What's the most sensible thing you've ever heard someone say?
My year as Mrs. Illinois International prompted a feeling of pride in myself. Not in a boastful way, but in an appreciative sense of deciding to take chances and go for that title. This endeavor taught me that there are many other wonderful opportunities waiting for me as well.
What gets you excited about life?
My hero is a group of people -- the parents/caregivers of children with severe emotional disorder diagnoses. The stigma surrounding mental health diagnosis makes it extremely difficult to accept and be persistent with ongoing treatment. They deserve respect and encouragement instead of blame for a disorder based on medical facts.
If you had to teach something what would you teach?
My life experiences are my most prized possession. They have made me into who I am today. I am thankful for every triumph and tear I have had as a child, wife, parent, and friend. It has given me the ability to understand and help others just as God intended.
How old would you be if you didn't know how old you are?
I never really had a nickname until recently. In my new employment, the fun group of ladies I work with lovingly call me "Barbie" -- yes, like the doll. I consider it a fabulous compliment because Barbie never goes out of style, and her hair and make-up is always perfect!
What is your idea of a fun date night?
I wait very impatiently every year for daffodils, tulips, and especially peonies! Spring is the ultimate season to me because of the blooming flowers. I love to cut them and bring them in the house. It's great to brighten a friend's day too with a heartwarming vase of spring color.