Finding joy when life gets messy!

Getting to know me

At sixteen, I begged God to help me stop the cycle of abuse, addiction, and chaos that had plagued my family for generations. I am so blessed that God sent my husband Bill into my life two years later, to be my partner on my journey. We have been married for 43 years and have two grown children. Our daughter Kate is married to Luke, and they have three children. Our son Jack is married to LeeAnn, and they have three children. Both of my children and their spouses are serving at churches in full-time ministry positions. 

Turning "60", two years ago, was a pivotal point in my journey. I declared that the rest of my life would be the laughing years. My family was surprised when I began to be silly and laugh. They are always telling me how much fun I am. I agree with them; life is fun. Our family loves Hawaii! Bill and I have vacationed on the islands more than 40 times. We have been scuba diving with sharks and moray eels, snorkeled with dolphins and turtles, hiked a volcano, and explored many of the Islands back roads. If I am on Maui during the whale season, I can be found on a boat looking for whales. 

My husband is a retired pastor, and we moved to Bakersfield in early 2016. We share a home with our daughter and her family. Over the years, I have learned to love sports, and I have been known to yell at the television while watching my SF Giants or Golden State Warriors play. During the 2014 season, I got to video chat the final moments of every playoff and World Series game with my son. Twelve years ago, Tyson was born, and I became MauMau. Nothing in my life had prepared me for that instant rush of love that flooded my heart the moment he was born. As Kinslee, Henry, CJ, Liam, and Brenlee have arrived, it still amazes me that these kids can look at me with a smile or tear and melt my heart.

When I look back over the last 46 years, I am happy to say that the cycle has been broken, with God’s help and my commitment to make changes. 


The Famous Actor Studio Questions:

I worked in Hollywood for many years and always loved watching James Lipton on "Inside Actor's Studio." I have always dreamed of sitting in the chair one day while he asked his ten questions. Since that probably isn't going to happen, I thought I would give you my answers here: 

1. What is your favorite word? 

  • MauMau - The name my five grandchildren call me. 

2. What is your least favorite word? 

  • Comparison - Almost always done incorrectly. 

3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually, or emotionally? 

  • My husband's hand on my shoulder.

4. What turns you off? 

  • Cruelty! 

5. What is your favorite curse word?  

  • "Freakin" - I promise I don't use it very often. 

6. What sound or noise do you love? 

  • The quiet of being underwater in the ocean and a humpback whale starts to sing.

7. What sound or noise do you hate? 

  • Yelling of any kind. 

8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? 

  • A Jockey - I would love to feel the speed and power of a racehorse as it runs. 

9. What profession would you not like to do? 

  • Animal Control - All the animals, would end up at my house. 

10. What would you like to hear God say when you arrive in Heaven? 

  • I am so glad you're here. Janie, Kay, and your grandmother Lily are waiting for you.