We recently caught up with the very busy Angel Mama, Lisa Jamieson to learn about her new book Jesus, Let’s Talk.

A delightfully visual exploration of basic prayers for the young and young at heart Jesus, Let’s Talk helps children, early readers, and people with developmental differences enjoy the sweet basics of conversation with Jesus. There are many ways to worship and this natural approach to prayer inspires both the young and young at heart. Colorful photographs of children and young people celebrate that the fingerprints of God are on all people, all around the world. The book also highlights key prayer words using American Sign Language. Young ones who are not yet talking, those who experience hearing impairment, and others who simply want to explore the joy of communicating non-verbally will have fun learning new ways to express themselves.

Introduce a child to a personal relationship with their Creator, Savior, and Friend, Jesus. This delightful book makes a perfect gift for toddlers, early readers, and for young people with developmental-intellectual disabilities.

Featured prayers include:
Thank you, God
I’m sorry, Jesus
Help me, Holy Spirit
I’m listening to you
I believe in you
I love you, Lord

Lisa Jamieson is an author and speaker who also advocates for families affected by disability and caregivers of all generations. She leads the Minnesota Disability Ministry Connection and serves as executive director of Walk Right In Ministries. Her books and Bible studies include Finding Glory in the Thorns, which she co-wrote with her husband, Larry. Lisa and Larry have three grown daughters and are excited to celebrate 30 years of marriage this summer. Their daughter, Carly (19, AS del+), has Angelman Syndrome and lives happily at home with them in Minnesota.

Tell Angelman Today readers a little bit about yourself and your family.

My husband, Larry, and I have three adult daughters and live in Minnesota with our youngest, Carly, who is 19 years old and has Angelman Syndrome. As you would imagine, much of my time is spent caring for Carly and our household but I also write, speak and serve in ministry as an advocate for caregivers of all generations. Larry works for a men’s discipleship ministry and does business consulting. We are excited to celebrate 30 years of marriage this summer.

What is this book about?

This book is about prayer and exploring the very natural ways we can express ourselves with God. Since the photography features young people with various abilities from all around the world, Jesus, Let’s Talk also celebrates that God is beautifully creative. Each and every one of us is very precious to Him.

 What led you to create this book?

While I hope lots of children all around the world will enjoy Jesus, Let’s Talk, I wrote it with Carly, her friends with Angelman Syndrome and other challenging conditions as well as their caregivers at the top of my mind.

On one of those very late nights many Angelman families know too well, I was awake with Carly who seemed to be in pain. In tearful frustration, I called out, “Jesus, help!” while simultaneously signing “help” for Carly to see. Suddenly it occurred to me that we had not explained to her about asking God for help. Although we had been teaching Carly “thank you” and “I love you” prayers around mealtime and bedtime, I realized most other prayers happened inside my head, between me and God. I began teaching Carly a broader range of prayers and a representative gesture or American Sign Language with each scenario. Since I had made Carly photo scrapbooks to model new skills over the years, I began envisioning one pairing basic prayers with key signs. It seemed like a book that could help others but I found nothing like it on the market. I approached my friend Ann about partnering with me because she is a professional photographer, travels internationally and shares my passion to help people of all abilities connect with Jesus. Creating Jesus, Let’s Talk was a labor of love for both of us.

Do you have a favorite story from the process of writing this book?

There were several special moments in the creation of this book but one fun memory that always makes me smile comes from an afternoon in late August. It was our last photo shoot for the project and several families were scheduled to arrive in my backyard at 1:30 pm. We ran into one problem after another from pouring rain to a missing memory card for Ann’s camera. Well, the rain actually cleared up right on time but not before chaos was underway in the house which evolved into three young adults with Angelman Syndrome vying for my daughter’s iPad. We could easily have had six great pictures in the book with that iPad in them but we managed to keep it to only one.

How did you find the time to write Jesus, Let’s Talk? We all know being an Angel Parent is very demanding of our time.

I ask myself this same question sometimes and wish I could give a short answer! Trying to have a career (or any kind of work) let alone enjoy special projects or hobbies feels impossible most days. I don’t know how any parent who has a child with Angelman Syndrome can get through a day without help from others. I am very grateful to have helpers. But even with help, I don’t rest a lot and have to be careful that my family doesn’t pay the consequences when I’m engrossed in a project or busy season with my ministry work.

I am constantly challenged to balance my excitement for creative projects with my love for family and responsibilities related to our household. I’m fortunate to be in a stage of life when our oldest children are out on their own now and Carly is in a transition program for a few hours each day. So, after a quick walk on the treadmill (some days), a very fast shower and maybe even lunch, I have some time to work a few hours a week.

I used to be one of those professionals who never missed a deadline. These days I miss a lot of them, especially when we’ve had a long night or a day with unexpected challenges or interruptions due to Carly’s complex needs. I am also privileged to have a very supportive husband who shares household chores and can sometimes spend an evening snuggling with Carly watching tv if I have creative streak or deadline looming.

I do a fair bit of writing on my computer in the middle of the night when Carly can’t sleep and I’m sitting in a recliner beside her bed. Many ideas come while I’m cooking and showering too. Odd as it seems, I usually have my computer handy in the kitchen and I keep a notebook on my bathroom counter too! I’ve also been known to dictate thoughts into my phone while driving. When my older children were still at home and riding in the car with me, they were sometimes asked to type quick notes or reminders for me on their phone and send it to me in an email. I’m not necessarily proud of this but it’s given us all something to chuckle about and remember now and then (sometimes accompanied by an eye roll from one of my daughters).

Truth be told, there are some selfish reasons why I stay busy too. The creative process energizes me and doing things for others encourages my spirit. My work even becomes a bit of escape from my rather consuming caregiving role with Carly.

Where can readers find the book?

Angelman Today has added Jesus, Let’s Talk to the Ultimate Amazon Special Needs Shop and can be ordered online here https://www.amazon.com/shop/angelmantoday_com

Jesus, Let’s Talk is currently available at Amazon. Larger orders (10 or more) can be placed directly through the publisher at www.WalkRightIn.org.