Power of Moms started small and co-founders, April and Saren, could take care of what needed to be done during their kids’ nap times. But it’s grown into something much larger, more far-reaching, and meaningful than April and Saren could have imagined. Many wonderful moms have stepped forward to help in this cause of empowering and inspiring mothers and Power of Moms is now run by a board of 30 volunteer moms who handle different aspects of the website as well as April and Saren who continue to direct this organization.
Following is information on all the moms who help run Power of Moms:
Saren Eyre Loosli, Executive Director
Saren and her husband, Jared, had five kids in five years, which wasn’t exactly planned. In fact, Saren has learned that very little about motherhood (or life in general) goes exactly as planned! Despite her control-freakish nature, she’s learning to exemplify her name more (Saren comes from the word “serendipity” which means “when, through sagacity, one finds something better than what one planned for”).
After growing up all over the place (Washington DC, London, Salt Lake City, Mexico, Japan, Boston), Saren graduated from Wellesley College and Harvard, spent 18 months doing service work in Eastern Europe, and conducted regional conferences for educators and designed curriculum for schools and preschools. While motherhood is now her primary pursuit, she also runs some programs at her kids’ school and operates a little preschool curriculum company (The Joy School Company) as well as Power of Moms. Yes, she’s a girl who has trouble saying “no.” She often struggles with balance but finds joy (and stress!) in being involved in many pursuits that help her make contributions to the larger world as well as her little world at home.
When she’s not trying to answer five different needs and questions at once, Saren loves reading, writing, and running as well as traveling, hiking and biking with her family. The Loosli family lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for many years, then in St. George, UT for a few years and now Ogden, UT is their home.
April Perry, Executive Director
April is the mother of four children, Alia, Grace, Ethan, and Spencer, and the wife to her best friend, Eric. They live in southern California, where life is full of laundry-folding parties, family jogging sessions around the park, and daily nap times. She received her bachelor’s degree in communications with a minor in family science . . . just two weeks before her first daughter was born, and for the past five years, she has been devoting a large portion of her discretionary time to building Power of Moms.
April spends most of each day being “Mommy,” but she also enjoys actively participating in her church, writing, playing the piano, and organizing closets. The Mind Organization for Moms program is one of her key passions, and she loves helping other people feel giddy about their lists and files.
As a mother, April is working towards achieving greater patience and living more in the moment. She appreciates the sweet, unexpected moments that pop up every day and make her work worthwhile, but she still feels that motherhood is a lot harder than anyone ever let on. Her hope is that Power of Moms can help her and other mothers be the best they can be.
April blogs (occasionally) at The Power of a Family.
Website Logistics and Content Management
Allyson Reynolds, Motherhood Matters Blog Director
Allyson is the mother of four children, Kate, Will, Elizabeth, and Rachael. She has lived 27 of her 30 something years in the Midwest (Iowa and Illinois), but has also lived in San Diego, Florida, Utah, Japan and Los Angeles. She and her husband, Brandon, recently moved from his childhood home near Los Angeles to the rather uncharted territory of Utah.
Allyson earned a B.A. in family science from Brigham Young University and met her husband while living in Sendai, Japan as a missionary. When she can get a little “me time” (what’s that?) she enjoys reading and blogging, the great outdoors, cooking, digital scrapbooking, getting things done, living like a tourist, and date nights with her husband.
Surviving nine years of her husband’s medical training in Iowa while raising their first three children provided many award-winning memories such as shoveling snow and cutting grass with a baby on her back, and cleaning out the gutters on the roof of their house while pregnant. For her, the hardest part of motherhood is finding balance—and not just on the roof. She loves being a mom the most when she finds that “sweet spot” between getting things done and letting the less important things go so she can be in the moment before the moment is gone. For her, snuggling up with her kids and a good book is pure bliss. Allyson blogs at A Day in the Life.
Catherine Avreseth, Motherhood Matters Author
Five children in four years, including two sets of twins, was a surprising life twist for Catherine after wading through years of infertility. Taking care of so many small children has been a challenge, but she and her husband, Doug, see their family explosion as an absolute miracle, a dream come true.
Catherine is the oldest of six children and lauds her parents for teaching her the importance of hard work and family. Two things that seem inseparable. She has a degree in exercise physiology, a minor in creative writing, is part of Segullah’s Prose Editorial Board, and writes for Meridian Magazine.
She finds a busy family life most rewarding when she focuses on building relationships, laughing easily, cultivating gratitude, and choosing joy. Motherhood has turned her into a night owl, simply to preserve a sense of self and sanity (and keep the laundry moving). When not washing something or someone, she loves running the local canyon, reading, writing, and makes a mean dish of home-made mac and cheese. She lives in Salt Lake City and blogs at Wild and Precious.
