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That’s a Wrap

That’s a Wrap

It was a blast getting to share these past few weeks with y’all! I hope that this blog gave you a little bit of direction for the road you’re on. Let’s recap this awesome journey.

Sister, Sister

Reagan Walsh joined us on the blog to give an inside look at life as a division 1 college athlete. She spoke wisdom to those transitioning out of High School and searching for the right college to further their education. Reagan’s career has just begun but her success has made a statement. She is a force to be reckoned with as the 2023 softball season approaches. Read Now

Feelin’ Twenty-Two

Lauren Walsh shares her personal story and advice from the roads she has found herself on during her twenty-two years on earth. Through mistakes, breakups, and hardships, Lauren speaks to those needing a bit of direction in their early twenties. “Be kind, invest in valuable relationships, trust in God’s plan, and don’t let time pass you by holding onto grudges.” Read Now

Relationships, Dating, and Breakups

Kristin Strauss joined the blog for this very fun episode of Road I’m On. Kristin shared advice for those entering the dating world, what to look for, red-flags, and her funniest first-date stories. This blog involved a bunch of laughter and memories of the past with lessons learned for the future. Read Now 

Vet On Southwest

Lauren Walsh shared a story of a veteran she met on a Southwest Airlines flight. The veteran named Rich, spoke so much wisdom from his time in the Vietnam war. His story was too good not to be told. This blog was a personal favorite! Read Now 

This Wasn’t in The Play Call

An emotional and personal reflection of a devastating injury faced by Lauren Walsh during a volleyball game. The game that would ultimately be the last of her career. This blog post is real, truthful, and inspirational to those who may be struggling with the road they are on. Read Now

The Road Not Taken

An interpretation of Robert Frost’s world-renowned poem. How embarking on the road less traveled may make all the difference in your life. A change in direction is an opportunity to make your story stand out from the rest. Read Now

Texas to Tuscany

Halee VanPoppel joined the blog to share her story and spark motivation for those wanting to embark on a new adventure. Halee is a former college volleyball player and is currently playing professionally overseas in Rome! She shared what encouraged her to move from Texas to Tuscany. Read Now 

Convo’s and Cracker Barrel

Get an inside look at life on the road with the Belmont Volleyball team. Documented was the last trip of the season, traveling to Indiana. Learn about what goes on before game day and how simple conversations at Cracker Barrel brings the team together. Read Now

She Means Business

Kellie Walsh joins the blog to share how she became successful in her career at such a young age. She speaks valuable advice to those seeking internships and are facing uncertainty with what to do after college. With hard work and perseverance, Kellie climbed the cooperate latter, enabling her to purchase her first home. Read Now

Seeing The Good This Thanksgiving

In honor of Thanksgiving, this blog post was a reflection of the past year and a new perspective for life. Turning a tragic ending into part of one’s story and not the whole story. Even in the midst of trials, there is so much to be grateful for this holiday season. Read Now

Super Woman

To close out this blog, our very special guest Sheri Holmes joined us to share her unique story. How a mother to four, wife, and full-time business woman does it all. How her faith shaped her unprecedented journey through several roads of life and her impact on the roads of others along the way. Read Now

“My hope for you was that along this campaign, you were able to receive advice for the road you’re on. And if not, at least some laughter, relatability, and joy during these guests appearances. Life is gonna have some bumpy moments but regardless of road you find yourself on, TRUST the man with the compass. Keep walking.”

– Your friend, Lauren 🙂

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Seeing The Good This Thanksgiving

Seeing the good this Thanksgiving

This year has been an awesome road to travel with imperfections, highs mountain tops, lower valleys, and breath taking scenery. This year I was baptized, started a bible study, went on a mission trip to Alaska, explored Catalina Island with my closest friends, went to Texas to see my sisters, finished my volleyball career, landed my first internship and more events to count. While, these past few months have been difficult given my circumstances, I find it important to not let this injury blind me from all the good in my life.

No one is perfect, and no one’s life will be either. Have you ever been in an argument with a longtime colleague/friend/boyfriend/etc. and the argument seems to overpower all the good memories you had together? Like somehow a 20-minute disagreement diminishes a lifetime of laughs, joy, and happiness. Psychologically that’s part of our human nature, we tend to hold on to the bad more than the good. Leaving our brains to let a small bump in the road overpower and become a mountain. Life is too short to hang onto the bad. With this recent injury, I am reminded that simply because something tragic happened to me in my life does not mean my life is tragic. That is, unless I give it the power to do so. Rather I will choose to see that I woke up this morning, I am healthy, I have a family that loves me, friends who support me, a roof over my head, and a God that is fulfilling a greater purpose in my life.

