Happy November! 

As we approach the Thanksgiving and Christmas Holidays and try harder to focus on what we are thankful for in our lives as well as doing more to share our blessings with others, I thought I’d share this quote with you.
Gratitude is the music of the heart,
when its chords are swept by the breeze of kindness.
- Author Unknown

I find that it’s a constant battle to stay positive and not complain about things on a daily basis. Don’t judge me. (wink). As I’ve transitioned back into the 9-5 job world again over the last couple of months, I’ve found myself complaining about how much is on my plate each day, when instead, I should be celebrating the fact that I have an incredible job that allows me to still be in ministry and is providing a way for me to help put my husband through school over the next 2 years. While this job is stressful and overwhelming at times and is stretching me to be a better time-manager, there are so many blessings that come along with this job and this letter would be WAY too long if I started listing them. The same goes for other areas in my life. The point I am trying to make is that if we can focus on the good, it FAR outweighs the bad. There is so much negativity around us trying to pull us down and focus on what we are lacking. When we do this we are unable to see the blessings. If we are always complaining and seeing the negative, then we tend to hold on to things much tighter.

Together, over the next few days and weeks, let’s have an “attitude of gratitude”. Think about all that is good in your life and the blessings God has given you. When we do this there is a chain of events that unfold.

1. We are able to see how much we actually have and how blessed we are.
2. Which causes us to open our eyes and to see what others are lacking.
3. This opens our hearts and minds to be able to share with those less 
    fortunate than us.  
4. It allows others to experience gratitude. 
5. Starts back at 1 again.

As this is repeated over and over again, from person to person, it makes the world a better place for all. Let’s see how much positive change we can make over the next few weeks.
What are you grateful for? Start making your list.
Because of my new job at St. John’s, I am limited on how much time I can travel and sing this Christmas. But I am excited to announce that I will be doing 3 events in December and I’d love to see you there if you live nearby.

December  6   2:00pm    Monastery of St. Gertrude, Cottonwood, ID
December 11  7:00pm    St. John’s,  Pocatello, ID
December 12    TBD        Amazing Grace Fellowship   Twin Falls, ID 
                                        (Singing a few songs with Pastor Lynn Schaal
                                        at his Concert)
I am working on putting together a FANTASTIC Christmas CD to be recorded and released in 2016. LIVE Orchestra, Boys Choir, Duets with a couple of well-known Nashville singers and much much more. I am so excited about this project and what we have in place so far but I need your help to make it happen.

We’ve already raised $14,050 and we have $15,950 to go. If you would like to be part of helping me make this CD a reality you can learn more by going to  More detailed information about the project is there as well as instructions on how you can make a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE donation to my ministry for this Christmas Project.

Thank you for prayerfully considering a gift this year and for your continued support.
I hope you have a Wonderful Thanksgiving.


Goodbye Daisy Lou 

It is with a very heavy heart that I write this newsletter update. I keep putting it off thinking it will get easier to sit down and write this, but I found that it is not.
So here it goes, with tears streaming down my face...
I want to thank you for your prayers and support this past year as we helped our Daisy Dog fight this disease Degenerative Myelopathy (like ALS or MS in humans). After 1 ½ years of fighting, we let our precious girl Daisy cross the Rainbow Bridge on July 26th. She is out of pain and running again with her big brother Patxi (pronounced Pawchee) who crossed the Rainbow Bridge in July 29, 2012.


  Daisy La Bonita (Pretty One) Espil
12-08-04  to  7-26-15

Both Pete and I have been a complete mess. The house is very empty and we have been throwing ourselves into work and keeping very busy in order to keep us away from the house (which is very depressing and lonely). We’ve tried not to leave each other alone very often and have been clinging to each other for support and companionship. It’s amazing how much pets feed our hearts and souls. And we don’t realize just how much until they are no longer with us. I am thankful that God knew we needed animals in our lives. I love this quote:

Until one has loved an animal,
a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.
-Anatole France

One of the things that has been rolling around in my mind the past few weeks, since we lost her, is that so many of my friends have lost loved ones (children, siblings, spouses, parents, grandparents, etc.). I kept beating myself up by thinking “I lost my DOG”. These people have lost PEOPLE. I must be CRAZY to be grieving this much and for it to be this hard.