Koni Smith, Communications Manager and Administrative Assistant
Koni and her family recently left the beautiful, green Blue Ridge Mountains of southwestern Virginia for the mountains of Utah. She sure misses the East! She has five boys and one girl, ranging in age from 5 months (our surprise baby) to 15. She is one of those “crazy coupon ladies” and loves to get a good deal like free products, or even better, get paid to buy them. Koni’s favorite part of being a mom is hearing her kids laugh. It makes her feel that all is right with the world; that probably comes in handy for dealing with her least favorite part, which is the lack of sleep! What is different about being a mother than what she thought as a child? “I realize now that my mom knew WAY more than I ever gave her credit for.” She only wishes that she had realized that her mom did know how she felt because she had been there, too.
Alisha Gale, Content Director
Alisha and her husband live in the Conejo Valley (in Southern California) with their three daughters and two sons. She and her husband both have degrees in philosophy; they met while working as editors for their university’s undergraduate philosophy journal. (It was much more thrilling than it sounds.) She once took a personality test that equated her with HAL (from 2001: A Space Odyssey); she accepts that she shares HAL’s brilliant command of logic, but maintains she uses it for benevolent purposes. She finds that her position as Content Director perfectly dovetails her two primary passions: mothering, and ensuring the Internet does not obliterate proper English grammar and punctuation. She indulges her third passion, pie-making, to such an extent that her children have been known to complain about having to eat pie too often! (She can’t understand it, either.) She also enjoys reading, ballet and floral arranging, and believes there is no shame in using Google to complete the New York Times crossword puzzle.
Melody Bergman, Submissions Manager
Want to see a balancing act? Meet Melody Harrison, single mom of two remarkable, rambunctious, bright-eyed little boys. Stay-at-home mom and music teacher by day, freelance editor by night, this momma has her work cut out for her, but she wouldn’t trade her lifestyle for anything in the world. Every day, she thanks her lucky stars for—well, a lot of things—but especially for her sweet boys and for her college education! A bachelor’s degree in communications, minors in English and music, and 10 years of experience really came in handy when she suddenly became single again after a divorce in her early thirties!
So, what does the daily grind look like for Melody? Plenty of playing, singing, laughing, hugging, feeding, dancing, smiling, cuddling, cooking, yelling, apologizing, scrubbing, scrambling, driving, reprimanding, working, weeping, reading, gasping, washing, exercising, rocking, tickling, and … sleeping? (Ha!)
Melody is jazzed to be working with the Power of Moms team and is excited to reach out to all the other awesome ladies in the network!
Elsje Denison, Author Liaison, Content Editor
“How do you say that?” Elsje (Elsha), named after her Dutch mother, lives by the creed, “Life is what you make it.” Never fully satisfied unless all the plates are spinning, she enjoys being involved and busy. Her number one credential is her amazing best friend and husband, Jay. After meeting in a small town two-year college, they embarked on a lifetime adventure. Their greatest accomplishments are three busy boys.
Elsje received her bachelor’s degree at Utah State University in family and consumer science education with a music minor. Always a teacher at heart, she enjoys using her education in her job as a mother as well as teaching music lessons.
Her family spent the last few years living in Maryland and Texas, and has recently returned to the land of her nativity, Utah. Although she has recently come to the realization and acceptance that she fails at being a domestic diva, she is secure in her love of travel, running, hiking, writing, reading, gardening, and basking in the sunshine.
Anna Jenkins, Publications Director, Special Projects Manager
Anna is our resident grandma. She and her husband Mike have two grandsons (so far, but stay tuned for eventual updates) and are the proud parents of two great daughters—one’s the mother of their grandsons and the other is a college student. The almost-empty-nesters live in Davie County, North Carolina (ahhh…small town life) where Anna runs the box office for the local performing arts center and also works with the teenaged girls in her church. Anna’s interest in Power of Moms is “blooming” exponentially as she strives to become an awesome “Neena” to her grandkids and apply what she is learning to mothering her adult daughters –you know, you NEVER stop doing it! She hopes to also help her daughters become great moms and exposes them to Power of Moms as often as she can. She says, “I really wish I could have had access to this wisdom when I was a young mom, but I am glad I can share it with my girls now!”
Anna graduated from Brigham Young University in 1980 with a B.S. in Home and Family Development, but has often been told she should have had some kind of English major–maybe she will write someday. She has moved around a lot between North Carolina and Virginia, with a 6.5 year stint in El Paso, Texas, which she dearly loved–the desert is rockin’! De-junking, organizing, going to the beach, and doing Zumba at her local Y are some of her favorite things to do, along with working on a recipe blog with two of her sisters and several other friends. You can follow them at Mormon Mavens. She also enjoys mowing the grass on her zero-turn mower (she cuts several acres at a time), which she hopes is the only “hover ’round” she will ever need.
