Facts about me:

I am almost 40. This seriously does not bother me, but I am curious how the heck that happened.
I am madly in love with my husband, whom I married in 2003. There were a lot of crazy decisions before that, and there have been some since, but partnering together is the best decision we’ve ever made.
I re-planted from my only home, Chicago Heights, IL, to Surfside Beach, SC at age 34. I’m more Carolina than Chicago every day. Like, I really need to change the name of this blog. Grab you a jar of sweet tea, kick off your flip flops, and join me on my front porch or my golf cart, y’all…
I am a mom of 7. Two are bonuses. Two are in heaven. And three make my life a chaotic miracle.
I am also a Gigi of one, which just rocks.
I work at my church. I have been there 4.5 years and still don’t have a real job title. I do whatever I need to do, and sometimes it makes me insane, but I adore my pastors and believe in our journey together.
I am an ordained minister, a certified bereavement doula, and hold a B.A. in English Education. All that said, my dream job is still and always to write for Entertainment Weekly and co-host EW Morning Live.

Notes about me:

chicagolina-loveI am a disciple of Jesus. I believe Him when He said we have two commandments to live by, so I strive to love Him and love my neighbors and have stopped trying to figure out what everyone should be doing in order to get to Heaven.

I am a writer. I don’t always get to write for a living, but when I do (wink-wink), it’s usually for a post or a blog or a magazine or lately, a book, that doesn’t have my name on it. And that’s ok. I have been writing for over 30(!!!) years and thanks to the internet, my words have reached more people than I ever dreamed possible (you’re here, aren’t you?)

I am a lover. I fall for people easily and hard. Sometimes it means I get my heart stomped on, but always it means I get to be fascinated by people’s stories. I love stories. I love the human experience. It’s impossible for me to separate my emotions from stories, even if they’re fictional. And whether this means I become obsessed with a book or TV show or conned by a real life business partner, this, in part, defines me.

I am a hostess. I love to cook and organize. I love having people in my kitchen. I had surgery in the beginning of 2016, and when my family asked me what I wanted afterwards, I answered for people to come over with dips and watch the Netflix premiere of Fuller House. That about sums up my take on being social. All that said, I can be an introvert sometimes too. I crave alone time, which as most moms of minors know, is like craving a unicorn sighting.

I am homeschooler. I used to be a public school teacher, and I am a proud product of public school, as are our oldest 2 kids. My girls started in public school, and we had a great experience there. But we are also travelers, and although we don’t get to go “out there” as much as we used to right now, I am passionate about being at the healm of our family’s schedule. Our time with our kids is darn short, anyway.

Meanwhile, I am a fan of these things:
Movies (preferably at the theater), TV (binge watching has Changed. My. Life.), Mexican food, live music, the Beach!!!! (it requires exclamation points), lunch dates, coffee dates, long conversations, road trips, plane trips, girls’ nights, date nights, staff meetings (this is how much I love my job), Amazon, holistic living as much as my reasonable husband can stand, teal things, having books everywhere, jeans that actually fit, and people who smile back.

Basically, I really feel like I’ve lived my adult life in dog years... Life abundantly, if you will. So these are some posts that go in-depth about subjects and experiences that have shaped me and my passions. It’s not an exhaustive list… I’ve written a lot here, but I hope if you are looking for encouragement, honesty, and a little bit of laughter on these subjects and more, you’ll find something that speaks to you!

On second marriages

On grace in grittiness

On infertility

On big moves

On stepparenting

On miscarriage

On rainbow babies