I am a gray-eyed native Aerodorian currently living in Texas (don’t know what an Aero is yet? You might have some reading to do…) I grew up in San Antonio, graduated from Castle Hills First Baptist School, and was so blessed to have many adults, teachers, and ministers pour their time, love, and wisdom into me. I went to college at Oklahoma Baptist University where I graduated as a Family Psychology major in 2002. After college, I married my best friend, Sam Dallas, and we moved to the Dallas/Fort Worth area where Sam has been a full-time Youth and Apologetics Pastor at Reece Prairie Baptist Church in Burleson. Let’s see, Sam has a Bachelor’s Degree in Bible from OBU, a Master of Divinity from SWBTS, a Master degree in Christian Apologetics from Biola University, and is working on his doctorate, which will then be followed by a Ph. D…. Yeah. He’s very knowledgable and kind of, like, my hero. We both share the same passion for God and for teenagers and learning!
We have two wicked Yorkies appropriately named Elphaba and Luna. Elphie is our stubborn, but pure-hearted firstborn (named after our favorite heroine in the Broadway show, Wicked). Luna is her quirky, odd little sister (named after Luna Lovegood in the Harry Potter series). They were our only babies for seven years until our first human baby, Jasper Ray Dallas was born in September 2014. He is a fun, smart little kiddo who loves trains, books, and harassing his puppy sisters! We call him Jaz or SuperJaz for short. Up to this point, he is my greatest accomplishment and my greatest challenge. I love being Jasper’s Mommi. In 2015, our teenage niece, Harlee, moved in with us and brought so much joy and love with her–having a teen in the house is way more in my comfort zone than having a preschooler. And just recently in 2017, I gave birth to our second son, Caspian Gale Dallas, named after Prince Caspian in the Chronicles of Narnia! Our prince is already a little heartbreaker who loves to snuggle with his Mommi. (And yes, we spell Mommi and Daddi with ‘i’s because I’ve preferred the ‘i’ to the ‘y’ since I changed the spelling of my name in middle school.)
In my twenties, I discovered a love for teaching; I was the Advanced English/Language Arts teacher at Springtown Middle School for seven years. Now I am at U.M.E. Preparatory Academy in Dallas where I’m able to teach part-time and write books and tour the rest of the time. I get to lead these wonderfully smart and energetic seventh and eighth grade students on perilous and personally-challenging adventures through literature and grammar. I am so proud of my students – past and present – they inspire me every day to keep challenging myself.
When away from school, I work alongside Sam at Fusion Student Ministries (www.fusionrpbc.org). I have a passion for (and much experience) working with teenagers – a life that I love. That includes listening to the drama, the laughter, the tears, and the fears of adolescents needing a responsible adult to point them in the right direction. (I am not afraid of practicing tough love… as long as “love” is the key word.) My FSM teens are like my family. I also enjoy singing on my church worship team (www.rpbc.org) every Sunday! The rest of my time is given to daydreams and writing.
The Phantom Island series includes Windchaser, Windfall, Watercrossing, Watermark and two more planned books that are underway–the next of which is a secret title!
NOTE: The Phantom Island series originally started as the self-published version, WIND, back in 2009. Since then, the series has been re-released through Tate Publishing and then re-published in 2018 through IngramSpark. Windchaser (Book 1) and Windfall (Book 2) are the commercially-split versions of the original WIND, with a few updates and changes. Enjoy a fresh read of the adventures of Whitnee, Caleb, and Morgan as they discover a lost island that promises magic, romance, and plenty of secrets…and don’t miss the rest of the series!