lori holden blog


Hello and Welcome

LavenderLuz is my blog where I share my thoughts on open adoption, parenting, yoga, living mindfully, thinking critically, and whatever else I’m on fire about to share with you.

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I write from Denver, and I’m passionate about de-freakifying open adoption and ending discrimination against adoptees. I’m in the trenches figuring out this parenting thing. I notice perfect moments and encourage you to do so, as well. I study the chakras, practice yoga and ayurveda, and tell stories.

My book, The Open-Hearted Way to Open Adoption: Helping Your Child Grow Up Whole — written with my daughter’s birth mom — was published in 2013 by Rowman & Littlefield and garners rave reviews. The audio version was released mid-2016.

guide to living in open adoption

I explore the complexities of adoption in my podcast, Adoption: The Long View.

And along with an adoptee and a birth mom, I contribute to a video series, Three Sides to Every Adoption.

Also? Yoga, yin and yang, words and wine, critiques of the media, challenging ignorance, and the seeking the Tao in all.

If your name is Lori Holden, why do you call yourself Lavender Luz?

Lori Holden is my name, but I selected Lori Lavender Luz as my blog persona. It’s my Appalachian Trail name (even though I have never traveled the Appalachian Trail).

  • Lavender because I love all shades purple.
  • Luz (“looz”) meaning light-bearer in language I’d like to become fluent in (Spanish).
  • I love all those Ls.

Lavender Luz Button 2013

 Cast of Characters

  • Me. Wonderer, wife, mom, writer.
  • Husband Roger. Curious, amusing and amused, Renaissance-ish.
  • Daughter Tessa.  Spirited, dramatic, vivacious, young adult.
  • Son Reed. Warrior, sweet, athletic, young adult.
  • Dog Dexter, who is now the giver and recipient of my daily cuddles.

My life in 150 words

I’ve journaled faithfully since I was 17, and I can now look back and see interesting patterns and divine guidance. The major transitions in my life tended to come with a twist.

  • In the 1990s, there were twists in the way I met and married Roger (involving comedy improv and a ride in the Weinermobile).
  • In 2001, there were twists in the way I became mom to Tessa.
  • In 2003 there were twists in how I became mom to Reed.
  • In 2007 I became a writer via this blog, which continues to twist in delightful ways.

The twists are all good. They make me realize that I have always been on the best path possible, even though there were moments that I was sure that wasn’t the case.

23 thoughts on “About”

  1. HI…our daughter Elana (via open adoption) is now 17 months old. I am trying to work through how to use language positively to help us all negotiate conversations sensitively and wondered 1) do I volunteer that Elana is adopted or wait til she is old enough to decide who to tell. 2) IF the topic comes up (ie if I am asked how long labor was etc)…have you found some really beautiful phrasing to describe how we became a family? I find that saying “she’s adopted” has such a negative connotation for people that it falls on the floor like a thud when spoken. I was thinking something like “we are a family thanks to the gift of adoption”. It’s long but maybe there is something better that others have thought of? I’m pretty new at this adoption language thing, and hoped I’d have more articles from AF read by now and the book I bought about talking to young children about adoption read by now…sigh. Cheryl

  2. Hi Lori! I keep trying to keep up with you here and truly enjoy your writing. Just want you to know that I felt it necessary to make my blog private because of some circumstances related to our extended family in the adoptions, but wanted to make sure you knew you were welcome to read if you would still like to. I just couldn’t find an email address to send the invite to. You can email me at the one you have or [email protected] and I’ll send you an invite.

  3. Oh my G-d, I love your “about me” page — especially the first part about a certain toy maker … cough. I saw one of those toys this weekend and thought of you.

  4. Lori, I found you through Blog Gems and enjoyed getting to know you and your “cast of characters.” I’ll look around and see what else you have to say!

  5. This is the best ‘About Me’ page I have seen, EVER! You have put mine to shame but also encouraged me to put in a bit of effort:) I loved the last few bits, shows of your great sense of humour 🙂 Thanks for joining in Blog Gems. Jen

  6. There’s another Danette in this world????? HA! I just noticed one of the comments was made by a Danette and then I wondered if I had actually ever commented on your blog before. 🙂
    Just wanted to say hi and that I found your blog through Adoptive Families and FP.
    I also like your Lavendar Luz part of your name. My grandmother was Alba Luz and I have that as a middle name. I have enjoyed reading your blog!

  7. Hi 🙂 I am unsure how I came across your blog as I haven’t adopted nor have put a child for adoption. But once I started reading, I found I couldn’t stop. It’s informative and open and …. peaceful is a word that pops into my mind. Perhaps fate brought me here.
    Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that I love your posts. I am thankful that there are people like you in this world.
    You are raising your children to appreciate all the players involved in their life and that is wonderful.

  8. As you may have heard, adoption has become very near and dear to my heart now that I am an adoptive grandmother. Thank you for being part of our community of awesomeness. You are a wonderful part of Generation Fabulous!

  9. Lavender Luz,
    Good afternoon from East Tennessee! While we are thousands of miles apart, we are most certainly in sync. My similarities to you are the follwing:
    I am a writer (mostly in hobby, outreach to others, and in my profession as a teacher)
    I am an adoptive mother.
    I have an eleven-year-old child and a three-year-old child.
    I love wine.
    I believe my entire journey was and is filled with divine intervention.
    I love the idea of hiking the Appalachian Trail, but never will.
    I actually grew up REALLY close to parts of the AT (in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains).
    I consider myself a Libertarian.
    I hate adoption stereotypes. My husband was adopted in 1963.
    I am navigating a WIDE OPEN adoption my my toddler’s birth parents.
    I write in a similar tone to what I read in your blog. My editor compared me to Lorrie Moore. My friends compare me to Fannie Flagg. My mother compares me to Lewis Grizzard (I am a humorist at heart). My creative writing professor (a loooooong time ago) compared me to John Grisham. I feel like an amateur. But, I did publish a book and I would love to send it to you!

    What do you say? Perhaps we could help each other expose our work to our different parts of the U.S.A. and, in turn, enlighten others about open adoption and make life a little easier on our children.

    The title of my book is THE EYE OF ADOPTION: the true story of my turbulent wait for a baby. You can read excerpts and reviews (20, 5-star reviews, 1 1-star by a redneck from my hometown) on Amazon.com or my website: http://www.jodydyer.com.

    I hope to hear back from you!

    Jody Cantrell Dyer
    [email protected]

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open adoption expert, educator, writer, podcaster, speaker