Mary Christensen, Content Editor
Mary Christensen loves being a mother! She and her husband, Jared, have six beautiful children, five of which are still living. She is an east coast gal and was born and raised in the Washington D.C. area. She currently resides in Belmont, Massachusetts.
Mary has a B.S. in physical education with an emphasis in teaching from Brigham Young University. She uses her knowledge daily while keeping up with their children and teaching a once-a-week preschool in her home. She loves to serve in her church, exercise, quilt, organize anything, and spend time with her husband. The beach is an all-time favorite get away, even if you have to haul lots of sand toys and towels!
Being an editor at Power of Moms was been a wonderful boost to her focus as a mother. She appreciates the time it creates for her to read and grow from the great community of women around the world. It also helps her to focus some time on writing and recording experiences in the hopes that one day she can write a mothering book for her children.
Shawnie Sutorius, Content Editor
Bio coming soon…
Tanisha DuBransky, Content Editor
Tanisha is a full-time mom, full-time graduate student, and part-time professor. She was born and raised in Texas where she earned the B.S. in psychology with a minor in English. Soon after graduation, she moved to California to complete the M.A. in clinical psychology with an emphasis in marriage and family therapy. She didn’t know until a year later, but the move brought her closer to her (now) husband of four years.
Tanisha thought that the Fall of 2008 (when she got married, began a full course load in a doctoral program, and started teaching two new classes at separate institutions) was the most challenging and rewarding season of her life. Then she entered motherhood. The trials and blessings of balancing family, work, and graduate school sparked an interest in integrating her passions: marriage, family, and higher education. This merger developed into a desire to discover how women manage their multiple roles and has culminated with a dissertation on the topic.
Upon completing the Ph.D. in education, Tanisha and her husband hope to grow their family. She plans to continue in her calling as a marriage and family educator and will remain committed to helping couples and families develop and maintain strong, healthy relationships.
When she’s not making up silly songs with her 2-year-old son or writing her dissertation, Tanisha creates new recipes, daydreams about planning a family business, and painstakingly trains for her first 5k (she is a sprinter by nature).
Becky Fawcett, Content Editor
When Becky became a mom in August of 2012, people began asking her what her hobbies were. She struggled to know how to answer this question because she had spent the last ten years of her life studying writing and editing and then working in that field. During that time she hadn’t learned to crochet or scrapbook or any of the other typical hobbies. She had been writing and editing.
After a few months of being a mother and trying to answer that question, she realized that her interests hadn’t changed: she still likes to write and edit. As an editor for Power of Moms, Becky has found an outlet for this passion that to others seems more like dreadful homework than a hobby!
Becky grew up running free in the mountains of southwestern Colorado, but now lives in a small community outside of Tooele, Utah with her husband Corlan. She enjoys watching her baby grow, making and eating cookies, and being outdoors—all other hobbies of hers!
Sarah Monson, Content Editor
Sarah grew up in West Los Angeles, served as a missionary in Durban, South Africa, and earned a B.A. from BYU in English teaching. She has taught 8th grade, worked as a technical writer for a web-based company, and is currently the resident editor/writing tutor for her extended family. Reading, writing, and discussing have always fueled her brain, and right now she actually has time to do these things because her son still takes two naps a day. (Keep it up, Kiddo!) She contributes to a blog about teaching in the home and loves being part of the Power of Moms community.
McKell Kane, Content Editor
McKell graduated from Brigham Young University with a bachelor’s degree in English and currently volunteers part time as an English tutor, but she is very excited for the opportunity to do some editing for Power of Moms, work which she has missed since she quit many years ago to stay home with her kids.
McKell is the mother of four children (three sons and one daughter) and spends a lot of her time ferrying them to activities and cheering them on, as she is their biggest (and most vocal) fan. In her spare time she enjoys organizing things (even closets and junk drawers,) gardening, reading, snow skiing, family game nights, and sitting on the porch on dark summer nights, just listening to the silence and watching the fireflies. If there were one thing she could instill in her kids, it would be a knowledge of who they are and the unique, immeasurable potential they each possess. Though that concept is sometimes difficult to remember amid the repetition and occasional drudgery of daily life, she tries to just “be a little better today at remembering it than she was yesterday.”
Amanda Lewis, Content Editor
She received a B.A. in English Language and a minor in editing from BYU and worked full-time as an editor before “retiring” to stay home with her kids. Motherhood is definitely her most challenging adventure yet, but also the most stimulating and rewarding! She loves getting energy and ideas from the Power of Moms community.
