I grew up in a small town in the Redwoods of Northern California. I have since lived in Hawaii, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. My life is comprised of lots of interesting detours, unexpected bumps, and what some might call "crazy" adventures! While I am a wanderlust at heart, I finally settled down in Washington State in 2011. I just love the Puget Sound and all the islands, the incredible mountain ranges, and the diversity of the both the land and the people. I live in a small town on the confluence of two rivers just outside of Seattle. I am definitely a nature-lover and self-proclaimed "tree hugger", and love exploring beautiful places to hike, wander, or just take in the view. I also love cooking and baking, researching and learning new things, traveling, and pretty much anything outdoors!
I have nearly 20 years of experience working with youth, adults, and families in a variety of settings. Early in my career, I spent several years working with underprivileged youth and families in the non-profit sector. When I completed my master's degree in 2012, I began providing counseling in schools and opened my private practice. Working in schools gave me an amazing opportunity to work closely with students and their families particularly with regard to issues related to school. Working in private practice has given me the ability to work on a deeper level with individuals and families, as well as take therapy outdoors, something I am passionate about, and all of my clients find profoundly therapeutic. In addition to working as a Mental Health Counselor, I am also a School Counselor and find both of these professions to be a great balance and also incredibly complimentary to each another.
I completed my Master's Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy, from Chapman University in Orange, CA in 2012. I then completed my School Counseling Program at City University of Seattle's Albright School of Education in 2013. I graduated with my Bachelor's Degree in Psychology from the University of Hawaii in 2009. I have completed additional training in Trauma-Informed practice, Expressive Art Therapy, Mindfulness, and Self-Compassion. I am also the co-founder of Mindful in the Wild, which focuses on nurturing people's connection with Nature using Mindfulness techniques. I am currently in the process of obtaining certification as a Forest Therapy Guide (complete in February 2021).
I am an active member of Family Systems Therapy Northwest, the Association for Nature and Forest Therapy and the American School Counseling Association.
I specialize in working with teens and adults who struggle with anxiety, depression, self-esteem issues, and life transitions. I enjoy working with families and helping them repair and strengthen their relationships, create healthier patterns of communication, and build trust and connection with one another. I strive to be compassionate, open-minded and sensitive to individuals and families coming from all walks of life.
Working from an integrative approach to therapy, I apply a variety of techniques stemming from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Mindful Self-Compassion, Solution Focused Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Psychodynamic Theory, Positive Psychology, and Ecotherapy. Working closely with individuals and families on their path toward growth and healing is an honor and something I take very seriously.
Being outdoors is a large part of the work I do and something I am very passionate about. As an Ecotherapist, I am deeply aware of the gifts and healing powers nature provides. In nature, we are free from the judgement, shame, and distractions of the human world. Nature gives us a safe space to explore emotions, process trauma, improve clarity and cognition, and to just be with ourselves. Nature has the intuitive sense of what we need.
Generally, Ecotherapy sessions start with a brief check-in and then we begin a slow "wander" in nature. Throughout our walk I will offer you unique opportunities to connect with your senses, open your awareness and deepen your connection with nature. Ecotherapy sessions take place at local parks, trails, and other natural areas in the Snoqualmie Valley area. I also provide remotely guided Ecotherapy sessions via telehealth so this can be done from the convenience of your own backyard or a nearby natural area. All you need is a cell phone and an internet connection.