John 16:33

I have said these things to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.

When I was in Alaska, I witnessed an overwhelming feeling of joy for the life we live on earth. Like Carrie Underwood said, “this is our temporary home,” just a stepping stone to where we belong within the gates of heaven. But how great is it, that along our journey we get to experience love, heartbreak, joy, hardship and peace. This life could be boring and bland but God gave us a beautiful world. The freedom to choose, make mistakes, explore His creation, and a chance to believe. If life on earth was always good, would we need a God to lean on? Would we need faith? And would we be able to see the value in good things without experiencing some bad?

This thanksgiving I am reminded of how lucky I am regardless of recent heartache; I encourage you to do the same. Your path might be rough terrain, dark, and muddy right not and I know it is tough. But with time a new course my show its face, with sunshine the rain will dry, and with help, the potholes in the road you’re on will be repaired to make your journey a little easier. God never promised us that this life would be easy, but He did promise we would never be alone.

This thanksgiving I am grateful for….

  1. My family
  2. My friends
  3. Belmont
  4. Home
  5. My second home in Nashville

Join me in reflecting on what your grateful for this thanksgiving







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While growing up, we face the endless possibilities of roads to travel. Many of them unknown and uncertain with what they would behold. Maybe, right now you don’t know where to go to school, don’t know what to major in, or don’t know what you want to be when you grow up. I know it may feel like a matter of life and death between decisions but God has a greater plan for your story. A story that wont always be written the way you had imagined but an amazing story nonetheless. This story below is proof.

Sheri Holmes took a scholarship from San Francisco State to pursue volleyball after High School. Not long after she faced the unexpected reality that she didn’t enjoy it as much as she had imagined. Sheri moved her life back home and went to USC, a task only 16% of applicants get to take on. At USC, Sheri pursued her dream of acting. Well aware that road was narrow and distant from her previous road of volleyball, she put herself in position to compete with thousands of aspiring actors in Hollywood.

As we grow older, reality takes more control of our fantasies. The acting dream became more of a fun hobby that would struggle to fulfill the lifestyle she saw for herself. Nevertheless, as one door closes another opens. Sheri used her connections to land her a position with cartoon network in the realm of marketing. Sparking the beginning of what would become an enormously successful career.

In this midst of these major life changes, Sheri was introduced to faith. A foreign idea to her before this time. But with the guidance of close peers, she gained a certain urge to know more about God. During this time of searching for greater purpose, Sheri found peace, direction, and strength for her changing roads. What would have seemed like a daunting task to conquer college and career alone, Sheri had a higher power leading her journey.

As a sister to four, her new profound presence of faith sparked interest and motivation for her family. She became an influence that has since shaped generations and values instilled in the Walsh family. As for me, Sheri has taught me to trust.

How did an ex-volleyballer, aspiring actor, USC graduate, and theater major become a bad a** in cooperate world, awesome mother, loyal wife, and powerhouse in all aspects. Not to mention, someone who is not afraid to stand for what she believes in, stands on a firm foundation of faith, and is generous to those who cross paths with her. My answer to that is TRUST and hard work. She walks with absolute trust in the Lord. Her road was not paved, clear, or scenic all the time. She dealt with trials, school changes, major changes, family hurdles, bumpy relationships, and more. But what she chose to not face was a life without Jesus or the uncertainty that God didn’t have a plan for her. She said, “Your faith can’t be dependent on circumstance,” a lesson I needed to hear myself.

Whatever road she finds herself on, she works hard at and leans on faith, to not only get through but make a statement while she walks.

She is superwoman

Listen to our conversation below!


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She Means Business Part II

She Means Business Part II

Not only has Kellie been successful in her career, she has managed to purchase her first home at the age of 25. In part II of “She Means Business,” Kellie offers advice to those on the road of home-buying. This process can seem daunting at such a young age, but with experts help and stable income, you may be able to accomplish your dreams of being a homebuyer too.

To those on the road of saving towards your first home, Forbes provides a checklist of steps to take before making this big purchase.