Rachel Nielson, Final Editor
Rachel’s entrance into the world was frenzied and unexpected—she was born in an ambulance because her mother’s labor happened too quickly—and life hasn’t slowed down much since. She has a love-hate relationship with being busy, but overall, she’s found that she is happiest when she is engaged in lots of good causes.
In college, she volunteered for a summer at an orphanage for persons with disabilities in El Salvador, and later returned with her husband to live there for a semester right after they got married. They spent the first three months of their marriage sharing a single bed, doing their laundry in the bathtub, and devoting each day to blowing bubbles and coloring pictures with the most beautiful children in the world. They have been lucky enough to return to visit the orphanage almost every year since, and Rachel now directs the Hogar del Niño Project, a program that sends volunteers to live at the orphanage for three-month shifts year-round.
After college, Rachel loved teaching high school English for five years, but she gave that up to be a stay-at-home mom when her little Noah Atticus was born in August of 2011. Noah is adopted and arrived after years of infertility treatments and adoption disappointments. Rachel tries to treasure every minute with her miracle son, even though it is sometimes difficult for her to put down the to-do list and enjoy being home. One of her favorite ways to savor life is through writing, and she blogs about adoption, motherhood, and the ups and downs of daily life.
Rachel understands the immense value of motherhood because her own mother lost a 13-year battle with breast cancer when Rachel was 19 years old. Her mother’s influence on her life has been profound, and Rachel tries every day to emulate her mama and to make her proud.
In her free time, Rachel enjoys planning birthday surprises for friends and family, eating far too many chocolate chip cookies, and reading books that challenge her and make her think. Her best friends are her quiet husband, her sassy sisters, her thoughtful father, and her rambunctious son.
Rachelle Price, Spotlight Manager
Rachelle lives in northern California with her husband and five children, ages 10, 8, 6 (twins), and 2. Rachelle is grateful for her bachelor’s degree in marriage, family and human development, as it has come in handy, but still wishes kids came with an instruction manual! She has had a photography business, but is not currently shooting. Rather, she’s enjoying her little ones while they are still at home.
Her favorite part of being a mom is the occasional, precious moments of serious connection with her kids. Whether it’s a lengthy conversation or giving a sincere compliment, those moments when your child looks in your eyes and you know you’ve connected are the best!
She has a passion for traditions and rituals that bind families together and identify who we are. Rachelle loves a good project, a thought-provoking book, and being with friends and family. She also enjoys reading, running, entertaining, traveling, and digital scrap booking. Her love of families and photography make her a perfect fit for our Picture Stories and Spotlight Manager.
Aubrey Degn, Book Summaries Manager
Aubrey lives with her husband and two children in a small town in Utah. A native Texan, she is still trying to adjust to the idea of winter lasting approximately six months, or so it seems. Aubrey graduated with a B.S. in sports medicine, which she now uses to fix “owies” and to live vicariously through her husband, who is a firefighter/paramedic. She also served a mission for her church in Chile and taught Spanish for a while after she returned. Before having her son, Aubrey worked for several years in student services for a university distance learning program. She has quickly learned that most of her tried-and-true tactics for calming frantic students do not translate to the world of two-year-old tantrums.
Aubrey loves being a mother even though it has been her most challenging adventure yet. She loves to read, play pretend and be outside with her children. They have taught her to notice and appreciate the small things and to laugh more. In her free time, Aubrey likes to read voraciously, play the piano, exercise, and ride horses. She blogs at Read Listen Love.
Public Relations and Marketing
Chrysula Winegar, Director of Social Media Marketing
Chrysula says that being a mother is the hardest thing she’s ever done. She says, “Whilst it is something I have always wanted, it certainly didn’t feel natural or even instinctive! I’ve had to really work at it, to learn, to watch other mothers whom I admire and very consciously create the kind of mother I want to be. I thought I’d love nothing more than to get down on the floor and play trains with my kids. Turns out that’s about my least favorite thing to do!
“So I’m finding my own path, mothering in ways that give my children what they need and want, but also keep me sane and in tune with what matters most. My focus now is on what I do best, instead of how I think I am ‘supposed’ to be doing this. Mothers are powerful, especially when they are living lives that are balanced and purposeful, lives that honor deep desires to give and serve and contribute—not just to their families, but to the entire world.”
Chrysula is a writer, trainer and coach and is mildly obsessed with work/life balance research and issues. She has four children ages 3-9 years (two girls, two boys!) and is a recovering New Yorker, in denial that she now lives in the suburbs. When not mothering or hanging out here, you can find Chrysula at her blog.
