day eighteen: laura

Welcome!  If you’re wondering what all the 31 hubbub is about.  Read this.

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31 days wide

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Laura Lynn Leichty.  Say that name three times really fast.

laura and leena

Laura’s daughter (who is 7) asked her which day I was going to write about her.  I guess in her mind I am writing about everyone in order that I like them.  In case anyone else has thought that, it just isn’t true.  Take Laura for example.  She is such a Great friend!  If I were to write about people in order, she’d be at least day 17.  😉

I don’t know the meaning of the name Laura.  But in my mind, it must mean ‘joyous one’.  Laura is SO cheerful and upbeat.  You would think that it could get annoying, but it doesn’t.  She just is truly a happy person and it shines from within.  She loves Jesus, she loves her family and she genuinely loves people.  Laura has the unexplainable ability to meet you, know your life story within five minutes and make you feel like you and her have always been friends.  I don’t know how she does it.  I think she could probably carry on a conversation with an inanimate object.  And make that object feel worthwhile.

Laura and her husband, Craig, met in high school.  They dated each others’ friends and then decided to date each other.  Laura’s dad told her that she had to finish college before she was married.  And so, ever the rule follower, one week after her college graduation, she and Craig were married.  That was 21 years ago.  They have a beautiful daughter named Leena and a cute little puppy dog named Gentry.

Laura and I met because we were in the same MOPS group.  I’m not even sure how we became friends.  I think it must have been something to do with our children being the same age and our mutual love of eating out.  After MOPS was over, Laura would ask if we wanted to go eat lunch somewhere together?  I would think about it and although I love to cook (or not), somehow I always ended up going with her.  So I guess we bonded over lunch for about 2 years straight.  Eating out.  It’s a good thing.

I so admire Laura as a mom.  I’ve learned a lot from her.  And I’ve learned that it is ok to not be a ‘perfect’ parent.  If you are a mom out there that has had c-sections and gave your child <gasp> formula, let Laura and me together say–You are not a failure.  Your child will be just fine.  Oh and if you ever need a hug, go to her.  She gives them away freely.  (Her cheerfulness–not annoying.  Her hugging–the jury is still out.  She won’t give it up though.  I can promise you that.)

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Laura and her family moved further away last year, but we still see each other at least once a month at book club.  Sometimes that is all.  But sometimes we see each other more often.  I went up to see her one evening to talk and catch up and to ask her my questions.  (This was a huge change for her…she LOVES asking people questions.  So for once she had to answer them!)

Have you taken a personality test?  “I know I’ve done DISC.  I was equally high in I and S.” (influence and steadiness)  What about Myers-Briggs?  “What do the letters stand for?”  I tell her and then together we deduce that she would be an ESFP.  Only because they are the exact opposite of me.  And if you read that profile, I think you’ll agree with me that they were thinking of Laura when they wrote it.

Where did you grow up?  “Roanoke, IN.  People go through it now and say how lovely it is.  It is now.  When I lived there, it was like Mayberry.”  You do realize that some people Love Mayberry?  (ahem–Bekah–ahem)

What did you want to be when you were little?  “I wanted to be a pediatrician and have lots of kids.  I did neither.”  haha!  No, you didn’t.  But you did end up working with children, right?  “Yes, I always wanted to be in the medical field.  I took a vocational test when I was older and it told me I would be a good therapist.  Or bus driver.  I decided to become a therapist.”  Just for the record.  You would have been a super fun bus driver.

Where did you go to school?  “Fort Wayne Christian.  And then Purdue for two years and IUPUI for two years to finish my OT degree.”

What were you doing 10 years ago?  “We were living on the northeast side of Fort Wayne.  I was doing occupational therapy and was contracted out to FWCS and working with special needs kids.  Leena wasn’t born yet.”  She had to wait 3 more years but she finally got her little blessing!

Tell me something interesting about the last movie you watched.  “Prisoner–well it has absolutely no redeeming qualities except that Hugh Jackman is in it.  And he is always good-looking.  It is a really brutal movie, but the acting is good.  It definitely makes you think about what you would do in the same situation.”  I’m not sure I got any of that past ‘Hugh Jackman’.