  1. Assess Your Debt – Lenders want to know that you’ll be able to handle the debt you already have, in addition to your new mortgage payment. An important metric is your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio.
  2. Check Your Credit – The better your credit score, the lower the interest rate you’ll get on your mortgage. Checking your credit well in advance of beginning your home search will give you time to correct any errors and improve your score ahead of time.
  3.  Review Your Budget- It’s important to remember that your budget will change when you buy a home and you’ll have new costs beyond just the mortgage payment.

  4.  Determine Your Down Payment– How much you’ll put down on your home depends on the type of mortgage you receive. However, the typical mortgage down payment ranges from 3.5% to 20%.

  5. Figure Out theType of Home You Want– When you know your buying power, you can review all the home options available in your area by first understanding the types of homes that are out there.
  6.  Research Where You Want to Live– Once you’re pre-approved and have an idea of the type of home you’d prefer, it’s time to research your favorite neighborhoods. Consider these neighborhood features when you’re shopping for a home:
    • Schools: Top-rated schools typically have an impact on home prices.
    • Property taxes: Different neighborhoods can have vastly different property taxes. Your real estate professional will have this important information

Listen to Part II now

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She Means Business

She Means Business

Kellie Walsh speaks of the road that led her to a successful career at the age of 25. Through internships, networking, and hard work, Kellie defied the odds to accomplish her goals as a business woman.

Kellie had a hard driven mind from a very young age. Possibly stemming from her time as soccer player, she has that natural instinct to be the best at her craft. After finishing high school, Kellie went on to further her education at Arizona State University in Tempe, AZ. While there, Kellie became a member of PiPhi sorority and graduated with a degree in Business/Cooperate communications.

Her time at Arizona State flew by but her journey had just begun. Kellie found a balance between working towards her future and enjoying the college life in Arizona. The turning point for her path was near her senior year as she anxiously awaited what would be next. Kellie did self-research, personal vetting, networking, and interviewing to put her name out there in the cooperate world. And she was a hit.

Soon after graduation, Kellie took a full-time position with Oracle, an American multinational computer technology corporation headquartered in Austin, Texas. In 2020, Oracle was the third-largest software company in the world by revenue and market capitalization. Kellie packed her bags and headed to Austin for this new road she was embarking on.

While at Oracle, Kellie began as a business development representative, a position she held for one year and was then promoted to Account Executive. Kellie is motivated and driven, this is not where the road ends for her. She continues to make strides, climbing the latter of cooperate America as a female, twenty-five-year-old. A task very few have taken on.
Kellie’s story embodies the power in hard work and that truly, all things are possible. For the college student stressed about finding that job, internship, or post-college plan. Take a deep breath and be patient. Refrain from wondering too far off the path during your college years. Work hard and build your resume, the right spot will come at the right time. And until then, keep walking on the road you’re on with purpose, confidence, and love!

Listen to Part I NOW!


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Convo’s & Cracker Barrel

Convo’s & Cracker Barrel

Final road trip of the season. A bitter sweet experience, time, and journey. The road Belmont volleyball was on in literal terms consisted of highway US-41 and I-69. But what the road really meant, was one last trip together as a team before we go our separate ways. Gone home for the holidays and some, gone for good.

What is it like on the road? Long days and some sleepless nights. Early practices and take-out. Bus dances, Starbucks runs, and karaoke. Road trips are where we talk as more than simply players but as best friends. Laughing, singing, sharing stories, and finding any way possible to get in a comfortable position on the bus. All while, holding back the nerves that come with knowing that game day is just a few hours away.

On this trip, I was injured but I knew I couldn’t miss it. This was the last rodeo, last long drive, and last of delirious laughs with my team. When you’re an underclassman on these trips, it’s easy to look forward to the next thing. Always impatient with where your feet are, constantly flipping to the next, like sticky notes that never run out. But sometimes, if you’re anything like me, all it takes is conversations at Cracker Barrel to remind you of just how lucky you are to be surrounded by built-in best friends.

That’s the special part about being on a sports team. The 17 of us did not choose each other yet, somehow our worlds collided at perfect time. Divine timing. We never would have thought that a California, Ohio, Oregon, and Kentucky girl would one day be sitting around a Cracker Barrel table in Evansville, Indiana. What are the odds? Slim to none.

The four of us told stories and learned more about the people we are behind the jersey. With limited ideas left for this blog, it occurred to me that the greatest story was right in front of me. We are of 1% of women that get to compete in Division 1 sports. The four of us are from different parts of the country but managed to make it to one University among thousands. We are different yet, alike. Living and learning together on a road very few before us have traveled.