Rebecca Walters, Director of Photography and Graphic Design, Public Relations Assistant
Rebecca is the mother of two young children, Sydney and Talmage, who are just less than a year apart. She grew up in Manhattan, Kansas, and received a bachelor of fine arts with an emphasis in graphic design and advertising from Utah State University in 1999. She then served an LDS mission to Argentina and still loves to practice her Spanish with anyone who will talk to her! Since becoming a mother, Rebecca has lived in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Virginia, Colorado and Texas, but is happy to be back in Utah.
Rebecca’s son, Talmage, was born with a life-threatening condition called Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH) and has been the recipient of amazing care and countless prayers. He has been through many surgeries, but Talmage is now a healthy 4-year-old boy and is being treated for Progressive Infantile Scoliosis at Shriners Hospital in Salt Lake City. Talmage has been in a torso cast since October 2010 to correct his scoliosis. Rebecca will be forever thankful to the skilled doctors and nurses who treated her million dollar baby.
After nearly nine years of marriage, Rebecca has added the title of “single mom” to her life resume. She didn’t ever plan on holding that position, but has learned a lot from this recent change. Although going through a divorce is definitely the hardest thing she has ever experienced, Rebecca has found strength by turning to God and relying on the support of wonderful family and friends. A former running-hater, Rebecca now enjoys running the mountain trails near her home.
Rebecca is so excited to be involved with Power of Moms. Please submit any pictures you would allow to be published for Power of Moms to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chantol Sego, Book Editor, Mind Organization for Moms Coach
Chantol married her high school sweetheart in 1998. They have two daughters, ages 7 and 10, and live in western Washington. She has her bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Puget Sound and works full-time in the finance industry. But family definitely comes first. She says, “The best thing about being a mom is hanging out as a family. We love to play board games, do house projects, go camping, take road trips and attend the girls’ sporting events.”
In addition, she volunteers for the parent teacher organization. She helps coordinate the Giving Tree Project to support local families who need help around the holidays. Her girls work with her as “elves” and have assisted in organizing gifts for 150 kids over the past few years.
She’s addicted to organizing, making lists, and personal development books. She loves to read, write, and rearrange furniture at least monthly. (Her husband and kids pick on her constantly about this last one.) She strives to learn new things and to improve as a person, wife and mother. (“Learn to relax” is an item that is always on her to-do list.) She also enjoys writing on her blog, Organized Chaos, when she has time.
Julia Jacobsen, Blog Outreach Manager
Julia and her husband, Erik, are parents to five children, four girls and one boy. They live in Palo Alto, California. Julia grew up in Southern California until her father’s full-time church assignment took her family to Boise, Idaho, and then Salt Lake City, Utah. Studying English and political science along with Spanish, French, and Finnish in college were highlights, as well as six months in London and Europe studying and traveling. Eighteen months in Finland rounded out her college years, where she spent her time doing service and teaching about her church while learning the little-known and complicated Finnish language.
Being a mother was always Julia’s greatest dream. Along with the joys are the daily challenges of raising children and finding happiness and balance. Most of her time is spent as a mom, but she also helps her husband with the financial side of his graphic design business. She enjoys teaching piano to her children and their cousins. Reading, hiking in the hills, traveling, engaging conversation with friends, and rooting for her children’s soccer and baseball teams and the San Francisco Giants are some of Julia’s favorite things.
Danielle Monson, Special Groups Outreach Manager
Danielle and her husband Jordan are the parents of three children, Thais, Skyler and Grace. She is currently living in Utah while her husband is attending grad school but she grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, and spent the last 13 years in Tucson, Arizona. Danielle and her husband met while attending the University of Arizona. Thankfully their love of sports (Jordan loved UA’s basketball team and Danielle was on their track team) brought them together from opposite ends of the country. It makes them happy to think that their move to the desert was so they could find each other.
Danielle never knew how much her time spent as a runner would help her as a mom. She has been blessed with VERY active toddlers and has had many experiences where she has had to run after one of them full speed (usually 7 or 8 months pregnant) before or after they have run out of a store or on to a very busy road, etc. Despite the chaos of raising energetic children, it is a role that has brought the most joy and fulfillment to Danielle’s life. Motherhood requires creativity, multitasking, organization, humor, compassion, determination, discipline, love, and a lot of energy. What an amazing way to stretch and grow!
Danielle has a bucket list a mile long of things she would like to do. One thing motherhood has taught her is that there is a time and season for it all. Things like traveling the world are put aside for now and she is doing things that fit into a busy mother’s schedule. Her hobbies currently consist of getting a shower in each day, devouring a good book, making up little jingles with her kids about getting along and table manners, exercising, trying new recipes, and learning to play the piano. She’s also started blogging.
She is excited to be part of Power of Moms because she firmly believes that “the hands that rock the cradle rule the world!” Danielle has met so many beautiful hands through this wonderful organization.
