Who I Am

I am a lifelong learner, spiritual seeker, lover of all things creative, dabbler in the visual arts (especially mixed-media painting and photography), book reader, and writer. Artists, poets, writers, and singer-songwriters inspire me and make me happy.

The many hats I wear in no particular order—daughter, sister, friend, wife, mother, professor, play therapist, counselor, blogger, committee and board member. I’ve lived in Iowa, Utah, Indiana, four places in Texas, and now in Kentucky.

I value play, creativity, self-expression, genuineness, honesty, freedom, service, compassion for myself and others, connection and community, and internal and external beauty. I want to use my gifts, talents, education, training, and experiences to help others and make a positive impact on the world. I attempt to see the glass as half full and live life according to my values. I fail at this but then I begin again.

While I love and am fascinated by human beings, my favorite people are 4-year-olds. They are so imaginative, creative, honest, and full of vitality. I am also attracted to those who stand up for what they believe in or what is right even when it’s unpopular. I endeavor to do the same.

I am an INTJ or an INFJ on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, depending on the day, which means I am an introvert (I need time alone to recharge), I’m intuitive, I’m both a thinker and a feeler, and I’m quite organized. I prefer drama and romantic comedies that make me think and touch me in some way. I have a dry sense of humor. I hate violence so I prefer not to see action-oriented movies.

I was extremely shy as a child and have mostly overcome it. My shyness still comes out sometimes when I am in a new situation with people I don’t know. I am a highly sensitive person. My sensitivity is my superpower. It is extremely helpful in understanding and connecting with students and clients, but sometimes I take things too personally. I am touched by the enormity of the human condition, and I feel things very deeply.

As I a child I wanted to be a scientist, accountant, architect, and teacher like my mother. I was good at math and science. My favorite moments in second grade were when the teacher got out the Creative Writing Wheel and we wrote our own stories. I didn’t like to read because I was a slow reader. (People can change. I love to read now.) I loved to draw floor plans of houses. Today, I am increasingly aware how our physical environment affects us on many levels.

While I’m tall and long-legged, I didn’t play sports as a child. I’m not a physical risk taker and not very competitive. I’m mostly a sports fan when my teams are winning (my alum TCU Horned Frogs, the Dallas Cowboys or Mavericks, San Antonio Spurs, and Texas Rangers).

I could get lost in a library, book store, arts and crafts store, or gift shop. I prefer to listen and dance to classic rock, ‘80s pop, and disco. Even though I have allergies, I love to spend time in nature, especially if I’m warm enough. Trees, flowers, birds, mountains, the ocean, lakes, rivers, streams…

I met my husband in graduate school. He is a fellow counselor and teaches in the same department and college as me. We will be married 20 years in May. Together we have a 15-year-old daughter and 10-year-old son.

My “Creds”

Education

  • BS in Psychology with a minor in Biology from Texas Christian University

  • MA in Counseling with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy from St. Mary’s University

  • PhD in Counseling and Student Services with an emphasis in Play Therapy and Human Development and Family Studies

Licenses and Certifications

  • Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor

  • National Certified Counselor

  • Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor

 Published articles and book chapters and presented at local, state, and national level particularly in the area of play therapy

 Interviewed for local, national, and international radio and podcasts including

 Professional Memberships

  • American Counseling Association

  • Association for Creativity in Counseling

  • Association for Play Therapy: Member of Board of Directors (2012-2018) and Leadership Academy graduate

  • International Association of Marriage and Family Counselors

  • Kentucky Association for Play Therapy: Past President

  • Kentucky Mental Health Counseling Association

 I have taught 4 different undergraduate courses (of which 1 I created) and 11 graduate courses (of which 6 I have created).

 I am available as a speaker and presenter on a variety of topics related to play, creativity, play therapy, and counseling.  Contact me here