I recall being on this bus as a freshman wondering how I’d ever get through it. Now I’m through it and would do it all over again. Time goes by fast. What I hope for is more convos at Cracker Barrel. For the girls that come after me to see the beauty in eating around a table with your team in the middle of nowhere on a Friday night. Sure, there will be times when you’ll wish your evening looked like those partying back home. But don’t let this time pass you by, very few get these moments, as unconventional as they are, you’re going to remember them forever. Screaming on the bus at the top of our lungs, “dixie land delight” or karaoke with the bus mic. Making bathroom breaks in the middle of the night, driving through endless miles of corn fields, and reckless bus drivers. Even if it meant cruching through the snow post-surgery, these memories are worth it.

I do not think it will hit me that this was my last trip with the team. Sweet silence, squeaky windows, and bright lights from outside all disguise this reality. The Belmont volleyball team sleeps, someone reeks, and all is right in the world:)

If your road looks daunting, long, and tedious and you wonder if you’ll ever make it to the end. You will and the time will go fast. Take a moment to appreciate the friends you make along the road you’re on. And if it helps, have a convo at Cracker Barrel.


Cracker Barrel



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Texas to Tuscany Part II

Texas to Tuscany Part II

Halee VanPoppel and Lauren Walsh reminisce of their time together on the volleyball court. The two touch on some of their hardest seasons and how they navigated these challenges together.

Playing a college sport is hard. Often times, the perception of college athletics is glamorized by public perception. With the lack of candidness as to what being a student athlete really looks like, many miss just how much work goes into the job. It takes a lot of practice, perseverance, time, and energy. In that process, the road can get bumpy. In many ways this season of Halee and Lauren’s life tested their faith, character, and strength. And with these lessons learned, the two have gotten way more out of the sport than simply the sport alone.

For Halee, volleyball has given her the opportunity to play another season in Rome, Italy and see the world! For Lauren, the sport gave her the opportunity to travel 2,000+ miles from home and experience a whole new life in the south. Mutually, the two are thankful that the sport gave them each other:)

Listen to their stories and advice during the road of college sports now.


Read Part I


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Texas to Tuscany

How a small town girl packed up her life and embarked on a new journey in Europe

Halee Van Poppel is a well known talent in the south. She has made a name for herself as a successful figure in women’s volleyball and continues to do so overseas. During her junior year at Belmont, Halee played in all 31 matches, seeing action in 106 sets and earning 10 starts … Finished season nationally ranked 88th in total attacks, 128th in attacks per set and 142nd in total kills. After 4 seasons with Belmont University, Halee furthered her career at Dallas Baptist University where she was named, AVCA DII All- American Honorable Mention, All-conference Newcomer of the Year, and All- Conference First Team. Halee is now apart of the Roma7 Volleyball team in Rome, Italy.

Halee has experienced a lot in her career and can speak to challenges one might face in college sports, leaving home, and finding the love of the game again.

Halee now finds herself on the roads of Rome finding new purpose, faith, and identity in this season of life. Listen to this and more in the conversation linked below.

As a close friend, I am so proud of Halee’s accomplishments and all that she has done with her talent. She has been such a role model to me in my career and has greatly influenced the person I am today.

Watch part one of our conversation now.





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The Road Not Taken


Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

We were all forced to read this poem in High School and give our best interpretation. Though, at that point in our lives the road we were on had been practically paved for most of us. We lived under mom and dad’s roof, the crosswalk kept us in between the narrow lines, and the world did not yet get a hold of our innocence and temptation. We hadn’t experienced the freedom to choose a different path or face a major trial in our lives that consequently chose a path for us. Now however, I think I can finally relate to the words of Robert Frost. I am embarking on the Road less traveled, the road not as appealing at first glance, but the road that will make all the difference. 

There were two roads presented before me. One that I could see by, “looking down one as far as I could, to where it bent in the undergrowth.This was the road I thought I was traveling, the road I had mapped my next 5 years on. But to my surprise, life chose, “the other, just as fair, and having perhaps the better claim, because it was grassy and wanted wear.” There is no telling which road is “best.” In fact, Robert Frost was not favoring one over the other. Rather he argues that, no matter which path you take, be committed to follow it wherever it may lead for, “you could not travel both.” 