Mary Jenkins, Google+ Manager, Book Summaries Manager
Mary and her husband John are the parents of two children, Margaret (age 6) and Nathaniel (age 3 ½). They met while attending Brigham Young University and have been married for seven years. She studied marriage, family and human development in pursuit of a career as a marriage and family therapist.
Mary always knew that the most important job she would ever have would be as a mother. When she married her husband they knew they wanted to start their family right away. Being a young mother has not always been easy but it has taught her and helped her to grow in ways she could have never imagined.
Throughout this journey as a mother, Mary tries to be an advocate for her children, both of whom are on the autism spectrum. She loves watching their joy and excitement as they learn new skills or accomplish their goals, even if it’s something like going down the slide by themselves. Their hardwork and dedication has motivated Mary to set goals for herself and learn new skills. Some of her most recent hobbies include sewing, pilates, and running 5Ks.
Mary loves playing with her children and planning fun family outings. She loves lightsaber fighting with Nathaniel, baking in the kitchen with Margaret, and planning surprise water gun attacks on her husband. While she tries to keep a good routine and schedule going to help her children, sometimes the most fun they have is on a spontaneous family bike ride or game night.
Having moved eight times in the last seven years, Mary is enjoying the adventures that come with exploring new places. Currently she and her family live in the Bay Area, where she is on a quest to promote creativity in herself and her family. You can read more about her journey at Beyond Imagination.
Emily Barton, Twitter Manager
Emily and her husband and their three kids currently reside in Southern California, never quite knowing where the next adventure will take them. Emily is a full-time mom and part-time professional photographer. She loves using her photography skills to capture those little moments and precious time that goes all too quickly.
She graduated from BYU with a degree in psychology but tries not to diagnosis her friends and family too much. She worked for the Division of Child and Family Services before “retiring” to be a mom. She believes in working hard and playing hard, all with a glass-half full perspective. Her family’s motto is “Work Hard. Play Hard. Love All Day Long”. She truly believes in the power of love and laughter in the home and wants her home to be a place her kids are always happy to be.
Emily shares her journey through life, her photography and crafts and projects through her blog Emmy Mom–One Day at a Time. She loves the ideas and friendships she has developed through blogging and now through her association with Power of Moms.
Andrea Davis, Book Promotions Leader
Andrea and her husband, Tyler, live in Peoria, Illinois with their four children. She is a small town Idaho girl whose perfect day would include a horse ride in the mountains followed by a hamburger at the local drive-in. She loves the outdoors and has a hard time being a disciplined housekeeper in the summertime. The bike or her running shoes are always demanding some attention.
Andrea was a missionary for her church in the Dominican Republic and learned to love the Spanish language and the Dominican people. While not currently a teacher, Andrea has taught both junior high and university courses and strives to be a teacher in her home daily.
Andrea’s kitchen frequently smells like fresh bread simply because she likes good food! She also loves dates with her husband, looking at the stars, chocolate, adventures with her family, gardening, and a good book.
Andrea believes in the difference a mother can make; not only in the lives of her children, but in those around her. She loves Power of Moms for bringing us all together to make a difference.
Tiffany Sowby, Trainer Manager
While her University of Utah diploma is collecting dust somewhere on a shelf, Tiffany’s education continues in patience, times-table practicing, homework assignments, nursing scraped knees, spelling lists and counseling sibling rivals.
Tiffany’s paychecks are nothing more than spontaneous thank-yous, slobbery kisses, handwritten notes, and hugs, yet motherhood is a job she would never trade. (Though Tiffany could certainly do without temper tantrums, picky eaters and unmade beds.) Tiffany loves playing games, hearing her children laugh, date nights with Mike, laundry (yes, you read that right!), writing, quiet time, baking, and shoes.
Her motto for motherhood is, “Enjoy the little things in life. One day you’ll look back and realize they were the big things.” Tiffany lives in Utah and blogs at Our (Most of the Time) Happy Family
Amber Gillette, Learning Circles Director
Amber has four children, ranging in age from 7 to 2. She and her family live in southern Utah. She earned her bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering and spent four exciting years as a transportation planner for the Salt Lake Olympic Committee. Amber wasn’t sure she would ever have another job that could top this experience, until she became a mom and realized this new “career path” was the most rewarding, fun, and challenging experience of her life.
Most of Amber’s time is spent playing with her children and taking care of their many different needs. Amber loves to squeeze in some time for playing the piano, reading, sewing and doing digital scrapbooking. After becoming a mom, she discovered several other hidden passions, including photography and teaching.
She and her family love outdoor activities and have learned to appreciate the adventures that come up with little ones in tow (at least some of them). Amber’s favorite quote is taped to her computer: “The work will wait while you show the child the rainbow, but the rainbow will not wait while you do the work.”
