For those that are browsing the web and just happened onto my site, I'm
a small-town farmer's daughter from southwest Michigan that saw a chance
of a lifetime and I jumped at it! Those that know me know that I
spent the first 40-ish years of my life in a big town (I'm being VERY
sarcastic) in Southwest Michigan.
A wonderful lady by the name of
Lois told me of visiting this country and that country and doing this
and doing that. One day I finally asked 'Just what kind of work did you
DO overseas, Lois?'
'Oh, I was a secretary,' she replied.
After picking my chin up off the floor, 'and they paid for your
travel, and your housing, and the costs to move, and ..., and ..., and
...' (several things have changed a little since she retired, but ...)
'Sounds like my kinda job!'
And here I am! In June of 2000, with Lois as my
cheerleader/rooting-section, I joined the U.S. Department of State and
now work in our embassies overseas!
I started with two months of orientation and training in Washington
and was then sent to live in Moscow, Russia for two years. I laughed at
the time, 'I thought I was joining the the Foreign Service to get away
from the snow and cold in Michigan, and the first place they send me is
Moscow?' I survived, and as you'll see later, even managed to see a
little more of the world while I was there.
My kids, after serious
deliberation, decided to go with me to my first post -- a VERY tough
decision at the time for a 7th grader and a sophomore in high school!
They have truly become experienced world travelers (and can find their
way through most any airport). Attending an 'international' school meant
they had classmates from countries all over the world, and believe me
when I say we needed to hit the world map, and sometimes even the
computer, in order to find a few of them!
They both decided they
wanted to return to Michigan after the two years in Moscow -- so they
moved in with their dad. I miss them terribly, but I certainly
understand ... besides, they still get to come visit me in these exotic
Let's get on with the website!