I'm so glad you've stopped by my website! On this page, I want to share about my life so you will understand how and why the Sandy Cove Series came to be. Although you and I may never meet face-to-face on this side of eternity, I hope my story and the stories in my novels will inspire and encourage you in your own journey.
So here is my testimony ~
I was raised by two loving parents who did not practice any spiritual affiliations. My siblings and I were encouraged to be self sufficient and to believe in our own abilities to accomplish our dreams.
I met my husband, Randy, during the summer between high school and college. We were both working at Big 5 Sporting Goods. By the end of summer it was clear to me that he was the one! I set to work with the goal of completing college as quickly as possible so that we could get married. Cramming four years of studies into three calendar years, I graduated and began my student teaching a couple of months before our wedding.
An anxiety disorder (perhaps from the overload of stress I had placed upon myself), stopped me dead in my tracks at about the same time we took our vows. Soon I abandoned my dream of being a teacher and was housebound with panic attacks. A family friend recommended a counselor and I began seeking therapy. Little did I know that this would lead me into a journey through the New Age beliefs my counselor embraced. As a novice to spiritual matters, I was enticed by the "freedom" and "open-mindedness" of this philosophy. I could take a little bit of Buddhism, a little Hinduism, and even a slice of Christianity and form my own God and theology.
While I enjoyed this new adventure into spirituality, something concerned me. It seemed that all those who were teaching or counseling in this realm had broken marriages and homes. It was a red flag that continued to prick at my bubble of faith.
Several years later, after the birth of our daughter and son, my father went through a difficult financial situation. As his fears escalated, he lost rational perspective and chose to end his life. This experience hit all of us with tornado force. Reeling from the devastation and guilt that accompany this type of loss, my New Age beliefs provided no solid foundation upon which to stand. Since my God and beliefs were of my own making, they were not something I could lean on or draw strength from at this time of crisis.
My sister suggested that we begin reading the Bible, and we joined a women's Bible study in the book of Luke. By the time Easter rolled around, I was convinced that I needed the kind of love and hope that could only be found in Jesus. It was Easter of 1985 that I began my lifelong journey with Him.
Since then, I have been blessed with opportunities to teach Sunday school and a variety of women's Bible studies. The more I study His Word, the more I am humbled by the vastness of the resources found within scripture. A lifetime of study only scratches the surface of the wealth of His wisdom.
Randy and I are blessed to be parents to two grown children, Kristin and Benjamin, and their spouses. We are delighted to have the new role of grandparents to our daughter's little ones — Annie, Ellie, and new baby, Emma. In addition, we have a golden retriever, Riley, and a cat, Miss Emily. On Sundays, you will find us teaching a 3rd - 5th grade Sunday school class. We have also had the privilege of serving as short term missionaries overseas in Ukraine, and enjoy traveling for pleasure and adventure.
I have lived parallel careers over the past 20 years -- teaching and writing. God restored my dream of being a teacher three years after I began my new life with Him. My first teaching positions were in co-op preschools. After that, I began substitute teaching in a Christian elementary school. Soon I found myself with my own third grade class. Three years later, I made the leap to junior high and began a 15 year journey of teaching English.
Meanwhile, God had given me the story ideas for my series of novels. In my spare time, I would write, attend conferences and writing groups, and seek possible publishers. I also wrote magazine articles and was published in Signs of the Times Magazine and Women's World. The first book I had published was a non-fiction book for teachers, parents, and Sunday school teachers called The Idea Book. It was published by Meriwether Publishers, Inc.
After retiring from teaching, I mentored at risk girls at the local high school and began devoting more time and energy to my writing. I am excited to have the opportunity to share the stories God has given me. It is my prayer that they will go far beyond simple entertainment and will touch lives with the message of God's limitless love and grace.