Growing the mind and soul

Adventure 2 page

A Mennonite child learns to make choices which please God, in Dayna’s first book, Benjamin’s Coin Purse.

Her second, a children’s picture book, is based on humorous moments  and life lessons with her many children. Publication date TBA.

In progress, is the true story of A.C. Johnson, raised  in Mississippi during the Jim Crowe era and his march for freedom with Martin Luther King, Junior.  Readers are invited to experience the journey on the Adventures page.

Growing the mind and soul

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Welcome! I’m so glad you dropped in for a visit! Grab a cup of coffee or tea, while you get to know me, as a writer and author.

Ready? Here’s the “short” version….

From childhood, I dreamed of being a writer, but it was in high school journalism that I began learning how to write.

I went to college, but didn’t know what I wanted to “be” when I grew up.

Then I met a fella from Illinois and marriage happened…

The next thing I knew, a child was on the way. Wanting to stay home with my children, I started looking at writing opportunities and attended a conference. Soon, with a toddler at my feet, and a typewriter perched on a wobbly kitchen table, I began writing magazine articles, curriculum lessons, religious and parenting materials, and newsletters. I worked in our church, worked in a local Christian theatre and just kept writing.

Through the theatre, we met a Mennonite family and before long, we began attending a Mennonite church. During this time, I tried my hand at writing a children’s book. Rod & Staff Publishers, Crocket KY, published Benjamin’s Coin Purse in 2001, in English and then in Spanish. This book made me a “real” author. 

But in the course of farm life, church and a growing family, any further thoughts of writing were moved to the bottom of the list. For now, my ministry was at home. 

We had lived in many places, from Illinois to New Mexico, but eventually the road lead back to my home state of Missouri, where we were blessed with our eighth child. Our family was complete.

 Homeschooling, mothering, and housework, kept me busy, so I never saw the divorce coming. With a 19 month old baby, and a house full of children, I found myself single, but never alone.

Putting our lives back together was a long and painful process. My children made me crazy and kept me sane, all at the same time. I worked various jobs, including freelancing for a local newspaper. The brief time back in newspaper gave me the courage and inspiration to start a home business. I was offered the opportunity to take over an online newsletter. Using the newsletter’s bones, I turned it into the Missouri Autism Report Magazine (MAR), which I wrote, edited and published for seven years. 

While publishing the MAR, I met and married a wonderful man. He loved my large family as if they were his, and encouraged me to follow my dream of writing.

During that time I met many wonderful friends and enjoyed the help and support of the entire Missouri autism community. After seven years, it was time to put it to rest. So, I said my good-byes, and then…

I took a deeeeep breath, and a loooong break…

Now, years later, with only one child still at home, I begin again. Life is good, steady and peaceful. I feel I can finally write again.

I created this website as a place where I can share my journey and connect with my tribe. Benjamin’s Coin Purse is still in print, and I have several books on my heart for both children and adults. 

I hope you have enjoyed my story enough to go with me on my next writing adventure. I hope you will be part of my tribe!

Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God's law. Romans 13:10