Introducing Laurie Stephens, mom, blogger, author, and all round amazing woman. For Laurie, adopting her daughters from China was an extraordinary experience on many levels. In addition to bringing the children into her life, it deepened her spiritual awareness in ways that she did not expect. Read the interview to find out more:
If someone built a house according to your personality, what would it be like?
The house would be made of brick with a strong and sturdy foundation to get through the good times and bad. Lots of windows that let in sunshine would be required. The inside would be warm, cozy and welcoming; with a decor that is a little worn and lived in but still stylish and colorful.
Tell us your latest news?
I am thrilled that my book “Together Again” is touching people’s lives and being read by families across the country. My website “Spirit Connects Us All” which is at http://www.lauriestephens.com was launched in September and connects folks from the US, Canada, Russia, Japan, Hong Kong, France, Germany and Lithuania!
What inspired you to write Together Again?
I was inspired by the journey to adopting my two extraordinary daughters Lily and Avery and the experience of motherhood.
Who illustrated Together Again?
Sharon Grey. She did an extraordinary job in bringing my words to life in pictures.
Is this book for mainly for children?
Together Again is for children AND their parents and extended families. Even though adoption is the topic, the experience and spiritual principles in the book would be relevant for any family- but especially those built in a non-traditional way (adoption, blended families…)
Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
The book chronicles my own experiences, even the scene where the baby pees on her mother when being held for the first time after meeting is true! My daughter, Lily, did exactly that when she was handed to me.
What book will you definitely pass on to your children when they leave the nest?
So many books fit this category. I hope they keep Together Again as a reminder of my love for them. I thought “BossyPants” by Tina Fey was a funny take on coming into your own as a woman. I will probably pass on a spiritual book by Brian Weiss or Gary Zukav and a novel or two (maybe even my own.)
(Excerpt from back of book)
Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?
Yes! I have a novel in my head and part of it on paper. It is called “When Earth Turns Over Heaven” and is the story mothers and daughters and their relationship through different lifetimes together. I had a bit of it completed on a computer that crashed- always back up your work! I would love to write more children’s books as well and a non-fiction book.
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your book?
Not really, there is one illustration that I am not 100% happy with but you have to balance being perfect with being finishing a project. I needed to move my ego out-of-the-way and get this book out there- that was more important.
Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Not yet, but I am willing to do so!
Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Patience, timing and the universe really does line up behind you are ready. I wrote the first draft several years ago and pitched it to many publishers and agents with no luck. Years later I was at an art and literary show with my artist sister and lo and behold there were local authors and publishers present. I began chatting with one of them and they liked the concept of the book and the manuscript that I had edited several times since the original was written. I found a wonderful partner in my publisher and was able to maintain creative control and keep the messages true and complete- something that might not have been possible with a big name national publisher. Never give up!
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Adoption is not second choice or second best. It is the way that some families are built through adoption and that is not accidental. Our life connections span eternity and lifetimes and we planned to come into one another’s lives this way. Our souls are all connected. Spirit connects us all through eternity and our ties to one another are deeper than biology, race, and ethnicity and are more eternal than geography.
Think about it…. we have lived many lifetimes together, are connected as souls and have been here on earth as different races and genders.
Tell me about one of your proudest moments:
Every time my children accomplish something wonderful- can’t pick just one! I especially love it when I catch them doing something sweet or loving for one another when they don’t know I am watching. Those moments make me think that our coming together as a family through adoption might be more about bringing them together as sisters than anything else
Cooking and baking. Put me in the kitchen let me bake cookies and I go into a happy Zen mood!
Name one food you would never eat?
Not a seafood fan- bleh!
How would you describe your life as a “headline” for a newspaper?
Mother, dreamer, writer who loves laughter and this spiritual journey of life.
Name three items which need to be with you at all times?
Cellphone, lipstick and something to write with.
Who or what makes you laugh until your sides hurt?
My kids, a good Saturday Night Live sketch, Tina Fey, Chelsea Handler and Stephen Colbert!
Buy Together Again at:
Find the author:
Author, Laurie Stephens is a writer, dreamer, and a mom who loves laughter and this spiritual journey known as life. She works in the field of non-profit fundraising and marketing. Originally from Toledo, Ohio and graduated from the University of Toledo with a degree in Communications. Laurie currently resides in a suburb of Atlanta, Georgia, with her two incredible daughters.