Kristine Jones, Mind Organization for Moms Manager, Friends Manager
Kristine and her husband are the parents of five children ages 10 to 1. She has lived most of her life in the Midwest and currently resides there now. While pregnant with her first child, she was pursuing a degree in microbiology and vowed to use latex gloves with each diaper change. Not many diapers and messes later, the glove idea had to be thrown out the window. She has since had ample opportunities to build a healthy immune system.
After her three-year-old daughter told her, “I want to be a mom. I want to be in a rush,” Kristine is attempting to slow down and enjoy her children each day a bit more, which means she is trying harder to get her housework done withher children and be more productive when she has a quiet moment. Each of her children are growing and learning so fast and she does not want to miss any of it! She cannot help but wish, however, that she could hit the pause button for a month to get caught up on projects and read a few books.
JaNae Messick, Mind Organization for Moms Coach
JaNae is a professional mother of 4 little ladies–Hayley, Maya, Alice, and Audrey. She and her husband, Ryan, say they have specialized in girls. They have learned to endure high- pitched squealing and to enjoy constant crafting. They can often be found clapping for impromptu dance performances, brushing tangly hair, and riding the roller coaster of tears and feelings or giggles and pure joy! Passionate about organizing, JaNae loves developing, tweaking and perfecting family systems that simplify life and accomplish the goal of raising competent, responsible children. Sharing and analyzing family organization ideas with other moms is her preferred park bench conversation.
JaNae graduated from Brigham Young University with a B.S. in marriage, family and human development. She had no idea that the information covered in her degree only scratched the surface of what she needed to know about developing little humans as a mother! She worked as a professional event planner for a few years–planning corporate conventions and expanding organizational talents that have been greatly appreciated as she and her husband attempt to keep family chaos to a minimum.
When her first pregnancy landed her on the couch for 9 months, she felt blessed to be able to switch careers immediately and begin her professional motherhood. A decade and four kids later, she’s got great job security at home and knows that she will continue to constantly discover ways that she can improve and master herself in this life-long experience.
An American raised in England, she has kept her love of Jane Austen and all the classic BBC dramas but lost her accent long ago. JaNae and her husband have been recharging their batteries at a weekly ballroom dance class that keeps them laughing as they step on each others’ toes. She blogs at Mundane to Memorable.
Dawn Wessman, Bloom Game Manager
Dawn Lammers Wessman is the mother of four entertaining children: Robyn, Holly, Mikey and Jonny. She and her husband Rob are 5’1″ and their resultant offspring are also tiny; thus their family creed is “By very small things are great things brought to pass.” What she loves and struggles with in her motherhood journey is the same: “Being a mother pushes me to face who I am in such a way that I can’t hide from myself. I am forced to deal with my weaknesses, and I am becoming ten million times a better person for it at a faster rate than other experiences could provide. It’s hard, but I love the wild ride of motherhood!” Her greatest desire is to not miss the lessons she is supposed to learn from or pass on to her children.
The pre-mommy Dawn taught Russian to LDS missionaries. She now is a pilates, yoga, cycle, and weight lifting instructor, a motivational speaker, and writes for blogs and magazines. She has produced three aerobics videos that are a challenging workouts but that she is pretty sure her children will tease her about later in life. She is a little afraid of Ferris Wheels and loves music. In Dawn’s free time you’ll catch her studying, writing, napping or dancing. Her current mothering mantra is “Kindness begins with me.” Dawn’s blog is the Courage Zone.
Chantelle Adams, Director of Family Volunteering
Chantelle lives in beautiful British Columbia with her husband and their four children. Together they enjoy many adventures, boating, skiing, motor-biking, camping and hiking, to name a few. But the little things are just as important: the pillow fights, dancing around the house, the late-night talks and snuggling up together to read a good book.
Her passion is educating kids, parents and educators about leading by example, making a difference, and living a life based on key values. Her company, Foundations For Success, has given her the perfect outlet to share this passion with the world.
Ever since she was a little girl, she has wanted to make a difference in the world and knows that raising four strong, responsible, compassionate children is helping her achieve that dream. Giving back in simple ways is one thing that has drawn her family closer and has provided countless moments of joy. Currently her children are spending their spare time raising money to build a school in Africa with Free the Children. Her desire to make a difference led her to become involved with Power of Moms as the Director of Family Volunteering.
Mary Croxford, Value of the Month Manager
Mary loves kids and always knew she wanted to be a mother to a big family. She married her high school sweetie, Bryce. They reside in Highland, Utah. Their first three children are ages 26, 22, and 13. Originally they resolved to have a smaller family, but they learned that plans are rarely realized the way we make them. They do, however, turn out better than expected.
