Greetings from rainy Vancouver, BC, Canada! My name is Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen; I’m a full-time writer and blogger. My undergraduate degrees are in Psychology and Education from the University of Alberta in Edmonton, and I also have a Master of Social Work (MSW) from the University of British Columbia.
I live in a treehouse overlooking the Pacific Ocean with my husband, two dogs, cat, and other assorted animals. We live across the street from a forest, and often run into bears, coyotes, owls, raccoons, skunks, bats, and even the occasional bobcat. Meow. I mean, Rooaaarrr!!!!!
My first traditionally published book is called Growing Forward When You Can’t Go Back and published by Bethany House. Growing forward is about moving through loss into a new season of life. I’ve been through a lot – and I bet you have, too. It hasn’t been easy, has it? But our stories aren’t over yet! The echoes of Jesus tell us that best is yet to come.
I created my She Blossoms blog and book family over 10 years ago, shortly after I started freelance writing for magazines. Talk about dreams coming true – and staying alive for a decade! I enjoy freelancing but love blogging for a living.
My favorite blog is my newest and most adventurous one:
Will you visit me there?
A Glimpse of My Life
My mom struggled with schizophrenia and nervous breakdowns my whole life; I lived in three foster homes and was living on my own at 17 years old. My mom lives in a group home for elderly adults with mental and physical disabilities in Saskatchewan.
I follow Jesus but my dad is Jewish, born and raised in Jerusalem, Israel. He still lives there. I didn’t meet him until I went to Israel when I was 29 years old.
I lived in Kenya, East Africa for three years. I taught Grade 8 Language Arts and High School Journalism at Rosslyn Academy, an American school for missionaries’ and ex-pat kids in Nairobi.
My undergraduate degrees are in Education and Psychology from the University of Alberta, in Edmonton. My Master of Social Work (MSW) is from the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Vancouver, Canada.
I started volunteering with the Big Sisters/Big Brothers organization in 2012; my “Little” Sister was 11 when we were matched. Soon I’ll be visiting her in Quebec — her dream is to attend university in Montreal! I was a Little Sister myself when I was 10 years old, in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. I’m still in touch with my Big Sister today; she lives in Toronto, Ontario.
As a freelance writer, I’ve written for a wide range of magazines such as Reader’s Digest, Woman’s Day, MSN Health, Natural Health, Spirituality & Health, and sometimes More.
I didn’t get married until I was 35. I married Bruce, who I met when I was 18 and he was 21. He was a bartender at Chi Chi’s Mexican Restaurant, and I was a waitress. We were friends for a long, long time (17 years!) before we finally got married. We struggled with infertility and can’t have children because of azoospermia. We chose not to get in vitro fertilization (IVF), though we did try intrauterine insemination (IUI). Those fertility treatments didn’t work; we decided not to adopt or foster kids.
I’ve written several “She Blossoms” books and ebooks, and have been earning a full-time living as a blogger and writer since 2008. My first ebook is How to Let of Someone You Love: 3 Powerful Secrets (and 75 Tips!) for Healing Your Heart.
After I turned 40, I got my Master of Social Work (MSW) and taught myself to play the flute. I also started painting with oils and acrylics (a dream come true!). I also went on my first mission trip to Haiti.
I’ll be 50 soon, walking into the second half of my life. That’s why I started Traveling in Faith: Tips and Tools for Travel That Transforms You. This is the blog I wanted to start a decade ago, but didn’t feel qualified. To be a “real” travel blogger, I thought, I should travel regularly. Often. Maybe even live on the road, or as an expat in Africa or Australia or even America. But things are different now. It’s time for me to travel faithfully into the second half of my life!
My “She Blossoms” Blog Family
I started blogging as a way to make money more than 10 years ago, which means I have a huge variety of articles. I’ve changed so much since I first started The Adventurous Writer and my “Quips and Tips” blogs – and I’m not thrilled with everything I wrote. I’m a new person now, but I don’t want to delete or erase my old blog posts. I’m trying to update them to reflect the new me (the Holy Girl God created me to be!), but it takes a lot of time to rewrite 2,000 blog posts!
My past is part of who I am today, and who God is creating me to be. Thus, my past articles and blog posts reflect who I was when I first started writing. They aren’t who I am now. Though I’d love to rewrite all my old articles (for both writing/editing practice and to reveal who I am today), it’s not a top priority because I’m no longer concerned what people think. I know who I am in Christ, and that’s all that matters.
My two most popular blogs are: 1) How Love Blossoms – articles about marriage, relationships, and healing from breakups, divorce, and other losses in love; and 2) Blossom Tips – articles about life, work, family, career, and spirituality.
Originally called Quips and Tips for Love and Relationships, She Blossoms contains my first love and relationship articles. That blog grew too big — a victim of its own success — and I had to plant and grow a new garden.
Once called Quips and Tips for Achieving Your Goals, Life Blossoms has all my first articles about goals, life, family, and work.
Originally Quips and Tips for Successful Writers, Writing Blossoms is the first blog I started, back in 2008! My goal was to share my writing journey and help my fellow scribes get published.
And finally, I started Quips and Tips for Couples Coping With Infertility when my husband and I discovered we can’t have kids. Health Blossoms contains my articles about trying to get pregnant and deal with childlessness.
Farewell – For Now!
Your thoughts are welcome on any of my blogs – I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to introduce yourself in the comments section below, or on any blog post.
Take good care of yourself, for you are a child of God…and that means you are worth taking good care of.
In peace and passion,