And so, I’ll save the first for another day, the plans I made for myself, and the expectations I set. Because it is time to embark on the road less traveled, the road that “wanted wear,” because this road has a plan for me. A plan I may not yet see but, will soon make all the difference. 

Our choices, both big and small, shape the journey we find ourselves on in this life. In some instances, like mine, life may have made the decision for you. But maybe that was God pushing me out of my comfort zone knowing I would have remained on the paved road if it were up to me, never seeing what the road less traveled had to offer. Whatever road you may be traveling, walk it with purpose, pride, and strength. And know that the decisions we make and trails we face sets us upon a path specifically designed for us. So, if you find yourself on the road less traveled, refrain from turning around. We may not understand the importance of this change in direction until we walk this path a little further.



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This Wasn’t in The Play Call

This is an ironic blog. Who would have thought that the very thing I created for a school project would become the resource I needed for myself. Teaching, aiding, and walking with friends through life’s biggest obstacles. Being a word of encouragement to those struggling with the stage of life they may be in, rarely ever thinking that the challenges others face could happen to you, especially not tomorrow.

Ever felt invisible? That life was finally going your way? Oblivious to the reality that you would soon be entering a dark, beaten down, and distraught road. Well, that’s the Road I’m On at the moment. I don’t know why my direction has changed its course but I have to believe that the man with the compass is steering me towards a better destination.

I played my last volleyball game on 10/22/22. My brand promise to you was to always share with complete honesty and truth. And well, I feel robbed, broken, defeated, and a bit hopeless at the moment. I have a lot of questions for God. Like why I deserved this? Why me? Why now? What did I do wrong? What could He possibly be teaching me?

I don’t have these answers, and frankly I’m not sure I ever will. Just when I thought the pieces of my life that had been previously broken were finally being repaired, my life shatters. You hear of athletes exiting the world of sports after a long career, facing identity crises. I don’t even feel like I was given the respect of mourning the sport that was taken from me in a split second. The calendar did not run out for my final season, life came a took the days I had left without any explanation or preparation. Why does a God who loves his children let these things happen?

I want to ask Him myself. I wish there was a phone line to heaven where I could speak to the manager. Better yet, I wish I could send my Grammy to speak to the manager. Believe me, if you met my Grammy, you’d know she’d take care of this dilemma and have a word with the Man who let this happen to me. Grammy gets Nordstroms to refund her for the shoes she purchased in 1998, I’m sure she could get them to reverse this reality.

My volleyball career has been a story of trials, tribulations, and a lot of hard work. I was exactly 25 days away from finally hanging up my jersey with pride and 14 days away from celebrating all that I’d committed to and accomplished in my four years on Senior Night. To say the least, I am heartbroken. It just doesn’t seem fair. It’s hard to not think of all the things you dreamt for yourself and question why God wasn’t willing to allow you to play on your senior night, the game that has been highlighted in your calendar for years. Now my calendar will read the track of a yearlong road to recovery. Why couldn’t He just give me a few more weeks? I already miss the nerves I felt before stepping on the court and the antsy movement of my feet when the game is about to begin. I miss the feeling of my heart racing, the competitive drive, and the goofy mumbles at the net. I’d do anything to hear that over the mumbles of a diagnosis from the Doctor. I simply don’t understand why. Where did I go wrong? Did I really deserve this? Is this my fault?

People have told me that something good will come of this, He has a plan, and that everything is going to be alright. But I’d be lying if I told you I believed them. I don’t understand the plan. I don’t see the good that will come of this. And right now, nothing feels right. I don’t say this as a way to receive pity for my situation. I say this to admit that sometimes life just stinks. It’s not all rainbows and butterflies. You don’t see the real side of people behind the Instagram post, the selfies, the Tik-Tok dances, or the tweets. It’s ok to not have it all together sometimes, I promise you, it’s part of being human. And while I don’t have the answer to why bad things happen to good people, I hope to be a light to you in your hard place as we walk this road together towards a brighter day.

A few weeks ago, I shared a few things I learned in my 22 years of life. The first lesson being that in your hardest days, custom armor is being built for you. So that every challenge after will have no chance against your weaponry. And while I feel like I couldn’t be any tougher with the obstacles I’ve already climbed, I guess God thought I needed my armor upgraded. I know this Road I’m On will be tough, but I am certain that I will like my new added armor features of strength, perseverance, and courage that I am gaining in the process.

Join me in praying for a safe surgery and speedy recovery…Maybe even a miracle to play again.

Thank you!





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