I came to the realization that loss, no matter who it may be,
is just plain HARD.

This experience has given me more compassion for those who have recently lost a loved one because over the last few weeks I have felt only a fraction of their pain and feelings from loss. Don’t get me wrong, I had compassion before, but as I’ve grieved over my Daisy, I have thought about each of those friends who are grieving the loss of a loved one and I have offered up my tears for them (That God would somehow ease their pain and fill that empty hole in their heart with peace (a peace that only He can give).
I know that so many of you have had us in your thoughts and prayers and have supported us this past year. We appreciate you more than you will ever know.
As Daisy’s caretaker this past year (pretty much 24/7), I had a lot of time to bond and spend time with her and I am thankful that my music allowed me to work from home when I was not travelling to and from concert events. I feel blessed to have had that quality time to spend with her, caring for her, and being there for her in her final days. But spending that much time with her made it that much harder to say goodbye. After letting her go, I came home and I didn’t know what to do with myself. I had been her mommy, tending to everything she needed. The only thing for me to do now that she’s gone (to keep me from feeling completely empty and rolling up in a ball and crying all day) is to shift my energy into work. Not hard for me since I am a work-a-holic.

People have asked us if we will get another dog right away.
We’ve decided to wait awhile and take it one month at a time.

I’ve taken on a full-time job (away from my house, thank you Lord) in addition to doing music (which I have scaled back a little so that I don’t overwhelm myself). When the time is right, we will accept another loving pup into our home and shower them with the same love and affection we poured out on our Daisy and Patxi. Until then, we have a lot of work to do at St. John’s Catholic Student Center on Idaho State University Campus where my husband is the Campus Minister and I am the Administrator (lucky me, I get the bookkeeping and secretarial work. WINK!)  In all honesty, it will be great to work in campus ministry together, alongside my husband, serving the needs of the students at Idaho State. We are turning the page to another chapter.

I will be sending out an actual Newsletter regarding the Music Ministry soon. I just need another week or two to get my head where it needs to be in order to do that. Thank you for your continued support of me and this ministry. Blessings to all of you.

Until we meet again my Daisy Lou. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

Spring, Transitions & Continuing the Journey 

I hope you all are enjoying the beautiful Easter Season. We are enjoying some beautiful weather here in Idaho. In fact, as I write this, I am on my front porch in the shade, while Daisy-dog lies in the grass enjoying the sunshine. 

Back to School
Last fall, my husband and I moved to Pocatello Idaho where Pete took the job as campus minister at St. John’s Catholic Center on the Idaho State University campus. It was a tough decision because he had to leave the Master’s Program after only 1 year (3 year program) in order to take this position that God was calling him to. Sometimes doing the things God calls us to do isn’t always easy. But I am reminded, time and time again, that He is faithful!
We almost have our 1st academic year at St. John’s completed and it has been an amazing year. We’ve had our share of struggles and frustration, but it has really been a great year of fun, learning, and spiritual growth, for both Pete and I. We are so happy to be in Pocatello and blessed to be surrounded by such wonderful people.
Over the past year, Pete kept trying to figure out how he could stay at St. John’s and still be able to finish his Master’s degree.  After exhausting most of the possibilities, he finally found a way. Or should I say… “God provided a way”.  Last week Pete was accepted as a transfer student into Utah State University’s MSW program. He will begin classes on May 12th and will graduate in August of 2017. Woohoo! AND… this will not affect his employment as campus minister at St. John's Catholic center. He will be commuting from Pocatello to Utah State's extension Center in Brigham City (hour and 45 min drive) one night a week. And he will be doing his practicum here in Pocatello.
Now, this is where it gets exciting, and a little scary for me. I have agreed to partner with Pete in campus ministry for the next two years. Anyone who has partnered with Pete, knows why this is scary. :-)  We are doing this to ensure that the ministry here at St. John's does not lose any steam or momentum. We are excited about this because we enjoy doing ministry together but rarely get the opportunity to do so. We managed to do a few parish missions together each year but so far that has been the extent of our collaboration. It is really neat how things work out and God’s timing in all of this. Pope Francis designated this year (2015) as “The Year of the Family/Consecrated Life” so it would only make sense that Pete and I strive to do more together, as a family, by joining forces and becoming stronger for the Kingdom together in ministry. At our last parish mission a lady told us “You are both amazing and together are greater than the sum total of two”. I thought that was cute at first, but then realized that when two are joined together (with God as the center) it’s not too hard to be greater than the sum of two.  
This past year I have stretched myself by heading up the Music team for masses. It has been a wonderful learning experience and I look forward to learning and handling more in the day to day operations at the center. Marriage is all about teamwork and I am excited to be able to spend more time with my husband in ministry and helping him to get through school.
Will This Affect My Music?
Yes, and in a good way. I will still be doing concerts throughout the year, I will just need to be a little more pro-active about planning my availability for touring. I believe, the best way to do this, will be to offer my available dates and try my best to stick to that schedule.
I will have a list of available tour dates on my website calendar page sometime in May.
March Tour Recap
I would have to say Lent and Advent are my favorite times of year to travel and share music. I had such a wonderful time this Lenten season. I want to thank Billings MT (Sisters in Faith Women’s Conference) for inviting me to come share with all of you. What an awesome event. Pat Gohn (author of Blessed, Beautiful and Bodacious”) was the Keynote Speaker/co-presenter and we had a blast working together!  I hope we have more event opportunities to share together in the future. Check out her website. She’s awesome! Hire us so we can come to your town and work together again. This lady is a kick in the pants! I Love her. :-)

