662-4768

February 3, 2011
Evangelical Free Church: MOPS
Bloomington, IL 9am-11am
“Professionalizing Motherhood”
Amy Max 309-531-5110 or http://www.efreebn.org/womens_ministry/article202579.htm

February 19, 2011 (Mark and Jill Savage)
Lutheran Social Services of IL
Embassy Suites, Peoria, IL; 10am-12pm
Becky Moore 217-522-4296 or http://www.lssi.org/

March 11-12, 2011
Hearts at Home National Conference
Normal, IL

April 21, 2011
Immanuel Mops
Immanuel Church
Gurnee, IL 9-11am
“Real Moms…Real Jesus”
Elizabeth Strahan 847-672-4695

April 21, 2011
Immanuel Mops
Immanuel Church
Gurnee, IL 6:30-9pm
“Love For A Lifetime” couples night out
Elizabeth Strahan 847-672-4695

April 28, 2011
First Southern Baptist Church
Yuma, CO; 6pm-8pm
“Real Moms…Real Jesus”
Krystal Ballah 970-630-4035 or http://www.yumamops.blogspot.com/

October 7-8, 2011
Hearts at Home Colorado Conference
Colorado Springs, CO

November 4-5, 2011
Hearts at Home North Central Conference
Rochester, MN

Lower the Expectations

On Saturday I had the privilege of watching a friend’s 3-month-old for about 7 hours.  It took me back to the good ‘ole days of burp rags, diaper changes, and very little time for myself. 

I agreed to babysit with two days notice…enough time for me to do one thing: lower my expectations. 

When there’s a little one in your life—whether permanently or temporarily—one has to lower the expectations or one will find herself very frustrated. 

Nearly every time I speak somewhere a weary mom will come up and ask me how in the world I’ve written seven books with five kids.  And my answer is I DIDN’T WRITE MY FIRST BOOK UNTIL MY YOUNGEST WAS IN SCHOOL.  There’s no way I could have ever written a book with a preschooler on my knee.That would have been an impossible expectation and would have resulted in a high level of frustration for me and my family.

So this past Saturday I planned to accomplish only one thing: take care of this little one.  I managed to empty the dishwasher on one of her 15 minute naps and I folded a load of laundry on her second 15 minute nap—but then I felt like superwoman because I EXCEEDED my expectations! 

If you’re in the season of little ones, do yourself a favor and lower your expectations.  Determine that the one thing you will accomplish is to care for your little one. 

I’m sure you’ll get one or two things done beyond that…and then you’ll exceed your expectations and really feel like it’s been a successful day!

What about you?  Have you found it helpful to lower your expectations?  How have you practically done that?

Homemade Freezer Cookies

I have a confession to make.  If there’s sugar in the house, I have no self-control.  Seriously…I’ve learned that the only way to stay true to a healthy diet is to keep sweet treats out of the house.

But I don’t want to deprive my kids of warm cookies after school or after we clean the house on Saturday, on occasion.

So I finally figured out a way to do both!

I make a double batch of cookie dough…this past weekend it was our family favorite: Peanut Butter Cookies.  Then I roll all the dough into the little balls.  I place them on a cookie sheet and freeze them.  Then I throw the frozen balls in a freezer bag and put the bag in the freezer.

When I want to make cookies, I pull out just enough for 2 per person, let them thaw (it doesn’t take long at all), criss-cross them with a fork dipped in sugar and bake.

This way we all enjoy warm cookies, but I’m not tempted to overeat!

Do you have a tip on eating healthy or how to be careful about how many sweets you eat?

It’s Not Too Late To Join the Fun at Hearts at Home!

The winner of the Growing Grateful Kids book drawing is Megan who posted as “The Dowell Family.”  I’ll contact you by email Megan to get your mailing address.  Congrats!

I was so inspired by all the stories shared…if you missed reading them, you can find them here.

It was a quiet weekend at the Savage home.  I love a Saturday when I don’t have to ever get in the car!  Of course, if I don’t have to get in the car, then I don’t have to put on makeup or even get dressed if I don’t want to!  That’s the kind of Saturday I had!  Loved it!

What a perfect weekend of rest before the big Hearts at Home party in Normal, IL this weekend!  Right now over 3500 moms have made plans to join us.  And it’s still not too late for you to join us or benefit from the weekend in some way!

If you live close enough to come: 

  • Walk-in registration is available for both days.  Click here for walk-in registration information.

  • Moms Night Out tickets are available for Friday Night’s high-energy, stand-alone session that features music, drama, comedy, and more!  Click here for Moms Night Out ticket info.

