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Hi I'm Donna

I am a lifelong Texan. I am the mother of eight children. I am a Brain Development Specialist. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

When my eighth child was born with a severe brain injury, I was thrust into a different life than I had enjoyed previously. I had such a strong feeling NOT to accept the prognosis of "blind, immobile and mentally retarded", so I researched and got to work with him. He's 12 now and is not any of those things predicted in his infancy. And that led me to a care as a Neurodevelpmental Specialist. I believe it is part of what being a mom is all about----working to help your child meet their potential REGARDLESS of the starting point and what needs may arise in order to navigate life's hurdles. Brain development is my passion!! Being a native Texan, of course I love football. My sons have all played high school football in the grandest settings---the old Texas Stadium and the new Cowboys Stadium. My kids have also been in choir and performed in cathedrals in Dallas and in the Meyerson Symphony Center. Being part of their activities is the best fun for me! Thank goodness we have eight children so I get to be part of the fun over and over again! Life is wonderful----it hasn't always been wonderful, but enduring with faith and working hard have always brought me back to that wonderful place.

Why I am a Mormon

I joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints when I was 12 because my mother did. I wasn't really sure about it, but I knew one thing for sure. I was very unhappy with our family life and I knew I wanted something different. These people seemed so happy and family seemed to be such a positive thing to them, when it had been so negative for me. When I was 14, however, I was on a youth trip to Nauvoo IL--a place where the Mormons lived before they crossed the plains to Salt Lake City. As I sat in one of the restored buildings and learned of the life they lived, an overwhelming feeling came over me that these people sacrificed all they had to follow the Savior. He was pleased with their lives and they were following the truth. I absolutely knew that Joseph Smith was a truthful man---that he did indeed see God the Father and Jesus Christ in answer to a simple prayer when he was 14 years old. And if God knew Joseph Smith and what troubled his mind, then He knew me and what troubled my mind. I have never felt to question that experience---I can still see the setting so clearly. I am so grateful for that inspiration---I needed to know that I truly was loved and cared for and that people go through tumultuous times but if they are faithful, it will be for their benefit. Nauvoo is one of my favorite places on earth---and every time I return to visit again, that experience is confirmed to me. And that feeling is so real and so motivating!

How I live my faith

I am currently the Sunday School teacher for the 13 year olds in my congregation. I am so glad to have this opportunity because it helps me prioritize studying my scriptures. I have also loved getting to know the young people in my class. They are really thoughtful kids who are figuring out how to live the right way even when their peers try to persuade them otherwise. Praying together as a family and reading the scriptures are so critical to my daily life. The day just doesn't feel right without it. I've even been known to gather the family for "morning" prayer at lunchtime because somehow we got into out day without praying and the day just feels askew. Teaching our children is another responsibility that keeps me on my toes---smart kids ask lots of questions that you better be prepared for. :) While most of my friends do not share my faith, it is wonderful that they respect my faith---and I respect theirs. We have discussions and explain our beliefs to each other in some unlikely settings----mostly in restaurants or perhaps even in a sports grill. I have loved growing to understand their feelings and what motivates them to be such fine, loving women (and great football fans :). My husband's leadership in our home is another pillar I can lean on. He is steadfast in doing the small daily things that add up to very big things when done consistently----family prayer, family scripture study, always saying "yes" when others need help, attending our Sunday meetings, etc. Sometimes I fall short---I think we all do---and having a partner that can keep pressing forward when I falter is a tremendous blessing to me and our children. I also rely on uplifting music to help me steady my course. It's great to have the Internet and ipods to make music so easily available. Sometimes when I'm at home alone, I'll just crank up the inspiring music and rest---it fills my soul!

What will the Mormon missionaries talk about when they visit my home?

The missionaries are just young people (usually young) who are giving up their own time away from friends, family, college, sports, etc to teach about Jesus Christ. They are remarkable when you consider what activities many young people are doing. Giving them a few minutes of your time and sincerely listening to them will leave you with a sweet feeling. But the most important thing to remember is that you need not take their word for it----God Himself will tell you if this message is true. Just pray and ask. He is waiting for you to ask---and He WILL answer. Show more Show less