Julie and Pam (event coordinators) were so amazing to work with and did an amazing job putting on this conference. If you live within driving distance of Billings Montana, you should REALLY try and go each year. They put on such a great event!

After the women’s conference it was on to St. Leo’s in Lewistown, where Pete and I were able to spend some time with the youth on Saturday night, attend weekend masses and then do a 2 day parish mission on Sunday and Monday nights. Thank you Lewistown for making us feel so welcome. We had such a great time and hope to be able to come back.
It was a great and blessed month for this ministry. Happy Easter to all of you. Thank you for your continued prayers and support.


Special Lenten Message from Jaime 

No Music News except... Remember the New Record is out and Available to purchase at Order your copy today. :-)

Special Lenten Message, From the Heart
I love the Lenten season. Until, I became Catholic, I never really paid attention to Lent and what it’s all about. Now, each year, I look forward to growing a little deeper in my understanding and practice of what it means to truly make sacrifices in my life.
Jesus spent 40 days fasting in the desert before entering into His public ministry (Mt 4:1-11). We imitate Christ by spending 40 days in spiritual discipline before the celebration of Christ’s triumph over sin and death (Easter). You’ve maybe heard the question “So, what did you give up for Lent?”.
 I remember my 1st year as a Catholic very well. I decided to give up coffee for Lent. I’m not a coffee drinker now, but I used to be totally addicted to the iced mocha’s from Moxie Java in Idaho. The best! And when I say I was addicted, I mean “I WAS ADDICTED”.  So I decided for Lent that I was going to give up my Mocha’s.
I know this sounds trivial but stay with me on this. Every day, on my way to work, I would drive by Moxie Java and crave that Mocha so bad. I could almost taste it. Several times I actually turned in to the parking lot, a rush of guilt would poor over me, and then I would drive right back out again. Phew!  I’d remembered the promise that I had made to myself, to sacrifice something that would make me think of Lent and why I was making this sacrifice. For the next few weeks, as I drove by that coffee shop, I would really imagine Jesus walking the road to be crucified, suffering on the cross, and sacrificing everything for me. Suddenly a peace would come over me and the craving for the coffee would go away. But was I really sacrificing? I mean Jesus gave up his life, and here I was giving up coffee? No contest! But the whole point of this is that I needed to choose something that would remind me, on a daily basis, what Jesus did for me, and the coffee is what did it that year.
I like to think that I’ve grown in my journey a little since that Lent (2007). And my sacrifices have become a little more meaningful each year. This year I chose to limit TV. The reason why is because I use television to escape reality. It’s the only way that I’ve found, to turn my brain off from work. Otherwise I’d work 24/7. Just ask my husband, Pete, who has to look over and say “seriously” as I pick up my laptop off the floor (next to my bed) at 11:30pm to jot down one more thing I have to do tomorrow.
So this year, I committed to not only turning off the TV, but I committed to start reading books (at least 1 per week during lent). For those of you who know me well, I am NOT a reader. WHAT? JAIME READ A BOOK, FOR FUN? NOOOOOOOO! I will read if I have to, but it’s certainly not something I choose to do for fun. To me it is work. Pete is a reader and I figure since he reads like 2 books a week, that he’s got that covered for the both of us. Too bad it doesn’t work that way.
I am happy to report that the TV has remained in the off position for most of the week and that I have been picking up Spiritual books instead. Jaime is growing. It’s never too late.
Whether you are Catholic or not, this whole giving up something or sacrificing something during Lent is a very good habit to get into. And remember, if what you give up, doesn’t hurt a little each day, then it’s not really a sacrifice.
I love how Pope Francis ended one of his homilies about Lent and I will end this message with his thoughts.
"During Lent, let us try to draw closer to the people who are going through difficult times:
close to them with affection, prayer and solidarity."