What is your favorite song right now?  “Mandisa’s Overcomer and The One You Need by Shane and Shane”

What is your current hobby?  “Is driving Leena to school a hobby?”  not a good one.  “I am reading.  And I’m exercising.  I’ve been consistently doing strength training since April–two times a week.”  So proud of you for that!  “Oh and I have been helping people decorate their homes.”  I have her lined up to come and help me with my bedroom.  So get in line, people.

What book are you currently reading?  “The Bible and People magazine.  And I’m reading The Fault in Our Stars.  It is one of my most favorite books.  I stand corrected.”  She didn’t want to read it when we were voting at book club one month.  Since then, I think we’ve all read it.  It is Such a good book.  Seriously.  Go read it.  It. Is. Good.

What has been your favorite vacation?  “Whatever the next one is.  I love traveling.  Hawaii, San Francisco, Turks and Caicos….we traveled a lot before Leena was born.”

What vacation has exceeded your expectations?  “Oh that would be surviving Hurricane Ivan while on a Disney Cruise.”  Oh Laura.  only you.  “Yes we survived three days in an airport hotel while the wind and rain hit the windows outside.”  Sounds….exciting.  (and I think she and her husband were in one room with her parents.  or his.  either way.  yay.)  Did you get reimbursed?  “We got half off another Disney cruise.  And that one was great!  I met people on that cruise that I am friends with to this day.  They live out east in New Hampshire, I think.”  That doesn’t surprise me.  And yet, it amazes me all at the same time.  …..She then goes on to tell me about how, one time at the airport, she befriended an old lady who was by herself.  She asked her to eat lunch with them and then something about the lady offering her some of her meal and Laura eating off of her fork.  I don’t know.  She cracks me up how she gets herself into these situations.

What has been your most life changing moment?  “That would be losing my pants in the grocery store and having to pull them back up while my 5-year-old hangs on to them.  Oh and the fact that I had on no underwear.”  Her life is an open book, my friends.  If you ever hear this story told in person, you will not be able to breathe.  I’m telling you now.  The people of the Ossian Deli had their lives changed that day, too.

What would people find surprising about you?  (and based on the previous answer, I’d guess not much!)  “I cry almost every day while listening to songs on the radio.  I still sing and dance using a hairbrush as a microphone.”  Laura, you’re a one woman show.

If you weren’t afraid, what would you do?  “I can’t think of anything I’m afraid of…..well, I’m afraid of trains in India but I’d get back on one if I had to.  I try to face my fears.”  Me too.  Hence the whole interviewing 31 different people.  egads, what was I thinking?

laura in india

Trains in India sometimes lead to the Taj Mahal!

Finish this sentence.  Before I die, I want to “weigh what my driver’s license says I do.”  don’t we all.  “I would like to love people enough that I point them to Jesus.”

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Oh Laura, I’m so glad we both like to eat out.  Thanks for being the question answerer!  Tomorrow is the 19th of October.  My how time flies when we’re having fun.  🙂

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7 thoughts on “day eighteen: laura

  1. Oh Laura! I bet you had a ton of laughs together getting this interview! I must say that I still get tears in my eyes (from laughing) when I am reminded of that grocery store story! I can’t believe you included it! Ha ha! But, that’s one of the best things about Laura… She is an open book. -I may also be laughing about the jury being out on the hugging thing… Rachel we will stick together on that one! 😉 it also does not surprise me one bit that you have friends that you still communicate with from former vacations… You are one of the most fun people to be around and I love you dearly!

  2. I cried reading this….& I SMILED! I am a different person for the Kingdom because of Laura’s genuine & sweet love! She always “loves more”!

  3. Thanks Laura for being one of Rachel’s great friends! You are “creme-de-le-creme!” When Rachel says something about Laura, it always brings a smile to my face. I also love that you attended Purdue University. GO BOILERS!!! The Maggard children keep telling me they are an “IU family.” It is good they have Boiler friends. LOL

  4. I love you dear cousin. It is so fun to hear about your life (since we didn’t grow up very close to one another). Still, I have always loved you and Lisa a lot and known you were incredibly special people. This article confirmed that not a lot has changed and the comments tell me you are still impacting people with your love of Jesus!

  5. This is such a great interview. Laura, I believe we’ve met only once or twice, but I feel like I know you now. 🙂 Your personality sound so endearing to me, your love for Jesus contagious, and your mishaps hilarious. I enjoyed every word. 🙂 God Bless!

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