Born and raised near Bozeman, Montana, I was very much a country girl at heart. I spent most of my time outdoors, looking for a horse to ride and a creek to fish in. My love of teaching began at a young age when I lined up my stuffed animals for their first lesson. I have been teaching almost non-stop ever since. After graduating from Montana State University, I fell in love with both my husband and the Pacific Northwest. We moved to Seattle, Washington in 2001 and added two more boys to the family years later. In 2015, I was diagnosed with both osteoarthritis and stage 1 breast cancer. The treatment and prevention of recurrence has disabled me, but it also provided time to write a book and substitute teach. I am learning every day the many things I didn’t know I was blessed with and finding strength in the One who will see me through.
More About Me
Confession Time: I love baking WAY too much.
My mother learned from my grandmother how to work magic in the kitchen and made home-cooked meals for us every day. It was her tasty creations that inspired me to want to bake something yummy too. So, as a pre-teen, she would let me make something “as long as you clean up after yourself”. One of the very first recipes fell in love with was snickerdoodles. I’ve always had a fondness for nutmeg. Even more so as Alton taught me how to use it fresh from my pocket. These delicate cookies are the perfect vehicle for it. One day, I decided to double the recipe, but accidentally only put in twice as much of part of the recipe (the butter part). When remorse sounded from the kitchen, my mom came in to find large, greasy snickerdoodle “pancakes” bubbling on the cookie sheet. One of many mishaps I’ve had in the kitchen.
Teaching has also been a passion of mine.
For seven years, I worked as a 4th and 5th grade teacher in Christian schools around the Pacific Northwest. While my boys were toddlers, I was an online English Essay Writing, Science and Social studies tutor. It was fun to connect with kids across the country and help them with their homework.
My love for teaching has also spilled into Bible study and women’s ministry at church. When I was a new mother, I joined a women’s Bible study on Thursday mornings. Initially, I was just glad to have a couple hours off of “mom-duty”. Soon, I fell in love with digging into the Bible alongside other ladies. Soon after, I began to lead Beth Moore studies during the summer for several years. It has been a joy to guide women into having a deeper relationship with their true Father & Creator.
In March 2015, I found a hard mass on the inside of my left breast. I toyed with the idea of ignoring it, since we were going on Spring Break in 3 days. My husband encouraged me to do something just in case. One week later, we were in the radiologist’s office after multiple mammograms. He showed us where they had found 3 very small masses and sprinkles of pre-cancerous areas across my breast. He answered our questions, recommending a biopsy, and ended the conversation with the comment, “It’s probably just nothing.”
On April 9th, 2015, after two different biopsies and days of waiting, I was told every sample was cancerous. I had invasive ductal carcinoma.
That very same day, I set up a CaringBridge.org website and chronicled the wild ride that is cancer treatment. The hormone therapy for cancer prevention has severely disabled me, so I have had to make a lot of changes. Now, I substitute teach in multiple school districts and have enjoyed developing my writing skills.
I Guess I’m a Writer
I completed my first book, Through Ilsa’s Eyes, last summer, which took much longer than I expected.
From the back of the book:
“The unusually bright blue eyes of a young college student have seen lifelong hallucinations that she has chosen to ignore. Ilsa resigned herself to hoping for a simple life, but when the apparitions begin to shake her reality, she is confronted with the truth. It demands that she make a decision to engage in battle against spiritual forces stealing the very life from those around her.”
Currently, I am working to get my book published as I figure out this new road I’m on.
I’m glad you stopped by to walk alongside me for a bit. It’s always better to share the journey together.