It’s not just about us. But it’s about how we can sacrifice and empty ourselves of selfishness, greed, jealousy, hatred and worldliness making room for Christ and His love; His love for us and for those around us.

“Love’s Work Is Never Done”
May you be blessed this Lenten and Easter Season. Thank you for your continued prayers and support.

A Great Way to Start 2015! 

A Recap of January and February Events.
Thank you…
Anahuac TX, Beaumont TX, San Diego CA, Cottonwood ID and Pocatello ID for inviting me to come and share. I had such a wonderful time.  I pray that God continues to bless you in all you do for His Glory.

Happy Valentine's Everyone! 

“365 Days of Love” Challenge.
(SHARE & POST your Stories)

As we celebrate this feast day of St. Valentine (Feb 14th),
I encourage you to think about how love can be shared 365 days per year.
Seek out someone each day and help them to feel loved.

Pete and I were in Golden Corral Restaurant waiting to go thru line.
There was a homeless man in front of us whose sandals were broken and about to fall off.
I looked at his feet and then looked at Pete’s feet.
Yes,I was going to give away my husband’s shoes. LOL.
Luckily, there was a Fred Meyer next door and we walked over there
and bought this man some new sandals. We also bought his meal.

There is need all around us.
Sometimes it’s as easy as tossing a smile to someone who is
having a terrible day and offering some words of encouragement.
Don’t make it too hard. Don’t be embarrassed. Don’t be shy…

Now share your stories. (Click "leave a comment" below)

Happy January - Happy New Year 

We are almost through January and I hope you are enjoying 2015. The older I get, the faster time seems to fly by.  
Speaking of time flying by, I learned a very valuable lesson last year after losing a dear friend to cancer (2 weeks from diagnosis to death). Time goes fast enough. Don’t make yourself so busy that you can’t take quality time to spend with friends and family. None of us know what tomorrow will bring, and God surrounds us with friends and family for a reason.
New Years’ Resolution
I’m not much for New Year’s Resolutions, but since I am a “workaholic” and I struggle to pull myself away from my job, this year I am going to try to follow my husband’s advice.
“Pray hard, Work hard and Play hard”.
Life is just too short to have it revolve around work. And even though my job is a “ministry” I need to have time away from it to fill myself back up again. It’s not going to be an easy transition, but nothing worth doing ever is. I will let you all know how it goes.
New Christmas Project (praying about it)
And as I mentioned in previous newsletters, I am working on a budget for a New Advent/Christmas Project. I will keep you posted if that all works out. We will start recording that, in Nashville, this summer, if it’s “meant to be”. 
Thank you, for your continued prayers and support. I’d like to end with a recap of the Advent Tour that wrapped up 2014 for this ministry. Thank you to all of the wonderful people, parishes and pastors who made me feel so welcome during Advent. I pray you were blessed by the music and message.


P.S. Daisy (Our Dog/Child with Degenerative Myelopathy) is still getting around on her own. We can’t believe it. We thought she would be in her wheelchair by now. This really shouldn’t surprise us though. She’s always been stubborn. Thanks for your continued prayers on that too.

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