Let's share ideas! Your real, everyday world with my marriage and family expertise! FREE!!

Married with kiddos? 
Reduce your stress.
Protect your family

from the D Words...
Distress, dismay, disconnect and DIVORCE!
Create the A+ family with
appreciation, acceptance, and adoration!  

3 - FREEBIES for Moms and Dads
Puzzling problem? Let's chat. It's free!

Do your Dreams Need Action?
The D.N.A. Way to Communicate
will uplevel your family DNA! 


your desires and dreams for your marriage and family life.


personal, relationship and communication skills. 


these skills for every age. Add Connections
Coaching Calls!


D: Learn how to discern your desires and dreams individually and as a couple.

  *N:  Necessary skills are learned via EIGHT VIDEOS which build your personal, relationship and communication skills.
    Use the fillable WORKBOOKS. as you watch the videos together or separately

   * A:  Apply the skills taught in the videos, using the LEARN, EXPLORE and PRACTICE (LEP) Packets.
     Choose exercises, questions and conversations you'd like to incorporate into your marriage and family life.

   * 10 Connection-Coaching Calls  incorporate your skills into your unique family DNA. 
    These personal and professional touches empower your marriage and family to be strong and fun!

The DNA Way develops power and protection for your marriage and family! 

Tell us more!

 Calling all parents with young kiddos!

I would love your input for a new program that I am developing.

And, I would deeply appreciate your perspective!

If you are willing to hop on a 15-20 minute call with me
to provide your feedback based on 9 short questions, 
I promise that I will give you one great idea
to help your marriage and kiddos! 

Just book a convenient time for us to chat within the next 10 days.

No cost.
No sales.
Professional, personal and confidential.
Thank you!!



I've been where you are...overwhelmed, lonely, confused and faking it. There was too much to do - and not enough of us to do it all.  So, we mish-mashed our way around being close and just surviving.   

Our ways of relating and communicating shifted - from good, to ugh, to better. 

From my personal life, and my professional world of marriage and family therapy, I share with you the DNA Way to Communicate. It is filled with doable and memorable skills that build strength and kindness throughout your entire home! 


Jenn has some

~  I now teach the girls,
"Do it afraid.‚ÄĚ
I am so grateful that you sat alongside me and helped carry me through while I was afraid to get to the other side.

 ~ One that I use every day is "How did you hear that?" That has helped with my marriage and with the girls to see how they interpret
the way I think I am saying something and
the way that they hear it.

~ You taught me to have the girls say something back to me that I have told them so that my words were clear.

~ You are hands-down, the best counselor for any family looking for someone to guide them.
You are the wisest woman I’ve ever met and a true blessing!

Maggie says:

My time with you helped me so much in some of the hardest years when the kids were so little and I wasn't sure what side was up.

I have referenced a lot of our conversations even still when I'm talking to friends going through some of the same struggles.

I appreciate you always being on my family's side. Meaning you were always working for us to be together and work together versus accusing one of us of being wrong or right.

Allowing me to be vulnerable in such a trusting setting, I will never forget that.
Thank you!

Jan's 3 Reasons for Us And Kids

How long have you been married or together?  
 What do you think of it? 
**  All good?
**let me out?!? 

And, yes, we have thought all of those, and so many other thoughts in between.

See the lessons learned,
the things we cheered about and
the things we regretted. 

Wave One:
Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby!
demands and divisions

Wave Two:  Together but Separate Years

So, these are busy years, in so many different ways.  Our oldest went from being about 10 (grade school) to being 20 (a college student!), while our youngest went from toddler world to owning the playground in grade school.  And the two girls in the middle were in grade school and middle school. 

And, we moved from California to Michigan…for schools, to be closer to some family, for better work and financial balance.
These were tiring years, in different ways than the baby years. Helping kids manage school and teacher stresses, homework that no one really understood, navigating sports teams, coaches and schedules were all daily evolving events.  

We also cared for my mom, with her aging brain disease for these 10 years, and worked on building our careers. 

What happened?

*We got too tired. Our Dreams and Desires got divided…marriage or parenting??  Which do you choose?  Which did we ignore? 

Sure, we still sat on the couch together, but the older kids were still up.  

We had time for a scant social and personal dating life.  

*We used much of our best energy in different directions - me at home (along with p/t career), and Chip at work, with help at home as his intense workload allowed. 

¬†*Parenting and marriage were splitting us‚Ķinto a ‚Äúyou do one, I‚Äôll do the other‚ÄĚ couple.¬† One of us would be stressed about marriage health and the other was focusing on the kids.¬† Then we would flip over - but not in an organized fashion.¬† We would flip because we heard the other‚Äôs concern about being married alone or parenting alone.¬† But our flip still kept us together, but separate.

 *We had some pretty strong D’s going on…Disappointed, dismayed, disconnected, discombobulated…Divorce was a word we had vowed to not include in our vocabulary, but that was leading us to be married business partners. 

Which is different from happily married partners. 

What had we done?  

*Divided the chores/daily living, just to stay afloat. 

