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Hi I'm Melody

I write for magazines. I fantasize about traveling the world (or at least Europe). I'm a Mormon.

About Me

As a kid, I wrote revamped fairy tales to entertain my parents; 25 years later I'm a freelance writer for magazines like Woman's Day, Parents and Better Homes and Gardens. Lucky thing that my work-at-home job is the ultimate portable career, because I've lived in four different states in the past 12 years as my husband's switched jobs, earned a PhD, and finally settled on a career as a college English professor. I'd say all that moving has made me more flexible; lately I've tried stuff like kayaking (love!) and karaoke (not as bad as I thought!), and I'm always up for exploring the neighborhood with my two daughters. No matter where we end up, I'm quick to map out the local library, Yelp my way into a good Chinese restaurant, and make plenty of new friends. Being a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints makes that last one, at least, really easy.

Why I am a Mormon

I love that no matter where I move, there's a church family of instant friends waiting for me. But being a Mormon has also helped me develop a relationship with and reliance on Jesus Christ that gives me peace and strength even when I'm alone. A few years ago, I took a solo trip to Costa Rica. It was totally out of my comfort zone, and for the first few days I mostly wanted to curl up and cry. Instead, I prayed, read the Book of Mormon, and sang church hymns to myself. The knee-knocking fear went away, replaced by a feeling of well-being and wonder for God's creations. In the church, we sometimes refer to those moments as "tender mercies of the Lord," and as a Mormon I've had lots of them. My faith helps me feel like I've got the big-picture stuff covered; I know why I'm here and what I should be doing with my life. But it also gives me a lot of grace in the day-to-day, as a prayer helps me get going in the morning way better than a cup of coffee would or a Sunday-school lesson helps me solve my problems.

How I live my faith

For people who like new challenges, there's nothing like being a Mormon. Case in point: after I moved to Texas, I was asked to teach Sunday school to a group of 12- and 13-year-olds. Shudder. Spending time with middle schoolers wasn't exactly on my bucket list. But I said yes, knowing that God always makes up the difference between what he's asking us to do and what we're capable of. I'm now 100 percent in love with teaching this Sunday school class. They're teenagers, yes, but they're hilarious and smart and full of great ideas. If I had said no, I'd still be laboring under the delusion that teenagers are a pain. (Okay, sometimes they are.) I also try to serve not just in the church, but in my community. In my last town, I was a member of the local library board. Here I take my daughter to volunteer at the local food bank, and I help out in her grade-school classroom. One of my favorite Book of Mormon verses points out that God has given us all that we have -- "Are we not all beggars?" -- and it's our duty to share our blessings with others. Those are words I really try to live by.