My husband and I have been married for 40 years now. We have five daughters and eight sons. Sadly, one of our sons died as a baby. However, he is doing a good job looking after his siblings from Heaven! Our eldest child is 39 and our youngest is 21. We raised our children in Sydney, Australia and moved to the United States in 2013 with four of our children. Eight of our children are married and we currently have 20 grandchildren and counting!
I have been writing about our children for years in little books we affectionately call ‘The Red and Black Books’. These books are filled with details of my pregnancies, births and everyday events that make up each of our children’s unique lives. Just reading the stories takes me back in time as I relive those moments and remember my thoughts and feelings.
Over the years many of my family and friends have encouraged me to write a book about parenting and how my husband and I raised a relatively large family. At long last the book is finished and on its way to being published. In the meantime, I decided to blog about some of the crazy, funny, sad and happy events in my life as a mum and how I managed to remain relatively sane!
Qualifications and Experience
I am well qualified with degrees in psychology, education, counselling and community welfare. I also have a wealth of experience as the mother of thirteen children. I am a member of the Australian Counselling Association and dedicated to ongoing education in the field of psychology, counselling and education.
I am committed to a positive psychological approach to counselling by empowering clients to focus on their inner strengths – both mind, body and soul. My vision and mission is to inspire clients to achieve what they thought impossible by focusing on their strengths as well as their weakness in order to build self-confidence, self-esteem and lead happy and fruitful lives.
What I offer in Counselling and Therapy:
I guide clients to use their head and their heart by mastering unhelpful thoughts, feelings and behaviours using Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) in order to life fulfilled and happy lives.
Trauma affects everyone in different ways and to varying degrees. The interventions I use affords a context for change; challenges patterns of thoughts and behaviours and expands realities by learning how to acknowledge trauma – domestic violence, sexual, psychological and physical abuse as well as PTSD.
As a result of my professional and personal experience I focus on motivational interviewing skills to bring a sense of warmth, compassion, encouragement and humour to my practice. It’s about supporting clients, being non-judgmental and working through issues together.
The strong attachments we have with significant others in our lives can affect us positively or negatively. These attachments are known as schemas (core beliefs about ourselves). I help clients to identify and modify their schemas through Attachment Focused and Schema Therapies.
Familial relationships are challenging at the best of times but sometimes we need help to heal and strengthen them. Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) helps clients reach out to trusted others and risk vulnerability in order to make sense of an overwhelming situation. EFT aims not only to address conflict and problem solve but to help clients understand how they have lost connectivity.
We grieve in many ways over many things we lose in life such as the death of a loved one, our health, wealth, relationships, prestige or even our reputation. Grieving Therapy gently teaches clients to be aware of the difference between releasing grief and replaying traumatic events; knowing the triggers and learning how to address them so healing can begin.
I believe strongly in the motto…
Perceived failure plants the seed for greater success down the road
I am employed as a counsellor for students and staff at ‘Kenvale College of Hospitality Cookery and Events‘, Sydney Australia.
I have my own Private Counselling Practice.
I have worked as a teacher at ‘Tangara School for Girls’, Sydney, NSW, Australia and have been a Mentor and Advisor at Oakcrest School, McLean, Virginia, USA providing academic, social and personal advice and direction to students. I also home schooled one of my children until it was psychologically healthier for both of us that he returned to school.
Conferences and Public Appearances
I have been a Keynote Speaker at events and conferences and have made several media appearances on family matters including:
- LifeZette Magazine “Building Better Mother-Daughter Bonds”
- Fox Television Network: “Babies vs. Bosses”
- Channel Ten Television Network: “Switching Lives”
- Channel Seven Network – Today Tonight: “Effect of TV Watching on Young Children”
- 2UE Radio: “Inappropriate Parenting Behaviors in Support of Children’s Sport”
- Work and Life Conference – sponsored by ‘Yuma Study Center’ 2019
- Parenting with Purpose – sponsored by ‘The Family Institute of Washington’, Washington DC, 2018
- Family Summer: Effective Communication in Marriage – sponsored by ‘Family Enrichment’, Beaver Creek, Colorado, 2018
Perspective Magazine – contributing author on family issues including:
- “The Death of a Child”
- “Time Management for Holiday Periods”
- “Dinnertime Management for the Large Family”
I have written a autobiographical book on parenting that will be published shortly.