Daily tasks overwhelmed our brains and emotions.  We were drained of emotional energy or deep care for each other.

*Our conversations were around the tasks to be assigned and done.  Finances, kids’ schedules, school expectations, sports, meal planning, car maintenance and all the other things we listed, consulted, assigned and done.

*We were not unfaithful, nor really unkind. We were just unconnected.

¬†*Our conversations about ‚ÄúHow are we?‚ÄĚ or ‚ÄúHow can I care for you?‚Ä̬† were shelved. Sure, we‚Äôd haul them out when we were really stressed - at about 11pm.¬†¬†

That usually did not go too well, besides reminding us that something had to be done differently. 
What and how were not clear.

 What did we do?

*We planned some trips - without kids.  

* We separately listed what we wanted to talk about and shared our lists with each other before we left.  We both wanted thinking time so that we could figure this out. 
(Note: Our lists we part of our ‚ÄúD‚ÄĚ - Defining our Desires and Dreams.) Our thinking was part of the Necessary skill of Managing our Emotional self, and preparing to be able to speak clearly while listening accurately.¬†

* We worked on those conversations in the morning.  And then we connected through play and adventure in the afternoon.  We added relaxation and romance in the evening.  

* This worked for us and our Dream of feeling the deep love and respect we had for each other was beginning to come to the top.  

* When we came home, we had made more emotional connections that helped us live into the desire to do life together  - not just next to each other - but together. 

* Our honor, admiration and trust for each other grew, which gave us more courage to be honest and kind.  It helped us parent those growing kids together - with the shared goals (desires) of our kids being honest, compassionate, hard-working and growing in faith.  

* This use of energy helped our dreams become more real, our relationship with each other became more interconnected, and our kids stayed kids - growing, pushing boundaries, needing freedom and guidance a bit different everyday!


Wave Three:
Our DNA grows into a Way of life. 

Our kids grew - graduated colleges, moved on their own, with jobs that had insurance coverage, and income enough to be independent. 
All 4 of our kids married.  The girls got married with 18 months of each other, and our son got married about 2 years later. 
And then, they all had babies!
We helped them with newborns, and with saying goodbye to littles (4 times) that did not live nearly long enough. 
* We continued to care for aging parents, navigate how to care for adult kids who lived near and far, and how to be grandparents with wisdom and good boundaries.

*We kept thinking that this stage should be easier than parenting the littles, the kiddos and the teens. 

But somehow, each stage requires a new twist on old skills, and new skills that we didn’t think we would ever need…Like how to bury little ones, and how to help our adult kiddos grieve that loss. We also hadn’t practiced how to bury a mom and have a step-mom as dad remarried.


What did we do?

* We still sat on the couch together from 10-10:30pm, enjoying a snack that probably was an upgrade from air-popcorn and Kool-Aid. 

* We prayed. 

* We were gracious to each other.  Chip had tons of work!  I was busy with my private practice, grandma days, and caring for my aging parents - mom died during this time and Dad’s health declined.

* We were kindly honest about what boundaries, conversations and attitudes we thought would be best for the different situations.  Our togetherness grew and our D’s went down.  

Our Desire for being married together, in heart, mind and soul was deeply growing. 

Our communication skills continued to be stretched and grown…listening accurately, speaking clearly, touching with compassion and friendship, honoring and supporting each other were crucial in the other years, for sure. 

They were also, and still crucial now.  

We were learning to apply those skills in more unique ways as we were now interacting with littles, kiddos, their parents (and our grown kids, with spouses!)

Our DNA was becoming stronger, more natural and more trusted. 


Which brings us to this next wave…the one we are in now. 

It’s crazy - I always thought that the baby years flew by! 

But, wow!  These years fly by too…we continue to share our D:  Our Desire that our family is united, even when we live all over the country.  And we travel, and support their travel to make family time together. 

Our Desire is that we encourage other couples to fight for their healthy D’s - of dreams, desires, daring growth and deep love. The DNA Way to Communicate is one of those ways.  

Our close view of divorce, or of living separately, under the same roof, was too close for comfort, or good health!  And so, we wanted to share our way of getting our marriage and family DNA into a good space. 

Each family is different.  Clearly, our adult kids all have marriages that are unique to them….thus, their D’s will be different too  - as your’s would be too! 

The use of the Necessary communication skills only grows. 
The other day a granddaughter had been rude to a sibling.¬† She and I talked about it, and she genuinely apologized.¬† But her little brother looked up at me and said, ‚ÄúI don‚Äôt know what to say.‚Ä̬† I said he could say, ‚ÄúI forgive you.‚ÄĚ ..if it was true for him.¬† He nodded, sincerely and wide eyed, and said those kind words to his sister‚Ķwho, sweetly enough, had tears in her 7YO eyes.¬†


These skills Apply  -for any age and stage of life. I know because I used them with my kids, and I am engaging my grandkids with these skills as well. 


I hope that, through my story, you can see hope and wholeness for your marriage and family life story!


Use what you have learned.

Join DNA Way to Communicate to uplevel your strength, stamina and success for all the years to come!

~ Jan