If you are lucky enough to find a way of life you love, you have to find the courage to live it. John Irving
Where to begin? Well, I am 55 years old, but cannot really believe that. I live in Maine year-round, but visit my two children in Virginia as often as I can. Megan and her boyfriend Jacob are graphic designers and Taylor is a firefighter. After working for many years as a research forester, I switched jobs to middle school special education when I moved to Maine in 2003. In 2017, I will become a published author!
What is my passion? Thanks to my late husband Chris, I fell in love with the Maine wilderness. Our honeymoon in 2005 was a canoeing trip on the Allagash Wilderness Waterway and I cried when we had to come back to civilization. The call of loons, the scent of firs, one pristine vista after another, paddling for a day or two without seeing another soul…I love it all. In 2008, my father gave me a Native Watercraft Ultimate 12 hybrid kayak for Christmas and in 2010, I tried my first solo wilderness kayaking.
All went well, and in 2011, Paddle for Hope took me across Maine on the Northern Forest Canoe Trail, raising $10,600 for the Maine Children’s Cancer Program. Next, I began dreaming of a solo thru-paddle of the entire trail. Upwards, an inspirational adventure memoir that tells the story of my 2015 journey, will be available in late summer. Writing and publishing has been as challenging and rewarding as paddling 740 miles unassisted!
If it happens outdoors, I probably love it. Swimming, hiking, snowshoeing, reading, learning Spanish and all the travel I can afford. In the past year, I visited 7 new countries: Greenland (Denmark), Iceland, Norway, the Netherlands, Ireland, the U.K, and Costa Rica. A special blessing was seeing both of the young people whom I sponsor through Unbound, Fredy in Honduras and Dixie in Costa Rica. Simplifying my life is giving me the time, money, and energy to follow my heart and pursue my dreams.