Welcome to my little corner of the web. I hope you find it interesting, beautiful, and a refreshing break in your day. If I could, I'd over you a beverage. Or a blanket. Slippers?
OK, about me... I grew up on 43 acres that were one part apple orchard, one part Christmas tree farm, one part backyard farm with horses, chickens, dogs, and cats, and about 70% wild Fir forest. My two brothers and I spent the majority of our childhoods exploring every inch of that 70%. The closest neighbor was a half-mile away. But, like most who don't know what they have till it's gone, I spent my teen years desperate to be “normal” and live in a town with sidewalks and coffee shops. Now I live with my husband and daughter, Nia, on the coast of California in a real-life town where I can see and hear my neighbors almost all the time, but I can also ride my bike down to the beach at a moment's notice to watch the sunset. Although I do love town life, I also like to get away from all the hustle and bustle whenever I can to hike in the forest.
A few years ago when I was 35, I was diagnosed with Stage 3b, HER2+, ER/PR- breast cancer. I spent a year doing chemo, radiation, and surgeries, and when I emerged I was disease-free, but I was also reeling, scared, and desperate to connect with others like me. So in 2016 I founded Wildfire Magazine, a thoughtful community for young women survivors of breast cancer.
Two years after my cancer diagnosis, my dad got his own diagnosis: Stage IV pancreatic cancer with liver mets. The doctors gave him six months. At the time he was 61, enjoying his granddaughter and his retirement, hiking all over his private piece of forest. He was the picture of good health (except for, well, that pesky cancer). The diagnosis devastated our family. I did the only thing I could think of to help: I dropped everything in order to spend my time making his time easier and happier. Cooking, cleaning, driving, note-taking, researching, etc. We hoped to prove the doctors wrong on their ludicrous-sounding timeline. In the end, though, after nine rounds of chemo his body was done and he passed away after just five and a half months, spring and summer. On this website, I'm blogging a memoir about our final 100 days together and our overlapping cancer journeys.
When I'm not writing or editing, I'm either in the kitchen or outside, my little one at my side. Thanks for stopping by!
That pretty pic of me at the top of this page and the picture of my family on the home page were taken by the talented Courtney Hoffman. The rest of the photos on this site were taken by me unless otherwise noted. I am flattered if you like my photos and words but please don't steal them. Ask if there is something you'd like to repost.