Nine years after their son was born they were blessed with twin sons, followed about a year later by another daughter, and then their little daughter caboose two years after that. To recap, the kids are ages 26, 22, 13, 4, 4, 2 and 1! Mary is also blessed to be “Grammy” to three grandsons with another grandbaby on the way. She has worked with children and youth most of her adult life through church and school involvement, including stints in preschool. Her number one passion is family, but she also enjoys the outdoors, composing music, and has a growing passion for photography.
Her least favorite part of motherhood is not being able to get enough sleep due to the challenge of juggling many demands and schedules. The best part is being rewarded with notes, pictures, hugs and kisses, service, one-on-one talks, and friendship. Motherhood has far exceeded her expectations and she never realized the depth of emotion that would be involved. Her favorite quote? “Live life in crescendo!”
Megan Stewart, Value of the Month Manager
Megan is the mother of three boys ages 4, 3 and 5 months. She and her husband, Wes, currently reside in Eagle Mountain, Utah. A full-time stay-at-home mommy, Megan also sells jewelry part-time. She loves to rock climb and bike as often as she can. She enjoys anything domestic—from decorating to knitting to gardening to cooking—but her greatest joy is her family. Not only does she have her little youngsters to raise, she is the oldest of seven children, five of whom still live at home with mom, four the same ages as her own kids. She never dreamed she’d be mothering alongside her own mother, but she feels so blessed and lucky to soak in the wisdom and love from her own mother, who lives close by, every day. She has a passion for teaching and playing with and cuddling her kids and siblings, and is excited to be on the Power of Moms board so she can draw ideas from women and moms everywhere.
Mindy Thurston, Ambassador
Mindy LOVES being a mom! She lives with her husband, Mike, in a small town in central Utah, with their blended family of six kids, ranging in age from 13 to 1. As a child she always wanted a home full of kids….and boy, did she get her wish! While it didn’t happen quite the way she had planned, she has learned much from the challenges she has had in her time as a divorced single mom, and now as a stepmom.
It is quite an adventure balancing a full time job (she works at a trucking company) and a house full of kids. Her favorite part of being a mom is watching her kids discover and learn to do new things. She loves the magic of looking at the world through the eyes of her little ones and she wishes doing dishes was as fun for her as it is for them! She loves hanging out with family and friends, photography, camping, snowboarding, reading a good book, Zumba, family dinners, and anything and everything “crafty”. Mindy is excited to be a part of such a fabulous network of women, promoting something she feels so passionate about and is looking forward to getting to know YOU!
Brianna Monson, Ambassador
Brianna and her husband Lance have two children, Michael and Arianna. She and her family live in south eastern Washington. Brianna graduated from Washington State University with a degree in elementary education. Brianna uses her degree every day as she teaches her son who was born with severe food allergies.
Brianna just loves spending time with her family! Some of her favorite things to do with her family are: going on vacations, having a family game or movie night, swimming, golfing, kid date nights, scrapbooking with her daughter, and playing at the park.
Brianna also enjoys experimenting in the kitchen, creating recipes that are safe and enjoyable for the whole family. She recently published a cookbook “Allergy Free for the Family”. You can visit her blog, The Allergy Free Family.
Lacy Anderson, Ambassador
Lacy was born in the Bay Area, but grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah and is the third of four children. She met her husband, Brandon, while serving as a missionary for the LDS Church in Bucharest, Romania. They were married a year after returning home and have been blissfully happy for the last nine years.
Lacy graduated from the University of Utah with a bachelor’s degree in photography and she loves using her talents to take great pictures of her family. She also still shoots professionally sometimes. But, her full time job right now is mothering her two adorable children (and growing another one due in March, 2012).
She loves being part of Power of Moms because it changed the way she views motherhood and the way she practices it. She does her best to be a deliberate mother and enjoy her children…even when they tried to “clean” her favorite canvas print with a spray bottle and wipes.
Our Advisory Board
In addition to the great women above who take care of our day-to-day operations, we’ve got a great group of people who offer us advice and ideas.
Here’s a little information on our Advisory Board Members:
Richard and Linda Eyre: Parents of nine children; authors of best-selling parenting books; world-renowned speakers and consultants; founders of valuesparenting.com
Kelly King Anderson: Mother of four; founder of StartUpPrincess.com. Expert in launching and marketing women-owned businesses
Jared Loosli: Father of five; husband of a Power of Moms co-director, cheerful and immensely capable web developer for all his wife’s (neverending) projects; business owner; MIT Engineer
Eric Perry: Father of four; husband of a Power of Moms co-director; sounding board and supporter for his wife; Harvard MBA