Q. Tell us about you and your family. Have you always lived in Colorado Springs?
My husband and I met 32 years ago. We are both originally from California. We moved to Colorado Springs 16 years ago and it has been a wonderful place to raise a family. We have been blessed with six children and now grandchildren. Our sixth grandchild is arriving in June! For the past several years our children have been all over the world with my son and two son-in-law’s active duty in the military. Their stations have ranged from being in Korea, to Germany, Spain, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Alaska. Christmas last was the first time in five years that we had all of our kids home at the same time!
Q. Where did you meet your husband? And what kind of work does he do?
I met my husband at Chico State. It was my last year there. He had been in the military and was getting out after seven years. He rode a motorcycle and once I met him no one else existed! He has worked as a Property Adjustor since we were married. He has gone to every major disaster in the past 30 years from hurricanes to earthquakes to hailstorms. People should be happy when they haven’t met him!
Q. What are winters like in Colorado Springs?
Being a California girl, I honestly didn’t think a person could live in snow! Growing up in the Bay Area and Northern California, snow wasn’t common. Most of the time the snow here is so light and fluffy it just brushes off and it really adds a nice mix to the seasons. Weather changes constantly here so no chance of getting bored.
Q. You have an interesting dog breeding business. Tell us about the breed
and how all of that came to be. Do you have a website in case anyone is looking
for a dog?
I had several friends and family members who got dogs that were not good fits for their families. I kept telling them why don’t you get a Golden. I had a constant friend and companion for over 14 ½ years while my kids were young. He was a faithful Golden boy named Toby. When he died, I mourned him for two years before getting my first English Cream. I couldn’t imagine my family without a dog. I have had many different dogs and breeds over the years and love them all. But as a family dog, you just can’t beat the Goldens.
I absolutely love the pregnancy stage, as well as the birth and first eight weeks with the puppies. I’ve been known to start planning my photo shoots before they are even pregnant! It has also been humbling to see the impact the puppies have on future families, the autistic child who is transformed by a puppy, the certified service dog going into schools twice a week with a school psychologist. The retired man or woman who just lost their spouse. That Golden puppy has a noble purpose he was born into. My website is www.gracefulgoldenpaws.com but Facebook has the most photos of my litters!
Q. How did you first learn about the Billings Method?
I looked and looked for an instructor but never lived near one. I had briefly checked a book out of the library on the Billings Method. Then when we moved back to Northern California, I met June Frakes who was so amazingly passionate about the Billings Method. At the first instruction I was able to get the answers to several of the questions I had struggled with. I was completely convinced of how important it was to work with a teacher. I had two children before learning the method and then planned Billings babies after that. We even used Billings to pick both a brother for my first son and to get my sweet little Anne after three boys.
Q. What inspired you to become a teacher and then a supervisor and trainer?
I wanted every woman to know this information. It had transformed my life in many ways. When you teach a couple, you have instructed one couple and that is good. But when you help train a new teacher you are reaching out to everyone they will teach!
Q. With COVID we wanted to keep our trainings going. We decided to change things up and offer them remotely. What has your experience been like as one of the trainers?
At first, it was very different, and my family spent the first year chiding me that I wasn’t really talking to anyone. “Mom, are you sure you are not just talking to the wall?” Once I got comfortable with the new platform it really opens up teaching and, in many ways, I think is a better way to learn. The participants spend two weeks on each concept which is different from the in-person training which is the entire program in one long weekend.
Q. The number of people opting for remote training is significantly higher than
when we were giving in-person trainings. Why do you think that has happened?
Cost and accessibility! Because of the remote trainings we offer, many people who couldn’t leave their family or work and travel for a long weekend in the past now have the ability to get the training.
Q. As one of the trainers, do you think we should focus on remote trainings or
should they be only offered in special circumstances such as during the
There is a definite place for both. I especially think remote trainings reach medical professionals in a way the in-person never can. The in-person offers the support of meeting like-minded people, and it is beautiful the way you immerse yourself into the information.
Q. What advice would you offer to Billings teachers to stay motivated?
You have a unique skill set! Women need this information, and you are now one of the few who have been chosen to help spread the Good News of the Billings Method. As a Billings Teacher, you have the ability to help transform women’s health and transform their lives. The information allows them to be in charge of their reproductive health! You are empowering not just women but also couples and families. For those who want it, we are offering freedom from being enslaved to contraception.