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Hi I'm Stephanie

I am a mother, a writer, and a college instructor. I write books about Down syndrome, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I have 3 children, 1 boy with Down syndrome and 2 younger girls, and I spend most of my time reading to them, taking them on trips, helping them with homework, playing games with them, and teaching them to be kind. I also work professionally as a writer, a college English instructor, and a patient information specialist. My husband and I also collaborate together on important community service projects at his design studio. Doing this work, I write books about Down syndrome, give presentations at conferences, and travel the world. This has given me some amazing opportunities like traveling to Russia this past year to teach about Down syndrome and improve opportunities there.

Why I am a Mormon

I became a Mormon when I was 14-years-old and living in California. Even though my parents were baptized with me, I very much felt like it was my own decision. The gospel simply made sense to me. It made sense that God could speak to us personally through prayer; it made sense that he could speak to us and give us guidance through a prophet; and mostly it made sense that we could be families forever. My understanding has grown so much more since then. After my son's birth, we were scared of the future ahead of us and worried for him. One of the most comforting things was said to us by our bishop who congratulated us on the birth of our son and then explained that it was our responsibility to teach him as much as he could learn. This message and our understanding of his individual worth as a child of God have helped us to be patient during the challenges and also push him to develop his talents so that he now competes as a member of a mountain bike team and is an amateur photographer with an exhibition this Spring in Russia to celebrate World Down Syndrome Day. The gospel is my source of strength and comfort on a daily basis.

How I live my faith

At church on Sunday, I get to teach a wonderful class of 7-year-olds. It's a great opportunity to help the little children in our congregation know that God loves them individually, that they can read the scriptures to find answers to their questions, and that they have enormous potential to do good. The simplicity of the messages I teach them are the foundation of what we believe. But, this church is about so much more than Sunday worship. It includes reading scriptures daily, teaching our own children about important principles like compassion and honesty, praying daily for guidance, and following the commandments. It's also about participating in service activities at church and also finding what we can do as individuals to make the world a better place. At church, we bring meals to the sick, visit people who might be lonely or sad, and do things like make hygiene packets for earthquake victims. Our understanding of the gospel has also motivated us as a family to serve others by using our talents, and our son has reinforced our appreciation of people who might be seen as unconventional. Because of these core values, community service is a vital component of my husband's design studio, so we work together to create websites and books about Down syndrome, breast cancer, cystic fibrosis, and art museums.