Unknowingly, The Family Bind was born the day my marriage bound our blended family together forever.

The Beginning: November 8th, 2012. Denver, Colorado.

1 + 3 = 4

Like many blended family journeys, our route to the altar was indirect, disorganized and complicated, but after a year, we finally arrived in one piece, kids in tow.

Then we putzed around for a while. Now what?

Getting your bearings in a new family is hard.

As a large(r) family eventually always demands, it became necessary to focus, organize and simplify. No, it became critical.

Our family totem pole was all out of order. “Big Honey” (Dad) was at the bottom, somewhere in the dirt, mom was at the top fighting off the clouds, and little sister was standing firmly on big brother’s head. (He’s a patient kid, thank God.)

1 + 3 = 5?

Eventually, baby was on the way. Where does she fit in?

And The “other” life was closing in.

Then there was the “other” families. Yep, in our case there are TWO other families – each vying with different volumes of fervor for each of the kid’s time and attention. And all the grandparents and cousins and friends at different houses…

1 + 3 = 5 + 2 +1 + ? = AHHH!

Then there are individual interests and emotional needs and extra curricular activities, oh my.

We are going to come apart at the seams. 


Even if you’re not dealing with divorce and “other families,” the answer, I think, lies in creating a strong family identity. To survive today, we have to bind.

By focusing on bonding in an organized way, we can simplify our lives just a little, so when the world pulls us each in all different directions, we can stick together.

This website is largely based on my family’s identity story. I pray it’s helpful.

About The Family Bind Creator, Jennifer Bonessi

blended family Jennifer (Shaw) Bonessi is wife of David and mom of three {Ethan, Stella and Claire Jane} in Austin, Texas.

David and she married in 2012 on a snowy day in Colorado surrounded by good food, a handful of friends and the best family. Jennifer brought Ethan and Stella into the family, and together they brought Claire Jane in 2014.

After the trials endured trying to build a family in today’s culture, it’s pretty much her fairy tale come true. She even gets to write. It’s awesome.

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