Wife. Adoptive mom to 3 yo toddler twins and a 4 yo. Career as a Teacher-Librarian temporarily on pause. Reads tons of books to the kids. Longs for two minutes alone in the bathroom. Lives for sloppy kisses. Figuring out life on the fly with laughs, friends, and grace!
I am a “mature” mom – jumped into this in my very late 30s and am now starting to explore my 40s ;-). My hubby is 7 years older, and we joke that our poor kids will have to keep explaining the two old grey-haired fogies at their graduations to all their classmates. Ah well, just think how wise we’ll be by then!
Book Reviews: As a Teacher-Librarian and AVID reader, one of my main filters for understanding the world is through books (in all formats). At this stage, I use a lot of books to help my kids explore and understand the world, too. I want to share what I’ve learned with you. As a Senior Education Specialist, I have led resource review and selection for a major urban school board, was seconded to a provincial Department of Education as a Manager for Literacy, Numeracy & School Libraries, and have my Master’s degree in Information Literacy and Adult Education. I’ve been a teacher for 18 years, a Teacher-Librarian for 14 years and am passionate about sharing my knowledge. I am a Director on the board of and do professional reviews for a children’s book review journal: Resource Links. I’ve been a Director for the Alberta School Library Council and was on the focus group for the creation of Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada.
Join me on the journey as I explore being a “mature” mom to multiples, toddlers, and adopted children through the lens of children’s books. I’m learning a lot – the tables are turned on this teacher!
Adoption: My husband and I struggled with infertility for years and tried IVF, IUI, etc. to no avail. We reluctantly turned to adoption, and, even more terrifyingly, to open adoption. We couldn’t have been more wrong in our fears, or be more blessed in the outcome! We have three beautiful children (the twins and our older toddler are 1/2 siblings), a beautiful (though sometimes unpredictable) relationship with the birth mother and an incredibly supportive relationship with our birth mother’s adoptive mom and family. Our kids are of mixed race, which presents myriad challenges and opportunities as we seek to help them embrace all sides of their heritage, as well as what they find as members of our family! Find out more about this great story in the blog postings. Life is beautiful chaos and is a new adventure every day! I couldn’t survive without humour, my faith, and a supportive family and circle of friends who are along for the ride.
Hi! I’m Colleen. I’m a lot of things – a wife to an amazing husband, a mom to 3 beautiful adopted kids, a recovering goody-two-shoes, know-it-all and rule-keeper, as well as a former teacher and current coffee drinker! That tells you a lot about me, but the most important piece, the one thing I can’t lose and upon which the rest hinges, is my identity in Jesus. The knowledge that I am precious to my Heavenly Father is something I’m still learning to rest in and grow into… His perfect love gives me the courage to step in to my crazy life and walk it out, wherever He takes me!
True to form, I figured I had this parenting thing all figured out when we first adopted. I quickly learned that the trauma that lands kids in adoptive and foster care can predispose them to look at life in fearful and untrusting ways, which can lead to huge challenges in the way they interact with the world. I’m incredibly grateful for the training we’ve received. Empowered to Connect gave us the tools we need to build relationships with our kids and help them heal and grow. Through my conversations with other parents, I’ve learned that our struggles are not unique to us. It is my hope that by sharing the stuff we’re learning we can let other parents know they’re not alone, and give them some of the perspectives and tools that are proving helpful to us as we seek to bring joy and healing and hope to our family.
It is easy to feel ashamed and alone when facing challenges. Wherever you are on your journey, I pray you will know – deep down in your soul – that you are loved, and that there is hope.
*Photos by Julie Vincent Photography