About Me

I'm a South Dakota farm girl turned teacher after I transplanted myself in Kansas when I went to Tabor College. I've taught English in the same public school in Cheney, Kansas for 29 years and am proud to say that at least five former students have chosen to become English teachers. May they love each student first as a human being with a soul, and secondly, as a creative being on Earth for a unique God-given purpose. Thank you, my students, for putting up with my many quirks.

I'm the caboose of my family coming along when my three siblings were in high school and college. I've been an aunt since I was 6-years-old and adore my eight nieces and nephews that have given me 26 greats.

I answer to many nicknames: Mel, little one, twirp, Sissy, Shishy, Melly, Melodious Skeldy, and Shishy. No one says my favorite one anymore, Harmony, and I'm glad my brother doesn't call me Smelly Melly or Bruce Jenner anymore. A coaching colleague still calls me by his nickname for me—Sunshine.

I married for the first time my match.com man at age 40—gained a step-daughter and another doggy. It was a whirlwind romance, for we were engaged two weeks later, married three months later, and three months after that, they finally moved in. I wouldn't advise a 20-something to do that, but we wanted to live by Christ's standards, so we got married.

My husband, Chris, a transplanted Oklahoman, snaps some great photographs. His Facebook page, Framing Kansas, has over 20,000 likes. He sells his work on Fine Art America. His green thumb transformed my empty palate of a yard into my own little Garden of Eden. His daughter Brittany, now 20 with an associate's degree, sings like a pro, and belongs on The Voice. She had her first child, a baby boy, in April of 2015 with her husband Nathaniel. I enjoy being his grandma. September of 2017 brought them baby girl Aria. The live only a few blocks away, and I love that.

Dan the Man and Pepper, our two doggies, are my constant companions watching my every move—especially with food. They don't have many teeth left, but that's what they have in common with my 91-year-old dad who is a health nut and enjoys showing off that he can put his leg up on the counter in the kitchen. He's still kicking at home on the farm, only Mom hasn't been at his side now for over a decade. Her passing forced him to do laundry and cook, but not clean.

My favorite text is Philippians 4:4-9. My favorite writer is Truman Capote, but Bradbury and Orwell's stuff should be required readings to get a high school diploma in America. I used to coach basketball (did that for 17 years) and enjoyed playing it, but my knees don't anymore. Walking and golf suit them just fine.

Before earning a master's degree in curriculum & instruction from Friends University, I completed the course work for The Institute of Children's Literature out of Connecticut. It's been a long time coming that I apply those writing skills as well as those learned during my undergraduate coursework.

I was also my college newspaper editor for two years. Of course I was the high school editor too. That was back when we formatted justified columns by hitting slashes on the rough copy to finish out the column, and then for the final copy, hit the space bar for every two slashes.

When I started this blog, I had no idea what the focus of it would be, but it's evolved into something mid-way through the first year of its existence. Read more about my purpose in blogging here. I have enjoyed writing since Mrs. Gertrude Reimer told me sixth grade that I did a nice job on my tornado report. Now let's see if I can write without typos.