If you live too far away to attend:

  • You can find free online resources 24/7 at www.hearts-at-home.org.
  • You can still order a Home Conference Packet.  Click here for Home Conference Packet info.
  • You can always order Hearts at Home resources in the Heart Shoppe.  Click here for the Heart Shoppe.

If you’d like to attend our NorthCentral Regional Conference Nov 6-7, 2010 in Rochester, MN:

  • Online Registration is open!  Click here to learn about the conference and register!

Are you coming this weekend?  Ordering a Home Conference Packet?  Have you enjoyed a Hearts at Home book recently?  Have you been encouraged by an article or other free resource on the Hearts at Home website lately?  Tapped into the Hearts at Home eCommunity?

I’d love to hear about it and I’m sure other moms would love to hear about it too!

A fresh idea for the family meal

I am a firm believe of the importance of the family meal.  I’ve posted about it before here.  I believe that the family needs to sit down around the dinner table most evenings to foster communication and family connection.  No drive thru McDonald’s, no meals in front of the TV (except when it’s a treat to do so), no television on during dinner, just a great time of conversation, laughter, and fun around the table each night. 

I’m always looking for ways to refresh our family traditions.  When Mark and I spent a week at the Blessing Ranch in November, I discovered a fresh idea for the family meal.  Each night at the Blessing Ranch we shared a family style meal around the table.  At each place setting was your own chilled bottle of water and an empty glass.  You kept your own glass filled throughout the meal with your own bottle of water.

It was classy.  It was simple.  And it was practical.

No need to ask everyone what they wanted to drink.  No running to refill drinks during dinner.  It made the table setting and mealtime so easy!

Mark and I decided we liked it enough to do it ourselves.  I went to a local liquor store and bought a dozen empty, clear wine bottles (they sell them for do-it-yourself wine makers).  They cost about $1/bottle.  A bag of reusable cork tops were about $1 for a dozen corks. 

We keep the filled bottles in the refrigerator so they are chilled and ready for our family meal each night. 

Clean up is easy. We simply refill and cork the bottles, then we use an antibacterial kitchen cleaner to wipe off the outside of the bottles.  After cleaning, they are placed back in the refrigerator to chill for another meal.

(Picture from our Thanksgiving meal when we used the bottles for the first time!)

Do you have any ideas that make the family meal a special experience for your family?

Life is So Unfair!

So my 13-year-old son wants the world to know that he is the ONLY kid in 8th grade who doesn’t have a cell phone. I told him I was happy to tell the world for him. After all, I think it’s only fair for people to know how unfair Mark and I are to our children.

And honestly, it’s far worse than cell phones. For instance:
  • We don’t let them stay on the computer for endless hours. We set the timer to indicate when it’s time to get off.
  • We actually have certain days of the week that we don’t even allow screens—no TV screens, no computer screens, no video screens.
  • We don’t allow them to see just any movie with a PG or PG 13 rating. We actually check out the content and then decide. It’s so very unfair.
  • We require them to go to bed early on school nights.
  • They have to take out the trash, empty the dishwasher, run the vacuum, and care for their animals. Can you believe it?
  • On the weekends they have to help mow the grass which is no small task on our 2.5 acre yard.
  • They also have to help feed and care for the animals we own. The nerve.
Life is so very unfair.
So, of course, because we’re so unfair we occasionally allow them to do some fun things to make up for it all. Like last month, for example, when we allowed the 13-year-old to have a slumber party for his birthday. Of course they played flashlight tag outside in that great big yard he helped mow, slept on that floor he helped vacuum, and dirtied enough dishes to fill the dishwasher he helps empty a few times each week. I then baked cookies at midnight and served them right along with cake and ice cream. Wow, that made up for all that unfairness…at least for that week!
As for the 15-year-old, when he asked on the same evening at 8:30pm, “Mom, can I go to a late movie with a friend?” my response was “You know, that sounds like a fun thing to do on a Friday night. Sure, see if you can find someone to go with you.” Once plans were made, I ferried the two boys to the movie theatre at 9:45pm and picked them up at midnight. It’s not like I’d be sleeping, and it was a great opportunity to make up for all that unfairness around the Savage home.
If life is unfair around your home, don’t worry. You may make different unfair decisions for your children based upon your own values, but you are not alone.
And by the way, if you work for a landline phone company, please leave a few pay phones out there. After all, my teenagers don’t have cell phones…and they just might need to call their unfair home!